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PsiComa's Star-by-Star Variant Thread(from old thread)


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#1 bnorton916

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Posted 01 December 2008 - 02:42 PM

PsiComa

In the Shattered Ascension rules you find a game option dubbed Star by Star. The idea is that your Home System is just another planet tile on your hand, and you must use your own strategy and cunning when placing it.
After more games, and more use of this option in my group, I'd like to make a comment on my experience with it. Originally I guess I viewed Star by Star as a vivid thing where the participants could indulge in something resembling the extreme sports of Ti3, and act as a refresher for the usual pie-on-pie galaxy.

But when we got to play it more I see it's so much more than that, and it worked out brilliantly with so few additional rules. This is the pro's of the game option:

1) More skill, less luck: It removes the luck factor that rests on planet tile dealing. Even though your hand is bad, you can drop your HS at any place that seems alright. If another player with extremely good tiles want to make sure he gets some of them he'd need to place one first. That's when the player with bad tiles jump in. It actually adds a whole new sense of strategy compared to the original way, which really is a no-brainer: If you get good tiles you get a good galactic 'pie', and vise versa.
Also the galaxy build time is reduced since players don't need to figure out their exact HS position in ring 4 before they start placing. You just place and live in your yellow border, and place it normally. One less rule to think about and consider.

2) More choices, new strategy, nice change: One of the things that I missed on this awesome game was a little interesting change; In so many of the games players got out to their galactic pie that had been dealt, and there it would often stagnate (i'll comment this in point 3) in the normal situation (in general terms of course) where you could go Mecatol Rex, or make war with either neighbor. And war between to races was always along that wall at the end of the map. Wars are much more fun when you have space to maneuver on. Another add is possibility to live closer to Mecatol for instance where you'd be more exposed to venturing fleets from all angles, or you could live safer at the rim and carve your own corner of the galaxy. Which race you play should play a large part here.

3) More dynamic, both action-wise and diplomatic: The game could often stagnate when all players had claimed their (good or bad) galactic pie. Going outside that and breach into the god-given pie of another was immediately a reason to have a war declared on you. In Star by Star, you just are. You find nothing such normalization and clear borders given you from the rules' side. You must make them yourselves through diplomacy. We also see that there are larger chance of getting action to the board, since people have no pie to be afraid to step out from, and some races live closer to each other than normal. However, two races that live extremely close will in the very most cases have to cooperate to stay competitive, and such it balances out through diplomacy. A good trade agreement would also be important for weak races in this situation.
I started two PBeM games, Pandemonium and The Starlight Legacy. Without and with this option respectively, and it is no question which the more fun game was.

4) Less synthetic, more flavor: This is the reason that actually is most important for me personally. The feeling. When I for the first time stepped out into a 4-ring map with this variant, I felt like I have left some kind of simulator and stepped out to the "real" galaxy. The synthetic symmetrical lines where gone and you had to make your own situation. The training stage was over, in a way. Equal themed computer games do not have symmetrical galaxies and boardgames need not either. And this statement was confirmed by how good the game actually worked out. Nowadays I use Star by Star as often as possible.



The new extra rules added when using this option is:
-You may not activate another HS during the first round of play.
-Muaat is a distant rim system and must be placed in the outer ring.
-Double the custodians on Mecatol (to not make it over tempting to jump mecatol too soon for those who live close. But then again, this could also be a regulation that is strictly not needed!)
-Neighbors are the two closest HS's to yours. If more are equally close, you choose before the game start.

Joram

Awesome!

In theory, I agree with everything you said!

MOther

I want to try this

obsidian

Sounds interesting to say the least!

When you have played this, what changes to your setup strategy do you notice? Do players drop their garbage at the beginning, hope to draw out someone's HS, then place theirs at the first opportune time? Or do they place their good stuff and hope to get there? Or place the HS ASAP so they can drop their good stuff next to it? etc.

Fjuri

nice idea, good alternative to preset maps to get more even starting position

Retillion

Hi, everybody !

PsiComa, your Star by Star idea seems great !
Thanks for sharing it.

I'd like to try it. If you need a player for one of your PBEM with this option, I 'd like to play.

@Fjuri : Would you like to play such a FTF game with me ?

Mike_Evans

My one concern is a player using the ability to be closer to somebody else's home system to take them out quicker than usual. I know you can't place adjacent, but you can be one hex further away, right? If L1z1x plops their HS down next to somebody fragile, I worry about the repercussions.

Otherwise, I absolutly love the idea.

Retillion

Where can I find the Shattered Ascension rules ?

Nehkrimah

Where can I find the Shattered Ascension rules ?

you can find them here:
http://www.fantasyfl...s/list/656.page

There's also a link to a download in Psi-Coma's Sig, not sure if there's any differences yet, taking a look at it now.

Retillion

Thanks, Nehkrimah.

I think that there be might something unbalanced with this Star by Star option.
I think that the first and the last player would be favoured during the galaxy's construction because those two players are the only ones who can place two systems in a row. A good strategy for those players could be two place their best system next to a very good location - for example next to one or even more very good system(s) - and then to place their HS in next to there.

Any thoughts ?

Retillion

Anyway, I will try this option in one of my next FTF games.

PsiComa

obsidian wrote:Sounds interesting to say the least!

When you have played this, what changes to your setup strategy do you notice? Do players drop their garbage at the beginning, hope to draw out someone's HS, then place theirs at the first opportune time? Or do they place their good stuff and hope to get there? Or place the HS ASAP so they can drop their good stuff next to it? etc.

Very different, actually. If you have good tiles on hand you will probably dish out a "just okay" system first and see if you get to dump your HS there. And when your home is placed it's easier to surprise the others with the best systems. If your hand of tiles is bad you will of course try dump your home wherever you see the "just okay" planets come out.

But much more importantly, which may also answer Mike's question to certain degree, is that you MUST consider which races that are remaining before placing. If you have Sol and still not know where Moll Primus (Mentak) will be, you should stall your placement or place yourself at a safe place.

In the situation however, when Mentak DOES manage to start close to Sol, it has most times worked out very well. First of all, you may not activate enemy HS's the first round, which is actually possible with WarfareII in normal games. So you will naturally send your carriers another direction instead of being Cruiser food. So you will then have a round to build on, which does even out starting differences a bit. For example, Sol would in this case either deal with Mentak, give them a TG and one of their good Trade Agreements, or invest in a few PDS that would make the Mentak cruisers un-eager to attack. Then you have the diplomat with PDS and stuff, causing an early conquest of Sol to cost several CC, ships, and all in all set Mentak back compared to other races on the board.

So the conclusion is in my experience that yes, you MAY end up with an undesirable starting location if another player goes in for it instead of prioritizing other things. But even in such cases (all so far), it has worked well out with diplomacy and the fact that the stronger race would spend too much time and resources on early conquest. As a side note, the mean distance between HS's in Star by Star is longer than normal, so most of the time it will be pretty chill.


PsiComa

Retillion wrote:Thanks, Nehkrimah.

I think that there be might something unbalanced with this Star by Star option.
I think that the first and the last player would be favoured during the galaxy's construction because those two players are the only ones who can place two systems in a row. A good strategy for those players could be two place their best system next to a very good location - for example next to one or even more very good system(s) - and then to place their HS in next to there.

Any thoughts ?


I think this unbalancedness more or less applies to normal games as well, but yes, you may be right. I havent given that so much thought actually.

I'm considering streamlining it a bit to remove this effect; If you go clock-wise all the time, and you may place a tile in any ring you will as long as it connects to another tile. That way the galaxy could initially expand one direction from Mecatol and later fill out the rest.

What would be the resulst of this? Thoughts?

PsiComa

Nehkrimah wrote:
Where can I find the Shattered Ascension rules ?

you can find them here:
http://www.fantasyfl...s/list/656.page

There's also a link to a download in Psi-Coma's Sig, not sure if there's any differences yet, taking a look at it now.

It has a few good thoughts coming up, but just details and nothing is actually changed yet.


Retillion wrote:Hi, everybody !

PsiComa, your Star by Star idea seems great !
Thanks for sharing it.

I'd like to try it. If you need a player for one of your PBEM with this option, I 'd like to play.

That's kinda strange, as I actually sent you a PM and asked you for a week or two ago :P

Danger Man

Another suggestion is to have a rule that the two systems you place in a row can't be next to eachother.

PsiComa

Yeah, actually that's a pretty good rule.

Much easier to remember too, than the original rule that prevents placement of two blanks in a row, a rule you strictly don't need in SbS. Which is another advantage.

Mike_Evans

Danger Man wrote:Another suggestion is to have a rule that the two systems you place in a row can't be next to eachother.
I love the idea.

I do think the "no activating home systems on turn 1" is probably a good enough rule to help keep aggressors from overwhelming the weaklings. I really want to play some games to try some of this stuff! Beren, hurry up and graduate so you can come back to btown!

Danger Man

http://www.ti3wiki.o...e=Redshift_PBeM

Watch this game if you want to see the results of having close home systems

Retillion

PsiComa wrote :

That's kinda strange, as I actually sent you a PM and asked you for a week or two ago :P

Yes you are right but I don't feel to play as a replacement player, at least at the moment.
I should have written an answer to you.

PsiComa

Danger Man wrote:http://www.ti3wiki.org/index.php?title=Redshift_PBeM

Watch this game if you want to see the results of having close home systems



This game (that was pre-made - not with SbS) is extreme, though. 8 races on only 3 rings whereas 4 is normal. But very interesting. I do like the great impact every move has on other players, and the system for bidding for starting location in the start.
I'll keep the map layout in my game box for possible future uses of the 'Redshift Scenario'.

Here is another game using Star by Star.

http://www.ti3wiki.o...ightLegacy_PBeM

Paul_Lazax

Darn!

I wish I had seen this thread before this past weekend. We'd definitely have given this a shot.

I'll be up for trying this out whenever I get another chance to play.

