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Strategy Articles

I don't want that dilemma in my core anymore

by Sean O'Reilly, Staff Writer

26th December 2019

Borg Nanoprobes can be a lot of things. They can be used to heal the wounded as seen in the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Friendship One.”

“I've extracted the nanoprobes.”
“I'll begin reprogramming them.”
“Microscopic machines. Hopefully they'll help us repair your damaged tissue.”
“You said you extracted them. From where?”
“My bloodstream. They maintain my cybernetic implants.”
“Nanoprobes, cybernetic implants. Are others on your crew like you?”
“No, I'm unique.”

They can also be used as an offensive weapon, like when the U.S.S. Voyager crew teamed up with the Borg to take on Species 8472 in “Scorpion, Part II.”

“We could encase the nanoprobes in some of our photon torpedoes. In essence, turn them into biomolecular warheads.”
“Your torpedoes are inadequate. They lack the necessary range and dispursive force.
“Do you have a better idea?”
“We are Borg.”
“I take that as a yes.”
“A multikinetic neutronic mine. Five million isoton yield.”
“An explosion that size could affect an entire star system.”
“Correct. The shock wave will disperse the nanoprobes over a radius of five light years.”

Borg Nanoprobes

Borg Nanoprobes can be a very valuable piece of equipment whether they are a weapon or used the heal.

In First Edition, Borg Nanoprobes could do one of two things: Assimilate an opponent’s personnel just stunned in battle by your [Def] drone or it could nullify most Species 8472-related dilemmas. Those are pretty powerful effects for an equipment card that can be downloaded by multiple personnel.

When we were choosing cards for Inheritance, Borg Nanoprobes was pitched as a possible idea for an equipment card.

A couple of key design elements survived from that initial pitch to the final product.

First, the equipment always cost 5. This was intentional for two reasons. We wanted a card that was powerful (thus its cost) and to give a Borg player the ability to download it with Two of Nine.

Second, the card always had a cost reduction if you commanded a Borg personnel. How much that cost was and the way it worked did change. The original idea was the make the equipment cost -2 for each Borg personnel you command. That was too powerful. It is now just cost -2 if you command a Borg personnel.

Third, there were always two different effects the equipment granted. One prevented the loss of a personnel present, while the other, an Order, helped against dilemmas in your core.

Here’s the original design:

[Equ] (5) Borg Nanoprobes
This equipment is cost -2 for each Borg personnel you command. When your personnel present is about to be killed or assimilated, you may shuffle this equipment into its owner's deck to prevent that.
Order - Destroy this equipment to remove a Species 8471 dilemma in your core from the game.

You can see the game text changed quite a bit to its final version. Instead of preventing just a “kill” or “assimilation,” now the equipment can prevent any loss of command, similar to Population 9 Billion – All Borg. The only thing the equipment won’t do is stop your opponent from capturing your personnel (since you still command them).

We also broadened the Order ability. Instead of removing from the game a Species 8472 dilemma in your core (which we misspelled as 8471 in the original pitch), it now removes from the game any dilemma in your core or on your mission.

That has pretty powerful implications because is very hard to get remove dilemmas in your core.

Do you have a Mugato discarding the top card of your deck every turn? Is Pivotal Destiny hurting your two-mission win strategy? Are you opponent’s Hologram getting smarter with Intelligent Design? Is your opponent trying to win with Terrasphere 8? Now you can do something about it without worrying your opponent will prevent your Old Feelings.

Here is a list of the dilemmas that are placed in your core that Borg Nanoprobes can remove from the game.

But that is not all the Nanoprobes can do. They can also remove a pesky dilemma on your mission. Chula: The Game causing you problems? The Clown: Go Away got you stuck? Timescape preventing you from attempting a mission more than once per turn? Don’t worry about it! Remove the dilemma from the game.

Here is a list of dilemmas played on your mission that Borg Nanoprobes can help get rid of:

Borg Nanoprobes are not infallible. Because it is an equipment, your opponent can take command of your Borg Nanoprobes by “trading” you some titleSelf-Sealing Stem Bolts. They can then use your Borg Nanoprobes to remove from the game one of your dilemmas in their core or on their mission.

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