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Improving your attack, let's look at some numbers (WARNING THERE WILL BE MATH)


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#1 Hrathen

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Posted 20 January 2014 - 11:59 PM

Warning this is a MATH-WING Thread, if you hate that sort of thing stop reading right now. Aren't you glad I protected you from reading about something you hate.

Are they gone? Good, I will proceed.

In X-wing we always want to do more damage, right, So I thought I would put together a little analyisi of what upgrades and actions actual do to help us towards this all important goal.

Basically most actions and upgrades increase your damage output in three ways. I will start with things simply. We can get more complicated later

Focus: if you take the focus action (or otherthings that let you turn eyeballs into successes) you increase your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.

Target Lock: (it is a little more complicated with other re-rolls, but the Taret Lock works as an estimation) Assuming you don't also have a focus, TL increases your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.

Roll extra Dice: Again assuming you don't already have a focus token, rolling an extra dice increases your expected damage by 1/2.

More analasys to follow, but the first most obvious point I see, is how great Focus is. Statisitcally, it is as good as Target Lock, and if you already have at leat 2 attack dice (everyone but the HWK 290) it is even better than rolling an extra dice.

Considering the fact that focus can be spent to attack any ship as well as to defend, and tagert lock can only be spent to attack a single specific ship, focus is a good go to action. Target Lock is still good to stack with a focus if you can or to fire ordnance, but it will no longer be my go to offenive action, even if I know who my target is going to be.

This has some ramifications for upgrades.
#1 Expose is terrible. Even if all it costs you is your action you are just as well of taking the Focus action.

#2 Marksmanship - not as bad as I have been telling people for years. Let's face it if you have a high pilot skill and three attack dice you are probably going to spend your focus on your attack (if you have the token) And Marksmanship does give you the crit. Is it worth the 4 points. Probably not in most circumstances, but I definatly think there is a place for it. Especially if you bought the ships you want and you have 4 points left over.
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#2 DraconPyrothayan

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:03 AM

Warning this is a MATH-WING Thread, if you hate that sort of thing stop reading right now. Aren't you glad I protected you from reading about something you hate.

Are they gone? Good, I will proceed.

In X-wing we always want to do more damage, right, So I thought I would put together a little analyisi of what upgrades and actions actual do to help us towards this all important goal.

Basically most actions and upgrades increase your damage output in three ways. I will start with things simply. We can get more complicated later

Focus: if you take the focus action (or otherthings that let you turn eyeballs into successes) you increase your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.

Target Lock: (it is a little more complicated with other re-rolls, but the Taret Lock works as an estimation) Assuming you don't also have a focus, TL increases your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.

Roll extra Dice: Again assuming you don't already have a focus token, rolling an extra dice increases your expected damage by 1/2.

More analasys to follow, but the first most obvious point I see, is how great Focus is. Statisitcally, it is as good as Target Lock, and if you already have at leat 2 attack dice (everyone but the HWK 290) it is even better than rolling an extra dice.

Considering the fact that focus can be spent to attack any ship as well as to defend, and tagert lock can only be spent to attack a single specific ship, focus is a good go to action. Target Lock is still good to stack with a focus if you can or to fire ordnance, but it will no longer be my go to offenive action, even if I know who my target is going to be.

This has some ramifications for upgrades.
#1 Expose is terrible. Even if all it costs you is your action you are just as well of taking the Focus action.

#2 Marksmanship - not as bad as I have been telling people for years. Let's face it if you have a high pilot skill and three attack dice you are probably going to spend your focus on your attack (if you have the token) And Marksmanship does give you the crit. Is it worth the 4 points. Probably not in most circumstances, but I definatly think there is a place for it. Especially if you bought the ships you want and you have 4 points left over.

Marksmanship only costs 3 points. The reason we don't value it is because Focus is almost as good offensively (a crit vs a hit, unless you have multiple attacks), but Focus also has the option to be used defensively. Also, Focus is free.



#3 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:05 AM

I told you there would be more. Now that I realized that Focus and TL have the same Offensive bump, I am not as excited for the Targeting Computer as I once was.

