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Author Topic: Headlining Scoring Card  (Read 3803 times)

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pietshaq

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Headlining Scoring Card
« on: December 03, 2014, 03:00:08 pm »
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Hi!

I just produced an article regarding headlining Scoring Card on my blog:
http://zimna-wojna.pl/headlining-scoring-card/

Feedbacks and comments are welcome (preferably on the blog although it is pre-moderated).
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lambolt

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2014, 05:07:33 am »
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fantastic, I need to read this a few times though. Particularly liked the defectors comments, hadn't thought of the possibility to try and get a scoring card cancelled. Many times holding a bad scoring card I think maybe its best to headline it and get rid of it without wasting an AR, especially if it feels like you trying to make it better in that region (to score) just makes it obvious to the other player you have that card, and you waste most of an entire turn going back and forth, with the result that you still don't get any better in that region. So far, this seems to happen to me a lot!
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budzo

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2014, 12:05:08 pm »
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I guess i would take our hand to consideration whether to headline scoring card or not. It is much less problem to headline scoring card if u do not hae nothing aggresive in ur hand. The decision is tougher when u do and u need to do that. Like if u have lets say 3 scorings (in that case ud certainly want to put one of them) and Grain Sales to Soviets (this card is extremally good in he but not that good later in the turn). Headlining Grain is worth every Action Round that u can take later ... for most part.

I guess headlining scorings also depends on the time of play (is it early, mid or late war) and of the cards that are already on the discard. For example u do not he central america as usa if Fidel and/or Liber Theology are not gone and u dont have them.

I personally avoid headlining scorings unless:

 it is early war and opponent does not have the possibility to flip region in headline. T1 headline scoring card is almost always a good play by both sides (assuming standard Europe setup and no add inf in Iran) with the exception of headlining Asia as Usa wchich can be hard countered by Vietnam Revolts - i dont assume someone is that brave/stupid to headline decol wo defectors AND duck and cover in his hand).

Headlining scoring card is most dangerous in mid war when most of the regions are not stabilized (any side can flip it in 1-2 moves) and I personally dont do that very much unless it is sth awkward situation (like I have 5 scorings in hand or every other card that i headline damages me).
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pietshaq

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2014, 03:48:53 am »
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Assuming no extra influence in Iran US ME Scoring may face a quite nasty Nasser: a card USSR slightly prefers to hold in the deck until Sadat is gone than play in the Early War but often finds himself with no better candidates for headline. Besides, the regions scored in the Early War are usually quite flippy then.

Until Mid War Europe usually gets stable. So does Asia which can be dramatically affected by Ussuri, Indo-Pakistani War, Voice of America, Brush War, or simply China Card (not in the headline ;)) but Asia Scoring in the Mid War is generally a safe play, especially for US.
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budzo

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2014, 01:01:12 pm »
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I saw Nasser headline T1 i think once and only by unexperienced players (u give usa easy coup target and get rid of nasser wchich is bad). But i assume that with +1 or +2 Iran mechanics are slightly different and couping Iran is not that obvious anymore.

If i have several scorings in hand during mid war id certainly healdine Asia (in fact i had that situation recently and did that) - but lets say its turn 6 and abm is not gone so that ur almost sure opponent have it - Would go for Asia scoring if u do not have 5-1 adv ? So i guess - as always - it depends.

Europe - Europe can be stable (mid war) if ur overcontrolling France by 3, Italy by 4 West Germany by 3 and NATO activated. Otherwise u can be hit with: De Gaulle (experienced soviet players rarely play the event in early war), Soc Govs, Sues Crisis, Brush War or even pure ABM Treaty played for ops. As USSR player i would certainly do that if it gives me a chance to flip European battleground and I have the right to expect Europe Scoring that turn.

I once had a game when opponent played all ops early war in europe and turn 2 i was purged and had no 3 ops card and he had almost all 4s. He got Europe controll but after second scoring. Then he spent all his focus to secure Europe. Turn 7 - i have 15 VPs advantage. Headline: Europe Scoring, Pope (breaks controll of Poland) - no need to add he scored Europe heavily but lost turn later due to collapsing in every other region.
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pietshaq

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2014, 05:40:29 am »
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Well, if you control Europe and risk scoring it in headline  ;)

Headlining scoring depends on your personal tolerance for risk, of course. Even when you haven't seen ABM prior to turn 6. and you don't have it, it's still more probable that your opponent doesn't have it than that he does. And even if he does, this is not so straightforward headline. Of course, if I dominate Asia with 4-2 bg lead this would be risky. On the other hand, if your Soviet opponent headlines ABM successfully against Asia, you may never get a chance to score even at 3-3.

The situation in Europe given by you as an example is unusual. US hardly even fights for France (and domination) when de Gaulle and Suez are still both in the deck. I assumed US leads 3-2 in battlegrounds and has domination (otherwise one or two battlegrounds lost in the headline are not very relevant unless they give USSR domination; Soc Govs are unlikely to do more damage). In that case Brush War is extremely unlikely to succeed against Italy, which is usually adjacent to 3 US-controlled countries and 0 USSR-controlled.

Your comments present the point of view of a player with almost no risk tolerance. Such a player hardly headlines scoring, that's true. However, I'm not sure whether TS is the best game for someone like this. I'd suggest chess instead.
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budzo

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2014, 06:42:49 pm »
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Nah chess is too difficult for me. To be good in chess u have to pracitce all life long, that would be too much for me. I admire people who play chess well though.

