Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Support Team Upgrades

Support Teams! That one slot with the face that isn't your Officer slot!
What's that Ma'am? You say Demolisher is OP? Yes, that is troubling, please remain on the line.
Let's hop right into it.
Listen, I know it's on fire, but the datapad says the first step is checking in with your team to make sure everyone is engaged.
Auxiliary Shields Team is from Rebellion in the Rim, and it's super nice on several ships.  You can increase the shields in their side zone by 1 when you recover them or move them.  Generally, this is on any ship with a Nav team that doesn't want Engine Techs, or has a plan that doesn't involve Engine Techs or FCT (those are 2 different things).  Realistically, I expect to see this in the wild on Nebulons, Libertys, Interdictors, specific Pelta/Glad builds, Vics named Harrow that don't want Engine Techs for some reason, and specific Command Arquitens builds.  Mainly though, Nebs and Libs.  Engineering on turn 1 takes a Nebulon from a 3-1-2 spread to a 3-2-1 spread (which is a standard Pelta/Glad shield zone spread).  Leia and Garm can let you get a 3-2-2 spread, which.... ain't bad, actually.  You CAN'T take this on anything that already has Shields 4 (well, you CAN, but it's pointless), so no HMC80s for you.  For everyone who's ever complained about a ship being too squishy on the sides, this is the upgrade you've always wanted.
Removing your goggles isn't OSHA safe!
The gold standard for support teams is Engine Techs.  Giving you an extra joint of speed means you can have Gladiators moving at speed "4," CR90s at speed "5," and HMC80s at speed "3."  That extra speed means so much, as it improves Gladiators' chances of double-arcing, the HMC80 gets much less predictable in its final location/lets you turn just a little more and close a little faster, or gets that CR90 out of range (after firing) right after getting into it.  This upgrade is so good that anyone who can take it probably should take it, with the points cost being the one prohibitive against it.  8 points on a CR90 might be cause for concern, but 8 points on a large base is an easier sell.  The extra speed on things like Munificents, Harrow VicsHMC80s, and Interdictors allows them to be useable, especially in this Onager world we live in.  Discussions of the necessity of such an upgrade to make a speed 2 ship viable are.... better left elsewhere. 

The latest change in 1.5 means that if you overlap (aka ram) a ship, the card exhausts and you don't get to use it, nor do you get to double-ram them.  (Minor timing issues aside, I'm aware of them and every judge I've talked to has told me they intend to rule it as 'no double-ramming.' I'm only mentioning it here in case of curiosity in the comments about it; you can't double ram full stop).  The double-ram was more the icing on the extra speed cake, and I can promise you that anyone who was taking the upgrade before when they could double ram is still taking it now, when they can't.

The last note I'll make is that Engine Techs just allows a Speed 1 maneuver.  So, your Gladiator gets 2 clicks.  Your HMC80 and LMC80 only get 1, no matter what you do or want.  This is after the regular maneuver step, so Madine doesn't trigger, nor can you spend the extra click you got from a navigation dial.  Keep that in mind when you're using this.  It DOES combo with Take Evasive Action! or Jerrjerrod however, so you can get an extra click in that speed 1 maneuver (if and only if you're going speed 1!).
See, she has her goggles on.  Safety is important!  I think it's a she.  Could be Skrillex.  Has anyone seen my bass?
Engineering Team is relatively straightforward.  When you Engineer, through token or dial, gain an extra point.  This doesn't stack if you use both token and dial (A+A/2+1, not +1+1).  This is super fun combined with the Redemption, as that DOES stack.  Getting 2 extra Engineering points a turn can mean the difference between removing 2 damage or just removing 1, but even 1 means that your Nebulon B always has Engineering 3 (Token gets half value, which turns 3 into 2, and then you add 1, bringing it back to 3).  Even if you only get 1 extra point and you need all your others for restoring shields or healing damage, you can use that extra point to push a shield around from a side you're NOT getting attacked on.  It's aggressively fine, but I've yet to see anyone turn this card into something crazy.  If you have the slot, I'd most likely look at another card in this article first.  I'm not counting it entirely out, but I'm not recommending it.
If we hit that bullseye, the rest of the dominoes should fall like a house of cards. Checkmate.  "Euugh."
Fighter Coordination Team is a great way to move squadrons into position.  Giving your speed 2 squadrons an extra distance 1 move is better than making them speed 3 (as in Armada, distance 1 + distance 2 is greater than distance 3).  It allows you to both bring squadrons into engagement for firing during the squadron phase or getting a better shot off with the Yavaris title. (The RRG/FAQ states that you can't use this ability and Yavaris's ability on the same activation.) You can put it on Yavaris, and it still triggers on squadrons that you're not adding a dice to their attack.  However, you can put FCT on a nearby Pelta or MC80 to move those squadrons into position in one activation and then let Yavaris trigger on the next.  Frankly, I'll still probably put it on Yavaris itself.  I can't use it to bump squadrons into position this turn, but 3 points to move B-wings distance 1 on turn 1 and possibly turn 2? Sounds good to me, man.

