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brettpkelly

Ugnaughts at regionals

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7 minutes ago, pheaver said:

I doubt Ira or I are playing again until Worlds, due to the lack of events in our area, so I have no issues posting our lists.

Ira's was Vader, Palp, 2 eJet, 2 officer, Zillo.  Lucas also ran it and came in 2nd, I believe.  They separately came up with the list, as far as I know, without talking to one another beforehand.  Lucas was my only loss, too: I won the Vader war, but he killed all my other guys and tagged 4 patrons.

I ran Vader, 2 eSentry, 3 officer, Zillo.  The eSentries pack a huge punch, and had longer range than the eJets.  Opponents often get this horrible choice of "he shoved Vader in my face and I did half damage to him.  Do I finish off Vader with almost all of my attacks this turn or switch targets to the Sentries who sniped me last turn and are setting up double taps for this turn?" 

Thanks for the lists! Would you mind posting that to the Lists thread as well so we can have as many data points as possible?

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2 hours ago, pheaver said:

I doubt Ira or I are playing again until Worlds, due to the lack of events in our area, so I have no issues posting our lists.

Ira's was Vader, Palp, 2 eJet, 2 officer, Zillo.  Lucas also ran it and came in 2nd, I believe.  They separately came up with the list, as far as I know, without talking to one another beforehand.  Lucas was my only loss, too: I won the Vader war, but he killed all my other guys and tagged 4 patrons.

I ran Vader, 2 eSentry, 3 officer, Zillo.  The eSentries pack a huge punch, and had longer range than the eJets.  Opponents often get this horrible choice of "he shoved Vader in my face and I did half damage to him.  Do I finish off Vader with almost all of my attacks this turn or switch targets to the Sentries who sniped me last turn and are setting up double taps for this turn?" 

I ran double eSentries at a local tournament and was surprised by how consistent they are! They're definitely the Imperial equivalent of generic snipers, akin to the Alliance Rangers and hidden Weequays. I'll have to give them a spin with Vader.

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@pheaver

You're right about my opening.  I can get pretty animated when I see a community, especially in person, getting adversarial over things like list building, bringing popular lists to tournaments, that kind of thing, so I apologize, broadly to anyone having to wear out their mouse wheel getting through that.  To the person who got some sleep on account of being bored to death with the text wall, I offer no apologies but accept your gratitude humbly.

So back on topic, now that you've brought in some data on your event;

When you spoke about the Vader/eJets list, I think it's fair to not have to qualify that by speculating that they probably didn't come up with it together.  The eJets are a pretty mainstay Imperial starter up until now, so it's probably a matter of opening up a list builder, putting that and Zillo in (any good list builder should just auto-include it for Imperials in the interest of efficiency), and then going "well Vader's great now, let's add him" and then seeing what else can fill in the points.

I wouldn't be surprised to see that template of Vader and 2 eJets popping up in reports to come, with the rest being seasoned to taste.

Regarding your own list, with the 2 eSentries, how did you find it stood up to ramping damage from Hunter lists?  I'm with your logic of presenting that hard choice to your opponent, but I didn't get a read on what the overall field was like, in terms of your matchups, and in general.  It would be interesting to hear how it went against other big hitters like an IG-88/Jedi Luke killing spree up close.

Finally, any commentary on Command Card play?  I find this often gets overlooked in peoples' summaries.  I don't think we need super-detailed blow-by-blow, but maybe a word or three on a couple of clutch cards that you used that people might not have thought about, unless of course that's the trade secret you want to hold for Worlds.  If so, PM me the details and an attached NDA and I'll happily read and keep your secrets.

 

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Ugnaught Swarm has not been very popular within my area's meta, but the few times I've played against it I've gotten TRASHED. Regardless of my list. Just can't seem to keep up with it. 

What are your strategies with surviving the swarm? I hope not to see too many of them at regionals, but as has already been stated... I think it'd be very unsportsmanlike to shame one's opponent for bringing them. 

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6 hours ago, brettpkelly said:

 I think some of the players actually wanted to face an ugnaught list to see if their Vader lists held up. 

