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tsondaboy

Passive Sensors on Phantoms!

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I have to say, well played FFG!
If people want to put a TL action on a Phantom they have to ditch collision detector or Advanced Sensors. This is actually a very big compromise you have to do, considering the Ion clouds and Collision Detector work like a dream combo for Whisper/Echo.

 

swz40_card-passive-sensors.png

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I mean I routinely run stripped down Phantoms with none of that on there. Personally I love collision detector, but goon lean, going 4 ship mixed squad, and going to the full 200 points has been my MO.

Phantoms don’t care much about bid. In fact I want to move first most of the time.

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, tsondaboy said:

If people want to put a TL action on a Phantom they have to ditch collision detector or Advanced Sensors. 

 

4 minutes ago, kris40k said:

There is a Targeting Computer modification upgrade coming out for that.

swz47_spread.png

Bottom right upgrade.

Edited by Hiemfire

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3 minutes ago, Hiemfire said:

 

swz47_spread.png

Bottom right upgrade.

Again, we need to see the whole text and cost for it before we can say if its useful on phantoms (it will probably be).

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8 minutes ago, tsondaboy said:

whole text

Zoom in. The entirety of the text in the ability description section is italicized. It is flavor text. This upgrade simply adds the Lock action. The only things we do not know is if it is faction locked (doubtful), what slot it goes in (might be sensor, but mod is more likely) and cost (per the 2.0 usual).

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It's also going to make low-init munition ships with a sensor slot very happy (e.g. TIE Punisher and Alpha scrubs), among other sensor ships.  Low-init Scurrgs, TIE Punishers, Alpha Star Wings, TIE Adv. x1s, and TIE Phantoms are just a few ships that will like this...

Given the unbelievable power of its timing, which completely solves the init-lock distance/timing problem for any initiative, I wonder if it'll be as expensive as Advanced Sensors... feels like it will have to be pretty close, IMO.

Maybe this will help put Alpha Star Wings back on the table, fully enabled by Plasma Torps and a late-gain lock.  While I like alphas conceptually, I'm not fully sure that's a good thing.  I still have vietnam-style flashbacks to first edition harpoon boats.  ;)

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Posted (edited)

Vipers :)

course it's not what I'd consider an ordnance boat (torps, I guess), but I wouldn't consider most sensor baring ships to be ordnance boats since a lot of them already have 3-die primaries. In my eyes, PS is looking at 1.) Hyenas (convenient!), 2.) N-1s (convenient!), 3.) Punisher? (I mean...trajectory sims...y u so pricey!?), 4.) Funboats (doesn't play nice with SLAM, but still? maybe?)

 

but finding ships like the Phantom or Vader (yes, Vader is a whole ship type), who don't care about ordnance but still like PS, is a whole other ballgame

guess there's also the lothal with saw crew (or other low I ships with access to focus-mods)? ...eh

 

Edited by ficklegreendice

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, Wazat said:

Given the unbelievable power of its timing, which completely solves the init-lock distance/timing problem for any initiative, I wonder if it'll be as expensive as Advanced Sensors... feels like it will have to be pretty close, IMO.

I disagree, if only because that would make it a dead card.

Lets call it where it is, at 10 points an I2 Gunboar goes from 32 to 42. For 39 points you can get I4 Vynder. Not quite i7 lock, but definitely better than I2. And an ability. 

Lambdas? Well let’s say Targeting Computer is 5. OGP with 10pt PS, or Sai with ST-321 or Jendon with TC for 2 points less?

I2 tempest with PS for 48, or Maarek for 46 at I5?

I1 Defender with it for 80, or I5 Rexler for 82?

I2 Starvipers at 56 or I5 Guri at 63? Ok that one actually is almost interesting, and doesn’t seem lol 10 points.

The G1A and IG seem also interesting due to lack of initiative spread.

But look at the Ghost, the Lothal would be 5 points _more_ than Hera! The Knave 2 less than Corran, the B-wing??

Anything above 6-7 and the card is literally unplayable. Now I’m willing to go with more points for ships without native lock, maybe, but I really think this will be 6.

Either that or we will see a dramatic uptick in initiative pricing. As in nearly across the board 5+ points for I5/6. Which for many may be justified, looking at you Han and Talie.