It's a great upgrade, just make sure you put it on a ship that is at least squadrons 2, else you're really not getting a good use out of it. You can put it on an HMC80 build, just moving along 4 fighters  at a time.  FCT works great with B-wings, or if you're an Imperial, YV-666s on the Interdictor.  You can, I suppose, put it on an Arquitens or the Gladiator, but that's a lot of extra points and you're in the Engine Techs slot, respectively.  The upgrade/slot generally needs a good reason to NOT be Engine Techs, but you do you.  Also, general note: FCT for slow squads.  Your A-wings really don't need it, but your VCXs sure appreciate it.
I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV!
Medical Team is only a point.  And it gets rid of any Crew damage cards.  What this cancels out specifically:
  • Compartment Fire x2 - You cannot ready your defense tokens 
  • Crew Panic x2 - Before revealing your command dial, discard it with no effect, or reveal it, but take one damage 
  • Blinded Gunners x2 - You cannot spend Accuracy rolls while attacking 
  • Comm Noise x2 - Your opponent may either reduce speed by 1 or choose a new command on your command dial, then flip face down 
  • Life Support Failure x2 - Discard all command tokens, you may not have any command tokens 
  • Damaged Controls x2 - When you overlap a ship or obstacle, deal a face down damage card to your ship (in addition to all other obstacle effects) 
  • Injured Crew x4 - Choose and discard 1 of your defensive tokens, then flip this card facedown
16 damage cards out of a total of 52 cards, so it's about a 30% chance this will help you.  With the exception of Comms Noise and Life Support Failure, these aren't the most devastating of crits, but they are troublesome.  The ability to just cancel them out though is super nice.  Your opponent doesn't get to add in another one or replace it or anything like that, you just cancelled it.  This can shut down APT crits, or even prevent you from taking that final damage needed to kill you.  Is it an auto-include? No.  Can it be fun if you have a point leftover? Yeah, definitely. Its best usage may be in allowing you to yell lines like "They hit the medical frigate!" and "We're on a diplomatic mission to Alderaan!" And to ME, that can easily be worth a point in my list, haha.  It can combine with Tide of Progress XII to basically prevent the first face-up damage card to hit your ship no matter what, but your opponent can also choose NOT to resolve any face-up crits if they so desire.

Don't expect it to save everything, but you'll remember the games where it helps more than it hurts you.  If you fly badly, it's not going to matter, but it can pull your bacon out of the fire if something goes slightly bad.
This will be the best Sim City game ever!
Nav Team is half of Madine's ability.  It doesn't stack with him.  It DOES let your non-Madine commanded ships turn better though.  It also seems like it may be helpful in certain Leia builds, as you may not often want to change your speed by 2 (maybe on the hammerheads, sure, but not necessarily on the Nebulons or some of the other ships you end up using) but you DO want to turn harder.  It won't need to be on every ship, but if you're centered around turning better, go for it.  On H1MC80s and Peltas I like Engine Techs more, myself.  But Nebulon B's and LMC80s (stuff that has a "front towards enemy" mindset) can go for this, as can a CR90 that wants to turn SUPER sharp and start harassing your opponent.   Any ship that takes this though does need to answer why they aren't spending 4 more points for Engine Techs on it instead, and that may be a playstyle or a total points thing.

You can tell the Mon Cal is in charge because his desk is facing a different way than the other guys.
Projection Experts is something that I think is finally coming into its own.  The card basically describes it, but you can push your shields to someone else, giving them more survivability (FAQ, you can also use it to push shields into the empty zones of Aspiration, just not past their base value).  As shields are generally better than hull (redirects usually stop working when you're out of shields), restoring the shields on ships with redirects keeps them alive much longer.  Or you can put more shields back in the front and side of the Nebulon B, because it doesn't like taking damage.  Of course, by doing this all, you're removing shields from your own ship, which means you're robbing Peter to pay Paul.  Stupid Paul, taking damage like that.

You can use the REST of your engineering points to restore a shield or two to your own ship, which is somewhat helpful, but you're still technically down shields.  Keep this on a ship in the back that won't be taking fire until later in the game and you can work around this, somewhat.  The BEST way to get use out of this is on some sort of ship with Engineering 4 that you can fire this off with a token, giving you 6 engineering points that turn.  With 2/6 you push 2 shields onto someone else, and the remaining 4 let you restore your own shields.  You can do this with Raymus Antilles, but that's 7 points JUST dedicated to restoring shields.  If only there was a different way.....
Who's leaving pictures of Leia Organa for some reason?
Combining Projection Experts with a Shields to Maximum! Pelta or Cymoon ISD, as you can then restore 3 shields on ships per turn.  And with the Hammerhead shielding being so light, this is a pretty fun way of keeping them alive even longer.  You can also do some work with this and Wat Tambor to pull shields from one ship and either replace them on your own/on someone else's or back to the original ship in a different shield zone entirely.


  1. The new faq makes engine techs on Demolisher less effective sadly ...

    1. Good catch and I've amended that for John. It's still possible for Demolisher to attack on the first turn, but no longer does that have anything to do with Engine Techs. I still consider Engine Techs a top-notch upgrade on Gladiators (and some other ships), but the synergy with Demolisher is no longer so powerful.

    2. I also want to add that it feels like a week or two after John and I think we've caught everything related to the errata change, something new always pops up to make us feel foolish, haha.

  2. Hey great stuff! So just to be clear though with Fighter Coordination Team... if say three of my ships had this upgrade they could all move an unengaged squadron distance 1 for a total of distance 3. Is that correct?

    So, for instance, an unengaged X-Wing squadron would move distance 6 (3 base + 3 bonus) by the end of the round with said three FCT ships using their upgrade?

    1. Kind of, yes. They only move D1 when the ship finishes a maneuver, so the squads need to patiently wait their way through all the Fighter Coordination Team activations. Furthermore, D1 is the longest distance segment, so the reality is that three D1 moves is a bit shy of D4, actually.

    2. Awesome! Thanks!

  3. When aux shield team says "you" does it mean the ship, or the player? Can you use projection experts from ship B to overcharge the shields on the aux-team ship? Or can they only be overcharged by its own repair commands?

    1. "You" on upgrade cards *always* means the ship the upgrade is equipped to, so you can't Projection Experts shields to the Auxiliary Shield Team ship. The overcharging is only possible when that ship executes a repair command itself.