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LegendaryLass

Leaving Behind TIEs/Ground Forces in a Retreat

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Hi

 

I'm a little confused by what may potentially be an oversight/omission in the Rules Reference.  Under retreating, it lists (emphasis is the rulebook's):

When a player retreats, he must move all of his ships out of the system

That line is then immediately contradicted (seemingly) by the line after saying they can choose to leave TIEs and ground forces behind.

 

What concerns me is how emphatically it says "all ships."  Given that and the fact that the 2 units mentioned require carrying capacity to move, it seems possible it's meant to actually say you can choose which TIEs and Ground Forces to leave behind "...if you don't have enough carrying capacity to move them."

It may very well be the intent is that one can partially retreat by choice, but it just doesn't seem to jibe with the mechanical notion of retreating.  Can anyone at FFG clarify this?

Edited by LegendaryLass

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TIE Fighters are ships.

 

From the rules:

"All units that have blue resource icons are ships." (that includes TIE fighters)

"A ship that has a red health value is a capital ship; a ship that has a black health value is a fighter."

(eg it goes Units --> Ships --> Fighters --> TIE Fighters, all nested in each other)

 

The way I read it is that you have to retreat all ships but don't have to retreat TIE Fighters or Ground Units.  Its a specific rule over-riding (may retreat TFs) a more general rule (must retreat all ships) .   Unless they FAQ it, which FFG has been known to do.  I get the argument that it is an odd rule and all, but the way things are written, its impossible to determine the authors intent besides what is actually written since everything else is so tight.

 

I do have to say retreat rules are some of the most complex rule sets in the game, as far as you can do x, but need to do with y except not to a or b and oh if c=d+s, you can't do it at all.

 

I have seen more complex rule sets, but I think its going to be one of the hardest parts of the game to explain well, especially since you will not engage the retreat rules as often as other most other rulesets (only a subset of combats will use them).

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This is an extreme non issue.  I have played two games, and it is obvious that you cant take TIE fighters with you unless you have the capacity to carry them. Its the only reason the rule is there about leaving TIE's. 

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Marshal8 and Rowdy, I think you are missing the concern.

 

The rules for retreating say: "When a player retreats, he must move all of his ships out of the system."

So you must move all of your ships (including fighters) out when you retreat.

 

Then the next line says:

"The player can choose to leave ground units and TIE Fighters behind in the system."

 

No one is concerned about carrying capacity, its clear that you need enough carrying capacity to take TIEs and ground units out as per this rule, "Then he takes his units from that system and moves them to that leader’s system following normal movement and transport rules."

 

The "issue" is, the way the rules are worded (using the word "choose"), even if you have the carrying capacity, you can opt to leave TIEs behind when the rest of your ships pull away.  This is different than  Xs and Ys which have to retreat normally with he rest of your ships, which creates concerns in peoples mind since its an odd and arbitrary difference.  It also gives the Imperials a small advantage.  They could have worded this rule differently, like, if you have insufficient carrying capacity for your TIEs, they must be left behind, but they chose to use the word choose.

 

I expect it to be FAQed pretty quick.

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Seems clear you retreat all your ships except TIE fighters. Ground units and Tie fighters can keep fighting.  I dont know why you would leave TIE fighters if you retreat unless you have too. So its no issue to me. 

 

There are a few scenarios.  If you get into a situation where you have TIE Fighters, and a couple of very damaged capital ships and the enemy just has a bunch of Y-Wings left, it might be worthwhile to pull back your star destroyers and let your TIEs cut the Ys down.

 

I also suppose, if you have a fair amount of TIE Fighters, a damaged capital ship and your opponent just has a very damaged capital ship left, you could remove your cappies from risk and swing for the fences that one of the TIEs could finish the enemy capital ship.  The way the game is set up, the Imperials will have numerical superiority so they can afford to take more loses than the rebels.

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I think I've proven my main point here, which is that it's confusing and counter-intuitive.  I agree that, as it's written, you can choose to leave TIEs behind regardless of carrying capacity, I just think FFG needs to clarify that is their intention if so.

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IMHO, there are two ways to look at this.  First, they use the word CHOOSE to mean that you can leave behind your ties so that you can fit in some other stuff, pricier stuff, (ie AT-ATs), BUT the expectation is that you are using all your carry capacity or B) they meant it to be thematic in that TIEs are extremely expendable, therefore it makes sense that if the Imps pull an advance to the rear, they have the option to leave the TIEs behind as a screen to "cover the withdrawal"

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I think that it's a valid interpretation to choose to leave TIEs behind even when not forced to. I think the tactical advantage of doing so will be few and far between. Usually it just means your fighters are now cut off, unable to evacuate and easy targets for the force you're retreating from. If you can win with just the fighters, you can win without retreating.

