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A Look At the Homefront IV Missions from the Perspective of the Current Block

by Rossman, Guest Writer

17th October 2013

Clash at Chin'toka

 

With the Release of Homefront IV, a plethora of new missions are around. There have been two general thoughts in the community with respect to them: I can’t wait to put these in my open decks and boy they excite me for the Deep Space Nine Block.

The first official block of the game has been left out in the cold! These missions are legal with that group of cards, yet no one seems to be interested. I’m looking forward to the Deep Space Nine block as much as anyone, but there is some value in looking back at Homefront IV: The Next Generation.

What will we be looking at exactly? Viability of these missions with the TNG block. That means that we’re not exactly interested in the Delta Quadrant. Also, if there’s not a whole lot of skill redundancy, it‘s out. To make things a bit easier, we’ll focus on aligned crews, but feel free to augment them all you like.

What else are we not concerned with? Mission Specialists. Yes, they can boost your score, but that gives them a huge target. You’re probably not going to try a science mission with only one scientist, are you?

For all the lovely Gamma Quadrant Missions, we will presume that the first set Deep Space Nine block, or its supplement, will include some sort of mechanic to get from the Alpha quadrant to the Gamma Quadrant.
Clash at Chintoka: Not only are these skills (and characteristic) in ample supply in all three affiliations; they appear on several personnel you‘ll stock in your deck anyway. At 35 points, it’s not something that can be stolen in the OTF format.

Investigate Maquis
Destroy Iconian Gateway: Even with Dr. Hawking rotating out, this is still a good mission, providing that you can muster up the strength. Additionally, the span is low, for a Gamma Quadrant mission that is.  This might be your sole mission in that neck of the woods, leading to some interesting dilemma seeding choices for your opponent.

 Eliminate Virus: The Federation can solve this quite easily. Note that the points are nullifiable if Harvester Virus makes an appearance in the upcoming block, but the lack of attemptability icons helps protect it from theft in all formats.

Investigate Maquis Activity: A handful of mains that are probably already in your deck can solve this, but the strength issue will rear it’s ugly head again. It's a likely target for your opponent’s Dead End or other nasty dilemmas, so use this without banking on the extra five points.

Navigate Argolis Cluster: The Federation will have problems with the Strength, but if you don’t have Officer, Leadership, Security and the Strength in your Klingon deck, you’re just not trying. 35 points are very neat and well worth your time.

Protect the Escapees: This is what the Federation calls a Walk in the Park. Not the best rewards though, unless Klingons have a habit of popping up in your meta. If you have the skills, it is worthy of inclusion.

Renovate Starbase: Thirty points and an outpost? That’s a pretty good deal for skills that, honestly, are hard to build a deck without. Limited to Klingons, but very viable, even before the Dominion is unleashed to wreck havoc with the facilities you’ve seeded.

SUFfering Resupply Marauder: This first appeared in Engage as a Mission II, so the skills are there. If you want to give up the valuable seed slot provided by a built in Outpost for an extra five points, it’s you call, but the range boost is extremely useful, putting Ferengi ships more on par with the other affiliations.

Search and Rescue: The span is awfully high, but the Federation can do this. Not a bad candidate for cleanup at the end of the game.

Signal for Rescue: The Klingons can just muster the Biology, but the rest shouldn’t be that difficult, especially the Strength. At forty points, it is stealable. Though, the Federation will have difficulty stealing it - at least if they are of the TNG variety.

Study Rare Phenomenon: The Federation has no problem at all with these requirements. The points make it worthwhile enough.

Surgery Under Fire: Surprisingly hard for the Federation, but doable for the Klingons. Medical and Biology are rare, but they appear on solid personnel, making this a good choice for your deck. The skill set is outside the norm enough to add some flavor.

The Siege at AR-588: Yes, the Federation can do this, but the skills are not all that rare in the Ferengi pool. You could probably muster them up, but you might need some extra personnel to do it. Also, you think the Federation have strength issues, you haven’t seen nothing yet. It could be either an alternative mission or a nice juicy dilemma soaker. Note that it is stealable.

Homefront IV may have been built with the upcoming Deep Space Nine block in mind, but it does leave options for your TNG era decks. There are a few more tricks up your sleeve and more options on the table. Shape up the meta by including them in your next Block tournament, even if it’s after the release of the next block.


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