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Derpzilla88

CC Advice Needed: Fighting the Swarm

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So here's the setup. One of our Imperial players in our local Corellian Conflict campaign has a pretty strong fighter-focused fleet that we Rebel players are having difficulty fighting against and I'm curious what insight the community might have on general strategies for fighting this type of a fleet. It's quickly proven to be a worthy thorn in the side of the Rebellion.

*As a note, in our Corellian Conflict we made a house rule that all ships can only have one upgrade and a title. We wanted to test this house rule out to see how it played out and to keep a lot of the combo shenanigans out of our casual CC campaign.*

Tarkin's Swarm
Objectives: Advanced Gunnery, Contested Outpost, Superior Positions
Imperial II-class Star Destroyer
 - Grand Moff Tarkin
 - Reinforced Blast Doors

Imperial II-class Star Destroyer
 - Reinforced Blast Doors

Gozanti-class Cruiser

Soontir Fel
Ciana Ree
Howlrunner
Mauler Mithel
Valen Rudor
3x TIE Advanced
6x TIE Fighter

 

The problem is I don't know what to focus on when fighting this fleet. Do I put more focus on taking down the squadrons with mine? I could use squadron commands to try and keep even with theirs (hopefully the bulk of Rebel squadron health can pull through), but I don't see myself winning that battle. I feel resigned to just accept that I'm going to lose all my squadrons in this fight.
Or should I concentrate everything on the enemy ships? Three ships are pretty easy to out-activate so I can really focus fire on them. But two ISD-II's with Reinforced Blast Doors take a lot of fire to take down. All while the fighters are tearing through my fighter squadrons and potentially taking down my capital ships by "death of a thousand cuts".

I just don't know how to approach going up against this fleet without losing most, if not all, of my own fleet. I have a few ideas on how to fight it but I'd like to know some theoretical ideas/general strategies of how best o take on a fleet with this huge a presence on the board.

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The vast majority of his fighter force is 3 HP....  Ciena, Soontir, Mauler, Rudor, 6 TIEs.  If you overlap your fields of anti-squadron fire, they'll get 2 turns at best to actually do anything to you, before they're reduced to like, Ciena Ree and the 3 Advanced...   

The rest of the game is "Drop One ISD.  Don't Die."

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Ten Nunb backed by Toryn would be hilariously effective against this. 

 

In all seriousness, Awings and other high speed anti-squad squads. You need to alpha strike and knock out several squads around the advanceds. They are banking entirely on alpha striking with this kind of swarm. 

 

Counter intuitive, but kill all the generics first. Yeah, Valen hits hard. The effort you'll spend to kill him will probably net you two TIE Fighters that hit harder together than him solo. Same goes for Mauler, Cienna, etc. 

 

As was mentioned: Flak. Swing that MC80 Assault around and pump some double black at that screen. A pair of transports would do a real number here as well. 

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Ten Numb + Toryn Far + Adar + Escort Yavaris flakking with 2 blues should do it. Thats 3 bursts and cleanup damage. Then turn on the naked ISD's.

Also not sure I understand house ruling the limit to one upgrade and a title per ship. The most shenanignany of shenanigans are on the titles. Seems counter intuitive to limit ship effectiveness like that, but not really get rid of rule breaking titles. Also makes squadrons too strong, leading to lists like this.

Edited by BrobaFett

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  1. Ship counter: Lots of flotillas to fire black anti-squad dice at his very low hull squads, or ships with 2 anti-squad dice, such as Nebulon-B Escort Frigates
  2. If you want to fight fire with fire (squadron vs squadron), this will do it this. You shouldn't lose more than a squad or 2:
  • Toryn Farr
  • Squadrons:
    • Ten Numb
    • Biggs
    • As many YT1300s as you can afford

 

 

Edited by Thraug

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37 minutes ago, Drasnighta said:

The vast majority of his fighter force is 3 HP....  Ciena, Soontir, Mauler, Rudor, 6 TIEs.  If you overlap your fields of anti-squadron fire, they'll get 2 turns at best to actually do anything to you, before they're reduced to like, Ciena Ree and the 3 Advanced...   

The rest of the game is "Drop One ISD.  Don't Die."

I'll definitely see what I can do about overlapping AA fire if I go up against the fleet again. The only problem with that strategy is that the player using the fleet keeps his fighters close to his ISD's and moves everything together as a group so his whole fleet can strike together and defend each other. If I'm using AA fire on the fighters, I'm not keeping those Star Destroyers at bay.

35 minutes ago, Ardaedhel said:

Ten Nunb.

Hindsight is 20/20 and I regret not taking Ten Numb. My fleet is full now and I can't fit anymore fighters into it, but maybe one of the other Rebel players can.

