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Subject: C&C SB: First game, first nuttyfun /agonizingly unfair experience rss

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Todd Rewoldt
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Playing through the first scenario while testing/refining a vassal module for the C&C version of SB, we were at a point were things were getting desperate for Red. Down 1 banner to 3 in the "first to five" condition, Red played Mounted Charge to order his full-figured (snicker-snicker) lone cavalry + leader unit (thwarting Yellow's intention to play White Fox Spirit by only ordering one unit...) to attempt to run down Yellow's likewise tank + leader which was at 3 figures.

With the leader inspired dice total about to reach 6 for the attack, a Personal Challenge was issued by Yellow. With two of the four total banners taken to that point being leaders (coming from a background of heavy Ancients playing, the leader dynamics of this game will take some getting used to! wow ), Yellow was comfortable with any outcome of the challenge. Rolling 9d to Red's 5d, Yellow knew his fate was sealed, and the challenge would be lost. Verily, it came to pass: 1 crossed swords to 2. Now leaderless, the Yellow heavy cavalry stared down the barrel of 6d. One Honor, Four Blue, One Green - gack. The 4d battle back garnered two hits, halving the morale of the Red heavies. But that was not the worst of it - a second leader was lost that combat, sealing the fate of the Reds, as the next turn grabbed the fifth and final banner.
_____________________________________________________________________

Honor token management was not a problem for either side - not a single retreat was forced the entire game. Several Dragon cards were played, a few of them costing no honor.

The fragility of the leaders has been commented on before, a hearty re-affirmation of that from me - will take some getting used to, but so far really enjoyed the differences and similarities of this game compared to other C&C titles. Looking forward to C&C: Samurai Battles challenging BattleLore and Ancients (my favored C&C titles) for playing time.

EDIT(s): cleaning up some typos
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I've done two Personal Challenges so far--both with a three die advantage--and have lost both. Will be thinking twice before doing it again.

Leaders are incredibly crucial in this game, especially mounted ones. And a heavy cav unit with a leader is a one-unit wrecking ball. I lost the second scenario with my opponent only utilizing the two cav and a medium foot.
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StevenE Smooth Sailing...
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I have found that while the loss of a single leader is not wholly detrimental and can be overcome, the loss of two leaders usually foretells doom for that player.

I have had a few great preemptive cavalry strikes and cavalry battle backs, twice completely ahnileating the attacker.

Even with my complaints about the components this is a great game that I try to play as often as possible... Solo if need be.

[edit]
My luck with personal challenges has been somewhat of a wash... 2 pushes and one loss. When playing solo I use the personal challenge only if the side has greater honor or needs one more VP.
 
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earache wrote:
I've done two Personal Challenges so far--both with a three die advantage--and have lost both. Will be thinking twice before doing it again.

Leaders are incredibly crucial in this game, especially mounted ones. And a heavy cav unit with a leader is a one-unit wrecking ball. I lost the second scenario with my opponent only utilizing the two cav and a medium foot.


Mounted Samurai on the Art of Tactic side are also very brutal. Hard-hitting and hard-to-hit.
 
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BTW, I don't have rules in front of me and my limited experience with the C&C side was weeks ago. Do lost Leaders count for a banner to the enemy? I thought they just force the Command Card limit to the side losing the Leader to drop by one card.
 
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Brian Sherry
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I am looking to design some scenarios for SB set in the Imjin War. Would it be possible to get the Vassal file you refer to? SB's board size is different from the other C&C titles and I am no programmer to make my own vassal module...

Thanks,

Brian

 
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Todd Rewoldt
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Too busy at work for much of a reply right now, but definitely, Brian.

And, Brady, essentially, aside from a 1d leader check anytime the attached unit takes a close combat hit (which is a big difference in game play), all other evade, movement, when it does/doesn't count as a banner is the same.

EDIT: Brady, "Leader Seppuku" is likely what you are recalling. In C&C:SB, when a unit to which a leader is attached is removed, or when a lone leader is attacked and forced to retreat (I'm not sure if this is the same as Ancients, where anytime a lone leader is attacked it "evades", or if only flags will cause retreats - have to read up/get that clarified) it isn't called "evade" like it is in Ancients, but the effect is the same, having to move back 1-3 hexes. In lieu of making this action, the controlling player may choose to have this leader commit Seppuku. Instead of retreating (and losing honor and fortune tokens for each hex retreated, etc), the leader is removed from the board, but does not count as a victory banner for the opponent. Also, the controlling player loses one randomly selected command card (reducing overall command by one) and gains five honor and fortune tokens. It may not seem obvious from reading through the rules, but there will be instances where this is the advantageous action to take. If there is no retreat path available (either impassable terrain and or enemy units/leaders blocking path) there is no choice - leader must commit Seppuku. There is no "leader escape" action like there is in Ancients.
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Ah! Thanks, Todd!
 
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Todd Rewoldt
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earache wrote:
I've done two Personal Challenges so far--both with a three die advantage--and have lost both. Will be thinking twice before doing it again.


Haven't yet played any other games then the one mentioned above, but one thing I like about this game is how situational the dragon cards are - have to be waiting for the right moment, and that moment may be fleeting. I had been holding Personal Challenge all game, thinking about when would be a good time to play it. A quickish mental inventory of the pros and cons of the above situation led me to believing that was about as good as it gets - odds were almost 2:1 that I would win or tie, and winning would reduce the opponents roll from 6d to 5d, plus, obviously, remove the cavalry leader. Lose, and the chance of losing that leader goes away (which, albeit not statistically likely, was happening at a 50/50 rate to that point...soon to be 60/40!), while still being in pretty good position to win the game. Plus, turns out opponent was going to play the card that causes all flags to be taken (none ignored), which would've been played and potentially causing massive honor hemorrhaging if two or more flags were rolled. Ended up that all was moot, as the 6d whiffed. I think those are the instances that infuriate some about these types of games, but I find thrilling, regardless at which end I find myself. I love the storytelling element the C&C games contain.

Quote:
Leaders are incredibly crucial in this game, especially mounted ones. And a heavy cav unit with a leader is a one-unit wrecking ball. I lost the second scenario with my opponent only utilizing the two cav and a medium foot.


The ability to "inspire" is quite powerful for the mounted leader (assuming I was playing it correctly...) - not quite as impactful as leaders in ancients being able to increase the hit rate from 33% to 50%, but similar. Being able to gain ground and do a bonus attack is maybe even more important in SB, since the hit rates (and numbers of dice) are lower. Takes more rolls to bring units down in SB than Ancients.

Yeah, heavy cavalry in SB are very much like the Mounted Knights in BattleLore - the extra figure about even with the Mounted Knights ability to ignore the first bonus strike from other mounted units. Wrecking balls for sure.
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