Edited by millertime059

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Posted (edited)

honestly, strong as it can be...I mean, why not give lower I some kind of advantage?

It's not like it's particularly terrifying by itself (TL and focus giving relatively the same dice fixing by themselves) unless you add MORE points (ordnance)

 

(discounting stuff like the phantom/vader ofc)

Besides, still needs an action and it's VERY difficult to "cheat" out given its restrictions

Edited by ficklegreendice

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Of course the ships I want to abuse this on with Saw the most don't have the option.

Oh Wullffwarro, why don't you have a system slot?!  Would it be so wrong to hand the wookies... ok, no, I realized it was crazy as soon as I said it.  :P

Just now, millertime059 said:

I disagree, if only because that would make it a dead card.

Lets call it where it is, at 10 points an I2 goes from 32 to 42. For 39 points you can get I4 Vynder. Not quite i7 lock, but definitely better than I2. And an ability. 

Lambdas? Well let’s say Targeting Computer is 5. OGP with 10pt PS, or Sai with ST-321 or Jendon with TC for 2 points less?

I2 tempest with PS for 48, or Maarek for 46 at I5?

I1 Defender with it for 80, or I5 Rexler for 82?

I2 Starvipers at 56 or I5 Guri at 63? Ok that one actually is almost interesting, and doesn’t seem lol 10 points.

The G1A and IG seem also interesting due to lack of initiative spread.

But look at the Ghost, the Lothal would be 5 points _more_ than Hera! The Knave 2 less than Corran, the B-wing??

Anything above 6-7 and the card is literally unplayable. Now I’m willing to go with more points for ships without native lock, maybe, but I really think this will be 6.

Either that or we will see a dramatic uptick in initiative pricing. As in nearly across the board 5+ points for I5/6. Which for many may be justified, looking at you Han and Talie.

Perhaps.  But it also gives you the ability to calc or lock after everyone else has finalized positions and locks, even the I6 guys, for the cost of your system slot.  That's powerful for Vader, for something that must get its munitions out of the door (be it Redline or a scrub), and for something that doesn't know who will be in arc for a nuke (e.g. proton torp).  Delaying a lock until after final positions are set in stone, even beating aces, is strong no matter your initiative.  And if you can chain off of that calculate or lock action e.g. with a link or autothrusters (I'm looking at you, TIE/sf and TIE Silencer), all the better: now you're both locking and repositioning after initiative 6.

It's better than focusing because of the abilities tied to locks, which were previously mediated by the challenge of getting into the correct range and correctly calling your shot.  That's a decent amount of power to put in the hands of some I5-or-lower ship hunting Vader or another top ace.  Whether this is intended for low-init munitions scrubs etc is going to be determined by the price.  6 points may appear sane when comparing scrub to ace costs, but I can see FFG freaking out when someone finds an abusive combo and saying "nope, it's 10 points now".

If it looks innocuous, be afraid.  ;)

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Two 👏 points 👏 

Let the people have locks! End the tyranny of high initiative!

I actually think this or something like it is just how locks should work by default. The lock action is so bonkers, hilariously tilted in favor of high initiative (remember good 'ole Squad of Legend?) that just about any i5 can equip single modded proton torps and it's probably fine, but any pilot i4 or below has to thing long and hard about munitions that aren't focus-triggered and i1/2 generics just say no by default. It's both thematically and mechanically busted, one of those "core set problems" that FFG re-examined for 2.0.

But, they didn't change it, so it's not a mechanic that's going anywhere (short of third edition 👀) - and I really like Passive Sensors as a sort of next best thing. (Note that Synched Console and Targeting Sync exist too, although both are quite bad with current prices.)

PS levels the lock playing field to let low init ships and generics in on the munition action. And as a sensor slot (it could've easily been mod!), it specifically does mostly so for the ships that thematically ought to be ordnance carriers - bombers, punishers, hyenas, etc.

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46 minutes ago, Hiemfire said:

Zoom in. The entirety of the text in the ability description section is italicized. It is flavor text. This upgrade simply adds the Lock action. The only things we do not know is if it is faction locked (doubtful), what slot it goes in (might be sensor, but mod is more likely) and cost (per the 2.0 usual).

We don't know if there is a requirement text though, like Small Ship Only or something. That's the only thing we're missing really.

