Thursday, December 2, 2021

BIG Holiday Tournament!

Twas the month before World Cup
And all through Vassal
All the players were cursing
John's latest rules hassle

You too will be able to own a hula hoop...

Hit the jump for the newest and zaniest plan!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Guest post: “A Frank Correspondence on the Future of Armada”

Eric here in bold text. We've got a new guest post from regular contributor GiledPallaeon and it's... well, it's not optimistic. Honestly, he's unhappy. And while I normally defer to John's usually more optimistic outlook for the official blog position, I agree with GP. And given what's happened in the last two-ish weeks, so does John at this point despite his earlier optimism. GP wrote most of this on August 31st after the AMG Ministravaganza non-news hit the Armada community like a brick to the face (22 hours of programming, not a single minute for Armada to allay concerns after the early "nothing for you for a year and a half at least" announcement) but it got lost in edit-hell until today. I don't want to steal GP's thunder, so I'll let him take it from here and I'll be back briefly at the end.

Hey folks. GP here. It’s, ahh, Tuesday, August 31, 2021. It’s currently 9:20pm where I live, and my sick wife is on one side of me, and my leftover jambalaya from this weekend is on the other, as I eat while I write.

Today sure sucked, didn’t it?

I’m not going to lie to you, I was angry when I read the schedule. I still am angry. Very. Angry. But I’m also sad, and disappointed, and I don’t want to send you through what I did. I do, however, want to offer an alternative view to what John posted here a week ago (God it feels longer than that). So let’s talk.

What’s my Armada story? My Armada story is that Armada was my first miniatures game. Yup, it was my first, and in all likelihood it will always hold a special place in my heart as my favorite. Rose-tinted glasses are probably involved; I was there for all sorts of shit. AdmiralNelson, the infamous Flotilla Wars, the ascendancy of Pryce, the wait for the Super, the wait for the Clone Wars. The collapse of IRL gaming during the pandemic, even as Clone Wars arrived. I was there for all of that, and I’ve been positive and bullish about the game through all of it.

I remember when I discovered the game. I was working as a student assistant on a co-op rotation with the Georgia Tech Research Institute. I was living with my parents outside Atlanta, since it was the summer, my first summer after coming to Georgia Tech, and I was walking back to MARTA, Atlanta’s metro system. I was scrolling through Facebook (ahh 2015, when Facebook wasn’t a dystopian hellscape bending the collective will to insanity, or at least if it was we didn’t know it). I saw an ad (that’s how you know how old this is, Facebook ads were worth a damn), and it was, I think, this image.

You old hands know this picture. Way way back when the only thing out was Wave 1. I saw this, and I’ll admit I was intrigued. A spaceship game? Star Wars? No painting? (I hate painting. It always feels inadequate.) But then I searched on Google. This was the first FFG article that came up.

Wave 2. God, those were heady days. Star Destroyers, kings of the battlefield. Ackbar gunlines as far as the eye could see. Raiders and MC30s duking it out for small ship supremacy. Arguments about APT and ACM raged. My first game, played out of a core set and an extra Victory, played on the carpeted floor of my parents’ guest/spare bedroom. Games with a close friend I’m still in touch with, played in parks and on the floors of Georgia Tech dorm rooms.

I got into competitive Armada the Regionals season after the Interdictor came out. That would have been December 2016. My first tournament at Giga-Bites Cafe. I went 1-3, would have been 2-2 if I hadn’t forgotten about Montferrat. I brought my Interdictor/double Glad list because it was the first list I had ever beat my regular opponent with twice in a row. From there, the world opened up to me.

I’ve traveled this country to play this game. I’ve played a game now up on YouTube while I was in the Land Down Under. I’ve met people from all over the world, made many dear friends. I’m attending a wedding because of this game. In case it wasn’t clear, I love this game. I love this community. To the Armada community, I want to tell you: what we have is special, and don’t ever let that we have it lead you to doubt how precious it is and how much we should treasure our game, and most of all, each other. We may not all get along, hell, we definitely don’t. But this is our game, and we are each other’s people. Remember that. Tell your Armada story. Tell it loud, so the whole world knows how great this game is.

AMG. Asmodee North America. We need to fucking talk.

I could rant at you. I could rage. I could complain. I could point out I’ve spent the last year husbanding my doubts, holding out hope against hope that despite the awful circumstances that brought us to this point, things could and would get better. I’ve actively avoided airing those doubts publicly, in the name of community support. They haven’t gotten better. Why?

Let’s be clear about what’s happened here. Asmodee, you annihilated FFG. The company was in the best place it had ever been in. The miniatures division finally thought they had caught up. They had a plan going forward, ready to execute. And you, Asmodee, dropped the hammer. The FFG team was fired, on almost no notice. You handed the games to a company that, at the time, had one game on its platter. That had no one with experience with any of the three FFG miniatures games. And you gave them all to AMG, during a global pandemic, and let one FFG developer make the transition. Then you fired him too. All of the Clone Wars releases were their work, finished before the pandemic even started.

AMG. We can lay a lot of blame at Asmodee’s feet. We can have a long discussion about how the Clone Wars launch for Armada was wildly successful and apparently surprised the suits in charge of the decisions that somehow expected this game to fail. This community is resilient. It has to be, to have survived as long as it has through what it has. But here we are.

