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Blail Blerg

How do you ensure you prioritize win condition ships first if your opponent screens them with the rest of their force (semi-threatening cannon-fodder)?

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I had a game Whisper + 5 AP ties vs 7 ship Drea swarm. 5 APs set up middle and left, Drea swarm starts mostly on the right side, Whisper gets plopped down far left corner. Rocks are kinda in the middle. 

Start of game, Imperial player pushes the ties 5 forward and 3 slight to Drea's left to consolidate its force on one flank. Whisper stays safely but in firing range behind the APs. Result: The ties are now gumming up the board at Init1, and are really close (getting multiplicative R1 extra dice), and shooting or getting to bump or tractor Whisper involves running through this giant screening field.  

Now, its pretty valid to talk about how to better set up vs this, though frankly, I was thinking as Drea to avoid trying to head-on tackle the Ties. However....

How do you ensure that you're going to be able to start focusing on killing Whisper in a timely enough manner that you won't be suffering also non-sustainable damage from the Ties or standard return fire in the meantime? 

Assume that the Imperial player is generally considered the better player (than you), but still capable of losing and or making mistakes. 
(I have no interest in reiterating how to kill players worse than I, I want to learn to beat players who are far stronger.) 

 

More context: 

33 minutes ago, Icelom said:

Why is your fleet clumped into 1 giant group to be easily jammed up by the ties?

Spread out, you want him to split fire while you consolidate fire, therefore you need to close in from several angles all at once (it's hard). Make sure your formations can't easily be cascade blocked (bumping into your own blocked ships) so very loose.

Lastly you out gun him locally, just plow there the ties whisper can't do to much while you chew his support to death. (She only has 3 dice)

Basically you have to outfly him.... There is no magic trick to beating a better player, you need to become the better player.

It wasn't. It was in a large concave... which actually kind of made things worse, Whisper and the ties picked off a side and then Drea. 

 

I don't think you understand the question, I'm not asking for some magic trick. I'm literally asking for the theory on how to defeat this certain aspect of play that makes me a worse player than I am. (For you also: the caveat I added about better players is to avoid people also giving out simple stupid answers that work against brain-dead opponents) 

 

This is a strategy question, and as such, its long, and doesn't expect an easy answer. But asks to see if there be those willing to educate the rest of us on advanced tactics. It also assumes that for the rest of our play, we're playing at a high level. 

Edited by Blail Blerg

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Similar issue occurs where Rebel player deploys Luke with R2 out far on the other flank. If you chase luke, he simply runs and regens. If you ignore Luke, he comes in for his Proton Torpedo blast from far range, using the closed S-foils to boost close. 

Rest of squad could be like Wedge + Uwing/Auzituck, or Wedge + 2Zs, something not very fun to attack either. 

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Why is your fleet clumped into 1 giant group to be easily jammed up by the ties?

Spread out, you want him to split fire while you consolidate fire, therefore you need to close in from several angles all at once (it's hard). Make sure your formations can't easily be cascade blocked (bumping into your own blocked ships) so very loose.

Lastly you out gun him locally, just plow there the ties whisper can't do to much while you chew his support to death. (She only has 3 dice)

Basically you have to outfly him.... There is no magic trick to beating a better player, you need to become the better player.

Edited by Icelom

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Don't engage on your opponents terms. So many people just accept that they will fly forwards and deal with whatever the opponent gives them. If you really need to kill a Sloane carrier (or whatever other priority target you're facing), feint going into their kill box, but turn out and go the long way around. You might get a good engagement on that target in a couple of turns. 

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33 minutes ago, Icelom said:

Why is your fleet clumped into 1 giant group to be easily jammed up by the ties?

Spread out, you want him to split fire while you consolidate fire, therefore you need to close in from several angles all at once (it's hard). Make sure your formations can't easily be cascade blocked (bumping into your own blocked ships) so very loose.

Lastly you out gun him locally, just plow there the ties whisper can't do to much while you chew his support to death. (She only has 3 dice)

Basically you have to outfly him.... There is no magic trick to beating a better player, you need to become the better player.

It wasn't. It was in a large concave... which actually kind of made things worse, Whisper and the ties picked off Drea. 

 

I don't think you understand the question, I'm not asking for some magic trick. I'm literally asking for the theory on how to defeat this certain aspect of play that makes me a worse player than I am. (For you also: the caveat I added about better players is to avoid people also giving out simple stupid answers that work against brain-dead opponents) 

 

This is a strategy question, and as such, its long, and doesn't expect an easy answer. But asks to see if there be those willing to educate the rest of us on advanced tactics. It also assumes that for the rest of our play, we're playing at a high level. 

 

Copying all of this to the top. 

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16 minutes ago, Crit Happens said:

Don't engage on your opponents terms. So many people just accept that they will fly forwards and deal with whatever the opponent gives them. If you really need to kill a Sloane carrier (or whatever other priority target you're facing), feint going into their kill box, but turn out and go the long way around. You might get a good engagement on that target in a couple of turns. 

