Michael Eckenfels, 6 May 2019
When we last left off, I was doing more infrastructure upgradin’ – not exactly exciting, but necessary to succeed. I want to maneuver BanzaiCorp so that they can have several choices and not just one to make each turn.
The Competition sends a team all the way to Oberon, a moon of Uranus.
Again, they beat me and get a team out further than any human has been before. While not a serious blow, it still makes me feel like I’m falling behind.
I’d like to get that Build 5 card (Antimatter Patent), though I am tempted to do an Explore action on Pallas. I’ve been ignoring that asteroid for a while now, and the team that sits there. I’m hoping this Action might give me a Profit point.
Well, THAT was unexpected. Never thought we’d find water on an asteroid. Most likely it’s massive ice deposits. Regardless, it immediately grants me one Profit (for a total of 11 now, compared to the Competition’s 5). It also would cost less to build a Base here; Pallas has a b3 cost, so now it would only be 2 Build points. Since it’s inside the Radiation border, I could do a Build Action from my HQ to build something there.
Water is a prerequisite for a couple of Bases – Industrial and Shield Factory. The issue though is that both give benefits to a Region. As Pallas is its own Region, either of these wouldn’t do me much good. The Industrial Base doubles a Build action for any Builds in the same Region, and a Shield Factory lets you do a normal (unshielded) Move from that Region to another. So you see, either of these would be MUCH better if they were built in the Jupiter or Saturn Regions.
The other option I have is to build a Research Base. I’ll talk more about that, later, because right now it’s the Competition’s turn.
Iapetus is a moon of Saturn’s. Another ‘first move’ by the Competition. BanzaiCorp needs to get on the ball. I’m of course not referencing actual in-game rewards; it’s the thought that the Competition is getting to these moons before me that’s annoying! (But in a fun way.)
To continue my thought that was so rudely interrupted by the Competition’s turn – a Research Base has no prerequisites so it can be built on any Discovery tile. It gives you your choice of two benefits – either taking an Offers card for free, or moving your Revelation marker one space.
I’m going with a Build action here, using my HQ Build 2 (remember, it doesn’t require a Shielded Build since it’s not in the outside Radiation regions, and costs one less because of the water discovery). My Research Base will do lots of tests because hey, in our story, discovering water on one asteroid might mean more are out there!
I realize now that I didn’t get any benefit when I built that Research Base on Ceres – my bad! I could just take an Offers card to make up for it, or advance my Revelations marker an extra space. Taking an Offers card seems kind of cheesy, especially as I built the Ceres Research Base early in the Planeteers era when the cards weren’t as lucrative – so instead of doing that, I’ll advance my Revelations marker twice. This makes it go one full space past a full revolution, and means I get a Progress Breakthrough card!
I can choose from one of three cards, as pictured here (they’re the darker cards):
Quantum Mechanics would permanently give me an extra card draw for each Research action, so a total intrinsic draw of three cards instead of two.
Energy Fields ensures all my Bases will be Secured. There is a Secure Base you can build, and if you do, you gain one Profit for each Competition Base in the same Region, though you don’t get this if the Competition already has a Secure Base in that Region.
Then, there’s Probe Network, which grants a permanent x2 multiplier to any Explore actions I take.
Right now, the Probe Network one seems to be the most beneficial, so I’m taking that one. Since I’m the first to take this Breakthrough card, I also get two Profit. The score is now 13-5; BanzaiCorp might not be spreading as quickly as the Competition, but we’re sure raking in the cash!
Speaking of spreading out…
The Competition sends a team to Rhea, a moon of Saturn.
Not much else to say about that, though the more they do this the more likely they’ll have Bases start popping up.
One of the interesting things about the Planeteers era is, it’s longer than Mariners. Mariners runs from 2025 through 2069, a total of 44 years; Planeteers runs from 2070 to 2149, which is 79 years. Interestingly enough, the stack of cards I draw from is much larger, meaning we’re going to get a lot of turns out of this one.
I’m moving my team on Pallas to Titan, one of Saturn’s moons.
The move costs 6 Move points, requiring Shielded movement, so I use my 2 Shielded Move points in my HQ and then spend a Science Booster card for its Move 4 value, giving me the 6 Move we need to get there. BanzaiCorp ‘boutta take its share of Saturn’s wealth! I hope.
The Competition make a startling discovery. We were already aware of life in outer space; the Alien Artifact I found on Ceres indicates that. However, nothing was actually alive there. The Competition finds exo-microbes there on Rhea, ending that debate for good.
This gives them an infusion of 2 Profit, upping their score to 7. Mine is still 13, almost double theirs, so it’s not too terrible a situation right now.
I’m going to do an Explore action here on Titan, an e3 space. I have an Explore 2 card in my HQ, so I need to spend another Science Booster card for its Explore 1, giving me enough. I’m hoping this e3 Discovery tile is lucrative…
Instead, it’s a Critical Mission Delay. This costs BanzaiCorp 2 Profit, dropping my comfortable lead significantly; the score is now 11-7.
The only good thing about this tile is it lets you discard it and draw another one. So, let’s see what we have waiting for us after costing our corporation untold billions of dollars…
Another Alien Artifact!
This one is even more special, as it also has water, AND a Revelation 2 reward. Which means, I advance my Revelation Marker another two spaces…which means another complete revolution (glad I recalled I didn’t get a reward previously – at least I hope I’m remembering this right! Considering things I know I forgot to do in the Mariners era, this shouldn’t be too much of a bad balance to the game).
I choose the Quantum Mechanics card, giving me an extra card draw. It also gives me 2 Profit, which makes up the loss we experienced in our mission to Titan.
For now, we’re not doing too badly, though it could be a lot worse. If I screwed up that whole Ceres reward thing – which is sad, as I’ve not had the time to go back and read the AARs to check – I’m sorry for that. But again, you’re getting the gist of the game, and hopefully if you’ve not played this before you’re getting more excited with each chapter you read.
Until next time – thanks for reading.
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