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GuacCousteau

Should Twin Ion Engine Mark II make a reappearance?

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The announcement of Ion Thruster Override as a talent, with it's "TIE" restriction and the blanket ability of the V-Wing to equip "TIE" restricted upgrades suggests that FFG are looking to reopen the design space for TIE only upgrades. 

In 1e, we saw this come about with two modification upgrades: Lightweight Frame and Twin Ion Engine Mark II. I'm guessing that no one except Striker and TIE Bomber players want to see Lightweight Frame come back, though, so let's talk about T.I.E MkII

 

Twin Ion Engine Mk II had the simple effect of making all bank maneuvers green (now blue).

 

T.I.E Mk II presents an interesting question, I feel. It occupied a little niche that actually very few cards did - an upgrade card that is simply a straight upgrade. Take something you already have and make it better for an appropriate amount of points. 

 

Interestingly, most of this niche has actually been preserved in 2e. R2 Astromech became R4 Astromech and is now half the cost for the same effect. Scum lost Salvaged Astromech, but gained R4 anyway with the slot itself becoming unified. Nien Nunb got better on the ship he's supposed to work with (Lando in the Falcon). Hull and Shield Upgrade both made the cut, even after a lot of other 1e Modifications were dropped for 2e. 

 

Is this a good thing, though? Are straight upgrades good for the game or should each upgrade card present more of a choice? Would T.I.E Mk II basically just be an Imperial/FO R4 and be just as inoffensive? Or is universally making all TIE dials better a dangerous proposition? Is the fact that this is now Nien Nunb's unique ability an issue? Would it be unfair for the Imperials to get a 'generic' upgrade that can be applied to all ships in a list that does the same thing as an effect Rebels can only apply once?

It was barely taken in 1e, and most TIE dials haven't changed in 2e. But is stress mitigation more of an important mechanic now that shouldn't be sidelined? 

Would this simply come down to cost? Is there even a possible cost for such an upgrade that makes it an interesting decision, or is one cost an autoinclude and a point above that never taken?

 

Interested to hear your thoughts. If T.I.E MkII is a bad upgrade, then what might a good upgrade that occupies this new TIE only niche look like?

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Posted (edited)

I think that's the worst possible design case for such a wide category of upgrade and when I saw the return of TIE upgrades I immediately feared a return to 1.0 design.

You can never design a TIE ship or pilot around its dial ever again and every TIE becomes much less distinctive. And for all the interest people think it would add, it would actually just go on Soontir, Kylo, Whisper, etc.

 

edit: I will add that the one TIE upgrade revealed so far, the weird barrel rolling ion thing, doesn't make me mad. So far, so good, I guess.

Edited by svelok

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Posted (edited)

I'd rather see a TIE version of R4-P than R4.  Heck, I think R4 should be R4-P.  Mostly, I think generic "reduce the difficulty of your X maneuvers" upgrades are kinda boring, and we'd do better to see other kinds of effects.  Even if there weren't long-run issues with constrained design space, per @svelok .

If I'm coming up with a T.I.E. Mk II, and trying to come up with a different effect, it might be cool to do something like "After you fully execute a white maneuver, you may remove 1 deplete, strain, or stress token.  If you do, you cannot perform additional actions during your activation."  Basically, it turns everything blue-ish, but only for removing these tokens.  It's a quality of life tool, rather than a combo tool or something that makes you more powerful (at least not *this* turn).  You wouldn't get any more actions pulling white moves while stressed than without the upgrade, but you do get less stress.

It'd also be something that could probably be pretty cheap, since the abuse potential is pretty dang low.

39 minutes ago, GuacCousteau said:

R2 Astromech became R4 Astromech and is now half the cost for the same effect.

Nitpick: Old R2 (and Unhinged) were 1/100 points, new R4 is 2/200 points, so the same cost.

Edited by theBitterFig

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Just now, theBitterFig said:

If I'm coming up with a T.I.E. Mk II, and trying to come up with a different effect, it might be cool to do something like "After you fully execute a white maneuver, you may remove 1 deplete, strain, or stress token.  If you do, you cannot perform additional actions during your activation."  Basically, it turns everything blue-ish, but only for removing these tokens.  It's a quality of life tool, rather than a combo tool or something that makes you more powerful.  You wouldn't get any more actions pulling white moves while stressed than without the upgrade, but you do get less stress.

Indeed. Stuff with a side-effect would be nice; I'm not a fan of 'easy choices'.

I'd consider doing it the other way; rather than making a manoeuvre blue, maybe make blue manoeuvres 'extra blue' - a trigger like "after you fully execute a blue manoeuvre" means that it's harder to trigger on a TIE bomber or punisher (but may be proportionately more valuable) whilst a TIE interceptor can trigger it all the time....but it's a flimsy ship that may not get the benefit out of it.

Maybe something like a charge-based "remove extra red tokens" effect? That sort of fits a ship which can stabilize from extreme  manoeuvres fast.

Alternatively, maybe a superior boost/roll ability. Rather than daredevil's optional hard-turn-red-boost, how about an optional speed-2-red-boost? 

