The first pair of battles between the Lyrans and Kzintis occurred on the third strategic turn. Both sides were very cautious, not being sure of what to expect from the other, and each hoped to gain a feeling for the tactics and weakness of the other.
In those first two battles, the kzinti fleet moved at or near the maximum speed of the fighters, launching volleys of drones at the Lyrans from both ships and fighters. The Lyrans confounded the Kzinis and their drones by maintaining speeds equal to or above that of the drones, while trying to find a Kzinti weakness to exploit.
The result of both battles were similar long range standoffs, with fleets of 12-20 ships (the Lyrans were slightly outsized and outnumbered) sparring with long distance disruptor and phaser fire. Each side lost 1-2 light vessels in the Police corvette to Destroyer classes.
Given the size of the fleets involved, the battles were very anti-climactic, neither lasting more than two turns, and nothing really being achieved.
Strategic Turn 4
The Kzintis advance through Lyran space continued, while the Lyrans consolidated forces and better matched the enemy's numbers. Despite attempts at adjust tactics, neither side could find a an advantage with the next pair of battles ending in much the same way as the first pair.
The third battle saw the Kzinti fleet sandwiched between two smaller Lyran fleets, such that the Lyrans outnumbered the Kzinti 26 ships to 16. The Lyrans largely failed to take advantage of their numbers, destroying only a single light cruiser in addition to the customary mutual exchange of a frigate.
The fourth battle was much as the first two, with both forces again dancing around, unsuccessfully finding a weakness in their opposite, and again losing only a couple of light vessels.
Enter the Klingons:
On the second strategic turn, a Kzinti fleet entered the neutral zone and proceeded over the next couple of turns to advance "down" the Lyran/Klingon neutral zone.
The Klingons found this insult intolerable, and countered the 16 ship strong Kzinti fleet with a smaller fleet of their own, consisting of mostly of F5 and E4 variants with a single D6 acting as the flagship. The Klingons lost three of the smaller ships, while causing only superficial damage to the Kzinti.
Klingon honor was upheld, and a glorious victory was declared. The Klingon fleet regrouped some distance away from the battle, while the Kzinti "fled" into Lyran space. The result of the battle was militarily meaningless, but politically important, as it resulted in the Klingon Empire getting involved in the conflict, somewhat earlier than they might have otherwise.
Strategic Turn 5
The third pair of Kzinti Lyran battles proved only to be more frustrating to the Lyrans than the previous battles. Despite achieving advantages in numbers and/or firepower, the Kzinti disengaged after a single turn in each battle, not allowing the Lyrans to close to combat, and despite losing a Command Cruiser in one of the battles, the Kzinti losses were light, and they continued to further penetrate Lyran space.
Our last game, the Big Cat deploys a seemingly endless
stream of drones against my noble Lyrans. Kzinis in
the center, Lyrans far and near on 1.5" hex Hotz Mats.
The Strategic Situation After 5 Turns
During the first three Strategic Turns, the impatient Kzinti took the initiative, invading Lyran space. This, combined with the fact that the Lyrans did not violate Kzinti space, resulted in the Hydrans being bound to not get involved. The Hydrans were bound by treaty to come to the defense of the Kzinit, but could not aid them when they were the aggressor.
The encounter between the Klingons and Kzinti in the neutral zone relaxed the Hydran restrictions slightly, resulting in the Hydran incursion into the Lyran neutral zone (Hex 0713) during turn 5.
Similarly, the Kzinti Klingon encounter resulted in five Klingon fleets entering the neutral zone along Kzinti space, taking up "defensive" positions, and liberating the neutral planetary system in Hex 1506, also during turn 5.
Lastly, the Kzinti fleet traveling down the 08XX hex line of the neutral zone, also triggered the release of the Klingon Expeditionary Fleet, allowing it to head to Lyran space, entering the NZ in hex 0808. This fleet advanced into Lyran space and up the 07XX hex line.
Thus far the Kzintis have advanced deep into Lyran space, while the Lyrans have failed to inflict much damage on the invaders. The Kzintis have lost 12 ships, while the Lyrans have lost 10, with the only significance of the losses thus far being that the Kzinti have lost a couple of Scouts, reducing their fleet sensor range from two to one strategic hex.