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Biophysical

Do Reapers deserve the hate that Rebel Fenn Rau gets? Point-Counterpoint.

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Rebel Fenn is one of the most hated pilots in the game, according to me,  and perhaps others.  He provides max PS coordinate, can neuter 1-2 attacks per turn, and comes on a cheap chassis.  

Yet for a month and a half or so we've got a big grey Imperial brick headed our way that overlaps much of Fenn's capabilities.  While many people have been quick to acknowledge its power, there has been relatively little bile.  How should we feel about the Reaper, and why?  Does it deserve the animus reserved for Rebel Fenn, pre-nerf Jumpmasters, etc.?  

Let's find out:

1.)  The ability to shut down attacks.

Both ships have a trivial time nerfing 1-2 token-reliant attacks per turn.  Fenn's arc and R1, R2 in arc (during the activation phase) are both incredibly easy conditions to fulfill.  Fenn has the advantage of casting a larger net, and gets to make decisions later in the turn about who to effect, but the Reaper denies whole attack types (ordnance) and also takes those tokens away so they can't be saved for later.

I'd say these two abilities are not massively different in how much grief they give the opposing squad.

2.)  Coordinate. 

The Reaper can buy a crew to gain coordinate, Fenn has it build in at a very high PS.  Fenn's is straight up better, and has the ability to buff ships that are notably more expensive than Imperial choices.  

Fenn is a clear winner here.

3.)  Cost.

While the Reaper is certainly not expensive, the PS1 ship is still more expensive than PS11 Fenn even before crew that allow his abilities to be mimicked.  This cost comes with a superior chassis, but not one you'd buy if it didn't have Jam.  

4.)  Surrounding squad.

The Reaper is, of course, Imperial, so the ships surrounding it are Imperial.  This has an effect on how its capabilities interact with the rest of the squad.  Fenn can be surrounded by defensive ship which amplify his abilities.  The Reaper is alongside ships that are often defensive, but is not particularly durable on its own.  This makes it more of a Biggs effect than a whole squad preservation effect.  8 HP behind 2 AGI (if you spend for LWF) is certainly better at not dying than Biggs.  Then again, the ability to strip defensive tokens lets the Reaper maximize the offense of its squad, which can already be large in an offense heavy Imperial squad.

 

So are Reapers as bad as Fenn?  I'm likely biased, but I'm inclined to say no.  The higher cost and lack of defensive support makes the Reaper more palatable to play against.  That's not to say it's necessarily fun or fair, though.  

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It should be noted too, rebel Fenn doesn't do damage. He's incredibly annoying to play against ( I often pick him as the first target even if it's not tactically the correct decision because I hate him), but he often doesn't deal damage. But the reaper, on the other hand, especially with Vermeil and his guidance-chips ability, can dish out some serious damage. Even more so if it's carrying Krennic and getting target locks. That being said, jamming is much harder to trigger than simply getting someone in arc, especially with FAA. So it's a trade off, but I think the Reaper is appropriately costed for what it provides, while Fenn is undercosted. 

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Points 2 and 3 are so exacerbatedly in favor of Fenn its no contest.  

Fenn is one of the worst designs to ever come to this game and should never have been printed, and I maintain, still needs to be nerfed. PS7, and no EPT (still has the overpowered astro+crew combo). And even then, I would question if he's undercosted at THAT. What a dumb ship. 

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1 hour ago, Biophysical said:

So are Reapers as bad as Fenn?  I'm likely biased, but I'm inclined to say no.  The higher cost and lack of defensive support makes the Reaper more palatable to play against.  That's not to say it's necessarily fun or fair, though.  

1.0...

Edited by Boom Owl

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Short answer is no. 

The Reaper can be a real nuisance it’s true. The issue is it needs lots to get to that point. It’s also likely going to be 1/4-1/3 of a list. So it needs to contribute more especially if it’s costed in the 30ish point range. Fenn is 1/5 to at most 1/4 of a Rebel list. 

