Crossposted from the SFU blog on BGG.

Economically, turn 13 was fairly good. The Kzintis earned 94 EP, greater than their base economy of 93. This is kind of inevitable, as the slow expansion off off-map territories drives up income, but is also a sign that the Kzinti territory is in good shape, with all but one of their planets back in their possession, all but one of those producing income again, and all but one of those producing at the full undevastated rate. This allowed them to repair everything, produce a full schedule, convert a CVL up to a CV (while producing the standard one CV per turn), convert the remaining captured D5 to Kzinti service, install a third PDU on 1502, and produce a PDU that is being set up on 1504.

Meanwhile, while the Federation economy is not unhealthy (211.4 income), they could only afford around half of the waiting repairs, and despite telling myself that I needed to maximize carrier production, only produced one CVS; instead opting to produce the second CVA pod, which immediately went to the TG with the 6th Fleet.

While I wanted to hit some major targets near the rim of the galaxy, including the Klingon Tholian Border SB, there were too many ships in the region (including way too many Romulans still near the 7th Fleet SB) to be able to do much. Elsewhere, my main target was the Klingon Fleet, which had a number of poorly-supported elements scattered around their northern area. This was complicated by the fact that the Lyrans are still capable of reaching the Kzinti capital, so large chunks of the Kzinti fleet need to be able to retrograde back to cover that.

While I’d like to push the Lyrans out of Kzinti space proper, the Klingons are still taking up too much attention, so a decent fleet was sent to 1001 with the idea of trading some fighters for some cripples, and wear the Lyran garrison down over the course of a couple turns.

Bel had, to my surprise, left me an opening in Hydran space by not retrograding his forces from last turn’s battle back to their base at 0416. I was able to pin the force in 0119 with the bulk of the forces still in the Old Colonies (I was worried that Battle Group Blood in 0117 would react and spoil the show, but they didn’t), and then the 2nd Fleet swung around the other Klingon/Lyran forces to attack the captured Hydran capital! This is ordinarily important as the hex is providing 9 EPs to the Coalition, but Bel had just started setting up three different MBs in the hex, so he was planning on making it much harder to take in the near future.

Kzinti offensives.

Operation “Clean Sweep”.

Operation “Limited Target”.

Home again…

3516: Romulan: BATS destroyed
3415: Romulan: dest SPH, crip SP, WE, FAL, K5L, SNB; Federation: dest 2xCC
3313: Cloaked evasion
3412: Cloaked evasion
2815: Romulan: dest WE; Federation: dest FF
2516: Klingon: dest E4; Federation: crip DD
2315: Klingon: crip E4A; Federation: crip FF
2216: Klingon: dest 2xPDU; planet captured
2014: SSC: Klingon retreat
1916: Klingon: dest 2xPDU; planet captured
1812: SSC: Federation: crip FF, retreat
1611: SSC: Klingon: dest PDU; Federation: crip CL, capture planet
1810: SSC: Klingon: retreat
1612: Klingon: crip D7C; Federation: dest CA
1909: Klingon: dest crippled D5
1709: Klingon: dest D5, crip 2xD5, 2xF5L; Kzinti: dest Z-D5, crip BC, CM, EFF
1605: Klingon: crip F5E
1305: Klingon: dest E4, crippled E4
1408: Klingon: dest D6D; Kzinti: crip FF
1210: Klingon: dest 2xPDU, planet captured
1209: Klingon: dest BATS
1009: Klingon: dest BATS
1001: Unopposed withdrawal
0801: SSC: Lyran: crip SC, retreat
0803: Lyran: dest 2xFF; Kzinti: crip 2xCM, FF
0519: SSC: Lyran: crip 2xFF; Hydran: crip CU, retreat
0119: Unopposed withdrawal
0617: Lyran: dest 2xDW; Klingon: dest E4; capital captured

I was a little surprised that the Romulans didn’t send a reserve to both major battles on their border, and was even more surprised that Bel was initially prepared to retreat out of the fight that he sent the reserves to (I did still have a larger force), and he was surprised when I retreated out. But the mission was to kill the MB being set up in 3415 and the adjacent BATS, and get back to the 6th Fleet SB. Bel obviously tried to block the way home, but thanks to retreating out of both hexes, I could just manage a retrograde path back. On the other hand, he killed two CCs, and that is going to hurt.

There were a few SSC fights on the Klingon border, and I didn’t roll well on any of them. Both sides have a negative modifier in 2014, so that wasn’t so surprising, but I had to go two rounds against a single PDU in 1611, and I couldn’t do more than kill the fighters of a lone FV in 1810 with a +3 roll.

I was surprised that Bel sent both Klingon reserves after BG Napoleon instead of rescuing the major planet in 1611, or interfering in other fights. Having been out of supply, it was low on fighters, but was still a powerful fleet, once back in supply for combat. Unable to get the damage to cripple a carrier, he mauled a CA in formation….

…And then he mauled the D5 in Kzinti service in the next battle. It’s disappointing to see it go, but it’s already been in several battles, and crippled more than once, so I got good service from it. In return, I managed to kill a D5 during a pursuit battle.

I was surprised that the Lyrans were willing to let 1001 go without a fight. He’s still in range of the Kzinti capital, but now there’s no supply there, and no place to retrograde to if he raids it, so there’s significantly less danger to it than before.

The Lyran reserve went to 0803 instead of the planet, so he had a good line versus a half line that was picking on some province garrisons. With some extra reserves, I’m not sure why he self-killed frigates, since the Lyran economy is in great shape.

If I’d been thinking, I’d have left a ship in 0319 so I’d be able to string supply through 0519 to the capital, no matter how temporarily. As it is, the fleet is in a partial grid, and not replacing fighters.

I was hoping to do a bit more damage to the Klingon fleet this turn, but it really is hard to force someone into a fight he doesn’t want, and I wasn’t really expecting to take out another four planets this turn.

Turn 13 scoring:
Coalition: 390.8 EP (x2) + 570 (bases) + 570 ships (/5) = 1471.4
Alliance: 333.4 EP (x2) + 480 (bases) + 547 ships (/5) = 1256.2

Difference = 215.2 Major Coalition Victory

Eliminating the 100-point bonus for the Hydran Capital still doesn’t shift this down from a major victory (barely), partially because of the addition of further Romulan bases as they survey and activate their backfield (I may have forgotten to account for some of that last turn). The Coalition also gained 35 ships this turn, mostly with the Romulans. Meanwhile, the Alliance gained 46 ships, even with the Coalition mauling away cruisers.