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John Victor
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John Victor

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Looks like we'll know who our Big Two nominees will be.

So, I'll be choosing a third option.

#politics   #presidentialelection  #2016 #thirdparty  
 
"What's Next" is that voters realize that choosing between the lesser of two evils isn't their only option.

We're just a day away from the Indiana primary, and if recent polls are correct, things aren't looking good for those of us on the right who don't want Don
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Donkey Kong REMIX -- WE SUCK -- UNLISTED
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A group of Senators appears to have decided to drop all pretense when it comes to privacy or the rights of companies to provide meaningful encryption to their customers. I would say I'm shocked...but I'm not.
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John Victor

Organized Play Events  - 
 
Anyone going to regionals next month?

I'm thinking about it because they're actually having a tournament near me. Not sure what to take, thought. It's a 90 point build, with a 40 point booster (probably a TCW booster). Straight joust with no obstacles.

I have a feeling Borg and shuttlecraft will make appearances, but I'm not that good at using Borg. And I'm not a fan a shuttles, especially with just 90 points to work with. Although, the Delta Flyer might be worth it. Especially if it can put some upgrades on the booster.
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Organized Play Events  - 
 
Played the TCW3 yesterday. Pulled the Vulcan booster:
Prototype 01 [24]
- Gareb (Captain) [3]
- - Shinzon (Gareb) 9 (Captain) [0]
- - - Rebellion [6]
- Cloaked Mines [3]
- Reinforced Hull Plating [3]
- Disruptor Pulse [5]
Ship Total: 44 SP

Regent's Flagship [32]
- Mirok 4 (Captain) [1]
- Worf (Admiral) [2]
- - Yellow Alert [2]
- Aft Phaser Emitter [1]
- Romulan Security Officer [2]
- Romulan Security Officer [2]
- William T. Riker [4]
Ship Total: 46 SP

Resource: Officer Exchange Program [0]
- Romulan Faction
- Mirror Universe Faction


I fully expected to go 0-3 because I just did not like my fleet. but I went 2-1 instead.

Firstly I'll say Mirok and Prototype were so nice to have. And other than facing another Prototype in my first match, I was the only one repairing damage. In fact, I think we were the only two players to even have the ability to repair (ignoring those who brought Borg because Regeneration never gets used).

First game was a bit of a chess match as we were careful with our maneuvers and focused on the sphere to keep our boosters alive. Especially important for her since she pulled the Interceptor. I took the sphere in the second round by giving up the first shot so she'd weaken its hull. The Interceptor put a hurt on the Seleya, but didn't kill it. So it killed the Interceptor. And that was the only loss.


Second match was close the entire time. He came at me with a beefed up Excelsior and Worf on the Maht-H'a. Luckily he pulled Nunk's Marauder. Which was the first ship to fall after he took down the sphere in round 2. Seleya was next. Then Worf. Regent was on it's last leg, but I was able to put a warp core breach on Excelsior. The very next round was the last, and he rolled the crit.


Third round was brutal. I flat out played it badly, but I'm never sure how to play against DS9. He also brought the Yeager and pulled Romulan. Yeager and DS9 were his torpedo boats, and he brought the High Yield Torp resource to make sure they hurt. I'd never been in a match where torpedoes had been used so effectively. And I wish I 'd realized that the sphere only effective primary weapon range bonuses when I built my fleet. I went after the sphere, and that was my mistake since he ignored it. I placed Seleya first, and he placed DS9 and Belak next. So what I should have done is placed my other ships in the other corner and slow ran Seleya. Then I would have pulled him away from being holed up in the corner with the station, otherwise he would have given me the sphere. I did kill the Yeager, but he still wiped me out.



From what I heard, there were a lot of close matches today. This turned out to be a really good and fun OP.
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Discussion  - 
 
The next top list on the podcast I was part of was about our greatest achievement in 2015, and goal for 2016.

My biggest achievement last year came as a total surprise. Q-Continuum Month 2, the one with the moon and the mission tokens, was the first OP I ever went 3-0. With each match being a fun combination of maneuvering, attacking, and gathering tokens, it was really a fun and intense event. And Q-Continuum was the first tournament I won. And I believe it came down to the last match.

So my goals for next year are the same. Go 3-0 in an event. And win a tournament. They don’t have to be the same one this time. I just want to make sure our venue stays interesting. And grab a bunch of glory for myself.
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Organized Play Events  - 
 
Illness and lack of time have kept me from updating. So a quick recap of what's happened the last couple of months.

Void OP was interesting. Got Bioship Omega because everyone pulled the other blinds, and that was the last one left for me. :p Played my first shuttlenaught, using Quark's Treasure with Queen Prime. But I didn't build it quite right. Think I only won one match. But it was fun to chase down a cardassian ship with the Treasure as it tried to turn enough to get it in arc!