Acebob

Danger Man wrote:Another suggestion is to have a rule that the two systems you place in a row can't be next to eachother.

I like that.

-Acebob

PsiComa

What about also letting tile-placement float so you can place at any ring as long as it connects to another tile? That way each of the 8 players have a CHANCE to start next to Mecatol too (if they should want this). It also opens for more choices during placement.

Actually, I don't see the very reason for the ring-completion rule except that it's easier for new players to understand where they can place.

Thoughts?

bnorton916

How would this concept play out with an extra ring but with still six players?

Bill

PsiComa

It would play out really fantastic. Actually, I recommend you to try just that. You'll have more places to expand without necessarily bring HS's and Mecatol further away, and have more choices on how to place your home world. I think an expanded galaxy with this option is for the better without slowing the game (in most cases), and you get more variation.

Danger Man

How did it go?

PsiComa

That's a bonus feature. You may skip this rule. It's only to prevent ALL planets from landing along the edge of the map, in normal game set-up.

magicoctopus

We tested this with my group in our last game. We agreed that this option greatly enhances the game.

Firstly, we played a 5-player game. With this option there is no need to give any TGs to anyone at the start.

Secondly, negotiations/politics/aggression started already at the setup! This makes the game very interesting.

All in all, the board becomes more dynamic with this method. A refreshing new twist to the game!

johnnylump

It went quite well ... we played 5 player, 4 ring, so everyone started with a wealth of 11 tiles plus their home system. We played free location of home system, and you only have to place a tile next to an already placed tile, so no place-by-rings. We didn't use snaking turns; instead, at the conclusion, players 4 and 5 placed a "C" wormhole anywhere on the map that wasn't a home system or inaccessible tile.

We kept place-a-planetary system after placing a planetless one, but I agree there really isn't a need for it with these setup rules.

It's tough to decide to be the first to throw down your home system ... you feel like everyone will pile on with their red and blank tiles that. But everyone liked the organic galaxy -- felt more "real."

The Jol-Nar player got a brutal lesson early; he placed his home system fourth, in the third ring, three hexes from his nearest neighbor, the Mentak. Safe enough. But the Letnev player -- the only one still holding his home system -- placed on the fourth ring, just two hexes from the Jol-Nar.

We got through two full rounds (we play on Vassal); at the start of the third, Letnev controls the planet Nar and is blockading the system. The Jol-Nar government-in-exile is now on Zohbat; forced to continually take Diplomacy while trying to rebuild.

So it seems if you are a weaker starting race you may have to wait to place your home system until the warrior races have thrown down and you can find a nice, safe corner.

Hard to say who has the advantage now. The Norr and the Saar have a nice backyard of planets that are harder to reach by the other players, but if the Letnev eliminate the Jolnar they should be in good shape too.

Cheers,
JL

PsiComa

Thanks, both of you for trying this out.

Johnnylump; How exactly did Jol Nar get mashed away? Since they start with a Dreadnought, 2*PDS and easy accessible combat tech, and are immune to activation during the first round, I'm interested in how even Letnev managed to take their Home System that early. Did Jol Nar try to offer them their 3-trade agreement? Did they try to get the Diplomacy Strategy? Build enough defense? Of course, Letnev has enormous early game potential, but if they couldn't be bribed away, I'm sure it cost them a lot to invade Jol/Nar system.

However, you're right about the fact that a weaker race should be very careful to place their homeworld when strong races remain.

Did anyone live next to Mecatol?

johnnylump

Psi -- Thanks for coming up with this variant!

Here's the map at the beginning of the 3rd turn.
Map

Nobody put next to MR; we had one 2nd ringer, three 3rd ringers and one 4th ringer.

Basically, the Jol-Nar -- our newest player -- played poorly, and the Letnev player, the most aggressive guy among us, focused entirely on attacking him. The metagame is that everybody now feels bad for the new guy. But the new guy isn't helping himself by refusing to beg for mercy.

In round 1, Letnev took Warfare I, and Jol-Nar took Diplomacy II. Jol-Nar moved quickly to take Bereg and Lirta IV, and Letnev went for Lisis and Velnor. Saardak played production, and Letnev built a second Dreadnought. Jol-Nar built a carrier and two ground forces. Letnev Warfared Lisis and Velnor, and Jol-Nar used Dip to take Zohbat instead of protecting his new system.

Letnev then hit Bereg and Lirta IV with 2 Dreadnoughts, a Destroyer, and a Carrier with Ground Forces, destroying the poor-rolling Jol-Nar's Dreadnought, Carrier and Fighter, and taking only a DN damage.

Tech (played by me, the Saar) came late, so Jol-Nar's Deep Space Cannon's didn't do any good.

Round 2, Letnev took Leadership and Jol-Nar took Diplomacy. Letnev struck immediately, killing Jol-Nar's carrier and invading Nar and destroying the Jol-Nar's spacedock.

Part of why the Letnev player placed near Jol-Nar is that he picks his Strat card immediately before the squids.

As for trade, Mentak took it in Round 1 and didn't allow Jol-Nar to offer his 3 to anyone but him. Jol-Nar traded his 1 for Saar's 1. No one took Trade in Round 2.

Mushroom

I will definitely be trying out the Star by star system.

Will let you know how it goes.

PsiComa

So it was a mix of thoughtless playing and unluck in a bad starting position, then. I wonder why Jol Nar would invest in a third carrier that early instead of making themselves a less tempting target..

jonny.deathstar

Hi - this looks like a really interesting variant.

Has anyone tried Star by Star with Simulated Early Turns? My group prefers SET and it would be hard to argue them out of it.

Cheers,
-j.

PsiComa

I have validated and approved Star by Star for a game of Twilight, not an inaccurate simulation of Twilight. If it works with such an abomination though, I guess is for you to discover!

Redviper

I'm playing in the Redshift game and this is my first time playing the Shattered Ascension rule set. There are alot of good varients in the Shattered Ascension rules, but I think Star by Star is the most interesting one and will definitly try to get my face to face group play it at our next session.

jonny.deathstar

PsiComa wrote:I have validated and approved Star by Star for a game of Twilight, not an inaccurate simulation of Twilight. If it works with such an abomination though, I guess is for you to discover!

Whoa... (ducks flying bar stool ) So I'm guessing you don't exactly like SET... no worries, there are rule options I don't like either, like Distant Suns. Heck, if your Star by Star variant works for my group - we may drop SET altogether. Hopefully I'll get a chance to give both a try soon.

PsiComa

Yup! And since you're this new I will only throw one barstool at you for using SET. If you still do after some months, on the other hand...

I think though, that Star by Star (and some other stuff from my rules like 3 starting PO's and VP-aquired race tech) will launch the session into the "meat of the game" a lot sooner than normal games where it stagnates after everyone has claimed their galactic cone.

If this is true, you won't need SET to get to the "meat of the game".

jonny.deathstar

Yup! And since you're this new I will only throw one barstool at you for using SET. If you still do after some months, on the other hand...

[ runs-off to build an in system BDS (Barstool Defense System)]

I'm in danger of going off topic but game stagnation is exactly why we started using SET, tossed Distant Suns, and added some house rules about map building to put the best systems near the center of the galaxy (mostly carried over from our TI2 days... we are pretty late coming to TI3).

Are the other rules you mention in the "Shattered Ascension" option I found the other day? I haven't read it yet.

Cheers,
-j.

edit: spelling mistake

MOther

PsiComa wrote:The new extra rules added when using this option is:
-You may not activate another HS during the first round of play.
-Muaat is a distant rim system and must be placed in the outer ring.
-Double the custodians on Mecatol (to not make it over tempting to jump mecatol too soon for those who live close. But then again, this could also be a regulation that is strictly not needed!)
-Neighbors are the two closest HS's to yours. If more are equally close, you choose before the game start.

Star by Star looks very promising

Psi How does it effect Muaat that they have to be placed in the outer ring? Would you also care to give an insight to your reason for doing this?

PsiComa

Two reasons. Muaat's early game threat potential is restricted, as is the the easiness for them to invade Mecatol first round. I think starting next to Mecatol will benefit Muaat more than other races, and at the same time I think it FITS them better to be a distant shadow on the rim of the galaxy

And this applies specifically in SA, where all Domain Counter units is regarded like plastics, so it's actually possibly to bombard custodian installations.

PsiComa

New wording;

Using this game option, the galaxy is built with Home Systems free at
the hand instead of fixed starting locations. Yellow-bordered systems
follow the same rules as red-bordered systems for adjacent
placement. Players placing two systems in a row may
not place such two systems adjacent. It is no longer
required to complete a ring before placing a tile
in the adjacent ring, but a tile must always be
placed next to another existing tile. Also, it’s
no longer required to place a planet after
placing a blank tile. Muaat may only be
placed in the rim (outermost ring).

In a game with Star by Star, no Home
System may be activated by an enemy
during the first round. The Mecatol
Custodians must be in play.


-------------------

One question I got now is this; Is it now necessary to have the alternating placement order 1-2-3-3-2-1-1-2 etc, instead of circular 1-2-3-1-2-3?
At the moment I don't really know. What do you think?

sigmazero13

Just out of curiosity, is it possible that future versions of Shattered Ascension will be available in PDF format, and not just the extremely large JPG files?

johnnylump

In our game with this we had no complaints about circular. Before artifact placement, we allowed the last two players to place to also place "C" wormholes on any non-home, non-MR system on the board. A "C" wormhole also went on the Nexus.

For what it's worth, every game going forward with 5+ players will use the star-by-star rules. Haven't tried it on a 3-ring board yet. Recommended?

PsiComa

sigmazero13 wrote:Just out of curiosity, is it possible that future versions of Shattered Ascension will be available in PDF format, and not just the extremely large JPG files?

Very possible. 2.7 were available in PDF, and so will 2.9. I just haven't had the time yet.

PsiComa

johnnylump wrote:In our game with this we had no complaints about circular
.

