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Taming the Hellcat...or not.
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Davec_24
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Joined: 16 Jul 2008
Posts: 596
Location: England

PostPosted: Fri Dec 19, 2008 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan Ibekwe wrote:
16 for speed...


Also the Lyran started at speed 24, forgot to mention that!

I think also Kang made a minor mistake in closing to range 10-12 in the first place, rather than firing at 14-15 and keeping just that few hexes extra room to Saber Dance me in the next turn. I'm not sure how much difference this would have made, since I started to use much more aggressive tactics in the next turn.

I went at speed 24 in the second turn partly in order to make sure of avoiding ESG rams (by keeping at least equal initiative and also having enough speed to be able to run away if needs be), which would have been nasty, and also of course to force the Lyran into either closing me or spending power to stay running. Not doing this would likely have cost me the fight, since Kang's opening salvo was exceedingly lucky (all 4 disruptors hit, and all 5 bearing Ph-1s also hit) and scored pretty hefty damage to the forward shield.

Staying outside of the Lyran disruptor arc as much as possible - especially for that first close-in exhange - was entirely deliberate; I was trying to play the odd weapon arcs of the Dragoon to my advantage, which seems to have worked. I did make one goof simply by not paying enough attention, and took a Ph-1 and 2 Ph-3s on my very weak front shield. Shouldn't have happened, but everyone makes mistakes sooner or later, and this one cost me a couple of phasers and a Hellbore!

As Kang said, the Hellbores are not amazing for the first shot or two, but once the enemy begins to take shield damage they become very effective by nature of the way they apply damage to the weakest shield - the trick as the Hydran is to survive long enough to get to this stage, preferably at close or medium range when fighting this duel.
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Dan Ibekwe
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Joined: 08 Mar 2007
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Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2009 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I revisited this today.

So, under the FC rules, one hellbore is essentially nerfed by an opposing ESG.

So...why bother arming them?

Setup...

Hydran DG Temerity with three Stingers aboard in the near right corner of the map, Lyran BCH Antagonist in the far left corner. Antagonist is flown by a robot (rev. 5 rules).

Turn 1 - Temerity plots speed 8 and does not arm her hellbores, Antagonist speed 16 and fills her ESGs. Temerity runs up the right hand side of the map, turning to port on about impulse 5. She starts EM on impulse 2.
Antagonist heads toward Temerity, slipping gradually to port. They end at range 28, so there is no shooting.

Turn 2 - Temerity plots speed 24, staying on EM over the turn break. Antagonist again plots 16.
Temerity starts to spend power to accellerate from impulse 3 on, and tries to slip around Antagonists' flank. The battlecruiser is forced to turn twice to keep Temerity in her forward arc, and fires on impulse 5 at range 8.
Four O/L disruptors and nine Ph-1s inflict...2! points of shield damage, contemptuously bounced away by the cruiser's batteries (actually a mistake, I could have used that power later).
Impulse 6, Temerity drops erratics and turns toward the BCH. This is where the robot gets in touch with its inner idiot; since the BCH isn't pointed toward the Dragoon's centreline, she bimbles blissfully forward with only the odd sideslip away from the threat.
Temerity ends impulse 6 3 hexes off Antagonists' shield 2 and fires every bearing phaser; 26 points after some battery re-inforcement.

Temerity launches her Stingers.

In short...

On impulse 8 the Stingers fire at the damaged shield from range 2, doing 30+ internals, taking out three disruptors, two ESGs, six phasers, five points of power and a bunch of other stuff. Robot concedes.

Okay, okay, I realise that if the BCH had had a real, living, breathing feline at the helm it would have been different, and I wouldn't have launched the Stingers when I did. Neverthless, Temerity ended behind the BCH, in a good position to start working on those rear shields with her phasers, and with the fighters available as a deterrent to a HET & overrun. If th BCH had plotted speed 24, her turn mode would have been worse, and getting behind her potentially easier.

At least, a better outcome than last time Very Happy

Edit - come to think of it, the Hydrans could have had a similar result in this game flying a Lancer. Which rather underlines the uselessness of the hellbore in FC.
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junior
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Joined: 08 May 2007
Posts: 803

PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 5:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dan Ibekwe wrote:
I revisited this today.