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Posted (edited)

assuming that is a modification i think i would for shure try it on:

tie interceptor

tie reaper

because they tend to stress themselves a lot

i can be good but not essential also on barrage bombers (once you k turn your blues speed 1 options to stay at range 2-3 now are very limited)

all the others imperial ships can for shure have benefit from it but only occasionally game changing.

first order's ships can benefit too from it but their dials tends to be more blue and their ships more tanky than the imperial's one, so MAYBE it could be less important to have it. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Manolox

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Make it medium base only. Or make it cheap on mediums and expensive on smalls. The Reaper, Brute, and Punisher wouldn't be broken with it (the Brute almost already has this with the config). The Reaper would probably love it, especially with Ion Limiter Overdrive. The ship might be maneuverable again.

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Before I go into anything point by point, I just want to be clear that I'm not advocating for the card to return, I'm just interested in what people have to say now that this design space is back.

 

52 minutes ago, svelok said:

when I saw the return of TIE upgrades I immediately feared a return to 1.0 design.

 

Why? What do you mean by that? Like I said, there's a lot of straight upgrades that were '1.0 design' that were inoffensive in 1, have made the jump to 2e and are still inoffensive here. R4 and Hull/Shield Upgrade were the examples I used, and they seem to occupy the exact same space as T.I.E. MkII to me. Are they not '1.0 design'? Why would this be different?

 

56 minutes ago, svelok said:

You can never design a TIE ship or pilot around its dial ever again

 

Why not? This upgrade isn't overwriting whole dials. You can still build in weaknesses and strengths in a dial. Would it really be so difficult to design more TIE pilots while remembering there's one upgrade that will improve their dial a bit. T.I.E MkII came out with the TIE Punisher in 1e, that was Wave 7. It didn't stop them designing the TIE/fo, the TIE/sf, the TIE Aggressor, the TIE Striker or the TIE Silencer.

It's actually even easier now because the card doesn't have to set every bank to blue, it can reduce the difficulty instead - which means that a future TIE with red 3 banks is always going to have 3 banks that are more difficult than its other bank maneuvers, upgrade or not. 

 

1 hour ago, svelok said:

every TIE becomes much less distinctive.

 

... does it though? This ties in with the above point, changing the difficulty of a couple of banks really doesn't overwrite the whole dial. Most TIE dials really don't gain all that much from the card, as they tend to only have 2 speeds of banks and usually have at least one of those speeds blue anyway. And the rest of the dial is far more responsible for what makes each TIE unique. What banks you even have available and what difficulty the turns are is basically the means by which TIE dials are distinguished, and that wouldn't change. 

This is to say nothing of the fact that two of the ships that might want it most - the TIE Defender and the TIE Advanced v1 - can't even take it because they don't have the modification slot. 

This is yet another means by which FFG have more space than they did in 1e to distinguish between different TIEs, and to control how they design pilots and new TIE dials. If T.I.E Mk II would potentially be problematic on a new TIE, they can just leave off the mod slot. It's not like the current crop of TIES are falling over themselves to fill that slot. 

 

I want to say that I'm in complete agreement that straight upgrades are boring. But tbh that seems to be the only argument you have against it that holds up. I don't see any mechanical issues with it. 

No more than R4 astromech, anyway. R4 can be taken on three of the Rebels' small base fighters and one small base support ship. That's a fair array, if not quite comparable to the number of TIEs the Empire has (just comparing two factions here, to try and keep it simple). R4 is a straight upgrade on the Y-Wing, X-Wing and Sheathipede. It gives the E-Wing arguably the best dial in the game, and yet conventional wisdom is that the more expensive R3 astromech is a better choice. R4 is the cheapest astromech in the game, it gives the E-Wing the best dial in the game and yet it's still never taken. And there's a strong argument, IMO, that giving ships access to a blue turn where they don't already have one (something it does for all the Rebel ships that can take it) is a better ability than gaining a couple more blue banks. 

So why would T.I.E Mk II be so much more mechanically worse for the game? Is it simply the range of ships it can be taken on?

 

1 hour ago, svelok said:

it would actually just go on Soontir, Kylo, Whisper, etc.

 

It couldn't go on Kylo, as the Silencer doesn't have a mod slot. I don't think Whisper cares at all for it, as she's barely ever stressed anyway.

I agree that Soontir probably loves it, and I agree that's a problem. But really all he stands to gain is an extra pair of blue banks. Annoying, but given that people can't even seem to agree if giving him a whole extra offensive action for just 3 points is worth it, is it not conceivable that this could be suitably priced in a way that discourages him taking it? Maybe even Initiative scaling?

 

1 hour ago, svelok said:

edit: I will add that the one TIE upgrade revealed so far, the weird barrel rolling ion thing, doesn't make me mad. So far, so good, I guess.

 

So what else could a good TIE upgrade look like? Obviously Override is a cool idea because it can gain you something at a cost, but I do wonder if the dice based punishment will mean it goes the way of all the other dice based upgrades and never get used (unless you're Han and have some control over it).

I like that it's a talent. It suggests it's something that good, experienced TIE pilots learn that's specific to TIEs. I love that we're getting something similar for A-Wings too, and I kinda hope we can see more talents that reflect experience with a specific type or line of ship. 

Do you think other TIE only upgrades should be limited to modifications or talents, where the majority of specific ships have access to it? Or do you think TIE only missiles or payloads could become a thing?

 

1 hour ago, theBitterFig said:

I'd rather see a TIE version of R4-P than R4.  Heck, I think R4 should be R4-P.  Mostly, I think generic "reduce the difficulty of your X maneuvers" upgrades are kinda boring

 

Again, I agree that such straight upgrades are boring; but again this seems to be your only actual argument against it.

