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About MikeEvans

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    Bloomington, Indiana USA

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  1. MikeEvans

    Kyle Katarn 2.0

    I think he'd be great with 1 force. It will make him more competitive with Jan and therefore more likely to see play. Allowing him to use his force point to change eyeballs increases the utility of giving away his own focus token. At the very least he won't feel like he absolutely needs to take Recon Specialist (whatever the new one is called, can't remember offhand).
  2. MikeEvans

    Cluster Missiles 2.0

    Won't be too bad of an attack with Fire Control System, esp. on a force user. (Going off memory, the new FCS lets you reroll a die if you have a lock on your target.) Getting a reroll on each attack with the chance to modify with force (or extra focuses from ablities/allies) ain't too bad.
  3. MikeEvans

    Suggestions for my HotAC build?

    Great ideas, thanks! I really like idea of taking a linked battery for the rerolls until I can save up to replace it with a HLC. Stealth Device is also surprisingly tempting considering how hard I would be to hit. My wingman who's moving into a HWK is planning on getting Esege's and Kanan's abilities, with lots and lots of focuses (Moldy Crow title). As long as I stay fairly near him, I should have access to all the focuses I need on offense, and even more tankiness on defense (against ships like Phantoms that can really pump out the dice). I would be more self-sufficient, of course, if I went with the kit that your friend is using, though. I have seen the Jammer/Jan Ors/Keyan B-Wing combo before in 100/6 and it's ridiculously tanky, especially against a limit of 1-2 shots per round. Food for thought. With focuses-on offense taken care of by my wingman, and focuses-on-defense taken care of with Ezra, if I go with my tanky build, I'd basically have an EPT freed up. I'm thinking either Predator, Nera, or maybe even Ibtisam. Since I'm planning to be stressed 24/7, Ibby would grant an extra reroll on offense AND defense against everything. That's a very high likelihood of 2 evades against every single attack (with Norra's ability), not factoring in Sensor Jammer and my buddy's Kanan... Pretty tanky for a B-Wing, and not a slouch in the attack department considering a full load of ordnance, HLC, focuses from my buddy, and rerolls. Cue the guy from Goldeneye saying "Yes! I am inveeencible!!!" Really the only thing I won't be doing much of is repositioning. I can live with that. My buddy flying the A-Wing is going to be poetry in motion with all his maneuver potential, so I'll leave the ballet dancing to him.
  4. MikeEvans

    Suggestions for my HotAC build?

    I'm early on in a 5-player Heroes of the Aturi Cluster campaign and I'm trying to decide how I want to progress through the campaign. We've played the training mission and the minesweeping mission so far. I'm having a blast. I hit PS4 and I've got 9 experience to spend and I'd like to have an idea of what I'm going to do before my game tomorrow. We are allowed to use any of the EPTs out there for Rebels, not just the ones in the HotAC book. We're also pooling experience to help out anyone who wants to fly an A-Wing or support ship. Finally, ARCs can be flown. One build I'm considering is that of a "tank" B-Wing. The EPT's I'd be taking would be Tarn, Ezra, Nora, and then make sure I'm stressed somehow. The idea is that when an enemy ship attacks me, I get a Target Lock on them (Tarn). I can then immediately spend that lock (Norra) to get a free focus result added to whatever I roll with my 1 agility die. As long as I'm stressed, Ezra's ability lets me turn any eyes I got, which is at least 1, into evades. Tack on a Sensor Jammer (esp. if one of my wingmen has Wes Janson's ability) and it will be extremely difficult for enemy ships to put more than a slight dent in me. I could theoretically fly into a swarm of TIE fighters, draw all of their fire from my buddies, and walk away with barely any damage at all. I just need to be sure that I'm stressed when I do that or things could get dicey. Rebel Fenn's ability might be just the thing for that, but it's PS9 so I wouldn't have that until endgame. I'm also not sure what I should take in my crew slot. Hera is tempting so that I can stress myself at the start of the game to activate my combo and then just fly however I want after that, but I can see an argument for other options. The issue with this, of course, is that with all the defensive abilities, my offense will suffer (though Norra's ability can be used offensively). We already have one guy who's committing to an A-Wing and another who will be moving into a HWK. We have a Y-Wing but he's already committed to turrets and bombs... no ordnance. Our fourth player plans on going over to an ARC so he'll pack a decent punch eventually, but I don't know if he's planning on being a heavy hitter. With that in mind, my other thought was to just go for crazy offense. I don't necessarily need to change out to a B-Wing for that. I've seen some builds that use Eaden Vrill and R3-A2 to get an extra die... that looks like fun. I could do an ordnance-heavy B-Wing with Nera's 360º ability and some good offensive EPTs. If anybody has some thoughts on the builds I've listed, or just wants to talk about some fun builds they're flown or seen, I'd appreciate it. Finally, some advice for leveling up... is it best to push Pilot Skill as high as possibly as quickly as possible to unlock EPT slots and abilities, or is it better to get your ship kitted out with stuff first? Without having read the rulebook thoroughly, I think the missions get harder based on average pilot skill, so perhaps it is unwise to pump pilot skill if you're not spending as many points making your ship better.
  5. macraigh, you are correct on all counts as far as I can tell. People who are saying otherwise don't understand the new rules yet, or have misspoken. In TI3, if Leadership/Logistics came up before the Political Agenda, you had to (theoretically) consider whether to spend your influence on CCs, or hold onto the influence so that you could vote instead. In fact, part of the advantage of taking Leadership or Logistics was that you'd get some CC's for free and didn't have to (or in Logistics' case, couldn't) spend influence on CCs, so you'd go into the vote with more influence than your opponents. In practice, though, it was almost always best to just buy as many CCs as were allowed to you. The vote was very often unimportant, and/or CCs were cheaper (with Leadership) so you'd often have some leftover influence available anyway, not to mention a small remaining pool of influence on your high-resource planets that you would never spend on CCs. In TI4, you can spend that influence freely, because you'll get back all of your planets after the Status Phase and be able to spend them again on votes. Even though I usually just spent all influence available on CC's in TI3, it still feels very freeing to be able to go hog wild buying up CCs, knowing you'll get to use those planets to vote with anyway. :) Even if those CCs are more expensive to come by.
  6. MikeEvans