The overarching reality is in 1.0 the Reaper is not much more than a heavy striker with a slightly different gimmick. It certainly helps imperial list be better but it is not close to rebel synergies.

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The Reaper is the best incarnation of the design principles we have seen from the Rebels throughout 1.0

 

It's powerful, but it is limited by its arc, by PS, and by the faction itself.

But it looks like something the Rebels would have gotten. It has options and synergies with other upgrades, it is tanky and it can shoot well, and it has control options. It's a toolbox ship, that can move and shoot, and do stuff.

 

 

Rebel Rau (and Miranda, and Dash, and Rebel Nym) are the worst incarnation of the design principles shown from rebels.

They do all the things. High PS, maximum repositioning, turrets, regen, ignoring core concepts of the games. The problem is that they all have these things together, at once, paired with the ridiculous synergy and number of rebel crew upgrades.

 

So, yeah, the Reaper is kinda similar to Rebel ships, but nowhere near close to it. Even with the possible brokenness, it has several limiting factors, and does not have access to things like Regen.

 

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Fenn has two huge problems, IMHO.  1 is cost.  2 is Hotshot Copilot.

  1. He's just too **** cheap.  The cost efficiency of what he does is beyond anything reasonable.
  2. Fenn's ability, strong as it is, only impacts *ATTACK* dice modification.  HSCP and Jam impact *DEFENSE* dice modification, and that's where the really negative things happen, in my mind.  It's one thing to weaken an enemy ship's attack, have them only deal one damage instead of two or three.  I think it's a whole another level denying someone a defensive focus token and causing them to take two or three damage instead of one.  A 26 point ship with 2 red dice shouldn't be able to induce this much damage in a list.  Time will tell if Reaper Jam is as much of a problem as HSCP.

As to Reapers, I think I'm provisionally willing to say they aren't as bad as Fenn Rau, but that's not saying much, and could easily revise that position.  They've got lower PS and a single arc at a higher cost. so that's better. They fly really fast, which means they can easily outpace a squad and become easy prey.  Fenn Rau is often one of the slower ships in a list, and I guess he can get somewhat left behind, but this seems like a different sort of issue.

I can't automatically give Fenn an edge over Reapers in the defensive strength of Imperial ships.  While there are fewer defensive synergies such as Lowhhrick, most Rebel ships are comparatively low agility, and Imperials ships tend to have individual defensive strengths.  TIE/x7, for example, or the many Autothruster ships, or superior arc-dodging ships.  Maybe this makes Reapers easier early targets than their squadmates, while Fenn is... a mixed bag.  I've seen him survive a lot.  I've seen him die fast.

Edited by theBitterFig

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Reapers are not so bad to put up with if you fly Kylo. Oftentimes you can ignore them and take out the linchpin of the squad, or perhaps you could engage, but use high-mobility to keep back at R3, and after engagement tailgate so that the R1 out of arc jam is the only (and rare) jamming option. Fenn is always a #1 priority to remove and a pain-regardless of what you fly. Keep in mind that Fenn, at ultra PS with repositioning, only needs to look at a ship to neuter its offense and its defense (and he has a rear-arc). Also, I don't see reapers giving PS3 ships (that were designed with no EPT's so that the PS7 could not be bumped up to a 9) coordinated boosts at the highest point of reaction outside of Ahsoka's focus spending so that a masterful arc-dodge is completely made trivial in such a way that said PS3 ship receives no meaningful shot but deals a guaranteed 3 hits and 2 crits (which are one-shotting of many ships without that focus that Fenn stole).

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13 minutes ago, Ccwebb said:

I’m confused, what is so dangerous about the Reaper?  It’s a striker with crew... what build is scary?

It's a Striker that's much more durable, takes away your tokens with ISB Slicer Jam double-taps, and has a pilot who gets Guidance Chips on all shots against ships without tokens. Also, it can carry Krennic and Palp.

