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Why no TIE FO swarms?

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5 minutes ago, ficklegreendice said:

sadly, dice are gonna dice

you do need Howlie if you're running nothing but 2-die primaries with bare minimum mods.

With just having Tie Fighters, you do not need to have Howlrunner.  She only last 2 turns, anyways.  Why not spend the points on something else and not fly in formation?

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2 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

Because mods 

So many rerolls, so many added hits 

For the one or two turns she is alive?  Not worth it to me.   You get stuck flying in formation and become utterly predictable.  Howlrunner dies fast, even with Iden Versio.  You have to sink so many points into Howlrunner and Iden that you don't have much for anything else.   I'd rather go with better Tie Fighters.

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I feel like having a fo tie swarm it might be better to mix the regular with the SF. Having the option for double arcs to have more coverage seems worth it for extra points. I’m thinking something like this: 

New Squadron

(41) "Backdraft" [TIE/sf Fighter]
(2) Fire-Control System
(1) Crack Shot
Points: 44

(36) Omega Squadron Expert [TIE/sf Fighter]
(2) Fire-Control System
(1) Crack Shot
Points: 39

(33) "Longshot" [TIE/fo Fighter]
(1) Crack Shot
Points: 34

(44) "Midnight" [TIE/fo Fighter]
(1) Crack Shot
Points: 45

(35) "Scorch" [TIE/fo Fighter]
(1) Crack Shot
Points: 36

Total points: 198

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It's almost like the devs thought this thing was something more than a TIE fighter. But alas, it is not. Fancy sloops, blue turns, shields, and tech slots can't hide the fact that it's going to blow up the first time it has to roll green dice.

Yet they price it as if it were something more. 6 TIE/lns are allowed to be Howl, Iden and the Infernos, and Wampa. 6 TIE/fos can't even be all-named, even without upgrades.

And 7 TIE/fos aren't going to put much hurt in either.

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Posted (edited)

Dunno, 28 seems fair

It seems more a problem of scaling. The Omega Ace (I 3) is 31 points.

Longshot (I 3) is 33, but their ability makes sense at that cost.

But then, Static (I 4) is 35 instead of 33... despite a nothing ability.

Scorch is also 35, but again their ability makes sense.

suddenly Malodorous is 41 points...wut!?

 

Now, I'm ABSOLUTELY all for charging I 5-6 more points for their overwhelming advantage, but we gotta keep perspective. The FO chassis is fine but it's not something you can abuse like the fang or Viper. It doesn't even have 3 dice!

Anyway, Malodorous, Static, and Midnight could use cost reduction. I'd also say TN could pay just one point for that suicidal ability (with no access to fanatic).

Of the lot, Malodorous is easily the most overcoated (self stressing, charge-limited ability). This is a problem because kylo is I 5 and the I 5 FOs would be great escorts!

Yes, their name is now Malodorous

Edited by ficklegreendice

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8 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

Dunno, 28 seems fair

I'd agree. Comparing a TIE/fo to a TIE/ln, what you get for a 5 point upgrade package (swap a K-turn for two segnor's loops, blue speed 2 turns, white target lock, a tech slot and a shield token) feels like a great value bundle deal.

Certainly the TIE/fo feels like a slightly superior craft to its closest

scummy equivalent, the M3-A Scyk.

8 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

But then, Static (I 4) is 35 instead of 33... despite a nothing ability.

I think Static is currently the weakest TIE/fo. She has the same initiative as Scorch but an ability which is both harder to trigger and less useful - not to mention one that can be to a greater or lesser extent duplicated with TN-3465 or Marksmanship.

If there was a reliable means of her generating both tokens without outside support (like old-style advanced optics) and/or a realistic means of getting her extra attack dice (like old-style Opportunist) she'd be awesome. Without either, she's pretty useless. In theory guaranteed criticals interact with I'll Show You The Dark Side but even then you've still got to hit.