So, under the FC rules, one hellbore is essentially nerfed by an opposing ESG.

So...why bother arming them?


Because if you get close enough you can do more damage with a Hellbore than an ESG can protect against? The ESG tops out at 20 points. Hellbores can do more than that if overloaded. And it can't miss if the ESGs are used defensively.
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mjwest
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
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Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 6:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why use hellbores against ESGs?
- You force the Lyran to decide whether to give you the auto-hit or not. Don't forget me-too. If you fire one hellbore, and he raises an ESG, you can then add in the rest of your hellbores, which you know will automatically hit.

- You force the Lyran to use the power for the ESGs. If you keep him cycling the power, he will slow down a lot, which can only help your fighters.

- There is no guaranteed he will even use them that way. If you have some fighters closing with him, then you can make him choose between using the ESGs against your hellbores or against your fighters. Being able to close just that one extra hex can make a BIG difference with those fighter fusions.

So, it seems to me that they work just fine. Also, don't forget you chose the worst-case scenario by using the Hellcat. Fight a CA and (DD or FF) and it will work quite differently.
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Dan Ibekwe
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Joined: 08 Mar 2007
Posts: 452
Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
You force the Lyran to decide whether to give you the auto-hit or not. Don't forget me-too. If you fire one hellbore, and he raises an ESG, you can then add in the rest of your hellbores, which you know will automatically hit.


Perhaps I've misunderstood how this works. Rule 5N (don't have time to quote the whole thing, about to go out playing Field of Glory) talks about a hellbore shot at an 'ESG field' producing an auto hit. I'd interpreted that as those hellbores the Lyran chooses to use his ESGs against hit (the intercepting 'ESG field') automatically, any he didn't declare ESG use against dice to hit normally.

Say in a fleet action, two Dragoons centreline a Lyran CW at range 15 and fire all eight hellbores. The way I've been playing it, the Lyran can intercept the first three shots with three points of ESG each (deducting 12 from 10 and neutralising them), but the remaining five shots are not being fired at 'an ESG field' as the Lyran does not declare ESG use against them, so they have to dice to hit as normal.

I'd also assumed that use of the ESG in Defensive or Offensive (ramming) mode has no effect on hellbores.

Is that wrong?
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storeylf
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Joined: 24 Jul 2008
Posts: 1875

PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

from CC32:

Q: Reading rule (5N2e), it is unclear if each ESG
used in anti-hellbore mode affects one hellbore, one
volley, or all hellbores fired in that impulse.

A: One volley, that is, all of the hellbores fired in that
impulse by one enemy ship.

So you can 'me to' any other hellbores on the same ship and get auto hits. In your example using a single ESG would give all 4 hellbore from 1 ship auto hits.

And yes, only anti-hellbore mode affects hellbores.
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Dan Ibekwe
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Joined: 08 Mar 2007
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Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2009 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting, thankyou.
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storeylf
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Joined: 24 Jul 2008
Posts: 1875

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2009 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where are the latest robot rules, I know of a set in one of the early CCs.

The matchup does seem rather biased to the lyran irrespective of hellbores/esg, 192pts to 178pts, almost an 8% points advantage. The ESG is a very good anti hellbore weapon, but a more even matchup may be more interesting. As noted else where try a stingerless Dragoon vs a Tiger, i.e a cruiser duel. The points advantage is with the Hydran, but if you feel comfortable drawing conclusions about hellbores from the hellcat vs dragoon then you should be equally happy with the dragoon vs Tiger which is a smaller points discrepancy.

Alternatively if you really want to tame the hellcat in a duel then use a stingerless Paladin, the lyran is still the higher pointed ship but only by 2 points, so it is in theory an even matchup. The mix of weapons on the Paladin will give the hellcat some interesting choices, use the ESG against the hellbores?, but then probably not be able to afford to pump the power in for future turns as you won't be facing a semi toothless ship for a turn and the last thing you want is a fusion/gatling ship a close range.
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Dan Ibekwe
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Joined: 08 Mar 2007
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Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2009 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The robot rules are on the resources page of the Commander's Circle. They're now upto revision 6, I think.
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