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Admiral Theia

Agressive Rebels

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So, @Mikael Hasselstein and I played a team game with two other friends.  Mikael and I have played each other many times (I think we are up to 16 or so), and the other two players (each of which was teamed up with one of us) had played each other a few times.

I'm fairly aggressive as a Rebel, usually netting all 3 MC-80's by turn 3 and going toe-to-toe with the Imperial war machine.  I was the rebel admiral in this game, and my teammate, as well as the other guy paired up on the imperial side, couldn't get over how aggressive I was and how willing to engage in symmetric warfare I showed myself to be (and the fact that I was winning at it).  When I took out an SSD their disbelief was staggering (Rebels ended up winning the game, never once changing our base location, which was funny since my teammate said he regularly changes it 2-3 times a game, and we just ringed Tatooine (our base) with built up loyal planets with troops on them so they couldn't come in without fighting a battle or two first).

I tell all this not to brag (much) but to ask, is my style unusual for Rebels?  Have others found this to work, being aggressive?

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Posted (edited)

I never ever saw a Rebel player having 3 MC80 by turn 3, the Imperial player won't let it happen, if I as an imperial player see the rebels with loyalty on one of the planets that have the MC80 icon, I rush to subjugate it at least. If you were able to do that as a rebel player could be that the imperials haven't played well, or you did a really fantastic strategy to make that happen (I can't think how you can prevent the empire for subjugating those in the early turns with the great difference in resources in the firts turns, in my games is really hard for the rebels to be able to have 2 of those planets at the same time)

Edited by Lemmiwinks86

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I've played some aggressive games as the rebels. In my experience, there are 2 things that need to come together to make this happen:
1) Luck. In starting systems and cards that are drawn.
2) Having an imperial player that is not aggressive.

If the rebels can start out with Mon Calamari, and the empire doesn't get Salucami, there's 2 Mon Cal Cruisers at the end of turn 1 (assuming that the rebels make Utapau loyal). Throw in "Temporary Alliance", and there's 3 MCC's.
Conversely, start the rebels on any planets that aren't Mon Calamari, give the empire "Trade Negotiations" and there's a good chance the rebels only have Ryloth at the end of the first round with very little unit production at all.
Usually we'll end up somewhere in the middle of that... but the empire should always have the upper hand when it comes to unit production.

If the imperial player isn't quashing the rebellion every time it shows up on the board, then they're doing it wrong. As the empire, you can't be worried about losing a few ships. Between the ease of subjugating planets and the project deck, there's should be plenty of grey plastic pieces on the board. Of course there are ways for the rebels to mitigate this, "Demolition", "Hit and Run" and the like. But I don't think it's enough to give the rebellion the upper hand. Maybe if they can draw those cards early and the empire gets a bad draw.

TLDR: There is a strategy for the rebels to be aggressive and on the offensive, but it really depends on a weak imperial player and some good draws by the rebels. Otherwise the rebels will be playing the hiding game, the distraction game and the misdirection game.

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1 hour ago, Lemmiwinks86 said:

I never ever saw a Rebel player having 3 MC80 by turn 3, the Imperial player won't let it happen, 

It's happened each of my last four games.  I usually lose most or all of them (and end up building another one or two), but until I started going this way to blunt the edge of the Imperial war machine early in the game (thus delaying how many systems they can subjugate, thus meaning they don't gather as much info on the location of the base nor develop ) I lost every game.  If the Empire gets to run around as it wishes it can pretty much fill the galaxy before too long.

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Indeed, I have been bearing the brunt of this Rebel aggression. I failed to adjust from the previous strategy of not allowing myself to be distracted militarily as I use intel to find out where the Rebel base is. It's proven to be a mistake, given @Admiral Theia's recent strategy. I certainly planned to change it up this last time, but then I allowed my Imperial partner to be in charge of deployment, while I saw to my duties as a host (providing snacks & drinks). While my partner cognitively knew that Theia would pursue a military strategy, he did not seem to have deployed in order to deal with that effectively.

 

This game is tough to determine a grand strategy for, because it's hard to plan for what sort of resources and mission cards you'll be dealt. Nevertheless, Theia has been pretty consistent in recent games. I also think that the aggressive military style pays off for the Rebels in the Rise of the Empire time, given that the Death Star is still under construction, and can be destroyed through conventional means.

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On 7/26/2018 at 12:16 PM, Mikael Hasselstein said:

Indeed, I have been bearing the brunt of this Rebel aggression. I failed to adjust from the previous strategy of not allowing myself to be distracted militarily as I use intel to find out where the Rebel base is. It's proven to be a mistake, given @Admiral Theia's recent strategy. I certainly planned to change it up this last time, but then I allowed my Imperial partner to be in charge of deployment, while I saw to my duties as a host (providing snacks & drinks). While my partner cognitively knew that Theia would pursue a military strategy, he did not seem to have deployed in order to deal with that effectively.

