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Cloaks
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lb4269
Ensign


Joined: 29 Apr 2011
Posts: 14
Location: Singapore

PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 7:49 am    Post subject: Fed DD vs Rom DD Reply with quote

I have been following this thread with great interest. Our local battle group split up the empires among various players so we could get a proper handle on the tactics of each and focus properly on them. I landed the Romulans and the Hydrans. I have only played the Romulans a few times in SFB and FC, and I have never once been able to use a cloak effectively in any small scale engagement. I have a new match coming up with the Feds soon, and I'm dreading getting my butt handed to me if I'm not careful. The battle involves a DD and a frigate on both sides. I was just looking at the match up between my DD and his.

Fed DD
http://www.starfleetgames.com/federation/Commanders%20Circle/documents/ship%20cards/Federation_DD_both.pdf

Romulan DD
http://www.starfleetgames.com/federation/Commanders%20Circle/documents/ship%20cards/Romulan%20Reorginaztion/Rom_SK_LT.pdf

He out phaser-1s me 6 to 4. He has a drone. He can move nearly speed 32 while still holding some overloaded photons. His photons can do a possible 64 damage every other turn and two of them hitting can pretty much ruin my day. Meanwhile, my plasma-Fs can hit him for a possible 40 damage every three turns. He generates 23 power per turn to my 21. I out shield him, but not by much. We have same move cost but I at least out turn him.

I feel the battle looks a lot better from his bridge than it does from mine. If I don't get him on the sneak in under cloak, I feel I probably won't get him at all. The problem setting up the battle was that the points are nearly the same. 105 vs 102 looks like a pretty close match on the surface.

I will continue to follow this thread with great interest. Our group has not been able to get seemingly balanced Romulan vs neighbor battles when based solely on ships points.

(We aren't short of experience either. I'm coming up on 25 years in the SFU!)
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Savedfromwhat
Commander


Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 641

PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well there is good news and bad news in your scenario. You will have the Turn Mode advantage for starters (that Fed DD turns like Pig), you also have less power yes, but you start the game with your Plasma F's both armed while he will have to burn batteries for his Photons. The Fed Frigate is a bargain at 75 points and there really isn't a good Romulan equivalent, the Snipe is cool but can't take any damage before it gets scragged.

Anyway, you will definitely want to ignore your cloak in this game and play hard and fast, your opponent cannot load all of his photons and still move at a good speed. (He will be required to go 24 which leaves him with 9 points of power and only 7 on the first turn if he preloads). Stay out of range 8 unless you are getting a killing blow on that DD and he doesn't have overloads. You have a very fast ship compared to the Fed's your biggest threat will be his little frigate it is fast, maneuverable and packs a bigger punch than it looks like it can, make sure you target energy with your phasers against it because taking out a frigates power is the fastest way to get a mission kill on it.

DO NOT SNEAK IN! Can't stress that enough on this matchup, you want to be on the offensive and pull off a Plasma Ballet where you dodge in and out saber dance style.
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Klingon of Gor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 01 Jun 2011
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You've got some advantages and some disadvantages. I agree with what Savedfromwhat has written, in that cloak will not avail you here. At speed 24, you've got some ability to stay outside range 8, which denies him a good photon torpedo shot.

Note that even under EM, you will still outurn him by a considerable margin.

The phaser matchup is better than you think. You have a lot more ability to soak phaser damage than he does. Your phaser 3s should be adequate to protect you from his drones, and as a last resort you have tractors. He can't use his drones to force you to burn phaser 1s on defensive fire. Yes, he has 6 phaser 1s to your 4, but to fire them in a single volley, he has to centerline you. You can use all your phaser 1s anywhere in your front arc. Given your turn mode advantage, it should be easier to for you to put him in your front arc than it is for him to centerline you. Note that putting him on a number 2 or number 6 hexside will faciliate turning away to open the range after you fire. Given your greater ability to soak damage, you could put him in your L or R arcs, hit him with only three phasers, and you still might deliver more actual damage. And should you get in his rear half, he has few bearing phasers.

Whether you bolt or fire seekers, you have to stay outside range 8. You can come in oblique, bolt or launch plasma at range 9-10, and then turn away. Trying to launch two torps at once means coming at him head to head, and you have to be careful about that. Also, it's easier for you if you aren't doing the third turn of reloading on both torps at the same time. (Although, if push comes to shove, you could do the third turn of rearming on both torps just off your batteries, although that clearly entails certain risks.)

You'll have to be careful, and you'll have to be patient, but on the whole, I'd rather play this one as the Romulans.
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Savedfromwhat
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Joined: 23 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I too would rather be the romulans here. Do what you can to avoid having to bolt, it is usually a loss.
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JonPerry
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 127

PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are/were facing a refitted destroyer, with 2 photons swapped out for drones or plasmas, I think it would be a very difficult fight for you.

As it is, he's going to have a rough time with his power requirements. He has near-cruiser energy needs with destroyer energy.

Getting to the question of balance, is it worth looking past the tactical utility of cloaks, and move toward the strategic utility of cloaks? I know that FedCom is a tactical game, but when you ask the question of "why bother installing these things", I'd think that the strategic use of cloak would have to come into play.

sort of along that line - I would think that Romulans would be ideal base busters. In the campaign Storeylf/Tarq style campaign we are in, I fear what will happen when the Roms draw a "base assault" scenario.
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Klingon of Gor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 01 Jun 2011
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Savedfromwhat wrote:

Quote:
Do what you can to avoid having to bolt, it is usually a loss.


It is rare for me even to consider bolting. The only reason I bring it up here is that the Romulan has no heavy plasma, and F torps don't run all that far.