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I think that it's a valid interpretation to choose to leave TIEs behind even when not forced to. I think the tactical advantage of doing so will be few and far between. Usually it just means your fighters are now cut off, unable to evacuate and easy targets for the force you're retreating from. If you can win with just the fighters, you can win without retreating.

 

Yes, if you can win with fighters, you can win without retreating.

But that's not the issue at hand.

 

If the rebels may push and attack planet A, which you really need to retain control of, but you also want to hit a small rebel base at planet B.  You could move to B, attack space and ground, then retreat to planet A (leaving behind ground and TIE units to mop up).  You've now secured A and are still protecting B.

If you won without retreating, your forces are now locked in at planet B, and A is exposed.

 

Another thing this allows is the planet hop.  A - B - C - D.  A/C is neutral.  B/D is Rebel controlled.  Imp fleet at A, Rebel forces at B/D.  You could move the Imp fleet from A to B, start combat, retreat from B to C leaving behind TIEs and ground units allowing you to mop up in B.  Next turn you can move to D.

If you won without retreating, you have to spend a turn moving to C, and a turn moving to D.  This would give the rebels more time to move or deploy defenses to D.

 

In these scenarios, not being able to leave TIEs behind on a retreat would mean that you may secure the ground, but wouldn't secure the space area of that sector.  You have the planet subjugated, but you can't build there due to being blockaded.

 

Also, in either of these scenarios, even if you lose the ground combat, you've effectively blockaded the planet with your TIEs that were left behind (assuming they win).

 

With all that said though, I think it will still be a rare situation.  The defense force needs to be small enough that a couple TIEs left behind can still win, but big enough that your entire fleet doesn't crush them in 1 round of combat.  You'd also need a scenario where you'd want to pull these maneuvers off, and in the second one, the planet hop would depend on a number of other issues also.

 

It's one of those really rules lawyery situations.  If we assume that it would be rare to voluntarily leave TIEs behind during a retreat.  Then an Imp player doing either of the above scenarios would be extremely rare, and when it happens, the Rebel player would likely call fowl (he can't do the same and the rules say retreat with all ships), then the Imp player points out the optional TIE abandonment clause and the fighting commences.

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I think that it's a valid interpretation to choose to leave TIEs behind even when not forced to. I think the tactical advantage of doing so will be few and far between. Usually it just means your fighters are now cut off, unable to evacuate and easy targets for the force you're retreating from. If you can win with just the fighters, you can win without retreating.

 

Yes, if you can win with fighters, you can win without retreating.

But that's not the issue at hand.

 

If the rebels may push and attack planet A, which you really need to retain control of, but you also want to hit a small rebel base at planet B.  You could move to B, attack space and ground, then retreat to planet A (leaving behind ground and TIE units to mop up).  You've now secured A and are still protecting B.

If you won without retreating, your forces are now locked in at planet B, and A is exposed.

 

Another thing this allows is the planet hop.  A - B - C - D.  A/C is neutral.  B/D is Rebel controlled.  Imp fleet at A, Rebel forces at B/D.  You could move the Imp fleet from A to B, start combat, retreat from B to C leaving behind TIEs and ground units allowing you to mop up in B.  Next turn you can move to D.

If you won without retreating, you have to spend a turn moving to C, and a turn moving to D.  This would give the rebels more time to move or deploy defenses to D.

 

In these scenarios, not being able to leave TIEs behind on a retreat would mean that you may secure the ground, but wouldn't secure the space area of that sector.  You have the planet subjugated, but you can't build there due to being blockaded.

 

Also, in either of these scenarios, even if you lose the ground combat, you've effectively blockaded the planet with your TIEs that were left behind (assuming they win).

 

With all that said though, I think it will still be a rare situation.  The defense force needs to be small enough that a couple TIEs left behind can still win, but big enough that your entire fleet doesn't crush them in 1 round of combat.  You'd also need a scenario where you'd want to pull these maneuvers off, and in the second one, the planet hop would depend on a number of other issues also.

 

It's one of those really rules lawyery situations.  If we assume that it would be rare to voluntarily leave TIEs behind during a retreat.  Then an Imp player doing either of the above scenarios would be extremely rare, and when it happens, the Rebel player would likely call fowl (he can't do the same and the rules say retreat with all ships), then the Imp player points out the optional TIE abandonment clause and the fighting commences.

