Player fighting more than one batter per Campaign Turn?

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Greg Smith
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Postby Greg Smith » Tue Oct 16, 2007 8:15 pm

Sulfurdown wrote:So you have your initiative order - when a player figures out what they are doing (attacking a target or trying to 'intercept' an attack) he/she is pulled from the initative order and moved to the next phase. Initiative then falls to the person at the top of the list. That means that you can only choose to "intercept" one player per turn (or less if you are first) as you'll get pulled from the initiative list once you are committed to the 'attack' - and must do it before it passes to the next person in the initiative list or you've lost your chance.

Once everybody is moved to the next phase you determine who is fighting whom (attacks, intercepts, defense) and with what conditions - then start fighting it out.
Yes that is pretty much it.

In a 4 player campaign:

Player 1 selects a target
If it is unoccupied:
Player 2 may intercept, if not
Player 3 may intercept, if not
Player 4 may intercept.

Player 2 selects a target (unless he intercepted)
If it is unoccupied:
Player 3 may intercept (unless he intercepted player 1), if not
Player 4 may intercept (unless he intercepted player 1).

And so on.

Interception only usually happens in the first few turns, except for the trade route.
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nekomata fuyu
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Postby nekomata fuyu » Tue Oct 16, 2007 8:25 pm

I think needing a rules rewrite is something that everyone could agree on at least, even if we were to start disagreeing on what to rewrite it to.

On the whole, I think that this would be the best way to write what I believe is intended by the current rules:
In order of initiative, each player may choose a strategic location to attack, with the following limitations:
a) If the location is unowned at the beginning of the campaign turn, a maximum of two players may choose to attack it. If any further players wish to attack the location, they'll have to wait and do so on another campaign turn.
b) If the location is already under the control of a player at the beginning of the campaign turn, only one other player may attack it. Again, if any further players wish to attack the location, they'll have to wait and do so on another campaign turn.



Of course, if you're in a group that's happy with multiplayer battles, you could choose to lift these restrictions altogether. As far as I'm aware, they're only there to make sure that you only get 1vs1 battles.
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Postby zulu01 » Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:45 pm

Allowing the next players in initiative order to "intercept" the higher initiative player and still get their turn to choose an action has lots of benefits. It increases the strategic risks of splitting your fleet between too many attacks; it also generates more battles per campaign turn.

My experience with campaigns in the past is that people get all excited in the beginning, but as it drags on lose interest and fade away. Allowing a player to intercept and still keep their own action will radically speed up campaign play.
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Postby Keith » Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:47 pm

Just as an additional complication as a house rule we allowed the player winning initiative to pass when it became their turn to declare an attack giving them the option to see what the other players were doing if they wished. This gives rise to a more complex sequence but also gives the winner of the initiative a greater advantage.

Th pros and cons of selecting targets can only really be appreciated by playing in a multiplayer campaign. Surfice it to say that knowing how many battles each player is fighting, particularly how many defense you need to mount can prove invaluable when shoosing your target (in a four player game you can end up fighting 5 battles in a turn).

This worked in the following way
Only One player may attack an occupied world. Amaximum of 2 plyers may attack an unoccupied world.
Position x in the initative can choose to attack before any player lower in the order or to pass. If position x passes they are again offerd the option to attack or pass immediately after another player makes an attack/pass decision. Position x in the initiative must declare an attack once all the players lower in the order have declared an attack.
the second placed initiative can choose to act first or immediately after any other player.

I know this sounds extremely complcated but it does work. It means the initative winner can choose to see how all, some or none of the other players act before deciding youself. If no-one wants to act first the looser of the initative is forcesd to do so.
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Postby jwoodjoe » Wed Oct 17, 2007 12:36 am

Interesting discussion. The campaign rules for this game are much better than other constructs our game group has played. The Strategic Target system allows freedom of movement unlimited by map-based systems, so you are not forced to fight the same neighbor over and ovber again. There are always fights every turn. The liklihood of no battles is very small.

In this case, we are going to continue with our interpretation of the rule. To Zulu's point, there is no explicit rule as written to prohibit initiating an attack in your initiative phase and intercepting another player's action later or intercepting a player with higher initiative and subsequently initiating another action in your own initiative phase and we will not assume such a limitaiton is implied.

"Once it has been decided what the player who won the initiative is doing, the next player in initiative order chooses a Strategic Target and follows the same process. He may not choose a Strategic Target that has already been nominated by previous player in this turn."

It does not say: "the next player in initiative order unless he chose to intercept...."

