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Video Game / Battlestar Galactica Deadlock

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Battlestar Galactica Deadlock is a Turn-Based Strategy game based on Battlestar Galactica (2003) developed by Black Lab Games and published by Slitherine. Set during the First Cylon War, it pits the player against the Cylon forces and tasks the player with defending the Twelve Colonies.

This game provides examples of:

  • 2-D Space: Downplayed. You can adjust the "elevation" of your ships but you can't tilt them.
  • Actually Ten Mooks: Fighter squadrons consist of about eight to twelve individual ships, which next to the capital ships are nearly invisible, so each squadron is represented by an icon of a single fighter. Probably even actually a hundred mooks, considering in the the TV-series the Galactica even when severly under-manned and with only one flightpod had multitudes of the fighters it has in Deadlock, it is obvious each 'in-game' squadron actually represents a much bigger formation.
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  • Anachronism Stew: Averted with the "Modern Ships Pack" in that you can't build Mercury-class Battlestars or Mark VII Vipers during the First Cylon War. Those are only usable in the skirmish mode.
  • Anti-Air: The Cylon "Cerastes" type ship is a small destroyer designed specifically to combat enemy fighter squadrons with More Dakka.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: If one or more of your ships are on a collision course, their projections will be marked in red to warn you.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: You may be fighting a war for humanity's very survival, but there is no possible way you can bring more than seven ships into a battle. And yes, the Daidalos Shipyard counts towards that limit.
    • The Endurance Update eases this up a little, adding a "support slot" allowing an eighth ship (or the Daidalos).
  • Artificial Stupidity: The AI likes to suicide its Raiders and missiles straight into a Battlestar's flak field regardless whether there are other, undefended targets it could attack. It also fails to understand the importance of flanking when attacking with munition-centred fleets (a lone Battlestar can defend only one of its sides with flak). This results in the only real threat to an experienced player being Revenant and Cerastes gunships. However due to the below even those are misused. The end result is that a veteran player can take down the nearly twice as big Cylon fleets of Fleet Admiral difficulty down with barely any losses.
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  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: The AI's primary strategy consist out of simply charging at you, without bothering with such things as formations, allowing the player to defeat larger fleets in detail with little damage.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Nukes. Whereas equipping guided missiles or unguided torpedoes will provide you with several multi-shot volleys, equipping a nuke gives you only one shot, and that shot is a slow-moving projectile that's easily dodged or intercepted.
  • The Battlestar: In addition to the Jupiter-class (the same type as the Galactica), there is also the smaller Artemis-class battlestar, the heavily armed Minerva-class battlestar, and the Adamant-class frigate, which fulfills this trope in spirit. Averted with most other ship types, which can either launch fighters or fire missiles/torpedoes, but not both.
    • On the Cylon side, the closest analog is the Arachne cruiser, and the game even describes it as such. DLC also adds the Phobos tech cruiser, which can not only launch missiles and fighters, but also hack enemy ships. A case could be made for the Cylon Basestar, although it is such a glacier the argument could be made that it's a mobile space station instead of this trope.
  • Break Out the Museum Piece: The Janus-class heavy cruiser, which dates back a few centuries to the Imperial Wars between Virgon and Leonis.
    • The Taipan fighter is an even older example of this trope. The design is drawn from ancient Kobol, meaning it's at least two thousand years old.
  • Boarding Party: Raptors and Heavy Raiders can do this.
  • Cap: Two of them are imposed on the player's individual fleets: Each ship type has a set number of points, and a basic fleet cannot exceed 4000 points' worth of ships. However this can be increased by assigning Officers and leveling them up. (In skirmish mode the cap is either 4000 or 8000 points). The second cap is that the player may not have more than seven ships in a fleet, not counting fighter squadrons. This rule is immutable.
  • Civil Warcraft: At least one mission sees you fighting against the "Sagittaron Democratic Union", fellow Colonials who are not big fans of the Fleet, led by one Markus Thoon.