I've been playing this the past couple of game nights (courtesy @Brunas)

Major Vermeil + Veteran Instincts + Director Krennic + ISB Slicer + Lightweight Frame + Advanced Ailerons
The Inquisitor + Push the Limit + Authothrusters + TIE/v1
Scarif Base Pilot + Emperor Palpatine + Lightweight Frame + Advanced Ailerons

It's early days, but I'm undefeated so far and only 1 game (against Nym + Specialist + Strezra) was even remotely close -- and I still closed that out with a full-health Inquisitor. Easiest game was against Miri + Lowie + Strezra, in which copious use of the Jam action meant my opponent never once modified a dice outside of Ezra's ability.

Edited by DR4CO

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13 minutes ago, DR4CO said:

It's a Striker that's much more durable, takes away your tokens with ISB Slicer Jam double-taps, and has a pilot who gets Guidance Chips on all shots against ships without tokens. Also, it can carry Krennic and Palp.

I've been playing this the past couple of game nights (courtesy @Brunas)

Major Vermeil + Veteran Instincts + Director Krennic + ISB Slicer + Lightweight Frame + Advanced Ailerons
The Inquisitor + Push the Limit + Authothrusters + TIE/v1
Scarif Base Pilot + Emperor Palpatine + Lightweight Frame + Advanced Ailerons

It's early days, but I'm undefeated so far and only 1 game (against Nym + Specialist + Strezra) was even remotely close -- and I still closed that out with a full-health Inquisitor. Easiest game was against Miri + Lowie + Strezra, in which copious use of the Jam action meant my opponent never once modified a dice outside of Ezra's ability.

Is it that this list/ship is OP, or is it you're a good player, with a new list, that people are unfamiliar with how to counter? Seems like this list would crush any 3-ship Rebel variant which relies on sticking near Lowhhrick. Have you tried it against another top tier player flying a really manoeuvrable list like Dash + Miranda/Poe/etc, or a Kylo list?

I am yet to actually try out my reaper, but I just don't see the Reaper being as bonkers crazy as Fenn at neutering a squad. I could be wrong though, it happens a lot.

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1 hour ago, Ccwebb said:

I’m confused, what is so dangerous about the Reaper?  It’s a striker with crew... what build is scary?

The biggest thing is the versatility it has. You can outfit it into a heavy attacker, you can make it a control/support ship, or a solid flanker. 

I know I saw with denying actions and then having intelligence Agents at a local store championship people were struggling to decide on how to act and what to target. It’s fast enough like a striker to outmaneuver opponents forcing split fire at it or other ships. 

Striker Aces have interesting enough skills to hyper increase your utilization of the ships basic abilities in creative ways. Unlike many support ships, the Reaper can be a serious threat. It can go from Support to Attack just by taking a different action for itself vs denying a opponent. Stressed ships are just hosed if a Reaper can Jam it. Meaning ships that want to K-turn, Sloop, or Talon roll have to think about it. If your jammed before you move your now 2 or 3 turns without mods. It really makes your opponent think hard.

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1 hour ago, CRCL said:

Is it that this list/ship is OP, or is it you're a good player, with a new list, that people are unfamiliar with how to counter? Seems like this list would crush any 3-ship Rebel variant which relies on sticking near Lowhhrick. Have you tried it against another top tier player flying a really manoeuvrable list like Dash + Miranda/Poe/etc, or a Kylo list?

Hard to say at the moment; like I said, early days.

I have tried it against a good (if rusty) Dash + Miri, and holy crap did Inquis and Vermeil do a number on him once they lined him up. Your standard Lone Wolf + Rey Dash is super, super sad to see an ISB Slicer bearing down on him, not to mention an Inquisitor who has both an extra shield and doesn't need to spend his tokens for offence as much thanks to Optimised Prototype.

Kylo is next on the list to test against, but in theory the double-jam will be at least a little awkward for him. Optics is essentially turned off (unless he can somehow position to never let the Reapers get into jam range, which even for Kylo is a tall order), so if he wants dice mods he needs to reposition less, which can be exploited.

