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Z-Swarm the new swarm meta?


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#181 ScottieATF

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:31 PM

 

Choose first action that matches criteria, based on list on the main page for the selected ship
NOTE: Target Lock is a free action, choose this plus first other action that is available in the list.

 

That's taken directly from the instructions on the website you linked.  All ships with the TL Action available have it listed as

 

 

Obtain action_targetlock.png on targeted ship as a free action.
Clear Target Lock at end of turn.

 

 

 

Like the actual game, you can only take one action.  So you guys are doing it wrong.

 

Are we?

 

 

(See app's instructions on page.)

 

You might want to go take your own look first.


Edited by ScottieATF, 18 July 2014 - 11:34 PM.


#182 jpltanis

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 11:46 PM

I didn't use it the way you had described in my experiment.  I tried to play it as close to a human person and with the actual game rules as much as possible.  It was primarily to have it choose the movements.  I want it to emulate a person as much as I could.    



#183 Icareane

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 02:56 PM

Just tried the 8 Ties versus 8 Z match friday night (human players at both ends) and I no longer thinks that the Z have a big advantage over Ties.

I found that the Ties have a much larger firepower advantage than I thought over Zs.

 

This is confirmed by my mathwing calculus:

Discounting crits, the only range at which Ties have less than a 4/3 firepower advantage is at range 2 if the defender is wiithout focus and even then it's still close to a 4/3 advantage. If the defender has a focus, then the Ties have more than a 2 to 1 firepower advantage at range 1 and 3, and only close to 5/3 at range 2.

 

Crits can obiously be a factor, but even in the best case scenario, a Z has less than a 1 in 6 chance of dealing a crit to a Tie (range 1 focused shot on a focusless tie) so an important crit will be rare.


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#184 jpltanis

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 03:19 PM

Thanks for doing this test.

 

May I ask, how competitive was this battle?  Was it one-sided?   You hinted on the dice effect.  Did one side just have extremely good or bad rolls? 



#185 iPeregrine

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 04:00 PM

This is confirmed by my mathwing calculus:
Discounting crits, the only range at which Ties have less than a 4/3 firepower advantage is at range 2 if the defender is wiithout focus and even then it's still close to a 4/3 advantage. If the defender has a focus, then the Ties have more than a 2 to 1 firepower advantage at range 1 and 3, and only close to 5/3 at range 2.


Could you explain this in more detail? How exactly does the TIE have a firepower advantage when both ships have two attack dice and you don't have Howlrunner? If anything the z-95s should have the advantage since they can take target locks to boost their initial long-range shot and then any ship that didn't spend its target lock will have a focus + TL stack on the following turn (probably at range 1).

If you're referring to the fact that the TIEs are shooting at 2 agility with 2 attack while the z-95s are shooting at 3 agility with 2 attack then you also need to account for the fact that the z-95 has an extra HP to make up for that lower agility.
 

Crits can obiously be a factor, but even in the best case scenario, a Z has less than a 1 in 6 chance of dealing a crit to a Tie (range 1 focused shot on a focusless tie) so an important crit will be rare.


This may be true for a single ship, but a 1/6 chance is still significant when looking at an entire list. Assuming your 1/6 number is correct a whole squad of eight z-95s has about a 75% chance of getting a crit through each turn. And given the number of crits that inflict extra damage or cripple a ship there's a non-trivial chance that you'll be losing a ship that you wouldn't have lost if you had shields.

Edited by iPeregrine, 20 July 2014 - 04:02 PM.


#186 Icareane

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 04:05 PM

It was actually pretty one sided in favor of the Ties result wise with better rolls on the tie side. We'll probably do more tests because of the rolls even if we tried to correct by removing a damaged tie from play.

 

Range 3 saw 4 ties against 4 Z: the Zs did nothing while the ties stripped 2 shields. This is slightly better than expected for the Ties, but nothing to write home about.

Range 1 saw 2 damage on a Tie (average should be around 2 or 3) with 4 Z at range 1 and 4 at range 2 most with no action due to academy blocking. The ties destroyed the damaged Z and another one. WIth 4 Ties at range 1  and 4 ties at range 2 with focus, this is expected. We removed the damaged Tie to continue the test.

 

 

We stopped the test a couple of turns later, when the Z were reduced to 5 (2 or 3 damaged) and the Ties still had 7 ties (2 damaged).

 

 

During the engagement: at range 3 the ties have a firepower advantage. At range 1, a good proportion of the Zs can usually be blocked, meaning that the firepower advantage the Ties have is actually increased. The Ties are also more agile in a furball, meaning that they can concentrate firepower more while getting actions.


