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Tincancaptain

Anyone seen the new orbats?

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Highlights:

 

Dread goes down in price but has it's PA neutered while target painter seems to have become ubiquitous without an indicator of wither it is for primary, secondary or energy.

 

Diophantus becomes a beast with the option to have drone launcher 9 for an additional 15 pts.

 

Pericles gets a price hike for a reason I cannot find.

 

Fresnel is the 2.0 whipping boy again both losing firepower and increasing in cost.

 

Hippasus gets much more attractive with a lower price and evasive maneuvers +1.

 

Kepler has damn decent energy broadsides Experienced Engineers and SD2.

 

Plutarch gets a price hike but a boosted DR

 

Euclid's PA also takes a hit.

 

The new flyer makes drones even more scary giving them big fuel tanks and has a new type of weapon the Energy cannon which somehow has a range of only 2 and stratospheric killing rockets with air hunter +2.

 

Icarus gets an all but insignificant increase to her fore guns.

 

Capek's fore guns are now energy and her rockets are hunter +2 but she is now 65 instead of 60

 

Ptolemy is now purely a mine-layer with no bomb value whatsoever.

 

Herodotus is more expensive.

 

Callimachus AlphaΒ are now more 10pts expensive but gain nothing.

 

Janus got a price hike.

 

The Bunker Complex got a price drop.

 

The Forward Landing Field got a price hike.

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  • Prometheus: Sadface.

Diophantus: That's filthy. I can't wait to see the looks on my opponent's faces.

Pericles: Still haven't painted mine, don't much care.

Fresnel: It looks like this is because we have more access to target painters now- it encourages synergy! I should rename my fleet to "Synergistic Management Solutions Resolution Committee"

Hippasus: Already have evasive (1), it's just cheaper now.

Kepler: It's pretty tasty. Looks like it's designed for forward operations.

Plutarch: Shields and +1DR. I'm going to struggle to fit them in, with the price hike, but I think my opponent's faces when they realise they have shields will be worth it.

Euclid: Sadface.

Hyperbius: It looks like fun. Love it/

Icarus: Still slightly sub-par for the price, especially with our huge selection of Naval Mediums.

Capek: Nice.

Ptolemy: Did anyone ever use those bombs, ever? With 14AH High Payload, I never did.

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Indeed tincancaptain. I think the price would be justified with inventive shields. Not sure about it without. That said, I always struggle to use Plutarchs and generally don't field them, so this increase in cost probably won't change that.

Alas for the fallen particle accelerators. Well, it isn't too bad. They still rock at their main job (making swarms of smalls evaporate). I do think the Euclid didn't need the nerf, that is its main gun after all and it is a dread. Ah well.

It seems with this update they are pushing the game of drones. Keplers are every bit as awesome as I knew they would be! Advance deploy drones, good broadsides, strong cc levels. I do like them.

Diophantus with option for carrier 9? YES PLEASE. though that said, carrier 9 was almost the only thing the pericles had over the diophantus, that and being cheap. Well it ain't cheap anymore...

Fresnels... Well they still do their job. A 9 dice attack for one Fresnel rather than 10.

A 15 dice linked shot rather than 16.

They will still do what they did before, and 100 points is... Well I would have paid it before for them, so I guess I can't now say it isn't ok...

Happier note though: capeks! No reason to be any closer than rb4, hit and run to make sure you stay out of range, Hunter aerial 2 means the rockets might do something. Still suffers from inability to multitarget but I really like these changes. It was ok before, it is good now.

The new flyer.

Hmm... Well, advance deployed it might get to use its target painter... It has respectable close range energy firepower... A nice 12 inch radius boost to drone survivability (again pushing game of drones). I am still not sold on it though, it is a support piece compared to the attack focussed heavy bombers for other nations. Like the hippasus is to other battlecruisers. And like the hippasus it has an inconsequential 6 dice attack bolted on for no good reason. The 6 dice torps from a hippasus might harm a small, given that they won't link cc against it. 6 dice of rockets, even with Hunter aerial 2, will do sod all against an enemy with even basic levels of aa.

Overall? Love the Kepler, mourn the prometheus PA, test out the capek and hyperbius, polish the diophantus and stare at the pericles in a confused and wistful manner.

Edit: also zeno has combat patrol...

