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Andylicious

Optimal BT Avenger setup

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Lets talk BT Avenger. 

So I have been list building and looking at a Kuat BT Avenger paired with a Cymoon with Darth Vader as commander. I sat down with my list and a hypothetical enemy Star Destroyer with ECM I double arced it with the Kuat, parked the Cymoon at long range and started firing. 

I tried different setups for the BT Avenger. External racks and leading shots seemed to be able to get 5 damage through to hull reliably but not much more. Front and side shields are down, ECM is exhausted, Brace might be ready when the Cymoon attacks. The Cymoon doesn't kill it. ACM seems to be able to do a little better than LS+Rax. HIE+Rax is better as well, but I can't seem to kill the ISD in a turn with my combo.  It seems to me that I must fly the Cymoon slightly further behind the Kuat to make sure I can position it to be hitting the big juicy targets two turns in a row.

- Is my math/simulation off? (I did factor in ramming)

- What do you think are the best setups for BT Avenger (and Cymoon)? 

- How do you fly yours to victory? I tried deploying mine as in the picture and fly the Kuat slightly ahead of the Cymoon to Pryce on turn 2, double arc and have the Cymoon at long range. That seemed like a somewhat realistic scenario to me.

This is the first setup I tried

image.png.a565f22f5dfc42b10fc80bde9727ef09.png

 

This is what I believe is close to the optimal setup for 1-rounding an ECM ISD:

image.png.126444d4a9df719e4848a5e1ac3557fc.png


This is how I have been flying them in my demo. Kuat is red, Cymoon is blue.

image.thumb.png.1501c2027ae18064ba5492b6f8ad92d2.png

Edited by Andylicious
Post was unclear

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ACM isn't a great choice because it doesn't force damage through to the hull (it indirectly forces 1, as they have fewer shields to redirect to.)  In the short term, External Racks do as much or more damage concentrated on the target hull zone; and why try BTAvenger if not to kill ships in the short term?

But assuming you get an acc both times it finishes on 2 hull.  And I hadn't noticed the double Kuat rerolls...

Math-checking to come.

Edited by The Jabbawookie

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LS+ACM does not seem to be great no, but the results are pretty much the same as LS+Rax (unless I'm being a dumb-dumb. 
LS with Vader seems to be overkill. 

Bear in mind that I am just simulating by throwing actual dice and talking to myself (I wanna do a program to figure out some probabilities, but have not been able to work it out), but HIE+Rax seems to be the combo with the highest avg damage. I threw in IF! on the Cymoon as well to get a little more juice out. I am trying to figure out approximately how reliably this combo 1-rounds the ECM ISD.

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General ISD stuff: 

Start them at speed 2 always. You can change your speed round 1 with a nav command that you will use to get an extra tic, so you can go to any speed except 0. I normally stack my commands as either Nav-Nav-Nav and then Con-Con-Nav for both ships. I run Thrawn, so I end up with some squadron commands there.

Use ECMs. Yes your tokens will eventually get stripped, but you need to have them available even if there is an acc.

BTA Stuff:

Pryce turn 2 100% of the time for me now as turn 3 is too late no matter what the setup. 

drop strategic advisor for either brunson, needa or tua. Run the Cymoon just as fast as the Kuat. Creating differing ranges will not help your kuat live, but if there are 2 ISDs at range, you might get some shots on the Cymoon. Do not run Devestator with the Cymoon as your tokens will be locked out the whole game (if you get shot). You will only be able to spend (most likely) 1 redirect and your contain. I do not think that it is worth the 10 points. You do have vader, but vader wants tokens to spend other than the brace, so most likely you will keep tokens around for vader to spend, rather than destroying them for Devestator. 
Use ICB over HIE because you are focusing on dealing damage straight to hull, and the redirect power is minimal. 

