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(8B2A) Starting Values

 
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JimDauphinais
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Joined: 22 Nov 2009
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Location: Chesterfield, MO

PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:00 am    Post subject: (8B2A) Starting Values Reply with quote

Should the VP adjustment for starting value differences be applied when bases are involved?

In particular, I am concerned this could be an issue where a base is not the objective of an attack and is very unlikely to be destroyed. For example, see Scenario (8CM13) Asteroid Operations, which appeared in Communique #22.

My concern centers on the fact that a base cannot move to press an attack on the enemy.

Also, has the starting value adjustment always been in the FC rules or is that something that was introduced in the 4th or 5th edition of the rules?
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hadn't thought about the base question, and I don't have an answer for it.

Regarding the point difference adjustment, yes, it has always been there. The big change to the (8B2) rules in one of the updates was adjusting the points associated with victory levels in (8B2c). The percentages were adjusted way down, as there was mathematically no way to even theoretically score the higher victory levels. They are now at least possible.
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Mike
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 8:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's an interesting question.

I am right now working on a scenario (or series of them) that begins with a ship escaping from a planet with 5 DefSats. Since the ship will be 3 or 4 hexes farther away at the end of Impulse #1 of Turn #1 when the DefSats can fire at it and then be totally out of range by Turn #2, I'm wondering how fair it is to count the 100 points of DefSat value into the point-based victory system. I sort of have a workaround going, but this question about the planet and the DefSats not being the object of attack is a good one.
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storeylf
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Joined: 24 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For a scenario with those sort of victory condition isn't victory just based on did you achieve your objective, and not what the damage difference is? I'm not sure I understand the focus on 'standard' victory conditions for 'non standard' scenarios.

In other words I'd expect the scenario writer to come up with the appropriate victory conditions.
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JimDauphinais
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understand the expectation, but that is not what has been happening in the scenarios to date. More often than not, there is a retreat to 8B2 in the victory conditions when the objective is not met (which is often very difficult to achieve). Also, the scenario I mentioned does not contain such an objective.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2014 11:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rather than trying to make general rules about special cases like that, the best bet is still to just handle it with scenario rules. In the case of the DefSats, just have a rule saying that they have some level of reduced value in the points determination. Scenarios have increased point values for important items all the time. There is no reason to not also have reduced point values when needed.
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JimDauphinais
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2014 3:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It turns out the scenario I was worried about (8CM13) is fine with respect to this issue.

In Scenario (8CM13) Asteroid Operations, the Klingon's are attacking with a D6 and 2 x F5 (294 points) versus Tholians with a Base Station, a DD and 2 x PC (336 points). The map is a 35 hex location map centered on the Base Station. There are three asteroids drifting toward the Base Station roughly from the opposite direction from which the Klingon's are attacking. Each is destroyed once it receives 100 points of damage. Each destroyed asteroid is worth 25 points to the Klingons while each surviving one is worth 25 points to the Tholians. Victory is solely determined via (8B2) with the exception of the asteroid modification.

This situation awards the Klingons 42 victory points for the ship/base point difference. This would normally allow the Klingons to score a Draw (14.3% = 42/294) to a Tholian Failure (0% = 0/294) under (8B2c) by doing nothing but staying within 35 hexes of the Tholian Base Station even though the Klingons are supposed to be attacking. However, because of the special asteroids feature of this scenario, the Tholians will gain 75 victory points from the asteroids if the Klingons do nothing, which will allow the Tholians to score a Marginal victory (25.5% = 75/294) versus the Klingon Draw (14.3% = 42/294). This ensures the Klingons have the burden of attack as the Klingons lose if they do nothing.

I think the bottom line is that scenario designers need to be cautious when using the 8B2 victory point system to ensure it doesn't create a situation where an attacker can win by doing nothing.* As Mike West indicated, it is likely best addressed by a special rule or feature in the scenario. By the same token, I think it is important for ADB to be careful when reviewing scenario submissions to ensure it is not being too hasty in trimming out special rules or features as the reason they may be present is to address this issue or some other play balance issue.

* In a broader sense, it is critical that scenario designers ensure that their scenarios neither: (i) allow the attacker to win by doing nothing or (ii) allow the defender to win regardless of what the attacker does. Even a "no win" situation should be winnable by either side in at least some moral sense.
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