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Vader in a TIE Defender

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Posted (edited)

178.

Edit: That might be too harsh. 149.

Edit II: Trying to be realistic and think logically here. He would be so powerful it would be stupid. Imagine facing Vader in a defender and having to deal with the potential 4k into a barrel roll, boost, focus with a free evade thrown on top. Then having to plan for it again the next turn, or not. Then having to plan for it again if it didn't happen on the previous turn. Then having to plan for it again in two turns. It's just stupid. It would not be fun.

Considering that you have to have at least a two-ship list, he would have to be priced such that he can't have Soontir, Whisper, or Grand Inquisitor. Even at 149 he could still be paired with Echo, Homing Missile 5th Bro, Duchess, or Afterburners Maarek.

Even 156 might still be low for him. At 156 you could fit two Academy pilots for that three ship list. At 156 you could take one Academy and have a 22 point bid, you could still take Duchess, Countdown, Pure Sabacc, a Supernatural Inquisitor, 5th Bro, 7th Sister, Turr Phennir, etc. All of these pilots are strong. He would have to be priced ridiculously high and probably would break the game if it existed. It would be stupid.

It would change list building so much that you either build to fly him or you build to fly against him which in all likelihood would mean that you fly him but with a bigger bid. It would be stupid.

Edited by Skitch_

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Well, Vader in the x1 is 22 points over i5 Maarek, so I think at least 22 more than Rexler which is the i5 Defender.  That would be 103.  But if you could keep the Vesery (perpetual lock) or Countess (free u-turn) abilities too and price from there?  I think 120?

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110 without upgrades, and yes I’d fly it exclusively. I can just see it now

Darth Vader (110)

Inquisitor (35) Supernatural Reflexes (43)

Inquisitor (35) Supernatural Reflexes (43)

(196) 😂😂

 

 

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Posted (edited)

There is a critical mass of defensive ability in X-wing (that I would argue some ships already have hit) that make the lists oppressive to any list that doesn't specifically plan around shooting at them.

Vader is extremely strong (he is one of the most used pilots in the game's history) but while he is much better at defending than a lot of other aces, he isn't so good at it that when you get a solid arc or two on him for more than one turn he doesn't die, but instead tends to die fantastically and decisively, which creates a positive gameplay loop: Vader's strengths and weaknesses as a ship synergize to make it actively fun (to a certain extent) to fight against. I think this scene sumarizes what it feels like to body Vader as he seems to move around at super speed feels like, you zero in on where he is going to go and it feels like your suddenly acting in slow-mo despite the fact it is a turn based game as you get ready to toss him out of existence. It feels POWERFUL, you got to shoot a torpeedo/3 B-wing shots/bumped him with a droid and then finished with 2 calculated shots and now the evil has been defeated and you prooooobably win, it is super triumphant!

Defender Vader loses that critical aspect of why, despite Vader having legitimately stupid action economy (Potentially 5 effective actions a turn with a pre-obtained lock and FCS, his regular action, his bonus action, his force point as a mod, and afterburners) he doesn't feel soul crushing: He isn't just killable by focus fire, he actively dies fast to focus fire. Defender Vader, with an extra 2 health and free evade every turn, is much harder to actively kill even if you maintain good uptime with ships not able to double mod range 1 shots. He resembles Boba where he becomes a super good ace who also happens to be tough enough that he can reasonably joust most lists that could exist in the game with minimal support.

As such it can't exist at any price point. The argument 'it can't be usable and fair' is often overused (often times by people who just don't like a given mechanic rather than it actually being oppressive once it gets usable and instead just forces you to play around it), but in this case its really accurate: Vader in a Defender being remotely playable actively locks down a LOT of lists from ever potentially existing, negatively affecting both tournament diversity (It is hard to imagine a 3 ship list ever seriously hurting Vadefender just because he can and will defensively mod against 3 seperate attacks even if he lands in all 3 of their arcs, which is unlikely) and the casual scene (Which is worse, it creates too high a gap between a good list and a bad list which is what kills casual scenes which eventually kills the competitive scene).

As such, Vader would need to be reworked to make sense in a Defender, and honestly the defender just shouldn't ever get access to force anyway unless force was reworked to not interact as potently with defenses (which, honestly, might be good for the game).

Edited by dezzmont

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depends on the format tbh

in a two player competitive game, just shouldn't be allowed no matter what, it's going to be an NPE for at least one of the two players. 

if you're playing some kind of fun/casual game, especially a singleplayer/hotac kinda thing, knock yourself out, I'd expect somewhere around 130-160 points is the "balanced" cost 

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I personally believe it should be 143 just so you could also fit Supernatural reflexes, and Passive on Vader and a tie in. Just imagine the sheer power of being able to do actions whenever you want. Before you move? Super has got you covered. After you fully execute a maneuver (even if onto a rock)? Full throttle has got your back. Literally in the engagement phase? Passive Sensors baby! And you can Vader chain actions off of all of these. If people think Guri is bad, wait until Vader comes out in a defender. 😈 😂

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6 minutes ago, NoobMaster70 said:

I personally believe it should be 143 just so you could also fit Supernatural reflexes, and Passive on Vader and a tie in. Just imagine the sheer power of being able to do actions whenever you want. Before you move? Super has got you covered. After you fully execute a maneuver (even if onto a rock)? Full throttle has got your back. Literally in the engagement phase? Passive Sensors baby! And you can Vader chain actions off of all of these. If people think Guri is bad, wait until Vader comes out in a defender. 😈 😂

This should never happen. If Vader in a defender were to be a thing, he shouldn’t have access to SNR, I’d go as far to say he shouldn’t have access to Precog or even Advance sensors. With hate equipped, we’re talking about a ship that can white 4K, double stressless reposition and receives an evade just about every turn. Plus, if for some reason the Vader player allowed a 5X squad to have all 5 shots on him in a single turn, they shouldn’t expect Vader to be destroyed, in fact they shouldn’t even expect him to be reduced to half health (with full force and hate). Which is insane!

