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VaynMaanen

Can We Expect an Errata on TLT For Post Store Championship Season?

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To the OP:

 

I have no idea what FFG will do, your guess is as good as mine. In general, they tend to react slowly to avoid swinging too far in the other direction. Paraphrasing Alex, when FFG designs ships and upgrade cards they really don't know how it will affect the meta until they are released into the wild and they start getting actual tournament results. So, given that, intentionally being very slow to make changes via errata is a reasonable approach.

 

That said, they have acknowledged in the Punishing One preview that "you can find Twin Laser Turrets nearly everywhere you look for just six squad points". I'm not going to read too much into that except that they are aware of the problem.

 

 

No. 

 

The effects on the meta that TLT has is nothing like what the effects of the Phantom had. 

 

You are correct in that the effects are different:

  • The Phantom pushed the average Pilot Skill up to 9+, as this was the only way to counter Whisper's cost effectiveness and positional ability. The only cost effective PS9+ option at the time was Han Solo, so naturally that flooded the meta.
  • TLTs have rendered all vanilla generic ships obsolete. There is still the roughly 50-50 split of generic vs named pilots, but virtually all of the generic pilots are now carrying TLT, Crackshot, or Palpatine, which are all wave ~7 upgrades. Generics are now in net less cost effective than TLT Y-wings, so naturally the meta has been flooded by Y-wings and TLT.

I'm not sure which effect is actually worse, but they are both significant. If you want to quantify the direct effect on the meta, slightly more points were spent on Y-wings in Worlds 2015 Top 32 than were spent on Fat Falcons (the Phantom counter) in Worlds 2014 Top 32. Therefore it is reasonable to conclude that the TLT has had at least as much of an impact on the meta as pre-nerf Whisper had.

 

 

So I guess general consensus is TLT isn't necessarily competitively overpowered like the Phantom, just more effective than other options, so doesn't necessarily require a nerf more so than the other generic filler ships need a buff?

 

Whisper power creep and TLT power creep are very similar in many ways. We have been talking for years about how the generic X-wing is no longer competitive, but we are now at the point where every single vanilla generic ship in the game is no longer competitive, including the previous benchmark TIE Fighters and Z-95s which are no longer useful for anything other 12 points of leftover filler. People point to the lack of mass TLT squads dominating tournaments as evidence that TLT is not overpowered, but that's not the point. (Although notably there were 3-6 such squads in Worlds 2015 Top 32 depending on your criteria, so it is clearly not a low-skill phenomenon.)

 

Looking at only pure TLT squads is a poor comparison, because there are no other generic ships in the game that taken exclusively in a 100 point squad would make for a consistently competitive list, with the exception of the 8-TIE Swarm, and possibly the 8 Z-95 swarm. The fact that quad TLT still is still placing highly in current tournaments now, is direct evidence that TLT is enabling Y-wings to do something that no other generic ship in the history of the game has been able to consistently do.

 

Power creep is defined as when a new unit or upgrade renders a previously competitive unit or upgrade non-competitive. TLT at 6 points has rendered vanilla (0 upgrades) generics obsolete. Therefore TLT at 6 points is power creep. FFG is left with a few options:

  1. Head in the sand: do nothing.
  2. Capitulate: Change the TLT by errata, either mechanically or by point cost.
  3. Try something new: add a new mechanic / ship / upgrade / or something else that naturally preys on TLT.
  4. Fight fire with fire: don't change TLT, but instead do something to try make generic ships without any current upgrades better. In other worlds, fight TLT power creep with generic ship power creep.

 

In executing anything other than #1, FFG needs to be careful that the cure is not worse than the poison, and in principle Alex seems very aware of this. In practice, if they continue to have difficulty predicting the effectiveness of new ships and upgrades during the design phase, then they will inevitably end up accidentally releasing something new that pushes the previous boundaries of the power curve as Whisper and TLT have. I was hopeful that X-wing would largely avoid power creep, but I have accepted that the game will inevitably progress in a cycle of never-ending gradual power creep. It will likely be the reason that I eventually stop playing.

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Lets try this again, sorry we lost power in the middle of my post.   Phones and everything.   It's better now.

