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What beats a Nantex swarm? (tournament analysis)

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23 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

I doubt this will happen, but I would be ecstatic if it did. They have only done emergency points adjustments once.

I also have my doubts, but a 8 points reduction (july 2020) haven't happened a lot. Generally their first evaluation is not that bad.

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Only good news is that FFG has stated that point changes are now targeted for May and November starting with November 2020 and May 2021.  We won't have to wait until January anyway.

Link

image.png.c37d86833431d24c66cdc246f824755c.png

 

Edit: Hoping the Covids doesn't torpedo that plan

Edit2: I also sorta hope they undercost HMP Gunship at least a bit.  That ship looks like loads of fun and I would love it if it were a bit too good for a month or so.  Don't know what my list will be but I know it's gonna be called "The HMPty Dance."

Edited by gamblertuba

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53 minutes ago, Cuz05 said:

Since that point is more an illustration of how they may warp the meta in a totally not good way, rather than "you need a better list". 

Agreed. I went 6-0 during Swiss at Corellia with this list, so anyone that wants to say the list is bad would be questionable. And now that list is nonviable because of mosquito season. I4 and below are boned.

10 minutes ago, Chumbalaya said:

So where did you deploy @5050Saint?

Nom Lumb a little east of center with the port-side pointing toward the opponent. Both IGs in the east corner.

9 minutes ago, svelok said:

wait, was it all headsim until now?

Headsim, watching vids, watching local practice sessions against it, reading batreps. I don't need to eat rotten food to know it's spoiled. But then I did. No surprise, it's rotten.

10 minutes ago, gamblertuba said:

Only good news is that FFG has stated that point changes are now targeted for May and November starting with November 2020 and May 2021.  We won't have to wait until January anyway.

Link

image.png.c37d86833431d24c66cdc246f824755c.png

Dear Lord, there is hope. May November was likely to line things up with post-Worlds, back when we thought Worlds 2020 was a thing.

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49 minutes ago, Chumbalaya said:

Do you think that after your first game against it there's nothing you would do differently?

Good question. I am uncertain at this point. I had a range 3 engage with IG yellow and Nantex Red that I might have been able to turn to both IGs on him. I got about 2-3 block per turn, which is good for denying mods which feels good, but then they bounce off and get an uncontested shot which does not feel good. I'm gonna put more reps in, and see what I can divine.

I was able to take out 3 and half of 2 before buring down, but that felt like luck, as IG Yellow stayed on 1 health for 3 turns. The Teal Nantex taking double waepons failure pretty much meant he was out of the game. So much luck on my side, and I still felt helpless. I don't know what the counterplay is here that isn't purely in the list-building phase. If I was moving second things might be a little better, but I'd need to shave 9 points off of my list to outbid it which would likely cripple it to other lists.

It's a shame. I really liked this list.

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4 hours ago, 5050Saint said:

TejmRV1.jpg

To the haters who say "Don't joust Nantex" this is me vs 6 last night. Despite being spread out across the entire board edge, this is round 3. I have hash marks at about where each turn was for them. I think I mixed Teal and Greens starting points, but the result was still the same. The only way for my to not joust would have been to spread my formation and get picked apart separately, weakening myself further. Nantex dictate the engagement against anything moving before them.

Having officially flown against it, now I can definitively say this list is gross. Not being able to block them is much more of a deal than I thought. Several turns I would have been taking about two less shots per turn due to blocking them, but instead they just bounce off. Being able have 100% time on target is absurdly good. They always had shots. Blocking them is still good as they lose their green token, but Crack Shots help push damage through when they don't have it.

Despite getting decent engagements and strong dice luck and crit luck (double weapons failure on teal), I felt helpless. I think I'm going to have to go to high initiative and force to beat this.

I doubt this will happen, but I would be ecstatic if it did. They have only done emergency points adjustments once.

Your ships are all in one place, and so there's only one place for the Nantex to need to sorry about.  Maybe it didn't start this way, but why is it this way now?

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1 hour ago, Biophysical said:

Your ships are all in one place, and so there's only one place for the Nantex to need to sorry about.  Maybe it didn't start this way, but why is it this way now?