It isn't worthless, remember TL + F is still the best way to go. Each dice has an expected hit of 15/16 that is a boost of 7/16.
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#4 DraconPyrothayan

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:08 AM

Targeting Computer is mostly there for PTL Interceptors, I'd say.



#5 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:09 AM

Warning this is a MATH-WING Thread, if you hate that sort of thing stop reading right now. Aren't you glad I protected you from reading about something you hate.
Are they gone? Good, I will proceed.
In X-wing we always want to do more damage, right, So I thought I would put together a little analyisi of what upgrades and actions actual do to help us towards this all important goal.
Basically most actions and upgrades increase your damage output in three ways. I will start with things simply. We can get more complicated later
Focus: if you take the focus action (or otherthings that let you turn eyeballs into successes) you increase your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.
Target Lock: (it is a little more complicated with other re-rolls, but the Taret Lock works as an estimation) Assuming you don't also have a focus, TL increases your expected damage by 1/4 per dice.
Roll extra Dice: Again assuming you don't already have a focus token, rolling an extra dice increases your expected damage by 1/2.
More analasys to follow, but the first most obvious point I see, is how great Focus is. Statisitcally, it is as good as Target Lock, and if you already have at leat 2 attack dice (everyone but the HWK 290) it is even better than rolling an extra dice.
Considering the fact that focus can be spent to attack any ship as well as to defend, and tagert lock can only be spent to attack a single specific ship, focus is a good go to action. Target Lock is still good to stack with a focus if you can or to fire ordnance, but it will no longer be my go to offenive action, even if I know who my target is going to be.
This has some ramifications for upgrades.
#1 Expose is terrible. Even if all it costs you is your action you are just as well of taking the Focus action.
#2 Marksmanship - not as bad as I have been telling people for years. Let's face it if you have a high pilot skill and three attack dice you are probably going to spend your focus on your attack (if you have the token) And Marksmanship does give you the crit. Is it worth the 4 points. Probably not in most circumstances, but I definatly think there is a place for it. Especially if you bought the ships you want and you have 4 points left over.

Marksmanship only costs 3 points. The reason we don't value it is because Focus is almost as good offensively (a crit vs a hit, unless you have multiple attacks), but Focus also has the option to be used defensively. Also, Focus is free.

Sorry about the points being wrong. Until I ran these numbers I thought Marksmanship was about the worst upgrade ever, now I a willing to concede that there might be a place for it.

The point is that it is a little better than focus in some circumstances. And Focus is as good as TL so it is better than either one (in some circumstances)
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#6 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:10 AM

Targeting Computer is mostly there for PTL Interceptors, I'd say.


Those will be nasty
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#7 Shaadea

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:17 AM

Also don't forget that TL can generate a crit, where focus gives you only normal hits. Each crit has a chance of doing 2 damage instead of 1 (there are 7/33 cards doing 2 damage right away, and another 8/33 that can do an extra +1 or even more damage). This is hard to get into a math formula, but shouldn't be overlooked.

Plus, as you mentioned, if you can't do anything offensive in a turn (wrong firearc etc) you can prepare with TL for next turn, and if you roll well on an attack (all hits on the first roll) you will not need your TL and it is there next turn for another attack against same target (especially nice vs large ships that you can't bring down on one hit). So there's a lot going on around TL that's very very difficult to put into a formula/perentage output (at least for me).

 

My rules for attack right now: If it's a shielded ship I go for focus, if it's unshielded I use TL.


Edited by Shaadea, 21 January 2014 - 12:19 AM.

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#8 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:18 AM

Next upgrade discussion:
Proton torpedoes
on an x-wing you basically get +1 attack dice and a focus on 1 dice (I am ignoring the crit for now)
That increases your attack by +1/2 for the extra dice
We might expect that we get an extra 1/4 for the equivalent of one focused dice, but it if you think about it if you roll 4 dice you would expect 1 of them to roll a eyeball, so the actual increase is closer to +1

So an X-wing firing a proton torpedo increases the attack by 1 1/4 which may seem good, but it still takes your action.

If you target-locked or focused instead you would increase your damage output by 3/4.

