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DerRitter

Are Force Upgrades weak or expensive?

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I have been wondering if Force upgrades (FU) are too weak or too expensive. I started flying Republic a few days ago and find myself keeping the force slot unequipped on my Jedi. I did a quick search on mayor events on listfortress and could see only a few of the these in general use:

Hate (3 pts). Currently is the 22nd most used upgrade on according to listfortress and the most used FU. I believe is by far the best of all: first is cheap, second helps recover force instead of requiring you to spend it. It found his home in the Sith Infiltrator (low agi, high HP) and for some time in Vader, but then I found different opinions on its value compared to a larger bid.

Supernatural Reflexes (varies): The formerly crowned jewel of upgrades now is almost unseen it. The point nerf pretty much killed it, excepting some extremely expensive Kylos and some crazy builds 24+ points is just too much. I admit I'm biased here, as SN Luke was the most fun I had with Rebels in 2.0, but now at base 86 points I just can't find how to build a list around him. I understand that a nerf was necessary, but maybe they went too far? I have heard of some people theorizing about SN Inquisitors, but haven't ever seen in play.

Sense (6 pts): This is designed to help lower Initiative pilots, unfortunately, the only low In force pilots only have one force and often require it to use their own abilities (like fine-tuned controls on the Jedi Knights). High In force pilots are already pretty expensive to play support and need their force to earn his points back. Still, this upgrade does sometimes see table.

Predictive shot (4 pts): uff bullseye and requires a force to activate. I could see it on Anakin or Kylo (high In double reposition), but first I need to not having used my force to mod the attack dice and even then I'm depleting my force charges for a very conditional effect.

Brilliant Evasion (4 pts): I find this one just bad, You need to have 2 eyeballs AND have 2 uncancelled hits before this is better than just using a regular force point. Also, don't have a focus token. ¿Maybe in a stealth device delta-7?

Heightened Perception (3 pts):  For only 3 points I can shoot first in the round. Now I see some utility here for low ini force pilots, but those already are struggling with force points and you have to give up a dice mod.

Instinctive Aim (2 pts): just take a Lock and there are no low In force pilots that can carry good ordinance (aka torpedos)

Battle Meditation (varies): I REALLY want to find a list to use this upgrade. In theory, looks great: you trade 1 action and 1 force point for 2 actions on some torrents or arcs. In practice, the cheapest carrier would be a 49 Jedi Knight (with no configuration). It's is just too expensive for a support ship! and once I start looking at more expensive pilots  I wonder why give him a support talent? 

 

So, after looking at all the force upgrades I find that they are either too amazing but too expensive (Supernatural Reflexes) or not worth the points compared with the basic use of the Force. This is even worse considering that all pilot with force has to also spend it to activate their own pilot skills.

 

I would like to hear your opinions on the Force Upgrades. For those that don't agree with me please show me some builds that could use them and if you agree with do you believe there is a point level where this would be useful or are most of them almost jamming beam material?*

 

*By jamming beam material I mean that even free, they are so situational that you would almost never use them instead of having the force token available to mod dice.

 

 

 

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4 minutes ago, DerRitter said:

Sense (6 pts): This is designed to help lower Initiative pilots, unfortunately, the only low In force pilots only have one force and often require it to use their own abilities (like fine-tuned controls on the Jedi Knights). High In force pilots are already pretty expensive to play support and need their force to earn his points back. Still, this upgrade does sometimes see table.

I've said elsewhere that I think Sense has some potential to be game-breaking (as we see more cards released).   It's not only good on Low I pilots, since a high I pilot (especially one with three force) can carry it and then use it to assist other low I pilots in the list.   It's also one of the few that doesn't need a force in every situation.

Otherwise, I'm with you on most of them.  They cost points and then often cost a force to use.   Predictive Shot is basically the paragon of bad design in force powers, requiring three conditions to be met in order to activate it (Force, Bullseye, Hits<Defense Dice).   It should basically be free, and even then don't think it would trigger all that much.

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Brilliant Evasion is 6 points for most of the pilots as it has variable cost.

But so far

Hate is cool, used it even on Grand Inquisitor and it helped him survive for like 2 rounds more because of force regen.