If R4 is bad design and R4-P is good design then why isn't R4 taken more? Shouldn't more people be looking to exploit that bad design?

What's funny is that I've argued previously that R4 is the best astromech in the game and been completely shot down.

 

Is the reason simply that FFG have been quite smart in their design process so far and made sure that any ship that can take R4 doesn't need the same level of stress removal as, say, Soontir?

 

1 hour ago, theBitterFig said:

Even if there weren't long-run issues with constrained design space, per @svelok .

 

Again, maybe I'm just not thinking it through but I'm failing to see how this constrains design space. 

What option is taken away from FFG by the inclusion of such an upgrade? It can't be that it would mean they can't include a TIE with no native blue banks, because the existence of R4 didn't stop FFG designing the Republic Y-Wing with white 1 and 2 banks and white 2 turns. It can't be that it would stop them bringing in a TIE that already has all blue banks as its unique feature, because you can simply discount the ship's point cost to make it cheaper than an equivalent TIE with the modification.  It can't be that it stops them including red banks as a balancing feature, because making the upgrade reduce difficulty (instead of flat all blue) still gives you a difficulty curve across the different banks. 

And again, if all blue banks would really be problematic on a TIE in terms of what can on its dial, or how much it stands to gain then you can simply leave off the mod slot, like the TIE Defender and TIE Advanced v1. 

 

1 hour ago, theBitterFig said:

If I'm coming up with a T.I.E. Mk II, and trying to come up with a different effect, it might be cool to do something like "After you fully execute a white maneuver, you may remove 1 deplete, strain, or stress token.  If you do, you cannot perform additional actions during your activation."  Basically, it turns everything blue-ish, but only for removing these tokens.  It's a quality of life tool, rather than a combo tool or something that makes you more powerful (at least not *this* turn).  You wouldn't get any more actions pulling white moves while stressed than without the upgrade, but you do get less stress.

 

This is a really interesting idea. It's definitely the sort of thing I think is more fun both from a list building challenge perspective and to actually play out on the table and make decisions round. "If I 2 bank, I'm definitely getting shot but I'll get a focus action to help. If I 3 bank I can still clear the stress so the dial is fully open again next turn, and I might dodge the shot so it might be the better maneuver, but if I'm wrong and still getting shot I can't focus."

 

I'd definitely give this a spin if it became a real upgrade. 

 

32 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

Make it medium base only. Or make it cheap on mediums and expensive on smalls. The Reaper, Brute, and Punisher wouldn't be broken with it (the Brute almost already has this with the config). The Reaper would probably love it, especially with Ion Limiter Overdrive. The ship might be maneuverable again.

 

I really like this. 

It fits with the original 1e iteration of the card, which came with the Punisher and was implied to be to help out bigger, lumbering TIEs at a cost. It avoids most of the worst cases where it could be a problematic upgrade, and helps out the ship that probably needs it most - the TIE Reaper. It's one thing to use dials as a balancing tool, and to say that the Reaper had to have a bad dial to compensate for being a medium base with adaptive ailerons, but I would argue things went a bit too far and the Reaper really struggles to manage stress. Paying points to mitigate that seems no different for paying points for Tactical Officer to mitigate red co-ordinates. 

 

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Posted (edited)
53 minutes ago, GuacCousteau said:

Again, I agree that such straight upgrades are boring; but again this seems to be your only actual argument against it.

If R4 is bad design and R4-P is good design then why isn't R4 taken more? Shouldn't more people be looking to exploit that bad design?

What's funny is that I've argued previously that R4 is the best astromech in the game and been completely shot down.

 

Is the reason simply that FFG have been quite smart in their design process so far and made sure that any ship that can take R4 doesn't need the same level of stress removal as, say, Soontir?

That last bit pretty much nails it.  Most ships which can take R4 don't really need it.  Some TIEs, however, could probably get a lot more out of a plain Mk.II.

Meanwhile, R4 is practically stapled to Poe, since it's actually good on him.

53 minutes ago, GuacCousteau said:

Again, maybe I'm just not thinking it through but I'm failing to see how this constrains design space. 

And again, if all blue banks would really be problematic on a TIE in terms of what can on its dial, or how much it stands to gain then you can simply leave off the mod slot, like the TIE Defender and TIE Advanced v1. 

This answers the question.

There are ships where having all blue banks would be more powerful than intended.  That can be addressed by removing the slot, but then that's another thing lost.  TIE Mk.II means FFG loses control of either the dial or the slots on a ship.  That's a really big decision to make for all TIEs for all time.

Meanwhile, I think the R4 has constrained Design Space.  If it wasn't there giving the E-Wing such a great dial, they might have come along with linked Focus instead of linked Lock.  There's no 3 red dice astromech ship with useful linked actions.  X-Wings become 2 red ships with Foils Closed.

What makes R4-P nicer is that it forces a player to make choices.  Is this the time I want to use the action?  By simply being something you activate rather than something which is "always on" it gets a lot more interesting.  Maybe it'd be a problem if Soontir could bring it, though... That one time you need to 1-Hard or 3-Bank or whatever, you can. 

//

Meanwhile, what's the real benefit to the game?  What do we get in trade for all TIEs getting a bit more same-y?  Just some better blues, not anything actually cool or interesting.  Like, the upside is so small that it doesn't really seem worth the drawbacks.  All the ships where it be fair gain so little that it doesn't really outweigh the places where it gets strong, or the limitations on slots and dials and linked actions that would happen going forwards.  I'll admit that banks are safe than hard turns to reduce the difficulty (and Defenders and v1 and Silencers already lack the slot), but I'd still rather not see the upgrade in 2e.