You’ve had these games for a year. All you have released for Armada is a poorly balanced “OP” format for a three day event that included two work days and gave no one any notice to try to organize games to celebrate Armada or its new custodianship in your care. You have, despite maintaining the breakneck pace of Marvel: Crisis Protocol development that has seen the release on average of a new pack every two weeks, not had the time or the manpower to learn Armada and begin new work on future expansions.

You even owned up to that, to your credit. No one was thrilled when you admitted that there was nothing currently in development for Armada. But no one was particularly surprised either, given the year’s worth of open letters, closed letters, podcast and YouTube invitations, from community leaders, from bloggers, from the old playtesting teams across the country eager to get to work creating your vision of the future of Armada. All those missives, and in large part, silence. The odd “We’ll reach out to you when we’re ready”. A year. And here we are.

I won’t lie, as a community we have something of a chip on our shoulder. We know we’re the red-headed stepchild. We always have been. We’ve survived a serious lack of attention that would have killed lesser games. If anything, it’s a testament to the fundamental strength of the Armada core systems. This game could have been dominant, a truly historic way. When my son and his friends talk about miniatures games set around spaceships, it could have been “Well it’s no Star Wars: Armada”, just like my generation’s “Well it’s no Battlefleet Gothic.” It still can be. But you need to give a shit.

You have three days of content around your games coming up with the Ministravaganza. 22 hours of scheduled content. The lion’s share of it goes to your flagship, Crisis Protocol. Nobody faults you for this. I’d be proud of my flagship game too.

Here’s the rub though. You promised to support Armada. You just told us nothing is in the pipeline for development, we know. But at least throw us a bone. You said you were planning to support the game. Paint an ISD pink. Talk to us in a short little panel about what you do and don’t like about where the game is now, and where you’re interested in taking it. I’d tell you you promised, but I’ll do you one better. You really need to.

See, here’s the thing. I said I’ve flown all over this country and played Armada. I’ve literally played it on the opposite side of the planet. I know a lot of the community organizers, the guys and gals who go out and get tournaments organized. The folks who hype regular gamenights, who teach new players, and give up their time in huge quantities to support the game. I’m one of them. We’re tired. And today broke us.

We’ve been keeping up that brave face. Pushing back against the folks that wail and gnash their teeth that the game is dead. We’ve filled in where you haven’t been to keep the community going. We’ve been relying on your promise for OP towards the end of this year, going into next year to keep our hopes up. We didn’t expect a huge showing at the Ministravaganza, but we hoped for something. A lifeline, to help us keep making the case that the game isn’t dead.

Nobody you care about is selling out of the game. We all love it too much for that. But you dropped a bomb today. And this one got through our armor. A lot of us are seriously considering how much of our time, talent, and treasure we are going to keep investing into a game and a company that clearly doesn’t care, even when the obvious business case makes itself. Under FFG, Armada during a release quarter would consistently be the third or fourth best-selling miniatures game in the world, behind only 40K, X-wing, and once it was on the scene, Legion. That’s phenomenal, but it was apparently never enough. To the community organizer point, we won’t just up and walk away, we can’t bring ourselves to that. But we’ll back up, and we’ll put less and less in. And that will slowly but surely whittle the community away, the community you need to sell your games. Because we talk, and we remember. And we will remember.

I won’t beg. I’ve asked nicely often enough, and here I am asking nicely, one more time. Please, give us something to show that the game you want to make money on will be here for us to spend our money on. Convince us that you’re a company of your word. Start doing some basic damage control, because this is rapidly approaching a catastrophic meltdown, and by then it will be far, far too late to save the game we love, and that we would love to teach you to love. Give Armada that chance, by giving us the attention not that we deserve, that you promised. Show us what you’re made of, and we can save the game together. Or this can be how Armada dies, not with thunderous applause, but with that quiet, slow death of ignominy this beautiful, wonderful game deserves so much better than.

I’m never going to sell my Armada collection. My Chimaera will be a pride of my model collection for the rest of my life. I plan to teach my son one day, and any other children I may have. Please help there still be a game to teach them, and a community to play with when that day comes.

9/9 ADDENDUM: So here we are. I’ll take the fall for the gap between when I originally wrote this and when it’s going up, I was unclear to Eric and John when this was done and ready for posting. Upside (“upside”) is that it has taken long enough that it is now the day that AMG has deigned to release their Hunting Season event rules. I will continue my blunt assessment from above, which is unchanged: what the hell is this?

AMG, this doesn’t even look like someone who plays Armada very much wrote it. Even if I account for the event clearly being designed by committee, phrases like “if its activation slider matches the initiative token” are so poorly phrased that it’s jarring to read. Just say “if unactivated” and be done with it. I need to get three hits on five black dice to do anything, and that’s if my opponent gets no blue hits to cancel my hits? A major selling point of Armada for much of the community is that it isn’t Yahtzee style dice vs dice. I understand that makes it the red-headed step child of the three ex-FFG Star Wars games since both Legion and X-wing use that system, but that doesn’t make it appealing to us.