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I think there is an issue with the Plutarch's new stats- it's only 5 points less than the Plato.

 

 

Those 5 points buy quite a lot- +1 HP, +1AP, +1CR, +1AA, +1IR, Inventive Scientists...

Weapons wise, the Plutarch will generally only manage one 20AD at RB1 attack at best, while the Plato can pull off a similar attack at RB2 (18AD with Sturginium Rounds vs 20AD), and bring broadsides into play. At RB1 its turrets get 21AD with -1 to hit, and it manages 10AD broadsides, and has enough AP to threaten something. And then it also has the option to take E-turrets, which are 11AD Redoubtable at all ranges.

 

The only place I can see the Plutarch being better is when using the Hippasus for the teleporter- but if you're going full teleporter, you might as well take the full TDO, or get some Corvettes for a boarding run.

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You have a very very good point there sebenko. I have recently begun using platos a lot more and they perform very well. Certainly more so than plutarchs could hope to do. It just makes plutarchs even less appealing.

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Fresnel...kind of expected that.

 

Didn't expect the Prometheus or euclid to get its PA demolished. The euclid was kind of built around that gun.

 

Zeno has combat patrol, as well, which is weird. 

 

Daedalus lost an AP hahahaha. Just refit them into epicuruses already. 

 

New Capeks are an option now! Nice!

 

My opinion on the new stuff.

 

The keplers are awesome, great little unit and look fantastic.

 

The Hyberbius looks 95% cool (I'm sure this will change after looking at other nations bombers). Great energy firepower (A bit more than a single fresnel, for a bit more than one, with other bits tacked on)

Those rockets, even at +2 will struggle to do anything. I've always thought that about the Capek rockets, and these are no different. 

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I'm just throwing this out there for discussion but are our large dice pools slowly falling behind other nations? The fresnel taking a hit being the latest update? I'm just starting to struggle how we deal with other nations dreadnaughts and heavy battleships. Small/medium killers we have more than enough options but for consistently causing damage to large ships we seem to have a shortfall. It's not like we hold a great boarding threat really

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Last few games I played with or against CoA, they usely dominated the game. They have so many thricks. One upgrade I would have love to see however is a point decrease for our poor Aristotle. With the Diophantes becoming an ever bigger beast than it already was I don't expect our BB to leave the port much.

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I think we really have a hole in our lineup in the area of larges

 

Prometheus- Dreadnought. Standard, very expensive combat unit.

Diophantus- Carrier, and one of the better ones.

Aristotle- Battleship. Pretty much our only combat unit in the large/massive slot, unless you want to pull a DN.

Pericles- Carrier, again. Cheapest large/massive option we have.

Euclid- Carrier. Also a DN, but it's clearly a carrier+ more than a straight DN.

Epicurus- Carrier.

Daedalus- Barely worth mentioning.  If you want mines, you can take a Ptolemy instead. If you don't want mines, spend 20 points and get an Epicurus.

 

We have four (!) carriers in our large/massive naval/aerial lineup. Four. Our non-carrier large/massives are short on choice. No-one's going to take a Daedalus (Why was it reduced in AP? It's not like we needed discouraging from using it!), the Promethus is at a price point well out of 'just add it in' or 'I need a large choice'. The Aristotle is fairly good, but is now beaten out by the Diophantus, and is still expensive. It feels like we're being punished for not being a bunch of powergaming drone-spammers.

 

Here's an idea- turn the Daedalus into either a dedicated mine control unit, or a surface skimmer- it's never going to step out from the shadow of the Epicurus without some significant movement in purpose. Give it a proper support role, or make it into a 'cheap' combat large for naval games.

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I'm a little salty over the Epicurus losing the extended range drone launch. The model is built around that massive gun on its back, but now that gun has no rules. 

 

It's my favorite model in the entire line, and I'm a bit irritated that Spartan's fantastic ability to express rules on its models has seemingly been thrown out the window.

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Oml, that is an observation that I and another player made today after a game. We are running very short of dice pools that can reliably crit a dread. More and more it seems up to drone bombers to do the heavy lifting.

In my game today I used a selection of updated units and ones I seldom use (as well as one or two staples of my line-up)

My list was:

Aristotle

Diophantus with drone carrier 9

2 Fresnels

3 platos

3 capeks

3 zenos

4 Diogenes

3 plutarch

Not a favoured list for me, I generally like some corvettes for boarding threat and cleomedes for general grunt work, but it is a selection of good tools.