Vader is one of the best commanders, but he is really expensive. Can I tempt you to move to double Kuats and a different commader? Leading Shots is a 4 point upgrade, so 8 points for 2 Kuats, and gives you a slightly weaker vader. Thrawn gives you a Con fire dial every combat turn, which means he basically negates the loss of leading shots( and sometimes adds a damage as he gives you a black die! Thrawn is 32+8 is 40 points, which means you *gain* a damage to your pool, and you do not spend your own tokens. You do not have to give Con fire, that is just the easiest one to compare with. Squadron commands can Shift the game into your favor, weather it is MMJ at 68 points, or just MJ to get 4 damage on the ship you are dealing with, that stuff adds up. Double Kuats appeals to me more as well because they both can take ECMs, which is one of my core rules on ISDs. I also like that my ships do not feel like they are trying to be at different ranges, so the continuity feels good. The damage output of the Kuat is considerably higher than the Cymoon because it has so many close range dice. 

If you do not switch, I recommend staying with vader and only making minor changes to the list becuase for the most part, it is really solid. How do you plan on filling out the rest of the list?

Here is my fixed version

Assault: Advanced Gunnery
Defense: Jamming Barrier
Navigation: Solar Corona

ISD Cymoon 1 Refit (112) (an ungodly amount of dice at long range, and the consistency between Vader and Intensify! is great. Brunson Keeps you alive)
• Darth Vader (36)
• Captain Brunson (5)
• Intensify Firepower! (6)
• Gunnery Team (7)
• Quad Turbolaser Cannons (10)
• Spinal Armament (9)
= 185 Points

ISD Kuat Refit (112) this Kuat is terrifying and can really mess up anyone's day. ICB gets rid of token usage for squads or BTA on their own ships, as well as potentially just dealing damage. Everything else is standard, and just as brutal. 
• Governor Pryce (7)
• Boarding Troopers (3)
• Electronic Countermeasures (7)
• Ion Cannon Batteries (5)
• External Racks (3)
• Avenger (5)
= 142 Points

Gozanti Cruisers (23) Give Cymoon Fire tokens and keep the kuat happy with a squadron token from hondo on round 3. 
• Hondo Ohnaka (2)
• Comms Net (2)
= 27 Points

Squadrons: slightly better IMO than Valen+Ciena, but 2 points more expensive. the problem is that you need a cheap fighter force to protect against sloane and the like, but you want them to do something against a non squadron heavy list as well. This variation can handle TIE swarms and lighter Biggs balls and A-wing swarms. I like to be able to get some points back on them in games where they normally cannot do much. 
• Ciena Ree (17)
• Mauler Mithel (15)
= 32 Points

Total Points: 386 weak bid in this list, could cut Mauler to add 15 points or drop Mauler and add Suppressor for a wack turn 2 Pryce anti brace. 

 

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So the overall concept I am toying with, just to be clear, is: I want to be able to kill an ISD with ECM with a double arc from the Kuat and one front arc shot from the Cymoon. Almost everything else is secondary, so the list fails if it cannot do this with as high a probability as possible (unless there is a really good reason). I am also trying to make this as easy as possible for myself, which factors in choice of Star Destroyers.

Great stuff, Cleto0. I wanted to go through a lot of the points you made, so here goes:

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

General ISD stuff: 

Start them at speed 2 always. You can change your speed round 1 with a nav command that you will use to get an extra tic, so you can go to any speed except 0. I normally stack my commands as either Nav-Nav-Nav and then Con-Con-Nav for both ships. I run Thrawn, so I end up with some squadron commands there.

Use ECMs. Yes your tokens will eventually get stripped, but you need to have them available even if there is an acc.

Pretty much agree. I think I might end up going Nav-Nav-Nav-Eng-?-? on the Kuat and Nav-Nav-Nav-Con-Con-Nav on the Cymoon often.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

BTA Stuff:

Pryce turn 2 100% of the time for me now as turn 3 is too late no matter what the setup. 

Tend to agree but just played my first game with it and turn 3 ended up being correct 

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

drop strategic advisor for either brunson, needa or tua. Run the Cymoon just as fast as the Kuat. Creating differing ranges will not help your kuat live, but if there are 2 ISDs at range, you might get some shots on the Cymoon.