About risk in TS ... i guess people that win most games are the people who avoid risk and play their best moves considering all options. They take risk only when its absolutely necessery lets say that risk is the best play at that given moment. Why should I play risky in a competitve game if theres no need to ?

With that example of my game and Europe controll... sure it was a mistake by that player but consider opposite example: usa has Europe controll and ussr is 16 vps ahead. Would u say that headlining Europe scoring by USA is risky? I would say it would be the necessery play, in fact may be the only way to win (u score Europe before his scoring, u avoid Aldrich Ames and so on), but still risky.

As US i always fight for France if there is a possiblity to do so. If opponent is determined to get France i give it to him... it costs him in other regions (for example he plays to W Germ before de Gaulle and then to France... lot of ops). But usually my strategy is: trigger Sues before de Gaulle and then play the Gaulle and 3 France maybe even 4 with contaiment.

or i can open 5 France 1 Gr 1 Turkey and let ussr think and consider risks.

Soc Govs can flip one coutnry. Brush War can hit Italy (USSR player often takes Greece and Spain with Marshall Plan and then trigger it ... u have 50-50 chance to get Italy in that case and make 6-11 vps difference depending on the count of non bgs. All that with one card... I would take the risk.

As for ABM ... if it is your only 4 and ME is not out yet u should headline it. If u have RSP and ABM - huh thats tough decision. Even with ME gone ABM headline is the only chance to coup Asia (well not only but easiest and for the most part best).

So with extremaly unfortunate situation: u lead bgs 4-3 (with Taiwan) and 8-7 in countries. U headline Asia opponent headlines ABM and scores 5-6 on Thai coup. BAM! u just lost 10 vps.
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pietshaq

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2014, 02:45:40 am »
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About risk: sometimes a careful play is a risk itself, yet an invisible one. For example, if you carefully avoid risky moves, you take a risk that in Turn 10 you'll miss 2 Ops to take enough to win just because you hadn't got rid of DEFCON suicide cards before.

About your example with US Europe Control: it depends on the turn and situation. If I was scared about Aldrich Ames I'd take the risk. Otherwise, I'd wait. In either case I'd ask myself: assume you headline Euro Scoring and earn 7 VPs but not win on spot. How do you feel about the Final Scoring?

Your scenario about fighting for France does assume Suez is gone already. In your previous post you had mentioned Suez as a card which is still in the deck.

About Marshall: Spain/Portugal is often unaccessible for USSR when Marshall is triggered. Greece is indeed. But sometimes you just have to focus your attention elsewhere. After all, this is just Europe: provided it is not controlled, it hardly gives much VPs.

Your ABM example is good but this is an extreme situation and one in which you indeed don't headline Asia Scoring. In my article I gave an example of 22VP swing in a headline. These are rarities.

As USSR I might consider not headlining ABM because I prefer to be the last to perform the battleground coup and several US or neutral Mid War events allow US coup battleground during a headline. Of course, NORAD changes this perspective.

As US I often see some better headline than ABM actually: RS/P, Grain Sales, Junta (preparing for a bigger coup with ABM), etc. Besides, ABM is a nice AR7 play to increase DEFCON, NOT coup and hope USSR can't drop DEFCON back to 2 in a headline and AR1 if you have Lone Gunman. An unusual way to avoid DEFCON suicide.
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sspiker

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2015, 12:18:03 pm »
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I always try to play a scoring card in the headline, unless I think I have a reasonable shot at improving my position.

I rarely play heavily into Europe during the Early War; as long as its a draw, I'm happy to score Europe (as either player). The weak domination in the Mid East makes that an easy headline, too. Better than investing multiple action rounds and ops for only a 3+ VP win. Obviously, I will always try to improve my position in Asia so I tend not to headline that unless I'm already well ahead.

Mid-War has more variance, but SE Asia is an easy score, and scoring South America on Turn 4 when no one has influence is also an easy decision, particularly if there's several fires to put out on the board.

I understand the risk of your opponent headlining a card that affects the region you're about to score, but in my experience that only rarely happens:

1) You can guess which events are more likely to be played than others (Junta, ABM, Liberation, Decol/CRG, Allende, South Africa/PEC, etc.) and judge accordingly. Once several of those cards have been played, particularly the region-specific ones, that makes scoring in the headline a lot more palatable, particularly if there's little to be gained otherwise.

2) Mid-East and Central America, in particular, offer very weak Domination bonuses, so I'm less inclined to bother to invest heavily unless I can quickly and easily improve my position, I'm desperate for VPs, or there's nothing left to score.

There's nothing more annoying then spending an entire turn, and several high-value ops cards, just to score 3 points for dominating Middle East.
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budzo

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2015, 12:14:53 pm »
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If its turn 2, France not taken, Soc Govs and/or De Gaulle gone or i have it - Id certainly fight for Europe domination as USA. Everyone is so obsessed about Asia while Europe gives comparable amount of vps. U need to seek VPs everywhere u can thats what this game is about.
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sspiker

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Re: Headlining Scoring Card
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2015, 11:39:50 pm »
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Certainly if an ideal situation arises then I might go for Europe. But how often do you get that scenario you described, while also avoiding things like Warsaw Pact, Comecon, and Romanian Abdication that make it easy for the Soviets to block, forcing you to invest even more ARs and IPs on the Mediterranean 3 (thus blocking the effectiveness of Marshall Plan) or wasting them into 3/4 stability countries?

19 times out of 20, I haven't found investing a lot in Europe worth it, especially compared to Asia. And even if your opponent gets the early advantage in Asia, its still valuable to fight for points there.
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