28 minutes ago, BrobaFett said:

Also not sure I understand house ruling the limit to one upgrade and a title per ship. The most shenanignany of shenanigans are on the titles. Seems counter intuitive to limit ship effectiveness like that, but not really get rid of rule breaking titles. Also makes squadrons too strong, leading to lists like this.

The "one upgrade + one title" per ship house rule was just a test to see how we liked it. They wanted to keep it very casual and more on the vanilla side of Armada. I agreed with it because I thought it'd be fun too. It has been, but I have found that one upgrade per ship does limit things more than I thought and we run into fleets that are very tough to beat, as you pointed out.

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Just now, Derpzilla88 said:

 

Hindsight is 20/20 and I regret not taking Ten Numb. My fleet is full now and I can't fit anymore fighters into it, but maybe one of the other Rebel players can.

 

Fly a scarred fighter off the board and replace. Unless he is taken.

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9 minutes ago, Xeletor said:

Or fly your squadrons away so he doesnt get points for them and hope all the blue squadron dice dont do enough damage to your ships to matter?

14 blue dice each with a 50-50 chance to do damage on a ship is still very dangerous.

5 minutes ago, BrobaFett said:

Fly a scarred fighter off the board and replace. Unless he is taken.

Not a bad idea. My fleet has Biggs, Shara Bey, three X-Wings, and two A-Wings to make up it's squadrons. But my fleet is at the full unscarred 500 points (I still don't know how I managed that. No small amount of luck, that's for sure), so I'd have to see what I'm willing to lose permanently to get Ten Numb on in.

Might not have a chance to do that anyways. Rebels and Imperials are tied at 7 victory points each and the Imperials have made it pretty clear they intend to declare Final Assault once someone gets to 8 victory points.

Edited by Derpzilla88

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4 minutes ago, Derpzilla88 said:

I'll definitely see what I can do about overlapping AA fire if I go up against the fleet again. The only problem with that strategy is that the player using the fleet keeps his fighters close to his ISD's and moves everything together as a group so his whole fleet can strike together and defend each other. If I'm using AA fire on the fighters, I'm not keeping those Star Destroyers at bay.

Hindsight is 20/20 and I regret not taking Ten Numb. My fleet is full now and I can't fit anymore fighters into it, but maybe one of the other Rebel players can.

The "one upgrade + one title" per ship house rule was just a test to see how we liked it. They wanted to keep it very casual and more on the vanilla side of Armada. I agreed with it because I thought it'd be fun too. It has been, but I have found that one upgrade per ship does limit things more than I thought and we run into fleets that are very tough to beat, as you pointed out.

Oh,I missed that you were already capped.

What does your fleet look like? Looks to me like the imp fleet is very heavily antisquadron invested, meaning your best bet is a ship-heavy response. Do you have a rebel player with something like an MC30 or TRC90 swarm, or maybe a dual-Liberty list that could handle it?

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Just now, Ardaedhel said:

Oh,I missed that you were already capped.

What does your fleet look like? Looks to me like the imp fleet is very heavily antisquadron invested, meaning your best bet is a ship-heavy response. Do you have a rebel player with something like an MC30 or TRC90 swarm, or maybe a dual-Liberty list that could handle it?

I hadn't mentioned that my fleet was already capped because I wasn't sure how relevant it would be.
My fleet consists of:

MC80 Assault Cruiser
 - Admiral Ackbar
 - Electronic Countermeasures
 - Home One

Assault Frigate Mk-II B
 - Electronic Countermeasures

MC30 Torpedo Frigate
 - H9 Turbolasers

CR90-A
 - Turbolaser Reroute Circuits

GR-75 Transports
 - Flight Commander

Biggs Darklighter
Shara Bey
3x X-Wings
2x A-Wings

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11 minutes ago, BrobaFett said:

Looks like it's moot. All out assault next turn anyway. I guess this thread is at least good for future proofing if anyone encounters a similar threat.

Maybe a bit moot for this CC session, but good knowledge and advice I'm happy to see anyways. And it sounds like the majority of the group I'm with would like to do the "one upgrade + title" again for the next CC campaign even though I'd like to go back to normal rules. One player is already heavily hinting at doing a massive TIE swarm for his future fleet, so it's good to have an idea of how to best deal with that should it happen.

Edited by Derpzilla88

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I was gonna rage about squadrons... but that fleet looks like garbage lol.  

Its a huge ball of AA!  Just drop all of your fighters lol.  Just kill fighters all game and avoid dying to the ISD.  Exactly.  Out activation him, he's got 3 activations and no bombers ffs.  

Sorry, I'm being snarky, but I mean no offense. =)

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12 minutes ago, Blail Blerg said:

I was gonna rage about squadrons... but that fleet looks like garbage lol.  

Its a huge ball of AA!  Just drop all of your fighters lol.  Just kill fighters all game and avoid dying to the ISD.  Exactly.  Out activation him, he's got 3 activations and no bombers ffs.  