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Assuming the slot and requirements for targeting computer aren't crazy, TIE Interceptor will sure be happy about it.  Phantoms do seem like an obvious winner with passive sensors, but it's going to be a broad-based victory for lots of system ships if it's cheap enough.

BTW, for a sortable list of the 17+ system slot ships: https://xwing-miniatures-second-edition.fandom.com/wiki/Compare_Ship_Upgrade_Slots  (which I'm now realizing I need to update to include prequel ships, so also imagine the Hyena and Naboo Spin-To-Win)

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I feel like having a Lock action kinda should have been a requirement for Passive Sensors.  With Targeting Computer on the horizon, it wouldn't be a big deal, but one of the awkward things about 1e FCS was how easily it let a ship get locks without having the lock action on their bar.  I'm just not into that.  Ways to get locks using ships without the Lock action should be fairly rare, like Dutch and Tarkin.

13 hours ago, Wazat said:

Perhaps.  But it also gives you the ability to calc or lock after everyone else has finalized positions and locks, even the I6 guys, for the cost of your system slot.  That's powerful for Vader, for something that must get its munitions out of the door (be it Redline or a scrub), and for something that doesn't know who will be in arc for a nuke (e.g. proton torp).  Delaying a lock until after final positions are set in stone, even beating aces, is strong no matter your initiative.  And if you can chain off of that calculate or lock action e.g. with a link or autothrusters (I'm looking at you, TIE/sf and TIE Silencer), all the better: now you're both locking and repositioning after initiative 6.

It's better than focusing because of the abilities tied to locks, which were previously mediated by the challenge of getting into the correct range and correctly calling your shot.  That's a decent amount of power to put in the hands of some I5-or-lower ship hunting Vader or another top ace.  Whether this is intended for low-init munitions scrubs etc is going to be determined by the price.  6 points may appear sane when comparing scrub to ace costs, but I can see FFG freaking out when someone finds an abusive combo and saying "nope, it's 10 points now".

If it looks innocuous, be afraid.  ;)

Speaking of chaining actions, Vader's ability is quite potent there, too.  Spend a force to Barrel Roll off your PS Lock.  If you're second player, you get the last barrel roll over Init 6s in the activation phase.  If you're first player, you can wait until the engagement phase, and it'll still be the last reposition.  There's very little anyone can do to attack a Vader before he's had the option of the last barrel roll.  I guess spinning is a good trick.

Plus, I keep thinking about a Gunboat with one of these essentially being 1e Deadeye.  At less than 7 points, that'll be 4x Proton Torpedo/Passive Sensor Nus.  No Guidance Chips (but all mods are down a bit in 2e), and "only" Proton Torpedoes instead of Harpoons with their bull**** condition, but you'll have Extra Munitions built in.

Count me among those who think Passive Sensors should be expensive.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

I feel like having a Lock action kinda should have been a requirement for Passive Sensors.  With Targeting Computer on the horizon, it wouldn't be a big deal, but one of the awkward things about 1e FCS was how easily it let a ship get locks without having the lock action on their bar.  I'm just not into that.  Ways to get locks using ships without the Lock action should be fairly rare, like Dutch and Tarkin.

Speaking of chaining actions, Vader's ability is quite potent there, too.  Spend a force to Barrel Roll off your PS Lock.  If you're second player, you get the last barrel roll over Init 6s in the activation phase.  If you're first player, you can wait until the engagement phase, and it'll still be the last reposition.  There's very little anyone can do to attack a Vader before he's had the option of the last barrel roll.  I guess spinning is a good trick.

Plus, I keep thinking about a Gunboat with one of these essentially being 1e Deadeye.  At less than 7 points, that'll be 4x Proton Torpedo/Passive Sensor Nus.  No Guidance Chips (but all mods are down a bit in 2e), and "only" Proton Torpedoes instead of Harpoons with their bull**** condition, but you'll have Extra Munitions built in.

Count me among those who think Passive Sensors should be expensive.

My thoughts exactly.  "The new deadeye for second edition" is a great way to describe it.  A 4x gunboat list with proton torps and easy late locks is going to be a very mean alpha-striker list that doesn't struggle for locks at low init, which hearkens back to deadeye or long-range scanners.  I don't think many fleets in the current meta will enjoy fighting that.  :)  I'd like to think FFG will try to avoid/correct that once they see it on the table; pricing so that it's only 3 ships in the list might be necessary.

