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Star Trek Deck Building Game: The Original Series» Forums » Rules

Subject: Questions from a DBG newbie rss

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I am new to deck building games, having only played Ascension once before trying this. I got unlucky, the rule book is the product of klingon culture: "Start of Game" is section seven on page 18; important rules are explained in the Glossary; etc. It also seems to take for granted previous knowledge of deck building mechanisms and makes learning what seems to be a very simple game harder than Race for the Galaxy (which I have learned without much fuss and enjoy quite a lot).

Here are some intriguing questions for your delight. Please don't get from them the impression that I am mentally challenged.

(1) About the most basic mechanism of the game: buying cards. I want to buy a card in Starbase. I match its XP cost with the total XP of one or more of the cards in my hand. I take the desired card from Starbase and move it to the discard area in my player area. The card(s) I've used to buy the new card also go into my discard area. Do I get that right?

(2) Supposing I understood how to buy cards: can I use the change of a card acquisition to buy another card in the same action? For instance, I have the "James T. Kirk" card in my hand and it has 9 XP. Can I buy with it a "Hand Phase Type 2" (4 XP) PLUS a "Commander" (5 XP)?

(3) On page 4, the book says "left over starter cards can be set aside or shuffled into the Starbase Deck". What difference does this option make in terms of game difficulty/complexity/duration?

(4) Whenever the manual says "flagship", is it equivalent to "starship"?

(5) I explore the Space Deck and flip an event which has a Fail effect. I do not meet the goal. I apply the the Fail effect. Does the event remain in play or is it moved to the bottom of the Space Deck?

(6) During battles, where do the "shields" come from? Are they the defense points of the cards on my bridge area?

Thank you for your help and patience. Something tells me these are not going to be my last questions.
 
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I hope I get this right because I've had many questions too that I think I finally resolved. Please feel free to correct anything I have misstated.

1. You play your XP cards to the bridge and they stay out while you buy cards, complete a mission, etc. When you're done your turn then you discard all the cards you played to your bridge, including any cards left in your hand. Yes, you use up the XP points from the cards in the bridge to buy cards.

2. You can buy as many cards as you can afford.

3. So far I've left them out. Not sure what effect it would have to leave them in.

4. Flagship refers to your starting ship plus all the cards in your bridge. It's the total of all the stats on all cards played.

5. Move it to the bottom of the deck. It's a one time event.

6. It says Shields on the cards in the lower right. Your starting ship says Defense in that same spot. The print is so very tiny.
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dbmite wrote:
I hope I get this right because I've had many questions too that I think I finally resolved. Please feel free to correct anything I have misstated.

Thank you. I have a follow up question about buying cards: if I use the XP from a card to buy another one, am I allowed to use any effects from the first card, which is still on the bridge? For example, can I buy a "Lieutenant" by playing "Memory Alpha" (3 XP) and immediately use its effect to upgrade another character from my hand?
 
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I think I know what you mean. If you buy a lieutenant with xp from a card on the bridge, you then could play Memory Alpha from your hand to the bridge and immediately use it's effect to upgrade another character from your hand or bridge. If Memory Alpha was already on the bridge from earlier you couldn't use its effect since the effect happens immediately when it is played.

I found a lot of my confusion was with the timing of cards. This deck builder is different from others I've played since it is so free form. Other games are very structured as to when certain cards must be played. I like the freedom but it opens up the door for lots of questions.

Don't even get me started on the XP pool/Basic Character Upgrade situation that's covered here in another thread. Your total XP is maintained when you upgrade a Basic Character by discarding him. You don't lose his XP. Sure it makes sense now, but it would have been nice to have one sentence about it in the rulebook.

Sometimes the order of what you play does matter even though you're free. cry
 
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dbmite wrote:
I think I know what you mean. If you buy a lieutenant with xp from a card on the bridge, you then could play Memory Alpha from your hand to the bridge and immediately use it's effect to upgrade another character from your hand or bridge.