    How do You Play Riders

    Apparently it's a question that has definitely come up more than once, because a guy in my game on Sunday was asking the same thing. He confirmed that he didn't post on FFG's forums about it, so there are at least two people out there who want to be able to do it. However, it's pretty clear, at least to me, that everybody at the table is entitled to know what you are playing and what it does.
  7. MikeEvans

    Arborec Flagship

    I'd go with A
  8. MikeEvans

    Public objectives too easy

    You almost regret, huh? That sounds like an almost apology. And you are correct that that sort of talk is exactly the sort of the thing that convinced me to stop trying. But let me be crystal clear: I don't take negative reviews of my work as a personal attack. In fact, I'd RATHER somebody come in and make a personal attack, because it's more socially acceptable for me to tell them to **** off. But even if I know it's not personal, I can still be annoyed by it. I welcome criticism when it has merit, is carefully considered, and/or comes from people who can actually contribute to the conversation intelligently and with constructive intent. Intent is a big part of that, btw. I love that kind of criticism even if (maybe especially if) it tears my idea apart and forces me to reconsider from the ground up. What aggravates me is somebody who comes and shares an opinion that is incorrect, mistaken, counterproductive, or just rude. It's almost always due to one of the following reasons, in order of frequency: a) They're offended that somebody thinks anything should be house ruled because the game is perfect as-is. This is disturbingly common. b) They missed something critical because they didn't read the entire post. Also alarmingly common. RTFPost, guys, or GTFO! c) They have an opinion that is demonstrably faulty, but stick to it because they think they are experts because they played half a game once. They also usually refuse to actually try the idea because they "know they're right" and don't want to "mess up their next game." d) They're experienced players, but made a snap/premature judgement or don't understand what I'm trying to do. In the rare super-rare case that they DO play the variant, they don't give it enough of a shake to really grok how it works. Or they're mistaking personal taste for quality. I'd put my run-in with you in category D. The rarest category, but it still happened plenty. Guys in the A and B category are easier to deal with. You can just point out they're being rude and tell them to take a hike. It took years for me to learn how to deal with these guys but they still get to me. The real problem is Guys in the C and D categories. They are by far the most time-consuming ones to handle, because they're like a dog with a bone. You get into the "you can't convince anybody of anything on the internet" problem here and the entire thread goes out the window. Then what is the point? I often hear the phrase, "Opinions are like **** holes, everybody's got one." Yes, this is true, but some are crappier than others, and not everybody wants to get close and personal with yours. If somebody is just trying to rain on your parade, they should go away. If I see a variant that I think has no merit or that I have no interest in, I usually don't say a word. I hit the "next thread" button and go along my way. If I'm feeling benevolent and have the time I might try to steer them in a better direction, but I generally try to do that diplomatically. In my younger forum days I didn't always follow that rule, and I regret any time I was guilty of that. Perhaps I used a bad analogy, then. Perhaps I should have likened it to standing on a crowded street corner and trying to share an idea where half the people who can hear you are downright hostile, a quarter are nitwits or too stuck in their ways, and the few people you want to connect with can't hear you over the shouting. Some of my ideas, esp. the half-baked ones, I've actually just thrown at my old TI3Wiki buddies via facebook. I cut out the entire "public" part and just go straight to the folks who I know will give me the feedback I'm looking for. Unfortunately, that's a pretty small number of people. I thought about making my own forum, invite-only, but I know that it would never reach a critical mass. I do appreciate your offer to host a blog for me. I don't know the first thing about how to do any of that, though. I assume there are services that allow one to do that, but I have no idea how much they cost or what they entail. That's my biggest barrier to entry... I am so busy with my business and family that I don't really have time to sit down and learn how to do that stuff.
  9. MikeEvans

    Agenda Phase Tweak?