Edited by theBitterFig

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1 hour ago, theBitterFig said:

There are ships where having all blue banks would be more powerful than intended.  That can be addressed by removing the slot, but then that's another thing lost.  TIE Mk.II means FFG loses control of either the dial or the slots on a ship.  That's a really big decision to make for all TIEs for all time.

This is why I think limiting it to the Medium base is the right call. Currently, it would only benefit the Reaper, Brute, and Punisher, and the Brute already has a dial reducing config. Managing the dials of all future medium base TIEs is substantially easier that dealing with the myriad of small based TIEs from all of the factions.

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Posted (edited)

You know I've long wanted to see the return of Adrenaline Rush and in all honesty it would be a fantastic use case for TIE-only talents. Not only is it a classically "No-Shields-All-Guts" type card, it would have a great synergy with Rhymer (who wants to reload his APTs) and Tomax (Who wants to recharge his talents).

You could even give it two charges and keep it pretty cheap, though one would probably be safer territory. I wouldn't like to see it combinable with Leia (resistance or rebel) because it turns everything into a TIE Defender, or combinable with CC because it allows for a pretty crazy string of stress-freedom. TIE Only seems like a cool way to faction-balance it and still keep it pretty cheap for that crucial 3rd-turn turnaround.

Honestly, Malarus might like it too. Hmmm...

Edited by ClassicalMoser

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RE: Medium Base per @5050Saint

I mean, it'd be better than everything, but I'd still rather not do it.

Another thought if this had to happen: "Experimental Twin Ion Engine."  Make it one-dot limited, like Nien Nunb.  Kind of makes up for the fact that Imperial often don't have access to crew upgrades which might provide something similar.  And again, I'd still rather not.

Just now, ClassicalMoser said:

You know I've long wanted to see the return of Adrenaline Rush and in all honesty it would be a fantastic use case for TIE-only talents. Not only is it a classically "No-Shields-All-Guts" type card, it would have a great synergy with Rhymer (who wants to reload his APTs) and Tomax (Who wants to recharge his talents).

You could even give it two charges and keep it pretty cheap, though one would probably be safer territory. I wouldn't like to see it combinable with Leia (resistance or rebel) because it turns everything into a TIE Defender, or combinable with CC because it allows for a pretty crazy string of stress-freedom. TIE Only seems like a cool way to faction-balance it.

Honestly, Malarus might like it too. Hmmm...

Stuff like Adrenaline Rush or Cool Hand or Lighting Reflexes as TIE-only upgrades could be pretty sweet.  Certainly a lot more zest than Mk.II

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It would be mostly fine but I'd prefer they design it in a different way for second edition. The name and the theme of greater speed are fine, but don't just copy paste that ability because it is boring and too enabling and too annoying to design around.

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

Again, I agree that such straight upgrades are boring; but again this seems to be your only actual argument against it.

If R4 is bad design and R4-P is good design then why isn't R4 taken more? Shouldn't more people be looking to exploit that bad design?

What's funny is that I've argued previously that R4 is the best astromech in the game and been completely shot down.

I think it's because it's just kind of boring, and also I'm not sure there are currently enough ships that get a huge swing from it. 

Y-wings in 1st edition loved r2 in 1st because they could only go straight after a red maneuver, but y-wings in second at least have 1 banks as blue, making r4 a little less useful. I think most of the ships that can take R4  have similar arguments. The ones it might be most useful on are ships that have a red maneuver at 1 and/or 2 but most of those probably still won't care because it's their turn that's usually red, so they could still bank in a lot of situations.

To me it seems the strongest places for R4 that we're currently aware of is the BTL-B Y-Wing and the upcoming V-Wing. BTL-B gets out of it what the 1st edition Y-wing did, the ability to clear stress while doing something other than going directly straight. For V-wings, I think the strength is primarily in turning the 1 banks to white. Being able to go a bit slower can be fairly significant.

Being able to do a  turn maneuver and clear stress is useful (such as for BTL-A4), and being able to turn without gaining stress is also useful (such as resistance transport).  I just don't think most of the ships that can take astros care enough about changing those scenarios.

R4-P by comparison is just more interesting. Situations where you really need dice mod after a k-turn, or where you've been stressed by some other effect the previous turn and you really don't want to be stressed this turn, and you then have to make the choice of whether spending the charge now or later makes more sense.

I really wish FFG had not brought R4 as it was (well, as R2 was) but did something charge based or something with at least a decision point. Maybe not exactly R4-P but something in that direction.

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17 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Meanwhile, R4 is practically stapled to Poe, since it's actually good on him.

Interesting point. The one astromech equipped pilot that actually does have a regular stress interaction has R4 stapled to him, even though the gain is 'only' the 2 hard turns. I suppose it does show that TIE MkII would probably end up stapled to Soontir, even if 'only' for the 3 banks, and basically not be used anywhere else. 

Which I agree is not a good upgrade.

17 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

There are ships where having all blue banks would be more powerful than intended.  That can be addressed by removing the slot, but then that's another thing lost.  TIE Mk.II means FFG loses control of either the dial or the slots on a ship.  That's a really big decision to make for all TIEs for all time.