In fact, my misunderstanding was even more basic. I have found a youtube video from Bandai explaining the TNG version of the game and I realized that I was mistaking the XP cost of the cards (number on the upper-right corner) for the XP points I can use to buy them. Now I see these money-points are the ones written in purple boxes in the "effects" area of the card. A lieutenant gives 2 XP for card-buying purposes, not 3 as I was thinking (right??). My example was absurd because the "Memory Alpha" card does not have XP money-points by itself which could be used to buy another card.

I should have stuck to chess.
 
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Jeff Dunford
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fameros wrote:
(1) About the most basic mechanism of the game: buying cards. I want to buy a card in Starbase. I match its XP cost with the total XP of one or more of the cards in my hand. I take the desired card from Starbase and move it to the discard area in my player area. The card(s) I've used to buy the new card also go into my discard area. Do I get that right?


During your turn, you play characters, maneuvers and setups to your bridge. You execute their text when you play them, and their stats (including any XP they grant) stays on your bridge for the remainder of the turn. When you decide to gain cards from starbase, you may use any XP that was granted by the cards you played. You can also use some or all of this XP to heal your starship, so if you played 6 XP worth of cards (say, an Ensign, a Lieutenant and a Commander), you could buy a card costing 4 and heal 2 damage on your starship.

fameros wrote:
(2) Supposing I understood how to buy cards: can I use the change of a card acquisition to buy another card in the same action? For instance, I have the "James T. Kirk" card in my hand and it has 9 XP. Can I buy with it a "Hand Phase Type 2" (4 XP) PLUS a "Commander" (5 XP)?


You cannot use a cards cost as XP (unless some effect says you can). James T Kirk does not grant you any XP. Basic characters (Ensign = 1 XP, Lieutenant = 2 XP, Commander = 3 XP) grant XP, and there are a few others like Christopher Pike, who gives 4 XP. Some missions might give XP (or reduce costs), too.

fameros wrote:
(3) On page 4, the book says "left over starter cards can be set aside or shuffled into the Starbase Deck". What difference does this option make in terms of game difficulty/complexity/duration?


Starter cards are pretty weak. I'd recommend not shuffling them in, as that would make the game slightly more difficult as you'd have to waste "search" actions to get rid of them when they show up in starbase.

fameros wrote:
(4) Whenever the manual says "flagship", is it equivalent to "starship"?


Yes. "Flagship" is a term leftover from this game's predecessor, where you could acquire other starships and replace your starting starship with a better ship (called your "flagship"). Unfortunately, this mechanism gave the game a runaway leader problem, so it was removed in this version of the game.

fameros wrote:
(5) I explore the Space Deck and flip an event which has a Fail effect. I do not meet the goal. I apply the the Fail effect. Does the event remain in play or is it moved to the bottom of the Space Deck?
It is either moved to a discard area or the bottom of the Space deck (not specified in the rules, so your guess is as good as mine).

fameros wrote:
(6) During battles, where do the "shields" come from? Are they the defense points of the cards on my bridge area?


Your sharship has "defense", but some other cards, like Evasive Maneuvers, provide "shields". Sheilds absorb damage before applying remaining damage to your ship. If the damage to your ship equals or exceeds your defense value (usually 8), then your starship is destroyed. You remove the damage, gain an Ensign, discard all cards from your bridge and hand, and draw a new hand of cards for your next turn.
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Jeff Dunford
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fameros wrote:
dbmite wrote:
I hope I get this right because I've had many questions too that I think I finally resolved. Please feel free to correct anything I have misstated.

Thank you. I have a follow up question about buying cards: if I use the XP from a card to buy another one, am I allowed to use any effects from the first card, which is still on the bridge? For example, can I buy a "Lieutenant" by playing "Memory Alpha" (3 XP) and immediately use its effect to upgrade another character from my hand?


When you gain a card (either from buying with XP or by upgrading), it goes in your discard area, not your bridge (or hand). There are some rare exceptions, but they're clearly stated.
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iNano78 wrote:
During your turn, you play characters, maneuvers and setups to your bridge. You execute their text when you play them, and their stats (including any XP they grant) stays on your bridge for the remainder of the turn. (...)

Thank you for clarifying my points. It is not a difficult game after all, reminds me of Ascension. But man, they could have done a much better job with that rule book.
 
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