Tuesday, March 4, 2014

An expansion for Exodus - II. Technologies (part 2)

Last week I started presenting the new technologies in the upcoming expansion of Exodus: Proxima Centauri and today I am going to continue to talk about techs in the second article on this topic. 

Technologies in the base game

Space Combat

The Tachyon Scanner is another powerful type of development for space combat. Every player with this technology will be allowed to re-roll his failed combat dice in the first round of a space combat. You may immediately think that if you combine the Tachyon Scanner with the Quantum Scanner you get the most lethal combination in the game. Rest assured that will not happen, the same player will never have access to both technologies. The Tachyon Scanner will be available to a race which is not focused on space combat. But let's not rush into these details just yet.

In the base game of Exodus, the space combat is a pretty straightforward deal. You roll the dice, assign your damage and move to the next round, when you do the same thing all over again. With Basic Tactics the situation changes a bit. A player with this technology knows how to organize his fleet so that his most heavily armored ship takes the beating first. So, before each space combat (not every round of combat), Basic Tactics allows the player to assign one ship to stand in front of the rest of his fleet and take damage until it is destroyed. Only after this one ship is destroyed his opponents are allowed to distribute hits to the rest of the ships. 

In the same repertoire as Basic Tactics we are introducing Advanced Tactics. With this technology, a player is allowed to sacrifice one Dark Raider and deal damage to one enemy ship. The amount of damage is equal to the total strength of that Dark Raider's shields. If this does not look powerful enough, let me disclose one more detail. The player with access to this technology will also have a large fleet of Raiders, coming with the expansion (I won't say right now how many, but I can assure you that there will be enough to make this technology count). Imagine those inexpensive ships scattered all over the map and ready to deal up to three damage to any ship bold enough to attack.

There is, of course, another more advanced technology called Fringe Tactics. This one works in a very simple way. Every round of every space combat, the player who has researched Fringe Tactics will decide how the damage is distributed against his own ships. Overpowered? Maybe, but it will be equally expensive. And only available to one player. 

Centaurian Resistance Card

The last technology I am going to talk about today is Quantum Reflection. This one does not play an active role in space combat, but it brings something extra after winning the fight with a Centaurian Resistance ship. With Quantum Reflection you get the Victory Points depicted on the associated card (the one you get to keep after winning a battle against the Centaurians) and the specific benefit of that card. In short, "the benefit OR the VP" becomes "the benefit AND the VP". Now we are scratching a different part of the tech tree, specifically the technologies that allow players to score Victory Points, directly or indirectly, in ways which were not possible in the base game. I will develop on this topic in my next post.

Before I finish, I just want to say that Exodus has broken into top 1100 on BoardGameGeek! That was only possible with your help and I want to express my thanks for this. With the upcoming expansion, I now dare to hope that Exodus will climb about 300 places higher by next winter.

Exodus: Proxima Centauri in top 1100 on BGG

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  1. This all sounds entirely amazing! I can't wait to get this!

    Quick question -- "The Tachyon Scanner will be available to a race which is not focused on space combat. But let's not rush into these details just yet."

    By "race" -- are you now specifically referring to something alluded to previously, where each player might be a different race with individual player powers (for lack of a better comparison -- like it is in TI3)?

  2. Yes, each player will have his own set of technologies and special abilities. The TI3 comparison is actually flattering. This was the plan with the expansion from the very beginning, asymmetric game play.

  3. Exodus is the only game worthy of the TI3 comparison. Even hard core TI3 fans agree.

    For what it is worth -- Exodus is #2 on my list of games of all time. I will instantly buy anything which expands this fantastic game!

    My only complaint -- I wish there was an easier way of designating ship #1 and #2 than with the cardboard chits.

    That said -- I've ordered flight stands, and I will simply mark the stem to indicate which ship is which.

  4. Thanks for the compliments.
    Regarding the ship markers, I would also like to hear a better idea for separating them. Stands are good, but it's way too expensive to include them in every copy, the retail price would skyrocket and I'm afraid it would push many people away from the game. But we're still looking for brilliant ideas in this direction and any suggestion is always welcome :)