I left off your effort last year, the “Unconventional Warfare” event, out of my complaints in the above article. It was very poorly balanced, but you also had only just then been given Armada. I was willing to let it go if you clearly made efforts to improve. I don’t see those efforts here, nearly a year later. And while we’re on the subject of learning lessons, let’s discuss the other lesson you clearly didn’t learn from last year, despite the (we thought) loud and pointed complaints. There’s a bloody pandemic on. 650,000 people here in the US are dead. Hundreds of thousands more are currently ill. Of note, while the numbers were smaller last time around, this is exactly the same situation you tried the same release schedule for last year.

What planet are you living on where working people, who can afford these games, can just drop whatever their previous plans were and make arrangements to play these games at the drop of a hat? Again, you gave less than 24 hours notice that there would be an event at all. Again, you orient the event around workdays that are difficult enough for most of your players, who have jobs and families, and all of that is before trying to game safely during another surge in a highly virulent, highly lethal pandemic. What are you thinking? To paraphrase a friend of mine, if this is your idea of “organized play”, you are in serious need of a dictionary.

You couldn’t have dug yourselves out of the hole you’ve managed to dig with just some little one-off event. But you could have put down the shovel. Instead, there’s dirt in my eye. Hopefully your “major announcement” about the “preserving the future of the Star Wars games”, which as of this writing I have not seen nor seen a scheduled time for release for, is less disastrous. I hold out hope. Why I don’t know, but I do, for now.

Eric back. There's been really no good news for our spaceships game and AMG seems intent on letting us slowly die off while they do no work on actually developing or supporting our game past "we'll reprint models and give you really terrible organized play events." I don't like coming to this conclusion - I love Armada, I've spent hundreds of hours playing Armada and writing this blog. But that's where I'm at. We'll keep the blog updated but there's really nothing new to update it about right now so I'm expecting new articles will be coming out at a slow pace. If you want to catch up with us, I'll be joining my fellow BIG members(and GP too!) playing Dropfleet Commander and I'd encourage you to give it a try as well. Maybe AMG will suddenly decide to give Armada some love and it will make a miraculous recovery but even should that ideal situation happen we've got at least until 2023.

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Introducing the Armada Nuzlocke League

What's up?  It's Biggs writing a blog post for once. Welcome to September, which means the year is almost over!  It's time to do something interesting for Star Wars Armada.  So, in the interest of doing something interesting, we're going to run the first ever Armada Nuzlocke League!

What is a Nuzlocke?

So, in Pokemon, a Nuzlocke run is a way to add additional challenge to what is not a particularly difficult game.  The basics are that you catch the first Pokemon in each region you go to, and that you lose access to that Pokemon if it is ever KO'd.  This limits the selection and availability of your Pokemon, and makes it so that you need to play a much different, strategic game.

So, how do we do something like this with Armada?

List Building:

When signing up each player must pick a faction as well as 6 commanders from that faction.  Each player must also select 4 generic squadrons, as well as 4 unique squadrons corresponding to the generics.  At the start of each game, players will simultaneously reveal a 400 point list built utilizing only ships and the available squadrons / upgrade cards, and then play a game with that revealed list.

The League begins with the 6 commanders selected, 4 of each generic squadron selected, 1 of each unique squadron selected, and 1 of each non-commander upgrade available for list building.  At the end of each game, if a squadron is destroyed, or if a ship with an upgrade equipped to it is destroyed, that squadron or upgrade is removed from the available list.  Also at the end of the game, any commander upgrade not destroyed is "locked" and cannot be used again during the league.  Locked commanders will be available during the playoffs.

Banned Cards:

Effectively this means that all upgrades are "unique" upgrades.  You'll only be able to field a given upgrade on one ship, and if it's destroyed it's gone forever. 

Also for squadrons as an example:  If you pick X-Wings, then you can pick either Biggs, Luke, Wedge or Rogue Squadron as your corresponding unique.  If you want Jendon, then I hope you enjoy the 4 Lambda Shuttles he ships with.  

League Makeup:

Players will be divided into Divisions of 7 players each*.  Each player will play 1 game with each player in their division.   At the end of the Divisional Stage, there will be a short elimination tournament consisting of the top player in each Division, plus Wild Cards as needed.  

This means 6 games, plus the playoffs.  *If we have less than the required number of players in a division or divisions, we'll pair up players to play twice.  They playoffs will be short and sweet.  I'm thinking 6 weeks to schedule 6 games.

Going to open the league to both TTS and Vassal gamers, who will be in their own Divisions, so be sure to specify when you sign up!

Special Rules:  

New Objective:  CHAOS BRAWL
There is only one objective that will be played, and that objective is:

Chaos Brawl
Setup:  Place obstacles as normal, removing the station and adding 2 additional debris fields.

Deployment:  The first player must deploy their flagship, beyond distance 5 of either player's edges, and beyond distance 5 of the edges of the setup area.  Then, starting with the second player, deploy ships and squadrons as normal.  Squadrons cannot be deployed within distance 3 of first player's flagship.

End of Game:  Instead of normal tournament scoring, calculate scores as explained below.