If you the proton torpedo on a Y-wing you increase you damage by 1 1/2 points compared to only 1/2 if you TL or F.

Again all these calculations assume you don't have a focus as well. A Proton Torpedo where you have a focus is going to do much better.
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#9 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:25 AM

Also don't forget that TL can generate a crit, where focus gives you only normal hits. Each crit has a chance of doing 2 damage instead of 1 (there are 7/33 cards doing 2 damage right away, and another 8/33 that can do an extra +1 or even more damage). This is hard to get into a math formula, but shouldn't be overlooked.
Plus, as you mentioned, if you can't do anything offensive in a turn (wrong firearc etc) you can prepare with TL for next turn, and if you roll well on an attack (all hits on the first roll) you will not need your TL and it is there next turn for another attack against same target (especially nice vs large ships that you can't bring down on one hit). So there's a lot going on around TL that's very very difficult to put into a formula/perentage output (at least for me).
 
My rules for attack right now: If it's a shielded ship I go for focus, if it's unshielded I use TL.


Definitely true, on both accounts. And even if your crit doesn't do 2 damage, it likely did something nasty. But the added flexibility of the Focus over the Target Lock seems more valuable than the increased chance for a crit, IMO.

But I totally agree, if you aren't going to get a shot, and you aren't to worry about getting shot, then a Target Lock is a great choice for an action. The power of the TL+F should not be underestimated. 15/16 chance to hit is a pretty good probability.
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#10 Magnus Grendel

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 01:53 AM

Comment on Expose:

 

I agree, it's not great, because (as noted) Focus often gives you a greater damage boost and is free.

 

Does it have any use? If I had to pick one, I'd say on two-attack die fighters. When only rolling two dice against three or more defence dice plus a potential evade token, your average roll isn't that relevant because an average roll will do precisely sod all. What matters is your maximum possible roll, because only if you roll that have you got a significant chance of achieving anything. Hence an extra die, or an extra auto-damage, can in that situation be better than rerolls or results-altering.

 

If Expose has a use, it's on TIE fighters, allowing them to push their largely useless long range attack up to levels that might actually score damage. That said, I still think it's overpriced - compare the Black Squadron pilots with "gain an extra damage" abilities, who pay at best one or two points for the privilege...



#11 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 07:32 AM

Here is a question for everyone to consider.
You are in a TIE Advanced at rage 3 of a 2(3 with range) agility ship.

Is it a good idea to take the target lock, but not use it when you fire, hoping that you can focus and fire next round?
What if you are in an X-wing shooting at a 3(4 with range) agility ship?
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#12 Khyros

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 07:55 AM

The x1 against a naked 3 agility roll will do .35 damage.  Then the following turn, lets assume it is in range 1 of the X wing, with a F+TL - it will likely do 1.95 damage for a total of 2.3 damage.  If you used the TL on the first turn, you'd do .61 damage.  On the second turn, again, assume range 1, you take a F or TL (ignoring the effects of crits atm) and you'd do 1.47 damage.  The total expected damage is 2.08.  In this case, you are better off holding onto the TL the first turn.

 

 

However, if you were only at R2 on the second turn, the expected damage is .35 + 1.14 = 1.49 (saving the TL) vs. .61 + .85 = 1.46 (using the TL).  As you can see, the outcome is practically the same.  If the range is not changing (say you are chasing a ship) you will do more damage using the TL and then the F on the second turn.  


The fleet:  

Spoiler

#13 hothie

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:30 AM

Question for math-wingers: you always directly compare expose ands focus against each other. How good is expose _with_ focus?
The expose threads talk about Vader being a viable option for expose. I'm gonna try it out soon, and was just wondering what the math looks like when expose and focus are combined.

#14 Endgame124

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:51 AM

Vader with expose and Focus is the same as running an X-Wing with Focus.  If you're willing to sink 38 points into Vader, try a Homing missile and expose on vader.  If you're shooting at something like a Dagger Squadron at range 3, you can use Vader to Target Lock and Focus and fire the homing missile.  Doing this, I've found I don't always need to spend the target lock to get 4 hits on the dagger squadron.  The following turn, I can potentially get into range 1, expose and focus, and then have another 4 dice attack on that dagger and kill it before it gets to fire.