Since her ability's not going to change, she should cost the same as Longshot, maybe even Muse, at most, as you're mostly paying for her Initiative score.

 

Midnight I get. He's Initiative 6 - which is rare - and has an ability which, if not quite as lethal as Omega Leader's used to be (because no Juke) is still bloody terrifying. 44 points is still not far off the price of a basic, non-limited X-wing and I suspect Midnight would eat alive anything in that price bracket in a fair fight.

8 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

suddenly Malodorous is 41 points...wut!?

Malarus, by comparison, I'd agree being a bit too pricey. Given that the TIE/ln-Initiative 5-pilots-who-aren't-Howlrunner*, Scourge and Mauler, are only 32 points with good abilities, you're paying 9 points for the '/fo upgrade', compared to 5 points for the generics. Somewhere in the 37-39 point region seems like it makes more sense - 37 would be very elegant since it fits Malarus with Elusive (a very nasty combination - with an Evade action, Elusive charge and a charge from her ability, she's ridiculously tough) in a 40-point 'get five ships' bracket. Getting double-modified attacks twice is nice....but it's still less firepower than Scorch's extra die. The bonus durability is great, especially against concentrated fire, but you can't force someone to fire on her and she's not so much of a threat that you must kill her early on (unlike midnight)

 

 

 

* Who, let's be fair, since she's generally stuck inside a swarm telegraphing her planned movement, she (and Iden Versio) are basically Black Squadron Aces with a 14-point Pilot force-multiplier ability attached....

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11 hours ago, battlestarbill said:

I feel like having a fo tie swarm it might be better to mix the regular with the SF. Having the option for double arcs to have more coverage seems worth it for extra points.

While it's borderline off topic for a thread about the FO, I've had a decent amount of luck with a six ship First Order swarm that's five Zeta Squadron Survivor SFs and Lieutenant Rivas in the FO.  It's 200 points on the nose, and gives you a lot of arc coverage, a big chunk of shields and hull, and Rivas' ability gives him double modded shots more often than you'd expect.

It's not top tier by any stretch of the imagination, but it's my First Order swarm of choice right now.

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/sf fighters without gunners are an interesting unit. As you say, it's kind of off-topic, but they're nothing to ignore either.

One thing I did consider was mixing in a few missile-wielding /sf generics with /fo generics - four cadets and two survivors with ion missiles, for example, sounds interesting - getting ionized in front of a swarm is a very painful thing to experience, and Passive Sensors will take most of the legwork out of getting a target lock for low-initiative generics with missile launchers.

Thinking about the /sf, that's another argument in favour of @ficklegreendice's dislike of Malarus; 41 points is the same price as Backdraft. Now, Midnight versus Quickdraw is a reasonable debate; without her specfor gunner, quickdraw's actually not packing much more heat than a turret-armed Y-wing and she's paying more points to do it. Both have the gold standard initiative 6. In practice you'd never field quickdraw with the gunner's seat empty (I could see using a hotshot gunner, though) but you can argue for either pilot.

Backdraft versus Malarus feels like no contest in favour of the heavier ship. Yes, you've got the odd piloting problem of lining up the tail guns, but you've still got frontal guns that are just as good as malarus'. Yes, Malarus has two turns of taking vast amounts of space cocaine, but that results in her flying a predictable route - which backdraft doesn't - and it's highly unlikely her 2-dice popguns can take out a well-shielded /sf before the drugs run out.

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I’ve been thinking about this and in general the TIE/FO on paper is not over-costed.  It has an amazing dial with lots of blue manoeuvres, a target lock action and a shield over the TIE/ln.  However with no linked red actions or abilities that cause stress that dial is a complete waste.  The target lock, really why bother on a 2 attack ship, TLs are harder to get with the lower initiative swarms and there is no ordnance option.

Continuing the FO v ln comparison, the ln has some amazing support ships - Howlrunner, Iden and Del Meeko whereas the FO needs an expensive Upsilon (maybe the Xi-Class Light Shuttle will come to the rescue?) which reduces swarminess.