Can you elaborate on how to extend this engagement? I've seen players try this to very ill effect against me. I just push hard and start dealing damage while his guns are facing the wrong way trying to redo his engagement. The only time I've seen this work is a bait and flank via rebel regen, and that's a different matter because that's a statistical mathematical leverage as opposed to a purely movement dictated issue. It seems that this tactic is easily countered by your opponent also making similar adjustments. Which is notably opposite to the problem at hand, where its not easy to make simple adjustments to counteract the screening effect. 

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9 minutes ago, Blail Blerg said:

It wasn't. It was in a large concave... which actually kind of made things worse, Whisper and the ties picked off Drea. 

 

I don't think you understand the question, I'm not asking for some magic trick. I'm literally asking for the theory on how to defeat this certain aspect of play that makes me a worse player than I am. (For you also: the caveat I added about better players is to avoid people also giving out simple stupid answers that work against brain-dead opponents) 

 

This is a strategy question, and as such, its long, and doesn't expect an easy answer. But asks to see if there be those willing to educate the rest of us on advanced tactics. It also assumes that for the rest of our play, we're playing at a high level. 

 

Copying all of this to the top. 

If you are going to **** on my "theory to defeat this".... then I guess my advice is to get good.

My advice to spread out and don't let him focus a single ship you said you completed this by letting him focus all his fire on your most important ship.... not sure what else I can say. Drea needs to come in behind your forces be at range to engage 1-2 of them allowing your forces to all focus on those 1 or 2 with dreas bonus while drea can only get hit back by those 1 or 2 (hopefully they are dead).

Literally what you need to do is fly better that is the solution.

Edited by Icelom

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1 minute ago, Icelom said:

If you are going to **** on my "theory to defeat this".... then I guess my advice is to get good.

My advice to spread out and don't let him focus a single ship you said you completed this by letting him focus all his fire on your most important ship.... not sure what else I can say. Drea needs to come in behind your forces be at range to engage of 1-2 of them allowing your forces to all focus on those 1 or 2 with dreas bonus while drea can only get hit back by those 1 or 2 (hopefully they are dead).

Literally what you need to do is fly better that is the solution.

You're so amazing. Wow. I never thought of that! 

FYI,  this was a test game, and written intentionally to not show that. But I've been both the Scum and Imperial player on this test matchup. So, I'll just have to git gudder than myself. 

What a waste of breath. 

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2 minutes ago, TheHumanHydra said:

Oh, don't argue, guys. It was a good question, of a kind I wish we'd see more of, and a good answer, just maybe not exactly the right answer yet. I'd like to see an interesting discussion continue amicably.

Doesn't matter.

he should never be able to beat whisper in a game where he controls both sides, whisper with perfect knowledge of the opposition side should never lose with skills being equal. (and they are if you are playing yourself)

There is no advice that can help, and he clearly does not want to listen to anyone trying to give him any anyways.

It is to bad because it was a good question and could have had some good discussion... but sadly that's not going to happen.

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I don't have Vassal installed, or I might try and set up a diagram. That might help a lot, as we could start talking about the specific maneuvers each player should be dialing in. After that, maybe we could generalize. ('Fly better' is too easy to say: this would demonstrate what that means.)

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1 minute ago, TheHumanHydra said:

I don't have Vassal installed, or I might try and set up a diagram. That might help a lot, as we could start talking about the specific maneuvers each player should be dialing in. After that, maybe we could generalize. ('Fly better' is too easy to say: this would demonstrate what that means.)

Yes that was a poor use of words after my advice was dismissed out of hand, as he had already done it and was clearly obvious to do..... apparently he executed my advice flawlessly and it should not even be considered as it is useless for this situation... 

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2 hours ago, Blail Blerg said:

I had a game Whisper + 5 AP ties vs 7 ship Drea swarm. 5 APs set up middle and left, Drea swarm starts mostly on the right side, Whisper gets plopped down far left corner. Rocks are kinda in the middle. 

Start of game, Imperial player pushes the ties 5 forward and 3 slight to Drea's left to consolidate its force on one flank. Whisper stays safely but in firing range behind the APs. Result: The ties are now gumming up the board at Init1, and are really close (getting multiplicative R1 extra dice), and shooting or getting to bump or tractor Whisper involves running through this giant screening field.  

 

More context: 

It wasn't. It was in a large concave... which actually kind of made things worse, Whisper and the ties picked off a side and then Drea. 

Just so I understand: which way did your formation go as your 'opponent' went down your left side of the board? And, by concave, you mean Pacman-eating-opponent, right?

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Given your build, you might be forced to wait quite a while before being presented with a good opportunity to hurt Whisper, so I think you just have to focus on concentrating fire on the Academies and using your double mods to make good trades in the initial combat. Since you're flying ships that move slowly and predictably at low initiative, you don't have that much control - you're mostly playing defense and waiting for an opportunity to open up. I'd also keep in mind that in a match with 6 ships vs. 7 ships, you're probably not going to get that many combat rounds completed in 75 minutes. So killing or even getting half health off of Whisper might not be your win condition - it might just be putting more damage in on the Academies before time is called.

