Bug: more satellites allowed than required
In the game jobefunhouse017, I play as the Xenos with my Planetary Institute already built, without having the tech tile that makes big buildings worth 4 power points. The game allows me to make the following federation with 7 satellites (indeed, this is the only suggested location for a federation):
However, when choosing a custom location, I can make this federation with only 6 satellites:
If I understand the rules correctly (as posted on https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/2120375/official-federation-faq, to which you also link when creating a new GP game), I should only be allowed to create the second federation with 6 satellites. From that thread:
Q: The path with the fewest satellites to link my chosen planets will touch a planet that I did not wish to include in my federation, can I choose the shortest path that skips this planet?
A: No, If the "extra" planet cluster is not already a part of a federation, then you must choose the path with the fewest satellites to link your planets, even if it includes extra planets, this is typically where the third rule can come into play making that federation invalid.
Q: While choosing the path with the fewest satellites to link my chosen planets, I notice that I can use fewer satellites by using a planet cluster I did not choose to be a part of my federation as a "hop" to cut out 1 or more satellites, Must I use this path?
A: Yes. The path with the fewest satellites MUST be used even if it is achieved by using a planet cluster as a hop to avoid using more satellites.
Note that in both cases, I didn't end my turn, as I don't want any of those federations at this point, so maybe another check will stop the first federation. However, a check is performed after choosing a fed tile, and that check allows both federations, but not an unnecessarily big one with e.g. 9 satallites.
i noticed that in that post rule 3 says that you have to reform your federation if it would be valid with one less planet cluster AND one less satellite, in this case only one of the two applies so i guess both federations are equally valid?
No, I'm arguing that my federation in the first screenshot violates rule 2: using the least amount of satellites possible. If you look at the two Q&A's I quoted, I have to include the mine as a "hop" in order to use 6 satellites instead of 7
Another reason to be able to opt out of satellites.
Not at all, this is just a bug that can be fixed. I've actually come to like satellites as an end goal, as it forces you to play very differently from normal. :)
@Ewan I want to thank you for this report.
This exposed a flaw and fixing it actually makes the new algorithm a lot smoother.
It should be good now! Don't hesitate to report any problems with the new algorithm.
@Robert-Shepherd If you play with friends you can now vote to cancel if you don't like the options
Thanks for the quick fix. However, the bug seems to be only partially fixed now. In the same situation, when I try to make a federation, the federation of the first screenshot is still the only suggested federation (wrong). However, when I try that out and take a fed tile, I get an error stating I can make that federation with less satellites (which is correct). I can make the federation of the second screenshot only by manually placing the satellites, but I can successfully choose a fed tile (also correct).
So the check when submitting a federation seems to be correct, but the suggested federations are still wrong.
@Ewan I think it's because of the cache, if you make a building or something it'll be fixed.