Can you elaborate why? I feel differing ranges can work pretty well if I can position the ships so I don't have to choose who gets a shot off.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

Do not run Devestator with the Cymoon as your tokens will be locked out the whole game (if you get shot). You will only be able to spend (most likely) 1 redirect and your contain. I do not think that it is worth the 10 points. You do have vader, but vader wants tokens to spend other than the brace, so most likely you will keep tokens around for vader to spend, rather than destroying them for Devestator. 

Agree. I dropped it. It feels like it belongs in a different kind of list.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

Use ICB over HIE because you are focusing on dealing damage straight to hull, and the redirect power is minimal. 

Disagree. If I BT an ISD with ECM I lock the Brace and a Redirect so HIE is worth 3 damage (one to the target zone, one to neighbor zone when he redirects the first shot and one to the other neighbor when he redirects my second shot). And I believe I will need those extra points of damage. I kinda like the idea of stopping BT but I also feel it is banking on my opponent making a mistake when he lines up against my BTA as second player.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

Vader is one of the best commanders, but he is really expensive. Can I tempt you to move to double Kuats and a different commader?

Not for this list/concept I think. I would definitely try it. However I think it will be much more difficult landing the 1-round-kill with double Kuats. I don't think I am skilled enough as a player to reliably ensure two close range front arc shots in the same turn.  

Also I fear that double Kuat makes it a lot less versatile matchup-wise.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

Leading Shots is a 4 point upgrade, so 8 points for 2 Kuats, and gives you a slightly weaker vader. Thrawn gives you a Con fire dial every combat turn, which means he basically negates the loss of leading shots( and sometimes adds a damage as he gives you a black die! Thrawn is 32+8 is 40 points, which means you *gain* a damage to your pool, and you do not spend your own tokens. You do not have to give Con fire, that is just the easiest one to compare with. Squadron commands can Shift the game into your favor, weather it is MMJ at 68 points, or just MJ to get 4 damage on the ship you are dealing with, that stuff adds up. Double Kuats appeals to me more as well because they both can take ECMs, which is one of my core rules on ISDs. I also like that my ships do not feel like they are trying to be at different ranges, so the continuity feels good. The damage output of the Kuat is considerably higher than the Cymoon because it has so many close range dice. 

I think running Thrawn as Vader replacement is really really interesting. I have my reservations with double Kuat but I think I will play around with the idea a little.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

If you do not switch, I recommend staying with vader and only making minor changes to the list becuase for the most part, it is really solid. How do you plan on filling out the rest of the list?

I am considering whether I should go with two Gozantis or one Gozanti and a squadron speedbump.  If I go with the double Gozanti I think I can cut Pryce and still get last-first reliably with Strategic Advisor without telegraphing which turn will be my F-you turn. That list is in the picture.

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

Here is my fixed version

Assault: Advanced Gunnery
Defense: Jamming Barrier
Navigation: Solar Corona

How would you play Jamming Barrier?

On 5/13/2019 at 4:09 PM, Cleto0 said:

ISD Cymoon 1 Refit (112)
• Quad Turbolaser Cannons (10)

I played around with these but I feel like they are too unreliable for the price although I really like their potential for 7 dice before I reroll.

image.thumb.png.f4b9ff32a5b7b7fbf21b76975e3f6280.png
Objectives would be: 
Most Wanted - Obvious. 
Contested Outpost - I slow roll and have the Gozantis tag team the station in later turns
Solar Corona - Opponent sets up and I plan my flight towards their biggest ship.

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A few things: with 1 reroll, black dice deal 1.25 average damage, blues 0.93, reds right around 1.  If you're bringing HIEs and a Cymoon you should bring Vader; he's basically the only way to get reliable damage out of those reds, and increases the odds of getting a blue crit to 68.35% (still not comfortable odds, mind you.)