Sorry, I'm being snarky, but I mean no offense. =)

It's a casual CC campaign. ALL our fleets are probably garbage.

AA is the clear first solution to try and deal with it. The problem I'm having is that the player using this fleet keeps his squadrons in close with his star destroyers as they move in towards my fleet. By the time I can start shooting AA, the star destroyers are already on my fleet with those front arcs. I'm just not sure if I should focus on the ISDs, or take the ISD fire and focus on that AA fire on the fighters. My Rebel ships aren't all that tough and will go down quick with that ISD front arc fire. So I might not get rid of enough of his fighter squadrons before I'm losing ships that are going to easily equalize the points in his fighters lost.

Also, with my fleet, I only have one ship with two blue AA dice. The rest only have a single blue AA dice.

Edited by Derpzilla88

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You're list is no match. ISDs can survive off of 1 upgrade. Rebels cannot. 

I can't think of any way you can position your squads so they come out alive. The ace ball with Tie/A is already difficult, but the additional 6 Tie/F makes it worse. 

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5 minutes ago, Undeadguy said:

Your list is no match. ISDs can survive off of 1 upgrade. Rebels cannot. 

I think that should be my main argument to my local playgroup for why we should play CC the normal way next time. Honestly it's amazing that Rebels and Imperials are as tied in victory points in our campaign as they are.

Although things would probably be infinitely more one-sided if the Imperials had done a Show of Force mission even once.

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1 minute ago, Derpzilla88 said:

I think that should be my main argument to my local playgroup for why we should play CC the normal way next time. Honestly it's amazing that Rebels and Imperials are as tied in victory points in our campaign as they are.

Although things would probably be infinitely more one-sided if the Imperials had done a Show of Force mission even once.

The real issue is the MC30 and AF. CR90s and GR-75 can run 1 upgrade. But MC30s need OE and an Ordnance upgrade and a title if you want the most bang for your buck. And AF need dice mods in order to make their small batteries the most effective. Even DTT with Home One is good enough. MC80s need it the most IMO. The lack of GT really hurts.

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14 minutes ago, Undeadguy said:

The real issue is the MC30 and AF. CR90s and GR-75 can run 1 upgrade. But MC30s need OE and an Ordnance upgrade and a title if you want the most bang for your buck. And AF need dice mods in order to make their small batteries the most effective. Even DTT with Home One is good enough. MC80s need it the most IMO. The lack of GT really hurts.

As the campaign's been going on, the flaw of the one upgrade + title house rule is getting more and more apparent. Your post here helps put into words what I've been noticing when playing on the table.

Don't get me wrong though, we've been having a lot of fun with our CC campaign. Which is why I think it's going to be hard for me to convince my fellow Armada players to get rid of the house rule for the next campaign so everything can stay a little better balanced. They all seem to enjoy how it's been playing out. Probably because no one is intentionally abusing the limitation. This swarm fleet was made for fun, not to be as dangerous as it's ended up being.

Edited by Derpzilla88

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For my CC campaign, we compromised between just 1 upgrade and going all out.

We used the standard turn-1 limit of 1 upgrade.  Then on turn 2 each ship could have 2 upgrades maximum.  On turn 3 we allowed unlimited upgrades (though you could do another round with a 2-card limit if you like).  I didn't see the point of a 3-card limit, so it was either 2 upgrades or the full meal deal.

This has worked well for us as we're all beginners.  It kept things simple for the opening rounds as we slowly figured out our own combos while at the same time learning how the opposing team's cards worked.

EDIT:  We also started at 300 points instead of 400 which gave us more room to expand and react.  This also made the upgrade limit easier to implement as we had enough room to increase both our ships and/or squadrons and add more upgrades as the campaign went on.

Edited by Yipe

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47 minutes ago, Yipe said:

For my CC campaign, we compromised between just 1 upgrade and going all out.

We used the standard turn-1 limit of 1 upgrade.  Then on turn 2 each ship could have 2 upgrades maximum.  On turn 3 we allowed unlimited upgrades (though you could do another round with a 2-card limit if you like).  I didn't see the point of a 3-card limit, so it was either 2 upgrades or the full meal deal.

This has worked well for us as we're all beginners.  It kept things simple for the opening rounds as we slowly figured out our own combos while at the same time learning how the opposing team's cards worked.

EDIT:  We also started at 300 points instead of 400 which gave us more room to expand and react.  This also made the upgrade limit easier to implement as we had enough room to increase both our ships and/or squadrons and add more upgrades as the campaign went on.

Maybe I can convince them to give that a shot (though stay starting at 400). It still kinda runs along the same theme we're using now (minimal upgrades and a more vanilla Armada feel). Even just a second upgrade would be a huge help.

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