The only other thought I could add about this scenario is that if the Feds blow a photon torpedo roll, they are likely to regret it. If the Romlulan dives in close, four phaser 1s and four phaser 3s will hurt. As a Romulan, I'd be alert for any opportunity to make a close range phaser strike.
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lb4269
Ensign


Joined: 29 Apr 2011
Posts: 14
Location: Singapore

PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:50 am    Post subject: Cloak-less? Reply with quote

Savedfromwhat wrote:
I too would rather be the romulans here.


Having seen your avatar, I kind of figured that. Surprised

The above game is about to get started as a PBEM. Perhaps I can share the results as it moves along?

I thought it interesting that nearly everyone was telling me that the cloak would not help me here in this fight. Except for one large fight I had a few years back, I still have never seen it come into play much (pun fully intended).

Note my tactful way of pulling this thread back to its original purposse. Wink
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Klingon of Gor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 01 Jun 2011
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One final (And I do mean final bit of advice regarding bolts in this scenario.

Do NOT bolt if you manage to get on his six. You probably an't hit him with a seeking F if you're looking at his back sheilds, but holding it in the tubes gives a disincentive to HET
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Savedfromwhat
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Joined: 23 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 4:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JonPerry wrote:
If you are/were facing a refitted destroyer, with 2 photons swapped out for drones or plasmas, I think it would be a very difficult fight for you.

sort of along that line - I would think that Romulans would be ideal base busters. In the campaign Storeylf/Tarq style campaign we are in, I fear what will happen when the Roms draw a "base assault" scenario.


Jon, I mostly agree with you here, in Federation Commander bases are basically sitting ducks when it comes to any seeking weapon empire (The Kzinti's are actually nastier then the Romulans as special sensors are less effective against drones in some respects). While the cloak definitely helps I don't see it as a large enough factor to validate the costs of such expensive tech. The strategic impact of the cloak even seems to be a gimmick in Federation and Empire. It is almost as if the cloak is treated as a inconvenient plot device from the television show that should only inherit the weak qualities but maintain its negatives (i.e. No hidden movement, ship can still be locked onto/fired upon, huge energy cost, BPV cost, movement penalty, can't fire). Honestly with all the negative effects it seems to balance itself out without the BPV increase.

Also a different Fed Destroyer would really mix up the game but if I had to play as the Fed I would probably only load 2 photons at a time, severely limiting my damage potential but giving myself that extra power that I will definitely need. A nice close Photon Shot and then the ability to HET and run would be my goal.

KoG,
Agreed it is best to get all the options on the table.

4269,
Please do share the game with us it sounds like it could be very interesting.
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Savedfromwhat
Commander


Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 641

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

IB4269, did you start your PBEM game? If so how is it going?
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Kang
Fleet Captain


Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 1963
Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we have agreed that the cloak is useful, for the initial approach at least.

However, something to remember is that the scenario rules state that all ships start uncloaked. Therefore, against a drone user, remember to get that cloak activated in the first impulse, or his drones will be in flight in Turn 1 if he can get close enough to launch before you cloak.
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Savedfromwhat
Commander


Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 641

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No we haven't agreed that the cloak is useful on the initial approach.

It might be better to say that if you plan to use the cloak to approach you must do so in the first impulse or you will have to take drone hits.

It is NOT necessarily a wise decision to approach under cloak.
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Kang
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Joined: 23 Sep 2007
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Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Savedfromwhat wrote:
No we haven't agreed that the cloak is useful on the initial approach.

It might be better to say that if you plan to use the cloak to approach you must do so in the first impulse or you will have to take drone hits.

It is NOT necessarily a wise decision to approach under cloak.

You're right - that is a much better way of putting it.
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Klingon of Gor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 01 Jun 2011
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 1:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Savedfromwhat wrote:

Quote:
KoG,
Agreed it is best to get all the options on the table.


Indeed. I was involved in a recent game where my opponent used bolts on me with some effect. We were picking through the cards, and he expressed an interest in playing the Gorn light raiding dread. And I felt like being a Klingon. And I decided that I wanted to fly a C7 heavy battlecruiser. And he looked at me a bit strangely, and pointed out that I would be outpointed. ANd I said yeah, but the C7 turns better than any dread, and has those nice arcs, and does that Klingon 3 and 5 hexrow trick. And I just want to see if I can pull it off.

As it turned out, he never got much use out of his seekers, simply because the C7 had so much reserve power that it could run out just about any seeker he threw at it. Bolts, however, are another matter. Eventually, the game was called for time. I couldn't do much to him because he had massive sheilds and lots of batteries. On the other hand, I wasn't an easy target either, because he was a bit short on phasers, I could throw lots of drones, and tagging a C7 with seeking plasma takes a bit of work. But the bolts, although most of them missed, were wearing away my sheilds. At times it felt a bit like fighting hellbores. We may try it again sometime.

Hydrans are another case where you may be reduced to bolting, but if you're a plasma race fighting Hydrans, you're probably dead whether you bolt or not.

Offering to fight a Gorn dread, even a raiding dread, in a C7 was arguably rash, but it was a fun game.
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pmiller13
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 12 May 2009
Posts: 64

PostPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not sure why one would say that you must decide to cloak out on impulse one. Since other functions come before launch a ship planning on cloaking can do it the impulse before they enter 25 hexes. For example on impulse three say the range is 26 hexes, the ship that wants to cloak announces cloaking. No seeking weapons can be fired because of the range. Next impulse say the range has closed to 21 hexes, by the time a launching ship wants to get some drones out its to late as the target has become fully cloaked.

Now if you are trying to say you have to decide early in a battle if you are going to use the cloak to approach or not then I might agree with you. But that only makes good sense, have a plan and stick with it till forced to change by circumstance.
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