I like HIEs.  Basically you're not making your opponent die with their brace and shields still there, but instead forcing them not to brace the biggest attack, which means HIEs still contribute 3 damage against a redirect-equipped foe.  It's worth thinking about collecting a confire token (and maybe dial too) just to make it happen more reliably.

On average, the Kuat with Exrax, HIEs and Vader hits for around 13 damage (with swing, because of the HIEs.)  This means 6 damage goes through to the hull after redirecting.  The side shot hits for another 4.5 (we'll say 4), meaning 7 on the hull and no shields on the front or side arcs.  A ram brings you up to 8, meaning you only need the 6 damage you're statistically likely to get with the Cymoon to kill them.

Things that can screw this up on an ISD target:  whiffing on the Cymoon, not triggering HIEs, not getting the ram, lower than average damage, EWS, Seventh Fleet, Motti, Targeting Scrambler and Brunson.

 

Oh, and given timing Titus only denies a banked token, as your opponent will see which ship is affected and take a round 1 nav.  This combined with the prevalence of Comms Net flotillas makes him near-useless; I highly recommend ditching him.

Edited by The Jabbawookie

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19 hours ago, The Jabbawookie said:

ditching him

Burning his card* 

On 5/15/2019 at 4:29 AM, Andylicious said:

How would you play Jamming Barrier?

Jamming is great with Pryce because you can place the barrier to where an akbar gunline or something like that cannot shoot you well, but you can pryce and take a full attack at them. I also like the "cannot attack" fields, which greatly help you with taking fewer hits. You can use it to protect your flanks from a wacky raddus drop or something similar. 

 

On 5/15/2019 at 4:29 AM, Andylicious said:

Most Wanted - Obvious.

Advanced Gunnery will give you a run for your money... your game will be a 400-0 or a 0-400 (most likely). 

On 5/15/2019 at 4:29 AM, Andylicious said:

I think I can cut Pryce

you think you can, but you cannot. SA is just not good for imperials when you could instead take pryce. If you are bringing a ISD, you need pryce. 3 points more, allows you to strategically maneuver your fleet without the loss on the Kuat.  SA used to be a good card, but with the rise of 2 ship and similar lists, any imperial with SA will become the one missing out. You can SA down to your last ship, but you will still be beaten by pryce. A word of advice for playing with pryce vs a pryce. almost always take 2nd Player. 2nd player moves their pryce ship last, so you can double attack before they can. Technically, they move, then you attack, end of round, then they probably attack with their ship, then you get your 2nd attack. 

I have a list, but I don't know if it can work:

Commander: Darth Vader

Assault: Advanced Gunnery
Defense: Fire Lanes
Navigation: Sensor Net

ISD Cymoon 1 Refit (112)
• Darth Vader (36)
• Captain Brunson (5)
• Spinal Armament (9)
• H9 Turbolasers (8)
= 170 Points

ISD Kuat Refit (112)
• Governor Pryce (7)
• Boarding Troopers (3)
• Electronic Countermeasures (7)
• MS-1 Ion Cannons (2)
• External Racks (3)
• Avenger (5)
= 139 Points

Squadrons:
• Colonel Jendon (20)
• Maarek Stele (21)
• JumpMaster 5000 (12)
• 2 x Lambda Shuttle (30)
= 83 Points

Total Points: 392

I ran a similar list with thrawn+LS and 2 kuats. I got 1st place at my local competitive tournament. The trick is that 1st player works for you as does 2nd player. Basically lesser of two evils. First person I played made the mistake of choosing 1st player and giving me almost 120 points in objective points. I have MS-1s because it would be hilarious to me if you could shoot him with the kuat and have no tokens used, and then he cannot brace if you get an acc on the Cymoon. Idk. I prefer squads over gozantis, but if you want the more conservative version of this list, it trades the squads for Suppressor and Ciena+mauler and MS-1s for HIE. 

On the main topic of this forum page: Optimal BTA is squad token, squad command w/ Thrawn+ confire from stack, confire token, and 2 squadrons to activate like Marrek and Morna.  Advanced gunnery is a plus xD. I have dealt 30 damage with BTA before. Absolutely insane. 

