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FTS Gecko

The Illicit Cloaking Device - Thematically Improving Functionality

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OK, so everyone's aware of the Cloaking Device upgrade that came in the Mist Hunter expansion pack.  And a lot of people have been very "meh" on it, mainly due to the potential for it failing.

 

Let's take another look at the card:

 

CloakingDevice.png

 

So, at the end of the round, if you're cloaked, roll one attack dice.  On a Focus result, discard this card.  This RNG element has put a lot of people off using it, so how do we make it a more appealing option, while retaining the (appropriately Scummy) possibility of it failing?

 

A suggestion then:  how about allowing the owning player to spend a Focus token to modify the roll?

 

So - cloaked - you'd find yourself in situations where you're being shot at; do you spend your Focus token to modify your defense roll, or do you save your token to protect against Cloaking failure later in the round?

 

Some builds might find this much more advantageous than others;

 

• Guri, receiving a Focus token at range one

• Palob, stealing focus tokens from enemy ships

• Leechos, stealing focus tokens from friendly ships

• Pilots with Recon Specialist

• Pilots with Attani Mindlink

• Pilots accompanied by Manaroo

• Any HWK with the Moldy Crow title

 

Although I myself am perfectly happy with the Scum Cloaking Device as it stands, I'm aware that others have been underwhelmed by it.  And thematically speaking, spending a focus on maintaining your cloak can represent a pilot desperately trying to keep it operational.

 

Thoughts on the idea?  Suggestions?

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I like it - though some out there argue passionately that "at the end of the round" proceeds "the end phase" which would forfeit those focus tokens early.

 

I'm not in that camp though, this sounds great!

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I really wanted a modification slot upgrade ("Illicit Stockpile", or something like that) for 1pt which says something to the effect of "When you are instructed to discard an illicit upgrade, you may discard this card instead."

 

I think HotShot blaster with one use at 3pts is no bueno, but it might seem more reasonable at 4pts with two uses. Likewise, I think it'd be a stellar insurance policy for the cloaking device, but the trade-off would mean that it could no longer be used in conjunction with stygium particle accelerator. At least then you'd have an upgrade, and potentially a strategy, that you could rely upon.

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The main issue isn't the rng (though really rng can go suck a nut; we have more than enough just with red v green dice) but that the card would've been fine as just cloak (NO DRAWBACKS) for 2 points

It's not powerful enough to warrant a 2 point base + rng crap, esp given the other (more necessary) limitations of unique + small ship only

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I like the cloaking device. Only drawback, it shouldn't be unique. I looked forward to play 4 cloaked ships, but NOOO.

So right now I play it with PtL and Stygium, that provides you with a lot of tokens the turn after the device failed.

 

As far as your focus idea goes, the token would be removed before the roll for the device happens (which is a good thing, as the PtL/SA combo depends on that).

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So the proposal is effectively to allow a ship to "spend" its Focus token during the end phase (at the end of each round) to modify the cloak roll allowing it to avoid failure?  In the grand scheme of things it seems reasonable.

 

I don't recall but do any of the scum HWKs have illicits and thus could combine that with Modly Crow?  A pilot using his "Focus" to keep the cloaking device from failing completely is reasonable.

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So the proposal is effectively to allow a ship to "spend" its Focus token during the end phase (at the end of each round) to modify the cloak roll allowing it to avoid failure?  In the grand scheme of things it seems reasonable.

 

I don't recall but do any of the scum HWKs have illicits and thus could combine that with Modly Crow?  A pilot using his "Focus" to keep the cloaking device from failing completely is reasonable.

 

All scum hwks do - I know a local player who loves cloak on Palob.

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As far as your focus idea goes, the token would be removed before the roll for the device happens (which is a good thing, as the PtL/SA combo depends on that).

 

Agreed, there'd probably need to be an errata on the timing; i.e. have the test for Cloak failure at the end of the combat phase a la R5-P9, or at the start of the End phase as per Corran Horn.

Edited by FTS Gecko

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I don't think it's impossible.  Poe and his friend there save tokens til the end of the round for shield regen, so it's not impossible.  But the card is printed and without some kind of rule stating that you can keep and spend tokens until the end phase in some kind of window that happens at the very end after all other effects have triggered, then I just don't see how.

 

Plus this also opens up the door for more R4 Agromech abuse.  Didn't get to shoot your ordnance with deadeye?  Spend that token at the end of the round and grab TL.  Go into the next round with TL already up?  For free?  Heck no.