I think Brian was messed up by the difference in knowing I was going to do that, and knowing I was going to do that.

Your intention to change it up means we need to get in another game soon 🙂

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4 minutes ago, Admiral Theia said:

I think Brian was messed up by the difference in knowing I was going to do that, and knowing I was going to do that.

Sometimes italics make all the difference.

One issue is that he talks a great game - same goes for in Armada - but the talk frequently falls a bit flat when the polyhedrons come out to play. My problem was being too accommodating and thinking that he was agreeing with me. Another issue is that I've not had the occasion to really dissect the way that you've done the Rebel blitzkrieg. I guess the main part is that I just haven't challenged your diplomatic overtures to Utapau/Corellia enough.

The game really does seem to be an interesting balance of who has initiative. Does one seize the initiative by playing one's own game more aggressively than the other is playing their game?

4 minutes ago, Admiral Theia said:

Your intention to change it up means we need to get in another game soon 🙂

Maybe one of these years when I've had more sleep.

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2 minutes ago, Mikael Hasselstein said:

The game really does seem to be an interesting balance of who has initiative. Does one seize the initiative by playing one's own game more aggressively than the other is playing their game?

Isn't that usually the way it goes in warfare?

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I have also successfully won the game with an aggressive strategy before, combined with a fair amount of misdirection. I used my fleets to eliminate smaller Imperial subjugation fleets, initially focusing on the closest Imperial planet to Mon Cal, quickly eliminating it on turn one. I focused most of my forces on the other side of the board from my actual base (Mon Cal, bit of a risk as that was all my eggs in one basket), drawing most of the Imperial player's attention away. I also kept a couple of Leaders in reserve to aggressively oppose Imperial Loyalty actions.  I actually ended up winning while my base was revealed, but my opponent's forces were too far away to get to Mon Cal before time ran out. 

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I guess it depends on what you mean as aggressive. 

 

I usually try to build as big of a fleet as I can.  I don't sit around and wait to die, but instead try to pick away at the weak points of the Imperial fleet to slow them down, retreating once I've done enough damage.

 

It's usually pretty effective- but it's not like I'm aggressively expanding onto the map.

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On 8/6/2018 at 12:57 PM, subtrendy2 said:

I guess it depends on what you mean as aggressive. 

 

I usually try to build as big of a fleet as I can.  I don't sit around and wait to die, but instead try to pick away at the weak points of the Imperial fleet to slow them down, retreating once I've done enough damage.

 

It's usually pretty effective- but it's not like I'm aggressively expanding onto the map.

I try to up-gun my fleet as fast as possible (trade negotiations FTW!) while picking at his star destroyers and sabotaging his build queue.  I've had the Imps down to only one or two ISD's and none on the build queue two build phases in, while I still had 2 MC's and a third on the queue.  Usually when I win the base is already revealed or @Mikael Hasselstein has it narrowed down to two possibilities.  Once he even assaulted it with his Death Star, after trying to secure the plans (which I successfully opposed with a well timed misdirection mission), and Luke used one in a million to knock out the Death Star, swept up his paltry ground forces, played death star plans and won the game.

I really love the variety of ways to approach victory in this game.  Michael beat me through sheer attrition many times, or through capture and control, or through just spreading out via subjugation and loyalty until the galaxy was blanketed in the stench of Imperial Jack-boots.  I want to try a game that really focuses hard on objectives while playing a bit of keep-away, to see how that goes.

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10 hours ago, Admiral Theia said:

I try to up-gun my fleet as fast as possible (trade negotiations FTW!) while picking at his star destroyers and sabotaging his build queue.  I've had the Imps down to only one or two ISD's and none on the build queue two build phases in, while I still had 2 MC's and a third on the queue.  Usually when I win the base is already revealed or @Mikael Hasselstein has it narrowed down to two possibilities.  Once he even assaulted it with his Death Star, after trying to secure the plans (which I successfully opposed with a well timed misdirection mission), and Luke used one in a million to knock out the Death Star, swept up his paltry ground forces, played death star plans and won the game.

I really love the variety of ways to approach victory in this game.  Michael beat me through sheer attrition many times, or through capture and control, or through just spreading out via subjugation and loyalty until the galaxy was blanketed in the stench of Imperial Jack-boots.  I want to try a game that really focuses hard on objectives while playing a bit of keep-away, to see how that goes.

Nice!  Being down to 2 ISDs has to be brutal for the Empire.

 

And totally agreed- I don't think I've ever had two games that I could reasonably say were too similar.

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