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Subject: Print&Play Decks Game (Ambush vs Tactical Strike) rss

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Bart de Groot
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This is a blow-by-blow account of a game played with the Print & Play decks of Strategy of War.

I have decided to take the Ambush deck and my opponent Tactical Strike. This gives me Skies Over the Persian Gulf and Tikrit Crossroad as my base locations, vs Camp Pendleton and Fort Stewart.

I start, and I start with a mix of air and land units in my hand. I decide to draw first a while to have a better picture of where to go with resource types. My opponent follows my example. At 10 cards I open with Silver. I expand to 2 silver and 1x (politics) with my opponent 2 oil and 1 iron.



The first unit is placed by him, LCAL "Hopper 36", and as it has No Standby advances right away towards Tikrit Crossroad. It can move 2, so it's at my door instantly. Now I will have to respond quickly to this rush move.



I quickly place a gold resource so I just have enough to deploy F-15C Eagle "Gorillas" to defend my base. With 2*3 this unit can blow the hovercraft (1*1) out of the water. The craft sidesteps and delivers 1 damage to my air base. The Corporal Gold leader is deployed as reinforcement in an enemy base.

I deploy Sergeant Hamilton in my air base to defend from the hovercraft. At 1(g)3(x) this costs me all my resources. My F-15 advances to push back the hovercraft and intimidate the deployed armor division unit.

My opponent is low on resources and retreats his hovercraft back to base. The armor unit advances and now faces my F-15. Corporal Gold only has 2*2, while my F-15 has 2*3, so even without the Initiative ability I can defeat the armor unit at no risk to myself. But Corporal Gold can employ Reinforce 1 at 2(x). This means my attack would have no effect except costing my opponent 2 resources. I miss this opportunity though and move my F-15 away for some reason, clearly a mistake from me where I should've drained enemy resources. I deploy Lieutenant Black "Torso" 2*2 with all my resources. With a movement of 2 this unit is an immediate threat to the enemy units.

At the sight of my superior forces the enemy units retreat to base. I move my units forward advancing towards both bases.



My opponent deploys Lieutenant Young "Striker". This leader unit provides Assault 1 for attacks. This way even the hovercraft might come in handy still. I counter with the deployment of my Javelin Anti-tank team. I now have 4x 2*2 units deployed, much more firepower than my enemy. My F-15 attacks the Camp Pendleton base and delivers 2 damage, followed by another 2 damage from my air Leader unit.



My opponent now deploys a M60A1 Patton Tank unit. With 3*3 this is the strongest unit on the table. Since my units are mostly move 1 and I don't have ranged units, this would be costly to engage. For now I will deal with his other forces though by launching the Javelin Anti-tank Missile. It brings 2 damage to "Striker" and destroys it. At the other base my air units attack for the 2nd turn and sink the hovercraft and bringing the base defense down to 4. One more such attack and the base is gone. It is not to be however as a Show of Force forces my air units to Extract from the battlefield. They will be back, but it's a big delay in my plans.



The Javelin Anti-tank Missile can be redeployed for 3(g) as long as it is the top card on my casualties deck. This I will do over and over again. Now it brings 2 damage to Corporal Gold, taking him out. My enemy is now down to just his Patton tank unit.

Instead of bringing in more iron resources to enable the Patton tank to use Precision Fire 1 (3(i) cost) a UH-60 Black Hawk "Lancers" appears and is promptly destroyed by an anti-tank missile soon after. Meanwhile I have to deploy my air units again. My land units are too slow and vulnerable to approach the bases as long as that Patton tank is there.

A Tomahawk Block II missile strikes my base, but I am not worried. My opponent again deploys a unit which my Javelin can take out. The Patton tank advances, but with only 2(i) available, it won't be able to do ranged attacks.



With my air force returned the lonely tank does not continue on to my base. The USS Chafee appears, which with 4*4 is even stronger than the Patton tank. I am getting worried I might be pounded soon. Then I spot something I might have been able to do before already, but better late than never. I use my Javelin to give 2 damage to the Patton tank. This is not enough to destroy it by itself, but in combination with an air attack it takes out the tank. Since my air unit has Initiative the tank cannot return fire.

Only the USS Chafee is left in the enemy camp. My opponent appears to have run out of (good) cards and is flustered from losing the Patton. He now faces my force of 3x 2*2 and 2*3. Just in case that isn't enough I deploy a Sniper team and a CH-47 Chinook unit as well. I use the Javelin missile + air Initiative ploy on the USS Chafee to sink it.

This leaves my massive force without any opposition and I pummel the enemy bases into oblivion in 2 turns.

Post-game analysis shows that the Javelin Anti-tank Missile redeploy ability really was very powerful here. In combination with the Air units Initiative I could deal deadly blows to powerful units over and over.

The game was a lot of fun, and not just because I won. You are dependent on the luck of the draw, but there are a lot of choices to be made on how to utilise your cards. The biggest choice is which card to use for resources and which to deploy. But even battlefield manoeuvring requires tough decisions and is not just a matter of applying a fixed formula. If you are left with bad luck you have enough time left to play another game, as games don't take too long and play fast.
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Bart de Groot
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The Javelin Anti-tank Missile has since been updated. It now costs 5(x) to redeploy from the casualties pile. Had this been used for this game I think it would not have changed very muchsince I had many rsources. Some things might have taken slightly longer, which could have meant 2 fewer units on the map, and several more turns to get the same done, as you can only draw a card or place a resource. Perhaps my opponent would've been able to do damage to me with his units in those extra turns.
 
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David Valadez
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Are there effects that let you cycle or search through your deck to put together your combos? This could help alleviate some of the luck factor.
 
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Bart de Groot
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There are some that allow you to look for specific cards in your deck. I know for example:

Allows you to search for a warship unit and place it at the top of your deck. It was played in this game, but near the end, and the resources weren't there to use it. There are probably others, but I haven't studied them all yet. The new cards have only been available for a short time.

You can use cards for multiple things, so even if you didn't get what you wanted you can make something of it. If you draw your expensive units first you can use them as resources and later change them back into units. But with any game with random card draws you will always keep a bit of a luck factor.

As with this game, I got a good set of cards. But there are things my opponent might have been able to do differently. Instead of placing units for the slaughter he could've built up more resources. Some resources were cards that could've been staged for redeployment on the battlefield. That could've made a difference.

The test of a game involving luck is will better players win more often? And I think with this game they will definitely.
 
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Panda Bear
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Clearwater
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In my experiences so far, luck seems to only effect the draw...like if your hankering badly for a resource but you get jammed with "no resource deploy" cards over & over; however, luck seems to be a fleeting ideal after the first few plays. The options of draw OR play a resource, along with the support area , add interesting levels to the norm.

One great thing though is the game's pace, coupled with the above...I think in any other LCG/CCG would make games take eons but with this game it is alleviated by the sheer speed at which the game moves.
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