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It's fine as is. It guarantees 1 round of being turtled up with 2 more greens on a hwk that is storing those focus tokens anyways its amazing plus you get a 2 barrel roll. If it keeps working so much the better. Counter measures only increases your defense by 1 and you don't get a barrel roll. 

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If it has to have a chance to fail I would have preferred it to work like I originally thought that it read. 

 

"Action: Perform a free cloak action.

 
At the end of each round, if you are cloaked, roll 1 attack die. On a [EYEBALL] result you may either discard this card or decloak immediately"
 
It still makes the illicit more undependable than the native Cloak action but gives the player a little more agency over whether or not they lose the ability for the rest of the game.

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Local guy uses it on Guri to get him across the table in a flash. **** thing moves fast when he does that, usually turn2 hes within range1 of my board edge or **** close to it.

I think the main key to it is dont try to depend on it. Phantoms rely on it to survive, so if it broke for them they'd be hosed. Every time i have seen a scum use cloak and actually do well with it only cloaked 1 turn and abused the re-position to rocket across the board and/or strafe like a badass.

 

However from a card standpoint, i dont get why you have to discard it. What if it had an inverse effect akin more to limited use rather than potential turn 1 no upgrade? i.e. if cloaked roll a die, on a focus nothing happens but on a blank, hit, or crit remove 1 *insert random token name* from this card. Once all the tokens are removed, discard this card. Say 3-5 tokens, so you are guaranteed 3ish turns of use out of it but potentially more.

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Poor Illicit Cloaking Device.

Wish the FAQ would just scrub out the words "discard this card, then".

Its not the Forced Decloak part that people hate about this card, its the possibility to have the card lost for absolutely no value.

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Its already really good. I use it as a "panic button" on Palop when enemies are near. I like it as is, it feels very scummy. Your suggestion would Be a great pilot skill or ship specific title though.

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The purpose of the roll-to-fizzle check is to prevent the ships playing like Phantoms - cloaking up on Turn 1 and staying that way until it's time to do some shooting. Essentially it's an RNG-enforced time limit.

 

With that said, I do feel that the RNG-timer is perhaps a little too harsh. A potential 'fix' would be but a single comma moved (emphasis mine):

 

Current: "At the end of each round, if you are cloaked, roll 1 attack die. On a [focus] result, discard this card, then decloak or discard your cloak token."

 

Proposed: "At the end of each round, if you are cloaked, roll 1 attack die. On a [focus] result, discard this card then decloak, or discard your cloak token."

 

So it either burns out in one last leap of glory... or it simply stalls, demanding you restart it again next round.

 

Why would you ever let it burn out? Because some days, you need that extra leg of movement more than you need the Cloaking device again.

Edited by Reiver

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...

Plus this also opens up the door for more R4 Agromech abuse.  Didn't get to shoot your ordnance with deadeye?  Spend that token at the end of the round and grab TL.  Go into the next round with TL already up?  For free?  Heck no.

Except the agromech says "When attacking, after you spend a focus token, you may acquire a target lock on the defender." So it won't trigger off of spending focus on defense or other times, so no abuse there.

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Change the roll to 'when you decloak, roll a die to see if it breaks' then you're guaranteed a successful cloak and a successful decloak.

 

It would have been far better for it have been a one-use cloak-decloak-discard for me than its current iteration which is basically impossible to use, IMO, in high-level play because you just can't rely on it.

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its a fun card.... add juke and Stygium Particle Accelerator just to annoy the crap out of people.

Then you cloak on the approach, it craps out before you engage, and does nothing.  I've been there, several times, that's why I don't use it any more.

 

It is fun, but spending 6 points on something that has a 1/4 chance of breaking every round you use it is just not worth it - Juke is a terrible idea unless you have the Evade action natively, which only the Mist Hunter does that can actually take it.

 

I love the idea of the card, I really do enjoy it, but I just don't think there's a way to make it worth the cost, both in points and/or in not taking something better like Glitterstim or Feedback Array in the same slot.

 

Making it possible to rely on it at least once would have helped a great deal.

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Since it is unique and small ship only, they could have been a little more generous... I like the RNG element feels scummy, and prevents you from turteling up with e.g. Guri forever/until Late game. But, it is no avanced cloacking device so the moment you cloak you miss you opportunity to deal damage...thus no need IHMO to discard the device. Failing the end-game test, requires you to decloack at that point and telegraph your position going into the next round, which is one of the advantages of cloak, and should perhaps simply also prevent you from cloaking in the subsequent round.

Edited by Sciencius

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