SNR is just too expensive to take most of the time. But Ini3 Inquisitor with this can be a beast, with 3 actions per turn, repo and super dial.

Sense can be usable but I don't see myself really using it.

Predictive shot is just useless as you have to use it before rolling dice and it counts on you rolling badly.

Brilliant Evasion looks good on paper, not that great in use, but can be really useful when you take TL or whatever and roll two eyeballs on defence just to spend one force. But I would like it to drop i bit.

Hightened Perception is great if you ask me. I run Windu/Saesee/Luminara with it as triple ace list and it works good.

Instinctive Aim, is not just about taking a lock but actually shooting at someone else in case the ship you locked gets out of arc or whatever. Make yourself a bigger threat by having the opportunity to target anyone.

Battle Meditation works well, could be cheaper, but worked well when I have tried it. 

 

As for all force talents and even force using pilots is that everything wants you to spend force. When you have 3 force it is much easier, but for most of them having 2 force... having to spend force for your Pilot Ability and Force Talent? Nope... yes if you are Windu and can do a red maneuver next turn. 

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39 minutes ago, DerRitter said:

Predictive shot (4 pts): uff bullseye and requires a force to activate. I could see it on Anakin or Kylo (high In double reposition), but first I need to not having used my force to mod the attack dice and even then I'm depleting my force charges for a very conditional effect.

 

Mace Windu could be a candidate for this as well. The i4 makes it tougher to line up bullseye, but he usually is OK spending extra Force since he has a way to regen it without Hate.

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Predictive Shot needs to have its activation window moved/errata from "after you declare an attack" to the Modify Attack Dice step, then it would be very worthwhile.

Brilliant Evasion needs to be like Heroic cheap, then it would be possible worth it at 1pts for insurance against multiple shots with a 3 die agility ship if you didn't have plans for a Force Ability on a particular ship already. 

Hate is in a pretty nice place.

SNR got hit a little too hard by the nerf bat, it needs to come back down a bit. 

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Posted (edited)

kinda interested in perception with the assistance of sinker. A character like Mace, giver of no ****s, has force to spare and he can focus to make up for the forcus he spends while Sinker handles the rerolls

problem is you really want a high I barrage instead of just one guy, who can be clutch but probably wont obliterate fools before they blink

with jedi, you can only get two cool dudes and sinker. Probably not getting TOO much work done with two I7s, but who knows?

(192)

fill out as you see fit

Mace Windu — Delta-7 Aethersprite 46
Heightened Perception 3
R2 Astromech 4
Delta-7B 16
Ship Total: 69
Half Points: 35 Threshold: 3
   
Ahsoka Tano — Delta-7 Aethersprite 47
Heightened Perception 3
R2 Astromech 4
Delta-7B 15
Ship Total: 69
Half Points: 35 Threshold: 3
   
“Sinker” — ARC-170 Starfighter 54
Ship Total: 54

Half Points: 27 Threshold: 5
 

 

Ahsoka mainly because idk who else? Lumie?

No need to use Soka's ability on approach because sinker.

 

alternative is two jedi knight generics, sinker, and a goldie but...eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh

Edited by ficklegreendice

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I love Sense, especially pairing it with Phoenix Squadron Intimidate A-Wings.  Considering it doesn’t always cost a Force, I believe 6 points is actually pretty fairly costed.  The important question when considering Sense, is “How am I going to capitalize on this information?”

I think it’s far better used to block a specific enemy ship.  Trying to use it on an arc dodging ace probably doesn’t work well.

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The worst part about Supernatural Reflexes is that, even at 24 and 32 points, it's still a better choice for Jedi to bring than a V-19. Seems like a mistake on FFG's part though, as "122 point Anakin points fortress" is now something that people need to be prepared for and you can't just bring Wedge with Torps to kill it like Kylo or Luke.

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1 hour ago, UndeadCrusader said:

SNR is just too expensive to take most of the time. But Ini3 Inquisitor with this can be a beast, with 3 actions per turn, repo and super dial.

Sense can be usable but I don't see myself really using it.

I ran SNR on a pair of Jedi Knights with Delta-7B and R4s. It may bit have been the most efficient use of 128 points but it was amazingly fun to play. Sense Saesee crops up and looks interesting but I haven't had the opportunity to fly it yet.