To sum up the ln is an efficient ship whereas the FO has a bunch of pretty worthless stuff for swarming.

Now the discussion turned to the TIE/SF.  On paper +2 shields, -1 agility, +1 initiative, +1 blue manoeuvre(!) albeit with no blue turns.  The dial synergises nicely with slow speed 1 manoeuvres with the SFs killer feature forward and backward arcs. These additional arcs work well on lower initiative ships who often lose shots higher initiative ships.  For a meagre 6 more points than a basic FO.  But this does mean you can only take 5 but with plenty of change for upgrades compared to 7 basic FOs.  

A 5 Fanatical/Advanced Optics Omega Ace is an intriguing combo but having to lose that shield to trigger it... 😐 

Anyway those are my thoughts as an Imperial and FO player.  Hoping for FO points reduction or addition of missile slot for interest.

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Posted (edited)

Okay....so. TIE/fo prices just crashed like it's a bad day at the stock market.

  • Midnight down to 43
  • Malarus down to 39
  • Scorch and Static down to 34
  • Longshot down to 32
  • Muse down to 31
  • TN-3465 down to 29
  • Omega Squadron Expert (I assume they mean Ace, since they specify TIE/fo) down to 29
  • Rivas down to 28
  • Zetas down to 27
  • Epsilons down to 26(!)

So, for example, the Epsilon Squad we've been discussing can now be:

  • Muse - Pattern Analyser, Fanatical, Hull Upgrade
  • 5 x Epsilon Squadron Cadets, Pattern Analyser

Also, Upsilon Shuttles just got a bump in price, but Biohexacrypt Codes are now Hyperspace Legal, so Muse with Squad Leader and Biohexacrypt Codes is a nice support piece for only 38 points with a pseudo-white co-ordinate.

 

Edited by Magnus Grendel

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2 minutes ago, Magnus Grendel said:

Okay....so. TIE/fo prices just crashed like it's a bad day at the stock market.

  • Midnight down to 43
  • Malarus down to 39
  • Scorch and Static down to 34
  • Longshot down to 32
  • Muse down to 31
  • TN-3465 down to 29
  • Omega Squadron Expert (I assume they mean Ace, since they specify TIE/fo) down to 29
  • Rivas down to 28
  • Zetas down to 27
  • Epsilons down to 26(!)

So, for example, the Epsilon Squad we've been discussing can now be:

  • Muse - Pattern Analyser, Fanatical, Hull Upgrade
  • 5 x Epsilon Squadron Cadets, Pattern Analyser

 

 

On the other hand, 6x Zeta Survivors is now legal.  Looks like I'm buying SF #6.

 

While we're on the subject of the First Order, I'm a little sad I can't go 3x First Order Test Pilots with Fanatical and Proton Rockets.  That struck me as an interesting way to build the 3x generic Silencer list, but it's 1 point too much.

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Posted (edited)
57 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

On the other hand, 6x Zeta Survivors is now legal.  Looks like I'm buying SF #6.

I saw that they were 32, but didn't register the impact. That's a pretty impressive amount of heavy TIEs.

Angled Deflectors being just 3 points on a TIE/fo or TIE/sf sounds interesting, too, with the interaction with fanatical (electronic baffle is now hyperspace legal too). 5 fanatical/Angled deflectors omega experts might be interesting, too. Decent-ish initiative, and they'll be a bugger to finish off once they lose shields.

You can do a much more impressive roster of 6 named pilots now, too:

  • Scorch - Fanatical
  • Longshot - Fanatical
  • Muse - Fanatical, Pattern Analyser
  • Null - Advanced Optics
  • Lieutenant Rivas
  • TN-3465

 

Edited by Magnus Grendel

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1 hour ago, Magnus Grendel said:

Passive sensors being nice and cheap is cool, too. 3 points makes them a nice, viable choice for missile-armed low initiative TIE/sf.

5 zetas with passives and homing missiles sounds tempting.

