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Captain_Dan

Limiting bombers?

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Just had a few thoughts yesterday regarding the use of bomber wing. Most of the "space opera" films make extensive use of fighters, as they make the bulk of their SRSs.

 

However in Firestorm, most of the list I have seen with carriers 90% of them deploy bomber tokens, wich seems to be the "mainstay" SRS for Armada. I think those heavy SRS are expenisve and should be deployed in limited quantities. just like dreadnoughts are in the capital ship level

 

So, if you agree with this, as sugggestion,  a (house) rule can be the  followng: in order to field a a bomber wing, you need to have first a fighter wing.

 

I also think bombers cannot be fielded at patrol fleet levels, (because somthing similar happens to the dreadnoughts, and those SRSs are reserved for major engagements)

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Just had a few thoughts yesterday regarding the use of bomber wing. Most of the "space opera" films make extensive use of fighters, as they make the bulk of their SRSs.

 

However in Firestorm, most of the list I have seen with carriers 90% of them deploy bomber tokens, wich seems to be the "mainstay" SRS for Armada. I think those heavy SRS are expenisve and should be deployed in limited quantities. just like dreadnoughts are in the capital ship level

 

So, if you agree with this, as sugggestion,  a (house) rule can be the  followng: in order to field a a bomber wing, you need to have first a fighter wing.

 

So if you bring a single carrier to a fleet you cannot bring bombers?

 

For examples:

 

Aquan BB or Anarchist - if they're you're only SRS carrying units then you cannot bring bombers?

 

It would sure make a lot of Relthoza players happy as they'd own the bombing world. You can have your Nidus carry four fighters to go frigate hunting and then have all your capitals bring bomber wings. Your opponents get squat.  Not that spiders maybe couldn't use a hand...

 

I think the problem (as has been stated numerous times) is that fighters sit in an awkward place. Neither as good as bombers at ship hunting or as good as interceptors at defense they kind of do nothing really well.

 

I think rather than restrict bombers - make fighters a bit better...

 

I've often wondered "what if" fighters could be loaded out with one single "full bombing run" payload such that they could do a bombing level run once and they were reduced down to their normal dice if they would be OP or about right.

 

Zak

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I generally run Fighter wings for offensive SRS duties, Interceptors and Support Shuttles for everything else, and send my carrier off hunting Tier 3s and Tier 2s. I haven't encountered that many Bombers, and in the rare event that I'm running Bombers, it's always been on something like an Aquan Battlestar (which can hunt Tier 1s well enough on it's own, so the Bombers fit the mission profile really). 

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I don't think the mechanic needs any adjustment to be honest, I don't think fighters need adjusting either, yes they aren't as good as bombers or inteceptors at their respective tasks but that's the point they're supposed to be a jack of all trades....well 3 lol.

 

Also if you limit bombers to higher point games or require a tax unit to be included first then it puts those factions whose faction trait/advantage is access to wings at a disadvantage. It changes the whole "balance" and design of certain factions such as Aquans, Ryushi and maybe to some extent Relthoza.

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In regard to usage, I might be biased as I fill as many wing slots with bombers as possible, I play Aquans and the TAC that lets your bombers ignore damage for a turn is awesome! Especially dirty when you run a 3 carrier, 6 bomber token list haha.

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It changes the whole "balance" and design of certain factions such as Aquans, Ryushi and maybe to some extent Relthoza.

Which would be a nifty change to reign in some of the Aquan good-at-everything-ness. Though, to be fair, the ideal solution is to stop treating SRS loadouts universally. Each faction could and probably should have it's own SRS loadout scheme, with some getitng more of certain types, or more expensive other ones. That I think would do away with a lot of the Bomber Grief.

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Which would be a nifty change to reign in some of the Aquan good-at-everything-ness. Though, to be fair, the ideal solution is to stop treating SRS loadouts universally. Each faction could and probably should have it's own SRS loadout scheme, with some getitng more of certain types, or more expensive other ones. That I think would do away with a lot of the Bomber Grief.

