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Redavhtrad

How do I fly against swarms??

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They were naked z95s. I knew to not joust them so I tried to pull them through the asterlid field. They just stayed on their side of the board flying horizontally and k turning. I tried flanking but I couldn't get the right angle. He took out one of my ships a turn the first 2 rounds of shooting with naked z95s.

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They were naked z95s. I knew to not joust them so I tried to pull them through the asterlid field. They just stayed on their side of the board flying horizontally and k turning. I tried flanking but I couldn't get the right angle. He took out one of my ships a turn the first 2 rounds of shooting with naked z95s.

8 Zs, ehh?

​Well, there's a few things going for you in this match-up.

​Primarily, you'll want to practice Range Control. Swarms prefer fighting at Range 1, as they get far more red dice from the occasion, whereas Range 3 fetches you more green dice than they get.

Similarly, any instance where you're moving into range from out of it prevents them from being able to use their Target Locks, so there's that.

 

 

Meanwhile, your list ought to have performed fairly well. They have a lot of attacks, aye, but your ships should have high amounts of mitigation (the ability to cancel damage). I saw that you were trying to flank them, but how were your attempts of arc-dodging, blitzkrieg, or disengagement?

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They just stayed on their side of the board flying horizontally and k turning. 

 

Reply in kind. Stay on your side of the table and wait for him to blink. No matter what he does from there, you have the advantage; if he blinks and comes after you, he has to do so through the rocks where you can outmaneuver him. If he doesn't blink, then once time begins to run down you've got the firepower to assassinate one of his ships and the damage mitigation to survive afterwards.

 

Don't ever play the game on your opponent's terms, especially not in that kind of matchup.

Edited by DR4CO

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I suppose I should have waited for him to come for me through the asteroids. He rolled really well and I turned enough blanks so that disengagement meant taking my ships off the board. Thanks for the advice. I probably just had poor luck alongside inexperience and poor flying. I never thought I'd be 100-0'd by an 8 ship swarm..

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Yeah. I tried to do just that but he predicted my engagement and took a hard 2 rather than k turning. A dead vader later I was screwed. I think it was just a case of flying against a phenomenal pilot. I have another store championship in two weeks so I'll hopefully redeem myself there. I was 2-1 going into that ga me and I hadn't lost a ship in 2 rounds so it sucked losing that horribly

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Agreed. Kudos to the player - going undefeated with a swarm means holding a fantastically complex mental picture game after game....

 

At the same time, yeah. Swarms will generally try and avoid coming out to meet you - because they have to set up first. Z-95s can do this better than TIE fighters because they have a '1' straight. The trick is to avoid charging at them - hold back yourself and only 'go in' once he's committed to an attack - if necessary, send one ace in, then hard turn and boost away if he turns the pack to face them.

 

As ever, try to draw them into the rocks and break up the swarm, try to engage first from range 3.

One thing which might work is to set up facing an angle that's not 45' - if you can find yourself coming in at odd angles, it means it's more mental work for him to track it all.

 

Consider splitting up your own squad - that way if he wants to concentrate on one guy, he lets the other get around his flank.

 

Ultimately, a really well flown Z-95 swarm - and if a guy can be undefeated in a store championship anyone has to concede it's "really well flown" - is a right bugger to face. You can deal with aces by blocking them and mobbing them, kill big ships with massed 2-dice attacks and the benefit of Target Lock, and cut apart a TIE swarm (the closest comparison) if you fly it right because you have a pilot skill advantage to shoot first and a straight '1' which often lets you fly better in a joust.

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First and foremost remember that there is no shame in losing to a well flown swarm of any type at the hands of a very skilled player. Those lists are not easy to fly even if they make it look that way. From the standpoint of the skilled swarm player they are going to go into each match believing they have a strong chance to win against literally any other list they face. There will be games where no matter what you do, you will lose. Conversely, the swarm player can (and probably will) have at least one match where their dice suddenly go completely dead cold.

Over the course of a tournament those lists can be exhausting to run for that many consecutive games. Make them work for it. Have a good asteroid placement and deployment strategy. Try and force them to come through the rocks in a less than optimum position. Try to force engagement on your terms. Then pray to the dice gods. Sometimes that's the only thing that can save you.

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Do not underestimate the power of the dark side... of asteroid placement.  No really, I'm serious.

 

Imperial Aces are all fine and good, but if they get stuck in an asteroid field where they cannot arc dodge then things can get ugly because:

 

A - They cannot arc dodge, which makes it much easier for the swarm (or TLT) player to focus fire (and hopefully disable autothrusters)

B - The next round, if the swarm fills every nook and cranny of the flight path then you'll end up bumping and tokenless against a bunch of ships at range 1 with focuses.  That is a losing proposition any way that you look at it.

 

My advice is therefore:

 

1 - Avoid creating a dense asteroid field on the opponent's side of the map

2 - You can do that by placing the 2 biggest asteroids in your corners.  That will net you a bit more breathing room.

 

That's all I can think of without having seen the game.

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Hit and run is absolutely your friend here until you can start thinning the herd. If you stay in the engagement, you'll just make it easier for your opponent block you. If your opponent can line up several focused R1-2 shots against an actionless ace, that ship will probably die.

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