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Really appreciate the sparring, guys. Hope I don't sound too defensive/jerky in the following. I messed up the quotes :D 

On 5/15/2019 at 8:46 PM, The Jabbawookie said:

It's worth thinking about collecting a confire token (and maybe dial too) just to make it happen more reliably.

I think this should definitely be a part of my setup, especially if I bring the 2xGoz version.

Quote

On average, the Kuat with Exrax, HIEs and Vader hits for around 13 damage (with swing, because of the HIEs.)  This means 6 damage goes through to the hull after redirecting.  The side shot hits for another 4.5 (we'll say 4), meaning 7 on the hull and no shields on the front or side arcs.  A ram brings you up to 8, meaning you only need the 6 damage you're statistically likely to get with the Cymoon to kill them.

That is pretty much what I concluded as well. I am not a giant fan of the expected damage approach tho (since it lacks information about probability and variability and does not account for needing accuracies or crits). I will get back to this when I have some probabilities for different amounts of damage.

Quote

Things that can screw this up on an ISD target:  whiffing on the Cymoon, not triggering HIEs, not getting the ram, lower than average damage, EWS, Seventh Fleet, Motti, Targeting Scrambler and Brunson.

I will try to account for these. I'll return with an update.

Quote

Oh, and given timing Titus only denies a banked token, as your opponent will see which ship is affected and take a round 1 nav.  This combined with the prevalence of Comms Net flotillas makes him near-useless; I highly recommend ditching him.

I realize that he is pretty bad and I probably want Supressor more. But with a 22 point bid I feel like I could afford even a pretty crappy card. 

Quote

you think you can, but you cannot. SA is just not good for imperials when you could instead take pryce. If you are bringing a ISD, you need pryce.

I am not quite convinced. In the example you describe it sounds like I would be banking on my opponent making a mistake or me outsmarting them. I am trying to make this list as simple as possible and the "trick" (1 round damage spike) as inevitable as possible.  I think Pryce can be waited out or rushed since she gives your plan away. I'm not implying she is bad but if I can get last-first without her, that is definitely superior. 
I don't have a flight plan for a 2-ship yet though.

Two questions regarding playing as second player with Pryce - non of them are rhetorical: 
- What is preventing your opponent from shooting you with his Pryce ship and flying out of close range? 
- What is the scenario in which your opponent flies his Pryce Kuat into your range, gets shot once, then shoots back next rounds, moves and is still in range for you to shoot it again? I am not trying to be a jerk, but it sounds like an improbable scenario to me.

Quote

Commander: Darth Vader

Assault: Advanced Gunnery
Defense: Fire Lanes
Navigation: Sensor Net

Interesting list. I like the token ****ery but I'm a bit skeptical whether the death blow is too easily ruined by enemy squads/lack of nav command/lack of damage from the ships. Haven't done the math tho. 

 

Edited by Andylicious
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1 minute ago, Andylicious said:

- What is preventing your opponent from shooting you with his Pryce ship and flying out of close range? 
- What is the scenario in which your opponent flies his Pryce Kuat into your range, gets shot once, then shoots back next rounds, moves and is still in range for you to shoot it again? I am not trying to be a jerk, but it sounds like an improbable scenario to me.

The answer to both questions is blocking.  Not necessarily the most satisfying response, but with two large bases and navs expecting to pull it off is reasonable.  Personally I think there's an argument to be made for either; Pryce helps against 2 ship and higher activation counts, whereas SAd helps against Raddus and speed control (Ozzel, Leia, etc.)

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1 minute ago, The Jabbawookie said:

The answer to both questions is blocking.  Not necessarily the most satisfying response, but with two large bases and navs expecting to pull it off is reasonable.  Personally I think there's an argument to be made for either; Pryce helps against 2 ship and higher activation counts, whereas SAd helps against Raddus and speed control (Ozzel, Leia, etc.)

I need to play around with this a bit to wrap my head around exactly what can be done with blocking. The second scenario seems like something that will almost only happen if the opponent really screws up. 