I will say Brilliant Evasion has potential but needs to come down a bit. The fact that it still costs two points for a one evade ship is ... odd ... but I suppose they have to factor in the chance someone might take stealth device is that situation. Maybe drop its cost equal to the base number of green dice.

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Posted (edited)

I definitely have an issue with the way force upgrades compete with the pilot's ability for resources.  It's one thing to have the option between pilot ability and the natural force effect, but when you are spending points just to add further versatility at existing resource cost AND taking the opportunity cost of an EPT slot that doesn't compete for force charges it seems a bit off.  It doesn't help that most force powers are pretty situationally useful,  most of the time I find myself wishing I could just take predator/outmaneuver/juke instead.

Supernatural reflexes is the exception but it should probably not have been made for the sake of the game's health, so keeping it more or less priced out of its most optimal uses is probably for the best.

Edited by Effenhoog

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Agree completely with Effenhoog.  I wish you could take an Elite OR a force ability.  Some pilots might like both.  In general I'm fairly underwhelmed by the force abilities.  It's probably one of the reasons I rarely play force users...  That and they're expensive and I prefer to have more ships (I almost always choose quantity over quality).

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Posted (edited)

These are the ones I have found useful and correctly costed for various builds: ( 5 of 7 )

  • Hate
  • Instinctive Aim
  • Supernatural Reflexes
  • Sense
  • Heightened Perception ( Less useful than the others but less of a meme than people think it is ). 

Force Users as a general rule are already pretty cheap. Luke 62, Kylo 76, Vader 65, Anakin 78, Obi 70, Rey 80, Assaj 76. They all basically have Expertise that works on Offense & Defense and while stressed. Thats before you consider their native Pilot Abilities and Ship Abilities. Not every upgrade slot needs to be game changing. In fact some are better off being somewhat restrictive ( i.e. Modification & Missiles ). I think Force Upgrades need to feel constrained because of the ships that have access to them.  

Edited by Boom Owl

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Posted (edited)

having force abilities compete with pilot abilities is a great idea

that's kinda the entire point of resource management, making some ****** decisions!

problem is the game is still awash with pilots with access to a lot of easy synergy that renders such decision-making a flaw rather than the norm
 

the prequel stuff is generally MUCH better about this relative to the translated first ed stuff...

even when they do an (imo) amazing job, such as stygium array (spend evade OR recloak), is kinda undone by stuff like juke and/or whisper

Edited by ficklegreendice

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Posted (edited)

Here's how I break it down:

  • Very Bad: Predictive Shot is a trash-tier effect.  Roll 3 hits, and Brilliant Evasion is useless.  Roll 2 hits, and it'll only be useful against 3-green ships, but not *that* useful.  Most 3-green ships have some form of dice modification (even if just saved tokens).  Roll 1 hit, and maybe it does something.  But probably not.  It's just so very bad, almost no more hits get through to a target as a result of this.  Consider also: most large and medium base ships, the kind it's easier to get Bullseye on, are low-agility ships, so it won't do anything.
  • Overpriced, but not a bad effect: Brilliant Evasion just costs too much.  I had decent-enough hopes for it as a reasonable pick when just looking to fill a slot, but it costs at least twice what it should.  At 0/1/2/3--a point per agility--I wouldn't be surprised to see it here and there, but even that might be too expensive.  As is, I can't imagine wanting it more than bid.  However, if it's too cheap (1 point), it becomes an automatic talent, and I wouldn't really like that.
  • Maybe Overpriced, But Probably It Should Be Overpriced: Supernatural Reflexes.  The header expresses it all.  An edition in which SNR is too cheap is far worse than an edition in which SNR is too expensive.  Battle Meditation might fit here, but that's also good.  Access to high-Init Coordinate should be expensive.
  • Fine: Instinctive Aim (it's not super strong right now, but it's dirt cheap), Heightened Perception (fair for what it does), Sense (a lot of folks who use it seem to really enjoy it).
  • Maybe a bit too cheap: Hate.  I've come around to thinking this should scale with something.   Probably force rating, since HP would be too complex.  Nearly an auto-include on a lot of ships, because it's both very cheap and pretty decent.  Also spending force willy-nilly because you know you'll get it back when you take damage trivializes the resource management aspect of the force which keeps it fair.

