Way to go, Brett!
And kudos too, to @DTDanix. On the rare occasion that he doesn't WIN Worlds, he still makes it all the way to the Final.
I would've loved to watch this match live, as apparently 40+ other players did.
FFG OP twitter reports:
65/80 total players with
41 Rebel (33 Spectre)
Curious if those 15 slots are just no shows, un sold tickets, or more likely a combination of both. Anyone know if tickets were still available leading up to the event?
FFG neutered our numbers from last year, but 65 is still almost half as many.. that's.. not good.
This has to be the most unhealthy meta since 4x4 as well. Scum hunters were bad two years ago, but at least then there was even like a 8-10 point variance in each list. Here it is literally 1 point variance, with I am going to guess the vast majority just running motivation anyway.
51% total spectre is less than we expected, but still horrible for the game. 63% of the total lists are Rebel with 80% of Rebel lists being Spectre.
And no word from FFG about anything coming down the pipeline, which I know many of us were foolishly hoping would come out of Worlds.
We got a revamped OP play plan that will try to draw players out of their homes and into the store for Campaign play, which could possibly translate into an increase in playerbase. But at the same time, the player base is bleeding out heavy due to the lack of communication about new product from FFG. I also think the prizes they are offering for these kits are way less than desirable, not even alt art anymore outside of the DT, just this extended art on cards nobody uses.
IA's darkest hour?
As someone who've played the Sabs a fair bit lately, what they need isn't to get their bonkers blast back. To make them more viable they need something else.
Reduce the deployment cost by one (which essentially gives them a needed reroll for the same price, TC, while reasonably denying them another attachment on top) and the figure cost by one or increase their health by one.
Ran into @JJs Juggernaut at Dice Tower Con and talked him into a game of Armada! With everything going on at the Con I forgot my Tripod, so the angle isn't as good as I'd have liked - I actually had to mount the camera up on a chair, tied up with some spare lanyards, on top of a table. Enjoy!
I just spent 5 days a Dice Tower Con, a convention where people spend pretty much the whole time playing board games.
I saw a TON of out of print games being played! Starcraft, Forbidden Stars, Queen's Gambit.... even IF a game eventually becomes unsupported--- it still never dies. Heck people still play Decipher card games! Armada will ALWAYS be a part of my life. Always.
2 nitpicks: CT doesn't have to deal damage to trigger Pinned Down, he just has to not miss. That means he needs to make range and not have an x-men rolled on him.
CT can't use To the Limit to move after using Barrage, because of how Stun and Movement actions work. He will gain the 4 movement points from the Move action, but then will become stunned before he can spend those movement points.
He looks like a really solid figure for Rebels though in a points slot that's been lacking for them.
From his Campaign reveal of the Barrage attribute, I wasn't 100% for sure that CT-1701 would have the goods to be a Trooper that the Rebels need. I have X-Man Stress Disorder, where I truly believe that every opponent's white die will result in a Dodge.
However, at first glance, there is a lot to like. A cost 7 figure that does two attacks -- even if one of those attacks adds a white die for the defender -- is a great value. Additionally CT's surge ability to gain a damage power token works great with boosting the 2nd attack during the Barrage special action. Pin Them Down is unlike anything in Imperial Assault currently and, when implemented correctly, could really swing the momentum of a game.
But is CT's damage output enough to enable all the other good stuff? Let's take a closer look at the old man.
Yo dawg, I heard you like damage graphs. So I'm gonna put damage graphs on your damage graphs so that your damage graphs can now damage graph! (As usual, we're not taking in consideration any rerolls.)
Let's start simple with just a regular attack pool w/ his surge abilities:
Red: target at 4 Accuracy, vs one black die
Green: target at 4 Accuracy, vs one white die
Blue: target at 6 Accuracy, vs one black die
Yellow: target at 6 Accuracy, vs one white die
CT has a 76.39% chance vs. one black die and a 48.61% chance vs. 1 white die of keeping at least 1 surge to use for abilities. That CT does not have a 100% chance of doing at least 1 DMG vs. a black die is a little disappointing. He'll need help for rerolls, like Trusted Ally, Officer's Training and Mitigate. We'll talk more later about which figures and command cards synergizes with CT best, but he will definitely need something to help him in case your opponent uses Brace For Impact, Stealth Tactics, a block or evade power token (or has a natural +1 block or evade), etc.
CT can use Barrage, where he can attack either 2 targets or the same target twice.. at the cost of adding a white die to the defender for the second attack. There's definitely a worse chance of having a surge to use (43.52% chance vs black/white & 25.23% chance vs. white/white of getting at least one surge). Here's what CT's attacks look like when he gives a white die to the defender:
Red: target at 4 Accuracy, vs one black die & one white die
Green: target at 4 Accuracy, vs two white die
When combining the results of a Barrage on the same single-die defending target at 4 Acc, the results don't look terrible for a cost 7 figure. It reminds me of a stretched out damage result from blue/green/yellow attack pools.
