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FA noob looking for some direction

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I'm looking for some help in figuring out how each of the different factions play.  I haven't really found anything very concrete or all inclusive about each factions characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses.  Any help would be much appreciated whether it's a breakdown by faction or a link pointing me in the right direction.  Sorry if this is somewhere very obvious and I missed it.  

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This is a quote from Alexmann and still one of the best descriptions I have seen.

 

Directorate- Definitely most improved. They've gone from "ignore the guys in suits in the corner" to "Do you want to buy some of our shares? No? Then how about we cram pathogen-enhanced plasma down your fishy craw then?!?!?!" Don't like Plasma, well Mr "I used to be an Aquan before I was genetically fused to these gorilla legs and had blades sown onto where my flippers were" give you a hug then....oh, and don't forget to cycle the airlock on your way out...no, you won't be needing your spacesuit by then, don't worry...


Terran- Man, Terrans whine. "My Sentinel's weaker than your fishstick", "My Apollo's uglier than your toenail" and so on. Yes, I know, we hate them, but in v2.0 they have actually stopped whinging!!! Well, no, they haven't, they're still whining "But my near-indestructible Battleship isn't as fast as yours" blah blah blah..."Our crammed-to-the-hilt-with-guns Heavy Cruiser isn't protected by superdense armour like your Dreadnought" - You know the kind of thing. Never satisfied, despite now having one of the tankiest fleets this side of Pandora. You want sector sauce on your shields with side shields and shield topping, sir? Yes, and a bowl of nukes for everyone too, please.


Aquans - Yes, the blue-skinned fishes are back, now with added mucus and teeth...slipperier than ever before, and with surprising reach, the Aquans have undergone a bit of a paradigm nudge. No more will an opponent be reduced to laughter by the sight of a couple of squadrons of storms fielded in a force, but more like "oh no, not more of those bloody things!". With more all-round offense than a frightened puffer fish, the Aquans are back, and they're P*SSED!


Relthoza - "Spock, you see that? You think you could hide a ship behind that? Aaarrgghhh, flesh eating nanites are eruuggghh....". The Relthoza are the same as before, but turned up to 11.Now you don't see them, now you're dead. Hitting them is arder than trying to pin a politician to a straight answer. Good luck!


Dindrenzi - Our beloved frontiersmen, the honourable Dindrenzi have been not really turned down a notch, more stepped to the side a little. They still have the best long-range guns anywhere, and still turn like a shopping cart with one dicky wheel, but get them right and they still have all the grace and feel of a sledgehammer to the face.


Sorylians - For me, the Sorylians have changed least of all the core races - they play almost exactly the same as before (at least in feel), and it's probably because they were such a good force in v1.5 that they haven't changed that much compared to the other races. What you do have is some new toys, some interesting options and the ability to specialise your force like never before.

 

 

 

I would also direct you to the following threads:

 

Are You New To Firestorm Armada - A List Of Resources

 

and

 

What You Need To Start In Firestorm Armada

 

Be sure to give us a like on Facebook for all your Sci Fi news. Welcome to Firestorm!

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Thanks, that's helpful to a point, but since I never played in earlier editions I think some of that is lost on me.

 

Let me ask this.  Are there the typical faction tropes in Firestorm Armada that I might find in other wargames?  That is to say, is there an "all-around" faction?  Or a heavy-armor faction?  Is there a swarm faction?  Is there a distance attack faction?  A close attack faction?  Is there a fast faction?  Or a slow faction?  Is there a high defense faction?  Etc.

 

The problem we're finding in my group as we spitball whether or not to take the plunge on FA, is that we can all find things to like aesthetically in all the factions to one extent or another, but tracking down how they perform on the table is proving a bit more tricky.  I'm sure that the PDF Fleet Manuals would be a bit more helpful for seeing who is who from a game mechanics standpoint, but as we have a very limited understanding of the rules at this point that's not proving to be an effective path for picking a faction.  

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That is to say, is there an "all-around" faction?  

 

 

Or a heavy-armor faction?

Dindrenzi or Terran (hull versus shields)

 

 Is there a swarm faction?

Relthoza

 

 Is there a distance attack faction?

Dindrenzi

 

 A close attack faction?

Directorate or Terran

 

 Is there a fast faction?

Aquans

 

 Or a slow faction?

Dindrenzi

 

 Is there a high defense faction?

Terran

 

Haven't played them all but it should give you good indication.

 

Edit : Ninja Stingray!