I'm not sure I agree that having options around dial and slot equates to a loss of control for FFG, but that's probably just semantics at this point. I get what you mean. A certain dial might require a TIE to lose the mod slot so that it can't take TIE MkII, which in turn might cause it to lose out on Targeting Computer, or something that could be a balanced upgrade for it. 

My only hesitation around this argument is that it feels a bit in a vacuum. By that I mean that the dial itself is a balancing element. If a future TIE is coming with a dial that needs to be restricted, it's probably because it's offsetting some other strength. The TIE Defender, for example, has one of the worst TIE dials in terms of turns, but that's because it's balancing a very strong straight part of the dial and a very strong statline with a great ship ability. That's also why it lacks the mod slot. In other words, in my mind any TIE with a dial bad enough to really benefit from TIE Mk II is probably balanced in some other way and probably isn't coming with the mod slot anyway. Or it's the TIE Reaper where it's just a genuinely bad dial.

That's not to say I don't agree in general, though. TIE MkII probably just overwrites too much of the dial to make the original design choices matter. 

17 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Meanwhile, I think the R4 has constrained Design Space.  If it wasn't there giving the E-Wing such a great dial, they might have come along with linked Focus instead of linked Lock.  There's no 3 red dice astromech ship with useful linked actions.  X-Wings become 2 red ships with Foils Closed.

This is a really interesting point. 

At first I was going to say I disagree, and that R4 is pretty innocuous all things considered. But it's worth considering. I don't think the simple existence of R4 is the reason no 3 dice astromech has good linked actions - I think that's more likely just a coincidental balancing decision. But it worth thinking about. In the E-Wing's case, I really do think it was just ill thought out design on FFG's part to make the linked action a lock. I think Experimental Scanners is far, far more likely to be the reason the E-Wing doesn't reposition into red focus - it would allow them a reposition and double mods incredibly easily and the stress would always have been worth it regardless of the existence of R4. I think if they had linked focus actions instead, you'd still see most E-Wings taking R3 astromech.

But equally, it's probably something that had to be considered. I wouldn't be surprised if the hard 1 turns are red natively because of the existence of R4, for example (though again, part of me thinks that's an area where list building design space has been improved by R4's inclusion - FFG realised they could give the E-Wing hard turns and could even give them white hard 1s, but only if the player was willing to pay a little more in terms of points and miss out on R2 or R3, otherwise they're red).

Here's another question though: would an E-Wing with a linked boost > barrel roll (but not the other way round) actually be that bad even with R4 on the table? Like, sure it would be powerful. But isn't that a bit the point? E-Wings are lacking as is, and the Rebels are missing a super ship with a strong ability. FCS, R4 and Experimental Scanners would make for a potent combo, but it might just be good enough to justify the E-Wing's existence. It's a very offensive form of action economy, IMO. And I still think that even then, most people would prefer R3 so they basically never have to worry about taking the lock action past the first turn. In other words, even assuming a best case scenario does R4 actually break things? If not, can we really say that it's R4 limiting the E-Wing (or another similar astro ship) design space?

 

To be clear, I don't really have an answer to that either way. I'm still inclined to agree that R4 is a boring card that arguably doesn't fit the 2e design ethos, but I am interested in the discussion.

 

18 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Meanwhile, what's the real benefit to the game?  What do we get in trade for all TIEs getting a bit more same-y?  Just some better blues, not anything actually cool or interesting.  Like, the upside is so small that it doesn't really seem worth the drawbacks.  All the ships where it be fair gain so little that it doesn't really outweigh the places where it gets strong, or the limitations on slots and dials and linked actions that would happen going forwards.  I'll admit that banks are safe than hard turns to reduce the difficulty (and Defenders and v1 and Silencers already lack the slot), but I'd still rather not see the upgrade in 2e.

 

This is probably the best argument here, to be honest.

You're absolutely right. There's so little of interest to be gained by including this card, beyond the TIE only design space anyway. The only reason I picked it as the subject for the thread was because it was a pre-existing example of what can be done in the TIE only space. 

I guess the only argument for it I have would be to echo @5050Saint and mention the TIE Punisher and TIE Reaper. The TIE Punisher is the ship TIE MkII originally came with, and it felt a little like it's dial was designed around that potential trade off - the dial is terrible, but you can improve it, but doing so means you miss out on Guidance Chips, Long Range Scanners, Munitions Failsafe etc. The 2e Punisher essentially inherited the 1e dial, with minor tweaks, so it kinda feels like it needs its old buddy back. But equally the trade off is gone, there's nothing in that mod slot you really want. And the inclusion of linked actions has changed the balance of the ship too. Straight re-writing the Punisher dial probably isn't a good idea at this point. 

I'd argue that the Reaper probably needs the help though. 

I like the idea of making it medium base only, so that these two ships can benefit without worrying about anyone else, but I also agree something that isn't just a straight difficulty reduction would be better. I'm curious, would a TIE only, medium only modification that does something like your earlier suggestion (white bank can remove stress, but takes away actions for the turn) simply be too niche to be worth including in the game? 

 

16 hours ago, ClassicalMoser said:

You know I've long wanted to see the return of Adrenaline Rush and in all honesty it would be a fantastic use case for TIE-only talents. Not only is it a classically "No-Shields-All-Guts" type card, it would have a great synergy with Rhymer (who wants to reload his APTs) and Tomax (Who wants to recharge his talents).

