News for January 2012
Multiplicity 11
A preview of Cosmic Alliance, the upcoming expansion for Cosmic Encounter
Cosmic Encounter | Published 09 January 2012

As the Cosmos becomes more crowded and its riches become more scarce, some aliens cling to outdated militant ideologies, some sit back and party, and others adapt to their surroundings. But whether these resourceful races evolve naturally over the course of millions of years, or help the process along with a bit of cybernetic tinkering, they’ll be well prepared for the coming cosmic showdown!

Last month we announced Cosmic Alliance, the latest expansion for Cosmic Encounter. This new addition to the beloved game of galactic politics brings 20 alien races, both original and classic, exploding onto your tabletop. It also features components for another player, rules for large eight-player games, and a new variant – team rules, which allow steadfast allies to dominate the Cosmos together!

In our last preview, we looked at the Team Cosmic variant, and we saw how the charismatic and inspirational General stands ready to lead his troops to victory. Today, we’ll catch a glimpse of two more upcoming aliens: the multi-talented Cyborg and the pint-sized (but multitudinous) Pygmy.

The perfect marriage of biology and technology

The Cyborgs are a no-nonsense race of floating Swiss Army Knives; they always seem to have the right tool for the job. Able to “attach” three extra cards (which cannot be stolen) to their sheet, the Cyborgs let a player constantly adapt his strategy, building the perfect alien with which to dominate the Cosmos.

The Cyborg Alien Sheet. Click to enlarge.

Tiny terrors

Meanwhile, having survived the near destruction of their twin home worlds, the Pygmies (designed by Cosmic Encounter enthusiast Jack Reda) found a way to turn disaster into an advantage. Their home planets may be little more than floating stones, but they have lots of them! Using the home planets of an unused player color, the Pygmies begin the game with double the standard number of planets in play. But this bounty of worlds boasts a handy deterrent: since each pebble-sized Pygmy planet only counts as half a colony to would-be predators, why would anyone bother to attack?

The Pygmy Alien Sheet. Click to enlarge.

With the versatile Cyborgs and the innumerable Pygmies joining the interstellar struggle, the Cosmos will never be the same. Keep checking back for more in the coming weeks, and look for Cosmic Alliance on store shelves later this quarter!

Cosmic Encounter is a classic board game that puts players in charge of the fate of an alien race. Three to five players each strive to be the first to conquer five enemy colonies and establish themselves as the dominant life form in the galaxy. With over 50 alien characters to choose from, no two games are ever the same.

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Comments (11)

Published: 1/12/2012 7:57:17 AM

@Just_a_bill  Thanks for pointing that out..I'm glad I took the time to actually read the card :)  ::bangs head on wall::

Published: 1/10/2012 12:08:48 PM

@logopolys: If your biggest problem is that you always have eight players for Cosmic, then I expend no sympathy on you at all! ;-)

My first thought was that Wild Clone would not allow quasi-infinite artifacts, but instead would cause the artifact to go to your hand for one more use.  But I see that this is ambiguous and players will argue it both ways (some of course will argue it different ways at different times).  Another thing I'll have to fix on Cyborg.

Published: 1/10/2012 11:50:50 AM

 I am largely underwhelmed by Cyborg. Like The Claw before it, it really requires having quality cards to be worth it at all, wi the bonus downside that everyone can see your three cards.

That being said, flares become super-powerful with Cyborg (but I assume that Super Cyborg itself only allows you to swap out cards on your sheet, which would be nice, but would not be a good card to actually take up precious space on your sheet). I can already see some crazy card combos that would work: the first to come to mind is Wild Clone and any artifact (any Zap or Plague would be the most fun), leading to infinite artifact play (baring Card Zaps).

Pygmy looks fun and incredibly asinine, which I dig. However, it automatically fits into the awkward group with Symbiote of aliens that we won't be able to play with with a full group of now eight. Granted, there probably won't be eight players at every game I play, but I'm always aware of the restriction.

Kobold Curry Chef
Published: 1/10/2012 11:11:17 AM

I don't see how Cyborg is a variant of Chosen, any more than it's a variant of Sorcerer or Pavlov. It's its own alien, with its own mix of things that it does. Many aliens have vague resemblances to others, and some have strong ones. Cyborg has a very, very very vague resemblance to Chosen. And Miser. And The Claw. And Cavalry. Etc. etc. etc.  It's going to be very interesting in play, because both main players will be taking Cyborg's face-up cards into account in all their decisions. It'll be another popular ally, which is cool.

Published: 1/10/2012 9:10:50 AM

@Chris, while there is a superficial similarity to Chosen, the power actually plays very differently:

* Chosen can add more than one card together, but does not get to play non-encounter cards drawn for divine intervention.

* Chosen doesn't know what the three cards will be in advance, but also neither do his opponents.

* Chosen cannot affect the encounter as an ally.

To me, those are significant differences.  Some strengths and some liabilities.  I don't see this playing like Chosen at all, and in fact I like it better than Chosen.

In fact, I would say a closer comparison might be mini-Miser with the ability to change your encounter card post-reveal.

@Mastabou, no, you cannot play an encounter card from your sheet during Planning.  Only non-encounter cards are playable from the sheet at any time; encounter cards are limited to the use clause during Reveal.

Published: 1/10/2012 9:06:31 AM

So with the Cyborg, you can play an encounter card from your sheet during planning phase, replace it and then possibly use the replacement if you wish with the actual power?

Published: 1/9/2012 10:36:14 PM

This Cyborg seems to me as nothing more than a Chosen variant. Instead of using Divine Intervention when its your turn after revealing cards, you have it permanently on and ready to be used at any time, even if people can see the cards.

Highly disappointing power.

The Warp
Published: 1/9/2012 7:17:06 PM

They do not replace ships.  If you can't land, your ships return to your other colonies- and if you have none, they must go to the warp. 

Kobold Curry Chef
Published: 1/9/2012 5:44:15 PM

Adam, I assume they would just go back to wherever they came from originally -- the owner's other colonies.

Published: 1/9/2012 5:15:44 PM

Pygmy is a very cool alien.  Thank you The Warp and FFG.

I'm confused by the four-ship limit though.  If there are four ships there, what happens to newly landed ships, do they replace previous ships, or are they refused landing?  And if they are refused landing, are they sent to warp or other colonies??  And if they replace previous ships, who chooses which ship is replaced?  Either way it's very interesting and problematic for the attacker.

The Warp
Published: 1/9/2012 4:24:19 PM

w000t...   I'm loving the art on Pygmy. 

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