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The problem we're finding in my group as we spitball whether or not to take the plunge on FA, is that we can all find things to like aesthetically in all the factions to one extent or another,

 

Then this should be your primary motivator. The game itself feels very balanced too me, the factions are all a bit different in the "main 6" to translate the above posts, I'll try to help.

 

Terrans: The "tank" faction, good defense, their defense comes from shielding on their ships. Bigger the ship, the more shields they have, many ships have the option to take extra shields. A more close ranged faction firepower wise.

 

Dindrenzi: The long range firepower faction, Solidly built ships that rely on long distance firepower overall. Highest damage in the longest ranges, however that firepower comes at a cost of narrow field of fire, so movement to keep your guns trained on the enemy is important.

 

The above 2 factions I have first hand knowledge of, since I have only recently started the game as well.

The following factions are my take on how the others seem to be given their stats and my understanding of the rules.

 

Aquans: Fast ships with impressive range, the game uses 8" range bands as standard, and the Aquans are gifted with "Beam Weapons" which give you a 10" per range band. So your ships are in range sooner, many other fleets can obtain Beams, however, the Aquans have them as standard firepower. Poor Boarding chances with Aquans as well, as they are on the lowest end of Boarding pools.

 

Relthoza: The "sneaky" faction, Relthoza have cloaking or the ability to share cloaking, or the ability to receive cloaking across all their ships. A few ships also have the ability to "shunt" across the battlefield, moving from 1 place to another instantly. The Relthoza also have the ability to throw out an amazing number of Short range spacecraft "SRS" Wings, Fighters/Bombers/Interceptors/Shuttles/Assault Boats. They can take SRS on all Tiers for fleet building.

 

Directorate and Sorylians, I will defer to others on these, since I have not studied their books at all.

 

Edit: Seems my slow typing has had others post before me, so yeah, take what they have said also. :rolleyes:

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swarm faction :

even if you could bring 5 medium per squadron it's not a swarm, cause you pay the price and have less squadron.

But with the SRS, Relthoza have ships and dozen af little SRS swarming around...

 

close attack

Directorate are great at boarding and all those beam weapons encourage you to go RB1.

 

slow faction

Yes i change the slow faction before to see your post to Dindrenzi.

But dindrenzi also have some fast ships...

But the turn limit make the big one very slow.

 

 

And SRS is for short range spacecraft.

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The Directorate are much more all around then they are close range. Actually with their beam weapons and single target focus theyre focused more to a mid-long range battle early on and only want to close after the enemy has been worn down a bit where their mediums excel and they can get off multiple boarding actions.

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Are there any indications if any of these characteristics will carry over into the forces for each faction into Planetfall?  So if I play Dindrenzi in FA, will they have a similar feel in Planetfall with long range guns that hit hard as well as having high armor but moving slowly?  

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But with the SRS, Relthoza have ships and dozen af little SRS swarming around...

Yeah, but they're not really a "swarm" still, it's one (or two) more tokens flinging about.

 

Anyway, there;s no real swarm faction, most fleets can be built around large amount of mediums or more larges etc. but in general you will rarely find yourself completely out-activated. Expect 1-2 unit difference between each fleet at a given point level usually.

 

SRS is the same as Tiny Flyers, except they're "lassoed" to their carrier in this game. ]

 

Anyway, most of the above give you a good run-down. Terrans are slow, fairly short ranged and rely on shields to crawl to the enemy, with secondary torpedo weapons being the long-ranged punch. Once in Rb1, they pack a hell of a punch, and their guns are alomst universally Redoubtable (if you're familiar with DW as you said).

 

Aquans are mid-ranged fleet, fast, agile, moderately well armored and with plenty of SRS support. They like circling enemies. They so do suck at boarding though.

 

Sorylians- They have okay large ships, but they shine with their mediums and smalls. General characteristics: good broadsides, decent armor and token shield values, can be made to be good at boarding, their cruisers and frigates come in large squadrons. Not much in the way of SRS support.

 

Dindrenzi: Step 1) make a giant gun. Step 2) Attach engines and bridge to it. Step 3)....? Step 4) Profit!

Simply put, they're literally that, guns that happen to be ships. Tough armor but no active defenses, and once you drop their HP below 1/2 value, their armor also dissolves to sub-par level. Long ranged, but more importantly, almost universally fore-fixed. The key is to outflanking their ships so they cant aim at you. Very much a sledgehammer fleet, but one that needs to pay constant heed to where the enemy is going.