Nor does it say: A player may only attack or intercept one S.T. per turn.

So, our gaming group will continue to play a complete cycle of target nomination and interception for each player in the initiative order.

Determining what is implied or the "intent" is a matter of opinion and not relevant. Even if the writer of the rules indicated that this limitation was his/her intent, I do not believe we would proceed with that limitation and here is why:

a) We love to fight battles. The campaign is great because it enables us to play battles in the strategic context of a campaign and with a backdrop for a back story. Inevitably, we are playing the campaign to fight battles, not to color in boxes on a S.T. map. Playing the rule as written results in more engagements per turn, which we value.
b) The possibility of more battles per turn increases the importance of decisions regarding what ships to allocate to each fight. It increases the possibility that you, as an admiral, will be resource limited and will have to make difficult choices. It makes you think ahaed even more and consider if you can afford to intercept if you may also be attacked later in the sequence. This makes the process even more interesting.

In short, we fully understand and respect your opinions about limited players to one action (either an initial attack or an interception) but will choose to interpret the rule as noted above because, in our opinion, it makes the campaign even more fun. And that, after all, is the true intent.

Have fun out there.
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Postby Sulfurdown » Wed Oct 17, 2007 1:25 am

jwoodjoe wrote:It does not say: "the next player in initiative order unless he chose to intercept...."

Nor does it say: A player may only attack or intercept one S.T. per turn.
It does say that "If this target belongs to another player, he will move to the next phase, fighting a battle with that player’s fleet." and "If it is currently unoccupied, the next player in the initiative order may decide to also occupy it, in which case, they both move to the next phase in order to fight a battle." I made the assumption and later confirmed it with Matt that this doesn't mean that the battles are decided prior to the next player's Initiative Phase.
It does mean that they are no longer in the initiative phase and able to continue making attacks or intercepting attacks. The players have moved to the Scenario Generation and are now rolling up (or otherwise deciding) their engagement scenarios.
As I read the rules - it does say that you may only make one attack/intercept per campaign turn.
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Postby Locutus9956 » Wed Oct 17, 2007 8:08 am

Basically it doesnt use the exact phrase 'may intercept' but its pretty clear! You attack one target per turn only. Intercepting is basically just attacking the same unocupied target as another player.

You will still very often end up fighting lots of battles per turn especially in a larger game.

And 'we love to fight battles' is all well and good but the thing you seem to be missing is that you end up fighting just as many battles with one attack action each you just dont end up with campaign turns taking several weeks! In fact it tends to result in building up bigger fleets and fighting BIGGER battles whereas fighting lots of seperate ones per turn will leave you with less ships, less RR and of course have to commit less ships to a single battle and will result in smaller games.

I really dont see where all this 'rules as written and rules as intended' stuff is coming from though, I dont have the book to hand at the moment but the last time I read through the campaign rules it seemed pretty clear to me!
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Postby Skipper » Wed Oct 17, 2007 7:09 pm

[quote="Determining what is implied or the "intent" is a matter of opinion and not relevant. Even if the writer of the rules indicated that this limitation was his/her intent, I do not believe we would proceed with that limitation and here is why:

a) We love to fight battles. The campaign is great because it enables us to play battles in the strategic context of a campaign and with a backdrop for a back story. Inevitably, we are playing the campaign to fight battles, not to color in boxes on a S.T. map. Playing the rule as written results in more engagements per turn, which we value.
b) The possibility of more battles per turn increases the importance of decisions regarding what ships to allocate to each fight. It increases the possibility that you, as an admiral, will be resource limited and will have to make difficult choices. It makes you think ahaed even more and consider if you can afford to intercept if you may also be attacked later in the sequence. This makes the process even more interesting.

In short, we fully understand and respect your opinions about limited players to one action (either an initial attack or an interception) but will choose to interpret the rule as noted above because, in our opinion, it makes the campaign even more fun. And that, after all, is the true intent.

Have fun out there.[/quote]

I think you've hit the key element. Fun!!! I like the idea of there being possible multiple intercepting on the first turn. Lets get the battles started right away. I proposed to our group that intercepting another attacker only defends the unocupied target (the interceptor can't take posetion if he wins). Also, we proposed starting at the highest initiative and allowing each one to decide to intercept or not. This means in a four player multiple battle, there could possibly be four battles in turn one with players already making tactical decisions on what part of their fleet to allocate to each battle. This really apeals to me and seems fairly balanced. Besides, it would eliminated the trade route being such a cheesy selection (at least the way its used by many of the players here in our last campaign.).

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