 

My Suggestion:

 

TLT Fix:

Attacks with this weapon do not count as secondary.     This way they still hit low agility ships, but are slightly less effective, since they don't cancel that range 3 bonus defense die.    Still great, but now actually worth the 6 points, instead of being under-costed.   

Edited by eagletsi111

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So I guess general consensus is TLT isn't necessarily competitively overpowered like the Phantom, just more effective than other options, so doesn't necessarily require a nerf more so than the other generic filler ships need a buff?

Here's the thing, TLT's are good but not great. Mass TLT's (3 and 4 ship variants) have won some GSC's. Far more often a mass TLT list will either not make the cut or make the cut but then fizzle out before the finals.

TLT's have weaknesses that can be exploited. In my own personal opinion much of the concern over TLT swarms comes out of local meta's that aren't developed as much as others. In some of those arenas where not enough people have figured out how to beat them it gives a false impression that they are overpowered.

Again, that's not to say TLT's aren't good. They are good. And for 6 points a pop they should be. It's a far cry from the Phantom issue that was developing and would have gotten worse. The nice thing about the Phantom errata was that it left the ship in a good place. Still extremely powerful but with a little more vulnerability. And many people would also tell you that the Phantom rule change also helped out the low pilot skill versions of that ship as well.

TLT isn't going to get out of hand. If anything Worlds and the GSC's have simply confirmed they are not overpowered.

I endorse this post in its entirety. I've come around to the idea that TLT is a point too cheap, but that's probably not enough for FFG to take the unusual step of errata.

 

 

Right, so instead what we're going to get is another half dozen cards that bring ships that are weak to TLT back up to the level where they can compete.    

 

Though, maybe really accurate missiles could do the trick.

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Granting defenders the range 3 bonus when attacked outside of the attackers firing arc would be the best way to tone down the TLT.

 

I think that would make the ships that are already strong against TLT almost too strong.

 

 

The benefits for the game would be much greater then the downsides.

Which one would you make 'too strong'? The only one that comes to my mind is Soontir. And Soontir is very unforgiving once he got blocked or double stressed.

 

 

Poe is the one that immediately comes to mind. StarVipers and Phantoms with Sensor Jammers also become stupid hard to hit.

 

 

For TLT only builds, yes.

 

 

48-50 Points of ships should pose a threat to 30-40 points of aces. If TLTs can manage their range to get shots on aces then they should be able to expect to get some damage through at least some of the time.

 

As it is Soontir or Poe could probably beat a pair Thugs with Unhinged Astromechs 7 out of 10 times. That's at least as big of a problem as TLTs are.

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It was 86 points.  The only games I lost in the SCs I went to (one of which had 40+ players, another had 30+, and the last 20+) it lost to ANOTHER VERSION OF ITSELF.  The other people playing the list won the SC, or were defeated by another copy of the same list.  If I remember correctly between 3 different players flying the list at 3 large SCs it only lost 2 games TOTAL to all other lists combined, and both of those were to classic PS 11 Fat Han lists that were designed entirely around beating Phantoms.

 

Pre-Nerf Phantoms were completely broken.  Having one or two TLTs show up in top lists now has far more to do with the fact that a significant number of ships rely on a turret upgrade to function at ALL (especially HWKs, but Y-Wings for certain and K Wings most of the time) and the TLT is the only turret upgrade that is generally useful.  If the Blaster Turret didn't require a focus to fire, or the Ion Cannon Turret didn't have a damage cap, you would be seeing a decent variety of upgrades in that slot.  But until we see some generally useful competition in that slot TLT will be the default choice.

In the meantime, we see an enormous variety of OTHER ships on the table.  People are winning with everything up to and including T-65s.  Shuttles, Aces, generics, large bases, enormous swathes of the field are viable now and are having success and people STILL complain because those ships that need turret upgrades to work use the only turret upgrade that works.

Folks will complain about anything.

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TLT was in nearly every rebel and scum list in the top 8.

 

2015 X-wing Champion

I love it when someone makes a claim like that and is proven wrong 2 or 3 posts later.