 

Directorate: The irritating fleet that you never know what will do. They have usually only a single turret system on each ship, but of decent value. On mediums and smalls, you can get to RB1 easily withiout losing much firepower, but they're very much medium-range fleet too. They have a selection of specialized ships that dont harm the enemy directly, but instead shut off weapons, drives and so on. Their basic guns also tend to do crew damage as well as basic hull, so you want to mix the specialists, the guns and the crew harming ability to maximize efficiency of your ships. They also have a few very boarding-skilled ships to later walk in and take the crew-stripped enemy.

 

Relthoza- the gamblers' choice. Not terribly fast, not terribly armored at all, but with abilities to negate enemy fire right until you want to fire. Very meh forward guns, good broadsides, good boarding in most units. close-in fleet with SRS support almost as good as the aquans. You do want to be careful with them, as timing is everything when it comes to using cloaks.

 

 

So if I play Dindrenzi in FA, will they have a similar feel in Planetfall with long range guns that hit hard as well as having high armor but moving slowly?

Not entirely. Dindrenzi are in planetfall described much more like your typical blitzkrieg faction than anything else.

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Not entirely. Dindrenzi are in planetfall described much more like your typical blitzkrieg faction than anything else.

 

True, but in fairness data on Planetfall is VERY limited so far.  I don't think it's possible to make much more than a guess at this point about how the Planetfall factions will play.

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Hey, thanks a ton everyone.  This has really helped out getting me down to two factions that I really am interested in.  

 

I do have one more question, however.  In addition to the TAC cards that come with the Patrol Fleets, do I still need the 54 card Game Card Deck from the previous edition of the game or not?  

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I do have one more question, however.  In addition to the TAC cards that come with the Patrol Fleets, do I still need the 54 card Game Card Deck from the previous edition of the game or not?  

If you find some of the old 52 card deck of STAR cards on sale, get one or two.  Even though they aren't official in this edition now, they can be a great way to add some fun chaos to a game session.  Ignore the wussy nay-sayers who can't handle a little random chance in their games.

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Here's my general overview of the fleets after a few games of version 2.0;

 

Terrans

A very flexible force, Terrans mix long range torpedos with savage, multi-arc short range primary weapons. They can be a very tanky force, but their defences are dice based so they can be very swingy. A lot of their tankiness comes from the fact that their guns do not degrade as quickly as everyone else – they keep the ships running with twigs and elastic bands, and they keep on swinging until they blow up. Their disadvantages are lack of speed and paper thin hulls behind those shields.

 

Dindrenzi

Subtle as a brick, the dindrenzi have two big advantages – very tough hulls and high power, long range weapons. In other words, the sniper fleet. They have generally poor manoeuvrability (but solid speed), and their best weapons fire in very narrow arcs. They're vulnerable to shunting/outflanking units, so actually require a bit of thought to play these days.

 

Sorylians

Subtle as a different coloured brick. The sorylians are fast, with devastating multi-arc short range firepower and some of the nastiest boarding in the game. A fairly simple fleet to play, they don't really have any disadvantages, beyond a complete lack of fancy tech and some mediocre defenses.

 

Aquans

Fast and incredibly manoeuvrable, the aquans rely on skirting the mid-range with multi-arc beams. They're a tricksy force too, with the most access to small attack craft on a variety of platforms and fleet wide access to mines. The fleet can be very durable too, with solid defenses, shields and access to difficult target (making them harder to hit). Their only real disadvantage is their pitiful boarding. In my opinion the most powerful fleet, but I'm sure there will be some disagreement.

 

Relthoza

The patient hunter, the relthoza are probably the hardest army to get the hang of. They're very slow, short ranged and have hulls made of paper and hope. However, they also have fleet wide access to cloaks and stealth systems, which make them exceedingly hard to damage while cloaks are active. You need to drop cloaks to fire at full effectiveness, so managing activations is crucial. They also have some very nice long range torpedos, and are the only core race with access to shunting (essentially battlefield teleportation – risky but incredibly powerful). The relthoza also have excellent access to small attack craft, and some solid boarding.

 

Directorate

Along with the relthoza, the directorate are a difficult force to play. They have access to a large variety of tech, including cloaking and shields, and have powerful mid range beam turrets. This is both their biggest advantage and disadvantage – you can throw out very nasty firepower in any direction you like – but only one direction at a time, meaning that your firepower can feel powerful but limited. They're also the kings of disruption, with access to cyberware – allowing you to cripple enemy ships by turning off defensive systems, blowing out the engines or venting crew into space. This last one can be very handy, as the directorate have probably the most lethal boarding out of the core fleets.

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