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What are some good general tactics and strategy for the Bio-terrorist to use?

Specific questions:

Where should I start?

I started close to one of the cards I was dealt. I thought this would be useful as I'd be able to use the card to fly anywhere on the board. In the end I locally infected the city on the card 3 times and then used the card to remotely infect it and cause an outbreak.

Should I Avoid Drawing and Discarding Cards?

Does it help the players when I discard cards? I figure a large discard pile lessens the impact of an epidemic so if I can avoid discarding cards then I should.

Should I Worry About Being Captured?

Seems like being captured isn't much of a problem, as it's easy to escape. I'd lose all my cards, but if I don't keep many in my hand then that's OK.

How Do The Other Roles Affect Tactics?

I destroyed a research station early on, however one of the players was the Operation Expert and he immediately built another one. So it probably wasn't worth doing. Are there any other similar examples?

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When you say you locally infected 3 times, was that on three different turns? That action should only be able to be performed once per turn. It would be surprising to broadcast your location like that and not have someone try to capture you. –  bwarner Jan 8 at 21:47
It was three different turns. The players ignored me at the start as they were initially focussed on removing cubes from the cities that started with 3. –  Tom77 Jan 8 at 22:01
Now they'll know not to make that mistake again. =) –  bwarner Jan 9 at 1:41

2 Answers 2

Maybe this is obvious, but remember not to stare at your location on the board. The other players will notice it more easily than you think, and they will have an easier time locating you.

I often find myself weighing two options:

  • A strategy which will cause maximum damage to the players
  • A strategy which will be the biggest nuisance for the players to clean up

I tend to lean towards being a nuisance. Even though your moves might be a little less splashy, they can force the other players to make inefficient plays. Sometimes the juicy looking play doesn't turn out very well, because its in an area of the map that the other players were already planning to focus on.

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The way I think of it is similar to dbyrne's (maximum damage/biggest nuisance). What you want to do is force the other players to spend as many actions as possible to deal with each one of your actions, where "force" means doing something that, if not dealt with, will put the other players in danger of either having too many outbreaks or running out of cubes (or make them feel like they're in danger).

For example, you might want to locally infect places that either take a lot of travel time for the players to reach, or which are likely to coincide with other infections and cause extra damage. You might also try to do nasty things at key times; it's a lot tougher if a player has a hand full of cards and are about to cure, and are suddenly the only one close enough to deal with a big mess. Remember, the game itself is trying to make you win too, so you just have to help push it over the edge. Even without the bio-terrorist, the players are often not that many actions away from losing. You just have to make them spend those actions elsewhere (or cause them to lose a little sooner).

Starting near one of your cards

Often good. But if the opening board state is such that you think you want to be elsewhere, go for it. Maybe you can manage to cause an extra outbreak near the beginning of the game!

Drawing and discarding cards

You'll certainly want to draw sometimes, and some discarding is probably fine. But it depends strongly on the situation. If you're having trouble getting to places to cause trouble, you probably want to draw. If not, you probably want to wait to draw until it's been a while since an epidemic and you can draw without removing cities that you'd love for the game to infect for you. Discarding cards can dilute the pile a bit, but if it allows you to do some real damage, it's well worth it. And if you discard a card that you actually want the game to infect for you, that's great!

Being captured

Eh. It's certainly bad if you've got a hand full of cards and grand plans for them, or if you let yourself get captured without much work from the players. But if you can taunt them into spending a couple turns chasing you instead of cleaning up the board, it's probably worth it even if you get captured in the end. In general, especially since you often don't have a ton of cards anyway, getting captured isn't that bad.

Interactions with roles

The Operations Expert is probably the most obvious one. The other main one is probably the Medic; if you're trying to cause outbreaks, you should obviously avoid spending too much time on one the Medic can just clean up in one action. The Containment Specialist can do the same thing, to a lesser degree. In some cases, the Dispatcher could also muck up your plans by providing some more efficient travel, but it should be pretty easy to plan around that.

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