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Fire At Will

by Chris Heard, Decipher.com Writer

18th June 2022

As part of our release schedule for The Motion Pictures Remastered, and to celebrate 20 years since the original The Motion Pictures, we have decided to reprint several preview articles from the original The Motion Pictures release schedule on Decipher.com, originally printed back in 2002. We've got seven articles, one for each day of the preview week, plus a word search. These articles have been reprinted in their entirety, with links and images updated to point to Remastered cards. We hope you enjoy these "remastered" Decipher articles. --Daniel Matteson, Writing Team Manager

Fire At Will

by Chris Heard (uzo@unicomplex.org)

It's been two years and four expansions since Star Trek CCG players last got to enjoy new tactic cards. Now, The Motion Pictures expansion offers three possible additions to your Battle Bridge side deck. Each tactic's usefulness depends on the type of deck you're using and the type of damage you want to do.

Isolytic Burst

Isolytic BurstIf you're already thinking about playing Son'a, Isolytic Burst makes them that much more attractive. In several respects the Isolytic Burst is similar to other ship-specific tactic cards like Breen Disruptor Blast and Full Phaser Spread, but its damage-dealing qualities are unusual. No tactic card introduced prior to The Motion Pictures expansion can reduce a target's RANGE by 3 like Isolytic Burst can. Even more significantly, when used as your current tactic, Isolytic Burst kills an additional personnel aboard your target ship or facility. This feature makes Isolytic Burst work very nicely in conjunction with damage markers that don't kill personnel, but otherwise hamper ship operations – you can skill kill two personnel while having another, non-fatal effect.

Riker Maneuver

Riker ManeuverWith an attack bonus of 4, the Riker Maneuver is already near the top of the tactic heap. Add William T. Riker, and the attack bonus leaps to 7, the highest of any tactic currently available (unless you have six or more ships firing with Attack Wing – a relatively uncommon occurrence). Of course, Federation attack restrictions ensure that you don't send Riker on a killing spree, and the Riker Maneuver only works at a nebula (making it particularly attractive for Patrol Neutral Zone decks). Still, attack +7 can give an aggressive opponent reasons to think twice. The Riker Maneuver is also useful against opponents who like to gang up on lone ships, since a direct hit on one ship will also damage another one present. Downloading Plasma Fire may not seem terribly exciting, but including Photon Torpedoes in your Battle Bridge side deck as damage markers could enhance the Plasma Fire's effectiveness.

Target Warp Field Coils

Engine ImbalanceTarget Warp Field CoilsLike Isolytic Burst, Target Warp Field Coils slaps ships with an impressive RANGE -3 when placed as a damage marker. Its attack bonus, defense bonus, and hull damage are average. This tactic's unusual download is, however, its most remarkable feature. If not cured, Engine Imbalance adds insult to the RANGE reduction's injury. Combine this tactic with Evasive Maneuvers to minimize your opponent's opportunity to cure Engine Imbalance and maximize your own opportunity to chase them down and finish them off on your next turn if you can't score a direct hit the first time (e.g., if firing on ships using Ablative Armor). A crippled ship can potentially be better for you than a destroyed ship in some circumstances, as your opponent might find it easier to retrieve a ship from the discard pile than to repair one in play.

As you contemplate new deck types enabled by The Motion Pictures expansion, consider including these new tactics in your Battle Bridge side deck. Experiment with the combinations that will give you an edge over your opponent in space battles. Lock targeting scanners ... and fire away!

March 26, 2002

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