Yeah, that's what I thought. In that case I would have it go circular instead of adding the extra rule about 2-tile successive placement..

For what it's worth, every game going forward with 5+ players will use the star-by-star rules.
I guess it fell into taste, then?

Haven't tried it on a 3-ring board yet. Recommended?

Yes. in the beginning I thought Star by Star wouldn't have much give or take for smaller maps, but after more testing it's clear I was wrong.

Here's a map (though with 8 instead of 6!) on only three rings. It was an awesome game.

johnnylump

Yep, everyone liked it. More organic and more strategy -- what's not to like? No one put the HS next to MR (is that survivable?) so players held their nice planets for a while. Pushed a lot of the good stuff to the outside of the board.

With circular, we did talk about re-rolling a new Speaker after the board was built but before the first Strategy Phase.

sigmazero13

PsiComa wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:Just out of curiosity, is it possible that future versions of Shattered Ascension will be available in PDF format, and not just the extremely large JPG files?

Very possible. 2.7 were available in PDF, and so will 2.9. I just haven't had the time yet.
Where can I find 2.7? Your signature only has the 2.9 PDFs?

PsiComa

I've had the 2.7 PDF in my signature for like a year, just deleted it

Just think of the 2.9 jpg like a scratch-version. There are actually a few things I'll update for the PDF, so..

Goblin15

Just saying that i realy like the rules . I like lots of rules but my group dont like it so its to bad i cant play white alle of em...

Star by star is neato. Only problem we came acros is if we build the map by ourself and dont play white pre galaxy its bound to get som lucky player a bit alone.

PsiComa

That's true in a sense. If you go about it circular, you are always just before and just after the very same players. If you alternate back and forth you will get some change and can for example deal with two different players about placing before you.

Stefan

That's right what I meant.

PsiComa

Other than that it's not as critically important as in Settlers of Catan, where the first player will simply pick the best spot, 2nd player picks the second best and so on.

So I think both ways would work fairly well, but since there are a theoretical gain that we just discussed, and that the original rules already are that way, I am leaning towards keeping the wording from yesterday.

cheezegromit

I gotta say Psicoma....I actually think it's the single best rule mod to date
It just allows to much more strategy at the beginning and.....even if you have totally pimped out planets you know that you are not going to be able to use them all therefore you use them to tempt others to fight

PsiComa

Exactly

sigmazero13

I haven't tried the Star-By-Star rule yet, but I do have to admit, it's one of the few rules mods that I'm interested in trying on a regular basis.

For whatever that's worth

PsiComa

Well, I think you would consider this more of a variant (which you like) than an actual "rule mod".
You even CONSIDERING to go for 2-dice dreads (and the following package) is much more incredible

magicoctopus

I have some questions about this variant:


  • How many rings are best for different number of players? Mainly 5- or 6-player games?

  • If playing with 4 rings and 5 players, one must have extra empty/red hexes (that is, either some homemade ones or another set of the game), since otherwise all systems will be in play. Have you calculated an ideal number of planet tiles in this setup?

  • With what number of players has the variant been playtested with?


  • Thanks in advance!

    PsiComa

    magicoctopus wrote:I have some questions about this variant:


  • How many rings are best for different number of players? Mainly 5- or 6-player games?

  • I personally think the number of rings should differ little from the suggestions in the rule-book. It may be fun with larger galaxies, but (especially with just core rules) the game may go a little slowly if it's too much room to expand for everyone.

  • If playing with 4 rings and 5 players, one must have extra empty/red hexes (that is, either some homemade ones or another set of the game), since otherwise all systems will be in play. Have you calculated an ideal number of planet tiles in this setup?
  • As mentioned above, I think 3 rings should be more than enough for 4-5 players. I personally have two sets, so I have added all nameless tiles from the second set to my box (blanks, novas, nebulas, wormholes etc), and I really think that any extra tiles should be planetless or reds. It seems this game is more than abundant enough on resources as it stands.

    (if you don't have extra tiles and want to play on 4 rings, you may use a mediocre Home System as the last tile, preferably with the races starting units as passive defenders)

  • With what number of players has the variant been playtested with?
  • 3-8, guessing 15-20 games (don't always use this setup). The strength of this variant is that it naturally evens out all the #players problems with the original setup's requirements of symmetry, so it's much more flexible with numbers of players and rings.

    cheezegromit

    Johnnylump wrote: No one put the HS next to MR (is that survivable?)

    We shall see Johnny......It's not looking good though
    http://ti3wiki.org/i...Deep_Space_PBeM

    haslo

    Another point about 1-2-3-4-4-3-2-1-1-2... is that everybody does, like that, get to place two systems in a fairly short timespan from time to time. Like that, there is such a thing as a good time to place the HS, when you know you're gonna be up pretty soon again and can help your HS out with a good second system.

    When just going circular, it's always "5 other tiles until I can place my next one", and it's way easier to screw up HS placement.

    @cheeze, I really feel bad about that HS of yours there Maybe you can bribe one or two of your fellow players into giving you a good system next to you?

    PsiComa

    Good point about the placement, Haslo.


    There's still more empty room around him though. I think he will do just fine. And Yin getting a foot on Mecatol is totally worth it (flip-ability).

    I find that unusual with the current HS placement in Deep Space; people place their HS with only a single planet next to it, leaving all the rest up to chance. I would secure a better position before I place, but then again if everybody cares mostly for their own vicinity, it's the same for everyone. We'll see where it ends.

    haslo

    It certainly is interesting Particularly from a GM point of view, I see all the hands

    MOther

    I guess when the first player decides to place his HS and the next player follow shortly doing the same a trend starts. I will prefer to put my good tiles near a player that have not been party to messing up my HS rather than the ones that did - those will instead get the worst I have availebel. I think its a balance and also race dependent.

    Also how fragile a race one plays decide timing

    johnnylump

    It occurs to me that HS placement can be thematically reinforcing. If you've got good trade cards, you might feel safer placing close to the middle because you can buy off some of the greater number of potential enemies you might have than if you were out on the rim.

    It makes sense: the races closer to the middle would have access to more of the major trade lanes.

    PsiComa

    Yup! Playing Hacan I normally would have no scruples about going down in the center (though I didn't do it this particular time). With such a trade you can ward off the primary threats, as you said.
    And good point on the thematics!

    Danger Man

    There was one weakness to the current placement system that I discovered in a face to face game today. If you are on either end, you get to place two systems in a row that can't be adjacent to each other. The problem is that this makes it really hard for you to build a nice neighborhood for yourself since basically every other tile you place has to go somewhere else, even if there is plenty of room next to your system.

    The players in the middle get to place one system twice as often as you get to place two systems. And the players one spot from either end get to place a system, wait for two other systems (that cannot be adjacent), then place one other system.

    It really messed up my own HS placement, because I realized too late that I missed my chance and in this 5-player game, I would have to wait for 8 other tiles to be placed before I could place my HS. Then I had to wait for another 8 tiles before I could place a system next to it (although the system was Bereg/Lirta, so I have nothing to complain about there).

    PsiComa

    I don't know. Most of the time you may have a tile open on either side of the HS, or maybe you placed your HS with already okay planets about. In that case you don't have to place many tiles to complete the neighborhood. And you always have reds to get rid of anyway. I think we should test out this a little more in particular.

    Retillion

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:Thanks, Nehkrimah.

    I think that there be might something unbalanced with this Star by Star option.
    I think that the first and the last player would be favoured during the galaxy's construction because those two players are the only ones who can place two systems in a row. A good strategy for those players could be two place their best system next to a very good location - for example next to one or even more very good system(s) - and then to place their HS in next to there.

    Any thoughts ?


    I think this unbalancedness more or less applies to normal games as well, but yes, you may be right. I havent given that so much thought actually.

    I'm considering streamlining it a bit to remove this effect; If you go clock-wise all the time, and you may place a tile in any ring you will as long as it connects to another tile. That way the galaxy could initially expand one direction from Mecatol and later fill out the rest.

    What would be the resulst of this? Thoughts?

    @PsiComa : Could you please tell me precisely what are your final Star by Star rules ?

    For example, I have a few questions :
    1° I think that you don't allow the first and last players to place two tiles adjacent to each other. What is the precise rule ?
    2° You can't place your HS next to someone else's HS. What if you can't respect that rule ?
    3° The player who places the first tile is the Speaker, right ?
    4° How many rings are there compared to the number of players ?
    5° What if I place my HS on the other side of the table ? I suppose I should stay seated where I am (that is important for SC picking order) but isn't it uncomfortable ?

    Thank you.

    MOther

    Pardon me for answering to some of your questions.
    #2 As with redbordered systems if you have no other tiles left and no legal place to put your hs you are allowed to (following same logic as for redbordered tiles)
    #3 Yes
    #5 Order remains the same - regardless of finale placing though you need to define who is your neigbours for certain ac/pc/so - neighbours is the two players with HS closets to your HS. If a tie you decide at game start.

    PsiComa please confirm (or correct if I have misunderstood)

    PsiComa

    Retillion wrote:
    @PsiComa : Could you please tell me precisely what are your final Star by Star rules ?



    For example, I have a few questions :
    1° I think that you don't allow the first and last players to place two tiles adjacent to each other. What is
    the precise rule ?

    You go about alternating order as usual, but the players placing two in a row may not place these two adjacent.

    2° You can't place your HS next to someone else's HS. What if you can't respect that rule ?

    Same with red. If you can't respect it, you must place it next to another yellow. So it's theoretically possible for two races to start next to each other. This sounds crazy but remember a system can not be activated and many weak races have diplomats. Such an early conquest could set the stronger race back a lot compared to others on the board, so to stay competitive they both should cooperate!

    3° The player who places the first tile is the Speaker, right ?
    If this is the normal rule from the rulebook, yes

    4° How many rings are there compared to the number of players ?
    I would use the same number of rings as usual (as the rulebook recommends), but 6 players on a 4 ring variant with this version is epic indeed. This would be the maximum available space before the game will lose momentum on a much to long building/expanding period.

