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Zion's Finest -- Episode 5! Save Us (From) Lord Vader!

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https://zionsfinestia.podbean.com/e/episode-005-save-us-from-lord-vader/

Hello all! We're back! With more content! Because we are addicts! Someone help us!

In this episode, Scott and Kenny discuss several recent regionals in the far-flung reaches of the globe (neither of which they attended, because they are suckers) and highlight the growing dominance of Lord Vader and his thoroughly rotten master, Sheev Palpatine. They discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the list (Vader, Palp, 2 eJets, 2 rOfficers), and Scott focuses on particular iterations with which he has been experimenting.

The Lords of the Sith® list (THAT'S RIGHT, THAT'S WHAT WE'RE CALLING IT! DON'T ANYONE TRY TO SAY THEY CALLED IT THAT FIRST OR TRY TO CALL IT SOMETHING DIFFERENT!) has been doing extremely well. It won the Denver, Colorado Regional and it was in the final game at the Maryland Regional. It also has featured prominantly in top lists from Dutch Nationals, Orleans France Regional, and other big tournaments.

Scott is a long-time Vader player, so he brings a unique perspective on the resurgence of the Dark Lord. He is an experienced IA player with several tournament wins under his belt and a willingness to crush all who oppose the onslaught of his imperial might. YOU BETTER LISTEN TO HIM.

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2 hours ago, Darth evil said:

can the episodes be downloaded directly to my phone ?

@Darth evil You bet! You can download the episodes on any mobile podcasting app (iTunes, Pocket Cast, Podbean, etc.). You can also listen through the actual Podbean website, but I would recommend using an app.

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2 hours ago, brettpkelly said:

Listened to the episode this morning; really insightful look into both the Vader/Palpatine list and the rebel smugglers! I appreciate the shout-out!

You deserve it! The write-up was amazing and your discussion of everything was really helpful. Thank you!

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listened to it on the way to work, considering i won my SC with the same list i found it very insightful, especially on the Jabba map which i didn't get to play on.

Would you mind publishing your command deck, i'm curious to see if and how much diffrent it could be with my own .

 

Thanks

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16 minutes ago, Darth evil said:

listened to it on the way to work, considering i won my SC with the same list i found it very insightful, especially on the Jabba map which i didn't get to play on.

Would you mind publishing your command deck, i'm curious to see if and how much diffrent it could be with my own .

 

Thanks

Hey @Darth evil, which command deck were you looking for? Brett Kelly's? He talks about that on his write up. I don't have Lucas' command deck. If you are looking for Scott's command deck, I will ask him to post it. I'm sure he'll be happy to oblige!

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@Darth evil Hey, it's Scott

So I'll post the Command decks for the two Vader Palp lists I'm running and experimenting with.

For the Vader, Palp, 2x E Jets, 2 officers and Zillo

Take Initiative, Negation, Blitz, Armed Escort, Fuel Upgrade, Grenadier, Force Jump, Force Rush, Dark Energy, Prepared for Battle, Officers Training, Face to Face, Looking for a Fight, Force Surge, and Brace for Impact.

 

For my Vader, Palp, 1x what, BT, 2 officers, Zillo, and unshakeable

Ive kept most of the same cards but switched out Grenadier, Fuel Upgrade, and armed escort for Tough Luck, Stealth Tactics, and To the Limit.

 

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10 hours ago, DarthScott1991 said:

@Darth evil Hey, it's Scott

So I'll post the Command decks for the two Vader Palp lists I'm running and experimenting with.

For the Vader, Palp, 2x E Jets, 2 officers and Zillo

Take Initiative, Negation, Blitz, Armed Escort, Fuel Upgrade, Grenadier, Force Jump, Force Rush, Dark Energy, Prepared for Battle, Officers Training, Face to Face, Looking for a Fight, Force Surge, and Brace for Impact.

 

For my Vader, Palp, 1x what, BT, 2 officers, Zillo, and unshakeable

Ive kept most of the same cards but switched out Grenadier, Fuel Upgrade, and armed escort for Tough Luck, Stealth Tactics, and To the Limit.

 

Listened to the podcast. I liked it especially about Vader.  It's also nice you gave some attention to the Dutch Nationals.

I started out testing with the Vader, Palp, 2x ejets 2 officers list when I wanted to know if Vader lists could be competitive and used for nationals.

I totally agree with you guys when choosing for a vader list that at least a temporary advantage is that other players are not used to play against Vader Palp. So I could make use of mistakes made by my opponents. And some opponents did underestimate the distance Vader and Palp could go and still be able to do 2 attacks in round 1 with the emperor ability and end of round attack from Vader (circa 12-14 damage). Even more so with both officers and command cards. Tempt is also an amazing ability. No use runing away for units with just 1 health left. I was expecting a lot of scum (and IG), because it were the first Dutch Nationals and I thought players would go back to lists they were familiar with when playing a bigger tournament.

In the end I decided to go for an all out strategy with Vader and parting blows, combined with the great new cc dark energy and looking for a fight to have more control over my extra attacks. Which was the reason for me to swap 1 E-jet for 1 R-riot trooper to make space for RbF and Unshakable. Because I wanted Vader to stay a threat even after doing a parting blow with unshakable and have insurance if I would met a list with stun units. And I had to increase the chance of making this combo of cc possible with RbF. In the end I could make the cc combo twice in 7 matches (winning both matches). Luckily these cards are still good on their own and even more with Zillo (although parting blows can be played around to a reasonable extend). 

I think my list is a more high risk high reward choice compared to taking 2 E-jets.

Some general notes from my experience with Vader Palp. 

Natural targets: black dice units, IG can go down in 2 attacks from Vader like you guys mentioned although you may need an extra cc, Equay are great targets for Vader striking them down in one attack in most cases.