Each Player receives:
+1 Tournament Point:  1-59 Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed
+2 Tournament Point:  60-139 Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed
+3 Tournament Point:  140-219 Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed
+4 Tournament Point:  220-299 Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed
+5 Tournament Point:  300+ Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed
+6 Tournament Point: Opponent Tabled

The player with the higher score receives +3 Tournament Points for the Win, or in the event of a tied score, +1 point will be given to each player.
Mercy Mission's point totals count toward Opponent's Fleet Points Destroyed.

So maximum points scorable in a single game would be 14 - either a double tabling (and thus a tie) or a Table vs 300+ win (9-5).  This is to encourage combat and the destruction of upgrade cards and squadrons.  Also so I don't have to figure out how objectives work within the Nuzlocke.

That's it.  Don't think I'm missing anything?  Pop onto our Discord if you have any questions:

Important Links:

Signup Here

Thursday, August 26, 2021

The Sum of All Things

BIG ol' title there, huh (pun intended)?  Let's hit a few major points in no certain order (minor NSFW bleeped words below, so, uh, if you have kids, watch out there).

Friday, July 30, 2021

FUNDAMENTALS OF TACTICS - GiledPallaeon Guest Post

Hey guys, John here to let you know we brought back GP to write a longer article about some fundamental tactics of the game and thinking and.... you know what, i'll just let him take it from here, ha!  See you soon from us all...

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Un-named Armada Podcast 41: waves 5 and 6 retrospection

Sunday, July 11, 2021

Highlander Format! Games Start July 24th!

After the success of Whos the Bossk, its time for another wacky BIG tournament! Hit the jump for the details on Highlander!

Send me a picture of you in this costume and I'll give you a dollar

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Eric updates 6/22

 Updated all the following Separatist articles now that wave 10 is completely done.:

  • Kraken. Overhauled a lot of the ships and fleetbuilding. He's still very flexible in terms of what you build with him but he definitely likes the Providence.
  • Admiral Trench. Added Nova Defiant Recusant.
  • General Grievous. Added Gilded Aegis Recusant.
  • Providence. Updated with Shu Mai.\

Minor upkeep for other articles (like the Hardcell and Munificent) where nothing major was changed, just a little word cleanup.

Separatist ship review: Providence-class Dreadnought

The first release of wave 10 (in the States anyways), the Providence-class Dreadnought offers the Separatists a dedicated multi-role flagship.

It also kinda looks like a long-necked turtle.
I can't be the only one who thinks it looks like a long-necked turtle, right?

A pair of Providence-class Dreadnoughts on the move.

I promise I'm done talking about turtles, but for real: it looks like a turtle.

Still not a fan of the new card layouts but we'll have some fun alternates below.

Separatist commander review: General Grievous

 General Grievous will be the first of our wave 10 commander reviews.

And he's already tired of listening to other people talking.

"So far no General Kenobi memes, things are looking up!"

Separatist commander review: Admiral Trench

Sorry for the delay on getting this article out - I've been busy with a massive garden upgrade project involving 150 cubic feet of soil, Mother's Day, and my wife's birthday. Not a lot of downtime to type out an article about Spider-Man Admiral Trench.

Fine, fine, have it your way.

Separatist commander review: Kraken

On to Separatist commander article number two: Kraken. I know I've got a good image around here somewhere...


Friday, June 18, 2021

Separatist commander review: TF-1726

I don't have a clever intro for TF-1726. He sure is a Star Wars character, all right.

Separatist requisitions department: "Yes, I want that Speak-and-Spell Ninja Turtles garbage can wearing a trucker hat that points at stuff."

Acclamator Ahoy!

The transport ship that launched the Clone Wars, the Acclamator is the GAR medium base, and it's going to be strongly prevalent throughout your lists for waves to come.

Begun, this article has

Clone Officers

The way you're going to distinguish your ships from one another, these specific clone officers all look so different from each other in how they interact that they.... wait, let me start again.  GAR Officers!

As soon as I figure out which one this is, you're in trouble.

GAR Specific Upgrades

With the advent of the new factions, we've decided to break apart our faction-specific upgrades into their own posts.  No sense having Rebel boarding teams clogging up the boarding teams article, especially for Eric to write about how he thinks of Cham, right? Enjoy the GAR specific (non-officer) upgrades below.

Git em, boys!

Pelta and Tarkin and Yularen OH MY!

So the GAR Pelta dropped today in the US. Along with a new Tarkin, Yularen, and some upgrade cards. Perhaps you'd like to read my thoughts on all of those?  I also updated the charger article yesterday (and Acclamator today) to pull a few links that weren't just bad versions of what the Pelta was doing (and update a few builds).

Anyways take a look!

catch all

Continuing on today, here's all the remaining GAR-based upgrades (which have been largely included into builds and the articles already; I'll do a quick review these upcoming weeks but I'm outta town tomorrow, so.... soon)

I also updated the charger builds and killed one of the ones that's been replaced entirely by the Pelta.

2 Pelta 2 Furious!

This is our second Pelta article, so prepare for the arrival of Ludacris and no Vin Diesel (apparently Vin wasn't part of the Republic). If you're looking for the REBEL PELTA, it's linked in that all-capitals bit right there. For the rest of us, set your wings to closed and hit the jump!

Gotta go..... well, speed 2 I guess.

