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First Edition Rules Master
By BCSWowbagger (James Heaney)
 - First Edition Rules Master
 -  
President
Community Contributor
#551043
Happy Friday! Today's Friday question is a bit of a cheat -- I'm asking three in one. :)

Project Babylon right now is trying to figure out what (if anything) should be done about the dreaded Nor mirror match.

There are several Nors in the game that are marked not duplicatable: Terok Nor, Deep Space 9, [Fed] Mirror Terok Nor, and [Car] Mirror Terok Nor. "Not duplicatable" means that, if you seed this card, your opponent can't, and vice versa. If you were planning to seed a copy of that card, you will have to place it out-of-play instead.

(Missions are all not duplicatable, but they work slightly differently: instead of placing your copy out-of-play, you place your copy of the mission on top of opponent's mission and they become a "shared location." But I digress.)

So if your opponent seeds Terok Nor, and you wanted to seed Terok Nor, too bad: you have to remove your copy of Terok Nor from the game. You will use your opponent's copy instead. This has a number of consequences for you:

FIrst, the station is under your opponent's control, not yours. Were you planning to Process Ore here? Not anymore. Were you depending on Docking Pads to download your landing card? Well, hopefully you stocked Hidden Fighter, too! Were you playing Lucas's popular Deep Space Polyamory deck? Opponent will now be discarding your Holoprogram: Cafe des Artistes every turn. There are a total of 16 cards I can think of where station control matters:
Assign Support Personnel, Establish Tractor Lock, Baryon Buildup, Tactical Console, Construct Starship, Defense System Upgrade, Reaction Control Thrusters, Process Ore, Holosuite, Docking Pads, Garak's Tailor Shop, Schoolroom, Security Holding Cell, Science Lab, Dabo, Sisko 197 Subroutine.
Second, under ordinary circumstances, you're stuck. In theory, you can commandeer the station from Ops, taking control for yourself, but you generally will not be able to attack opponent's cards (because opponent is playing the same affiliation as you) and so all opponent really needs to do is leave one guy in Ops and the station is his for the rest of the game.

So, in theory, this situation can suck very, very much -- and it can happen to any player who is using a non-duplicatable Nor and has the bad luck of not going first in a mirror match.

However, in practice, I've never actually heard a single complaint about this. So, here are my Friday questions:

(1) How often do you experience a Nor mirror match? (That is: Terok Nor vs. Terok Nor, DS9 vs. DS9, or Mirror Terok Nor vs. same-affiliation Mirror Terok Nor. DS9 vs Terok Nor is not a mirror match and is considered a related but separate issue, since there are tools to address it like Greater Glory of Cardassia.)

(2) How bad is it to be the player who doesn't control the Nor in a Nor mirror match? We can (and have) developed contrived scenarios where it supremely sucks and completely ruins the non-controller's game -- but how bad is this in real-world gameplay?

(3) How do you play around it? Do you try to commandeer the Nor, despite the challenges? Do you just give up on your Nor-based plans? Do you find it pretty easy to adapt to? Do you stock stuff in your deck to ensure you can survive a mirror match?

And finally, since this is a Friday Question:

(4) If you were on Project Babylon, what would you do about Nor mirror matches (if anything)? We have two ideas we're testing out, but would welcome others.

Kind of a complicated questions, sorry about that, but it's kind of a complicated issue and I hope I explained it clearly.
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First Edition Art Manager
By jjh (Johnny Holeva)
 - First Edition Art Manager
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#551045
Mirror DS9 match-ups are awful, for the reasons you outlined. It's a hidden NPE that I think many players don't realize. "Wait, I can't use my Holoprogram; you're discarding it?" simply because of a die roll.

No other decks are as brittle as DS9 decks via Who Goes First.

This needs to get fixed by rules and design.

Otherwise, who would ever show up with a DS9 deck at even a semi-competitive tournament? That's right. They don't. (of course there are exceptions, I'm speaking generally)
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Executive Officer
By jadziadax8 (Maggie Geppert)
 - Executive Officer
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Grand Nagus
2E American National Second Runner-Up 2020
#551047
Since returning to the game in 2017, I have played one Nor-based deck, a modded copy of Lucas' Deep Space Polyamory deck. When I played it before, I was not worried about a mirror-match, because they weren't really all that popular.

Times are different now with the release of Dogs of War. I decided against a Nor-based deck for my release event due to the increased possibility of a mirror-match. I really didn't want to deal with that.