Other general questions ( hindsight is 20/20 etc. )  

  • Who was moving first? 
  • Why are there no obstacles in the middle of the board? Was this intentional? Kills options to break up the Nantex approach. 
  • Why are 1 or 2 ships not positioned to punish a called flank? (i.e. Send one Aggressor to trade ideally initial from R3, but make sure his sacrifice is worth it ) 
  • Where did the Iggies and Nom Deploy? 
  • Are there at least 2-3 alternative engages based on just the screenshots rock deployment alone? Best to know the deployment area. 
  • What range were the first round of shots fired? What was in Arc for both Players? 
  • Was there opportunity to have a partial engage with part of the Nantex List as an initial trade?
  • How would separating off at least 1 iggy facilitate that? Is it possible to create two flanks force a choice and punish that choice? 
Edited by Boom Owl

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9 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:

Why are 1 or 2 ships not positioned to punish a called flank? (i.e. Send one Aggressor to trade ideally initial from R3, but make sure his sacrifice is worth it ) 

Man, I've had a couple games against the bugs, and they can switch target priority so fast, it makes having an effective flank tough. Usually, with a good flank, you know that at best, your opponent could turn half their squad towards your flanker, at the cost of terrible positioning against the rest of your list. But those bugs can go from all arcs on your main regiment to all arcs with focus on your flanker to right back at your mains again without a single stress between them. Bottom line, I'm not sure flanking does much against them.

 

All that said, I don't have the experience of flying the bug squad. In your experience, have flankers been a serious concern for your nantex?

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10 minutes ago, hargleblarg said:

Man, I've had a couple games against the bugs, and they can switch target priority so fast, it makes having an effective flank tough. Usually, with a good flank, you know that at best, your opponent could turn half their squad towards your flanker, at the cost of terrible positioning against the rest of your list. But those bugs can go from all arcs on your main regiment to all arcs with focus on your flanker to right back at your mains again without a single stress between them. Bottom line, I'm not sure flanking does much against them.

 

All that said, I don't have the experience of flying the bug squad. In your experience, have flankers been a serious concern for your nantex?

Bullseyes are how they win. Sure, the time on target is great, but 6 2 die mobile arcs with very little else to buff them isn't exactly lighting the world on fire. You can't just flank like "hehe wedge go left rock squad go right rock" because the bugs will just turn onto wedge and get bullseyes on him as you said above. However, if you play it just right, and put the flanker(s, you need some real threat) in a position where they can do a lot of damage without getting bullseyed, then you stand a chance of actually doing more than them on a first engagement (but be prepared to trade). The answer that all of this seems to circle around is that you can beat the list: you just need perfect rock placement, positioning, and a darn good flank to actually kill some bugs before they run away with the lead. It's just going to be extremely hard to do so.

That being said, take all of this with several grains of salt: I haven't played against them, and I haven't played X-Wing much at all recently, so this is entirely secondhand interpretation. You only get the most armchair of analysts here at Npmartian University.

Edited by Npmartian

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1 hour ago, Biophysical said:

Your ships are all in one place, and so there's only one place for the Nantex to need to sorry about.  Maybe it didn't start this way, but why is it this way now?

Spreading my list means spreading my arcs. I need to be able to kill a Nantex at some point, not just to a damage or 3 then let it skitter off to parts unknown. that means I need to get an engagement where at least two arcs are on one ship. With all 6 moving after my list, the only way I can guarantee that is to keep them close together.

Perhaps I can use Nom Lumb or an IG as bait by themself in future matches, but that feels like I'm cutting up the steak for my opponent instead of making them swallow it whole. When I cannot say where they are going to be, I cannot cast a net. The difference  between a 1 hard + reposition and a 5 straight + reposition is huge. If I had at least 1 ship moving afterwards, I could perhaps dangle or punish with it. 

@Biophysicalhave you flown a pure lower initiative list against it, yet? I'd appreciate your strategic input.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Who was moving first?

Answered above, but IGs.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Why are there no obstacles in the middle of the board? Was this intentional? Kills options to break up the Nantex approach.

Because I'm not certain where to place objects against Nantex. given the approach of the Nantex, how could it have been broken up?