You'll Love Yularen

Alright, time to keep writing articles and time to.... what's this? An admiral or ship I can't just copy paste part of my article from? I have to do all the work myself? How will I survive this! Hit the jump for a breakdown of the totally very important I have seen many episodes Wullf Yularen!

It's like if my grandpa was suddenly working for an evil Empire. Or at this point, my dad.

Time for Tarkin

Now a better man than I would find a photoshopped version of young Tarkin for this article, or make a joke about this being the second Tarkin article, or a Daniel/the cooler Daniel meme reference. I am not that man.  Hit the jump for a breakdown of GAR Tarkin!

I've got the fuzzy slippers for YOU

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Charger Coming In!

I knew those negotiations with the Trade Federation were going to be short! It's the Consular Class Cruiser article!

I wasn't even supposed to be here today!

Separatist commander review: Mar Tuuk

There are many contenders but the owner of the most punchable Separatist face has officially entered the building: give it up for Mar Tuuk!

Gotta add those nerdy little goggles and dumb hat to take that punchability up a few notches.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Separatist ship review: Recusant-class Destroyer

Breaking with normal Separatist naming conventions that are usually about wealth or shipping, the Recusant is named for "a person who refuses to submit to an authority or to comply with a regulation." Which makes sense when you consider the Separatists are refusing to submit to the Republic, but makes no sense when you consider that the Separatists are a merchant bureaucracy full of regulations they insist be followed to the letter. A not-fully-thought-through name? In my Star Wars? It's more likely than you think. Anyways, on to the Recusant-class Destroyer!

It's a giant robot space rat on a rocket stick.
On a side note, AMG can't seem to post a decent card scan of the ship they're selling and it makes me sad. Thanks to Ryan Kingston and Petersaber for slapping something together for the community.

Obstacle deployment: asteroids do not concern me, admiral!

I've been putting this one off for a while, but let's get to some deployment articles! First and foremost, let's talk about the first deployment step, the obstacle deployment step. I've found it's not uncommon for newer players to not really appreciate how much of an effect obstacle placement can have on the game and I'd like to remedy that. In short, asteroids may not concern Darth Vader, but they concern the rest of us.

If you're looking for the newer Rebellion in the Rim obstacles, check out this other article.

Turns out Sith Lords are not good bosses

Sunday, June 13, 2021

john 6/13 updates

I fixed the link issues in the Rebel squadrons grouping (don't just copy-paste kids), and updated the following articles for wave 10:

Starhawk: Flak Guns/DBY-427 combo is pretty good with a salvo build! Add on Local Fire for more fun!  And PDIC for squad protection!

MC75: See the Starhawk entry

HMC80: See the above entries

Acclamator: use wave 10 stuff in wave 9? Well I CAN'T BELIEVE IT

MC75: Your Big New Friend!

Well, it took a bit of time, but finally, it's MC75 time.  Bring the funk, bring the noise, bring the fight!
He came to fight, you know

H1MC80: Space Hoagie of DOOOOOOM!

I had said before that I got into this game to play with squadrons.  And that is a mostly true statement.  However, there was one other ship that I always loved watching in the Original Trilogy.  It had power, it had command, it represented for me the powerhouse of the Alliance.  Admiral Ackbar led from its bridge; it's the MC80.
It looks like a sandwich.  An ANGRY sandwich!

There's a Starhawk, Waiting in the Sky.....

Finally fresh off the boat, it's the newest and biggest Rebel ship.  And while some may think of it as the ugly duckling of the Rebel fleet, the Starhawk is much more of a beautiful swan, ready to spread its wings and fly!  Hit the jump to see how to add this beautiful bird of prey to your arsenal!
Eric and I have been playing a good amount of Wingspan recently, so strap in for these

Friday, June 11, 2021

John Updates 6/11

The Venator upgrades have been added in; Hot Landing posted below (SPHAT was in there already).  And I added the Venator Officers to the....GAR officer article, easy peasy.

Those droids should be carrying a plate of glass, maybe have a fruit stand nearby....

Hot Landing is the Fleet Command that comes in the Venator box, and it is.... a card! It's a way of giving all your Jedi Grit, and that's... something! And if a Jedi dies near a ship, (that Jedi that costs a minimum of 17 points), you can decide to raid it with your choice! Huh? Huh?!

Look, I want to like this card.  If your squadron plan involves generic Deltas and not Anakin this is not the WORST card I've seen. What that squadron plan is, of course, well....good luck.  Hot Landing lets you get SOME benefit to when your Deltas die (and you want it for Deltas, not just adding another 3 points onto Luminara or Plo alone.  You want multiple chances to get raid tokens) but it's 3 extra points on a squishy squadron that hits like a truck and dies like a fly in a spiderweb.  It gives your opponent raid, but I'm not sure how that applies to you winning the game; preventing your opponent from doing a command that they may have a token for already is.... A plan? What does raiding your opponent do for you when your 17-26 point squadron dying isn't somehow worse for you?

If you put a gun to my head and said I need to find a way to do this; hit your tokenless opponent's carrier with Deltas.  Then when they die, raid it for squadrons.  How this wins you the game (and prevents him from GETTING a squadron token to clear the raid), I'm sure you'll figure out.