    5° What if I place my HS on the other side of the table ? I suppose I should stay seated where I am (that is important for SC picking order) but isn't it uncomfortable ?

    On a PBeM it has nothing to say, but yes, in f2f games youll have to be exercising a bit. Or use a stick, or have someone on the opposite side move your pieces as you command.

    PsiComa

    MOther wrote:
    PsiComa please confirm (or correct if I have misunderstood)

    Yes, that's correct. Thanks

    Retillion

    Thank you, PsiComa and MOther, for answering.

    *EDIT
    One more question : Why is Muaat a distant rim system and must, as a consequence, be placed in the outer ring ?

    jonesjoey

    I've been reading this topic, and must admit this sounds interesting. We'll play this version in our next ftf game, in 2 weeks.

    To those that have played this a few times, in a 6 player game, would you recommend playing with 3 rings or 4? There's a couple of turtles in my group, and I'm afraid they would place their HS in the 3rd ring, and just expand into the 4th ring. Thereby taking up everybody else's time while thet build, move out, repeat, repeat, etc. I'm thinking 3 rings would get them closer to the action, and thereby threatened a lot sooner in the game. Any thoughts on the number of rings from you guys?


    PsiComa

    Retillion wrote:Thank you, PsiComa and MOther, for answering.

    *EDIT
    One more question : Why is Muaat a distant rim system and must, as a consequence, be placed in the outer ring ?

    This question has been answered earlier. Its first of all to reduce Muaat's opportunities to push another race over with their supreme starting condition (War Sun +Fighter-build ability), but also because this race (with SA rules in particular) have a very easy time of taking down Mecatols custodians right off the bat.

    Fjuri

    Retillion wrote:But then, the fourth player (we were 4 players for that game) decided to place his HS in the "corner" between my girlfriend and I, 2 hexes away from me and 2 hexes away from her. He did so because he was playing Muaat and had already decided to attack my girlfriend even before the galaxy was even set
    To his defense, you were kind of telling how good the position your girlfriend had even before his location was set, so he kind of reacted to that and get into conflict with her early on.

    Retillion wrote:
    Then the rest of the galaxy was placed. The "Eldorado" was not so rich but only the player to my right could reasonably reach it because the Muaat player and my girlfriend were fighting a fierce war and I was kinda stuck between both my neighbours (I was also playing the Jol-Nar so I didn't feel comfortable starting a war with my right-neighbour).
    I still think you should and could have attacked me. And due to the map layout my other Space Dock was (literally) on the other side of the galaxy. (Lodor see below)
    It was a really odd game really, I think I was in 4 space battles max. As winnu my first conflict was on 5.5 when an Alpha wormhole was turned up from a distant sun. My second was when Muaat tried to get his SO -> destroy 2 space docks and destroyed my Lodor SD. (might have giving him reason to put his HS where it was as well btw) Third was I think when I took out 1 destroyer blocking the beta wormhole connecting Muaat and Hacan's HSs.
    Your Warsuns who got build at 2 moves away from my HS gave me worries the entire game.

    For the map:
    http://www.ti3wiki.o...ess_Battle_PBeM
    Its not complete since I can't remember all the names But the black tiles next to Mecatol where 1 planet systems and the outer rim systems around Winnu and Jol Nar's HS's where 2's. Above primor was a 1 planet system as well, the same below abyz/fria I think. Retillion can correct (or point) the mistakes I made.

    PsiComa

    Retillion wrote:
    It was because another player and I had already placed our HS's in excellent locations. But our HS's were only 2 hexes away from each other (his being on my right).
    Then the third player placed her (it was my girlfriend) HS at some 90° to my left.
    By that time the other side of the galaxy was not yet placed.
    But then, the fourth player (we were 4 players for that game) decided to place his HS in the "corner" between my girlfriend and I, 2 hexes away from me and 2 hexes away from her. He did so because he was playing Muaat and had already decided to attack my girlfriend even before the galaxy was even set (that's why I called him "a wolverine" ; of course this player has never won a game in our group.).
    Then the rest of the galaxy was placed.

    Well, if he really is a wolverine player, it's a useless player to game with whether it's a normal game or Star by Star. If everyone is not trying to win, it's no point.

    Having said that, I consider it a "legal" tactic to try and smash out another race early with superior starting strength (if this serves a VP purpose over time). But the target, whatever race always potentially have enough to bargain/strike back with to not make an early conquest worth it. And at the same time he would open his back to you, who also were two spaces away from him. You would earn greatly on him depleting ships against her, and you could fairly easily grab his HS as reward, maybe. I see you played the Jol Nar, but they have a super potential within a round or two. As soon as you have Nano you SHOULD be comfortable with mopping up a kamikaze neighbor. You also easily have Deep Space Cannons to move ahead. Jol Nar is not as weak as they appear. It's an illusion.
    However, I can NOT stress enough how important it is to play with stronger Dreadnoughts. Else War Suns in particular will be overpowered in a way that it is completely dominating viable tech paths, and makes Muaat a little too powerful out the door compared to anything other races may come up with.

    The "Eldorado" was not so rich but only the player to my right could reasonably reach it because the Muaat player and my girlfriend were fighting a fierce war and I was kinda stuck between both my neighbours (I was also playing the Jol-Nar so I didn't feel comfortable starting a war with my right-neighbour).
    Yup. 4 player games is special that way. If two players get into a blood feud, there are only two players left for serious VP race, whereas they probably start in uneven positions. More players is worth it, and as I said the Dimension Rifts game option to open the map a little more. You can find it in the "variants and extras" sheet in Shattered Ascension.

    That's why I think that maybe it is best to wait long before placing my HS.
    Yes. Depending on your race and how fast you see a potentially good position. Living close to Mecatol obviously has its advantages too.


    PsiComa wrote:
    By the way, we have houseruled that all 4 Wormholes are always in play. What's more, we always play with the Nexus.
    Good.

    Retillion

    @Fjuri :

    First of all I would like to tell you that your victory was fully deserved. No doubt about that. Congratulations.

    Fjuri wrote:
    Retillion wrote:But then, the fourth player (we were 4 players for that game) decided to place his HS in the "corner" between my girlfriend and I, 2 hexes away from me and 2 hexes away from her. He did so because he was playing Muaat and had already decided to attack my girlfriend even before the galaxy was even set
    To his defense, you were kind of telling how good the position your girlfriend had even before his location was set, so he kind of reacted to that and get into conflict with her early on.
    Yes but if I was him I would have placed my HS on the other side of Abyz / Fria (in 7.5) in your map. I think that Muaat's HS' placement was a mistake and I think that the fact that he was almost eliminated by the end of the game is a proof of that.


    Fjuri wrote:I still think you should and could have attacked me.
    Yes, you are right. But, like I said, I felt really uncomfortable to start attacking you with the Jol-Nar. Usually, I love to fight but I hate it with the Jol-Nar. As a matter of fact, I have never won a game with that race. I wanted to try Robofish' idea to get Nano Technology as early as Game Round 1 and see how it helps. The idea is great but I missed my chance : I should have attacked you but I didn't suspect you could win that fast. Again, congratulations !

    Fjuri wrote:And due to the map layout my other Space Dock was (literally) on the other side of the galaxy. (Lodor see below)
    Exactly what I was saying : you had a little more than 1/3 of the map just for you.

    Fjuri wrote:It was a really odd game really
    I agree.

    Fjuri wrote:when Muaat tried to get his SO -> destroy 2 space docks and destroyed my Lodor SD. (might have giving him reason to put his HS where it was as well btw)
    Emphasis is mine. You got a point (with emphasized sentence) but nevertheless I think that it was a mistake : if I was him, I would have placed Muaat's HS in 7.5..

    Fjuri wrote:Your Warsuns who got build at 2 moves away from my HS gave me worries the entire game.
    Yes. Again, I should have attacked you.

    Fjuri wrote:For the map:
    http://www.ti3wiki.o...ess_Battle_PBeM
    Its not complete since I can't remember all the names But the black tiles next to Mecatol where 1 planet systems and the outer rim systems around Winnu and Jol Nar's HS's where 2's. Above primor was a 1 planet system as well, the same below abyz/fria I think. Retillion can correct (or point) the mistakes I made.
    Your memory is great, Fjuri ! Thanks for drawing the map on the wiki. It helps to understand the situation.


    The point of my first post was that I now think that one should not place his HS too early with the "Star by Star" option. I now think that my biggest mistake in that game was my early placement of Bereg / Lirta IV system, which obliged me to place next my HS next to it.

    P.S. : Fjuri, we will play on Sunday November 2 and on Thursday November 6. You are welcome.

    PsiComa

    Yes, thanks for the illustration, Fjuri

    Retillion: I think I wrote my post simultaneously with yours, in case you missed it.

    Retillion

    PsiComa wrote:Well, if he really is a wolverine player, it's a useless player to game with whether it's a normal game or Star by Star. If everyone is not trying to win, it's no point.
    I disagree with you, PsiComa : it's difficult to gather at leat 4 players for a whole game day. So I prefer a game with 3 good players and 1 wolverine than no game.

    What's more, that player is a wolverine "only" every other game.

    Finally, he's a very long time friend : I've been knowing him for more than 20 years. So it's a pleasure to meet him.

    PsiComa wrote:Having said that, I consider it a "legal" tactic to try and smash out another race early with superior starting strength (if this serves a VP purpose over time).
    I fully agree.

    PsiComa wrote:I see you played the Jol Nar, but they have a super potential within a round or two. As soon as you have Nano you SHOULD be comfortable with mopping up a kamikaze neighbor. You also easily have Deep Space Cannons to move ahead. Jol Nar is not as weak as they appear. It's an illusion.
    I suppose that you are right but I just seem to be unable to win with these guys, although I have already won with every other race. Maybe they don't fit well with my play style : I love to threaten, exort and fight. That -1 to Combat Rolls is just a pain in the @$$.

