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by Johannes Klarhauser, Staff Writer

27th October 2009

One of the cards in Legacy takes us back to the very first days of the ST:CCG. Back in Premiere, there was this handy little Federation personnel called the Exocomp. A personnel card representing an artificial life-form primarily built for repair tasks, it let you repair your ship without returning to an outpost – in addition to providing an extra ENGINEER and very high INTEGRITY of nine (Exocomps are the Picards of repair robots).

With Kruge running wild at this year's World Championship, it seems like now would be a good time to introduce the Exocomp to the Second Edition environment. In the days of cards like Prefix Codes, Kruge, and blue and green versions of the U.S.S. Prometheus, the ability to repair damage to your ship will certainly be a welcome addition.

As expected, the Exocomp is not a personnel in Second Edition, but an equipment, which means it is no longer restricted to the Federation and can be used by every affiliation.

Also, in 2009, the Exocomp does not even need two full turns to repair a ship. Instead, it can prevent the placing of a Damage card in the first place. The price, however, is to sacrifice the brave little Exocomp; unlike its First Edition cousin, it won't be able to help you out more than once.

Much like Grav-Plating Trap, you can use the Damage prevention right when the Damage is about to hit you, or you can wait until the Order phase to remove an already-placed Damage card. Now 'all of a sudden' nasty things like Disable Sensors won't automatically lock your ship down for a turn, Prefix Codes won't deactivate your Shields, and Quantum Filament won't turn into a painful number of additional stops. Cards like Gomtuu will still stop all personnel involved, but at least your ship will keep its Range up.

Keep in mind, though, that the repair ability of the Exocomp only works on Damage cards your opponent owns, so you cannot abuse it to remove your own Exceed Engine Output that you have used to move your Phoenix to another mission.

The other bonus that the Exocomp gives First Edition players is the ENGINEER skill. In Second Edition, this translates to the addition of Engineer to all of your Programming personnel present! This makes the Exocomp the first Equipment card that gives a permanent skill bonus that triggers off of a skill other than the old 'classification' skills of ENGINEER, SCIENCE, and MEDICAL. In fact, now it's possible to use multiple equipment cards to initiate a chain reaction of skill bonuses: Equip your Programming personnel with an Exocomp, and now that the personnel has Engineer, he or she will also benefit from Engineering Kits and Engineering PADDs to gain Physics and Astrometrics as well. Especially Androids like Lal (Beloved) or B-4 (Dangerous Simpleton) can now turn their single base skill of Programming into a much more useful skillset – and don't forget Lal's ability to gain any two skills on top of that.

Beware the bane of every powerful equipment, though: I hear that several players have recently ordered new shipments of Self-"Stealing" Stem Bolts...


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