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Nerf Harpoons

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Whenever I play with Harpoons, they are unbelievably strong. Especially when you have two of them and you can fire them in a row. TL and splash effect with condition? Really? I always feel a very negative atmosphere when playing with harpoons.  And I can understand that, they suck. They suck so badly regarding balance.

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It shocks me that they made Harpoons and Cruise Missiles not require you to spend your target lock, which, when combined with the splash damage in Harpoon's case, makes them very poorly balanced for the cost.

This seems to be a common problem with the power creep. It's not so much that the cards effects are game-breaking, but the squad cost makes them no-brainers to include instead of one of many options. The result of course is that more "traditional" weapons and ships (X-, A-, B-Wings and Proton Torpedoes, Cluster Missiles, etc) are simply not viable on most lists to stay competitive. The gunboat is a great example of this. I love it, but not putting Harpoons on it is a waste; if I wanted to run one with proton torpedoes I would be wasting squad points.

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As long as re-enforce and super high hp turrets exist I will accept Harpoons as the raw convuluted power creep that they are.

Maybe guidance chips isnt necessary anymore?

They are essentially a buff to Primary Forward Arc ships, Swarms, and lots of low hp 2 dice Low PS Generic stuff. They push sometimes boring 2 ship point fortress builds out of the game and with it the neccesity to use Kylo Crew. The light rises to meet the darkness.

Basically Harpoons are the A-Wing buff.

Its maybe an overly complicated way to get here but I would argue that they allow Forward Arcs to matter more? Thanks Harpoons? Dodge those arcs or the game is over?

Edited by Boom Owl

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Cruise Missiles are the polar opposite of Prockets, so it makes sense.
TL instead of Focus (prockets dont spend it either)
Based on speed instead of Agility
R2-3 (but gotta go fast so R1 problems) instead of only R1

Cruise missiles are fine.

But for a measily 1pt more you get effectively the same max potential strength attack regardless of speed and still keep targetlock. Factor in the splash, its even nastier. For 1pt? Really? Assault missiles were 5pts because splash damage is powerful purely for the "you cant evade me" bit, so for 1pt cheaper it keeps the TL, causes splash, and causes extra damage to the defender? wat?

Harpoons are a problem. I dont know what needs to change about them in the current context (they arent going to flatout erase half a condition card), but something needs to change. When i saw the condition i fully expected the harpoon itself to be another cheap, 1 damage if it hits attack and was flabbergasted when i saw the 4red and no cancel OR no spend TL.

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Just now, Vineheart01 said:

Harpoons are a problem. I dont know what needs to change about them in the current context (they arent going to flatout erase half a condition card), but something needs to change. When i saw the condition i fully expected the harpoon itself to be another cheap, 1 damage if it hits attack and was flabbergasted when i saw the 4red and no cancel OR no spend TL.

I feel like if it was a "deal one damage, assign the 'Harpooned' condition, then cancel all dice rolls" it would be a much better card. A trade off with a powerful ability to deal damage after the fact but low damage to represent how a harpoon would need to be light in order to work as intended.

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I don't actually think Harpoon Missiles are a huge deal. Yeah, they make other missiles look pathetic in comparison, but they aren't actually always the best option. Maybe it's just dumb luck, but I've beaten a much better player twice now in GUNBOAT vs. GUNBOAT matches, where he was flying Harpoon Missiles and I was flying cannons - HLC in the first game, Mangler in the second. So in my opinion, GUNBOATS are still better with cannons than missiles. Granted it's just one case, but I take it to mean that Harpoons aren't really game-breaking, because one of the ways I define a game-breaking upgrade is that any ship that has the slot is basically required to take it. 

That's not to say FFG won't nerf Harpoons though. They are FFG after all...

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2 minutes ago, Kieransi said:

I don't actually think Harpoon Missiles are a huge deal. Yeah, they make other missiles look pathetic in comparison, but they aren't actually always the best option. Maybe it's just dumb luck, but I've beaten a much better player twice now in GUNBOAT vs. GUNBOAT matches, where he was flying Harpoon Missiles and I was flying cannons - HLC in the first game, Mangler in the second. So in my opinion, GUNBOATS are still better with cannons than missiles. Granted it's just one case, but I take it to mean that Harpoons aren't really game-breaking, because one of the ways I define a game-breaking upgrade is that any ship that has the slot is basically required to take it. 

That's not to say FFG won't nerf Harpoons though. They are FFG after all...

The worst contender of harpoons is triple scurrgs, not the gunboat.

Scurrgs get the auto crit from gchips and theyre still lethal in R1 so you cant just nose-dive them to dodge the poons. Gunboats go down to a 3die attack, which still does damage but not as much as the poons or hlc (i run hlc too btw).
Gunboats have no way to reliably chain the harpoon effect, if the 2nd guy just happens to not get a crit the target is now double harpooned rather than BOOM -> get another one. Scurrgs trigger it automatically as a double-modded 4die attack is insanely difficult to fully evade.

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@Vineheart01, maybe it's time to nerf the Scurrg then... It's always bugged me how thematically inaccurate that design is anyway, putting that thing on a small base... that ship should be large-base, very fast, hard to turn, more expensive, and not have all those stupid bomb shenanigans. 

Edited by Kieransi

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10 minutes ago, Vineheart01 said:

The worst contender of harpoons is triple scurrgs, not the gunboat.

