The Tao of Gaming

Boardgames and lesser pursuits

A few more thoughts on Epsilon Eridani

I played a four player game (and the TaoLing wanted to play a two player game) so I got in two games as Epsilon.

EE isn’t necessarily bad so much as fragile. You must take the influence action and drop mediocre hexes as soon as you get better ones. Other races should do that (it’s rarely worth it to trade an action for a cube) but with EE it’s an absolute must.  You want a few prime hexes. If that requires exploring and discarding early, so be it.

As EE, I’m more likely to start heading to Sector I/II and try to dodge around Aliens.

EE’s main advantage is the huge reserve of points, but don’t discount starting with Plasma Cannons. It seems like most games someone is hurting for a weapon upgrade, and you start with it. This also means that a single upgrade to your interceptors (Replace ION Cannon with Plasma Cannon, add a computer or the Gauss shield) turns your starting fighter and one more fighter into a force that has an edge over ancients. (However, that edge isn’t a huge one. Not something you should be willing to risk early on, unless desperate). The Fusion Drive and Gauss Shield aren’t bad, if you get the Fusion power source, you can have interceptors that move 2 hexes, have an initiative edge, and do double damage. This makes them a reasonable match for most races cruisers … (for a brief window).

So, in terms of technology, if Plasma Cannons are missing from the early available technologies, that’s a decent plus. Seeing Fusion Drives is a minor plus. Lots of advanced robotics is another plus. (No improved hull is also a big plus).

The way to win with EE is the way to win with any race — steamroll. Plan on spending ~9 of your stockpile on T1, 9 more on T2, and then 5 on T3. If you’ve managed to build up your income and raked in a few discovery tiles, you’ll be able to operate evenly.  The two missing discs hurt, but no more than Planta’s long term initiative problem.  If you hit a double alien, it may be worthwhile to try and build a dreadnought and roll into it, but even ignoring the horrific 3:1 conversion, it would take several actions to upgrade it.  I suppose it’s possible, but I suspect the “just burn up your money reserves” option is more stable.


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Written by taogaming

August 19, 2012 at 7:38 pm

Posted in Specific Games, Strategy

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3 Responses

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  1. I really like Epsilon Eridani’s ability to consume a good for a VP and a card. Those military windfall worlds with only 1 defense are terrific with EE. And … what? … oh, never mind!

    At WBC there was a Facts in Five category that required people to come up with a constellation starting with the letter “E” and I didn’t get it. Eridanus should have been obvious to a Race for the Galaxy player!

    Eric Brosius

    August 19, 2012 at 8:05 pm

  2. Seems like taking the center helps solve the economy of systems problem, and your starting military advantage gives you a reasonable shot at it.

    Frederic Bush

    August 20, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    • Well, EE’s problem is that they really aren’t that much faster than most races. Their military advantage is reasonable against ancients, but not quite there against GCDS. You could convert a lot of money, but probably best to do a few explores and then upgrade your cruiser on T1, build it on T2. (If you get improved hull research, that’s enough to make your one cruiser a reasonable shot against an ancient). But you’ll still need two cruisers against the GCDS. So you are at T3-T4 for the GCDS. I think EE (like most races) should be racing for discoveries … a free cruiser or 6 mineral (or Axon computer and a few other tiles) will greatly speed your GCDS threat.

      So T3 vs GCDS is possible but takes a bit of luck, T4 is reasonable. The problem is, that’s true for most races.

      Draco should be threatening that (via T1 explore Sector I and coexist, which gives great resources).; Planta also has a decent T3 attack. Orion could (in theory) attack on T2, T3 is usually fairly easy (Orion is, IMO, the best race). Perhaps this points to the EE early dreadnought gambit …. in theory they could do explore Ring I twice (assuming they discard the first one), upgrade DN. (Plasma + Gauss). T2 Upgrade DN (Power + Computer?), build it, attack? That will cost a pretty penny, but possible. Not great odds, either. Improved Hull should be in there. Still, not unreasonable. Maybe the way to go.


      August 20, 2012 at 10:12 pm

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