Doomsday Machine OP was kind of disappointing. Partly because the DMT really wasn't a factor, even after we changed the event so it always moved 1 forward, even if it didn't have a ship locked. But mostly because it was my first time playing flying the station, I didn't build all that well, and my opponents brought builds with a lot of attack dice. Lost both and got a bye. Pulled another Lakota, though. So having two Upgraded Phasers is nice.

Regionals was the big event, obviously. And we had the largest turn out in the country, with 19 players! Pulled the mirror Vor'cha, to play with my scout cube and Tinyprise.

Lost my first match to a brutal bioship build. Second opponent had a really clever strategy of jumping a Galor to my side of the board. But I was able to outlast and it came down to our Toh'Kats facing each other. My roll was better. Lost the last match from a stupid mistake. Could have taken out his Excelsior, but thought, "nah, my Toh'Kat can take it out. So why waste my Mag charges on it." Completely forgetting that Spock on Excelsior was shooting first. And it took out my Toh'Kat. So I was down a ship, instead of him. Which was brutal since his other two ships were the Enterprise-E and Bioship Omega.

Still, had a good time, and am looking forward to next year.
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Discussion  - 
 
The Warp Core Breech podcast just released our best and worst awards for 2015.

What do you all think of our results?

http://warpcorebreachpodcast.libsyn.com/
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Discussion  - 
 
My 4th and latest segment on the Breach just went up. It's about tweaking the OPs and their rules.

Lately I've been hearing complaints about OP events being just jousts. Even though they have mission elements, those can pretty much often be ignored, which boils the OP back down to straight jousting. 

Hasn't always been the case, though. Some OPs have had refreshing twists. The Borg collective tourneys had 3rd party enemies and semi-cooperative play. The Arena OP broke up the joust, and made it essential to play to the theme.

But the truth is, those have become the exception. So what can we think of for WizKids to add some spice to our tournaments? What tweaks can we use at our own venues to do the same thing?

Well, the easiest change is adding more obstacles. Throw two planets close enough together and swarms can’t run side by side, and that’ll help break up jousts. Or maybe a handful of debris or asteroids that slowly move, like the Pegasus scenario. Obstacle tokens that provide different effects like gravity (slow ships down depending on range, things like that). All these changes not only bring something we don’t usually see in events, they help make those smaller, more maneuverable ships, that never get much play, appealing. Hey, with tokens everywhere, that Interceptor 5 that never leaves the box, but can park itself on top of an obstacle without penalty, starts looking good.

Now, imagine having matches with 3, or even 4, players at the same time. True, could be difficult to design and run. Have to make sure everyone has the same setup, same opportunities to interact with mission elements. But what a whole new dynamic those kinds of matches would bring. If nothing else, imagine the chaos and fun of a 3 or 4 player deathmatch.

Now I'm not necessarily saying we should change official events by throwing in our own obstacles and whatnots. But maybe we host our own side events. Say when a store needs to clear out extra boosters or prize ships. Then we can do whatever we want. Make up our own missions. This would sure help break up the jousting feel, if WizKids never get around to mixing things up themselves.

And if we want to make changes to official matches, they don’t need to be drastic. We can fairly easily make official OPs better by just ramping up the integration of event elements. Make the bonuses worth more points, so then there's more incentive to go after them. No one wants to risk getting table wiped just to go after 40 points. One of the great things about Q Continuum Month 2 was that the obstacles not only broke up that straight jousting, but getting mission tokens became very important in some of our matches.

But, we can still get those mission tokens into play without even a single point change. In fact, we started doing this at our venue, and it’s brought renewed vigor to our play.  The tournament winner still gets a prize ship, just like normal. But instead of the other ships going to second and third place, or the redshirt, we’ve changed it up. Now, after giving out that first place ship, we give the second ship to the player with the most mission tokens. Then, for the remaining players, we treat each token they collected as an entry into a drawing for the last ship. And there are a lot of other ways we could divvy the ships. However it’s done, though, it keeps players from being knocked out early. And that helps keep people feeling competitive. Because we've all had that demoralizing feeling when you know there's no way to come back and win anything, but you still have to keep playing. 


Then there are house rules. We could probably get into a whole litany of house rules. But I think I’ll save those for another time.


So, part of this list is things I'd love WizKids to begin adding to the OPs. But there's no reason we can't make our own adjustments to keep things fresh and fun. As long as you keep thinking outside that box.
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Discussion  - 
 
My third segment for the podcast is another ship build.

The Independent faction hasn’t been getting a lot of love in recent waves, so we’re going to give them something they need: a battleship. Because other than the Soong, they don’t have a heavy hitting tank.

This’ll be another Next Gen ship, but we’ll have to take some liberties since it’s wasn’t completely fleshed out for our needs in its lone episode. I don’t know how WizKids would handle it, but we’ll just make some logical assumptions...and create a Husnock Warship.

