Thursday, August 1, 2019

The Ballad of Garm

I'm here again at GenCon to take another swing at the Armada North American Championships.  This is my 4th time at the tournament.  In my previous 3 attempts I have managed to lose pretty badly in the first round.  I had hoped to combat that by getting to bed a little early this evening.  Then someone in my hotel decided to smoke weed in their room and set off the building fire alarm.

So, thanks to that and my 3-hour jet lag I am now wide awake.  So I figured I would write a bit about the fleet I will be playing tomorrow.

It's time for Garm's Dumpster Fire to take on GenCon.

If you've been reading this blog then you have likely heard of the Dumpster Fire Fleet.  It's something that Biggs and I concocted last spring.  You can read all about its inception HERE.

Essentially the goal of the Dumpster Fire is to:
  1. Feed Intensify Firepower to get improve the damage rolls of 4 ships
  2. Bring a medium squad compliment with plenty of hull
  3. Utilize a flanking trailer style attack
  4. Maximize Garm's tokens
We called it a Dumpster Fire as it really used a bunch of pieces that don't normally feature in a fleet.  The hope would be that the whole would be greater than the sum of its parts.

The funny thing actually worked.  Both Biggs and I played some games with it and found that the fleet did pretty well.  To our even greater surprise we started getting reports back from the online Armada community of other players using the fleet to success as well.  People were finding it was a fun fleet to play and a fairly effective one.

So, Biggs did the only acceptable thing and took the fleet to Worlds.  You can read about that HERE and HERE.  I honestly thought he did pretty well, but we both found some weaknesses to the fleet in high end tournament play.

Around this point I knew I was going to GenCon.  I weighed bringing a few different fleets, but the overall enthusiasm for the Dumpster Fire convinced me I should try bring my good friend Garm back to GenCon.

So, I set about stress testing and revising the fleet as best as I could.  The Worlds meta was dominated by Pryce based 2-ship Imperial fleets with heavy squads.  The finals also both had heavy squad compliments in their fleets.  So I arranged matches to help me start trying out different squad and ship combos up against full squad builds.

It did not go well...

I was generally getting creamed by my opponents (thanks Chris and Derek).  I tried different squad combinations and even working Bail into the fleet to break up last/first shenanigans.  Bail caused me a whole new set of problems though.  I kind of had to feature the Bail ship and set it up for its activation.  That took away from me flying the rest of the fleet to its best ability and the whole thing would fall apart.  He was getting in the way of me coordinating my fire.

A host of different ships and squads were tried out, but in the end this is the fleet I settled on, The Dumpster Fire Mk 14:

Points: 400/400  
Commander: Garm Bel Iblis
Assault Objective: Station Assault
Defense Objective: Contested Outpost
Navigation Objective: Intel Sweep
[ flagship ] MC80 Star Cruiser (96 points)
-  Garm Bel Iblis  ( 25  points) 
-  Strategic Adviser  ( 4  points) 
-  Nav Team  ( 4  points) 
129 total ship cost
Nebulon-B Escort Frigate (57 points)
-  Yavaris  ( 5  points) 
62 total ship cost
Hammerhead Scout Corvette (41 points)
-  Slaved Turrets  ( 6  points) 
47 total ship cost
Modified Pelta-class Command Ship (60 points)
-  Ahsoka Tano  ( 2  points) 
-  Fighter Coordination Team  ( 3  points) 
-  Intensify Firepower!  ( 6  points) 
71 total ship cost
1 Biggs Darklighter ( 19 points) 
1 Jan Ors ( 19 points) 
1 Gold Squadron ( 12 points) 
2 X-Wing Squadrons ( 26 points) 
1 VCX-100 Freighter ( 15 points) 
91 total squadron cost
About the only thing that has stayed the same in the fleet since the beginning is Garm and that IF! toting Command Pelta.  Everything else has been swapped around.  But, the philosophy behind the fleet has remained intact.  (91 points is probably no longer a medium squad build)

I'll write more later about how the fleet works, but this is the form that I think is ready for GenCon.  We will find out if that is true in the morning.

Assumong there are no more fire alarms.


  1. Update: Shmitty is currently at 16 points going into R3, and up against Geek19.

  2. Update 2, He went all the way. Won Gencon

  3. If only we would get a fleet list overview from FFG, where the winning deck retains its name dumpster fire. Congratulations!

  4. Amazing. This further cements my view of the game that a good player can take a dumpster on fire to a big event and win. Looking at this list makes me go "why". But this also proves that there are no bad ships. Initial deployment is key and that you should have fun with a list.