 

You mean like faction x gets assault craft and interceptors for 5pts each, others for 10/15pts for example? I could get behind that. The question then would be who got what for what? Would Assault carriers Always get Assault boats for 5 regardless? Support shuttles should be 5 in any case.

 

Another path would be to flat out make fighters/interceptors 5pts, bombers/assault craft 10pts.

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Though, to be fair, the ideal solution is to stop treating SRS loadouts universally. Each faction could and probably should have it's own SRS loadout scheme, with some getitng more of certain types, or more expensive other ones.

 

We also have a sort of precedence in the Cotesia.

 

At the same time, such a rule could also make it harder to experiment with fleet builds if it heavily penalizes non-standard loadouts (or forbids them outright).

 

Another thought: What about additional TACs that specifically benefit fighters instead of SRS in general?

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Or just say that fighters have 'beam' weapons and reroll 1's for attack runs, point defence and dogfights? I think mathematically it is not as good as the extra dice offered by bombers and interceptors but at least it is something. Or give them a 6" PD bubble but no intercept.

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The Fighters do get increased range which I've found very handy, can give you an extra attack run over the course of the game or use that extra range to hide the carrier behind an asteroid field/planet and not worry about collisions destroying the Wing outright as you have the extra move to go around it.

 

Plus while the 18 dice is a great headline a fighter wing can crit most things in the game apart from a Battleship+ with 12 dice.

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Bombers are gonna be bigger & slower than Fighters right? So make them easier to hit- for every two 5's which get rolled by PD that also counts as a destroyed result?

Mind you I haven't had too much difficulty with Bombers in the short time I've been playing. Carriers are deliberately squishy, undergunned and slow (relative to other T1's) because of SRS, and 12" takes a while to get to if you move only 6" or 7" a turn. 

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I think Fighters only need the option to Destroy a wing on a 5+ instead of a 6+. This puts then almost on par with Interceptors when in a dogfight, but unlike Interceptors, are more likely to have a lasting effect.

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I do think fighters need a specialist role, even though space operas use them a lot, they shouldn't be going after capital ships.

Maybe an escort option, that they can give up their own 'attack run' to attach to a bomber stack, any enemy interceptors then have to fight the fighter stack before the bombers.

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I'm actually going to trial fighters for a bit, the next time my Directorate take to the field. i'm actually thinking that 2 x 4 fighter wings could be a nasty surprise for enemy tier 3's and the 2 waves means that the enemy point defence has to split. 

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I too think that Fighters may need a small boost instead of Bombers taking a nerfstick, and I like the 6" PD range but still no intercept option.

I did like the one-time AD boost but when you think about it, they all (F's and B's) RTB after each bombing run, so why wouldn't they rearm when they do?

 

Yeah the space opera's feature fighters moreso than bombers, but that's likely because a dogfight is more fun to watch than a bombing run which then turns around to RTB and since Fighters can do both, it's a chance for the hero to show off his mad skillz in one jack-of-all-trades craft. Fighters are also generally considered a more "glorious" craft to make combat in.

Funfact: the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk (the original stealth bomber) was designated as a Fighter(that's what the F means) because they wanted them to be flown by the best pilots, but they knew these guys would turn up their noses at being forced to fly a lowly Bomber.

 

If your goal is to smash enemy Battleships and such, then Bombers are of course the obvious choice, while Fighters do well on everything else. If the Bombers need escorts, then Fighters or Interceptors would fill that role as additional wings to the Bombers but perhaps the space opera's simply have larger hangar bays to field both, or they split their "wings" into multiple flights instead of grouping them into one big token like we do in FSA.

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My group just generally uses interceptors, then the odd repair shuttle :)

 

I do think fighters could use small buff, as interceptors are just far too handy, having a huge range in which to deal with enemy srs and torpedoes.

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I too think that Fighters may need a small boost instead of Bombers taking a nerfstick, and I like the 6" PD range but still no intercept option.

I did like the one-time AD boost but when you think about it, they all (F's and B's) RTB after each bombing run, so why wouldn't they rearm when they do?