I should point out that 3 alphas with proton torps and an 8-cost PS can fit a TIE Reaper with coordinate and tactical officer.  The reaper can coordinate an alpha to give it a focus before it spends its charge and bans future coordination.  And that might be the price point FFG is aiming for.  If that proves too powerful, 9 or 10 would eliminate it.  Remember always, FFG has to cost against the negative, not just for the positive.  Whatever options a high cost eliminates, it's necessary if a low cost allows too much.

Add that it's relevant that it's a powerful late-trigger action that Vader, Silencers, possibly others to chain off of for repositions after all other aces that don't have PS; that might make it the new mandatory upgrade in the Initiative War (which sucks for non-Sensor ships).  It solves the problem TIE Adv x1s have with choosing who to lock (or being in range) vs another ace list, to enjoy their ship ability (which is often the only strategy I have against, say, Maarek when I'm flying a fragile-agile ace against him).  And I'll bet there will be other potent combos.  And it's a white lock or calc action, not red.  That's so nice!  Maybe too nice (maybe that will be adjusted later).

As much as a shame as it'd be for other ships that would benefit from this upgrade, there's likely a combo or scenario that will require this to be pricey, I'd guess 7, 8, maybe 10 points.  I'm putting my chips on the table for expensive.  We will regret cheap.

 

Though even if pricey, it might still help starvipers, b-wings, and other struggling ships, assuming they're not pushed out of the meta by ships that benefit a lot more (which is always a big "if" for cards that should presumably benefit ships that need a boost).  Or perhaps new restrictions or wording adjustments will be added to favor them and not the ships above.  I'm curious if scum Aggressors would like an easy time locking; they lack top-ace initiatives, and they can do great things with a calculate token if they decide to fall back to that (nothing in arc when they can lock, might as well calc).  They might be able to afford the cost, or it might not be worth the expense.

So thinking back to @millertime059's response... Honestly, making a scrub with Passive Sensors more expensive than the ace might make a lot of sense, since the lock/calc happens after all the aces have finished, and that has a lot of power to it even before you add action-chain shenanigans.  That's potentially worthy of eschewing the pilot ability and init boost that comes from buying a better pilot instead.  Yes you could have an init 4 or 5 or even 6 ace for that price, but PS guarantees you get that lock after init 6.  IMO, the utility (or threat of abuse by ships that love it more) says that'll be expensive.  By comparison, you could also upgrade to an ace pilot instead of putting Advanced Sensors on a ship, but one might still use AS on scrubs or mid-tier pilots sometimes because of its utility.  And if that's never an option for you, you might still put AS on an ace; being that expensive doesn't mean it doesn't see use, it just limits who should use it, often intentionally, or perhaps just as an unfortunate result of necessity.

After I've thought about it, I don't see scrubs outcosting higher pilots as an impediment.  It might even be done deliberately to make the choice non-trivial, and frankly not all ships have to benefit from this upgrade.  If it's too expensive for them, other ships will still love it, and that's not necessarily a problem for FFG.  Ships that get costed out wouldn't have cared anyway if they're not meta-viable even with the upgrade, because other ships use it better and it's nonsense to fly anything else.

It'll be a long time before we know the cost, and any other restrictions placed on the card before actual launch.  We have a preliminary image and not a promise -- it can change.  FFG is probably still playtesting and tweaking, after all.

Edited by Wazat

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There are very few edge cases where this card will be valuable, but will be even less so if it is on the expensive side (6+ pts). If you're looking to use this on lower initiative pilots, then those pilots do need to stay alive before getting initiative killed by those higher than them. If you use the Passive Sensors action and don't have another way to mod dice defensively or even offensively, it's value drops dramatically for that ship. Ships that stand out right now are those with access to defensive mods without using an action in Phantoms, N-1s, Defenders, Hyenas from NetworkCalc buddies, and any force user. That way that ship has a higher chance to stick around and still take advantage of the Passive Sensors mitigating it's weakness of costing an action that would normally leave that ship vulnerable. 