I think that's the irony of the Ugnaught concerns now that we're into Regionals with Heart out in circulation; 3 popular characters have been re-injected back into the competitive meta, which probably lead to everyone wanting to run that new material, and Vader is a safe bet for being a popular choice.

As a general question to anyone that's so far played in a Regional, or planning to, what's the read on Clawdites?  I've heard a lot of talk about them leading up to this and I'm wondering if they actually make it in, or if the community is going to shift off of Mercs and over into Imperials with their new toys.

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Clawdites are more for fun than competition.  They are useful, but I don't know how many times I've whiffed with an eClaw and passed out no tokens first turn and then he becomes a wasted activation almost.  For 6 points, you really need something dependable and he is not it. 

That being said, I have had all kinds of fun playing spies like us with mercs. It would never hold up to a competitive list, but it is fun for goofing around. The Scout is pretty poor compared to an eWeequay even with the 3 dice he is not as dependable and costs 50%more.The Streetrat is a beast if you can get the assassin's blade off, but the best you can do is kill a guy and take out a wounded figure but then you're going to get killed, so I'm not sure it's worth the price in practical terms.

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5 hours ago, pheaver said:

I ran Vader, 2 eSentry, 3 officer, Zillo.  The eSentries pack a huge punch, and had longer range than the eJets.  Opponents often get this horrible choice of "he shoved Vader in my face and I did half damage to him.  Do I finish off Vader with almost all of my attacks this turn or switch targets to the Sentries who sniped me last turn and are setting up double taps for this turn?" 

This is delightful and terrifying. I wish there was room for Trusted Ally on one of the eSentries, which would protect Vader from any Stun antics and give a reroll. 

I wonder if we'll see more Stun lists now that we know that lists with Han, JK Luke, Vader and IG-88 are viable. (Honestly, if eRebelSabs had just a bit more natural punch, they would be really scary.)

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7 minutes ago, cnemmick said:

This is delightful and terrifying. I wish there was room for Trusted Ally on one of the eSentries, which would protect Vader from any Stun antics and give a reroll. 

I wonder if we'll see more Stun lists now that we know that lists with Han, JK Luke, Vader and IG-88 are viable. (Honestly, if eRebelSabs had just a bit more natural punch, they would be really scary.)

I'm going to have to do the experimentation on this, but I think they might actually make a comeback if spies make a comeback. I think that with Hera and a much better set of Rebel spies with Ahsoka and Jarrod they would be worth trying at least.

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30 minutes ago, ThatJakeGuy said:

I'm going to have to do the experimentation on this, but I think they might actually make a comeback if spies make a comeback. I think that with Hera and a much better set of Rebel spies with Ahsoka and Jarrod they would be worth trying at least.

@kingargyle ran Newbacca, Ahsoka, eSabs x2, Chopper and Gideon (I think?) vs. my Vader 39 squad (HATRED FATHER, eJets x2, eRiots, rImpOfficer, Zillo, Rule By Fear, Unshakable). Chewie had no problem throwing down his Stun, but the eSabs couldn't roll enough surges to both Pierce 2 (to ensure damage was getting dealt) AND to Stun.

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1 hour ago, cnemmick said:

@kingargyle ran Newbacca, Ahsoka, eSabs x2, Chopper and Gideon (I think?) vs. my Vader 39 squad (HATRED FATHER, eJets x2, eRiots, rImpOfficer, Zillo, Rule By Fear, Unshakable). Chewie had no problem throwing down his Stun, but the eSabs couldn't roll enough surges to both Pierce 2 (to ensure damage was getting dealt) AND to Stun.

Maybe I'm missing something, but in this matchup, assuming you're able to get the second surge with the eSabs, isn't it better spent doubling down on Pierce 2 again?  I feel like the 2 points of damage extra that affords you is well worth the offset of putting Stun on Vader and having him use Unshakeable to clear it for 1 damage.

I'm with you on wanting to get Stun off on Vader, but if he's backed by Unshakeable it just doesn't seem to be worth it for the eSabs in particular.

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If there was a reliable way to get hide on the rebel sabs or alliance smuggler, these guys would fill lists.