 

This is a really cool idea.

I'm in agreement that I think a lot of the old 1 point, 1 use talents could come back. Cool Hand, Adrenaline Rush, and Lightning Reflexes all feel like they have a place in 2e, IMO. And obviously Tomax needs something interesting to even start justifying his nerfed, borderline useless ability. 

Making them TIE only does feel pretty themey, and helps control balance. 

I'd maybe say that if they all came back, I wouldn't want them all to be TIE only though. Don't want to give 2.1 factions all the toys. 

 

16 hours ago, svelok said:

pretty much every time someone wants a 1.0 card back

 

So assuming we're talking about the above talents.... why? What's wrong with them? Why are you so opposed to bringing back some things just because they were in 1e?

You know that, like, the majority of cards in 2e were in 1e in some form or other, right? 

Do you feel that every card that carried over unchanged from 1e is bad? Outmaneuver, Intimidation, Daredevil, Hull Upgrade, Shield Upgrade, Pattern Analyzer, Wedge Antilles, Dutch Vander, Maarek Steele, Mauler Mithel, Perceptive Copilot, Jan Ors/Jyn Erso - are these all problem cards?

 

16 hours ago, CaptainJaguarShark said:

It would be mostly fine but I'd prefer they design it in a different way for second edition. The name and the theme of greater speed are fine, but don't just copy paste that ability because it is boring and too enabling and too annoying to design around.

I think it's because it's just kind of boring, and also I'm not sure there are currently enough ships that get a huge swing from it. 

Y-wings in 1st edition loved r2 in 1st because they could only go straight after a red maneuver, but y-wings in second at least have 1 banks as blue, making r4 a little less useful. I think most of the ships that can take R4  have similar arguments. The ones it might be most useful on are ships that have a red maneuver at 1 and/or 2 but most of those probably still won't care because it's their turn that's usually red, so they could still bank in a lot of situations.

To me it seems the strongest places for R4 that we're currently aware of is the BTL-B Y-Wing and the upcoming V-Wing. BTL-B gets out of it what the 1st edition Y-wing did, the ability to clear stress while doing something other than going directly straight. For V-wings, I think the strength is primarily in turning the 1 banks to white. Being able to go a bit slower can be fairly significant.

Being able to do a  turn maneuver and clear stress is useful (such as for BTL-A4), and being able to turn without gaining stress is also useful (such as resistance transport).  I just don't think most of the ships that can take astros care enough about changing those scenarios.

R4-P by comparison is just more interesting. Situations where you really need dice mod after a k-turn, or where you've been stressed by some other effect the previous turn and you really don't want to be stressed this turn, and you then have to make the choice of whether spending the charge now or later makes more sense.

I really wish FFG had not brought R4 as it was (well, as R2 was) but did something charge based or something with at least a decision point. Maybe not exactly R4-P but something in that direction.

 

All fair points. 

 

I think I agree that ultimately TIE MkII wouldn't really be that problematic, except for potentially one case, but that it's not really an interesting use of the TIE only upgrade space. Not anymore, anyway. Not in the 2e environment of charge based abilities and focus on trade offs. 

I also have the same broad opinion of R4. I don't think it's that bad a card. I think that the astro slot by default limits its usability and exploitability, but that R4-P has shown there was probably a more interesting way of doing essentially the same thing. 

As a final thought on astros in general, I do wish they were seen as more of a necessity on the ships that can take them. It pains me a little seeing X-Wing builds usually leave the astro slot empty. I wish there was a 'default' astro that did something incredibly minimal and trade off driven for zero points, just because the ships are supposed to have astros in them. I think R4 comes closest to being a default for the astro slot, and that there's sort of an argument that the X-Wing dial is 'supposed' to have those blue turns, FFG just portioned that off into an upgrade card to try and encourage you to take astromechs. 

I wish that Jedi hadn't driven the cost of R2 astromech up so much, I miss including them on X-Wings because they're supposed to have R2s in there, and on any ship that doesn't have double reposition and Force points for dice mods the trade off of the Disarm token for 2x shield regen is pretty balanced and represents some difficult decision making. 

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First I want to say that thinking that TIE MkII would break the game while R4 still exist is disingenuous. R4 is a significantly better upgrade as blue 2 turns are much better than blue 3 banks (which is the effect it has on most ships that can take the upgrades).

In 1ed TIE MkII was almost exclusively used on the TIE Defender but the reason is was used on that ship was due to another upgrade that no longer exist and that is Push the limit. Without Push the Limit TIE Defenders have little reason to stress themselves as they have no linked actions and therefore little use for an upgrade that gives them blue banks. Sure it would be nice in my Ciena Ree TIE Defender list but beyond that it would have limited use.

Beyond the Defender there are a handful of cases where it would be useful but nothing game breaking, the Interceptor might want it but giving interceptors a modification they actually want to take is not a negative IMHO and ´TIEs are not droid ships with no blue banks and are not likely to ever be that in the future either so I see very little reason why this would have any big impact on future design space.

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Posted (edited)

 

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

I wish that Jedi hadn't driven the cost of R2 astromech up so much, I miss including them on X-Wings because they're supposed to have R2s in there, and on any ship that doesn't have double reposition and Force points for dice mods the trade off of the Disarm token for 2x shield regen is pretty balanced and represents some difficult decision making. 