Out of the top 8 there were 6 Rebel or S&V lists, and out of the 6 of them 2 had more than one TLT, and the 3rd had 1. There is simply no way to argue that half means 'nearly every'.

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Lets try this again, sorry we lost power in the middle of my post.   Phones and everything.   It's better now.

 

My Suggestion:

 

TLT Fix:

Attacks with this weapon do not count as secondary.     This way they still hit low agility ships, but are slightly less effective, since they don't cancel that range 3 bonus defense die.    Still great, but now actually worth the 6 points, instead of being under-costed.   

 

 

I think this is a good idea. Its not a huge nerf, but its still a nerf. 1 agility ships will still be fodder, but it gives 2 agility ships a fighting chance.

 

Alternatively, a possible nerf would be disabling a ships primary weapon with an equipped TLT. That gives the TLT equipped ship a true donut hole. The Y-wing has a crescent and the K-wing doesn't have one at all.

 

Out of the current Store Championships top 4, what percentage of Rebel lists do not have a single TLT?

Edited by Jo Jo

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Some guys here act like somebody is about to take away their favourite dingedidong.

 

If it happens that a specific upgrade is the *only useful* upgrade out of an array of possible upgrades - you can consider this 'only useful' upgrade to be broken - and NOT the other possible ubgrades.

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In the meantime, we see an enormous variety of OTHER ships on the table. People are winning with everything up to and including T-65s. Shuttles, Aces, generics, large bases, enormous swathes of the field are viable now and are having success and people STILL complain because those ships that need turret upgrades to work use the only turret upgrade that works.

Folks will complain about anything.

If you're referring to Store Champs results, could it be gap in player skill in some areas?

In our area we have a more skilled player base that run strong meta lists, so you hardly get to see any of this "diversity". Last store champs I attended had 3 Palp Aces and 1 Dash/Corran in top 4.

Edited by VaynMaanen

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  • TLTs have rendered all vanilla generic ships obsolete. There is still the roughly 50-50 split of generic vs named pilots, but virtually all of the generic pilots are now carrying TLT, Crackshot, or Palpatine, which are all wave ~7 upgrades. Generics are now in net less cost effective than TLT Y-wings, so naturally the meta has been flooded by Y-wings and TLT.

To be frank, this was kind of inevitable as they tried to bring non-generics back into the fold. As someone who remembers when you never took unique pilots, I am not too concerned with generics needing a little something extra to compete with their unique counterparts.

 

 

Power creep is defined as when a new unit or upgrade renders a previously competitive unit or upgrade non-competitive. TLT at 6 points has rendered vanilla (0 upgrades) generics obsolete. Therefore TLT at 6 points is power creep.

It also depends on what you consider viable. Different people have different opinions on what is viable. I mean, the top tier squad is important. But, I maintain that the lower level tournaments is a more important factor into the health and balance of the game. Sure, that isn't the "perfect balance" many people chase, but it is also the most realistic, and best, outcome one can get from a game of this nature.

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In the meantime, we see an enormous variety of OTHER ships on the table. People are winning with everything up to and including T-65s. Shuttles, Aces, generics, large bases, enormous swathes of the field are viable now and are having success and people STILL complain because those ships that need turret upgrades to work use the only turret upgrade that works.

Folks will complain about anything.

If you're referring to Store Champs results, could it be gap in player skill in some areas?

In our area we have a more skilled player base that run strong meta lists, so you hardly get to see any of this "diversity". Last store champs I attended had 3 Palp Aces and 1 Dash/Corran in top 4.

Store Championships isn't a great measure of the top tier. These are smaller, more local, tournaments. So you will get some local flavor in the results. Still, it is a better measure of the balance of the game. Because if you have Store Champs pretty much following the major tournament results, there may be some balance issues. The tier 1.5 and 2 stuff is a greater indication of balance.

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the limitations already in place on the TLT are it's countermeasures, a TLT leaves you with the donut of dead like the Dash builds do, also, UNLIKE the dash build it has a second limitation, 2 damage AT BEST.