  • Critical Existence Failure: Downplayed. Ships have armor hitpoints on each of their six sides, and once an armor health drops to zero any additional hits on that side will reduce the ship's hull health, meaning a ship can last longer by presenting different sides to the enemy at different times. A ship is destroyed at 0 hull points.
  • Continuity Nod: Lots to the 2003 series, naturally:
    • All There in the Manual reveals that the Daidalos Shipyard was eventually relegated to from a shipyard role to a resupply role; it and Ragnar Anchorage are one and the same.
    • The Minerva-class Light Battlestar is the predecessor to the Mercury-class battlestar, incorporating a similar dual-stacked flight pod design, and homages the Original Series battlestar as well from the rear.
    • It's not clear what the relationship, if any, is between Helena Agathon and Karl "Helo" Agathon, however, a conversation in the "Sin and Sacrifice" DLC confirms Rear Admiral Lucinda Cain is the grandmother of future Admiral Helena Cain.
    • Doctor Sherman Cottle makes an appearance in one mission of the base campaign. The "Broken Alliance" DLC gives him a bigger role.
    • The Avalon space colony bears a striking resemblance to the Resurrection Hub.
    • The first DLC pack includes the "Berzerk"-class assault carrier, glimpsed briefly alongside the Pegasus at the Scorpia Shipyards in Razor.
    • The second DLC pack includes the Celestra-class resupply ship, at least one of which was in the fugitive fleet in the show proper. Also introduced are the Cylon Hydra-class resupply ship, which looks like a precursor to the Resurrection Ship, and the Argos Basestar, which has the same 'inverted-y' shape as the Basestars in the TV series and shares the same design philosophy of 'no guns, but enough Raiders and missiles to blot out the sun'.
    • The "Ghost Fleet Offensive" expansion, as indicated by the title, overlaps with Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, and as such references the film numerous times.
    • Finally, the "Armistice" campaign expansion overlaps with the flashbacks seen in Razor. In both this and the previous expansion, a young Bill "Husker" Adama is mentioned in passing but never seen.
  • Continuity Snarl: A massive one - or so it seems - with Galactica (and in fact all of the Jupiter-class battlestars depicted). Jupiter-classes are depicted with a completely, radically different appearance to their TV series and Cylon War era flashback iterations. Here Jupiter-class battlestars sport three connecting arms at near 90 degree angles that link the flight pods to the hull (rather than two) a different, sharper alligator head design, smaller flight pods, only four active engines (versus the six that it should normally run, four in pods and two in the middle), different bow hull markings and a more streamlined hull overall. Cylon War-era Jupiters were depicted with additional gun emplacements and armor plating, but otherwise resembled Galactica's appearance in the TV show. Galactica is also explicitly stated to have disappeared shortly after deployment, which contradicts its service early in the war.
    • Resolved with the Resurrection DLC, which reveals Galactica (and all of her sister ships that survived the war) are actually Mark II Jupiters. Following an extensive redesign and refit in secret, the new design brings it in line with how Galactica looks in the TV series, with two flight pod arms and a beefier hull.
  • Easily Forgiven: Discussed at the end of the "Broken Alliance" missions. Despite it being obvious that she was supplying the SDU insurgents with ships, Minister Wenutu is invited back as an ally of Colonial fleet after helping deal with Cylon collaborators in the Canceron government. Cottle isn't having it and pulls a Screw This, I'm Outta Here
  • Faction Calculus: Colonials are the Powerhouse faction, with their reliance on Battlestar-type warships and smaller squadrons of higher-quality Vipers. Cylons are the Subversive faction, with larger squadrons of weaker Raiders, more specialized ships, and most importantly, the ability to hack enemy warships.
  • False Flag Operation:In a Broken Alliance mission Prince Stefan blows up a Virgonian Research Station with a nuke and blames it on the Cylons, all so the Quorum will give the Colonial Navy authorization to use nukes.