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Why are 1 or 2 ships not positioned to punish a called flank? (i.e. Send one Aggressor to trade ideally initial from R3, but make sure his sacrifice is worth it )

As said above, IG Yellow engaged Nantex Red at range 3 for first engagement.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Where did the Iggies and Nom Deploy?

As said above, Nom center, IGs right. Nantex just follow their line back.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Are there at least 2-3 alternative engages based on just the screenshots questionable rock deployment alone? Best to know the deployment area. 

Nom could have pulled through the two debris cloud on the right, but that leaves him in the less that optimal position of either facing some Nantex alone turn 2 and left turns being un-optimal future maneuvers.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • What range where the first round of shots fired? What was in Arc for both Players? 

Again, covered above. On turn 2, Range 3 between IG Yellow and Nantex Red. That was all.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Was there opportunity to have a partial engage with part of the Nantex List as an initial trade?

Hard to manufacture going second, in my opinion. If I go fast I expose myself for the shot. If I go slow, the Nantex can either embrace that, or reposition to get an engagement.

2 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:
  • Why did all the Iggys engage down a board edge with Nom? 

It protects a flank. It also allows me to throw out blocks. As I said to Bio, if they don't engage together, I'm just cutting up the meal for my opponent instead of forcing them eat the whole steak in one bite.

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17 minutes ago, hargleblarg said:

Man, I've had a couple games against the bugs, and they can switch target priority so fast, it makes having an effective flank tough. Usually, with a good flank, you know that at best, your opponent could turn half their squad towards your flanker, at the cost of terrible positioning against the rest of your list. But those bugs can go from all arcs on your main regiment to all arcs with focus on your flanker to right back at your mains again without a single stress between them. Bottom line, I'm not sure flanking does much against them.

So part of the value of a flanker is that even if they call the flank, it turns the rest of your list into the "new" flank. Issue is it requires not overextending with parts of your list to early and not being to cagey about the rest of the elements of your list participating ( or being pointed at ).  Obstacles are a huge factor here in how easily the Nantex list can alternate between targets for the first two engagements. Range of the initial engage is also massively important. Knowing which of your ships can manage 5 incoming 2-3 dice shots without dieing first engage is also important (Without thinking to hard about it I am pretty sure an iggy can manage 3 shots from the nantex in bullseye and 3 from out of bullseye). Less is more here obviously but not always possible as board states develop. Flanks are about how you trade and the board state that earns you, not not trading at all. Anything you can do to keep their initial target from burning down on the first round of shots buys your flanking elements (or which ever ships they did not priortize) time to collapse and limits their options to start focus fire on the rest of your list.  

Forcing them to choose between things to target doesnt and shouldnt mean you "win" it just helps.  

Edited by Boom Owl

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4 minutes ago, Npmartian said:

Bullseyes are how they win. Sure, the time on target is great, but 6 2 die mobile arcs with very little else to buff them isn't exactly lighting the world on fire.

Don't underestimate 6 two die attacks. they are what did me in not the bullseyes. Bumping then rolling out of arc gives you a 3 die range 1.

3 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:

Obstacles are a huge factor here in how easily the Nantex list can alternate between targets for the first two engagements.

I'm not certain how true this is. I saw a match vs Republic aces where a Nantex 5 forward Yolo'd over a rock then tractored forward to put a block in on an ace. They care about obstacles, but not a lot less than other ships.

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13 minutes ago, Npmartian said:

Bullseyes are how they win.

The bullseyes are how they win more. 6 modded 2-dice attacks (and it's very likely that several will be r1 for an extra red) can burn down most ships in 1-3 turns. Obviously, you can dodge several, maybe all turret arcs, but that usually comes at the cost of not getting any shots yourself. The bullseyes, meanwhile, punish you for turning in to try to push damage into the squad.

 

8 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:

Forcing them to choose between things to target doesnt and shouldnt mean you "win" it just helps.  

Agreed, but it's a big commit and risk whereas the payoff feels minimal. Right now, though, it does seem necessary to get closer to a 50% win rate against the bugs.

