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schoon

T1, T2, T3, and Meta

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I'm about 3/4ths of the way through my read of the rulebook, and have yet to play a game (especially as my fleets are still on the way in the post), so hopefully this is not a silly question.

 

In many space combat games, larger ships have the advantage. At first glance, this appears to be the tendency in FSA as well.

 

The actual question: do T1-heavy lists tend to do better, or is the game well balanced between ship classes?

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For me, T3 units are essential as fast response and harassment units. Even at Patrol Fleet level, I take as many frigates as possible (Armsmen are dangerous with torpedoes and beams, Wayfarers are useful for annoying destroyers to death, Missionaries are cheap Shunt Bombs even in a Patrol Fleet. For the Dindrenzi, Thraex are good at killing off T3 and T2 ships). Others see T3 as a tax that you have to pay in order to get bigger ships, and so will bring two half squadrons of frigates and use Regroup to put the two units together. Some see cost savings and efficiency in that, I see min-max tourney cheese. Your mileage may vary. 

 

I've found T2 units to be good all round units that will inevitably form a line of battle somewhere. Some are more specialised than others, Hauberk Gunship-Cruisers and the new Escort Carriers come to mind, and they have specific roles to fill in the fleet to help the fleet as a whole function better. 

 

T1s are where you sit your admiral (preferably on a dreadnought or battleship, though a carrier will make do in a Patrol Fleet). They are your boomsticks and heavy support assets. They also eat a lot of points up, so going to town on T1s may mean that T2s and T3s may not have enough ships to do anything useful. 

 

FSA is combined arms in space; a fleet of dreadnoughts might look mighty powerful, but they'll get picked apart by a fleet which has a little of everything. Always take a balance of T3s, T2s and T1s that will support each other and work together like a well oiled machine. 

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Battle log is something you have to consider as well. Your 3 battleships may beat up my fleet of cheap frigates pretty bad but I only have to take down a couple big targets to gain a huge swing in BL and win the match.

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you also need different ships for different tasks,

- T1 are usually not the best shunt bombs because of high costs (you don't want so much points of the table)

- Babysitting Waypoints is also not a glorious job for a Battleship

- Escalating Engagement force all your T1 to start in reserve

- fighting other smalls with difficult target is better done by other smalls (if you don't have scatter)

 

also if you go very heavy into T1 you will have less activation's then your opponent and you will get overrun

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T3's have more utility than in other games, but T1's are still, in most cases, the better choice at brawling. It's natural and inevitable, unless every faction has one-shot kill weapons that can make frigates serious threat.

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I think the best answer is… Depends on the faction. Aquans have a lot of strengths and no real weaknesses, so their Tier 1 choices are phenomenal. Their fleets tend to be top-heavy (see Adepticon winners). Sorylians have great Frigates and Cruisers, but their T1s don't do much to support the fleet, so tend to be bottom heavy.

As a Dindrenzi player, my T3 choices are solid, and having a lot of activations allows me to capitalize on the +3 Fleet Tactics Bonus, so I tend to max out my T3 slots. This usually allows me to control the game tempo, which is very important in a game where positioning is the most important thing.

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Those are very heartening answers.

 

I was hoping that FSA would be a bit more "combined arms" than other games I've played in the past, and it sounds like that is the case.

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Also tier 1's may hit hard but their damage output normally degrades quickly with damage.

I go tier 1 heavy with Directorate. I got tier 2 heavy with my Sorylian and Ba'Kash. And tier 3 heavy with Terrans (especially with light cruisers being tier 3)

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My biggest gripe with small is how quickly a nuke wielding opponent can wipe away all your T3 ships. I like the small ships. But if I am playing terrans I usually feel it necessary to just leave them at home, or spend the whole game trying to mess around with the 4.1 inch distances while trying to keep the firing options optimal.

I am a top heavy fan with most of my fleets. But it's a risk and you can quickly find a big hole in your fleet.

With regards shunting T1's, I love it with my terrans. My dreadnaught virtually always shunts in :)

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T1's aren't even the big damage throwers, that's T2s for the most part. T1s tend to shine in durability (BB, DN) but some do trade that for high damage output or utility (BC, CV).

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It depends on your fleet. In another thread here someone explains it far more in-depth and eloquently than I, but the gist is that tier 1 ships aren't an "I win" button. Some fleets do lean more heavily on them, however...

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