    Mike_Evans

    There's no shame in playing certain races less well than others. For example, I'm nearly hopeless with Sol and Saar while Bismark and Lothar are whizzes with them, respectively.

    PsiComa

    Retillion wrote:
    I disagree with you, PsiComa : it's difficult to gather at leat 4 players for a whole game day. So I prefer a game with 3 good players and 1 wolverine than no game.
    What's more, that player is a wolverine "only" every other game.
    Finally, he's a very long time friend : I've been knowing him for more than 20 years. So it's a pleasure to meet him.

    I meant "useless" more in terms of contributing directly to an ideal game, or to playtest a certain game variant like Star by Star. Of course you would invite an old friend over nontheless.


    I suppose that you are right but I just seem to be unable to win with these guys, although I have already won with every other race. Maybe they don't fit well with my play style : I love to threaten, exort and fight. That -1 to Combat Rolls is just a pain in the @$$.
    Yeah, but Jol Nar's other strengths greatly outdoes a miss per tenth combat roll.. You should've kicked his ass!

    Stefan

    We played a four-player-game with a random galaxy setup (we like this variant; just as it is with star-by-star, expect all tiles are mixed and then layed down around Mecatol in rings, so everything is up to chance) the other day in which I came up next to Mecatol with Sol, with only ONE other planet system adjacent to my HS. Still, I won ^^ There is no guarantee that sitting next to MR gives you the creeps.

    PsiComa

    Star by Star russian roulette version Sounds amazing that you won in that position, but. Heck, everything is possible!

    Stefan

    Yeah, we had two very passive players, and my other neighbour, the Norr, fought one of them constantly... Sometimes you need luck.

    Retillion

    After a few games of playtesting PsiComa's "Star by Star" option, I came to the conclusion that I don't like it !

    This conclusion makes me a little sad because I found, at first sight, that the concept of free Home System location was great.

    Here are the reasons why I don't like that option :

    1° First of all, I have found, surprinsingly, that I have much less control on the construction of the galaxy, even though I have the choice for 1 more tile placement.
    I have found that it is best not to place too quickly my HS to avoid that the galaxy gets too imbalanced. That is possible when one, or more, opponents place their HS on some weird location, possibly favourable for them.
    I have also found that it is not so easy to plan the construction of the galaxy. I mean, when I know where all Home systems are (i.e. : without using that option), I find it much more possible to plan where to place Wormholes efficiently, where to place some awful system or how to secure an excellent system for myself.

    2° I find that that option changes the balance of the races. Some of them being really stronger or, on the contrary, weaker.

    3° It messes up the game a little more when it is time to know whose turn it is and who is your neighbour. I know that's only true for beginners but I think beginners should be taken into account.

    On contrary, I have found that that option avoids that a player gets screwed because it only had bad tiles in his hand. That is especially true when playing Sardakk N'orr.

    @PsiComa : I am sorry that I do not like your idea. Especially because usually I appreciate very much your work and opinions about the game.

    I would be very pleased to read a constructive comment of some players who don't share my opinion about "Star by Star" because I wouldn't want to simply abandon that option forever.

    PsiComa

    Retillion wrote:
    1° First of all, I have found, surprinsingly, that I have much less control on the construction of the galaxy, even though I have the choice for 1 more tile placement.
    Yes, but that's because OTHER PLAYERS can influence your situation, not lucky pickings.

    I have found that it is best not to place too quickly my HS to avoid that the galaxy gets too imbalanced.
    Why? Wouldn't it good to for example start close to Mecatol some times?

    That is possible when one, or more, opponents place their HS on some weird location, possibly favourable for them.
    Sorry, please elaborate. I'm not sure what you meant here.

    I have also found that it is not so easy to plan the construction of the galaxy. I mean, when I know where all Home systems are (i.e. : without using that option), I find it much more possible to plan where to place Wormholes efficiently, where to place some awful system or how to secure an excellent system for myself.
    When using Star by Star everyone should hold onto their wormholes until they have sufficeint information about their galaxy! It ALL COMES DOWN TO CHOICES MADE BY PLAYERS.

    2° I find that that option changes the balance of the races. Some of them being really stronger or, on the contrary, weaker.
    When it's impossible to activate HS's first round, I completely disagree. Please come with an example, and I can tell you what the "weaker" race should've done. Ask ANY of the players in Redshift / Redshift II, an ultra tight Star by Star -like matchup. Even Sol did EXTREMELY well.

    3° It messes up the game a little more when it is time to know whose turn it is and who is your neighbour. I know that's only true for beginners but I think beginners should be taken into account.
    There's only ONE card in the entire game that uses the term NEIGHBOR. And that is Merciless, a card that really should say ANY PLAYER. Immediate left or right is the normal wording, and that would be your player to the left or your player to the right around the table.

    On contrary, I have found that that option avoids that a player gets screwed because it only had bad tiles in his hand. That is especially true when playing Sardakk N'orr.
    Especially true for Norr, what?? Please explain.


    @PsiComa : I am sorry that I do not like your idea. Especially because usually I appreciate very much your work and opinions about the game.
    I would be very pleased to read a constructive comment of some players who don't share my opinion about "Star by Star" because I wouldn't want to simply abandon that option forever.

    What I take from this is; Star by Star is difficult. It's hardcore. It needs training. And you or some of your players have met the wall from not having enough experience. On your limited explanations, that's what I take from it.

    Mike_Evans

    I might respond to some of the other points brought up, but the one that leaped out at me was:

    It messes up the game a little more when it is time to know whose turn it is and who is your neighbour. I know that's only true for beginners but I think beginners should be taken into account.

    But Retillion's issue of "whose turn is when," I would say that players should simply determine roughly what order they should sit in. If two hexes are in the same row, roll a die to see who sits to the left and who sits on the right. Then secondaries simply go in order around the table. The "Player to my left and right" Objectives, for example, are based on that. (And I don't like those objectives anyway)

    Retillion

    @Psicoma : I am a little bit surprised by the tone of your answer. Don't have I the right not to like something that you love ? Do you feel attacked because I don't like one of your creations ?

    I will try to answer you point by point :

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:
    1° First of all, I have found, surprinsingly, that I have much less control on the construction of the galaxy, even though I have the choice for 1 more tile placement.
    Yes, but that's because OTHER PLAYERS can influence your situation, not lucky pickings.
    I'm not discussing the cause, I'm describing a fact that I have noticed.

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:I have found that it is best not to place too quickly my HS to avoid that the galaxy gets too imbalanced.
    Why? Wouldn't it good to for example start close to Mecatol some times?
    If that is true, only 2 or 3 players are given that option. And those who get that option only receive it thanks to the roll of a die. And that would be a problem

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:That is possible when one, or more, opponents place their HS on some weird location, possibly favourable for them.
    Sorry, please elaborate.
    Have you really forgotten that you and I have both posted about that question only 5 days ago in this thread ? Fjuri even drew on the wiki part of the galaxy in question for more clarifications.

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:I have also found that it is not so easy to plan the construction of the galaxy. I mean, when I know where all Home systems are (i.e. : without using that option), I find it much more possible to plan where to place Wormholes efficiently, where to place some awful system or how to secure an excellent system for myself.
    When using Star by Star everyone should hold onto their wormholes until they have sufficeint information about their galaxy! It ALL COMES DOWN TO CHOICES MADE BY PLAYERS.
    1° In the normal galaxy construction, (almost) every tile placed is also a choice.
    2° Is choice always good ? I don't think so when everybody gets the right to choose. For example, the French have chosen Sarkozy for president, and the Americans have chosen George W. Bush for president. Did those choices prove to be so good ? Unless these were not choices...

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:2° I find that that option changes the balance of the races. Some of them being really stronger or, on the contrary, weaker.
    When it's impossible to activate HS's first round, I completely disagree. Please come with an example, and I can tell you what the "weaker" race should've done. Ask ANY of the players in Redshift / Redshift II, an ultra tight Star by Star -like matchup. Even Sol did EXTREMELY well.
    Well, you should agree. As a proof : YOU have ruled that the Muaat must locate their HS in the last ring because otherwise they would be too strong.
    Another example : what do you think of the placement of the Magen Protectorate's HS next to Mecatol Rex ?

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:3° It messes up the game a little more when it is time to know whose turn it is and who is your neighbour. I know that's only true for beginners but I think beginners should be taken into account.
    There's only ONE card in the entire game that uses the term NEIGHBOR. And that is Merciless, a card that really should say ANY PLAYER.
    You are WRONG, Psicoma : the 3 VP's influence PO uses the term NEIGHBOR.
    What's more, I wrote :
    It messes up the game a little more when it is time to know whose turn it is
    The turn order is important when it is time :
    1° to pick a strategy Card.
    2° to play the Secondary abilities of Strategy Card.

    PsiComa wrote:Immediate left or right is the normal wording, and that would be your player to the left or your player to the right around the table.
    That doesn't make sense to me. You should compete with your neighbour and not to the player who just happens to be seated next to you.
    What if I want to sit next to my girlfriend ?
    What if I don't want to sit next to a player whose smell I don't like ?

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:On the contrary, I have found that that option avoids that a player gets screwed because it only had bad tiles in his hand. That is especially true when playing Sardakk N'orr.
    Especially true for Norr, what?? Please explain.
    I have seen many times that Sardakk N'orr can't develop well when they don't have enough resources next to their HS.

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:
    @PsiComa : I am sorry that I do not like your idea. Especially because usually I appreciate very much your work and opinions about the game.
    I would be very pleased to read a constructive comment of some players who don't share my opinion about "Star by Star" because I wouldn't want to simply abandon that option forever.