Edited by hargleblarg

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Based on the picture and what you've said it looks like they just collapsed in on you as you channeled yourself into the right lane with obstacles in your way to prevent any other approach.  Normally I think you'd want the obstacles clogging up the middle to limit their ability to converge and punish the lack of bank boosting.  Even given the same obstacle layout, you were probably better served starting left in with the rock closer to you and a wider area to give you multiple avenues of approach.  Something like IG and Nom in the corner with another IG on the left center.  Nom gets in the way as Noms do, but you IGs are more importantly in different spots, at different angles, with a wider net arc.  Then they can jump around, boost/flip, whatever to keep shots while Nom gums up the works.

The bugs just play a bit differently so you'll have to adjust your strategy. 

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14 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:

So part of the value of a flanker is that even if they call the flank, it turns the rest of your list into the "new" flank. Issue is it requires not overextending with parts of your list to early and not being to cagey about the rest of the elements of your list participating ( or being pointed at ).  Obstacles are a huge factor here in how easily the Nantex list can alternate between targets for the first two engagements. Range of the initial engage is also massively important. Knowing which of your ships can manage 5 incoming 2-3 dice shots without dieing first engage is also important (Without thinking to hard about it I am pretty sure an iggy can manage 3 shots from the nantex in bullseye and 3 from out of bullseye). Less is more here obviously but not always possible as board states develop. Flanks are about how you trade and the board state that earns you, not not trading at all. Anything you can do to keep their initial target from burning down on the first round of shots buys your flanking elements (or which ever ships they did not priortize) time to collapse and limits their options to start focus fire on the rest of your list.  

Forcing them to choose between things to target doesnt and shouldnt mean you "win" it just helps.  

All spot on, ofc. 

_Headsim_ 

Seems to me that the speed and ease with which Nantex can switch targets, after at least halving a primary target, might be an issue with a good flanking.

I mean, flanking perfectly is generally a sweet deal, if your list suits it, it should do you well. But against something that can switch and cover better than you can, you almost have to ask the other player to opt into that at obstacle placement and deployment.

If something can be very heavily swayed at that point it removes that beautiful player agency we like, where the back and forth of flowering options takes place and an actual game breaks out :D

 

This has turned into a very good conversation, so please don't take any of this as naysaying, it's purely theoretical, I can't say it applies.

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38 minutes ago, 5050Saint said:

Spreading my list means spreading my arcs. I need to be able to kill a Nantex at some point, not just to a damage or 3 then let it skitter off to parts unknown. that means I need to get an engagement where at least two arcs are on one ship. With all 6 moving after my list, the only way I can guarantee that is to keep them close together.

@Biophysicalhave you flown a pure lower initiative list against it, yet? I'd appreciate your strategic input.

I've only played Nantex with lower initiative on Hyperspace, so not quite the same. 

As per arc spreading you are wrong.  Spreading ships does not mean spreading arcs.  You can have ships in different places with arcs converged on a a single area.  With 6 potential targets, you're not worried about having an ace dodge out of all 3 arcs.  

I'm not saying that this would solve your problem. Might just be a bad matchup, but the picture you showed seems suboptimal for how I would attack the Nantex while moving first.  

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2 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

Why do Nantex care about non-asteroid obstacles?

Honestly, I think they care about debris more since they deny both the action and the reposition. Rocks and Clouds, they lose an action, but can still maintain mobility. Obviously they'd rather hit nothing, but obstacles matter less to them than other ships, aside from struts.

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Sounds to me like we're all thinking of different, rather specific situations.

The one I had in mind is 1 Nantex passing an obstacle to reposition+ block, or to reposition after a bump. In those cases, they only care about asteroids and the others don't really help to split them up.

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6 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

Sounds to me like we're all thinking of different, rather specific situations.

The one I had in mind is 1 Nantex passing an obstacle to reposition+ block, or to reposition after a bump. In those cases, they only care about asteroids and the others don't really help to split them up.

For that reason, I'd certainly be looking at bringing rocks. It would be useful, with lower Init, to block both mods and repos on the ship/s you're having to sacrifice half your list to get.

Forcing them to take a stress but still allowing them to shoot, with debris, is where their I4 comes in and doesn't help with quick removal.

Clouds are for aces or stuff that just says meh, here I come. So pick your poison :D

Plenty of stuff likes all rocks though...

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