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, Mirror Terok Nor, and 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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