Sure, but two things to keep in mind.

1) The rebels can do the same with ground units. Fly in, drop off an assault force, take their lumps in space, and flee. The TIEs are the only units that have a unique advantage in this, but my feeling is that there aren't really any rebel ship units you'd want to leave your unsupported TIEs with. Unless you overwhelm them numerically.

2) If one is available, the retreating player has to retreat to a system with friendly units or loyalty (and the Imperials can't even do this with a death star present), so that could hamper free movement opportunities. If it's really a concern however, it would be a simple and balanced houserule to say that the attacker (the one who moved units in) can only evacuate to the system they moved from to start the combat, while the defender observes the rules as printed.

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Yes. It's contradictory because it is a rules exception. Rules exceptions always contradict other rules. But specific rules are always considered to take precedent over general rules.

There is no reason for confusion here. "The player can choose to leave ground units and TIE fighters behind in the system." That's the answer. It's the specific exception to the general rule preceding it. If they didn't intend for you to be able to voluntarily leave behind TIEs and/or ground units, this sentence would not be there. The general rule would be the answer. But because this line is present...it is correct. The previous line is also correct when not overruled by the next sentence."

It's like seeing a sign which reads "No dogs allowed. Service animals are allowed to accompany people requiring special assistance." While the lines are contradictory (and granted, not worded in the best possible way), the rational person should not be confused as to whether or not a blind person can bring in their seeing-eye dog.

The answer is clearly stated.

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Yes. It's contradictory because it is a rules exception. Rules exceptions always contradict other rules. But specific rules are always considered to take precedent over general rules.

There is no reason for confusion here. "The player can choose to leave ground units and TIE fighters behind in the system." That's the answer. It's the specific exception to the general rule preceding it. If they didn't intend for you to be able to voluntarily leave behind TIEs and/or ground units, this sentence would not be there. The general rule would be the answer. But because this line is present...it is correct. The previous line is also correct when not overruled by the next sentence."

It's like seeing a sign which reads "No dogs allowed. Service animals are allowed to accompany people requiring special assistance." While the lines are contradictory (and granted, not worded in the best possible way), the rational person should not be confused as to whether or not a blind person can bring in their seeing-eye dog.

The answer is clearly stated.

The answer is clearly stated.  The rules are the rules, and should be played as such (unless you want to house rule it, that as always is your call).

But you have to admit the rule is nonsensical.  Why can the Imperials leave behind units like this, but the Rebels can't?  There seems to be no justification for it, nor is it all that thematic.  It's just an odd rule, therefor it stands out as such.

 

On top of that, there are logical explanations to how such a mistake with the rules could have been made.

 

Not sure if you've ever noticed or not, but FFG is not infallible. They have messed up many rules over the years.  They have released lots of ambiguous rules over the years.  They have issued many corrections, FAQs, and clarifications to their rules over the years.  In many of those instances, the rules as written were just incorrect, or being interpreted incorrectly by the majority of players.  Asking for clarification of a rule seems like a completely legit thing to do.

 

I plan to play by the rules as written, but I do hope someone can coax a clarification out of FFG on the subject.

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The two sentences are contradictory.  An official clarification is necessary.

 

No more contradictory than (verbatim quote from rulebook):

 

A ship that has a black health value is a fighter. 

** The Death Star Under Construction is not a fighter; it is a
space station.

 

I do agree that confirmation would be nice, if only to put an end to the discussion.

 

 

 

 

But you have to admit the rule is nonsensical.  Why can the Imperials leave behind units like this, but the Rebels can't?  There seems to be no justification for it, nor is it all that thematic.  It's just an odd rule, therefor it stands out as such.

 

Without it, i.e. if Rebels could leave their fighters behind as well, they would gain additional movement possibilities. You retreat your leader and (assuming it was your only leader in the system) after the combat is resolved, the rest of your fighters is free to move once again.

 

Thematically, I don't see any other way around "TIE fighters doesn't have hyperdrive" thing without skewing the balance.

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I see it like this. The Empire is callous. If they're taking a beating, they may choose to leave TIEs stranded. Recalling them takes time. They're expendable. Leave them behind and save yourself.

The Rebellion is the opposite. They're stretched for resources and are loath to leave personnel or equipment behind to be destroyed. With their hypersppace-capable craft, when a full retreat is called for, everyone leaves.

So just ask yourself, is the empire waiting to recall their TIEs before withdrawing? sometimes yes. Sometimes no. Sure the narrative delay doesn't translate to a mechanical delay in the scope of this game, but it can add to the evolving narrative and can be completely rationalized.