One thing I love is that the force talents mostly aren't auto-includes.  Like regular talents, the Force Talents have their niche uses, or can be leveraged by someone who has thought about them and has a reason in mind for playing them.  But you don't just grab one for no reason and expect powerful things.  I think this is good for the game in general, since mere access to force charges is stronger than nearly any regular talent.

//

The force talent I'd add: Inner CalmLight-side only.  Action: Regain 1 force charge.  Not a very powerful action, but on some support Jedi, it might be better to go up an extra force rather than to use an action for a focus or lock.  Or maybe you've just wound up in a safe position without a shot, but want to get your offensive Jedi ready for next round.  It'd feel good for there to be some sort of reverse-image of Hate for the good factions.  It makes sense for Dark Side pilots to trade their own life and body for more power.  A version of Inner Calm such as this would allow a Light-side pilot to trade other advantages (such as movement actions or tokens) for deeper access to the force.

Edited by theBitterFig

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

kinda interested in perception with the assistance of sinker. A character like Mace, giver of no ****s, has force to spare and he can focus to make up for the forcus he spends while Sinker handles the rerolls

problem is you really want a high I barrage instead of just one guy, who can be clutch but probably wont obliterate fools before they blink

with jedi, you can only get two cool dudes and sinker. Probably not getting TOO much work done with two I7s, but who knows?

The thing I keep thinking about Heightened Perception: it probably doesn't matter on Round 1 of actual combat, but it starts to seem powerful on Round 2, when you've already softened up a target and now want to leverage any early damage on it into a kill.

It also highlights the fact that most force-using ships can probably survive round 1, with a full stack of force charges and maybe a range bonus, but once you're at range 1 instead of range 3, without spare force charges, it gets a bit harder to survive.  As such, the defensive need for an Init-kill can be real.

As to the specific list, what seems cool about Ahsoka with Sinker is that she might be able to get *him* a reroll.  I don't think there's a lot of stuff in the game that Mace+Ahsoka are going to kill in one round of fire (it can happen, though), but as I've been saying, HP really boosts second-strike capabilities.

Edited by theBitterFig

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The main problem with force upgrades, other than competing with force abilities, is that it competes with offense and defensive mods. If force could only be used defensively, then force upgrades would probably see more play. But having it be both offensive and defensive mods, its hard to justify an force upgrade over simply just changing an eyeball to a hit or evade, as that is about as good as it gets and what everyone wants (other than blanks to hits and evades). So Force upgrades like Hate that just give you more force (for more hits and evades) is always going to be popular, followed by the ones that give you repositioning or ability to get more shots (SNR and Sense).

 

SNR - priced right. This game sucks when everyone flies SNR. I like it being so **** expensive that only the good or the brave will use it.

Sense - Priced right. Again, not fun if everyone flies it. 6pts keeps it out of only the dedicated lists. Im using it on Vader with Reapers and they can block and even arc dodge higher PS ships with Sense. Its free at range 1. In one game I used it 5 times and only paid for it once. Great upgrade, good cost.

Heightened Perception - Good when you use it. Like on Vader, you can straight up joust a 1 or 2 hull wedge and not worry about simultaneous fire when you kill him. But, for those times you fly against low initiative lists, its a wasted upgrade. I think the cost is right, maybe 2pts would be better just to not compete against Hate.

Predictive shot - should be 1pt. It has its uses. Range 3 through a rock and a ship may just be rolling 1 die if you roll 1 hit.  Instead of Guri or Soontir getting 5 dice, they get 1 green. Requires bullseye and a crappy roll. You have to use it before you roll, and that is a major downer.

Brilliant Evasion is hot garbage until we get a force user that can add an eyeball or turn a blank to an eyeball when defending, then we will all be crying for a nerf.

Hate is good. Requires bad things to trigger (you taking damage), so I think its priced right.

Instinctive aim has its uses. Generic force users with 4 dice missile attacks will make it a problem, so lets not go there please, FFG!

