Friday, January 19, 2018

Best Use for Each Ship - Rebels

Some recent forum posts in the FFG community were discussing some of the lesser used ships and variants and what role they can play in a fleet.  That really got me thinking about how much the game has evolved over the last couple of years.  As of Wave 7 there are 10 different Rebel ships with 20 total variants.  Very few of them really stand out as being good in any situation, but I do think all of them can work in specialized roles.

As the oldest, and therefore wisest, of the bloggers on this site I will do my best to figure out the best use of each of the Rebel ship variants.  I know this is at best a subjective opinion, so feel free to disagree with me.  I'm sure Biggs and Truthiness will too.

And remember, we are talking about the BEST use, not the only use.

Tantive IV from A New Hope
Corellian Corvettes - Originally this was the go-to for low cost ships in Armada, but these have started to see less play with the advent of flotillas and Hammerheads. It still ranks among the fastest and most maneuverable ships in the game and whole fleets can be built around swarms of them.  Comms Net just about killed the use of the Tantive IV title.
  • CR90A - For awhile this ship was super prevalent as the best platform for Turbolaser Reroute Circuits.  I know that I at least used them a ton.  I've seen less of the design since the errata to TRCs, but it can still use them to punch well above its weight.  Probably the best platform for the Jaina's Light title that allows it to hide on or behind obstacles and still snipe away.  This ship is best as a flanker that can contribute consistent low level damage at long range.
  • CR90B - This is the only rebel ship that packs an entirely blue dice armament.  That makes it one of the best platforms for the various ion upgrades.  If only it could also take Disposable Capacitors.  I like it with Ion Cannon Batteries as a flotilla hunter, you get a good shot an accuracy with the blue dice and the extra damage from the ICBs can give you enough oomph to kill it in one go with a follow up ram.  You can also throw Dodonna's Pride on here, but it is pretty awful.  This ship is best as a platform for blue dice shenanigans.
Redemption from The Empire Strikes Back
Nebulon-B Frigates - You both see more and less of this ship as the game has progressed.  It used to be strong as a long range fire support ship and you would see multiples of them in a fleet.  Now, it is primarily relegated to the use of its two excellent titles.  And really most of that use is Yavaris, which has seen increased use as squadrons have grown more powerful.  Redemption is awful and you should never use it. 
  • Nebulon-B Support Refit - This variant is essentially just a platform for the Salvation title, which still has some of the highest potential damage for the cost of any ship in the game.  The damage spikes from that title can be just insane for the cost of the ship.  Salvation is easily the best trailer in the game with some kind of upgrade to make the red dice more consistent.  This ship is best with the Salvation title and using it to finish off damaged ships.
  • Nebulon-B Escort - Yavaris.  That's pretty much it.  Yavaris is so powerful that it justifies the inclusion of this ship in any squadron based fleet.  The 2 blue anti-squadron flak is nice, but not the reason you take this ship.  This ship is best with the Yavaris title helping you win the squadron game.
From the Empire at War game
Assault Frigate - This ship was something of a surprise when introduced to Armada as it had only appeared in one video game, while the Mk I Assault Frigate was at least a fixture in novels even if it had never appeared on screen.  It is still one of the best all around ships in the game.  Which is a problem now that the ship numbers have grown and there is a specialist for nearly everything.  Currently it is still a staple in Ackbar fleets with Gunnery Teams.