    What I take from this is; Star by Star is difficult. It's hardcore. It needs training. And you or some of your players have met the wall from not having enough experience. On your limited explanations, that's what I take from it.
    It is true that I don't have as much experience as yourself of Star by Star. Should that prevent me of having a temporary opinion ? As a matter of fact, when I posted my previous message, I was hoping to get some constructive advice because I love your concept but, so far, I didn't like to play it.
    And you know what ? I like so much your idea that I would love to keep playing with it !
    PsiComa, try to undestand me please : time is precious, I have a baby girl, a girlfriend, a social life, a part-time job and I climb mountains as well. As a consequence, my disappointment is too important when I feel that I have "wasted" a game. And maybe I've have wasted it because I played it bad. That's why I posted here : to get some constructive opinion. To get advices, possibly from you.

    Like I wrote :
    @PsiComa : I am sorry that I do not like your idea. Especially because usually I appreciate very much your work and opinions about the game.
    I would be very pleased to read a constructive comment of some players who don't share my opinion about "Star by Star" because I wouldn't want to simply abandon that option forever.
    And I started my previous posted with :
    After a few games of playtesting PsiComa's "Star by Star" option, I came to the conclusion that I don't like it !

    This conclusion makes me a little sad because I found, at first sight, that the concept of free Home System location was great.

    Mike_Evans

    I didn't get a feel of a "bad" vibe from PsiComa's post at all, but you seemed to, Retillion. And yet you have accused me of being sensitive.... ?

    Retillion

    Mike_Evans wrote:I didn't get a feel of a "bad" vibe from PsiComa's post at all, but you seemed to, Retillion. And yet you have accused me of being sensitive.... ?

    Is that your constructive answer about my post ?

    I would be pleased, Mike, to read your opinion about my comment about the "Star by Star" option.

    Mike_Evans

    Uh, I posted it above....? Before your own response to Psi?

    PsiComa

    I had to run earlier this evening, so I had to answer short and effective. It had NO bad vibes what so ever from my side. If you took that as an attack, I don't know what to say. ..really.

    I might have put one line in the wrong way, when I said you needed more experience to not end up in the trouble you briefly were describing. I meant more experience with Star by Star in particular, not the game generally. I have no idea how pro a player you are.

    I'll follow up the discussion soon.

    PS; it' seems you missed one of Mike's posts up there.

    Retillion

    PsiComa wrote:It had NO bad vibes what so ever from my side. If you took that as an attack, I don't know what to say.
    I didn't feel attacked. I thought you had felt attacked.
    Indeed, I wrote :
    @Psicoma : I am a little bit surprised by the tone of your answer. Don't have I the right not to like something that you love ? Do you feel attacked because I don't like one of your creations ?
    So, it seems we were both wrong to believe that the other one felt attacked. Fine ! I'm glad that everybody feels good.

    When you have some time, please give me some practical advice about how to place my tiles when I play "Star by Star".

    PsiComa

    If that is true, only 2 or 3 players are given that option. And those who get that option only receive it thanks to the roll of a die. And that would be a problem
    Only two people get an option of starting next to Mecatol? Then you aren't playing by my rules. Sorry, friend.

    Have you really forgotten that you and I have both posted about that question only 5 days ago in this thread ? Fjuri even drew on the wiki part of the galaxy in question for more clarifications.
    Oh yeah, NOW I remember. And I THOROUGHLY explained why that situation worked out as it did. Have you really forgotten that?

    I don't think so when everybody gets the right to choose. For example, the French have chosen Sarkozy for president, and the Americans have chosen George W. Bush for president. Did those choices prove to be so good ? Unless these were not choices...
    Sorry, I'm not going into philosophy and politics with this.
    But if you do not like choices in games, I can recommend a few to you

    Well, you should agree. As a proof : YOU have ruled that the Muaat must locate their HS in the last ring because otherwise they would be too strong.
    Another example : what do you think of the placement of the Magen Protectorate's HS next to Mecatol Rex ?
    In SA, all domain counters are treated as regular plastic, so you can bombard the **** out of them. Muaat are SPECIAL in a way that they begin with a unit they do not have the pre-requisites for, and thereb happen to be able to bombard custodians etc to smithereens. But that rule isn't important, but it makes it easier to avoid having a War Sun right outside your door at round 2, move 1. I thought Muaat in particular was a fair race to keep slightly more apart, but it doesn't prove anything. If you want you may play without this rule, and it'll work.
    I regret I even wrote it. Gaaah. I won't comment on Magen Protectorate. I have never playtested this race. I don't even know exactly what they do.

    You are WRONG, Psicoma : the 3 VP's influence PO uses the term NEIGHBOR.
    But it is clarified with ("PLAYER TO THE IMMEDIATE RIGHT OR LEFT!!!!!!!!!!!!") Drop the neighbor term altogether, sheesh!

    The turn order is important when it is time :
    1° to pick a strategy Card.
    2° to play the Secondary abilities of Strategy Card.
    Yes, this goes exactly as the original does. Clockwise around the table. Can't be simpler than that.

    I have seen many times that Sardakk N'orr can't develop well when they don't have enough resources next to their HS.
    If anything, Sardakk Norr has an ADVANTAGE in a game like this. They can use their Deep Space Cannons to push away opponents earlier, and protect the PDS with Generals. Again, if you have seen Norr lose as a subject to closer starting position, you have seen a (may I?) green player play. And I have never said that Star by Star is newbie friendly. It's not. It requires a WHOLE NEW SKILL LEVEL.
    Besides, Star by Star is a Shattered Ascension game option, which means that it is balanced as SA. If it works just as good with normal rules I have no idea (we're trying in Deep Space PBeM and so far everyone's having a good time).

    PsiComa, try to undestand me please : time is precious, I have a baby girl, a girlfriend, a social life, a part-time job and I climb mountains as well. As a consequence, my disappointment is too important when I feel that I have "wasted" a game. And maybe I've have wasted it because I played it bad. That's why I posted here : to get some constructive opinion. To get advices, possibly from you.
    And I hope I can give you those advices. But to be honest I think you are the one coming with a tone and an attitude here. That's why this post might have sounded harsh to. But you know I always fight fire with fire. But let's calm down, and no hard feelings. You are entitled to enjoy exactly what you like.

    I'll say this. If Star by Star does not work out for you gaming group, then simply don't use it. I can try to give you advice on the particular problems you have, but they have to be discussed more precisely and in a lot calmer way than this.



    PsiComa

    If you want specific advices on how to place your tiles, I would need to know what your race is, what the other races are, how many players, galaxy rings, how the other players place...

    It's hard to write a cookbook about it, and that fact in particular makes Star by Star so great. Galaxy processing the original way is based 95% on lucky hand draw, and the rest no-brainer "Good systems in your galactic pie, bad systems in opponents galactic pies". Done.


    Here we used Star by Star: http://www.ti3wiki.o...ightLegacy_PBeM
    It was really an intense and lovely game. Really alive on all political fronts and a lot of action all the time.

    Check also out Deep Space and the Redshift maps.

    Fjuri

    I think, as with any strategic addition, some getting used to will be needed. Our first game (as said above) resulted in a highly randomized map. The more it will be used, the more the options will become clear and the more the map will be a result of the player's real choices.

    That said I'd prefer not reading tactica since I prefer learning on my own. (Its just a game after all, what fun is there if you followed a prescribed tactic..)

    PsiComa

    Well put, Fjuri.

    Retillion

    PsiComa wrote:
    If that is true, only 2 or 3 players are given that option. And those who get that option only receive it thanks to the roll of a die. And that would be a problem
    Only two people get an option of starting next to Mecatol? Then you aren't playing by my rules. Sorry, friend.
    Yes, only 2 people could get next to Mecatol Rex :
    1° player A places first his HS next to MR,
    2° player B places then his HS next to MR just on the other side than player A.
    In that configuration, no other player can place his HS next to MR;
    Do we agree ? I am missing something or couldn't you imagine that configuration ?

    PsiComa wrote:
    Have you really forgotten that you and I have both posted about that question only 5 days ago in this thread ? Fjuri even drew on the wiki part of the galaxy in question for more clarifications.
    Oh yeah, NOW I remember. And I THOROUGHLY explained why that situation worked out as it did. Have you really forgotten that?
    All I was saying is that, if you place your HS early, other players have the possibility to create an imbalanced galaxy.
    Do you agree with my bold sentence ?

    PsiComa wrote:Sorry, I'm not going into philosophy and politics with this.
    Clever way to avoid the discussion but yes, you are right : that would really broaden the debate and it could become too personal.

    PsiComa wrote:
    I have seen many times that Sardakk N'orr can't develop well when they don't have enough resources next to their HS.
    If anything, Sardakk Norr has an ADVANTAGE in a game like this. They can use their Deep Space Cannons to push away opponents earlier, and protect the PDS with Generals. Again, if you have seen Norr lose as a subject to closer starting position, you have seen a (may I?) green player play.
    Was that a misunderstanding ? I said that Sardakk N'orr is better with Star by Star than without.
    Indeed, I wrote :
    I have found that that option avoids that a player gets screwed because it only had bad tiles in his hand. That is especially true when playing Sardakk N'orr.
    PsiComa wrote:Besides, Star by Star is a Shattered Ascension game option, which means that it is balanced as SA. If it works just as good with normal rules I have no idea (we're trying in Deep Space PBeM and so far everyone's having a good time).
    I didn't know that Star by Star was a Shattered Ascension game option. I play SE TI3 with some houserules. I wanted to include Star by Star in those houserules, at least as an option.

    PsiComa wrote:But to be honest I think you are the one coming with a tone and an attitude here.
    Emphasis is mine.

    REALLY ? I DON'T THINK SO. I said I'm sad I don't like that option because of reason A, B, C, etc.
    I even said I usually appreciate your opinion.
    Indeed in the beginning of my first post of today I wrote :
    This conclusion makes me a little sad because I found, at first sight, that the concept of free Home System location was great.
    And at the end of my first post of today I wrote :
    @PsiComa : I am sorry that I do not like your idea. Especially because usually I appreciate very much your work and opinions about the game.

