Abandoning Sectors

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Pydro
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Abandoning Sectors

I want to give a few strategies about the advantages of abandoning Sectors.Often times it will be incredibly difficult to control all three Sectors at once. Usually, you want to control one or two, so you don’t spread out your ships too much, then take over the third. The question though, is when should you, and what are the advantages.

 

Before we go into the advantages, we should probably discuss the disadvatages. The biggest disadvantage of abandoning a Sector is that you lose all form of Station card manipulation, and you are left up to the mercy of the game. How bad of an issue this is, I will discuss later. The second major issue is that if you leave a Sector alone too long, it can be much more difficult to clean it up later in the game. How long you let it go will depend on the specifics of the game.

 

I also wanted to point out that most of the comments in here are assuming you are not that familiar with the backs of the Station cards. If you are, your strategies change drastically, because you know what will happen each time. These strategies are based on generalities and probabilities.

 

Abandoning a Sector can limit the number of Station cards being flipped.

 

One way to limit the Opps attacks on you is to limit how many Station cards are being flipped. While it may seem that the number of Station cards being flipped is equal to (Opp Ships) - (SF ships), this isn’t always true because of the hard limit that only three Station cards, at most, can flip in a particular Sector. Usually, one ship can prevent one card from flipping. however, if there are 4 or more Opp ships in a Sector, you will need more SF ships to prevent the flip. For example, if a Sector ahs 4 Opp ships, you will need 2 SF ships to prevent 1 flip.By abandoning certain Sector, you can limit how many Station cards are being flipped.

 

Side note: 1 Sf ship can/should prevent a card flip. By becoming a Secondary Engager, you will be allowing a card to flip, so be careful when using this ability.

 

Let’s go through some examples:

 

Sector A has 4 Opp ships,

Sector B has 1 Opp ship.

Sector C has 1 Opp ship.

 

While there are 6 Opps in play, only 5 Station cards will flip, since only 3 cards will flip in Sector A.

 

Let’s look at where all the SF ships should be based on the number of SF ships:

 

1 SF ship:

NOTE: With only 1 SF ship, you have to abandon two Sectors.

 

Put in Sector A

Card flips: 3 (Sector A) + 1 (B) + 1 (C) = 5 cards.

 

There is no net gain here, because you are still flipping 3 cards in Sector A.

 

Put in Sector B or C

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 1 (C) = 4 cards.

OR

Card flips: 3 (A) + 1 (B) + 0 (C) = 4 cards.

 

Both of these are better options, since you are flipping less cards.

 

2 SF ships

NOTE: With only 2 SF ships, you have to abandon at least one Sector.

 

Both in A

Card flips: 2 (A) + 1 (B) + 1 (C) = 4 cards.

 

While we do lower the number, it is not that efficient since you need 2 SF ships to prevent 1 card flip in Sector A. In this case, it is not advantageous to abandon the additional Sector.

 

Both in B or C

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 1 (C) = 4 cards.

OR

Card flips: 3 (A) + 1 (B) + 0 (C) = 4 cards.

 

In this situation, since there is only 1 Opp ship in those Sector, one SF ships isn’t preventing a flip. In this case, it is not advantageous to abandon the additional Sector.

 

One ship in B and one in C

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 3 cards.

 

This is your best setup. It allows a one-to-one SF ship-prevent flip ratio. So abandoning A has several advantages.

 

3 SF ships

 

All in A

Card flips: 1 (A) + 1 (B) + 1 (C) = 3 cards.

 

You are limiting cards, but not in the most efficient way. Don’t abandon B and C

 

All in B or C

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 1 (C) = 4 cards.

OR

Card flips: 3 (A) + 1 (B) + 0 (C) = 4 cards.

 

Both of this situations are worse than “All in A” because each SF ship is not limiting card flips.

 

One in each Sector

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 3 cards.

 

This allows two of your ships to prevent flips, but the one in A won’t.

 

0 in A, 2 in B, 1 in C OR reversing B and C

Card flips: 3 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 3 cards.

 

This situation and the last one will get you to the lowest number of card flip. The difference is where your last ships is. If you are an expert in manipulation, you can put it in A and limit those card flips, but you can be hit by the flips. If you put it in B or C you can be a Secondary Engager if you want, and help clear the Sector out.

 

4, 5, or 6 ships

In Each of these situations, the best setup is for one ships in both B and C, and the rest in A. This will give us the following flips:

 

4 ships: 2 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 2 cards.

5 ships: 1 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 1 cards.

6 ships: 0 (A) + 0 (B) + 0 (C) = 0 cards.

 

Summary: Abandoning a Sector with at least 4 cards in in it and be advantageous, but don’t abandon two Sectors if you can prevent flips. Your main goal is to have each SF ship prevent one flip. Once all the 1-1 ratios are gone, should you move to something worse.

 

Abandoning a Sector can limit the effectiveness of Station flips.

 

NOTE: Everything here uses the core game only.

There are 9 Station cards that have an Opp ship, and 21 that have Boosts. Of those 21, 7 are completely useless if there are no SF ships in that Sector. By abandoning a Sector, you instantly make 23% of the cards pointless. This is perhaps one of the most important reasons for abandoning a Sector. However, when to abandon a Sector is a little more complicated. So let’s run down the number and effects of the Station Opp cards.