  • Assault Frigate Mk II A - I want to like this ship, but it is just too expensive for what it offers over the B variant.  It is probably the best place for the Paragon title, but that isn't exactly a glowing recommendation.  It really needs to double arc to get the most out of way its dice are laid out, but that is generally a job that is done better by MC-30s.  It might work okay with gunnery teams in an Ackbar fleet to add to your flak potential, but that isn't worth the 9 points over the B either.  This variant is probably about 5 points over-costed.  This ship is best brought in by Admiral Raddus into a double arc with the Paragon title, which still isn't very good.
  • Assault Frigate Mk II B - This ship sees so much more play than the A variant mostly due to its cost.  In the current meta you will primarily seeing it sporting the Gallant Haven title escorting Jan Ors and some X-Wings.  It can make a Rebel squadron build ridiculously resilient.  I use AF Mk II B's still in Ackbar fleets, had some fun using one in a Garm fleet with Rapid Launch Bays, and it is still the best Rebel ship for Flight Controllers.  The best use for this ship is Gallant Haven keeping your squadrons alive.
Home One from Return of the Jedi
MC-80 Home One Class - The flagship of Admiral Ackbar at the Battle of Endor is the most expensive ship in the Rebel fleet.  Even though it was released in Wave 2 it still boasts the heaviest broadside in the game with 6 dice.  Its only real weakness is its generally slow speed.  The Independence title, which was already hard to use well, became a coaster with the introduction of All Fighters Follow Me! in Wave 5.
  • MC-80 Command Cruiser - I like this variant as the centerpiece of a fleet as it can be a great enabler.  The Home One title, Projection Experts, or Fighter Coordination Teams all let this ship boost other parts of your fleet.  The 3 blue dice on the broadside are interesting for using blue dice crit effects, but is often reserved for Leading Shots.  This ship is best when taking advantage of Squadron 4 and the Home One title to lead the rest of your fleet.
  • MC-80 Assault Cruiser - This variant shines as being the only ship in the game able to take 2 defensive retrofits.  Those upgrades can be very powerful and by stacking them you can make an Assault Cruiser among the hardest ships to kill in the game.  It can also throw out more red dice than just about any ship in the game when paired with Ackbar and the Defiance title.  This variant is often built into a doom-pickle that features strong offense and defense, but gets little help from the rest of the fleet.  This ship is best when capitalizing on the double Defensive Retrofits to become ridiculously hard to kill.
MC-80 Concept Sketch used as the basis for the MC-30
MC-30 Frigates - Another early Rebel ship that came from a video game, but was actually inspired by some old concept art.  The MC-30 gave the Rebels their first black dice based ship and it has been a staple of tournament fleets since then.  It looks like a bit of glass cannon with low hull and high firepower, but possesses some of the best defensive titles in the game and ends up being surprisingly resilient.
  • MC-30 Torpedo Frigate - One of the best close range brawlers in the game, this ship is really maneuverable and hits like a brick.  With the Admonition title it can also take a ton of punishment.  These things excel as large ship hunters, but with H9 Turbolasers can also easily swat flotillas.  This ship is best with Ordnance Experts and Assault Proton Torpedoes at close range of a juicy target.
  • MC-30 Scout Frigate - This ship is a bit odd in that it features close-range firepower backed up by long-range red dice.  One use players have found for it is to have Sato turn all the dice black for maximum damage and long-range black dice death.  It is also the best place for the Foresight title, which combined with Early Warning System makes it really tough to hurt at long range.  It can be used to strafe in an Ackbar fleet with the black dice as a deterrent to people closing on you.  This ship is best using Sato to fish for black crits at long range.
A GR-75 from The Empire Strikes Back
GR-75 Transports - Immediately notable for being the cheapest ship in the game you find at least one GR-75 in most Rebel fleets based on the fact that they are so cheap.  These ships are poorly armed to say the least and even the Combat Refits couldn't have side guns for fear of Ackbar abuse. 
  • GR-75 Medium Transports - These are used for activation padding, token generation, and squadron pushing among many others.  They are surprisingly useful for the points and would likely still see tons of use for 10 points more.  I find they are fantastic flak boats.  This ship is best used with Bright Hope as a chariot for Toryn Farr while spewing flak and pushing squadrons.
  • GR-75 Combat Refit - For 5 points over the base version the Combat Refits gain the ability to shoot some blue dice and upgrade their flak to blue for a bit more range.  It's a fair price, but not one a lot of players take in order to save points for use elsewhere.  This ship is best as the second GR-75 in a fleet hanging out by the flotilla with Toryn Farr on board re-rolling the blue dice that it shoots.
Liberty from Return of the Jedi
MC-80 Liberty Class - The other version of the MC-80 plays very differently from the Home One version.  It has most of its firepower and shielding concentrated in the forward arc.  Its 5 forward shields are still the strongest in the game, although this is offset by the 2 shields in the flank which is weaker than any other large ship.  It can move well for a large ship with its Support Team upgrade and my personal experience shows it to be best at bullying small ships rather than going after the big ones. The ability to take 2 Turbolaser upgrades allows for some fun combinations.  Other than Mon Karren the titles don't see a ton of play.