Missiles still all cost 2 points too much, except barrage and prockets which don't cost enough.

What do the devs have against missiles?!

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52 minutes ago, ClassicalMoser said:

Missiles still all cost 2 points too much, except barrage and prockets which don't cost enough.

What do the devs have against missiles?!

Borons seem real good

 

Also yeah, FOs got some real nice tax breaks 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Magnus Grendel said:

Passive sensors being nice and cheap is cool, too. 3 points makes them a nice, viable choice for missile-armed low initiative TIE/sf.

5 zetas with passives and homing missiles sounds tempting.

I almost want Cluster Missiles more (and this is probably the best ship by far for cleave attacks), but 5 auto-damage against a target in all arcs is pretty scary.  Aces don't stand a chance.

Ion Missiles might not be bad, either.  They aren't great, but three charges of 3-red Ion attacks when you'd normally only be throwing 2 dice is an improvement.  Compared to Homing Missiles, they'll have a 84% chance of getting a hit through against 2 agility, 72% against 3 agility (so still fairly scary against aces), and you'll have Ion effects which would make you a lot scarier to low-agility/high-hull ships than Homing Missiles.

//

Angled Deflectors seems cute... but I think it's probably just worse.  In order to gain a meaningful benefit with toughness over just taking Evade actions (which work from any direction), you'll probably need to be reinforced while shielded, which probably means Fanatical doesn't target any sooner.

I can almost see it, however, as a one-of.  A single Fanatical/AD Omega as a bit of a bait ship, dawdling along up the middle.

In general, I think I'd much rather have Optics.  Or 4x Fanatical Omegas and Crack Shot/Gunner Quickdraw, with nothing in the tech/mod slots.

Edited by theBitterFig

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3 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Angled Deflectors seems cute... but I think it's probably just worse.  In order to gain a meaningful benefit with toughness over just taking Evade actions (which work from any direction), you'll probably need to be reinforced while shielded, which probably means Fanatical doesn't target any sooner.

The loss of a shield means you need to stop 1 damage per game to equal the lost shield, and 1 per turn just to equal the evade action you could have done. Added to the fact that Reinforce can't reduce damage to zero, and that it sits in the same slot as hull upgrade, it may not be that great a plan for the TIE/sf or TIE/fo.

It might be mildly amusing on Commander Malarus just to further increase the oh-for-god's-sake-just-die-already nature of her pilot ability, but the problem remains that ridiculously tough for a TIE fighter as she is, you still can't force people to shoot at her. She's not a bad 'bait' unit herself, though, and I'm still not convinced just using evade won't get you as near as darn it the same effective durability.

3 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

I almost want Cluster Missiles more (and this is probably the best ship by far for cleave attacks),

I think Cluster Missiles are probably best with stuff like Fanatial to give passive modifiers or double modifications. Since they're only range 1-2, the usual gripes about target locks aren't so much of an issue, since you can close and lock and an opponent can't duck 'under' your missile range. They're still nice, but I'd probably rather take the cheaper Fire Control and benefit from 4 turns of 3-dice fire at range 2.

One thing I'm aware of is that 9 points lets you equip a ship with Passive Sensors and Targeting Synchroniser. That feels like a nasty combination.

3 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Ion Missiles might not be bad, either.  They aren't great, but three charges of 3-red Ion attacks when you'd normally only be throwing 2 dice is an improvement. 

I think they're very underrated. 6 points for a pseudo-upgrade to a 3-dice attack is very nice, especially since you can engage at range 3 with no penalty. Yes, 1 damage cap, but 1 damage is good enough from a 'basic' 3 dice attack, and anyone getting ionized in front of a 5-ship swarm which still has primary weapons to fire at range 1 is going to know about it. Being able to bung missiles out the tailpipe makes it in a lot of ways more tempting than special forces gunner.