 

Limited stocks of ordnance on board the carrier? Perhaps bombers and fighters do not use the same weapons in this type of attack, and the typical carrier does not carry enough of the heavy fighter-type ordnance for multiple attack runs with that magnitude of firepower.

 

On the rules side, the one-time boost is probably one of the things that would be easiest to do with a new TAC. Something to the effect of select one squadron, all fighter tokens from that squadron may be treated as either bombers or interceptors (choose one) for this turn. Maybe have a command test for it to apply to a second squadron as well. That would both reinforce the role of the fighters as the jacks of all trades and give them the ability to perform just as well as the specialists in that one crucial instance.

(Plus you also avoid the rearming question, as obviously you can rearm the fighters, if you pay to recover the TAC - representing someone investing time and effort to organize a second perfectly planned and executed strike.)

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Limited stocks of ordnance on board the carrier? Perhaps bombers and fighters do not use the same weapons in this type of attack, and the typical carrier does not carry enough of the heavy fighter-type ordnance for multiple attack runs with that magnitude of firepower.

 

On the rules side, the one-time boost is probably one of the things that would be easiest to do with a new TAC. Something to the effect of select one squadron, all fighter tokens from that squadron may be treated as either bombers or interceptors (choose one) for this turn. Maybe have a command test for it to apply to a second squadron as well. That would both reinforce the role of the fighters as the jacks of all trades and give them the ability to perform just as well as the specialists in that one crucial instance.

(Plus you also avoid the rearming question, as obviously you can rearm the fighters, if you pay to recover the TAC - representing someone investing time and effort to organize a second perfectly planned and executed strike.)

This idea sounds cool. It adds to the role of Fighter type SRS, and adds a little bit of realism. I do wonder if it would be worth it to add in something like an activation delay (such as the carrier can't be the first activation) if you decide to switch the load out on the Fighters. Having to make the tactical decision to delay launching your planes to do something else with them, could make for some Battle of Midway like moments. Might be good, might be infuriating. Not sure. 

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For most ships the DR is in the 4-6 range - 12 dice will hurt this almost every time.

 

For most ships CR is 9 or less - 12 dice will crit this almost every time.

 

Bombers 18 dice is overkill in most cases, being especially useful against cruisers where the double crit becomes plausible (18 dice gets about 14 hits) but the presence of shields makes that...debatable and some ships like Directorate Fore arcs, undamaged Dindrenzi or Ba'Kash make that less likely. A single 6 on the PD also puts it at risk. For some fleets (Terrans, Relthoza, Tarakians, etc.) with CR6 Cruisers become better targets. When shooting at Battleships those 18 dice are scary and should crit every time, but if a single wing is lost it's 15 dice, getting about 12 hits...but if shields are present it becomes touch and go as many battleships have CRs of 11 (or reinforced arcs somewhere).

 

Because of the way damage works (thresholds of DR/CR) and the way dice averages (about 75-80% of the exploding dice you roll should hit) Bombers have two main advantages - critting battleships/dreads and a decent chance of double critting cruisers. However a single destroyed wing puts that at risk.

 

Rather than the 18 dice vs 12 dice headline how about looking at 10 dice vs 15 dice as a single 6 on the attack run from defending PD is not some freak occurrence. Does the bomber wing now still perform so well? Fighters certainly start having trouble with Tier 1s if they want crits.

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Hmm. What if Fighters were more elusive to PD then? it would make sense as they are certainly more maneuverable and it would help with the tradeoff of weaker bombs without ever being able to reach the pure destructive potential of a bomber.

 

Maybe... A 6 alone won't destroy a wing but a 6 AND a 5 do what they normally would?

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Ew. That says a ship rolling 1 PD shouldn't bother. Why not give them an intercept move? Gives some options, and allows for more options. Interceptors are then always defensive, while fighters get the versatility of offense or defense.

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 Why not give them an intercept move? Gives some options, and allows for more options. Interceptors are then always defensive, while fighters get the versatility of offense or defense.

 

If that option were on the table I'd want Fighters to be able to intercept Models/Ships like they could back in V1.0

Make your opponent think twice about where he's maneuvering that cruiser when a Fighter token can make a 12 AD intercept action.

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