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3 hours ago, Icelom said:

Spread out, you want him to split fire while you consolidate fire, therefore you need to close in from several angles all at once (it's hard). Make sure your formations can't easily be cascade blocked (bumping into your own blocked ships) so very loose.

Lastly you out gun him locally, just plow there the ties whisper can't do to much while you chew his support to death. (She only has 3 dice)

Basically you have to outfly him.... There is no magic trick to beating a better player, you need to become the better player.

 

3 hours ago, Blail Blerg said:

 

I don't think you understand the question, I'm not asking for some magic trick. I'm literally asking for the theory on how to defeat this certain aspect of play that makes me a worse player than I am. (For you also: the caveat I added about better players is to avoid people also giving out simple stupid answers that work against brain-dead opponents) 

 

This is a strategy question, and as such, its long, and doesn't expect an easy answer. But asks to see if there be those willing to educate the rest of us on advanced tactics. It also assumes that for the rest of our play, we're playing at a high level.

@Icelomgave you an accurate answer.  You engage the TIEs while Whisper is hanging out in back.  This can require you to go slowly and be wary of the blocks.  There shluld be a variety of formations available (depending on astsroid placement) where you can engage most of your ships into the leading TIE Fighters, but a Whisper that is set further back cannot engage your ships without coming forward.  Figuring out those formations based on tje current board position can be hard, but it's possible. 

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7 hours ago, Transmogrifier said:

Given your build, you might be forced to wait quite a while before being presented with a good opportunity to hurt Whisper, so I think you just have to focus on concentrating fire on the Academies and using your double mods to make good trades in the initial combat. Since you're flying ships that move slowly and predictably at low initiative, you don't have that much control - you're mostly playing defense and waiting for an opportunity to open up. I'd also keep in mind that in a match with 6 ships vs. 7 ships, you're probably not going to get that many combat rounds completed in 75 minutes. So killing or even getting half health off of Whisper might not be your win condition - it might just be putting more damage in on the Academies before time is called.

By my experience with MANY swarm deathmatches, I agree wholeheartedly. 

Game time simply evaporates after engagement when both players are trying to dial up the optimal moves. 

You're not gonna even HAVE an endgame in this matchup most times.... ESPECIALLY if one player feints the engagement and tries to come around another way. 

I've had games where it was literally 2-3 rounds of fire and that was it.

Don't go hail-mary for the Ace... It could backfire. 

Eat up those generics and hope you get decent dice. As a Rebel, I usually forgo focus and just lock with everything I can. Let the shields do my defense work, and invest in the most reliable offence possible (especially Y-Wings... Never focus with a Y). 

That's my two cents. 

Edited by Bucknife

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13 hours ago, Transmogrifier said:

you're probably not going to get that many combat rounds completed in 75 minutes. 

 

6 hours ago, Bucknife said:

You're not gonna even HAVE an endgame in this matchup most times.

 

Why are you guys assuming this is a tournament setting?

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If you are playing a 2 hour or untimed match, the advice still stands - it's going to take a while before you can get to Whisper unless your opponent hands her to you, so you're going to want to focus fire on Academies and get ships off the board quickly to create a firepower imbalance and then use whatever you have left to try and catch Whisper when she makes a mistake.

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I think its fair also to give advice based on tourney time. These were meant to be test matches for competitive play. 

But I would love some advice too on how to beat this not simply based on time. 

 

Yeah, during that game Drea swarm made a concave against some of the ties at the far end of the Imperial blob. Imperial blob kind of focused down the far flank and Drea over the next two turns, using the ties to slowly but steady plink Drea down. Whisper was in the back, IN RANGE, but usually R2 or R3 compared to many ties getting into R1 and R2. 

Edited by Blail Blerg

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Without having a copy of either list to look at, my advice would be that, as the Drea player going second, set yourself up on an edge but with an easy line with which to joust the TAP’s that we’re set up first.

If the TAP’s goal is to move first and block, then using the rule of 11 in a simple joust can help to counteract that to a degree. Also, since its more or less obvious from the get-go that Whisper doesn’t want to be head on in the joust, you can predict that they’ll be placed as far from the formation as possible and therefore can give yourself some distance between them, elongating her flank.

but the core of my advice is just to play on the most basic principles of  X-Wing combat, joust part of their list with all of yours. This is much much easier said than done, but in an ideal world, with whisper taking longer to flank and with the TAP’s gunning it forward and moving to gunk up the space-lanes, you should be able to straight joust the TAP’s with the entire imperial list to decent effect.

the main issues I imagine would be that whisper is an excellent flanker and can cover the board very fast or that the TAP’s kite and let whisper have at the Drea swarm since they can turn out pretty easily and boost with mods.

the best way I imagine to facilitate this “all on part” engagement would be to move slowly from your corner and drag whisper through the rocks while using the rule of 11 to engage the enemy at range 2 or 3 with th entirety of the list. A more box-like formation may be better to focus firepower but does leave you liable to be gunned up on the next round by the TAPs.

 

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