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The rule is not specific to the Empire. It is specific to units that require a ship to transport them.  "Ground units and TIE Fighters" are units that require a ship to transport them. Both factions have ground units and the rule would apply to both factions when considering if you wish to leave ground units behind. When you consider it, the rule would only apply to the defender since the attacker would have to have full carrying capacity for all units brought into an attack. 

 

I think the clarification on "all ships" is; units that can be moved from sector to sector without the requirement to be transported.  X wings and Y wing do not require transports (thematically they have hyper drives), so they meet the requirement for "all ships".  TIE Fighters do require transport so they do not.

Edited by daddyguy99

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Yes. It's contradictory because it is a rules exception. Rules exceptions always contradict other rules. But specific rules are always considered to take precedent over general rules.

There is no reason for confusion here. "The player can choose to leave ground units and TIE fighters behind in the system." That's the answer. It's the specific exception to the general rule preceding it. If they didn't intend for you to be able to voluntarily leave behind TIEs and/or ground units, this sentence would not be there. The general rule would be the answer. But because this line is present...it is correct. The previous line is also correct when not overruled by the next sentence."

It's like seeing a sign which reads "No dogs allowed. Service animals are allowed to accompany people requiring special assistance." While the lines are contradictory (and granted, not worded in the best possible way), the rational person should not be confused as to whether or not a blind person can bring in their seeing-eye dog.

The answer is clearly stated.

The answer is clearly stated.  The rules are the rules, and should be played as such (unless you want to house rule it, that as always is your call).

But you have to admit the rule is nonsensical.  Why can the Imperials leave behind units like this, but the Rebels can't?  There seems to be no justification for it, nor is it all that thematic.  It's just an odd rule, therefor it stands out as such.

 

On top of that, there are logical explanations to how such a mistake with the rules could have been made.

 

Not sure if you've ever noticed or not, but FFG is not infallible. They have messed up many rules over the years.  They have released lots of ambiguous rules over the years.  They have issued many corrections, FAQs, and clarifications to their rules over the years.  In many of those instances, the rules as written were just incorrect, or being interpreted incorrectly by the majority of players.  Asking for clarification of a rule seems like a completely legit thing to do.

 

I plan to play by the rules as written, but I do hope someone can coax a clarification out of FFG on the subject.

 

I believe it's to prevent multiple moves.  TIEs and ground forces can be left behind because they need transports to move.  So that prohibits you from moving into the system, retreating with a couple ships just to get your leader out of there, then using a different leader to move the remaining ships again.

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Yes. It's contradictory because it is a rules exception. Rules exceptions always contradict other rules. But specific rules are always considered to take precedent over general rules.

There is no reason for confusion here. "The player can choose to leave ground units and TIE fighters behind in the system." That's the answer. It's the specific exception to the general rule preceding it. If they didn't intend for you to be able to voluntarily leave behind TIEs and/or ground units, this sentence would not be there. The general rule would be the answer. But because this line is present...it is correct. The previous line is also correct when not overruled by the next sentence."

It's like seeing a sign which reads "No dogs allowed. Service animals are allowed to accompany people requiring special assistance." While the lines are contradictory (and granted, not worded in the best possible way), the rational person should not be confused as to whether or not a blind person can bring in their seeing-eye dog.

The answer is clearly stated.

The answer is clearly stated.  The rules are the rules, and should be played as such (unless you want to house rule it, that as always is your call).

But you have to admit the rule is nonsensical.  Why can the Imperials leave behind units like this, but the Rebels can't?  There seems to be no justification for it, nor is it all that thematic.  It's just an odd rule, therefor it stands out as such.

 

On top of that, there are logical explanations to how such a mistake with the rules could have been made.

 

Not sure if you've ever noticed or not, but FFG is not infallible. They have messed up many rules over the years.  They have released lots of ambiguous rules over the years.  They have issued many corrections, FAQs, and clarifications to their rules over the years.  In many of those instances, the rules as written were just incorrect, or being interpreted incorrectly by the majority of players.  Asking for clarification of a rule seems like a completely legit thing to do.

 

I plan to play by the rules as written, but I do hope someone can coax a clarification out of FFG on the subject.

I believe it's to prevent multiple moves.  TIEs and ground forces can be left behind because they need transports to move.  So that prohibits you from moving into the system, retreating with a couple ships just to get your leader out of there, then using a different leader to move the remaining ships again.

Pretty much this, from what I can tell.

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