Even a way to pass out power tokens would boost their utility. I always wondered why, in a day of self focusing and in an army with more beneficial support units, there was never any figure or mechanism to distribute Hidden tokens. The weequay do it the best out of all the figures. Davith can get it. Lando wishes he could get it and Murne is a waste of points. It's like they gave up on that mechanic in the game after Bespin.

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4 hours ago, buckero0 said:

It's like they gave up on that mechanic in the game after Bespin.

It's a similar design philosophy that Descent 2E had; each expansion box introduced a new condition, which was then ignored largely in future releases.  I'm hoping the Power Tokens don't stop being used after Heart of the Empire, as I think it's a great way to potentially get units that are "almost there" out of the table with things like dropping that extra surge on the Sabs like you mentioned.

As a small consolation to IA players who may not have played Descent, I'll say on a positive note with regards to tacked-on conditions, that at least IA came with Focus in the Core box, so you're not left with this ridiculous surplus of green dice over time.

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Catching up:

I posted my list (including Command deck) on the regional list page.  My easiest wins with the list were when my opponents decided they had to kill Vader first: Sentries do a ton of damage, and are a little glass cannony, so they should be the first target.  Since I know that, I try to be a little cautious with them on the first turn and set up good double-taps for the second turn, instead of running headlong into the fray with them (unlike Vader, who Banthas his way forward and dares my opponent to kill him).

I really only worried about running into IG88 w/ Blaze in his opening hand.  Everything else, Vader can tank, unless they get a ton of Hunter cards in their opening hand, or Vader rolls exceptionally poorly on defense.  I was sitting next to Ira when he rolled double evade and rerolled into another evade, for example. :)  If your opponent is running IG88/Luke or anything with stun, you have to just put everything you have into it ASAP and hope they don't have the cards to make your life miserable.  Bodyguard is also great for those "ok, Vader's about dead and there's a 4 die attack coming at him" moments.

Vader's also great against the Ugnaughts, as he'll murder them pretty quickly and is immune to the junk droid.  You'll lose a sentry on the first turn, but if you can kill their bodyguards, and there's no easy way to make 14 points from objectives, they lose.

There were a ton of Vaders, Lukes, Hans, Palps at the regional.  It was nice to see the expensive uniques finally be playable.  I wouldn't be surprised to see more stun and spy stuff in the coming months to counter this.

 

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8 minutes ago, pheaver said:

I really only worried about running into IG88 w/ Blaze in his opening hand.  Everything else, Vader can tank, unless they get a ton of Hunter cards in their opening hand, or Vader rolls exceptionally poorly on defense.  I was sitting next to Ira when he rolled double evade and rerolled into another evade, for example. :)  If your opponent is running IG88/Luke or anything with stun, you have to just put everything you have into it ASAP and hope they don't have the cards to make your life miserable.  Bodyguard is also great for those "ok, Vader's about dead and there's a 4 die attack coming at him" moments.

Vader's also great against the Ugnaughts, as he'll murder them pretty quickly and is immune to the junk droid.  You'll lose a sentry on the first turn, but if you can kill their bodyguards, and there's no easy way to make 14 points from objectives, they lose.

There were a ton of Vaders, Lukes, Hans, Palps at the regional.  It was nice to see the expensive uniques finally be playable.  I wouldn't be surprised to see more stun and spy stuff in the coming months to counter this.

That sounds about right. My guess is that there will be a healthy Vader and anti-Vader meta. In my games so far against Vader, I have found him pretty solid, but I would not consider him overpowered. Like you said, some lucky card draws and solid card play by your opponent, and some bad defence "dice luck" from you could be a quickly melted Vader.  Regardless, I also agree that the game has opened up nicely and to me it seems you can compete with any faction. 

Although I have not been blown away by the Clawdites (elite or regular), I think they along with a few of the new command cards can make a decent spy list with any faction. 

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13 hours ago, cleardave said:

I'm with you on wanting to get Stun off on Vader, but if he's backed by Unshakeable it just doesn't seem to be worth it for the eSabs in particular.

