Monday, October 01, 2012

Battlestar Galactica: Still The Best Game Ever

Pegasus Expansion
It was that time of year again, time for the 5th Annual Andrew's Bachelor Party, or as my wife puts it, Geekfest 2012. For the third year in a row our main game we agreed to play was Battlestar Galactica, but this time using the Pegasus Expansion. Our first foray in BSG in 2010 can be read about here, and last year's edition can be read here.

Game #1 Battle Report

Sorry, no pictures this time. I was focused too much on the mind games.

There were five of us playing, the same five from the previous two years, so we went in knowing a lot about how each other would react. I picked Helo as my character for a chance to be Admiral or President, and due to the other player's picks I got to be Admiral for the first time I can recall. Yay nukes! Then the loyalty cards were dealt and I learned I was a Cylon. 

The game started with a lot of Cylon attacks and the Galactica and new expansion Pegasus ship took a lot of beatings from Basestar attacks. Humans were struggling and I was very happy inside. Then I made a mistake.

As Admiral I am the one that takes two distance cards and secretly picks one to use for our jumps and the other on the bottom. As a hidden cylon, I used this to try and slow the Galactic down the first jump with a distance of 1, but for the second jump there was a distance 3 that cost two fuel and a population, a nasty card. I picked it and claimed the other card was much worse. 

However, Andrew, who has been the admiral a lot in previous games, called bullshit and used one of his President's quorum cards to allow him to check the top or bottom card of several decks, including the distance deck. UHOH! I crapped my pants as I realized what was coming, and like a deer in headlights I froze. Andrew looked, saw a much less costly distance card, and called me a Cylon. UNable to react I simply said nothing and started to plan my reveal. Bad :( What I should have done was said Andrew was full of crap and he was the fricking Cylon, and if I sold it well enough there could be enough doubt thrown on him to allow me to avoid the brig. Oh well.

To make matters worse, on a subsequent skill check where I had all but admitted I was a Cylon but not revealed, Brian put in a card to sabotage the skill check thinking I would put one in to sabotage as well, but the check revealed three red cards as sabotage. Since the random destiny deck could only contribute two and he was the only person that contributed with red cards, he was outed as well.

Forced into the Short Game Cylon rolls, we played our part with Brian going to the Ressurection ship to accumulate Super Crisis cards (new Pegasus rules) and me staying on Galactica and draining the human green and yellow cards in skill checks to get me into the brig. Eventually they got me there and I continued to sabotage from the brig until I was out of cards and then revealed myself to go to the cylon ressurection ship.

The Galactica was damaged and Brian and I let loose with as many Cylon raider and Basestar activations as possible and I used a super crisis to set the jump track back by two to the start. Faced with no pilots, Vipers, far from jump, five out of six damages, and on the verge of losing, the humans surrendered having not even reached New Caprica.

Game #2 Battle Report

In the second game I selected Apollo for the piloting and chance to be Admiral or President again, but got neither office as Gaius was in play (president) and Helana Cain AND William Adama were in play for Admiral. Sigh. Then I got my Loyalty card and saw I was a Cylon. AGAIN. And Brian was the other Cylon again! Double Sigh.

I decided this time to really play the long game and work to sow discord amoungst the humans. This was severely tested when early on a massive Cylon attack once again threatened the human with severe losses. Brian uses this time to expose himself as a Cylon to try and finish the game early. Metin, a human sitting between me and Brian tries to alleviate some pressure, but does not have the ability to use his special once-a-game power to jump the fleet blindly at a loss of two population and no choice in destination cards.

It comes to me and I have a choice: expose myself and try to drive the strike home, or assume the humans will get out regardless of my actions and play it straight to stay concealed. Metin and Andrew are talking while I think and it comes to light that Andrew suggests and Executive Order to allow Metin to make the jump. I know Andrew has a lot of those cards but I have one too so I decide to make myself look human by using mine to implement the blind jump (still losing two population in the effort anyways).

The wrinkle in my plan is the second loyalty phase where everyone comes under suspicion again anyways. We continue playing but no Cylon fleets show up before we get to New Caprica phase. Brian as a Cylon is trying to hinder as much as a revealed Cylon can but without any space phase and no ability to play super crisis cards, his hands are tied.

During this time Dave gets executed by a failed crisis check and as part of that process he shows all three (Gaius natch) of his Loyalty cards, showing all of them saying "You are not a Cylon" which I, as the hidden cylon, already knew. I used my considerable acting chops to act like I was mind-fucked and bought some doubt that I was the Cylon for a bit.

We get to the final space phase when Galactica (and Pegasus) comes back to save the colonists on New Caprica and I decide to make my move. With Dave and Metin in the Detention I am the only one in space in a Viper defending the colony ships launching from the surface from the Raiders. On my turn I dock the Viper, go to Communications, and order two colony ships to move: an empty one I send off and a population one I send into the teeth of the oncoming fleet (which prompty destroys it).

Revealed, the game goes quickly around the table but I never get another chance to do harm as the humans find ways to get the rest of the colony ships into space and order the jump before I can do more harm. Well played Humans.

* * * * *
Next year maybe I can be a human again for a change. In our group everyone has been a Cylon once in six games except Andrew, and I've only been a human once. 

1 comment:

  1. It's good with Pegasus. A lot of people don't tend to play New Caprica, including me. My reason is due to the amount of time it adds to the game. We play late a night and we're usually pretty tired by that point.

    Next step is to introduce Exodus to the mix!