 

I have also noticed that (for the most part) only lower agility ships carry the turret, and most of their movement dials are, shall we say, less than desirable. This gives those ships a viable weapon to use against ANY arc dodgers, and keeps it well within a limited bounds of the game to make it playable.

 

Is it powerful, hell yes it is! but the question is, should it be nerfed? Absolutely not.

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the limitations already in place on the TLT are it's countermeasures, a TLT leaves you with the donut of dead like the Dash builds do, also, UNLIKE the dash build it has a second limitation, 2 damage AT BEST.

 

I have also noticed that (for the most part) only lower agility ships carry the turret, and most of their movement dials are, shall we say, less than desirable. This gives those ships a viable weapon to use against ANY arc dodgers, and keeps it well within a limited bounds of the game to make it playable.

 

Is it powerful, hell yes it is! but the question is, should it be nerfed? Absolutely not.

 

 

What donut does the K-wing have? It still has a 3 dice primary turret at range 1. Even the Y-wings donut hole isn't a massive area like Dash's. Also, a Y-wing with Unhinged has a pretty good dial for something with a 360 turret.

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Not sure how they're going to errata TLT. It does one thing and one thing only and there's no way of changing it without effectively ruining it.

I can only think of rewording the title to the limitations set by the Defender title and add a max cost to the turret you may use, thereby nerfing the stresshog by reducing its range band.

I think the stress hog least of all needs a nerf. Every squad you'll face currently has 1 or 2 indestructible, hyper action economy Acewing ships in it and the stress hog is something that can actually deal with those. Please no.

Oh, I fully agree with you there. It needs no nerfing. I was just thinking out loud how to nerf it without completely destroying it, in line with the current upgrade language.

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I've played in 3 tournaments in the last 6 weeks or so ( my first 3, yea). My anecdotal evidence indicates TLT's are not in need of the nerf bat. They were 14, 24, and 21 people. While I don't have all of the lists available to me I believe there was just one list of 4 Y TLT's in each of my 2nd and 3rd tournaments and none in the first. There were lists such as mine, which I'll give below, that utilized TLT's, but they were just a component of that list, not what defined it. In the 12 games of those tournaments I faced TLT's once. My 4th game in the 2nd tourney I faced a 4 Y TLT list and lost a close one because I flew poorly, not because the list was overwhelmingly superior.

In 2 of the tourneys I flew the following.

Poe: VI, R2D2, and Autothrusters.

Miranda: TLT and Tactician.

2x Bandit.

99 points.

The TLT on Miranda was hardly the focus of the list, it was just one element of it. I would say the focus is regenerating aces. From my personal experiences, it seems that TLT is just an effective tool in the rebel and scum toolboxes, not the only tool. Sorry Imps, none for you though.

Edited by Starbane

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I get frustrated with TLT but I don't think it needs nerfed. The thing that I think is really tough is the K-Wings with TLT. The Y-Wings can be dealt with via getting inside the "donut hole", but K-Wing has 3 primary at range 1. While it is only 1 roll, it is still tough and doesn't offer many options in dealing with it. When I encounter a TLT heavy list, I just try to avoid putting myself in R3 and then book it into R1. Focus fire the TLTs one at a time and hope they die. R1 Poe against a 1 agility K is pretty favorable.

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I've been playing customizable games for a long time. I've learned the warning signs of an overpowered option.

 

Twin laser turrets are setting off alarms*. It's power creep.

 

The solution is simple. Just erratta the cost higher. The design is kind of shaky because it removes a lot of the fun of the dice rolling, but that's not the problem. It's unfun enough that casual players drift away from it, but not so much that people refuse to play against it. The power level is the issue. It's undercosted. Point cost erratta won't be hard to remember because it only applies during squad building.

 

*Some alarms I have noticed through experience: When the card is previewed, the general first impression is that it is amazingly powerful and this impression doesn't go away after people play with it. It shows up everywhere in the strongest tournament lists. It shows up everywhere soon after release, and as time goes on, becomes more and more common until it's always in every list. People discuss whether it's too strong over and over again, with some people arguing it's too strong, and other people arguing it's strong but that's okay because people can just play something specifically designed to be strong against it and/or learn complex techniques to play around it. A small minority of people who use it a lot and win argue that it's perfectly balanced don't ban my list! Nobody thinks that it's weak.