Agreed. But even without Unshakeable, if eSabs had to hold back a surge for Stun, they're in trouble vs. Vader.

I did a real quick-and-dirty analysis of eSabs this morning. This first graph shows eSabs not spending any surges during their attack -- with the presumption that a surge would be spent for Stun:

9PaeSXT.png

Red - vs Vader (2 black die, no defense rerolls, no Zillo) - 39% for at least 1 DMG
Green - vs JK Luke (1 white die +1 EVADE) - 82% for at least 1 DMG
Blue - vs. IG-88 (1 black die +1 BLOCK) - 49% for at least 1 DMG

Admittedly, this is a rough calculation because it assumes the eSab won't roll 2 surges. But I felt like it was a fair assumption because eSabs don't have the greatest odds to roll more than 2 surges:

Chance to roll at least 2 SURGE vs black die: 21.30%
Chance to roll at least 2 SURGE vs white die: 9.72%
Chance to roll at least 2 SURGE vs 2 black die (no defensive rerolls): 18.13%

If we went the opposite way -- spending at least 2 surges on Pierce 2 -- the damage output improves but not in a spectacular fashion:

geAxIDf.png

Red - vs Vader (2 black die, no defense rerolls, no Zillo)
Green - vs JK Luke (1 white die +1 EVADE)
Blue - vs. IG-88 (1 black die +1 BLOCK)

That's a lot better, but it's not quite knockout blows on any of the eSab's targets. 

Also, consider that an Imperial player that has Vader will likely have Zillo. In the following graph, I simulated it by giving Vader a natural +1 EVADE (which would remove one of the eSab's surges for Pierce 2):

x3na01w.png

Red - vs Vader (2 black die +1 EVADE to simulate Zillo negation of Pierce 2, no defense rerolls, no Zillo for +1 BLOCK)

Woof.

Anyway, I think we all learned a valuable lesson this morning: if you are running JK Luke, stay far, far away from your opponent's eSabs.

Edited by cnemmick

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@cnemmick , I would think with Zillo, you know you're going to get denied one pierce 2, so when you're playing you're actually counting on it.  That's why  you let these guys run tandem. If you could get 2 surges reliably, you're effectively getting Pierce 4. That's why I would love a support reliable support figure (eClaw is not totally reliable and really has too many targets for his tokens and is tripolar with his function). If I could get an extra surge or have these guys focused, then having 2 of them shoot Vader with Pierce 4, I'm still only pushing 3-4 damage through on average. Which now we're talking about adding a Targetting Computer so the red die is reliable and keeping your figures together so they can both shoot vader.  Maybe 8 points, some focus or token sharing (you're investing a lot in these guys already and now I've got to take a 6pt Saska just so my eClawdite can boost them at the beginning of the Game) and now you see my quandary with Saboteurs and nerfed Royal Guards and Saska and all the Hoth and before figures is they just don't fit in this game real well right now.  All that rambling to say that at 8pts the eRebSabs struggle to get more than 5 damage consistently on Vader between the 2 of them and you're probably better off trying something else.

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1 hour ago, NeverBetTheFett said:

One must not underestimate the power of the dark (black) dice. Especially when you can re-roll them! 

Ugh, the psychological effect of watching Vader reroll black dice into 5 or 6 blocks is brutal . Focused Onar did 1 point of damage against Vader, and just staring at the dice psyched me out rest of the game/regional.

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1 hour ago, buckero0 said:

@cnemmick , I would think with Zillo, you know you're going to get denied one pierce 2, so when you're playing you're actually counting on it.  That's why  you let these guys run tandem. If you could get 2 surges reliably, you're effectively getting Pierce 4. That's why I would love a support reliable support figure (eClaw is not totally reliable and really has too many targets for his tokens and is tripolar with his function). If I could get an extra surge or have these guys focused, then having 2 of them shoot Vader with Pierce 4, I'm still only pushing 3-4 damage through on average. Which now we're talking about adding a Targetting Computer so the red die is reliable and keeping your figures together so they can both shoot vader.  Maybe 8 points, some focus or token sharing (you're investing a lot in these guys already and now I've got to take a 6pt Saska just so my eClawdite can boost them at the beginning of the Game) and now you see my quandary with Saboteurs and nerfed Royal Guards and Saska and all the Hoth and before figures is they just don't fit in this game real well right now.  All that rambling to say that at 8pts the eRebSabs struggle to get more than 5 damage consistently on Vader between the 2 of them and you're probably better off trying something else.