It's useless currently in CIS as they have no Adept squadrons (future proofing).  For GAR, if you can find a way to leverage this successfully repeatedly against various opponents of different skill levels feel free to let me know.  Until then, go choose Mercy Mission instead.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Blissfully Ignorant Gaming!

So as I'm SURE it's made the rounds on all the important news sites (there was a Washington Post article I swear, but paywall, so....), Eric and I have joined forces with the Steel Strategy guys to form Blissfully Ignorant Gaming!

It's dot com!

So what is it? It's the unification of all 5 of us into one blog conglomerate.  Conblogerate, if you will (I wouldn't, woof).  We realized we all like games in some fashion, and we couldn't agree on which blog was going to eat the other one in name and "brought to you by" etc, so we made a new website.  It's how our media empire has joined together in a royal alliance/marriage.  I believe we also promised Eric's son to the 4th duchess of Pittsburgh, but Biggs still has to finalize the deal with the traditional cheesesteak handshake.

CGYSO will still exist; I have ships to update and officers to write, but more importantly I was able to unpack all my stuff.  Sunday is looking good though!  But Eric and I (and the new 3, and possibly more? STAY TUNED DOT DOT DOT) will still do our Armada blogging here.  Any board gaming, generic minis gaming, board gaming, etc etc etc will be on the other site.  Which, has a blog! And I think I'm taking it over? Not sure about what I've volunteered for THERE.  Stay tuned for that, too.

What of the Unnamed Armada Podcast? Still existent, just that we're focusing on more generic gaming and gaming of all types over at Blissfully Ignorant (and the associated Blissfully Ignorant Gaming Podcast!). Anyways, come check us out!

Listen as Biggs and I try to get everyone else interested in blaseball....

Monday, June 7, 2021

Separatist Officers

Welcome to the Separatist officers article! Let's talk about who gets to ride around in the robot space donuts, shall we?

Makes perfect sense.

Recusant Separatist Officers Added to the Separatist Officers article

Three newcomers to the Separatist Officers article, just in time for the Recusant article coming... hopefully soon. Also, I changed the upgrades index a bit: now the faction-specific upgrade articles are grouped together. So if you want to look at Rebel officers and Rebel-specific upgrades, they're under the "Rebels" header instead of one in the "officers" group and one in the "faction-specific upgrades" group.

Saturday, June 5, 2021

One-Stop Shop for Sunday Links!

I finished the Venator article (obviously below), but I also added Eric's Thermals breakdown to the GAR upgrades and hey, why not SPHA-Ts too?

I need to update a lot of the old articles, especially: the Acclamator, MC75, Starhawk, and HMC80 for sure, with all the Salvo tech available and all now.  It's in progress for sure!

Venator Vidi Vici!

The main reason all you wanted to fly the GAR, and the backbone of your fleet, it's time for the arrowheadiest of triangles, it's the Venator!

More lasers! More pew pew! More squadrons!

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Providence article updated

Nothing major in the Providence article update, I just wanted to add in the new Flak Guns and DBYs now that they're released with the Venator. One new build for the Providence focusing on Flak Guns salvo. This brings us up to a Lucid Voice Carrier Providence salvo build and a Flak Guns DBYs Dreadnought Providence salvo build. They're distinct enough that it'll really depend on your fleet as to which you think you'd prefer.

Monday, May 31, 2021

DBY Updated and Added!

Copy-pasted below:

They look pointier than your standard turbolaser, so you can tell they're for salvos

Coming off the wave 10 presses, it's DBY-827 (henceforth DBYs).  You can turn any salvo attack dice to 1 with a crit.  So, yes, that DOES mean my black dice can flip into a hit/crit with it. And ain't THAT mean.

They pair GREAT with Flak Guns but moreso, they pair best with 2 approaches.  First, you're likely going to want Local Fire Control to ensure a second salvo on your ship (and the ability to use both!). You want LFC because if your opponent rolls or produces an accuracy and locks down your single salvo token, you're going to feel slightly silly when you spent 6 points (with Flak Guns and DBYs) to sit around with.  I also feel you want the second salvo in order to ensure that the CR90 firing on you has to consider potentially taking 2 salvo shots in return, especially if I can change the black dice coming at it into a hit/crit each time.  Those evades burn out fast in that case.

The second thing you're going to want is a focus on applying a lot of damage, more than focused damage into one hullzone.  This is me saying "I'm not sure I would pair this with XI7s if you have a 2 turbolaser ship" because I think you want them burning their tokens even harder and faster to neutralize the damage coming back at them.  The obviously strongest use of this card is to change a black dice to a hit/crit, but sometimes it might be just a blue/red dice salvo.  Because they're taking this damage (from attacking you; it's a salvo remember?) and then moving away, you're going to want to fire on them again, but you can't guarantee what hullzone they're taking the damage on and then exposing to you.  If you keep the damage from the salvo XI7'ed into that same hullzone, I HIGHLY doubt a good opponent is going to try to leave that hullzone exposed to you at the end of their movement if they have any say about it.  So pair it with a different turbolaser; and even more importantly pair it with ships that are just trying to pour more and more damage into a ship (don't use XI7s on other ships with it either, haha!).  It does go great with Intel Officer, though, that's for sure.  Nothing as rude as me firing back for ~4 damage on YOUR turn and me Intelling that token you were about to use for it.  Remember your Intel Officer timing window, though (end of step 2, before you do anything else in step 3)!