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#187 jpltanis

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 04:24 PM

I appreciate the report, your honest observations, and most of all your willingness to do more tests.  I can't thank you enough.  I lack the Z95s to do this myself.  I know with 16 ships on the table, the battle tended to be long.  I hope you enjoyed playing it.

Keep us posted.



#188 Icareane

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 04:25 PM

 

 

This may be true for a single ship, but a 1/6 chance is still significant when looking at an entire list. Assuming your 1/6 number is correct a whole squad of eight z-95s has about a 75% chance of getting a crit through each turn. And given the number of crits that inflict extra damage or cripple a ship there's a non-trivial chance that you'll be losing a ship that you wouldn't have lost if you had shields. 

Of all crits, the only really crippling ones for a Tie in a swarm are:

direct hit, blinded pilot, weapon malfunction and minor explosion (only count 1 as it has a less than 50% chance of being a problem) this means that 12 in 33 crits are a big problem. Consider that a tie only has  3HP, this means that more than 1/3 of the crits will target your last hull point (could also be the 2nd hit on a single HP Tie (or third on a 2HP TIE )). Combine those 2 numbers and you will see that only 2/9 of all crits you receive will matter. Now also consider the 1/6 number I gave you and you will see why I said that meaningful crits will be rare.

 

For the firepower comparison : if you take a TL, then the Ties have an even greater advantage in firepower as you cannot use it in defense. Also consider that if you can lock, then you can be blocked on the following turn meaning no lock+focus stack.


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#189 iPeregrine

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 04:36 PM

Now also consider the 1/6 number I gave you and you will see why I said that meaningful crits will be rare.


No, they really aren't, because you're still just considering one ship. Assuming your 1/6 and 2/9 numbers are correct the swarm of eight z-95s has about a 26% chance each turn of inflicting a "meaningful" crit. IOW, each turn roll an attack die, on a blank remove one of your ships that would otherwise still be alive.
 

For the firepower comparison : if you take a TL, then the Ties have an even greater advantage in firepower as you cannot use it in defense.


Not really, because focus only works once and therefore the majority of defense rolls you make will be without focus (or will have no eyes to use your focus) either way. So in exchange for having one z-95 not have a defensive focus token I get all eight of my z-95s to have a target lock, and all of them get to shoot before your TIEs.

And of course you don't have to use the TL option if you don't want to, it's just silly to claim that the TIEs have a firepower advantage when the z-95s have the extra offense-boosting action available.
 

Also consider that if you can lock, then you can be blocked on the following turn meaning no lock+focus stack.


IOW, "if you're in range to shoot I get to block you next turn". Remember that the z-95s move after the TIEs, so they can move just barely into range 3 and get their target locks. And even if you do block them a leftover TL is better than no action at all.

And you're also ignoring anything that happens after the initial pass. Let's say we have a z-95 and a TIE with no shot this turn because everything is outside their arc. The z-95 can take a target lock for future use, the TIE can, at best, try to barrel roll into a better position. So, assuming the z-95 can maneuver back into the fight next turn it will either have a focus + TL stack or k-turn with a TL, while the TIE fighter just has its basic focus or actionless k-turn.

Edited by iPeregrine, 20 July 2014 - 04:39 PM.


#190 Red Castle

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 05:35 PM

Not really, because focus only works once and therefore the majority of defense rolls you make will be without focus (or will have no eyes to use your focus) either way. So in exchange for having one z-95 not have a defensive focus token I get all eight of my z-95s to have a target lock, and all of them get to shoot before your TIEs.


And of course you don't have to use the TL option if you don't want to, it's just silly to claim that the TIEs have a firepower advantage when the z-95s have the extra offense-boosting action available.

 

Out of curiosity, how do you assign your Target Lock against a swarm? 4 on one, 4 on a second? All on the same? 3-3-2 on different ships?

 

Because that's my only problem with TL over Focus against a swarm, you don't know which shot will destroy the target, so you can either lose your target lock if the target drop early so no action for you, or be forced to make an unmodified roll with another ship if the target is more resilient than expected. Focus solve this problem, and have the bonus of being use in defense.

 

Other than that, the possibility of making a TL+Focus shot next turn help the Z for sure.


Edited by Red Castle, 20 July 2014 - 05:37 PM.

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#191 jpltanis

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 05:58 PM

I won't put more than 3 TL on a Tie, so 3-3-2 would be the option.   On the initial attack, the Z should be able to down one Tie, before they return fire.   

 

The focus attack also has merit, because one won't waste the action, if the ship gets destroy before one attacks,

 

In my tests:

 

The AI would use the TL when ever it could.  It seemed to be very effective for it often would result in 2 "hit" symbol.  The Tie would be force to spend the focus token to block it (making its return attack less effective).  