This is just a problem with X-wing's design philosophy that problematic combos should come out of the upgrades, rather than the ships, to make the upgrades bad on anything outside of the combo. There is a strange desire to just hardcore prevent any ship from having 'staple' cards that they aren't explicitly designed to use that forces an ever increasing number of upgrades out of the game, while problematic ships keep being problematic, like with how Whisper managed to break by themselves some odd 5 upgrades who all went up in price and didn't do anything to stop the ship from being completely oppressive. I call it the Whisper problem: Generally a ship strong enough to break an upgrade in a game where upgrades are deliberately undertuned by default is just too strong in general. Sometimes they get it right, like with Droid Fighters, but often an upgrade is placed on a sacrificial altar when in reality a ship's mechanics just aren't good or fun.

While force points+regen en-mass was indeed really toxic, that really was more of a sin of them deciding to release a faction that can spam force-point swarms, not the R2s, and honestly I think it is fair to say that, despite the Republic being bad, force is sorta a... failed mechanic, and needs a core systems rework, which would allow republic ships to be a bit more aggressively costed without creating a huge NPE problem where you just can't take out anything because you need to maintain 2,-4 fire arcs on one ship to even start landing damage on it, depending on if your firing with 2 dice or 3 and if your focused or not, and they aren't even an aces list where you outnumber them.

Edited by dezzmont

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7 minutes ago, mcgreag said:

First I want to say that thinking that TIE MkII would break the game while R4 still exist is disingenuous. R4 is a significantly better upgrade as blue 2 turns are much better than blue 3 banks (which is the effect it has on most ships that can take the upgrades).

Breaks is a pretty high bar to clear.

I don't think it'd be a pair of pants bursting at the seam, but I think it'd feel a bit tight.  I'd just prefer to leave it in the past, that's all.

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

My only hesitation around this argument is that it feels a bit in a vacuum. By that I mean that the dial itself is a balancing element. If a future TIE is coming with a dial that needs to be restricted, it's probably because it's offsetting some other strength. The TIE Defender, for example, has one of the worst TIE dials in terms of turns, but that's because it's balancing a very strong straight part of the dial and a very strong statline with a great ship ability. That's also why it lacks the mod slot. In other words, in my mind any TIE with a dial bad enough to really benefit from TIE Mk II is probably balanced in some other way and probably isn't coming with the mod slot anyway. Or it's the TIE Reaper where it's just a genuinely bad dial.

That's not to say I don't agree in general, though. TIE MkII probably just overwrites too much of the dial to make the original design choices matter. 

Fair enough.  Overall, I don't think it'd be *that* bad, but queue my refrain...

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

At first I was going to say I disagree, and that R4 is pretty innocuous all things considered. But it's worth considering. I don't think the simple existence of R4 is the reason no 3 dice astromech has good linked actions - I think that's more likely just a coincidental balancing decision. But it worth thinking about. In the E-Wing's case, I really do think it was just ill thought out design on FFG's part to make the linked action a lock. I think Experimental Scanners is far, far more likely to be the reason the E-Wing doesn't reposition into red focus - it would allow them a reposition and double mods incredibly easily and the stress would always have been worth it regardless of the existence of R4. I think if they had linked focus actions instead, you'd still see most E-Wings taking R3 astromech.

Yeah, it might just be coincidence, and Experimental Scanners is a big part of it.  But like, no other Astromech ship yet has strong linked actions.

As to R4 vs R3 in a world of strong linked actions... I dunno.  I could see R4 becoming a lot more popular, to really leverage that great dial.  Right now, it's about twice as many R3s, per Metawing, and I could see it going to closer to 50/50.  R3 is key right now because the only reasonable way to play an E-Wing is to get a good early nuking in, to really soften up an enemy list.  With better mid-fight mobility and actions, having a really consistent opener with R3 might be less important.

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

But equally, it's probably something that had to be considered. I wouldn't be surprised if the hard 1 turns are red natively because of the existence of R4, for example (though again, part of me thinks that's an area where list building design space has been improved by R4's inclusion - FFG realised they could give the E-Wing hard turns and could even give them white hard 1s, but only if the player was willing to pay a little more in terms of points and miss out on R2 or R3, otherwise they're red).

Also fair.  I still think it's something they really have to build around, however.

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

Here's another question though: would an E-Wing with a linked boost > barrel roll (but not the other way round) actually be that bad even with R4 on the table? Like, sure it would be powerful. But isn't that a bit the point? E-Wings are lacking as is, and the Rebels are missing a super ship with a strong ability. FCS, R4 and Experimental Scanners would make for a potent combo, but it might just be good enough to justify the E-Wing's existence.

Say... even if it's both Boost > Roll and Roll > Boost, that'd be a neat design space for double repo ships.  E-Wings aren't super high initiative, and the most important thing: they don't get a token if they reposition.

A large part of the strength of Autothrusters ships is the token-and-move combo.  Hypothetically, if E-Wings could link their movement actions but not their tokens, that's an interesting trade-off.  Now, maybe FCS and ExpScan cover the offense, but you're giving up any defenses on a pretty expensive ship.

That would have been really cool.

3 hours ago, GuacCousteau said:

Cool Hand, Adrenaline Rush, and Lightning Reflexes all feel like they have a place in 2e, IMO. And obviously Tomax needs something interesting to even start justifying his nerfed, borderline useless ability. 

