The I.R.W. Praetus Expansion Pack is the first deviation from
the way in which ships are represented in an expansion pack. Usually we will see
the unique ship have a higher shield value and a SP cost of two more points than
its non-unique version. However, the I.R.W. Praetus has the exact
same combat values and SP point cost as the regular Romulan Bird-Of-Prey as
neither ship has any shields. What the I.R.W. Praetus does bring
to the table over the non-unique version is the Cloak and Sensor Echo actions
thanks to its special ability to cloak even without any active shields. This
ability does come with a drawback as a player could inadvertently cause a point
of damage to their hull on an unlucky roll.
The I.R.W. Praetus also provides some interesting new options
to the game. The unique captain Valdore will get great use out of the
nimble movement dial of the ship as his ability to add one attack die to an
attack only comes into effect if he is outside of his targetâ€™s forward firing
arc. This ability will team well with the Nuclear Missiles weapon upgrade
which is also present in the set: having the option to reroll one blank result
while adding an attack die from Valdore to increase the attack to four
will make this 2 SP upgrade worth much more than its slight cost.
Two Tech upgrades are also included in the I.R.W. Praetus
expansion that will work well on many different Romulan ships. The Polarized
Hull Plating allows the player to convert 1 Critical Hit into a normal Hit
which will benefit many of the Romulan ships that just love to deactivate their
shields to enter cloak mode. The other Tech upgrade comes in the form of
Cloaked Mines . This upgrade allows the I.R.W. Praetus to
place a Minefield Token (found in the Star Trek: Attack Wing starter set)
anywhere within Range 2 during the Planning Phase as long as it is not within
Range 2 of an opponentâ€™s ship. Once an enemy passes within range 1 of the token,
they are going to hope that none of the three attack dice come up as hits or
critical hits as they do not get to roll defensive dice to avoid the damage.
Luckily, ships which perform a Scan action can react to the threat and decrease
the dice roll to only 2 attack dice. Itâ€™s also nice to note that the Cloaked
Mines are used as the initiating factor for the Emergency Repairs
mission that comes in the expansion.