Play Test Journal #2 Shadow of the Dread

Juggernaut, Death Star, Unicron, whatever you call it you’ll have to fight a Dreadnought, more likely sooner rather than later.  I learned this playing against the second person I taught the game to, Chris Dijak.  Failing to best the mighty green titans he sent before me taught me several things.  Don’t count on your opponent rolling low, know what you can sacrifice, and  know your Resources.

As the months have gone by I’ve built my decks and have prepared strategies for dealing with the ubiquitous dreadnought.  First and most importantly is knowing that its a d20, its slow if your foe doesn’t have at least 2-3 engines in play it ain’t moving and even if they have more engines having cards to debuff there E rolls and terraforming out there gas giants works to halt them.  Second don’t fight it, avoid the monster, aim to kill off small ships forcing them to have nothing but high maintenance vessels then cut off there CP production.  But if you must fight the dread, try to prepare for it by having some ambiguous ships to sacrifice to slow its pace, then have sectors and events to boost your attack and take the fight to him, a well timed All Guns Blazing, while you have four or five D-ships Gunships will make the Dreadnought guarding New Terra question just how scary he really is.



“The meek shall inherit the Earth. And the rest of us will go to the stars.” -Omni Magazine

Play Test Journal #1 The First Game

This last fall Casey asked me if I’d be interested learning to play Near Space.  He then handed me a couple decks and the rules and said have fun.  I was going to be the first person to learn to play without being taught from an already experienced player.  One more catch, I had to find another person that hasn’t ever played before and teach them to play as well.

Shortly thereafter I go into the local hobby store like most days and to my luck Cooper Livingston is behind the counter.  Cooper happens to be the Jack of all trades of the gaming community around these parts and seeing the opportunity to learn a new one agreed to a game.  I take a seat in the gaming area of the store and begin reading the rules.  An hour past as I flipped back and fourth checking the wordings in each section and when I found the Terminology section it all fell into place easily.  Then I put together a couple of legal sized decks and move over to Cooper.Time to play.

I get out my dice, Cooper uses the stores behind the counter dice, and we shuffle up and deal out our first game.  It begins how most games I’ve seen begins, we each built a couple of red or blue d4 to explore.  We quickly find the benefits of having green dice out holding sectors, this was before green was modified to count for more in the graveyard.  The most unbalanced thing i found in this game was Clear d4s.  Cooper having the vastness of a store counter full of dice was able to build about a dozen of these ships and load them into a carrier.  This one group of ships crushed everything I sent in fight it, his d4 rolls of 13, 11, 9, etc were far superior to my white d10s, 8s, and 6s.  Cooper defeated me in about an hour and a half by Conquest(putting 100 facets of ships into my graveyard).

I had a great time in the first match with minimum returning to the book for rules verification or wondering how this worked beyond checking the reference cards.  I later addresses my concern of the power of the D-Craft(clear) with Casey and suggested that they have a limit of one “explosion” added into their total, later play testing of this found it far more balanced and in the spirit of the game and eventually helped give pink its own unique ability.