This ship is beefy. 6 Attack, 1 Agility, 5 Hull, 6 Shield, for 36 SP, Only has  a Front 90 arc since that’s all we saw. Standard action bar like a Fed. 1 crew, 2 tech, 2 weap. Generic drops a shield and tech. It maneuvers like the Sovereign with speed 2 red turns.
Text: “You may Target Lock a ship at Range 1 in your forward firing arc as a free action.”

Pretty useful when you’ll be throwing 7 dice.


Now comes our assumptions since we didn’t see captain or crew. So we’ll take our cues from other factions.

Husnock Commander 
5 SP, Skill 7, 1 Elite Talent, Independent, Unique 
“Disable this card to avoid spending a target lock to fire a secondary weapon. You may then spend the target lock to reroll the results of the attack. If you reroll, place an Auxiliary Power Token beside your ship.”

A bit ofsynergy with the ship text there.


Now, one thing we did learn is the Husnock had a Hideous Intelligence, so that’ll be our first Elite Talent. 6 SP, Independent, Unique 
“During the planning phase, after all maneuvers have been set, discard this card to target up to three ships within Range 1-2. Look at the dials of all the ships. You may change the speed of each ship by 1. You cannot select a red maneuver or a maneuver not on a ship’s dial. For each ship’s dial changed after the first, place an Auxiliary Power Token by your ship.

You may change your ship’s maneuver.”

The last line is separate, so if nothing else, you can just change your maneuver. But this card’s power is setting up your opponent. That’s why it’s such a pricey discard.


Our second Elite Talent is Razing Fire. Another 6 SP, Independent, Unique 
“When attacking with your primary weapon, discard this card and disable at least two shields. For each pair of shields disabled, target an enemy ship in your forward firing arc. Immediately make an attack against each ship. You cannot take or receive any free actions, or make any other attacks, this round.”

Free attacks of at least 6 dice each is easily worth a 6 point discard.


Our crew is a Husnock Warrior, 3 SP, Independent 
“ACTION: Discard this card to target a ship at Range 1. Roll 3 Attack dice against the target ship. These dice cannot be modified, and the target ship rolls no defense. For each critical result, disable a shield on the target ship. If all shields become disabled, also disable the captain, or one crew of your choice, on the target ship.”

Basically a way to set a ship up for the attack round.


Tech time.

Configuration Upgrade, 5 SP, Independent
“Add +1 to your ship's Hull and Shield.
Every time you defend, you may place one Auxiliary Power Token next to your ship to reroll one blank result up to two times. 

This upgrade costs +4 SP for any ship other than a Husnock ship. No ship can have more than one Configuration Upgrade.”

The fluff here being that, when the Enterprise encountered the Husnock ship again, it was bigger and badder.


Full Speed 
Tech, 3 SP, Independent
“If you reveal a straight maneuver this round, you may disable this card to add 1 to your ship’s speed. Treat this maneuver as a white maneuver.”

Great way to make that 6 red into a 7 white.


Last tech is Feedback Wave, 4 SP, Independent
“When an attack is declared against your ship, and you have any active shields, you may immediately discard this card before the attack is rolled to cancel one damage from the attack and inflict the remaining damage on the attacking ship instead of yours. Your ship rolls no defense against this attack. All critical results are treated as hits. 

This card costs +3SP for any ship other than a Husnock ship.”

Basically a modified version of the Borg Feedback Pulse.


Finally, two weapons, starting with Antiproton Beam
6 Attack, 6SP, Range 1-2, Independent
“ATTACK: Spend your Target Lock and place three Time Tokens on this card. 

You may convert one battlestations to a hit result, and you may reroll one blank result. 

You may fire at an enemy ship in range, not in your forward firing arc, with - 3 attack dice.”


And Particle Weapon, 4 Attack, 5 SP, Range 1, Independent 
“ATTACK: Disable this card and place and Auxiliary Power Token beside your ship to make this attack. 

Instead of inflicting damage, each critical result disables a shield on the target ship and is resolved before any hits. If all of the target ship's shields are disabled, any remaining critical results damage the hull as normal. The opposing ship rolls no defense against this attack. 

You may fire this weapon in any direction.”


And that’s our ship. Feel free to try it out and make changes. Be sure to let us know what changes you think make the ship more playable while keeping it balanced. In the meantime, keep thinking outside that box.
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Great pizza and food on general. A shame that they'll only be open for takeout starting this August. But still totally worth ordering a meal to go.
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Decent hotel and casino. If you plan on going up the tower, just know there's going to be a wait once night falls and the temperature drops. But it is a great view when the city is lit up. My only complain is that hotel let a timeshare selling company misrepresent that they were giving a tour of a new facility for the hotel. Instead, they ended up 'kidnapping' my sister and her new husband for over 5 hours, not wanting to let them go despite being told no a number of times. If the Stratosphere is going to let these people operate on the premises, then they need to be better aware of what's going on. As it is, I think the hotel owes my sister a comped night for the day of vacation they lost and insulting salesmen they had to deal with.
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A bit expensive, but good food. Has been getting really busy at lunch, so go early.
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