#192 Icareane

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 01:23 AM

On the crit side : I redid the math in excel and I was actually wrong.
Best case scenario, range 1 focused shot against a focus less Tie.
Odds of rolling at least one crit are 1-(7/8)^3 = 0.330
Odds of hitting at least once knowning that you rolled at least a crit are 0.805
This gives a 0.266 chance of landing a crit (0.058 to land a meaningful crit).

In the same scenario, Ties have a 0.3 chance of landing a crit, so about 0.027 chance to land a meaningful crit.

Looking at a single ship is important to get an idea of the probability as we're looking at a best case scenario.

OW, "if you're in range to shoot I get to block you next turn". Remember that the z-95s move after the TIEs, so they can move just barely into range 3 and get their target locks. And even if you do block them a leftover TL is better than no action at all.

TL = range 7.5, Ties have the 5 forward, so if you're jousting, it means they can now be at range 1.5 before you move. Tell me how :
- first you move to barely in range with 8! ships.
- you get an action with an opponent at range 1.5 (with friends all around) with a ship with no hard 1 turn.
 
@Iperegrine:  Just play the match and tell me how often you get TL+focus stacks that you can use.
4 academies+ 4 obsidians against 4 bandits+4 talas.

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#193 Rocket Launcher

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 04:52 AM

Hi Guys.

 

Firstly what a thread!!! I apologise for my English counterpart but not all of us are Imperialist. (Good luck to Scotland if they vote to leave).  

 

As a question: Can you math-hammerers factor in player familiarity? I have found (in my experience) that I get better when I am familiar with a ship (or army in 40K). My win ratio improves and my effectiveness improves.

 

Also I tend to fly better if I "like" the ship and feel more comfortable with it therefore increasing its effectiveness. I find the HWK an effective ship in my list even though people (fellow wargamers where I play) disagree. If I pick a new ship (or 40k army) I will more often than not loose the first few games as I get used to the particular way of playing.  

 

Where I can agree and see the argument for Maths (USA: mathematics) even though I do not understand most of it (Social Science degree!!!!!), I will disregard this to fly what I like thus improving my win ratio and having a good time. I do not netlist and create my own unique units, that said vvv...

 

BTW I have run this zwarm with some success:

Blount + Assault missile + Swarm tactics

Cracken + clusters + swarm

3x Bandito's with concussion.


Edited by Rocket Launcher, 21 July 2014 - 05:23 AM.


#194 Lagomorphia

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 08:39 AM

Firstly what a thread!!! I apologise for my English counterpart but not all of us are Imperialist. (Good luck to Scotland if they vote to leave).

 

...

 

...

 

???



#195 WonderWAAAGH

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 12:25 PM

Firstly what a thread!!! I apologise for my English counterpart but not all of us are Imperialist. (Good luck to Scotland if they vote to leave).

 
...
 
...
 
???

I think he's talking about a particular poster from the first page. Breakfast, anyone?

It's not easy being green.


#196 jpltanis

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Posted 21 July 2014 - 12:44 PM

I believe your observations are accurate.  The Tie Fighter has been out for a long time.  People that fly the Tie swarm really know their abilities inside and out.  We have mastered the different turns for keeping the squad together, plus many other tricks.

The Z-95 is still relatively new.  In time, people will also get better in using them, discovering and optimizing their capabilities.  Probably not to the point of the Ties, because there are many Tie pilots that one can choose for a squad.  The Z-95 only have 4 options currently.

 

Hi Guys.

 

Firstly what a thread!!! I apologise for my English counterpart but not all of us are Imperialist. (Good luck to Scotland if they vote to leave).  

 

As a question: Can you math-hammerers factor in player familiarity? I have found (in my experience) that I get better when I am familiar with a ship (or army in 40K). My win ratio improves and my effectiveness improves.

 

Also I tend to fly better if I "like" the ship and feel more comfortable with it therefore increasing its effectiveness. I find the HWK an effective ship in my list even though people (fellow wargamers where I play) disagree. If I pick a new ship (or 40k army) I will more often than not loose the first few games as I get used to the particular way of playing.  

 

Where I can agree and see the argument for Maths (USA: mathematics) even though I do not understand most of it (Social Science degree!!!!!), I will disregard this to fly what I like thus improving my win ratio and having a good time. I do not netlist and create my own unique units, that said vvv...

 

BTW I have run this zwarm with some success:

Blount + Assault missile + Swarm tactics

Cracken + clusters + swarm

3x Bandito's with concussion.






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