    Something did occur to me that could be considered a weakness of this variant... with all of the agendas out there, if the Speaker picks something nobody cares about, everybody might save their influence for the second vote. One of the nice things about the sequential draw from the Agenda deck is that only the speaker has any chance of knowing what's coming. That uncertainty makes it a harder decision whether to spend your votes on the first agenda, or save it for the second. A way to work around this is to say that when it comes time to vote, the Speaker can select an agenda from the docket, or they can draw one from the top of the deck. That one on the top of the deck might be a card they know about (if they drew it and put it back), or it might be random. That keeps the element of potential surprise and suspense while still allowing for more strategic political planning. This way the speaker can select and important agenda that makes everybody spend all their votes... and then pull an even MORE important agenda off the top of the deck, where they had placed it, and catch everybody with their pants down.
  10. MikeEvans

    Agenda Phase Tweak?

    I absolutely agree that more teeth for Politics is a good thing. TI4 took things in the right direction to be sure, but but even a little more yet won't hurt at all. Even though I think the agendas are way better now in general, there are still ones that I'd consider duds... mostly the agendas that revolve around electing planets of a certain trait to get small bonuses or penalties. In the docket system, those agendas actually have their place. There might be a super scary docket for you, with only one or two innocuous agendas that won't be a problem. You might take Politics yourself to ensure that the harmless stuff gets voted on, rather than something that ruins your plans like Closing the Wormholes.
  11. MikeEvans

    Thoughts after first 2 games

    That's apparently how it is according to politics. But I'm just messing around anyway!
  12. MikeEvans

    Thoughts after first 2 games

    I've also seen great propaganda describing how Luke was a horrendous mass murderer terrorist who killed over a million people in the blink of an eye.
  13. MikeEvans

    Thoughts after first 2 games

    Yeah, but the Empire was the bad guy. Perhaps that sad Muatt player was trying to liberate the galaxy from the evil Letnev oppressors!
  14. MikeEvans

    How do You Play Riders

    Is that you, Stephen? This exact scenario occurred in our game over the weekend, and as you know, I argued that one must reveal everything about the card they are playing. First, you have to say what card you're playing. Well, I supposed you could say "well the rules state that I only have to read the card's ability text. Doesn't say anything about the title." An argument liked that would seem a bit rules-lawyery. To which I would reply, ability text is everything that the card does. You can't leave out part of the description just because half of the card resolves at one time (during the vote, and you cannot vote) and the rest of the card resolves later (you get a benefit or not based on the results of the vote). Assuming you DO have to say the title of the card you're playing, the rider card titles are not just "Rider. Their titles correspond with whatever Strategy Card they're linked to. ("Leadership Rider, Imperial Rider," etc.) Just by saying what card you are playing, you are revealing what the text does to any player who has played the game before. I'm fairly sure that it is intentional on the part of the authors that playing a rider is open knowledge and meant to heavily influence the vote. ...Especially if the rider is a strong one (Imperial and Politics Riders are a huge deal). I like riders, because they allow creative/skilled play... do you wheel and deal to get the vote to go a certain way without being able to contribute to the vote? Or do you do like the player in our game did and hold one voting outcome hostage with the threat of getting a free victory point? However, I do feel that riders come up a little too often, and I'm not sure about the power disparity between them. I'd be inclined to limit them to 4 cards and make the result that you can select a Strategy Card's primary ability and resolve it if the vote goes the way you predicted. That would make them very strong cards, but more situational for the best cards (only get a vp if you control Mecatol). Regarding the cards as they are, I would be fine with a house-rule that re-words the card in such a way that you don't HAVE to let on what kind of rider you're playing, but that would have to be a house rule. Rules as written, I firmly believe you have to say which rider you're playing, and what it does, in its entirety.
  15. MikeEvans

    Agenda Phase Tweak?

    I don't think they have anything concrete as a suggested variant. They just mentioned that they were expecting that voting would be a bit more like it is in Game of Thrones, where you can inadvertently overspend on votes, or purposefully bluff. You're absolutely right that it would dilute some of the power of the speaker. However, I'd posit that your variant makes Politics (and with it, the Speaker token) more desirable and powerful, esp. if there's an agenda on the docket that you really want to bring into play (or eject before it can screw you). Also, as Speaker you'll have 7 options (the 5 on the docket plus the ones you drew to swap out) to pick from for voting, up from 2. Perhaps that increase in power would help balance things out since you lose the advantage of voting last. I'm intrigued by the SCPT's idea, but if I try it, it won't be for a while. However, I've decided that my next game will absolutely use your variant, unless I end up teaching a bunch of newbies or something. I'll let you know how it goes. Might be a little while, though... Christmas season is murder on weekends (esp. if you're a parent), which is the only time I have to play a game this long anymore.