  • Final Boss: In the final mission of the Resurrection Campaign you encounter your (usually) first Cratus Basestar, commanded by Lachesis, the closest thing the game has to a Big Bad. Poorly enough it jumps away when it reaches 40hp.
    • Lachesis returns with his Cratus at the end of "Ghost Fleet Offensive." You get to kill him properly this time.
  • Fragile Speedster: Manticore and Nemesis corvettes for the Colonials and Cylons respectively. The fastest available ships but also the smallest and least armored.
  • Glass Cannon: The Colonial Ranger-class missile cruiser can launch two ordinance salvos at once and only needs one turn to reload, but won't last long if the enemy focuses on them.
    • The Minerva Battlestar also counts having more guns and missiles than an Artemis Battlestar but less armour.
    • Also don't forgot the Revenant gunships of the Cylons, their armour is not impressive but four of them can wipe out a Jupiter Battlestar in one turn.
  • I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: Careful that you don't activate the flak guns on your battlestars while launching fighters...
  • Mighty Glacier: As a general rule, the larger the ship the slower it is. Most pronounced with the Cylon Basestar, carries the most armament and fighters but can barely move half its own length in a single turn.
  • Misguided Missile: Be wary with firing missiles if you spot wardriver drones, their jamming mode has the ability to redirect your missiles back to sender. Not the mention the Cylon 'Comet PCM' which can hack your missiles to follow it, possibly even into one of your own ships.
  • The Mole: Sinon Quade. He apparently had designed ships for Clothos.
  • Mythology Gag: This game continues its parent series's trend of using designs from the original series for the First Cylon War.
    • The Artemis-class Battlestar bears a striking resemblance to the original-series Galactica design.
    • The Minerva-class Battlestar's rear is strikingly similar to the original-series battlestar's engine pods.
    • The female humanoid cylon model seen at the end of Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome reappears in this game, and is identified as an IL-series model.
  • No Campaign for the Wicked: Played straight. You can only play as the Cylons in Skirmish or multiplayer mode.
  • Ramming Always Works: Even if it doesn't destroy both ships involved outright, this maneuver will at least inflict heavy damage.
    • It used to be possible to FTL-ram as the Cylons in multiplayer, however that was removed for balance reasons.
  • Real-Time with Pause: Of the "Simultaneous Turn Resolution" variety.
  • Religious and Mythological Theme Naming: Most of the ship class names reference Classical mythology. Par for the course with this franchise. The randomly selected names for individual ships come from a much broader variety of sources.
    • The three IL-series Cylons (Clothos, Lachesis, and Atropos) are named after the Fates.
  • Robot War: Again: duh.
  • Shoot the Bullet: Missiles can be intercepted by fighters, and the Colonial Sweeper deploys chaff specifically for this purpose.
  • The Starscream: Clothos: in the Ghost Fleet Offensive he cuts Lachesis of from reinforcements allowing you to destroy him, in the following campaign, Armistice, he overthrows and kills Atropos in a coup.
  • Subsystem Damage: If one of a ship's sides loses all its armour further hits on it will not just damage the hull but also a subsytem. Subsystems can also directly be damaged by EMP mines and Cylon hacking.
  • Taking You with Me: The most likely outcome of any ramming maneuver, though not a guarantee.
  • A Taste of Power: You are given command of the Jupiter-class Battlestar Athena for one early campaign mission before delivering it to Picon. You won't be able to build that type of ship yourself until much later.
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: When rogue planet Marathon appears on the edge of the war room map, it's apparent the base game's campaign is approaching a conclusion.
  • Villain Teleportation: The Cylon Phobos Cruiser and both the Argos and Cratus Basestars can do 'tactical micro-jumps', though the last two not very far. Also the Modern Basestar which does not appear in the campaign.
  • You Lose at Zero Trust: Downplayed. Much like XCOM: Enemy Unknown, colonies will pull their support for the Fleet if not properly defended from Cylon attacks. Unlike in XCOM, you can actually win them back. The game won't end if you lose too many colonies, but you will be forced to put the campaign missions on hold until you can get them back.