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4 hours ago, Andylicious said:

I need to play around with this a bit to wrap my head around exactly what can be done with blocking. The second scenario seems like something that will almost only happen if the opponent really screws up. 

Blocking is a very important part of running ISDs. A Golden Rule, one might say. If you keep ships in your massive front arc, you can kill things. :D 

5 hours ago, Andylicious said:

I could afford even a pretty crappy card. 

Not really. Titus is 1/200th of your fleet. every bit counts. 

Commander: Darth Vader

Assault: Advanced Gunnery (for players who don't know how to play. you will rarely see a good play take this. Your kuat is too scary. You could potentially kill 2 ISDs in 2 turns with a Pryce Last/First, without any response. However unlikely :D)
Defense: Jamming Barrier (movement control is this game. Period. This is one of the best objectives for this. Many top players will not play this objective because it scares the shoot out of them)
Navigation: Solar Corona (get used to playing SC)

ISD Kuat Refit (112) (simple, UBER efficient, clean)
• Governor Pryce (7)
• Boarding Troopers (3)
• Electronic Countermeasures (7)
• Heavy Ion Emplacements (9)
• External Racks (3)
• Avenger (5)
= 146 Points

ISD Cymoon 1 Refit (112) (I would personally drop IF! and GT for bid and more squads, along with changing the squad ball MMJ minimum)
• Darth Vader (36)
• Captain Brunson (5)
• Intensify Firepower! (6)
• Gunnery Team (7)
• Spinal Armament (9)
• Heavy Turbolaser Turrets (6)
• Sovereign (4) (cuttable, gives your tokens exchangeability)
= 185 Points

Gozanti Cruisers (23) (gives you plenty of tokens and weakens their main ships with Suppressor)
• Hondo Ohnaka (2)
• Comms Net (2)
• Suppressor (4)
= 31 Points

Squadrons: (meat shielding. Valen is droppable or switchable for mauler)
• Ciena Ree (17)
• Valen Rudor (13)
= 30 Points

Total Points: 392

Pryce is the Ultimate activation delay. I used to be on the opposite side of things, until I realized the TRUE POWER OF THE DARK SIDE OF THE FORCE. 

I hate to summon a fire breathing dragon, but @Green Knight will hopefully be able to change your idea better than I can. 

OBIWDIS.jpeg

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8 hours ago, Cleto0 said:

Pryce is the Ultimate activation delay. I used to be on the opposite side of things, until I realized the TRUE POWER OF THE DARK SIDE OF THE FORCE. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not on the anti-Pryce side of things. But I value not telegraphing and will probably play around with how well I can set up things with five activations.

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I’m not up on the latest BT Avenger thinking, so why Kuat over ISD-II? ISD-II lacks the black dice power, but locks down all defense tokens removing risk of ECM and even DCO from the Contain token the Kuat leaves available. 

 

As I'm dabbling with some “two ship” fleets now, this is an interesting discussion. 

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3 hours ago, ShoutingMan said:

I’m not up on the latest BT Avenger thinking, so why Kuat over ISD-II? ISD-II lacks the black dice power, but locks down all defense tokens removing risk of ECM and even DCO from the Contain token the Kuat leaves available. 

 

As I'm dabbling with some “two ship” fleets now, this is an interesting discussion. 

You don’t need to lock down everything. You only care about a brace and contain as redirecting will be impossible. Kuat has more raw damage and is cheaper. The best kuat clocks in at 134 points

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5 hours ago, ShoutingMan said:

I’m not up on the latest BT Avenger thinking, so why Kuat over ISD-II? ISD-II lacks the black dice power, but locks down all defense tokens removing risk of ECM and even DCO from the Contain token the Kuat leaves available. 

 

As I'm dabbling with some “two ship” fleets now, this is an interesting discussion. 

External Racks compensates for the active redirect, which is better than your opponent keeping those side shields anyway.  From there, as Cleto0 says, it's raw damage.

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