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Eric article updates 5/30


I updated few articles hot on the heels of wave 10 releases. Everything got a bit of minor editing, hyperlink adding to articles that showed up later, etc. In addition:

  • Interdictor article updated with revised Back Atcha, Buddy salvo build replacing Disposable Capacitors with Flak Guns (similar effect but better and lasts all game). Mention of Point Defense Ion Cannons.
  • Count Dooku article updated to include the B2 Rocket Troopers/BORT droids, which allow for a "tons of raid tokens" fleet.
  • Kraken article updated to mention Providence-class Dreadnoughts and Swivel-Mount Batteries on Munificents.
  • Hardcell article updated in a few places:
    • Beast of Burden can work on itself (just clarifying for rules, but spending an evade to ready your brace can be pretty handy in the right circumstances for example).
    • Builds updated with new officers, particularly Tikkes.
    • Some more discussion on external dice fixing with the Battle Refit and the possibility of running it with no upgrades at all.
  • Munificent article has some minor updates. 
    • Added new use of Flag Bridge for Jedi Hostage.
    • Ion cannon discussion enhanced a bit and added Point Defense Ion Cannon as an option.
    • Star Frigate expanded a bit with the introduction of Thermal Shields, which works well for the Star Frigate.
  • Imperial-class Star Destroyer article updated :
    • Some salvo builds updated by the Flak guns + DBY-827 Heavy Turbolasers combo.
    • Point Defense Ion Cannons added where appropriate as well.

I'm starting to refer to the DBY-827 Heavy Turbolasers in some of my articles and linking to the turbolaser article. John's got his hands full and hasn't updated the article yet but I'm sure it'll get added in a few days. In the meantime, it's this:

Imperial ship review: Imperial-class Star Destroyer

Let's talk about the first Imperial battleship seen in all of Star Wars, the Imperial-class Star Destroyer. With wave 7 including two new chassis for this iconic ship, this article will be covering all four of the available options and so is going to get rather lengthy, so settle in someplace comfortable!

TIE Fighter squadrons not included (but recommended!)

Separatist ship review: Munificent-class frigate

The first serious Separatist warship we'll be discussing is the Munificent-class frigate. It's a dependable scrappy and adaptable little medium-based ship that operates very differently from every other medium-based ship in the game.

Plus it looks neat.

Separatist ship review: Hardcell transport

The first small ship for the Separatists is the Hardcell Transport, a support-oriented vessel that can play helper robot or even act as fire support.

Seen here shooting at... something. Something that's making them explode.

Separatist commander review: Count Dooku

 Let's get rolling on Separatist commanders with Count Dooku.

Me too, buddy. Me too.

Imperial ship review: Interdictor cruiser

We've made it to wave 4! I mean to be fair, waves 3 and 4 are basically the exact same wave because they came out together, but... technically it's wave 4!

Oh hello there, I didn't notice you getting choke-slammed out of hyperspace!

Friday, May 28, 2021

Where's my Ven Article, John?

So it's sure 3 pm when this published, right? And you're asking yourself "why is John waiting on content? Is it because he hates me?" I mean, probably not, but if you want to think that, who am I to stop you?

Anyways, the real REASON is that I wrote the Pelta article first way back when we thought these were all coming out in April (sad laughter).  Then I hit the Pelta commanders (Side note: no Pelta until it's in my hands. Sorry bros and bro-ettes)! Things were looking great! So I'm ready for June (stupid boat in the stupid canal). I got the other 2 commanders together (as i'm sure you've seen already), and then I intended to write that Venator article (and update the other stuff).

And then I moved in with my fiancĂ©e and hit a wall of "pack and unpack all your stuff." I'm currently in UNPACK mode, but I still have a bunch of boxes to hit.  And then clean out my old apartment to get a security deposit back this weekend, and hang out with friends.  So, uh, I'ma hit it next week? Along with a few commander updates (Bail for sure, Obi very likely), and updates to the charger that are basically "this is a Pelta now instead of this build." Along with the updates about all the upgrades (I'm grabbing my Venators TOMORROW, so I honestly don't even know what upgrades I'm getting with them, haha!)

So it's coming, I promise. Just don't expect it Monday.  Give me a week and I'll definitely be either unpacked enough to do it or I'll kill my sleep schedule even more to make sure it's done.

The Power of Plo Koon

One commander I personally am very excited about in Wave 10 is one of the coolest Star Wars characters, who is also apparently super important in the Clone Wars series. He's so important they made him into a card before the Clone Wars even existed and they've now banned him, so good riddance Strategic Adviser.  Anyways it's Plo Koon!

What's up, Jabberwock?

Flak Guns added to Offensive Retrofits

Figured I'd get my contribution out of the way early given the Venator is dropping today. John's gonna have his hands full, though, so be patient for Republic content please. We'll be making changes to older articles affected by new options. For example, I updated the Flag Bridge entry in the offensive retrofits article (due to the new fleet commands) in addition to adding the below entry for Flak Guns.

Without further ado, it's time for Flak Guns!

In a universe where one-man fighters keep blowing important things up, making flak guns optional feels dumb.