 

 

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The problem with force powers is that the default use of a force point is often better than the opportunity cost of the points paid into the ability on the force upgrades (Supernatural Reflexes aside). Hate is great specifically because it lets you do that more but otherwise, nail on the head the force point is better used elsewhere

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6 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

The force talent I'd add: Inner CalmLight-side only.  Action: Regain 1 force charge.  Not a very powerful action, but on some support Jedi, it might be better to go up an extra force rather than to use an action for a focus or lock.  Or maybe you've just wound up in a safe position without a shot, but want to get your offensive Jedi ready for next round.  It'd feel good for there to be some sort of reverse-image of Hate for the good factions.  It makes sense for Dark Side pilots to trade their own life and body for more power.  A version of Inner Calm such as this would allow a Light-side pilot to trade other advantages (such as movement actions or tokens) for deeper access to the force.

I like this version. Another thematic thing would be "Cannot use force on attack rolls, recharge 2 force per round." Or on blue maneuvers. Something for support Jedi. 

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  • Hate is fine where it is.
  • Sense probably is too, maybe drop it to 5 points
  • I think they went a little overboard with Supernatural Reflexes. 6/8/16/24 would make it playable but not overwhelming.
  • Heightened Perception is a niche card which has its uses. I'd leave it where it is.
  • Same with Instinctive Aim. I used to run it on Inquisitors back when Homing Missiles were 3 points, and it was pretty decent. Like HP and Sense, this one is just waiting for an interesting pilot interaction.
  • Brilliant Evasion and Predictive Shot are both terrible. Extremely conditional and likely only to trigger 0-1 times per game. The closest comparison would be to Heroic, and they should be priced like Heroic as well.
  • I'm unsure about Battle Meditation, as it's a fairly complicated card with lots of possible interactions. I think the pricing in a vacuum is probably fine, but it's waiting for that obvious fit ship/pilot wise.

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With force being strong in and of itself, I think access to EPTs on these pilots would verge on broken in some cases. The current balance of weak/expensive/situational force abilities seems decent to me.

I don't think the pricing is quite right on them, in line with what others have said, but I'm fine with them requiring a lot of thought to make decent use of, overall.

Anecdotally, friend of mine ran Heightened Perception Mace and 4 Torrents against me. I had I3, 4 and 5. His HP attack did some decent work, just stripping a token off of my I4 or 5 before they fired, saving his Torrents from a couple modded R1 shots. As well as giving Mace a shot before Vader killed him, in another game. Definitely value to be had in it apart from Init kills.

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2 hours ago, Cuz05 said:

With force being strong in and of itself, I think access to EPTs on these pilots would verge on broken in some cases. The current balance of weak/expensive/situational force abilities seems decent to me.

I don't think the pricing is quite right on them, in line with what others have said, but I'm fine with them requiring a lot of thought to make decent use of, overall.

Anecdotally, friend of mine ran Heightened Perception Mace and 4 Torrents against me. I had I3, 4 and 5. His HP attack did some decent work, just stripping a token off of my I4 or 5 before they fired, saving his Torrents from a couple modded R1 shots. As well as giving Mace a shot before Vader killed him, in another game. Definitely value to be had in it apart from Init kills.

Mace and Dooku are pretty decent with HP, and if she drops a little it might see play on Ventress too. Basically mid initiative pilots with 2+ force points that aren't all spent on abilities (which rules out Luminara and probably Seventh Sister). I didn't see play before Wave III because there were weren't any (good) pilot matches for it, but I'm pretty sure it'll hit the table occasionally now. I think the same will be true for Instinctive Aim and Battle Meditation eventually.

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13 hours ago, ThinkingB said:

The worst part about Supernatural Reflexes is that, even at 24 and 32 points, it's still a better choice for Jedi to bring than a V-19. Seems like a mistake on FFG's part though, as "122 point Anakin points fortress" is now something that people need to be prepared for and you can't just bring Wedge with Torps to kill it like Kylo or Luke.

122 points?  Drop afterburners and make whatever droid you put on him an R2.  Then 3 Gold Squadron Troopers for chaff/blocking, and enjoy your 11 point bid.  

If you are fortressing, you want regen, and the corner case where you want afterburners (a boost after a k-turn to set up Anakin’s stress removal? Which you can do with Fine Tuned Controls already?) doesn’t counter just having a huge bid.

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