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Juggler highlighted it, but while TLTs are one factor pushing out vanilla generics, I think things like Crack Shot are just as guilty and don't get nearly enough press. The cheapest Crackshot carrier is only 15 points and PS4. Thanks to Crackshot, 4-5 PS4 TIE Fighters stand a very good shot at completely destroying a PS2 B-Wing or several TIEs before they even get a chance to shoot. Paired with cards like Predator that are specifically designed to hunt low-PS ships, and it's just too dangerous to consider any low-PS pilots unless they bring something really good to the table.

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Couple things

1. Old phantoms were something you had to answer in the list building phase. If you didn't bring anything that could deal with them like ps9-12 or turrets you were pretty SOL because blocking them was hard to do. It really was a huge pillar of the 2014 meta that had to be answered.

Now though we have 2 major defining pillars. Tlt's and aces. Normally this wouldn't be a problem because to address it you would build against it. But these 2 lists are the complete opposite of each other and require 2 different play styles to beat. Usually your great ace killer list is susceptible to tlt's and your tlt killer usually gets torn up by aces. Though some lists can do both like mine ;) lol so that's where I feel people are having there problems.

Bottom line is this, people love x wing and the meta when it's in there favor and there winning. People hate the meta and say it's broken and unfun when they're losing, paragoomba completely embodies this. Just play the game and find what works. I don't like mass tlt's I don't think they're fun to play or against so I don't run them but I practice against them to be able to compete and beat them. Same for high ps aces.

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Therefore TLT at 6 points is power creep. FFG is left with a few options:

  • Head in the sand: do nothing.
  • Capitulate: Change the TLT by errata, either mechanically or by point cost.
  • Try something new: add a new mechanic / ship / upgrade / or something else that naturally preys on TLT.
  • Fight fire with fire: don't change TLT, but instead do something to try make generic ships without any current upgrades better. In other worlds, fight TLT power creep with generic ship power creep.
 

I doubt they'll do #1 over the long term. I actually think #2 is the most elegant solution, but they've shown substantial reluctance to issue errata in the past, and they've never changed the point cost of an upgrade. And I doubt they'll do #4, because they're surely aware that the solution to power creep is not to average everything else up to match a powerful game element.

That leaves "something new". We already know ordnance is getting a free (well, 0-point) boost in Wave 8, and I strongly suspect that will affect the viability of low-PS ships with poor to moderate maneuverability. I don't know if it will be enough to bring back non-TLT generic ships--it seems as if most of the ships that like Guidance Chips have a named pilot that's a much better fit for firing missiles or torpedoes than the generics are. But if I were FFG, I'd wait for Wave 8 to settle out before I played around with TLT balance.

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The solution is simple. Just erratta the cost higher.

That's not an option, FFG will not errata the price of a upgrade or unit. The most they'll do is offer a discount of some sort ala the refit, or limit things ala Defender title.

Myself I wish they'd be more willing to do that, but they've made their stance on that quite clear.

Edited by VanorDM

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the limitations already in place on the TLT are it's countermeasures, a TLT leaves you with the donut of dead like the Dash builds do, also, UNLIKE the dash build it has a second limitation, 2 damage AT BEST.

 

I have also noticed that (for the most part) only lower agility ships carry the turret, and most of their movement dials are, shall we say, less than desirable. This gives those ships a viable weapon to use against ANY arc dodgers, and keeps it well within a limited bounds of the game to make it playable.

 

Is it powerful, hell yes it is! but the question is, should it be nerfed? Absolutely not.

 

 

What donut does the K-wing have? It still has a 3 dice primary turret at range 1. Even the Y-wings donut hole isn't a massive area like Dash's. Also, a Y-wing with Unhinged has a pretty good dial for something with a 360 turret.

 

I am not justifying the ship that the TLT itself can be attached to, the turret itself has limitations as I discussed above, If you want to get into a K/Y-wing talk with me, I can do that too, but this thread isn't about that....

 

Back on topic, I fully stand by my earlier assessment of the TLT

Edited by Seamus013

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