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Flotilla Phase?

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I know that there was a big thread about maybe bringing the pass rule to armada.

I was just at a store tournament and I kind of felt the reason for this as the guy had 6 activations 4 of which were flotillas.  He had a couple of flotilla just for activations which he admitted.  This started to make me think of the pass rule some more and an idea came to my head that might not have been brought up on the other thread.

What about adding a Flotilla Phase between the Ship and the Squadron Phase?  I think that will make it so that people are not taking a ton of Flotillas just for the activations because then the bigger ships can take them out wasting the activation etc.  Yet they can still be activate squadrons, provide benefits like the bomber command center etc.  

thoughts? 

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It's been proposed numerous times before and it creates as many problems as it "solves." The first that comes to mind is the fact that if I had 4 flotillas just sitting around commanding squadrons all together at the end of the regular ship phase, I effectively get 8+ squadron activations while the other player just watches and can't do anything. That's pretty strong.

Plus activation padding is generally strongest before turn 3. I've run a 7 activation fleet (just won a store champ with it two weeks back), 2 of which are flotillas, and the activation advantage alone come turn 3 isn't nearly as powerful as it is turns 1 and 2. People tend to fixate on how good it is early and then conveniently forget how mediocre it is later (with some exceptions). If most of those activations are actually combat ships, then it works out fine (...usually). If most of them are empty activations, then you're going to run into trouble against a player of equal or greater skill.

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44 minutes ago, Snipafist said:

Plus activation padding is generally strongest before turn 3.

This. I just played a 6 activation doom Pickle list and was commenting it was funny my 3 flotillas were the first things activated turns one and two, and the last things activated in each subsequent turn haha

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Breaking the game up into different phases or allowing an upgrade as a pass activation will not fix the issue. The problem is activations as a mechanic. Even before flotillas, Raiders and CR90s were used as activation padding. It just so happens that flotillas are cheaper and allow for more activations. To fix this issue, a core rule change would have to happen, with the most likely being a pass mechanic along the lines of on player passing activations until both players are on an equal footing. I've read all the ideas on how to fix it, and read the feedback from people trying different things. I don't see any other way to fix activations without FFG making a huge change to the game.

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18 minutes ago, Audio Weasel said:

I don't see adding a third phase to the game... But some people have suggested moving the flotillas to the fighter phase....thoughts?

Moving flotilla activations to the squadron phase is an interesting proposal, as many people use flotillas to push squadrons.

However, doing so would inadvertently nerf Slicers, which isn't all that uncommon. If I have Slicers, and my enemy has a carrier, then I cannot stop his carrier from wreaking havoc during the ship phase.

Edited by Warlord Zepnick

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17 minutes ago, Audio Weasel said:

I don't see adding a third phase to the game... But some people have suggested moving the flotillas to the fighter phase....thoughts?

been discussed and thought about, and the consensus was that it doesnt solve the issue either. what if i want to push my squadrons earlier? Why do i have to wait?

I think @Undeadguy has it right that the game is about activations.  i disagree with his point though (if he's making it? i might be looking for subtext that isnt there...) that overdoing it on activations is bad for the game.

To talk to the OP, @Payens, activations are important, yes, but using those activations well is importanter (because i WILL reuse my own jokes).  Like @Snipafist said, theyre great initially but dont do much later on in the game. Yeah, your opponent brought (i'm gonna guess) an Avenger with like 4 flotillas to ensure it can go first and last (and i'm gonna guess Demo as the 6th ship?)  He ALSO probably had to cut points somewhere (i'm gonna guess fighter coverage, but that's me guessing a lot of things), so your goal is not to outactivate him (i've stopped thinking of trying to do that) or outbid him (30 point bids make me want to give up on bidding) but outPLAY him.  Stay in the side arcs, dont rush up to him if you can (again, assuming Avenger), keep either piling on damage or take out his other ships.  Flotillas have existed for a bit now, and everyone has their own opinions about dealing with them.  If you can kill a few of them, his activation advantage drops to near nothingness.  I also imagine those flotillas arent doing much, maybe Comms Netting him some tokens, but all you need for a win is more of his stuff dead.  Or you got more points off the objective, i suppose.

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42 minutes ago, Audio Weasel said:

I don't see adding a third phase to the game... But some people have suggested moving the flotillas to the fighter phase....thoughts?

