Wizkids released the scenarios for the Star Trek: Attack Wing “Resistance is Futile” event series this week, and my first impression of the rules is very positive. All three scenarios can be found here. Participation prizes for these events are “Enhanced Shields”, “Advanced Targeting Systems”, and “High Yield Photon Torpedoes”. While the full text of each card is not yet available, I could pick out that benefits of all three are available to your entire fleet, and appear to give a reserve of spare shield tokens, allow multiple target locks from each ship, and cause torpedoes to do more damage, respectively.
The Collective event series showed us why civilization should fear the Borg. The ever-present and nigh-invulnerable Borg Cube Tokens that punished players for showing up to play throughout the Collective are gone for Resistance is Futile, and instead the Borg are now the undertones of the events, the reason the scenarios work as they do, a spectre in the night ready to assimilate any who fail at their mission. Gone are the “cooperative” events; now it’s kill or be killed, because only one fleet is going to make it back home from the Delta Quadrant.
Scenario one of Resistance is Futile, Dark Frontier, plays as a standard combat engagement, with a caveat that both players fleets are attempting to hide from the Borg while destroying each other. Each ship starts the scenario with 4 mission tokens, and loses one of those tokens each time they end the activation phase or fire weapons within range 1-2 of any board edge. These tokens are also worth 5 fleet points each if they are retained to the end of the game. This will become a chess match for many, as players will have to weigh the value of being unpredictable and/or safe from enemy fire against the cost of losing fleet points for moving and firing from the edge of the map. Borg ships will do well in this event thanks to their tight maneuvering, while Klingons and Romulans will have their agility hampered by the tight confines of the safe zone. Winning this event will earn players the The Avatar of Tomed, a Borg-assimilated Romulan D’Deridex class ship.
Scenario two, Unimatrix Zero, introduces a completely new element to OP play: multiple fleets. Players must build two separate fleets, one designated as “Borg”, the other designated as “Rebel”, gaining appropriate bonuses and discounts in fleet building for each fleet. Players will use each fleet once in the first two rounds, and the higher ranked player of the two chooses which player will play each side in the third round. I love this concept on the surface, and would very much like to adapt it for a casual X-Wing Miniatures event, but I can hear the hate boiling now. Many players will legitimately complain that they are at a disadvantage in Unimatrix Zero if they do not own Borg ships, although the difference is very small (a one point discount on 5-8 items essentially buys a Borg fleet one extra upgrade at most). This does have the appearance of Chris Guild, current lead designer of STAW, continuing to push his golden child Borg on to players. Imagine the outrage of Warhammer 40K players if they were told they would have to bring two armies to a tournament in order to play, and one of them had to be Space Marines! Still, the prize is worth the hassle, as the winner of this event walks away with an assimilated Klingon B’Rel class ship, Assimilated Vessel 80279.
Scenario three, appropriately titled Endgame, is the most interesting setting of the series in my opinion. The play area is divided into four sections: two physical (Open Space, Borg Space) each occupying half the board, and two virtual (Transwarp Conduit, and Alpha Quadrant aka “home”). Any ships in Borg space are fired on by unseen Borg ships each turn, but have an opportunity to escape via a transwarp conduit at the edge of the board. Ships within this conduit may either just go home to the Alpha Quadrant (Ship survives, +20 fleet points) or attempt to destroy the conduit for +40 fleet points and all ships currently in the Conduit except the one which got the kill shot take up to 4 damage with survivors count as returning to the Alpha Quadrant. Once the Conduit is destroyed, no other ships may enter the conduit, and are stuck in Borg Space or Open Space, but still count for normal fleet points if they survive to the time limit. The victor of Endgame takes home yet another ship assimilated by the Borg, Assimilated Vessel 64758, a Dominion Galor class ship. Additionally, the overall victor of the series will win Tactical Cube 001, which is obviously the nefarious ship behind all of these assimilations!
With the first of my home venue’s runs of The Collective now complete, I’m very much looking forward to Resistance is Futile, and as usual the gears are already turning on my fleet builds. The Collective was all about whether or not you could outplay your opponent at beating the scenario. Resistance is Futile appears to be a better balance, conflict while respecting the rules of engagement, which will make a lot of our locals happy.
What are your thoughts? Any key points I missed? Let me hear about them in the comments!
– The Tabletop General