I've really been enjoying the Epic X-wing format. In fact, since the Imdaar Alpha events, it's the only way that I have played. Partially because I enjoy the new huge ships, partially as it's just fun to have more ships on the table, but also because I've enjoyed finding new strategies that are effective at the higher point totals. I've seen a few posts on here asking for strategy suggestions for Epic so, I thought I would share what I've found.
The huge ships are really fun to play and definitely have a learning curve to figure out how to make them effective. In my first few Epic matches my opponents would simply ignore them as I hadn't figure out how to have a large enough impact on the game with them. Now, they are often the first target. I typically play the GR-75 between 40-50 points and the CR-90 at around 110 -120. In either case they both bring strong resources to the table, but it's easy to waste them.
Regular ships have essentially 3 things they can do each turn: move, act, and then shoot. (I know there are exceptions) Huge ships are the same, but also have Energy to deal with. Depending on how you play, energy can either be a resource or a limitation. To get the most out of your huge ship you need to get the most out of each of these steps.
When I plot my movement dial, I always look first at my energy needs for the turn. Then I look for a chance to ram or otherwise block up the table. I've actually found I've killed as many ships with the rear of the ship while turning as I have from straight on rams. You have 2 big advantages with moving your huge ship: you move last and you know where you are going. Typically once my huge ship makes it close to my opponent they will have to start peeling off in a serious way for fear of being run over. This gives me a huge advantage as they are no longer flying to setup shots, but instead to stay alive. This gives the rest of your ships a huge advantage in the movement phase and you can often setup some great shots as your opponent will be horribly out of position. Even if you never hit anything directly, the fear of ramming will bust up your opponents formation and give you an advantage, so drive right at them!
A big surprise for me when with the GR-75 and CR90 is that they have essentially the same amount of energy to play with. Both can get up to 3 energy a turn from their dials and one more from an upgrade. I was sure the CR90 would have more available, but it doesn't. Using your energy well is key to Huge ships, so I always take the Engineering team on a CR-90 and almost always take the Quantum Storm title on the GR-75. Both give you a very significant boost in your Huge ships' ability to impact the game.
Some turns your whole energy output may go to recharging your shields, but otherwise you will want to spend it wisely. I build my ships to be able to spend 4 energy a turn, every turn. Again, I'm trying to maximize their impact on the game.
For the GR-75 that means handing out bonuses like candy. Comms Booster and Targeting Coordinator can be a great way to turn energy into higher effectiveness for the rest of your ships. Comms booster would be worthwhile if it only took away stress or handed out focus, but at both it is a no-brainer. I typically bring 2 Comms Boosters. Targeting Coordinator is great for setting up Assault Missiles or other ordnance as you know that your target will have moved when you go to use it. It let's you get that target lock after you've seen how the whole board is set. A Shield Projector can be very effective, especially with the Bright Hope title, but the 3 energy cost means you are spending most of your energy budget on just one effect. I've also found Backup Shield Generators to be very useful as they allow me to regain shields without burning an action.
For the CR-90 most of your energy will go towards firing secondary weapons. I favor Quad Lasers over Single Turbolasers for a few reasons. Fewer points, less energy to shoot, and they fit my style of using the huge ship as a formation breaker. I could see a build using Turbolasers that favored sitting back and taking long-range shots, but I haven't tried it yet. The biggest problem facing the CR-90 is that most of its attacks end up being straight die rolls. A Weapons Engineer will allow 2 of them to get re-rolls and I almost always play one. The Gunnery Team seems interesting, but I would almost always rather have another attack than change a single result from a focus to a hit. Given more energy they would be great, but on a tight energy budget I'd rather spend it elsewhere. Etahn Abaht can make the CR-90's shots hurt more, a Tactician is almost a no-brainer if you have more than 1 Quad Laser Cannon, and Roark Garnet may be the CR-90's best friend in the world. A bunch of un-boosted shots may not be that great, but at PS 12 you get to shoot first in a serious way.
Actions can be a total trap with the huge ships. In one game against a GR-75 my opponent had Toryn Farr, a WED droid, and Slicer Tools on the same ship. Which meant 7 action choices, but only one action to take. It is nice that you can't really lose your action in a Huge ship, but you also can't gain any more either. So, you need to be careful on adding upgrades that need an action to use. There is a massive opportunity cost as the the actions that are built into both ships are already very good. The above mentioned Toryn Farr, WED droid, and Slicer Tools cost both an action AND your energy! Which means you are also giving up other energy related effects that you could be using. They can all be effective, just make sure you realize the full cost of those upgrades.
Of the built in actions Reinforce is amazing and generally my default choice. Reinforce is the reason that a GR-75 takes more firepower to kill than a Falcon. Recover is nice, but a turn spent recovering shields is a turn that your ship is not doing much else. I'm a big fan of using Tibanna Gas Stores right before a Recover action so I can load up my guns or Comm Boost before recovering my shields. Coordinate is really nice based on timing. Because everyone is done moving when the Huge ship takes its action, Coordinate can be used really effectively with ships that can Barrel Roll or Boost. Especially when you earlier removed their stress with a Comms Booster! Jam is pretty cool as well and a great deterrent to Interceptors or Phantoms, although I find it is the action that I use the least.
Other Huge Ship Thoughts
Although he is a little expensive, Raymus Antilles is a lot of fun. He uses neither energy or actions and allows you another way to let your Huge ship impact the game.
I can't stress enough how awesome Comms Booster is. When plotting my dials I often plan out how much Stress I will take with K-Turns, etc knowing that the Comms Booster will be there to cleanup the mess.
I feel like all 3 of the GR-75 titles can be useful, but that the CR-90 titles are pretty lackluster. Dodonna's Pride has promise, but then you are giving up your Target Locks.
I've played a game with 2 CR-90's against each other and it was really fun. One flew with the Imperials and worked out great. If I was running an Epic tournament I would allow Imperial players to field them although I expect the Imps will be getting theirs announced at GenCon.
I haven't fielded multiple Huge ships yet. I don't think it works in a regular Epic game as the GR-75 doesn't support the CR-90 very well and 2 GR-75s will cost you too much firepower.
Other Epic Thoughts
Bring Assault Missiles.
PS is more important than in 100 point games. There is so much firepower that low PS ships die before ever shooting.
Having multiple ships at the same PS makes maneuvering in crowded spaces much easier.
There is more space, but don't spread out. The hardest part of learning to play Epic is figuring how to keep your force together enough to concentrate firepower without being vulnerable to getting run over or blasted apart by missiles. Huge ships need space to maneuver, but need to be close to the action to have their best impact.
I'd appreciate any thoughts or comments you may have? What have you seen that works or doesn't work?