Scurrgs get the auto crit from gchips and theyre still lethal in R1 so you cant just nose-dive them to dodge the poons. Gunboats go down to a 3die attack, which still does damage but not as much as the poons or hlc (i run hlc too btw).
Gunboats have no way to reliably chain the harpoon effect, if the 2nd guy just happens to not get a crit the target is now double harpooned rather than BOOM -> get another one. Scurrgs trigger it automatically as a double-modded 4die attack is insanely difficult to fully evade.

are triple SCURRG still a thing?

only experienced them locally, where our resident champ found he hated the list because it just crumpled to any sort of competent late game if he didn't win in the alpha strike. ****, I jousted his *** with Jess/Low/Norra in formation. Didn't give a flying **** about the condition or the splash damage and the rebels just plowed through the SCURRG, letting Low DTF and Selflessness spread damage around while the SCURRG predictably folded to concentrated fire and left us with an auto-win lategame of Norra v no missile SCURRGs

lost Low, whoopdiedo

 

Harpoons seem very strong, but I'd far sooner be worried about them on higher PS than on SCURRG

Edited by ficklegreendice

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I think at least Harpoon and possibly also Cruise should either [1] cost 1 point more with current text [2] spend the TL to shoot.

That's not a huge nerf, but I think it'd bring them in line with other ordnance.

They aren't necessarily too broken in game terms, they're just ahead of the cost curve relative to other missiles and torpedos.  If Homing and Harpoon cost the same, it'd be a case of whether you'd rather have splash, or whether you'd rather negate evade tokens.  A thoroughly reasonable meta-call.  Or if Harpoon were the same cost as Concussion but spent the TL, it'd be a case of weighing whether you want initial hit damage, or the condition.  Or 4 pt TL spending Harpoons compared to 5 point Assault would be whether you think you can follow them up in a timely order or want the immediacy of Assault.  There'd be more interesting list-building choices.  However, Harpoon as printed are simply the superior missile.  There's no real comparisons, and on top of things they're significantly more complicated on the table.  It's not too hard once you've got the hang of it, but it's just true that it's got the most complicated on-hit effects of any missile.

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39 minutes ago, Kieransi said:

@Vineheart01, maybe it's time to nerf the Scurrg then... It's always bugged me how thematically inaccurate that design is anyway, putting that thing on a small base... that ship should be large-base, very fast, hard to turn, more expensive, and not have all those stupid bomb shenanigans. 

Um.... The bomb part is thematic (favorite ship to fly in Starfighter, so I know the ship well), but I’m with ya on size.

If were being honest, the thing has six laser cannons. Probably should’ve been Scums first 4 die primary, and a large ship.

Edited by sf1raptor

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The simple fact that every thinks they’ve faced the worst possible harpoon configuration and that all of them are different is proof that harpoons warp the game. 

 

Bad card, bad design. Why anyone thought “yeah, one card that can land anywhere from 4-7 damage on a single ship is a-ok” is beyond me. 

Edited by nikk whyte

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I agree that Harpoons are the strongest missile by a wide margin, and that they're warping the meta- but if they're nerfed, Rebels win everything, hands down. You simply cannot push enough damage off onto these crazy damage mitigation lists without something super-punchy like harpoons. I'd be fine with a harpoon nerf- but only if wookies/reinforce see a serious nerf as well.

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1 hour ago, thespaceinvader said:

Worst offender for harpoon is high ps imp alpha tbh

Same for Rebels.

I've faced the exact same rebel list on vassal 3 or 4 times now. 

Nym, Wedge, Airen all at ps10. 2 harpoons and a plasma.

At a minimum the condition shouldn't be allowed to stack. It really punishes jousting lists that need to fly together in order to focus fire.

It also shouldn't have a damage risk to remove it. The cost of an action is bad enough. 

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1 hour ago, nikk whyte said:

The simple fact that every thinks they’ve faced the worst possible harpoon configuration and that all of them are different is proof that harpoons warp the game. 

 

Bad card, bad design. Why anyone thought “yeah, one card that can land anywhere from 4-7 damage on a single ship is a-ok” is beyond me. 

And yet there's no sign at all that it's dominating the metagame as Asajj, Dash, Miranda and Lowhhrick seemingly continue to boss it about.

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2 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

I think at least Harpoon and possibly also Cruise should either [1] cost 1 point more with current text [2] spend the TL to shoot.

That's not a huge nerf, but I think it'd bring them in line with other ordnance.

They aren't necessarily too broken in game terms, they're just ahead of the cost curve relative to other missiles and torpedos.  If Homing and Harpoon cost the same, it'd be a case of whether you'd rather have splash, or whether you'd rather negate evade tokens.  A thoroughly reasonable meta-call.  Or if Harpoon were the same cost as Concussion but spent the TL, it'd be a case of weighing whether you want initial hit damage, or the condition.  Or 4 pt TL spending Harpoons compared to 5 point Assault would be whether you think you can follow them up in a timely order or want the immediacy of Assault.  There'd be more interesting list-building choices.  However, Harpoon as printed are simply the superior missile.  There's no real comparisons, and on top of things they're significantly more complicated on the table.  It's not too hard once you've got the hang of it, but it's just true that it's got the most complicated on-hit effects of any missile.

While I agree to some extent, the simple reality is that Harpoons are at a power level in the current meta where they are simply viable Tier 1 upgrades.

All of the missiles or Torpedoes you compared them to above (and in fact Every single other missile or torpedo) are either not good enough and have never been good enough for competitive play unless you could fit them the J5K chassis (which has now been proven busted with the torp slots removed). the only exceptions being Proton Rockets on a very small handful of ships in the past intermittently and now cruise missiles on a very few ships as well (somewhat intermittently)

Are Harpoons too powerful? Maybe, but the reality is that with the power creep in this game they are literally "Just Good enough"  to be consistently playable at a competitive level, at the moment the gunboats with Harpoons are the new hotness, so there's potentially a disproportionately larger number of 'Poon boats in the meta right now, so I'm not going to worry about them for another months or 2 and check to see if every winning list is rocking Harpoons.

 

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