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An Unbiased Ruling and Justification for Trench Run

4 posts in this topic

I say this is unbiased, because I don't care either way what the official ruling will be. We get the rules and we make our decks to work within them. So given that and knowing that an eventual official ruling might change how I play, I still figure we need to be as objective as possible in figuring out the rules.

The logic:

Card Text: "Enhance the Death Star dial. This enhancement cannot be targeted. You may engage the Death Star dial as though it were a dark side objective (it is not an objective). If the dial has 10 or more damage, the light side wins the game."

Trench Run specifically tells us that the Death Star dial meets the requirements to engage it as though it were an objective.

An "Objective" is a card type, NOT a trait.
An "Engaged Objective" is not refering to a card and is also NOT a trait. It's referring to anything that has met the requirements to be engaged as an objective and is being attacked. This is given by the attacking player and it lasts until the end of that engagement.

In Conclusion:
If a card says "Objective" alone it's referring to an objective card.
If a card says "Engaged Objective" it's referring to the target of the current engagement.


Wookie Navigator Ruling

The card reads: "After this unit survives an engagement as an attacker, you may engage this same (engaged) objective an additional time this phase."

The trigger to the effect is the word "After", so the moment Wookie Navigator is considered to have "Survived", the over-ruling effect is now in play before the engagement where the Death Star dial is still considered the "Engaged Objective" is over.

In the second part of the card the word "same" implies the redundant word "(engaged)" as only the objective that was currenly engaged would be considered the "same". The word "objective" on this card is not referring to a card and its card type.

In Conclusion:
You may use Wookie Navigator to attack the Death Star dial twice.

The balance of Trench Run is in the fact that a person using it either has to focus all of their attacks on one place to be effective… ether separate attacks on original objectives or all on the Death Star Dial. Either the DS defends like normal or they defend with all of their people in one place. The LS picking away at the Death Star dial with secondary attacks can be seen just as if they were doing the same to a 2nd and 3rd regular objective.

If the DS can't shut down one card by prioritizing their attacks on the Wookie Navigator or event/fate cards, then they wouldn't be able to take out the other units doing damage in the first place let alone their "clones" in the second attack.

I used to feel like I lost even when I won with the LS simply because it would get close to 12 on the dial. Now I realize that it's as valid a win as the DS using effects to turn the dial up or doing direct objective damage like with the game ending Superlaser Blast on a third/fourth objective. The dial is a timer for the DS winning, and each damage needed to win is the timer counting down till the LS wins. If the DS can't control the game enough to defend a single objective from a 10 damage timer of 1-3 damage, then hopefully they can earn their 1-3 damage first by destroying LS objectives.

The game comes down to seeing who can manipulate their unique "Win Timer" the best.

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I would say three things obviously affect the DS dial. Blast icons from resolving strikes, fate cards such as Target of Opportunity (which deal damage to the engaged objective -- the same thing that blast icons do) and unopposed bonus damage (same concept -- all three of these things are framework events or substeps thereof that deal damage to the engaged objective. If one doesn't work, none work. If one works, all work.

Those three should be without controversy.

Hit and Run seems that it should work on the DS dial as well since it has essentially the same text, "deal 1 damage to the engaged objective." However, I think one could make an argument though that it's not an inherent component of the engagement, so it could be excluded from the sources that may deal damage to the DS dial (enhanced by Trench Run).

Wookiee Navigator falls in line with Hit and Run, I think, for the reasons you explained. But how goes the fate of Hit and Run, so goes the fate of Wookiee Navigator, for the reasons I explained. FAQ will clarify which effects work though, but for now, it's just not clear.

Whatever the case, I just hope that the FAQ clarifies what sources of damage work against the TR enhanced DS dial via clarification or modification of game phase structure rather than simply by edict. If they just go and make some arbitrary ruling like blast icons and unopposed bonus work against the DS dial but Target of Opportunity doesn't, I would be highly disappointed.

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Any fate card is inherent of an engagement as it is it's own step within an engagement per the official rules.

Here is my response to someone else on boardgamegeek that I just left.
My logic saying that an engagement makes the target an "engaged objective" and the card saying it's not an objective is there for things that TARGET an objective. Wookie Navigator doesn't target anything as it simply designates that you can engage the same place you just did. When writing the cards, they didn't take the other into consideration given whichever came first.

To say that "same objective" isn't the same as "currently engaged target" is saying that they should have worded Wookie Navigator as "same (engaged) target" and if they didn't write it that way you're trying to imply it was simply not supposed to work on Trench Run.

That then would imply that any card that said "engaged target" would work on the DS dial. Not a single card in the game has this wording. That doesn't mean Wookie Navigator (or other cards) wasn't meant to work.

I explained how Trench Run was balanced… and that balance extends to the use of Wookie Navigator.

They call the target of the engagement "engaged objective" on every single card. This means "engaged/same objective" could be synonymous with "this engagement's target regardless of whether it is an objective alone or not". A playtester for the game even said that Wookie Navigator, target of opportunity, and unopposed damage worked. If the card says you can engage it as though it were an objective and the official rules call the engaged objective the "engaged objective" or just "objective" in every reference to the target that's engaged… it's safe to say that engaging the target labels the target as "engaged objective" regardless… otherwise every ruling in the official rules regarding engagements that says "(engaged) objective" would be just as invalid as you're saying Wookie Navigator is when attacking the dial.

"Declare Objective:
The active player declares which one his enemy's current objective cards he will engage.

This allows the attacker to consider the dial as "one of his enemy's current objective cards".

"Resolving Combat Icons by Type:
Blast Damage: If the striking player is attacking he deals an amount of damage to the ENGAGED enemy OBJECTIVE equal to the * strength of the striking unit.

Using your logic… no damage would go through from Unit Blast Damage.

"Reward Unopposed:
If at least one attacking unit has survived, and there are no surviving defenders, this is an unopposed engagement and the attacking player deals one bonus damage to the ENGAGED OBJECTIVE card."

Using your logic… the "Reward Unopposed" step would be completely ignored as bonus damage would be impossible… making attacking with a Unit with no Blast Damage icons completely pointless if all defending units were focused let alone unit's with blast damage icons doing no damage either way.

The problem here is that "Engaged Objective" is what overall needs an official definition. That alone would clear up this and future issues for people that don't understand this logic when it's explained.

Either way… my logic stands more soundly… as yours would break the game completely.


Either Wookie Navigator and the like work… or the game breaks. Your choice ;P

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I think logical deduction and RAW support what you're saying right now.  If I were running a tournament today, I would let everyone know the ruling before we started, and it would essentially be consistent with what you're saying.


However, I expect the FAQ to make a distinction on what types of effects affect the DS dial in a way that further defines or clarifies the engagement phase and limits the types of cards that can damage or affect the DS dial to effects that are inherent components of said phase.


I would also offer this warning:  Don't be surprised if the ruling on what can damage the DS dial is a seemingly arbitrary edict; that is, a ruling that could not possibly be gleaned from RAW alone.


If you care to read further EXHAUSTIVE, regurgitated and highly contentious discussion related to the same issue, check out this thread:

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