I'm sorry I don't have any answers to the rest of your questions, but thought this might be useful data regardless.
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By Mr.Sloan
 - Delta Quadrant
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1E Austrian National Second Runner-Up 2020
#551048
jjh wrote: Fri Apr 16, 2021 4:07 pm Mirror DS9 match-ups are awful, for the reasons you outlined. It's a hidden NPE that I think many players don't realize. "Wait, I can't use my Holoprogram; you're discarding it?" simply because of a die roll.
In my opinion only Containment FIeld switch is an NPE, but now that you mention it, yes tahts an NPE as well. Please fix it

@Design/Balance/Errata team :)

Also if both have DS9 there should be a card that allows to get along, like extent Strategema all affiliations of both players on bajor, if both tried to seed ds9, or something.

I know trekcc likes game data for this. but consider: i simply do not build such a deck, because i already know my holoprograms get deactivated based on the dice role so the reason you do not see data from me, is because i already decided against the deck type. wonder how many actually play ds9 in release tournament? and that despite its actually a realy cool theme... but yet an NDE.
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 - The Center of the Galaxy
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Continuing Committee Member - Retired
Community Contributor
#551110
Armus wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:55 pm
Hoss-Drone wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:18 pm I think bottom line, if it isn't broke when I get to do it alone, it's not broke if my opponent and I both do it.
Isn't that the issue though? You both DON'T get to do it. One player gets to do it and the other doesn't and it's all because of a coin toss.
Wasn't the point of the Nor changes to incentivize people to care about who actually controls the place, though? So, isn't this all "working as intended"?
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By nobthehobbit (Daniel Pareja)
 - The Center of the Galaxy
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Moderator
#551114
Yes, who controls the place matters. The problem is that initial control, which is very important for early-game setup, is determined by a coin toss.
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 - Gamma Quadrant
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Continuing Committee Member - Retired
Socialite
#551119
Armus wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:55 pm
Hoss-Drone wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:18 pm I think bottom line, if it isn't broke when I get to do it alone, it's not broke if my opponent and I both do it.
Isn't that the issue though? You both DON'T get to do it. One player gets to do it and the other doesn't and it's all because of a coin toss.
To be clear, I'm in favor of this being a change that is made, so I think maybe you misunderstood me?

The balance of gameplay, to npe to simplicity ratio seems to fall very hard on the side of make the change.
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 - The Center of the Galaxy
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Continuing Committee Member - Retired
Community Contributor
#551123
nobthehobbit wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:42 pm Yes, who controls the place matters. The problem is that initial control, which is very important for early-game setup, is determined by a coin toss.
How else could you determine initial control?
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By Armus (Brian Sykes)
 - The Center of the Galaxy
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Goateed
Community Contributor
1E American National Second Runner-Up 2020
#551127
AllenGould wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:14 pm
Armus wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:55 pm
Hoss-Drone wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:18 pm I think bottom line, if it isn't broke when I get to do it alone, it's not broke if my opponent and I both do it.
Isn't that the issue though? You both DON'T get to do it. One player gets to do it and the other doesn't and it's all because of a coin toss.
Wasn't the point of the Nor changes to incentivize people to care about who actually controls the place, though? So, isn't this all "working as intended"?
When whoever wins the coin toss and gets their station down first can basically "Fortress Bajor" their way around any risk of losing control, then I'd say No, it's NOT working as intended... at least I hope not. If this is the intended result, I have questions.
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By Mr.Sloan
 - Delta Quadrant
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1E Austrian National Second Runner-Up 2020
#551128
nobthehobbit wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:42 pm Yes, who controls the place matters. The problem is that initial control, which is very important for early-game setup, is determined by a coin toss.
so basicly: How to make sure no matter who has the initiatial control, that both players have equal access and therefore equal fun?
new cards or errata could ensure that.
besides the devil needs to become once per game.
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By winterflames (Derek Marlar)
 - Delta Quadrant
 -  
#551134
How would removing the non-Duplicable part and making Stations and Headquarters work the same as ships and personnel, one per player, change things? Right now they are basically treated the same as missions, as far as sharing is concerned. But since you don't really have control over missions, they can't normally "Do Things," the facilities have slightly different approach if you both want to use them.
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First Edition Rules Master
By BCSWowbagger (James Heaney)
 - First Edition Rules Master
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President
Community Contributor
#551147
winterflames wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 6:07 pm How would removing the non-Duplicable part and making Stations and Headquarters work the same as ships and personnel, one per player, change things?
This is a thought-provoking solution! Eliminate the Nor control issue by just errata'ing the relevant Nors to no longer be "not duplicatable"! You could seed Deep Space 9 at Bajor, and your opponent could seed his own copy of Deep Space 9 at the Celestial Temple. (Presumably, you would also then errata I Miss This Office, Center of Authority, and Greater Glory of Cardassia to remove the [Univ] Outpost download.) It would certainly solve the problem!

Would the community find that change too drastic, though? Would it strike too close to the heart of what DS9/Terok Nor is all about?

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