Friday, 24 January 2014

The Koraga Crew!

Today I'll take a look at the rather meager crew offering in the Klingon Koraga Expansion. I'll generally agree with a recent commenter in that the Klingons haven't really been given a whole lot to do since they were released- although I don't bemoan this fact. It's very good for the game that there is a "beginner" faction. I bet most would agree that the Klingons aren't exactly for "beginners", but they certainly are understandable to beginners, and that's a good thing.
A player staring the game can be given the Klingons and told "shoot at things in your arc, try to stay together, if you're not cloaked, cloak" and that's kind of all you need to do. You will do relatively well at most tournaments and as you get better, you'll do even better. The Klingons scale with experience nicely, but often leave the more experienced player looking for something more- there really isn't too much there, and if you start bogging down your list with upgrades, you're kind of missing the point. The Klingons are a perfect tool for teaching Formation Flying, Action Economy, and the value of attacking and cloaking. A player that learns these lessons early on, can very easily apply them to other factions and see their relative strengths (Federation gets to do WHAT with Engage?) and weaknesses (These Dominion ships sure are underpowered!) right off the bat.  

Let's take a look at the crew:

N'Garen (Klingon/I.K.S. Koraga Expansion)
Action: When attacking this round, you may convert 1 of your [Battle Station] results into a [Critical] and all of your other [Battle Station] results into [Hit] results.
Cost: 4

Remember Drex? This is Drex. Drex, while great on paper, is again pretty swingy. I generally don't like effects that require an action, but vary in utility or are good/bad dependent upon dice rolls- See: a reason why I really like Engage. That being said, you kind of are dependent every time you take Battlestations as an action (or pretty much any other action) so this criticism doesn't have a lot of legs. The fact that Drex doesn't apply to your defense rolls makes Drex very limited. Klingons would kill for Battlestations as an action not because they affect the attack roll, but because they affect the defence roll. Klingons don't need a whole lot of help in the attack department. If you don't land your first salvo, you have two other ships of pretty much the same strength waiting to lay waste to your opponent. You generally destroy or cripple a ship/turn if you're able to focus fire. What I desperately want as a Klingon Commander is a way to make my ships NOT DIE. It's why I don't usually consider Drex- I can Target Lock and get (kind of) the same effect. Sure, you could Target lock and then use Drex's ability to land a whole boatload of hits/crits on your opponent, and that's a decent enough strategy, but it takes a lot of resources and turns to get going. Meh.

Moving on,

Alexander (Klingon/I.K.S. Koraga Expansion)
Each time your ship is hit for at least 1 damage, place 1 [Battle Station] token on this card. During an Activation Phase, you may take 1 [Battle Station] token off this card and place it beside your ship.
Cost: 3

Worf's son and the reason why so many episodes of TNG are pretty bad, Worf's son brings his Federation sensibilities to the Klingon Bridge and says "Hey guys, we should probably get to our battlestations", but only after you take a damage- He should have spoken up sooner. Take a look at Alexander though- he doesn't take up an action. A few people don't like this card, but I think it's great. Your Klingon ships will usually not die in one salvo- Cloak makes sure that you'll stay alive for at least a short period of time. Alexander makes sure that next turn, you're well protected. This is a great crew card, and an example of the kind of crew card that I'd rather have on my ship- passive ability, big effect, no drawback. Great stuff. 

If he's not seeing a lot of play now, I bet he will soon.


  1. The best way to keep Klingon ships alive is to crossfaction Interphase Generators into your tech slots. The recent FAQ change to them that makes it a guaranteed 1 damage (rather than a probable zero) is actually better for Alexander, since they now guarantee him at least one use of his text. Outside of that, I rarely see him working well - people tend to avoid shooting his ride at all unless they think they can kill it outright, which is pretty doable even if you put him on a Negh'var. He looks great on paper and he's stronger toward the endgame if the fight devolves to a one versus one situation (at which point they have to shoot at him) but most of the time he only triggers once or twice per game, tops.

    I think you're underestimating the utility of the Drex/N'Garen cards. Klingons should be trying to maximize their hits to kill enemy ships as fast as possible and reduce the incoming fire they're facing. Converting battlestations to hits is one of the best ways to do that, and getting a nearly-guaranteed crit out of the deal is even better. The Drex clones are a little hard to use repeatedly without support investments (eg Advanced Weapon Systems) but having two of them is actually quite nice for some builds. You can run both of them every turn in a fleet with Martok-8 parked on a Klingon flagship while still maintaining cloak, and that's a pretty strong pair of volleys, especially when the flagship bonuses are considered as well.

  2. I don't think I'm underestimating the utility of Drex. I get how great Drex is on the attack, but like I said- you need a lot of resources to get both of these working- Flagship upgrade, Martok, plus two 4 point crew upgrades.

    I take your point about Alexander- he looks good on paper, but probably works most as a deterrent. Put him on your big bad ship and watch people agonize about whether to shoot it, or at a smaller ship.