Crossposted from the SFU blog on BGG.

The Romulan economy continues to pick up steam with the last bit of on board survey, and some Federation provinces. However, the Klingon economy shrank by ~27 EP, to put the total Coaltion economy down by 21 EP.

The Klingons also canceled the bulk of their schedule in preference to maximizing repairs, and got about a third of the way through the cripple pile sitting on the capital. This technically is a problem for ship count, but many those cripples have been useless for turns now, and it means he returned a lot of heavier ships to active service (capital repairs were 2xD7C, 3xD7, 4xD6, D6M, 4xD5, 2xF5E). In addition, the Lyrans and Romulans had large repair bills, with the total Coalition repair spending hitting 78.5 EP.

Also, B10-1 Invincible rolled a ‘1’ this turn, putting it one point short of completion….

Naturally, the Hydran capital got a lot of attention, with most of the forces in the area going into the hex, and smaller forces into the surrounding space, trying to trap the Hydran fleet.

A substantial Klingon force moved onto the planet in 2715, and I send a couple ships from the 7th Fleet to reinforce the defenses, but then just about every Romulan ship in the area piled onto the SB. The 3rd Legion spread a number of small ships from 3415 over the region to interfere with sending reserves before the balance of the fleet joined in.

There was a fair amount of move-and-countermove along the Federation-Klingon border as Bel moved to kick me off various planets in Klingon space. In the north, moves were mostly confined to pulling more forces out from being cut off by Kzinti fleets. However, the Lyrans moved their Kzinti-front forces to re-take 1105.

Two of my reserves went to their obvious posts of reinforcing the Romulan-border SBs, but otherwise I largely avoided the big fights in order to provide a decisive advantage in certain small fights.

Near Kzinti space.

Move and counter-move.

The Romulans put more pressure on the border.

Piling into the Hydran capital.

0617: Uncontested retreat
0518: Klingon: dest F5, F5S, crip F5; Lyran: dest FF
1105: Kzinti: dest CM; Lyran: dest DWE, capture planet
1003: Lyran: dest CWE, DWE
1007: Lyran: dest DW
1307: Klingon: crip D6V, AD5
1004: Lyran: crip FF
1210: SSC: Kzinti: dest FF; Klingon: capture planet
1209: unopposed withdrawal
2715: Klingon: dest D6M, D5V, AD5, F5E; Federation: dest CL, 2xFF, crip CL, 2xFF
2815: SSC: Federation: dest FF
2915: Federation: dest CL, 4xFF, crip CC, CA, TG, 2xNCL, 2xCL, DE, 6xFF; Romulan: dest KR, 2xSP, SPB, SPF, 3xSKE, 2xSNB, crip 2xFH, 3xSP, WE, BH, 2xWH, 2xBHE
3213: SSC: Romulan: dest SN
3114: SSC: both sides retreat
3014: SSC: Federation retreat; capture SN
3410: SSC: Federation: crip CL, retreat; Romulan: dest WE
3412: Federation: crip NCL
3611: Romulan: dest KRM, 2xKE, FAL, 5xSP, crip FH, FAL, SP; Federation: 3xSIDS, dest NCL, DE, FFE, crip DN+, NCL
3711: Federation: dest CA; Romulan: dest 2xSP, crip KRM, SP
3812: Federation: dest BATS; Romulan: crip SK
2414: Retreat after refused approach
2416: SSC: Federation: dest FF, crip DD, retreat
2216: SSC: Federation: dest FF; Klingon: crip D5, capture planet
1916: Klingon: dest F5
2214: Federation: dest DD, FF, planet captured
1812: SSC: Klingon: crip D5, retreat
2014: SSC: both sides retreat
1913: Federation: crip NCL; Klingon: dest F5E
1911: SSC: Klingon: dest FV
1713: unopposed withdrawal
1611: Federation: dest NCL, planet captured
1712: Federation: crip CC, FF; Klingon: dest D7, F5E, crip FV, F5S

0617 didn’t go anything like Bel had planned. To be honest, it didn’t work the way I thought it would either. A careful reading of the capital assault rules showed that with zero defenses in place, I could basically retreat out before combat. It seems odd, but it also seems pretty clear. Bel had abandoned the major planet in 0718 to force the Hydrans out of position, but there were two major problems with that idea. One, while it immediately reverts to my control, the planet doesn’t become a supply source until the next turn. Two, he only had a single line of pickets between the capital and the Old Colonies, so as soon as I retreated onto it, I was in supply.

Planet 2715 was a fight I was determined to win, but had doubts about. I accepted approach to kill the one mauler present so that Bel would have a hard time just killing the PDUs to make it easier to take next turn. Once over the planet, my ComPot was substantially higher, and Bel retreated out, self-killing ships to avoid pursuit. I don’t know why he killed his carrier….

Bel had a nice large fleet at the 7th Fleet SB in 2915, but it was thin on larger ships, meaning I mostly had to outlast the initial heavy line. This was aided by me rolling an average of two over Bel, and he retreated out after I killed a SKE to force the SUB group off the line, and then I got his SPB group in pursuit.

I could easily outlast the Romulans in 3611 against the 6th Fleet SB, except he brought three maulers and started directing SIDS. I killed two and then the third one shocked and he retreated out leaving the SB at 4xSIDS.

The obvious choice for the 2nd Federation Reserve was to send it to the NZ planet in 2214 and make a fight for it. However, I didn’t think the odds were good with the reserve, so I sent it into Klingon territory and planet 1916, where a Klingon squadron was picking on the garrison FF, and now I have a battle line central to several points of internal infrastructure.

My CVAs in Klingon space ended up in adjacent battles. Bel let me withdraw out of the first one in 1713 (I was tempted to stay and bleed him, but I want the forward carrier group in good shape for my turn), and probably should have retreated onto the other battle. Instead, I retreated into a position that would get cut off if I didn’t hold 1712. I had lots of fighter reserves (18 fighters on carrier tugs), but Bel had full carrier groups to shuffle through, and I retreated on the second round after we exchanged high-low rolls. (Thankfully, his retrogrades opened up supply.)

Overall, I’m happy with the continued chaos inside the Klingon Empire, but while I’m holding off the Romulans (I really did not think I’d manage to hold on to 2715, 2915, 3611 and 3711), they are starting to drive deeper into Federation territory.