Vader lists are great for control missions. You have to go to the other side to attack so you are immediatly close to controling objectives on the middle of the map. 

Try to keep Palp out of line of sight as long as possible. You want to give Vader (and riot troopers) as a target to your opponent.

Palp needs to survive a little bit longer because he is so versatile and still very effective with E-Jets. Vader can die after killing some units first and soaking up a lot of resources from your opponent.

The list is vulnerable to units with push abilities. The emperor ability can't be used on Vader when he is pushed away by Onar, Chopper or Chewie for example.

Would love to hear some comments from you guys on my list compared to Scott's lists.

Greetings from the Netherlands.

East from the UK, west from Germany. And far east or west depending on your preference from the USA. A country where we love windmills and IG-88. ?

 

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@Cloud 123 Glad you liked it!  Great to hear from The Netherlands.

 

I think your list is a bit more durable than mine as BT can be a bit swingy at times. I also wanted that insurance with unshakeable, but since I went with BT I want to ask, how do those riot troopers do? BT has more damage output and range, but two figures have slightly more defensive capability, and their area control is better. The issue I found is that most units in the meta right now are doing 5 damage in one attack pretty consistently, so they can go down in one shot. The brawler card synergy is nice though.  Parting Blow is a great card card for Vader, especially if you are facing Ahsoka, or another Vader, or can get close to a unit. I'm not sure what I would lose to include it. Any thoughts? 

Edited by DarthScott1991

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I liked the use of the R-riot trooper. Although 5 HP is indeed in the dangerzone for big 3 dice attacks in one attack. The riot troopers do have extra defense. The extra block they get at the end of the activation and Zillo makes them actually harder to kill than an Equay without Zillo. True sometimes you have to use a card for the extra block. Most times I did use zillo and a cc if I could save a riot trooper. There were a few moments where a cc had to much offensive potential to use it for saving a riot trooper. Compared to BT they are definitely stronger on defense like you said. The same amount of 10 HP + 2 block tokens + overkill damage times 2 instead of 1. Makes it more of a 13 HP defense something deployment instead of 10 for just 5 points. Another advantage is you only give 4 VP to your opponent when you lose both. Instead of 8 for 2 E-jets or 6 for BT. I also liked to have 2 extra figures for securing objectives and BLOCK LINE OF SIGHT easier to Palp and my set of E-jets and sometimes Vader. In reality I think it took 3 big 3 dice attacks on average to take out both riots and sometimes a heigtened reflex, positioning advantage, element of surprise. My opponents had to invest to take them out I think.

There is a downside as well offcourse. Damage output is lower but mainly because they are melee. The average output of a R-riot trooper is between 2,5 and 3 against 1 defense die times 2 opportunities to attack =5 or 6. For BT I think it is between 5 and 6 without cc and blast as well. But it is definitely easier to launch one attack from BT than 2 from R riot troopers and BT also has the 3 small attacks option. Unfortunatly it is too dangerous to take hunter cards with just BT in your list so not much help from the hunter trait. R-riots have nice trait synergy with Vader and E-jets.

In addition you get 2 extra cc because of RbF and 1 out of 5 to discard. Which I really liked to have in my build. I loved planning as well. I threw away a card like though luck to use planning. To start the game with 5 cc is amazing. It gave so much flexibility and damage potential.

As for your list I would take out force surge for parting blow. Because 7 ish damage is better then 2. Although force surge is easier to use. For a second parting blow I think I would swap prepared for battle. Or maybe 2 cc of 1 point like blitz and something else.

Did you like force jump? I thought it would under perform so I did not take it.

My total cc list was: grenadier, 2×parting blow, overrun, call the vanguard, dark energy, death blow, negation, tough luck, looking for a fight, planning, TI, force rush, urgency and element of surprise.

 

Edited by Cloud 123

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I can  totally see your logic and reasoning with R riot troopers. The reasons that I like force surge is that both Vader and Palp can use it, it is unmitigatable damage that can't be blocked, and it allows you to reposition for the end of round action if necessary. As for Force Jump, I really appreciate the flexibility it provides allowing Vader an extra movement and can ignore difficult terrain. It also allows Palp to move into position when you need a force lightning and get off an Emperor. I also think Tough Luck is super useful because so many units are rerolling right now.

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i think i'm going to try the Vader/Palp double eJets,double Officer list with this command deck

(2) ▪ Force Surge
(1) ▪ Negation
(1) ▪ Stealth Tactics
(1) ▪ Tough Luck
(1) ▪▪ Deflection
(1) ▪ Brace for Impact
(1) ▪ Armed Escort
(0) ▪ Brace Yourself
(2) ▪ Call the Vanguard
(1) ▪ Force Jump
(1) ▪ Face to Face
(0) ▪ Planning
(0) ▪ Take Initiative
(0) ▪ Force Rush
(0) ▪ Deadly Precision

 

it seems really tanky and could pull off some surprising combo's (Stealth or brace For impact with Deflection, ForceRush+Forcejump + Face to Face) 

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4 hours ago, Darth evil said:

with so many way to make interrupt or end of round attacks, what do you guys think about cards like Brace Yourself

I agree with @DarthScott1991 on this one. Although the card definitely has become better with New Darth, Palp and New Han.

 

Your list is definitly hard to kill and build for defense. I would personally add dark energy and lose force jump or face to face. I think dark energy is a great card.

Edited by Cloud 123

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13 minutes ago, Cloud 123 said:

I agree with @DarthScott1991 on this one. Although the card definitely has become better with New Darth, Palp and New Han.

 

Your list is definitly hard to kill and build for defense. I would personally add dark energy and lose force jump or face to face. I think dark energy is a great card.

Brace For Impact does cost 1 point though. Brace Yourself is free. If you use Greedo, you can also force the use of the card... GIA!

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