I played against a Danish force with black wolf allies. They closed swiftly and the end of the match saw the diophantus, Aristotle and a Fresnel as prizes. It didn't go well, which had a lot to do with my misuse of a few units and poor deployment.

I won't do a battle report or anything, but here are my thoughts on the updated units I used after trying them out:

Diophantus with drone 9 is, as you would expect, very good. Too good perhaps, it outshines the Aristotle to such a degree that I am struggling to think of why I would have an Aristotle at all. Tbh me and the Aristotle have not been seeing eye to eye recently and I have not used one in any serious way for some time.

Capeks have turned very nasty. Skirting the edge of rb4 and using hit and run meant they hardly took any firpower at all. Turn one, they picked off three fury frigates. Turn 2 they tore apart a fafnir (10 dice rockets hitting on 2s is quite good. Opponent had dropped from obscured and this is a good way to take advantage of someone does that). Turn 3... I may have forgotten to activate them. They were floating around my deployment zone and I am generally not used to keeping units there. These are now my go-to solution for anti-air and general harassment. Sadly at 65 a piece a full squad contests with fresnels for long range sniper role, which fresnels just do better.

Fresnel... Fluffed their first rolls, lost one to prizing before they got a second activation, the remainder worked just like before. Nothing to report.

Plutarch. Wasn't keen before, not keen now. Hp 3 is nice and all, but critical effects are devestating to a small. In this game the first shot of my opponent caused a Plutarch to explode. Second one died in a suicide charge to blow up an enemy mine near some korsors. Third one killed a korsor and a fury. 150 point unit... I just don't think it is worth it. Although I am certain I botched their deployment and use. For 5 points more a Plato is just sooooo much better it is unreal.

Just a further thought. With the pericles now 180 points (battleship money) we really do lack a cheapish large or massive. I think most fleets outside of alliance/mercs have some sort of cheap naval large ship; vengeance, sturmbringer, Boston, Saratoga, regent, dudinka, coroune etc. I think we need something to fill that price slot. Not a carrier, we have loads of those as pointed out above. Maybe a sub, but that is not my preference. Why not give us a picket battleship. Give it solid broadsides and strong gunnery turrets, not the 9/7/5/3 spread that is decidedly lacklustre. Take inspiration from the ragnarok, the Cerberus or the athea. A cheap, disposable, powerful gun platform that can hit like a brick. Make it cost what the old pericles did. Then we will have a solid option for squeezing in a second or third large or massive.

Edit: ok. That sounded a bit whiney. I don't want to be ungrateful, the new units are very nice looking and we do have a fantastic selection of units with a tool for every job. Just... I admit to a little jealousy about the number of dice that was rolled against me.

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The LoIS Hasta heavy bomber also has 5HP. (A balance I am guessing as both also have inventive scientists as well as shield-2.)

 

I think the Hyperbius is a decent heavy bomber...and may be spectacular in a list heavy with SAW and energy weapons. The rockets are even useful. Say for example on turn one I have an enemy small flyer/interceptor squadron which was set up at obscured altitude. I may as well toss 6 rock ts at one of them at +2 to hit in case I get lucky. Same story with the 7 dice energy turret. I might luck out and down two of those pesky things at range band 4 on turn one. (Before I even start doing what I really want to do with this unit.) At least the rockets will still hit on a 4-6, even against a small/obscured enemy aircraft...and sure I need 2 6's to get one with the energy turret, but a pair of 6's on a 7 dice toss is far from impossible.

 

With the support carriers, this and a Hippasus, I can have some fairly interesting swarming, acrobatic SAW groups with big fuel tanks....and I can have them set up in the advanced deployment level.....nice.

 

I do worry that "Game of Drones", may really take over as the dominant CoA strategic doctrine though....and that sounds boring to me save as a "once in a while" list.

 

Doiphantus with carrier 9 upgrade....yeah. Scary good.