    I would be very pleased to read a constructive comment of some players who don't share my opinion about "Star by Star" because I wouldn't want to simply abandon that option forever.
    Don't you find those comment absolutely respectful
    Come on, PsiComa. Be honest on that one.

    PsiComa

    I'm sorry about the misunderstanding about the Norr. But I thought we were talking about possible disadvantages with SbS, not advantages.


    if you place your HS early, other players have the possibility to create an imbalanced galaxy
    Not really. Say you Have Mecatol and Vega system adjacent, and then you plunge your HS right in there. Already you got a good position with secured resoruces. I can't imagine why ALL other players should start hammering you down, but okay.For example you can deal with another player to give you a tile if he get a better one in return later *shrugs*. But the best advice would be; if you feel you'd do better placing your HS late, then place your HS late! If everyone wanted to go pro-Mecatol neighborhood it has been silly too.

    es, only 2 people could get next to Mecatol Rex :
    1° player A places first his HS next to MR,
    2° player B places then his HS next to MR just on the other side than player A.
    In that configuration, no other player can place his HS next to MR;
    Do we agree ? I am missing something or couldn't you imagine that configuration ?
    Ah, you are talking about 5 player games where 3 tiles are placed next to Mecatol? Nah, as you don't have to complete rings, there are a chance that you can get your spot anyway. It's ideally neigh good with 3 hexes adjacent though. I have a fix fort 5-player games too, but didn't bother to write it.



    About the respect and tone etc..:
    Yes your quotations is completely respectful. The "trouble" was that, as you said, we both thought the other had hard feelings for something, when you misinterpreted the intention of my first reply. You were surprised by that post cause you thought I taken offense. In the light of that, your reply was in the tone of "can't I have my own opinion" etc. And even though we managed to clarify that, I still had to reply to a post written when on defensive mode (because you thought I felt attacked). And replying to stuff (written in defensive mode) kept me the harsh tone. Get it?

    But yet again, what you said was completely respectful.

    Mike_Evans

    Yeah, there is no guarantee that a game variant will even necessarily BE more balanced or more enjoyable than the game without. Take Distant Suns, for example.... I freakin' hate that broken, luck-driven pile of crap, and yet some people love 'em.

    I have only played one "Star by Star" game so far. I liked it very much, so did one other player. One player didn't care either way, and one didn't like it at all. Shows ta go ya...

    Retillion

    @Mike_Evans :
    Mike_Evans wrote:Retillion, did you miss my post talking about neighbors, or did you just ignore it?
    Before answering you I first wanted to "solve the misunderstanding" with PsiComa. So, yes, I have ignored your comment, but it was only temporary. I'm sorry about that.

    Mike_Evans wrote:But Retillion's issue of "whose turn is when," I would say that players should simply determine roughly what order they should sit in. If two hexes are in the same row, roll a die to see who sits to the left and who sits on the right. Then secondaries simply go in order around the table. The "Player to my left and right" Objectives, for example, are based on that.
    So far I had played the way Psicoma had adviced me :

    PsiComa wrote:
    Retillion wrote:5° What if I place my HS on the other side of the table ? I suppose I should stay seated where I am (that is important for SC picking order) but isn't it uncomfortable ?
    On a PBeM it has nothing to say, but yes, in f2f games youll have to be exercising a bit. Or use a stick, or have someone on the opposite side move your pieces as you command.
    In my first Star by Star game, we ended up (but it was just a coincidence) seated in original game order. So everything was fine. In the next 2 games, we changed seats after the creation of the galaxy but we kept the original game order. It was a real mess : we had to always remember "whose turn is when".
    Then I guess I just couldn't change my frame of mind and couldn't imagine another way to determine game order.

    After that small experience and after reading your suggestion, I come now to the conclusion that your solution seems to be the best in practice.

    PsiComa

    If you really have to be changing seats you you must either define the new positions as the seating order (maybe that's actually a good way to do it), or you will have to do what we do in PBeM's: writing up a list.

    http://www.ti3wiki.o...e=Redshift_PBeM

    Moving around and trying to remember "how you sat" I can imagine gets VERY messy.

    Stefan

    Just hopping in.

    Of course the galaxy can get imbalanced when one player places his HS early. But as PsiComa put it: it comes down to the choices that players make. If you want to be near MR, then you have to calculate that other players will perhaps screw you up a littlebit to even chances. Same goes the other way round: the one who places himself out of the immediate action will have a more calm and ressource-heavy edge of the galaxy, but problems reaching the hotspots. And as MOther can tell you, even then somebody can screw up your setting entirely by placing a wormhole. I would agree with PsiComa here that it requires more skill.
    I don't really adore the Star-by-Star-option, though. We like to play with a totally random galaxy, which requires other skills and gives a different feeling, too. But - it's all a matter of choice. Play the variant you like best.

    magicoctopus

    We played a 7-player game with Star-by-Star today, and I'd like to share some thoughts.

    To put everything in context:
    -We played with SA dreads
    -We used SA race modifications and public objectives
    -Races: N'orr, Hacan, L1z1x, Xxcha, Muaat, Jol-Nar and Letnev
    -2 newbie players
    -We used Mike Evans's modified Warfare II and Secret Objectives (no Threatening)
    -We had a variant Assembly with open agendas
    -4 rings, galaxy creation with original back and forth tile placement (not circular, around the table), and you didn't have to finish a ring to start another
    -Bereg/Lirta IV and Abyz/Fria were removed before the game (in a 7-player game 2 tiles are left out, and we tried to restrict resources)
    -1 player got to put 2 extra wormholes in play. He was the player who was 4th in system placing order. We did this because we wanted more wormholes in that large galaxy, and we felt that the middle place in placing tiles is the worst, so we gave him a boost.
    -The game lasted 10 hours (we're slow, I know), and ended in a Xxcha victory in round 5.

    Ok, my thoughts:

  • Hacan was right next to Mecatol, and that position works beautifully for them. I played them (my first time with Hacan), and it was great fun. I had dealings going on with everyone else apart form Muaat, who, as we all know, are from a distant rim system.

  • Politics started at the setup, and with persuasion and threats some players managed to get better tiles for themselves than what they had in their hand. I felt this worked perfectly. In a normal setup your game can be decided by the tiles you get, and diplomacy is often little help.

  • 4-ring galaxy with 7 players is just a little too many resources, unless you have extra empty tiles. In the end we still had 3 neutral planets (round 5).

  • Some parts of the galaxy can get isolated, but those extra wormholes really helped, along with the Nexus. In a normal setup the extremes of the galaxy usually are too distant to influence each other, and here we had a couple of long range conflicts.

  • This time the newbies benefited from abundant resources, so they weren't totally screwed in setup. Might be different with a smaller galaxy.

  • I agree with Psicoma that this option is difficult and one needs practice with it. Often people place their HS too early and the see it be surrounded with reds and empties.

  • This was our 4th game with Star by Star. After the first game we thought that we won't go back to normal placement, but now many of us think that this is a nice game OPTION. Next game we'll probably try something else (maybe a preset). Star by Star makes the game DIFFERENT, and sometimes this is good, sometimes not. We'll probably play with it again, but not always.


  • As a side note, I'd really like to raise my hat in gratitude to all you "old-timers" and veterans and fellow fanatics, who invent and play-test all these different variants and house rules. Me and my friends only get a larger FTF game every once in a while, and can't play-test any really wild ideas. It's great that we can benefit from the work of others who have more opportunities to play. My favourite house rules so far: SA dreads, Mike's Warfare II and Xenomath's political system.

    This sure is the longest post I've ever written in any forum. Hopefully someone finds this interesting/useful...



    Retillion

    @Psicoma :
    When I asked you about Star by Star rules, I understood that a player can, during the galaxy creation, place a tile anywhere next to an already placed one.
    Should I add the words "that is not Mecatol Rex" at the end of the sentence ?

    To make sure you understand my question : on this map, ti3wiki.org/index.php?title=Deep_Space_PBeM, if player A had placed his first tile where "Rocky Field" is, could player B have placed his first tile where "Buzzy Buzz Zap Don't Touch it" is ?

    Is that nuance important ?

    PsiComa

    Ah, no. It can be placed next to Mecatol whenever you wish.

    Retillion

    Thank you for your answer, PsiComa. That's what I thought.

    Incidentally, that's why I said earlier that possibly only 2 players could place their HS next to Mecatol Rex. But that's fine for me.

    I'll play another Star by Star FTF game this weekend.

    PsiComa

    I don't get this. Any player, no matter who starts placing, may end up with their HS beside Mecatol. But of course maximum 3, since yellow tiles cannot be placed adjacent.

    For example, tiles could initially be placed as a straight arm reaching from Mecatol. After these 3-4 tiles, there are 5 more spaces around Mecatol to fill out.

    Are we talking past each other, or what's going on?


    I'll play another Star by Star FTF game this weekend.
    Yeah, as long as I don't "waste your time". Play it if you really feel like it, but it's your own group's responsibility to have a good game in the end. This works perfectly for us, and I can't guarantee it'll work as good in every group.



    Fjuri

    Question regarding the "choice" of neighbors.

    Does the least amount of tiles, or the shortest path (possibly because of wormholes) count?

    Sorry if this has been answered before.

    PsiComa

    You don't choose your neighbors anymore in the latest version. After ruling that Merciless can be done against ANY player on the map, all other cards specifies that it's about "the player on your immediate right or left". That, the players sitting beside you around the table.