All Vader would need to do is destroy enough points to go above his wingmate and then just proceed to run for the remainder of the game. 

If he were to be included in a defender I don’t think 178 would be unreasonable. 

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13 hours ago, FTS Gecko said:

Assuming Vader keeps his usual ability... how many points would you suggest we're looking at?

147. That way he can't take SNR and have an academy pilot. 

If he could take SNR he can't be reasonably balanced.

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54 minutes ago, Roundy1161 said:

147. That way he can't take SNR and have an academy pilot. 

If he could take SNR he can't be reasonably balanced.

Defender Vader cannot be reasonably balanced for 75 min, 200 v 200 much less in shop pickup games. **** it'd be incredibly hard to balance him in the Defender for Epic games.

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2 hours ago, Roundy1161 said:

147. That way he can't take SNR and have an academy pilot. 

If he could take SNR he can't be reasonably balanced.

Who needs SNR? Just give him Precog or AdvS and he'll solo any 200 point list you put in front of him.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, DR4CO said:

Who needs SNR? Just give him Precog or AdvS and he'll solo any 200 point list you put in front of him.

There are lists that could deal with that, but that more points to the current state of X-wing not being as healthy as some might argue it is more than that combination not being completely stupid.

That is actually a really good litmus test: Any list that feels like it could handle Vader with that without seriously risking losing the game probably is way too overtuned at the moment. I don't think Jedi make that cut, but I could see Boba focused lists definitely making it, as well as droid swarms.

Edited by dezzmont

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Are we getting into a paradox here? A ship that strong needs to be high in points to represent its worth. However, the more points it has, the more points it can deny the opponent. If we were talking about a 20 hit point ship with 0 agility, but tons of other cool stuff, then more points are just fine. With Vader in a ship that can move this well, has this much beef, gets a free evade, and can double reposition at I 6 with two force tokens left in the bank, this has to be considered a superior points fortress. 

I don't think Vader in this ship makes for a game worth playing.

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12 minutes ago, BDrafty said:

Are we getting into a paradox here? A ship that strong needs to be high in points to represent its worth. However, the more points it has, the more points it can deny the opponent. If we were talking about a 20 hit point ship with 0 agility, but tons of other cool stuff, then more points are just fine. With Vader in a ship that can move this well, has this much beef, gets a free evade, and can double reposition at I 6 with two force tokens left in the bank, this has to be considered a superior points fortress. 

I don't think Vader in this ship makes for a game worth playing.

Which is why my suggested pricing is basically "Defender Vader + Academy - 1 = 200" using the 2 ship minimum for tournament play as a way to say "Dumpster this broken as **** idea".

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Posted (edited)

As long as the ship has that white 4k, definitely shouldn't have Vader in the game with the ability he has. Even without the white 4k, probably still shouldn't have Vader. Vader with a different ability would be acceptable. Maybe give him his crew ability instead, or one of the Anakin abilities? The stress removal one is kind of funny on this platform (EDIT: I forgot about the 2-K turn, maybe not actually that funny). The barrel roll one is like his current ability but would at least be more limited in options.

Edited by CaptainJaguarShark

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Here a math trick. Take the cheapest x1 with the same pilot skill of the cheapest Defender, not considering unique pilots. Say it cost 10 points. Say that Vader cost 50: you have a 40 points margin that is the cost of Vader per sè.

Pump the defender you want rising pilot skill and giving vader special rules and you get it.

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1 hour ago, CapitanGuinea said:

Here a math trick. Take the cheapest x1 with the same pilot skill of the cheapest Defender, not considering unique pilots. Say it cost 10 points. Say that Vader cost 50: you have a 40 points margin that is the cost of Vader per sè.

Pump the defender you want rising pilot skill and giving vader special rules and you get it.

There's no overlap.  x1 generics are 2 and 3, Defender generics are 1 and 4.

If we're looking at Vader vs Tempest, he's 31 points more than the generic, but that's also 86.1% more.  Applying 31 points to a Delta Defender would yield 67+31 = 98 points, which would be absurdly low.  Even Delta at 67*1.861 = 125 seems low to me.

Maybe it'd be better to compare to Init 5s, since each ship has one with probably roughly comparable pilot ability strengths.  Vader is 22 points more than Maarek Stele, a 48.9% increase.  Applying this to Rexler Brath creates only a 81+22 = 103 or 81*1.489 = 121.  So not really a better method of doing points.

A large part of this is that Vader gets to use the free Evade action from Full Throttle to trigger his pilot ability.  Just fly over a rock, and you can still do all your actions.  Add in Supernatural Reflexes, and a lot of these low price Defender-Vaders could still fly with a pretty capable 2nd ship.  The addition methods would still allow SNR Vader plus Soontir, and that'd just be hellish to fly against.

While these methods might work for pilots who are middle-tier (Ved Folso in a Defender at about the same cost as Ryad would be interesting), it *REALLY* doesn't make sense with highly skewed Initiative 6 and a pilot ability as strong as Vader.

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Great discussion guys!

As a campaign scenario, it would be great to have a mission where Vader flies solo in a TIE Defender and the other player tries to hunt him down. The opposing player (or AI) gets a set amount of points to field a hunting party. Other options could be that Vader faces successive waves of increasingly stronger ships until he either survives (say x number of waves) or gets overwhelmed. Variants from the regular competitive game is what makes campaign so great. This reminds me of Starcraft 2's campaign, where it had many variants/mechanics not present on the regular competitive variant.

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