 

Expose is slightly more interesting on the imperial side as well, as you can have howlrunner around with squad leader.  A Saber Squadron or Mauler Mithel with Expose + focus + the reroll from howl runner can have a legit chance at 5 hits.


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#15 hothie

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:58 AM

I was thinking 37 points. Vader with expose and engine, and run him like an interceptor, keeping out of firing arcs. Toss in fel with ptl and stealth, and see if you can keep 2 BSPS with DTF within range 1 of them. I know its only 4 guns, but staying out of arcs will help keep them alive. Maybe not. Ill try it out Sunday and see if I can make it work.

#16 Khyros

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 10:06 AM

The math on expose shows that you want to F+TL before you F+Ex or TL+Ex.  As such, the average damage on Vader would be maximized by F+TL.  That said - the standard deviation on Expose is greater, so it is possible to inflict more damage with Expose (obviously)... So it could possibly have a place as a stealth killer.  But that's about the only place it would be useful.


The fleet:  

Spoiler

#17 Endgame124

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 10:43 AM

The math on expose shows that you want to F+TL before you F+Ex or TL+Ex.  As such, the average damage on Vader would be maximized by F+TL.  That said - the standard deviation on Expose is greater, so it is possible to inflict more damage with Expose (obviously)... So it could possibly have a place as a stealth killer.  But that's about the only place it would be useful.

 

Of course, there are times where your target lock hangs around with Vader after an attack - rolling all hits and focus come up often enough you can get some use out of expose + TL + focus.  And Expose + TL + Focus is better than just TL + Focus :).  The question is, does it come up often enough to be worth 4 points?



#18 Effenhoog

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:27 AM

target lock also has the (slight) advantage that it does not go away between rounds, so if you roll all hits you can save the target lock for a potential TL+focus shot.  If you know that you cannot be shot this round, taking a target lock over focus and maybe keeping it for the next round on a good roll can be worth a shot, since the odds are about the same between TL and focus

 

Also if you are having trouble finishing something off, you may consider taking a target lock, NOT spending it even if you roll poorly, and then just take the TL+focus shot the next turn if you can.

 

I once had a game where I had two B-wings at less than half HP against a single academy pilot, and I just could not seem to hit it despite taking a focused shot with both ships almost every turn.  Meanwhile, the academy tie was pecking away at my agility 1 ships until I finally just decided to save up the stacked TL+focus shots to finish him off

 

not really a math thing, just something to consider when choosing actions


Edited by Effenhoog, 21 January 2014 - 11:28 AM.


#19 Hrathen

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:32 AM

Expose: - what does it cost you

1- your action - this is why we compare it to Focus.

2- an agility dice (granted an agility dice is not as good as an attack dice)

3- 4 points (this makes it one of the most expensive upgrades)

4- your elite pilot upgrade. (This means that just about the only pilot who can focus and expose in the whole game is Vader)

 

I think it might have uses if you could get rid of just one of these costs.  For example if it was something you could do, but it didn't cost your action, it would be really cool, but it would still cost 4 points, almost as much as a gunner.

 

The problem with it costing an agility is it has to be put on an elite pilot-- and expensive pilot. 

 

The value of Expose is of course a "value" judgement, someone might look at all those costs and think it was worth 1 attack dice, but I don't.

 

Compare it to the costs of a Heavy Laser Cannon

- does not cost your action

- leaves your agility the same

1 - 7 points (that is a lot, especially if you want more than 1 of them)

2 - It takes your Cannon upgrade, but that isn't as bad as taking your elite talent upgrade slot

3 - It seriously reduces crits.

 

But my biggest problem with the HLC is still that it only increases damage by about 1/2 a hit, (15/16 if you focus)

That is why the advanced sensors on the B-wings is so popular (Always get that focus or TL)

(In the case of a HLC I do think a target lock would be better because it can get you some crits back.)


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#20 Bilisknir

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:44 AM

HLC is lovely because defender adds no def dice for range 3!


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