The Ever Present Luminarticle!

Luminous articles are we writing, not this...crude matter. Let's get to talking about one of the most interesting commanders/DJs from the wave, Luminara Unduli.

About to drop the mic after she drops your ship

Friday, May 7, 2021

Who's the Bossk Followup!

As several of you know, I've been putting on a tournament.   As round 3 begins, I thought I'd share a few life lessons both from running a tournament and from running this Who's the Bossk tournament.  If you ever end up wanting to run it in real life, feel free to use me as a guide for doing so.  I'll throw it below the fold for anyone not interested.

Angry lizard is angry

Quick Update

I updated the GAR squadrons article for a few more groups/plans.  Nothing major and if you've been playing a bit I'm sure you've already stumbled onto these groups.  My other articles are in progress, as usual.

Friday, April 30, 2021

Invisible Hand upgrades added, articles updated

I've updated the Separatist-specific upgrades article and the Separatist officers article with new content from the Invisible Hand/Providence pack. This includes the two new fleet commands (Hot Garbage Landing and Jedi Hostage), Thermal Shields, BORT the rocket droid, TI-99, and Tikkes. Toot toot it's time to board the Tickles Token Train!

"I live underwater, have no idea what a train is, and my name isn't Tickles."
"Glad to have you on the train, Tickles."
The ion cannons article now has Point Defense Ion Cannons too. Finally, don't forget to catch John's recent article on some early wave 10 rules issues.

Coming up in the next week or so I hope to release the Admiral Trench and General Grievous articles as well as the Providence article itself. After that will be updates to earlier Separatist articles now that there's new toys for them to play with. We'll be doing this as wave 10 slowly arrives in the US with everything Republic coming out in May and the Recusant showing up sometime in June (hopefully early June).

Ion cannon upgrades: she blinded me with science!

Time to finish off our weapon upgrade reviews with the ion cannons!

Now you too can make little "blep blep" noises.

Separatist-specific upgrades

We're trying something new with the release of Clone Wars and that is separating out all the non-officer upgrades that are only available for a specific faction into a separate article. Previously, we left those options in the relevant article (so the Darth Vader boarding team is in the boarding teams article, for example), but with 4 factions now available, our concern is that upgrades that can only be taken by one or two factions will eventually come to clog up the articles covering upgrades available to everyone and should have their own separate repositories. We've already done this with officers, now we're expanding it to an article for (faction) officers and (faction) other upgrades.

If there's an upgrade available to multiple, but not all, factions then we'll cover that upgrade separately in different articles. For example, Swivel-Mount Batteries is available only to Clone Wars factions so we'll have a writeup for it in the Separatist article (right here) and the Republic article, perhaps with differing opinions given both difference in author opinion as well as difference in how a specific faction can make use of that upgrade.

I guess what I'm trying to say is "welcome to Robot Land!"

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Wave Ten Rulings!

Eric and I are aware we have ship articles and commander articles to do, but until we have product in hand we're going to wait.  Easier to get good pictures that way of the upgrade cards instead of the "definitely not filmed in the theater" copy of the latest Avengers movie (we get the good scans for you guys!).  But I do want to get into 3 specific rules interactions that keep popping up on the Discords (speaking of, join us there!).  Eric is out with his wife and son today, so grab your water wings, John is wading into rules discussions!

Eric and me looking for our wave 10 stuff

Friday, April 16, 2021

Public service announcement: list and ship build critiques and upcoming wave 10

A short update and a request on behalf of John and me: please don't ask us to critique your ship builds or fleet lists. It's not that we don't care - honestly, we're flattered at how much trust the community has in us. It's that we just don't have the time to make it a thing we open the floodgates to in addition to running the blog, enjoying our other hobbies, and living our regular lives. There's also the practical matter of we need a lot of information to really make a good critique, such as how competitive your meta is, what types of fleets are popular, what models and upgrades you own, what the rest of your fleet is like, what types of things you're comfortable running at this point, etc. etc.

In short, we're flattered you trust us with your fleets but we don't reliably have the time to help. If you would like input on your fleet lists/ship builds, I'd recommend the Star Wars Armada subreddit, the Armada Facebook group, or the Steel Strategy discord server.

"I value you as a coworker, Fish Todd, but I'm not reviewing any more fleet lists for you. So please put that printout away and get back to work."

We do update our example ship builds in articles periodically: usually when some new upgrade has been released that shakes things up or we play with/against some options we previously hadn't considered and they're better than expected. That said, they are starting points that are fairly agnostic towards commander choice so I don't want anyone to consider them the absolute be-all end-all: please play around with your options and find something that works for you and your specific fleet!

In terms of wave 10 and the future here at CGYSO: we don't entirely know when everything is actually going to reach us. We've been getting lots of conflicting information on release dates so it's a big question mark at this point. Once we have the plastic spaceships in our grubby mitts we'll be releasing new articles like usual. We had a big backlog ready to go for wave 9 but it meant a flurry of activity here initially followed by a slow process of updating to version 1.5 across the blog. For wave 10 I expect we'll have regular updates here and there for around a month as we get caught up and then filling in some backlog due to new upgrades changing options from earlier.

As always, thanks for reading!