  • MC-80 Star Cruiser -This variant is a fantastic small ship killer.  Slap on XI7s and maybe a Gunnery Team and it can make quick work of little ships.  I like it with Nav teams to help it turn more tightly.  It can also be a solid platform for Ion upgrades like Heavy Ion Emplacements as it throws a lot of blue dice out the front, although they compete with Leading Shots.  This ship is best flying around at high speed killing small ships and avoiding prolonged fights.
  • MC-80 Battle Cruiser -This variant tends to be the one I see more often taking advantage of the double Turbolaser upgrades.  Spinal Armaments are a popular choice to maximize the firepower coming out of the front arc at long range.  This is generally where I see the Mon Karren title, although I am not a huge fan of it.  This ship is best using 2 Turbolaser upgrades to maximize its long range firepower.
Phoenix Home from Rebels - The Siege of Lothal
Pelta Class Frigate - This ship first appeared in The Clone Wars and then had a very brief appearance in Rebels before being slagged by Darth Vader.  It was the first ship in the game to allow Fleet Commands, which can be very powerful and points efficient.  The Pelta itself is neither of those things, as you pay a tax for those Fleet Commands.  If you bring a Pelta in a fleet it is going to be because you want a Fleet Command available.  The Phoenix Home title makes this the only double Officer fleet in the game which can be very powerful.
  • Pelta Assault - The less expensive Pelta variant is the one that I tend to play more.  It is the cheapest Rebel ship that has 2 dice for anti-squadron work and the Ordnance upgrade is a great spot for External Racks.  This variant works great in a Sato fleet and can be built as a doctor by combining Shields to Maximum! and Projection Experts.  This ship is best supporting your other ships with a Fleet Command and closing on wounded enemies to finish them off.
  • Pelta Command - This version of the Pelta has better range with its weaponry and a respectable Squadron value of 3.  Because of this it is often built as a carrier and takes advantage of All Fighters Follow Me!  It is also an excellent host for Intensify Firepower! as it really benefits from the dice modification provided by that Fleet Command.  This ship is best as a support carrier that also boost your other ships with a Fleet Command.
A Hammerhead from Rogue One
Hammerhead Corvette - This ship is based off of designs from the excellent Knights of the Old republic games.  It was first brought into Rebels, but later appeared in Rogue One as well.  The FFG  model is based off the Rebels version.  It is the cheapest non-flotilla in the game and its stats can be underwhelming when compared to the CR-90.  What makes the Hammerhead really shine are its Task Force titlesThese encourage mass use of Hammerheads and I have found they work best in groups of 3-4.
  • Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette - I think of this variant as Sato's best friend.  It can take the potent Ordnance upgrades, but lacks the numbers of black dice to really consistently roll crits.  Sato helps by giving this ship the additional black dice it needs.  Because it needs to get close I've found it is a great fit with Task Force: Antilles which makes it surprisingly durable.  TF:A works really well against squadrons making this a great little flak ship as well.  This ship is best with Task Force: Antilles being used to get it close enough to unleash black dice.
  • Hammerhead Scout Corvette - If the Torpedo variant likes TF:A, the Scout loves task Force: Organa.  TF:O gives the Scout some fantastic built in dice modification.  You can tack on Quad Battery Turrets and use Concentrate Fire to get a consistent 4 dice at long range by slowly closing.  It's one of the cheapest ways of getting that level of long range firepower.  This ship is best using Task Force: Organa for re-rolls to enhance its long range firepower.
The Profundity from Rogue One
MC-75 Cruiser - The 3rd Rebel large ship still manages to bring some new things to the table.  Of course I am writing this before it is actually released, so this is obviously based on some conjecture.  The combination of Admiral Raddus and the Profundity title are going to open up whole new worlds in the deployment game and I can't wait to see what happens.

  • MC-75 Ordnance Cruiser - This ship is unique in being the first to offer double Ordnance upgrades.  There are going to be tons of shenanigans players get up to take advantage of that.  I think this ship will be best getting hyperspaced in by Raddus for black dice death on a flank.
  • MC-75 Armored Cruiser - This ship has one of the most diverse upgrade bars in the game and seems to throw every flavor of dice.  Sato is going to get all kinds of options to maximize this ship.  Having each of the three weapons upgrades available leads to fun combos like Quad Battery Turrets + Heavy Ion Emplacements with Caitken & Shollen for the re-rolls.   I think this ship will be best using Sato to roll whatever dice is needed in a given situation.
Feel free to post in the comments or on the forums about how many ways I am wrong in this post.  Better yet, post up what you think the best use is for some of these ships.  I will try to have the Imperial version up next week.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the summary, very interesting. I am curious to see the new MC-75 in action.