Edited by DR4CO

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As to the OP, rebels had stacks on stacks of synergies and chassis' that were way too cheap with way too many upgrades, and Fenn was just the latest in that long line. The Reaper has a couple elements that could be compared but nothing that comes close to a full rebel cancer list.

As to the list above, for those unwilling or unable to buy a 2nd Reaper, I offer the following for consideration (sorry, I know this isn't the squad list page but it's on topic).

Vermiel Inqy BD (100/100)
========================
TIE Reaper: Major Vermeil (26 + 10)
    + Veteran Instincts (1)
    + Director Krennic (5)
    + ISB Slicer (2)
    + Advanced Ailerons (0)
    + Lightweight Frame (2)
TIE Adv. Prototype: The Inquisitor (25 + 6)
    + Push the Limit (3)
    + TIE/v 1 (1)
    + Autothrusters (2)
TIE/SF Fighter: Backdraft (27 + 6)
    + Adaptability (0)
    + Fire Control System (2)
    + Advanced Optics (2)
    + Special Ops Training (0)
    + Lightweight Frame (2)

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The Reaper wishes it had **** on Rau

All of Rau's anti-mods come from action independent sources, letting him do whatever he wants (from bumping to ps 11 coordinate) and still benefitting so long as he gets arc

All of Rau's benefits can also be enjoyed simultaneously because his ability (and hotshot) isn't tied to his action

The Reaper's is

 

Edited by ficklegreendice

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45 minutes ago, DR4CO said:

Hard to say at the moment; like I said, early days.

I have tried it against a good (if rusty) Dash + Miri, and holy crap did Inquis and Vermeil do a number on him once they lined him up. Your standard Lone Wolf + Rey Dash is super, super sad to see an ISB Slicer bearing down on him, not to mention an Inquisitor who has both an extra shield and doesn't need to spend his tokens for offence as much thanks to Optimised Prototype.

Kylo is next on the list to test against, but in theory the double-jam will be at least a little awkward for him. Optics is essentially turned off (unless he can somehow position to never let the Reapers get into jam range, which even for Kylo is a tall order), so if he wants dice mods he needs to reposition less, which can be exploited.

Yeah I suppose Inquisitor has always been pretty good against Dash. Do you find Krennic's Reaper gets the free TL from the Inquisitor's shooting often? It doesn't seem too important to get that synergy given all the other stuff the condition gives.

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Just now, CRCL said:

Yeah I suppose Inquisitor has always been pretty good against Dash. Do you find Krennic's Reaper gets the free TL from the Inquisitor's shooting often? It doesn't seem too important to get that synergy given all the other stuff the condition gives.

Fairly often if they're hunting the same target, but you're right; it's easily the least important part of the condition.

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27 minutes ago, CRCL said:

Yeah I suppose Inquisitor has always been pretty good against Dash. Do you find Krennic's Reaper gets the free TL from the Inquisitor's shooting often? It doesn't seem too important to get that synergy given all the other stuff the condition gives.

I'll note the condition card doesn't say "other" and I'm totally planning on using it as a shield upgrade+FCS+autohit on a build. That gives me a solid offensive modding I don't need to spend actions for, so I can spend them on defense or officers or...

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6 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

 They fly really fast, which means they can easily outpace a squad and become easy prey. 

They are really fast, which means they can easily run away and avoid destruction.

 

Some of the posts here are a bit like "Cholera is totally fine, because the Plague is horrible".

Yes, undercosted PS9 EPT Fenn is total BS, as well as e.g. Tragedy Simulator and other c r ap.

But some of the 1.0 Reaper, 1.0 Krennic, 1.0 ISB slicer etc stuff looks dangerously close to real NPE as well. I guess, would 1.0 continue longer than early september, we probably would see some really obnoxious builds/squadron combos emerging.

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29 minutes ago, Polaritie said:

I'll note the condition card doesn't say "other" and I'm totally planning on using it as a shield upgrade+FCS+autohit on a build. That gives me a solid offensive modding I don't need to spend actions for, so I can spend them on defense or officers or...

Yeah he's a decent crew for whisper for that reason. It also frees up his system slot.

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