AR is basically Contraband Cybernetics, roughly.  CH would be neat.  Lighting Reflexes, although I mentioned it... I'm actually a lot more nervous about.  Like, I don't really want someone like Maarek Stele just flipping around at Init 5 after he's seen everyone else's position.  But yeah, there are probably at least a few bad 1e cards that could make the journey to 2e and be OK, maybe with a slight bit more of a drawback.

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How about:

After you reveal a speed 2 (left bank) or (right bank) maneuver, you may gain 1 strain token to perform a speed 3 bank in the same direction as the revealed maneuver, or gain 1 stress to perform a speed 1 bank in the same direction as the revealed maneuver.

This would give all TIEs a Ved Foslo lite ability and while giving an appropriate penalty to TIEs that don't naturally have 1 banks.

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4 minutes ago, svelok said:

you know that "all TIEs" doesn't mean "all generic, bad TIEs" but includes whisper and kylo and vader, right??

Well, not Kylo, as he has no mod slot, but the point still stands. There are far too many good TIE pilots that would benefit from this and become even better. Hard no on this upgrade.

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4 hours ago, theBitterFig said:

Breaks is a pretty high bar to clear.

I don't think it'd be a pair of pants bursting at the seam, but I think it'd feel a bit tight.  I'd just prefer to leave it in the past, that's all.

If this would make the pants seem tight than R4 would have already burst them.

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29 minutes ago, mcgreag said:

If this would make the pants seem tight than R4 would have already burst them.

The list of TIEs is much longer than the list of small ships with an Astromech slot.

TIEs: 19 (currently, with at least 4 more expected for FO; Echelon, Whisper, Dagger, Bomber, maybe variant Whisper)

Small ships with Astro slot: 10 (with one more expected for Resistance; Y-Wing NR2)

For consistency I double-counted the same ship being available to different factions (TIE/lns and Y-Wings)

Also it seems you missed the part where most of us don't really approve of R4 in its current application anyway. We don't want more of the same. Stuff like R4-P is just better design in general than R4. And then let's also consider whether we're seeing more TIEs or small ships with astromechs in the current meta. You get the picture.

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34 minutes ago, mcgreag said:

If this would make the pants seem tight than R4 would have already burst them.

Again, different ships have significantly different designs.  All the astromech ships were designed around R4 being an existing card.  We haven't seen good linked actions on them, and will be unlikely to see those actions.

That's not the case with TIEs, where many more of them have some rather solid linked actions.

It's not the end of the world, I'm not making it out to be.  But still seems like something that... well... it'd be better off not doing.  That's all.

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So the main TIEs that would want Mk2 engine as it was in 1st edition are ones that intentionally stress mainly for repositioning, right? I don't think a bog standard TIE is going to care much. Some people might like it for recovery from red maneuvers on just about any TIE but I don't think we'd see it there as commonly as for enabling linked actions/autothrusters.

TIE Interceptor, TIE Silencer are obvious with autothrusters, but they've both got a decent amount of blue options already, is getting blue 3 banks enough to care? TIE Baron similarly fits here, but only cares much if their chosen token doesn't clear during engagement phase.

There's a few more that might more commonly use their linked actions.
TIE Advanced V1 and X1 seem likely with links that have focus + reposition. For the V1 in particular, that's four extra blues where for most ships it's only two extra. 
TIE Bomber and TIE Punisher are iffy, linked into lock isn't as good generally as focus but maybe could enable some munitions strategies on these platforms. Both bomber and punisher do get four blues out of it instead of two.
TIE Aggressor fits here as well but roll into evade is probably used even less than roll into lock. Does get four blues out of it rather than only two, though. 
TIE Brute's rotate into calculate and roll into calculate (from the config) could see more use, but the config gives a lot of this to the ship anyway, feels too overlapped. Blue 1 banks might be nice to have depending on how these get flown but I doubt most would do this unless there's another config that generally feels better or the configs are too expensive.

The V-Wing is kind of an odd one here, as it could potentially take both the hypothetical TIE Mk2 and R4 astro. How would that interaction even work? Is R4-P combined with TIE mk2 possibly too good? What other astros could bust that?

I could maybe see the TIE Reaper if you want it to coordinate more often.

TIE's that mostly just don't care right now - TIE Defender has no linked or red actions, though getting a few more options after a slow hard turn or 2k might be nice, I mostly think we won't see it here on an already expensive platform. TIE/ln, TIE/fo, scum TIE, rebel TIE, none of these feel like they want this much badly. TIE Striker doesn't get much out of this at all.

So which ship does it outright bust at the seams on?

V1, Aggressor, Bomber, Punisher get the most blues out of it. Does it enable anything particularly interesting there? Is Soontir going 3 bank after a double reposition turn that much better than 2 bank?

Am I missing some interactions with other upgrades that make things worse?

Am I rambling?

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On 8/3/2020 at 5:32 AM, GuacCousteau said:

I'm guessing that no one except Striker and TIE Bomber players want to see Lightweight Frame come back...

Special Forces Tie Fighters would like a word with you. ;)

LWF were stapled on TieSF in 1.0. In 2.0, FFG has NO business bringing it back. I love my TieSF babies. But LWF would destroy the balance FFG has given us with 2.0.

I don't ever want to see XWing get to where 1.0 was before 2.0 came out. It was a horrible place...

Sorry. I just had to be over dramatic. Seriously, the last year or so of 1.0 was bad. I knew my fair share of good XWing players who left the game cuz of the wild shenanigans.

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