"With Zillo" is going to be nightmare for non-Imperial players this season. :)

Honestly, I'm not for sure if eSabs *should* do more than 1-2 damage per shot on Vader, Iggy or whichever big figure. But I think they should be improved so that they are a threat to non-Unique deployments by having much better odds of doing 3 DMG like other Cost 7/Figure Cost 4 figures like eJets (who can only reliably do 1 or 2 DMG to Vader themselves, not counting Zillo). 

And they're not going to have a 75% chance of at least 3 DMG to 1-die defenders, then they should be able to apply Stun at a much higher rate.

I'll take a shot at tinkering them in the Skirmish Fixes thread later this week.

Edited by cnemmick

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1 hour ago, Nefarious Qwark said:

Ugh, the psychological effect of watching Vader reroll black dice into 5 or 6 blocks is brutal . Focused Onar did 1 point of damage against Vader, and just staring at the dice psyched me out rest of the game/regional.

it can go south in a hurry.  I've had Vader be indestructible and I've seen him go down with only getting to attack once.  If he kills a 4pt guy and I get Vader, I'll take that trade and set myself up for turn 3 winning.

My black dice only roll 1 block no matter how many rerolls unless I'm playing a new guy then it's all 3blocks all the time.

Dice are so swingy.

Edited by buckero0

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4 hours ago, cnemmick said:

Anyway, I think we all learned a valuable lesson this morning: if you are running JK Luke, stay far, far away from your opponent's eSabs.

I think you forgot to account for Luke's built in evade. eSabs would have to roll at least 2 surges, maybe even 3 to get one through against Luke. Even with Blitz and Hera, it's not a guarantee.

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2 minutes ago, brettpkelly said:

I think you forgot to account for Luke's built in evade. eSabs would have to roll at least 2 surges, maybe even 3 to get one through against Luke. Even with Blitz and Hera, it's not a guarantee.

I meant more in the fact that Sabs can drop some decent damage on him even without spending any surges. But, yeah, Stun is not guaranteed. I should have been more clear, my bad.

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On 12/11/2017 at 8:30 PM, cleardave said:

Maybe I'm missing something, but in this matchup, assuming you're able to get the second surge with the eSabs, isn't it better spent doubling down on Pierce 2 again?  I feel like the 2 points of damage extra that affords you is well worth the offset of putting Stun on Vader and having him use Unshakeable to clear it for 1 damage.

I'm with you on wanting to get Stun off on Vader, but if he's backed by Unshakeable it just doesn't seem to be worth it for the eSabs in particular.

Yeah... I missed played a couple of things in there, mainly because I forgot he had Unshakeable.   With Unshakeable, using Pierce 2 is better.   I could have won the game, but as I said I missed played a key Chewie move and got slam happy.

 

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On 12/12/2017 at 0:46 PM, cnemmick said:

(Vader) "With Zillo" is going to be nightmare for non-Imperial players this season.

I HATE IT......I HATE IT.....I HATE IT!!!!!!!!!

I've played against a lot of Vader lately, and I've stopped attacking him always. My buddy has a way of consistently rolling/zillo-ing for 6+ blocks. I max out with 3 damage with 2 RRG IG attacks. Infuriating haha.

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15 hours ago, wannabepudge said:

I HATE IT......I HATE IT.....I HATE IT!!!!!!!!!

I've played against a lot of Vader lately, and I've stopped attacking him always. My buddy has a way of consistently rolling/zillo-ing for 6+ blocks. I max out with 3 damage with 2 RRG IG attacks. Infuriating haha.

I'm thinking hunters are the only hope. You'd still have to get lucky with command card draw too! Even then, you'll have to hope for a few bad rolls by Vader. 

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