Not without significantly dropping the price, given that that would negate one of their major tactical uses as stated at release: to "field multiple flotillas and activate them early to draw out your opponent's larger ships."

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You know, this us gonna likely get me some hate but honestly....get over it. The game is built on an alternating activation mechanic. If you opponent wants to sink a bunch of points into flotilla then so be it.

I played D&D minis when it was a competitive game years ago and people would have powerful 60 & 70 point even 120 point figures in a max 12 figure 200 point warbabd with the last 4 figures being useless 3 point farmers, rats, elves or orcs *depending on faction.

Again it is the nature of the game and the way the rules are built.

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1 hour ago, Undeadguy said:

So those Defiance Ackbar fleets with 6 activations can get get up to 7? 

Sure, if a Double ISD fleet can get 4 activations. It would go a long way towards evening up the activation game. As of now, the incentive is to have multiple small ships. There is no incentive to take multiple Large. The risk vs reward is too high for it to be competitive.

 

 

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So this has been been talked about it  the other thread good to know.  I do not think know we need to rehash old agreements and we can ignore this thread now. 

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51 minutes ago, geek19 said:

 what if i want to push my squadrons earlier? Why do i have to wait?

You don't. Use a bigger ship to push your squads.

But I agree, the points cost of flotillas might need to be changed if they were pushed to the squad phase.  Maybe not by much though.

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I think giving the flotillas a chance to activate squads dedicated after the ships have been forced to move already is an absolutely terrible idea.  It still leaves them a lot of power, and everything is closer.

I've come around to actually liking the idea of flotilla costing squad points.  It would allow either large activiations, or large squad compliments, but not both.  It would create an interesting dichotomy, imo. 

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55 minutes ago, NeonKnight said:

You know, this us gonna likely get me some hate but honestly....get over it. The game is built on an alternating activation mechanic. If you opponent wants to sink a bunch of points into flotilla then so be it.

I played D&D minis when it was a competitive game years ago and people would have powerful 60 & 70 point even 120 point figures in a max 12 figure 200 point warbabd with the last 4 figures being useless 3 point farmers, rats, elves or orcs *depending on faction.

Again it is the nature of the game and the way the rules are built.

 

What I am trying to say is this. With the D&D Minis, 12 figs, people would make sure they HAD 12 activations. And if that mean 6 figs were 3 pointers...well, send something of your cheap to deal with their cheap.

That simple.

And, if they are running lots of cheap things, that means less points for upgrades on the BIG things.

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51 minutes ago, NeonKnight said:

 

What I am trying to say is this. With the D&D Minis, 12 figs, people would make sure they HAD 12 activations. And if that mean 6 figs were 3 pointers...well, send something of your cheap to deal with their cheap.

That simple.

And, if they are running lots of cheap things, that means less points for upgrades on the BIG things.

The problem with Armada is that Flotillas can't hurt Flotillas unless you are really good at the ram game. So you can't even send your cheap activations to deal with theirs. Anything that can hunt them is twice as expensive, or squadrons you are taking out of the squadron fight. There is zero incentive not to use them as just activation padding. Combat Flotillas may be the best answer. If your opponent can get a cheap anti-flotilla Flotilla then it becomes a stalemate. 

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This idea is not new, which others have already pointed out.

 

What I haven't seen mentioned is that making flotilla activate after other ships completely dumps on flotilla ship support upgrades, ie Suppressor, slicer tools, comms nets and repair teams. Most now only set up for the next turn, so become much more restrictive, and have less viable turns of use. Repair teams with its range 2 restriction also become much harder to pull off.

I don't mind an upgrade that lets you pass. Maybe make it discard. Also maybe make it a weapons team to avoid the obvious Defiance buff, which is one of the best titles as is. Veteran/Seasoned/Hardened/Combat Tacticians?

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10 hours ago, geek19 said:

I think @Undeadguy has it right that the game is about activations.  i disagree with his point though (if he's making it? i might be looking for subtext that isnt there...) that overdoing it on activations is bad for the game.

My point is, if you want to change how activations work, you need to change the core rules. Making a new phase would be a terrible idea. And making upgrades that pass are subject to abuse and become auto-includes since activations are so powerful. And then when you run into someone else with that upgrade, you gain no value. 

FFG would need to rewrite the rules in some fashion if they thought activations were an issue for the game.

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