    So Neighbor is no longer a technical term,

    Retillion

    Psicoma wrote:Are we talking past each other, or what's going on?
    All I was saying when I wrote :
    possibly only 2 players could place their HS next to Mecatol Rex.
    is that the first 2 players who get to place a tile could prevent all the other players from placing their HS next to Mecatol Rex.
    But it is of course possible too that 3 (or 1 or 0) players have their HS next to Mecatol Rex.
    It could even be technically possible, although highly improbable, that as much as 6 players have their HS next to Mecatol Rex

    So my point is :
    Wouldn't it be a good strategic choice for the first 2 players to "blocade" that way Mecatol Rex. I mean, those first 2 players could place themselves next to Mecatol Rex (on opposite sides) and then place their best tile some place next to their HS, assuring them good resources as well. Of course, that wouldn't be very diplomatic but could be extremely powerful if, for example, those first 2 players play a strong starting race such as L1Z1X and Letnev, for example, and decide to be allies.

    Psicoma wrote:Play it if you really feel like it, but it's your own group's responsibility to have a good game in the end. This works perfectly for us, and I can't guarantee it'll work as good in every group.
    Of course ! I'm the only one responsible of my own decisions.
    I just wanted to tell you that I like so much your Star by Star concept that I want to try it again

    Danger Man

    Retillion wrote:Wouldn't it be a good strategic choice for the first 2 players to "blocade" that way Mecatol Rex. I mean, those first 2 players could place themselves next to Mecatol Rex (on opposite sides) and then place their best tile some place next to their HS, assuring them good resources as well. Of course, that wouldn't be very diplomatic but could be extremely powerful if, for example, those first 2 players play a strong starting race such as L1Z1X and Letnev, for example, and decide to be allies.

    One of them would get Mecatol, yes. What else would make this so powerful?

    magicoctopus

    Retillion[u wrote:So my point is :[/u]
    Wouldn't it be a good strategic choice for the first 2 players to "blocade" that way Mecatol Rex. I mean, those first 2 players could place themselves next to Mecatol Rex (on opposite sides) and then place their best tile some place next to their HS, assuring them good resources as well. Of course, that wouldn't be very diplomatic but could be extremely powerful if, for example, those first 2 players play a strong starting race such as L1Z1X and Letnev, for example, and decide to be allies.

    If you place your HS next to Mecatol the other players have plenty of time to screw you with their tile placements. I played Hacan in our last game, and put my HS in the middle. When it was my next turn to place a tile my HS was surrounded with an Asteroid Field, 2 empties and a Supernova. My hand was full of nice planet tiles, but I could only place one of them next to my HS.

    When the galaxy was done, I was 1 space away from the Letnev, 2 spaces away from the L1z1x1 and space away from the N'orr . Then it was time for politics!

    I bought off the N'orr with a trade contract. Then I managed to convince everyone that the L1z1x were a threat to our peaceful galaxy (they got Trade Embargoed), and since the N'orr were their neighbours, suddenly the L1z1x were feeling isolated. They failed to ally with the Letnev (Letnev traded with the N'orr) and had to watch their back in case the N'orr got some ideas, and so Letnev was the only real worry I had the whole game. We had an uneasy relationship, to say the least.

    What my point here is, that if you are in the middle, you might not get great planets and you run the risk of others thinking that you are in the way. If they want Mecatol they have to get through you. If you don't have the planets you might look weak, and unless you have close allies.... For a while, my game there was really hanging by a thread.

    Hacan worked, maybe other races might have it more difficult.


    Retillion

    magicoctopus wrote:If you place your HS next to Mecatol the other players have plenty of time to screw you with their tile placements.

    [...]

    What my point here is, that if you are in the middle, you might not get great planets and you run the risk of others thinking that you are in the way. If they want Mecatol they have to get through you. If you don't have the planets you might look weak, and unless you have close allies....
    I fully agree with you, magicoctopus.

    I just wonder if that strategy could work if 2 allied players use it together.

    PsiComa

    Retillion; Finally I understand what you're saying. Yes, the two first players placing tiles COULD block off further adjacent placement to Mecatol. But keep in mind some things;

    *You said yourself that placing your HS that early could screw you off badly. When those two players place their HS's, other players would be welcome to bomb them with useless tiles.

    *Only one of these races would get Mecatol. Why would the other player want to be a puppet for shielding Mecatol from others?

    *In my experience, a Mecatol adjacent race don't always get the planet, at least not for very long. There always a High Alert fleet somewhere far ahead that will bust in and say "screw you". Or they will work together with another race for "clearing you out".

    To be frank I don't see why 2 races going opposite Mecatol would be better than one player attempting that. But yes, going inner ring is always a daring tactic that might pay off (if you can handle the pressure), but sometimes it's your own nail in the coffin.

    Check out the current situation in Redshift for a good example. Neither Xxcha nor Lizix are the king because they live where they do. http://www.ti3wiki.o...e=Redshift_PBeM

    Why don't you and another try that this weekend?

    PsiComa

    Good point Magic Octopus, both previous posts

    PsiComa

    Retillion; I re-he-he-heally recommend that you'll try out the Dimension Rifts game option together with Star by Star. This is actually super cool, and it's much less likely that the galaxies will have secluded sectors, as you pointed out as a problem.

    Also, let Artifacts be able to be placed in space as well


    #2 Psyco

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 01:35 AM

    My group (which consists of about 12 guys who rotate in and out) played this for the first time a couple days ago.  We play almost entirely vanilla rules and on the whole the group liked Star-by-Star.  They liked the extra negotiations that started at galaxy setup.  And it was just nice to do something different.  On the flip side, we had some close quarters systems (3 different HS that had only 1 space between it and another HS) and thought that that would encourage turtling, especially from those slow (N'orr) or weak starting units races (Winnu), because venturing out would leave their HS weak.  And although this created more negotiations, I could see someone like the Muaat or L1Z1X taking advantage of a weaker starting group and go after them right away on turn 2.  Even not being able to activate a HS with turn 1 would still encourage much less agressive play, which my group is fond of.  We noticed that there was much less point scoring early on because of the alliances made.  But it was only 1 experience.  We plan to try again, and when we do I will report our 2nd time impressions.



    #3 johnnylump

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 02:57 AM

    My group at long last finished our first Star-by-Star game referenced above, and I imagine every future game will use these rules.

    Final score was Saar 14, Norr 12, Letnev 9, Mentak 9, Jol Nar 6. Saar won it by taking the artifact at the wormhole nexus from the Norr.

    Came down to the absolute wire. In the previous round, Saar had gotten ahead and was targeted by everyone in range: Letnev knocked out a fleet at the Nexus (only to lose it to the Norr), and Mentak knocked out the other Saar fleet at Starpoint. A desperate Saar attempt to take the Norr artifact at Rarron failed. Saar ended with one advanced fighter guarding all three Space Docks, and two damaged Dreads at Lodor.

    Next round: Saar 13, Norr 13. Norr sends three Type IV, Hylar V cruisers to take the out three Space Docks. First combat round: three cruiser misses, one fighter hit. Second round: 1 cruiser hit, 1 cruiser miss; 1 fighter miss. Saar plays "Courageous to the End" and rolls two fighter shots. Two hits! Everyone is dead; the docks survive, and that heroic fighter pilot gets a planet named after him.

    Mentak misses a chance to send a lone Type IV cruiser after the now-unguarded Space Docks, believing Saar doesn't have the mustard to build a fleet to beat the Norr and take an artifact this turn: He's worried now about the Norr. Instead, Saar plays production, builds a massive fleet, and defeats the significant Nexus fleet and ground garrison the following turn, taking the artifact.

    Mentak had a big empire like Saar and Norr, but never managed to translate that into quick Victory Points. Letnev started by pasting Jol-Nar (the new player), and kept him around to milk him for VPs from time to time. It cost him: At the end, Jol-Nar got his revenge by grabbing several Letnev planets and preventing him from scoring the 3 VP, 11-planet objective.

    Endgame MAP: http://home.comcast....Turn 11 map.JPG

    Endgame SCOREBOARD: http://home.comcast....Turn 11 obj.JPG



    #4 robbbbbb

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 07:33 AM

    From the post, it's difficult to tell what the placement rules for using Star-by-Star are.  Would someone please post a reply with a concise set of rules for playing Star-by-Star?

    Thanks much.



    #5 bnorton916

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 07:53 AM

    You might want to check out PsiComa's rules set. You can find it on the old forums.

    Bill



    #6 magicoctopus

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 08:39 AM

    Rules for Star-by-Star

     

    Game option: Star by Star
    Using this game option, the galaxy is built with Home Systems free at the hand instead of fixed starting locations.
    • Yellow-bordered systems follow the same rules as red-bordered systems for adjacent placement.
    • Players placing two systems in a row may not place such two systems adjacent.
    • It is no longer required to complete a ring before placing a tile in the adjacent ring, but a tile must always be placed next to another existing tile.
    • Also, it’s no longer required to place a planet after placing a blank tile.
    • Muaat may only be placed in the rim (outermost ring). 
    • In a game with Star by Star, no Home System may be activated by an enemy during the first round.
    • The Mecatol Custodians must be in play.

     

    Star by star is part of Shattered Ascencion by PsiComa.

    PsiComa's ruleset (Shattered Ascension)

    SA graphics



    #7 robbbbbb

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 08:49 AM

    Thanks, magicoctopus, for the excellent and concise reply.



    #8 johnnylump

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 04:46 PM

    We used a couple of different rules: Instead of placing tiles in a snake order, we just went 'round the circle repeatedly. The last two players to place tiles also got to place one C wormhole each after the map was finished, on any accessible spot on the board except a Home System or Mecatol Rex.



    #9 magicoctopus

    magicoctopus

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    Posted 02 December 2008 - 11:22 PM

    robbbbbb said:

    Thanks, magicoctopus, for the excellent and concise reply.

    No probs, glad to be of help!

    There's also another fun rule that you can use:

    • Asteroid fields may be placed next to other Asteroid Fields.

    I'm not sure if there's any justification for this balance-wise, but it's thematic.



    #10 bnorton916

    bnorton916

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    Posted 07 December 2008 - 12:45 AM

    Bump over the spam.

    Bill






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