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, Wazat said:

 

After I've thought about it, I don't see scrubs outcosting higher pilots as an impediment.

uh, it's ABSOLUTELY an impediment. It'll make the upgrade absolutely worthless

People here acting as if not getting TLed on approach is the only advantage aces get when the danger of getting Initiative killed is completely unaffected by this upgrade

not to mention it don't help much if you get arc-dodged anyway. Sure, the lock is nice but you still can't hit your target

Edited by ficklegreendice

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18 hours ago, tsondaboy said:

I have to say, well played FFG!
If people want to put a TL action on a Phantom they have to ditch collision detector or Advanced Sensors. This is actually a very big compromise you have to do, considering the Ion clouds and Collision Detector work like a dream 

Not sure what you mean by this, I rarely see the slot used, and if it is its Collision Detector. Jukes on, and if its Whisper then 5th Bro on board too. So theres hardly any compromise aside from the points investment itself. 

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39 minutes ago, MegaSilver said:

Not sure what you mean by this, I rarely see the slot used, and if it is its Collision Detector. Jukes on, and if its Whisper then 5th Bro on board too. So theres hardly any compromise aside from the points investment itself. 

Same. I hardly ever run Sensors on Echo these days, it's a luxury. I've been waiting to stick PS in there ever since it was spoiled.

Honestly though, I want Targeting Computer and FCS more. I think Juke and 5th Brother on top is probably in the realm of enough mods.

Second thing I put it on is 2 Tempest Squadron pilots. The hammer section of a new list. Focus schmocus, they're there to draw fire and die or extremely blow things up if not.

Does seem like there are potentially plenty of things ready to make broken use of PS. It'll be a shame if it's priced out of being good for simpler things, but I'll accept it to dodge the brokeness.

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1 hour ago, Wazat said:

My thoughts exactly.  "The new deadeye for second edition" is a great way to describe it.  

...

Though even if pricey, it might still help starvipers, b-wings, and other struggling ships, assuming they're not pushed out of the meta by ships that benefit a lot more 

...

So thinking back to @millertime059's response... Honestly, making a scrub with Passive Sensors more expensive than the ace might make a lot of sense, since the lock/calc happens after all the aces have finished, and that has a lot of power to it even before you add action-chain shenanigans.  That's potentially worthy of eschewing the pilot ability and init boost that comes from buying a better pilot instead.  Yes you could have an init 4 or 5 or even 6 ace for that price, but PS guarantees you get that lock after init 6.  IMO, the utility (or threat of abuse by ships that love it more) says that'll be expensive.  

...

It'll be a long time before we know the cost, and any other restrictions placed on the card before actual launch.  We have a preliminary image and not a promise -- it can change.  FFG is probably still playtesting and tweaking, after all.

I disagree on several points, which I wanted to break down.

This is a strictly worse deadeye, because until you engage you will not have a mod. That’s a big difference, given that most of the ships that can equip this don’t have 3 dice and are definitely going to take damage if they’re taking shots before engaging. And I can’t imagine ever taking the calculate if I have focus on my bar. 

Also, in what world are B-Wings struggling? If that’s true for you locally, that’s pretty cool, but I don’t think it’s an experience that extrapolates very well. 

You still should prefer initiative over late locks because of when ships are removed from the board. Initiative killing is strong, so this upgrade levels the playing field for low I generics, but they’re way more likely to get hit if they don’t have a token. And even in the Vader shenanigans case, if it’s 6+ points, I’d rather have the bid to ensure I’m second player anyway. The only ship I can see even remotely playing for a linked engagement BR/boost is Blackout (or MAYBE a FOTP), but taking this upgrade over something like Optics seems strictly worse if Passive Sensors is more expensive. 

We’ll know prices on June 6th when it launches with the rest of the wave. 16 days and counting. 

18 hours ago, svelok said:

Two 👏 points 👏 

Let the people have locks! End the tyranny of high initiative!

This. 

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Posted (edited)

another thing about 1st ed deadeye we gotta recognize is we're NOWHERE NEAR 1st ed protorps level of mods of ease of application

1st ed deadeye is LOADED with implications that simply aren't relevant in 2nd ed play. Only protorps and homing throw four dice (homing might not throw ANY dice!), APTs throw five at range 1 only, Prockets only in bullseye, Plasmas MIGHT do extra damage if they hit (in very specific circumstances), and the limited, double-missile slot Borons MIGHT do an extra damage if they hit

 

Not to mention deadeye was available to everyone with a talent slot. Systems are markedly more rare

Edited by ficklegreendice

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