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Drones in 2.0 have always baffled me, and the changes to COA now show me something....Spartan dont rate drones. Lets face it, COA have better versions of fighters compared to anyone else. But now they have assault carriers capible of launching 9 drones for 215 points which also have good weapons and a PA...crazy. their new medium also launches 5 each. So with a little tinkering for around 600 points you could concevably field 38 SAS.....so in a somewhat balanced list you might be facing 45 ish.......45 sas that come back. OMG Spartan what are you doing!!! This is broken, but you keep adding more...id love to be a playtester, just to see how this kind of stuff is decided as being fair

 

You know what the biggest problem with drones is? The Node Network - which is centered on the Commodore's ship.

 

Thing is, our Larges/Massives are not overly resilient - they rely heavily on their shields. Yes, you could put your commodore on a Carrier, but that puts him out of range of a lot of squadrons for the morale bonus and Commodore abilities. 

 

And once that commodore's vessel goes down, every drone still up falls out of the sky. Not to mention the problems that come with losing your commodore and a Large/Massive unit. Risk-Reward.

 

--------------------------------

 

Aside from that, did some reworking of my lists today, and I think I've come full circle now. My more recent lists went a bit min-max (somthing I normally decry), with a Diophantus, Fresnels etc. But the more recent ones allow me to take a standard core force (Battleship, 3 Cruisers, 2 frigate squads) and then augment it with a couple of Keplers, some Capeks for air cover, a Hyper to do the coordination thing, and a bouquet of Corvettes for desert. And I like it - it finally feels like I'm going to be playing an actual fleet with augmentations rather than something I've min-maxed for once.

 

Still got 150pts that I've invested in a Daedelus...not so sure about that, but I do need another Large.

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That is why, I suspect, we have so many carrier options in our fleet. Having only one carrier is a bad plan for the drone network and pretty much necessitates having the Commodore on another ship so that the enemy can't down all drones through killing a single vessel.

Also, having only one carrier makes relaunching a sufficient number of drones much more difficult. I think the medium carriers help with all this and might give a bit more freedom to design non-carrier largest like my previous post. He says. In hope.

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I agree with Thyphs, drones are just getting more and more broken, he's absolutely right, its impossible to take down 45 sas in low point games, never mind trying to have fun as you fleet disappears under drones. 

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You know what the biggest problem with drones is? The Node Network - which is centered on the Commodore's ship.

 

And once that commodore's vessel goes down, every drone still up falls out of the sky. Not to mention the problems that come with losing your commodore and a Large/Massive unit. Risk-Reward.

 

I'm afraid that's not how I read it.

 

On page 119 of the Digi Admiral it says that all drones ditch if all drone relays are destroyed, not just the Commodore's. It only mentions that the Commodore's vessel receives the Drone Relay MAR if it doesn't have it already.

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I going to reiterate how ridiculous this new set of rules is- they've buffed our second most terrifying carrier, nerfed the non-carrier abilities of our most terrifying ( so we can focus using it as a carrier), given us a very scary new medium carrier and then nerfed our front line combat units or buffed the choices around them (E.g. Aristotle vs Diophantus).

 

Spartan, I know I make a great many suggestions, and paying attention to my blithering is tiresome, but please listen to this- I do not want to play drone-spam. Please stop trying to force it as the dominant CoA strategy. It's not fun for anyone involved. I'm sure I could win almost any game making optimal use of carriers, while using actual combat units will make it a struggle. I don't want that. I don't want to trade a fun away for a competent fleet.

 

Here's a few ideas on me, to redress this imbalance:

  • Buff the Aristotle. The easiest way I can see would be to drop the cost to it's old 1.0 price of 185 points. Otherwise, make the Target Painter generic and include it for free.
  • Diophantus- Hopefully making the Aristotle a good choice against the Diophantus would be enough, but I think it's still worth a slight points bump. Also the carrier's PA is better than the Battleship's.
  • Plutarch- This is rather a personal gripe, but I'd like to see it brought back to pre-1.5 ORBAT rules. It's too close in cost to the Plato, which is really damn good.
  • Daedalus- Make it a viable choice in the face of the Epicurus. We've been saying this since 1.0. Then for one short moment with the release of the Euclid, it was worth taking, and now it's pointless again. Maybe x3 mines and an MCG, or an MCG and allow a pair Ptolemys to attach to it. Or make a surface skimmer version as a cheap naval large. I'll knock together a stat sheet in a bit.
  • I already mentioned this with the Plutarch, but our units need to be good enough in general to encourage non-drone spam lists, so an all around check of viability vs drone spam may be in order.

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