 

Opp ships: 9, however 3 of them can move away from the Sector they were played in.

 

Opp Boosts: 4 of them play ships, but one of them won’t if there are no SF ships there.

 

4 of them upgrade Opp ships, which will always take effect, but one won’t if there are no SF ships there.

 

8 of them can affect other Sectors, and, therefore, will always be a threat.

 

Note that Materialization plays an Opp ships and hit an SF ship. Therefore, to completely block it needs some specific situation.

 

Before we go into why all of this matters, let’s see all of the different situations a Sector can be in regarding the effectiveness of additional ships.

 

1 or 2 ships: If a Sector has only 1 or two ships, an additional ship will flip another card. This is the worst situation for more ships. However, less than 3 cards are flipping, limiting the overall damage.

 

3 ships to (Fleet Limit - 1 ships): In this situation, additional ships won’t add more cards, but will make it harder to take over the Sector later. In addition, if a ship that can move can be played there, it can affect other Sectors.

 

Fleet Limit or more ships: In this situation, additional ships can’t enter the Sector, and it completely nullifies the card (unless an Opp ability does something with it).

 

As mentioned before, if you abandon a Sector, 7 of the cards become useless, so let’s see how many cards are still at their full potential in an abandoned Sector with the various situations:

 

1 or 2 ships: Each of the other 23 cards can have their full effect. However, the three cards that upgrade Opp ships won’t be that effective since there aren’t that many Opp ships in the Sector.

 

3 ships to (Fleet Limit - 1 ships): In this situation, all of the 23 cards will have some effect,  additional ships won’t cause more cards to flip, thereby limiting the threat. Therefore, 14 cards will have their full effect (the non-ship cards plus the ships that will move), while the other 9 cards will have a smaller effect on the game.

 

Fleet Limit or more ships: In this situation, all cards that put ships into play will be nullified. Therefore, only 11 (37%) of the cards will have any effect.

 

Of course, if you have an SF ship in that Sector, it raises the card count by 7 (8 for Fleet Limit because of Materialization).

 

Also, keep in mind that the numbers are overall for the Station cards as a whole. However, you will know whether it is a ship or a Boost, which can change the numbers for you. For example, if a Sector is at its Fleet Limit, a card with a ship will have no effect, while one with a Boost will have a 52% to be effective.

 

As you can clearly see, abandoning a Sector has clear advantages. You might be leaving the card flips up to chance, but by abandoning at the right time, you can minimize the damage.

 

Taking both strategies into account, we can come up with a viable overall strategy. The more Opp ships in a Sector, the greater reason to abandoned. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each situation depending on the number of Opp ships in a Sector:

 

1 Opp ship in a Sector

Should you go in? Unless you are needed elsewhere, why not. You have a 1:1 SF ship to flip prevention, and no cards will flip here.

 

Should you abandon? Maybe, a flipped card will have the greatest effect, but only 1 card is flipping. If that card is a ship, it will have the full effect. If it is a Boost, there is a 33% chance it will have no effect, but there are Boosts that can be really bad.

 

2 Opp ships in a Sector

Should you go in? Depends. If you go in with two ships, you will have a 1:1 ratio, and prevent cards from flipping. Just make sure you aren’t needed elsewhere. If you move one ship in, you still have a 1:1 ratio, but the flipped card has a 100% chance of having a full effect.

 

Should you abandon? If you abandon here, you are essentially abandoning the Sector for a long time. If the two cards that flip are ships, you will now have 4 ships in the Sector. If they are Boosts, each ship still has a 66% of full effectiveness.

 

3 Opp ships in a Sector

Should you go in? Even though you have a 1:1 ratio, be careful here. If you are going in with one SF ship, you will be hit by the full effect of both cards. If you are going in with two ships, you are slightly better off, but there might be better Sectors. If you are playing with a lot of players, and you can go in with 3 SF ships, great.

 

Should you abandon? This is a better place to abandon than 2 ships, since more ships won’t flip more cards. Your Sector will grow, but the effectiveness of additional ships will lessen.

 

4 Opp ships in a Sector (up until the Fleet Limit - 1)

Should you go in? With 1 SF ship, never (unless you are REALLY good at manipulation). 2 or more SF ships? Only if you have used up all of the other 1:1 ration situations.

 

Should you abandon? Absolutely. The less players in a game, the easier the decisions, since you will hit the Fleet Limit Faster.

 

Fleet Limit in the Sector

Should you go in? No. Save this Sector until the other ones are dealt with.

 

Should you abandon? Absolutely.

 

Obviously, there are other variables that can drastically affect your decisions, but I wanted to put some basic thoughts down.

 

Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing.
-Robert E. Howard, "The Tower of the Elephant"

Spiff
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Man, that is one long post.


Spiff's SotM site: www.spiffworld.com/sotm
Spiff's Tactics site: www.spiffworld.com/tactics

Pydro
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Here's a shorter version:

Tip #1

When choosing which Sector to engage a ship in, make sure you are flipping 1 less card during the Aftermath.

Tip #2

The more ships in a Sector, the less effective flipped Station cards will be. 


Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing.
-Robert E. Howard, "The Tower of the Elephant"