 

Honestly, a mix of ordnance probably works. 3 with homing missiles and 2 flankers with Ion missiles, or 3 with Fire Control/Cluster Missiles in front and 2 with Passive Sensors and Concussion Missiles in the back row, for example

 

8 hours ago, ficklegreendice said:

Borons seem real good

As do Barrage Missiles, even with a slightly up-ticked price. But then I guess that's the difference between Upgrade_missile.png missiles that light and medium fighters like TIE/sf, RZ-1 A-wings and Khiraxz can pack and Upgrade_missile.pngUpgrade_missile.png missiles you can load onto 'proper' missile boats like TIE/sa, TIE/ca, BTL-S8 K-wings and OS-1 Starwings.

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3 hours ago, Magnus Grendel said:

I think Cluster Missiles are probably best with stuff like Fanatial to give passive modifiers or double modifications. Since they're only range 1-2, the usual gripes about target locks aren't so much of an issue, since you can close and lock and an opponent can't duck 'under' your missile range. They're still nice, but I'd probably rather take the cheaper Fire Control and benefit from 4 turns of 3-dice fire at range 2.

Alas, Fanatical is Primary-Only.  I'm sure I've made the mistake a few times.

As to Cluster... I wonder.  It hasn't seen much play, when theoretically easy to fire from a normal lock.  I know enough to be sure that not everything that gets played or doesn't get played in this game is entirely based on how good something is or isn't; that preconceived notions factor into all of this greatly.  Clusters are almost surely underplayed because people think their bad as much as the actual truth of them.  However, I do think that investing in Passive Sensors would make Cluster Missiles more effective.  At very least, being able to pick a target immediately before attacking also eliminates the problem of wasted locks from a target being destroyed, and the turret-swing enabled by Passive Sensors also seems like it might occasionally be handy.

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19 minutes ago, theBitterFig said:

Alas, Fanatical is Primary-Only.  I'm sure I've made the mistake a few times.

As to Cluster... I wonder.  It hasn't seen much play, when theoretically easy to fire from a normal lock.  I know enough to be sure that not everything that gets played or doesn't get played in this game is entirely based on how good something is or isn't; that preconceived notions factor into all of this greatly.  Clusters are almost surely underplayed because people think their bad as much as the actual truth of them.  However, I do think that investing in Passive Sensors would make Cluster Missiles more effective.  At very least, being able to pick a target immediately before attacking also eliminates the problem of wasted locks from a target being destroyed, and the turret-swing enabled by Passive Sensors also seems like it might occasionally be handy.

That's a fair point. The start-of-engagement Lock action lets you /link/rotate at the start of the engagement phase. I was fixated on the initial Passive Sensors action not being linked to anything that I forgot the latter (I think I might have also thought it was 'acquire a lock' not a lock action, too).

 

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, Magnus Grendel said:

That's a fair point. The start-of-engagement Lock action lets you /link/rotate at the start of the engagement phase. I was fixated on the initial Passive Sensors action not being linked to anything that I forgot the latter (I think I might have also thought it was 'acquire a lock' not a lock action, too).

 

Passive sensors activates "when you engage", not at the start of the engagement phase. That's potentially better in the rare case of an enemy moving before you engage (like Turr Phennir) but it also means that the calculate option for defence isn't available before your own attack.

Edited by Dasharr

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23 minutes ago, Dasharr said:

Passive sensors activates "when you engage", not at the start of the engagement phase. That's potentially better in the rare case of an enemy moving before you engage (like Turr Phennir) but it also means that the calculate option for defence isn't available before your own attack.

Doubly good. It means, as noted, no wasted shots from overkill.

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On 6/19/2019 at 4:56 PM, ClassicalMoser said:

6 TIE/fos can't even be all-named, even without upgrades.

Lieutenant Rivas (28)

TN-3465 (29)

“Muse” (31)

“Null” (31)

“Longshot” (32)

“Scorch” (34)
Total: 185

View in Yet Another Squad Builder 2.0

 

That's the cheapest 6 with 15 pts to spare.   

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