Red: 1st attack vs. one black die, 2nd attack vs. one black and one white die
Green: 1st attack vs. one white die, 2nd attack vs. two white dice
Optimizing Barrage's Damage Output
Optimizing CT's damage output is about the same as any other Rebel hero - Focus up, Buttercup! But there are also options to help buff the second attack from Barrage, which might make CT's damage output look a little more enticing. First we'll look at a Focused Barrage CT attack from two angles: one where surges are spent to increase damage output, and one where surges are only spent to obtain the damage power token. (Focused CT has a 86.81% chance vs. one black die and a 61.81% chance vs. one white die of having at least one surge to use for the power token.)
Target at 4 Accuracy
Red: Focused vs. one black die, spending any surge for +1 DMG
Green: Focused vs. one white die, spending any surge for +1 DMG
Blue: Focused vs. one black die, spending no surges for atk bonus
Yellow: Focused vs. one white die, spending no surges for atk bonus
Now we assess what the 2nd Barrage attack would look like with +1 DMG from the power token:
Target at 4 Accuracy
Red: +1 DMG vs. one black die & one white die
Green: +1 DMG vs. two white dice
To further improve the odds for this second Barrage attack, CT can use Ko-Tun's Dead Precise ability when he spends his damage power token. This will apply -1 DODGE to the attack results, which drastically improves the math in CT's favor. (There's not an easy way to simulate -1 DODGE on the Attack Calculator currently, so no exact results for you.)
Combining the Focused first attack with the Power Token second attack on one figure, we can expect these results:
Target at 4 Accuracy
Red: Focused (no surge atk benefits) vs one black die, +1 DMG vs. one black die and one white die
Green: Focused (no surge atk benefits) vs one white die, +1 DMG vs. two white dice
I would love to have the CT that does 10+ DMG to a single die defender over the course of Barrage. Getting 7 damage is essentially a coin flip... and could be helpful late in the game when you're chasing down your opponent's Troopers, eWeequays or Greedo. Since CT is pretty limited in damage amplification (no surge ability for +2 DMG, no Pierce), it wouldn't be wise trying to target figures like Darth Vader or IG-88... other than the chance of getting Pin Them Down applied.
Pin Them Down is what takes CT-1701 from "eh" to "nice!" If CT can make his target suffer at least 1 DMG, the player using CT can choose one condition or power token the target has and discard it. This debuffing ability is unlike anything currently offered in Imperial Assault!
Edit: As @Tvboy instructs below, "if the attack did not miss" does NOT mean the same as "if the target suffered at least 1 damage". Instead, Pin Them Down is applied when 1) CT rolls enough Accuracy for the attack to hit and 2) the defender does NOT roll a DODGE. I reworked the following paragraphs with this mind.
Taking a look back above, a Focused CT using Barrage should absolutely take the Focus from a eWeequay, Greedo, Han or [Insert Rebel Figure Here That Needs Focus To Be Dangerous]... all CT needs to do is roll the Accuracy and avoid the Dodge. Additionally, figures that end up with offensive power tokens can have them stripped before they can attack. Even if CT doesn't apply any damage with his second attack in Barrage, that figure still loses a Focus, Hidden or power token, too! So it is very important to have CT as the first or second activation in the 2nd round.
His surge ability for +2 Accuracy and Weaken is more than just a nice bonus to the rest of his kit. CT joins Tress, R2-D2, Saska and MHD-19 as the only Rebel figures that can Weaken. Weakening an enemy that just got Focus taken away might be worth using Blitz or Hera's Call the Shots ability for an extra surge to Weaken. On the other hand, it could be CT is NEVER spending surges other than on Weaken, especially versus Imperials (where there will be significantly less Beneficial conditions to remove).
CT-1701 being able to Weaken two figures in Barrage might be nearly as strong as doing 7+ DMG on one figure with CT being Focused and spending a damage power token.
Other Attack Modifier Options
Command cards that help him include:
Concentrated Fire (matches up well w/ Alliance Ranger lists)
Ready Weapons (giving himself 2 DMG tokens)
Prepared For Battle
Call the Vanguard (your opponent loses a Focus before he/she can even activate this round)
Element of Surprise (which you can use on the Barrage second attack to remove the white die)
To the Limit (you could move CT away from combat after Barrage no this is wrong, don't listen to me here.)
Oh, and one more thing:
Lord Vader is not pleased.
12 Health is actually pretty good for a figure of cost 7. I'm sure his Health is so high (and why he has the Guardian keyword) is so you can run him straight into trouble and force your opponent to spend at least 3 attacks removing CT from the board. Take Position would be an interesting choice to use early 2nd round, especially on the upcoming Tarkin Initiative map where figures move at deployment.
Given his cost and Pin Them Down/Barrage, you should be using CT-1701 to attack, attack, attack.
CT-1701 is going to find a place in Rebel lists. I'm not currently convinced both he and Ko-Tun can produce enough damage output between themselves and one deployment of elite Alliance Rangers. But CT & Ko-Tun might be an interesting pair with Han in an 9-Activation list. CT by himself makes an interesting replacement for Drokkatta or Chewbacca in Smuggler boxes with Han. There's also some interesting CT pairings with Scum -- debuffing and weakening targets for eWeequays sounds like a great usage of him.
CT has nearly all the tools he needs to be very scary -- except native damage output. It'll be up to players to see how many resources they're willing to commit to enable CT and avoid developing X-man Stress Disorder themselves.
Evaluate Before They're Gone
Check out my older Evaluating Tyrants articles: