PDA

View Full Version : First game of AI!



Kahadras
09-09-2007, 17:59
Played my first game of AI today! I took my 4 Thunderbolts up against 6 Ork fightas. I don't think I did too badly. I planed to hit the Ork player at long range with my Skystrikes and lazcannon which caught him off guard as he expected me to charge in like some noob. I got into a perfect position to attack (he had his lead plane in range and I had three Thunderbolts in long range of three of his Fightas) and things went a bit pearshape. He got off 4 shots and did a point of damage. I launched 6 sky strikes (did nothing) and fire 3 lazcannon (1 measly point of damage). I was a bit annoyed at this point.

Things then went down hill. I pulled off a few good maneuvers but fluffed up the last bit and got a plane shot down (3 Ork Fightas in close range = 1 dead Thunderbolt). I managed to down a Fighta with a lucky Skystrike hit (6 to hit 6 to kill). Things then got even worse as I lost a second Thunderbolt losing my entire lead flight.

There was a bit of manuevering and ineffective shooting followed by a climatic last engagement. I shot down a Fighta then lost my third Thunderbolt to a fluky medium range shot at a different alititude (my opponant rolled 2 6's followed by 2 5's). I shot down one more Fighta before being forced to disengage.

Overall it was quite good fun and I certainly gave my opponant a fight (I was the longest game he had played). I was a bit annoyed by my luck though. I was hoping to get at least one of his fightas in the first pass but had a Thunderbolt damaged for very little in return. Once the dogfight erupted it was very difficult for me to get into a good firing position. He used his numbers quite well to give him the best chance of being able to hit me while I struggled to make much impact (especialy after losing my first Thunderbolt). The other major dissapointment was the last turn with my opponant being really lucky to down my third Thunderbolt.

Overall I though it went OK but a few rules annoyed me. The blanket 5's to hit really hurt me more than the Orks and the fact that Orks do really well in close range made it easier for him to get into the best firing positions (a couple of turns I found that I'd maneuvered to close or to far away to get a medium range shot).

The other thing was the tactical advantage that having more planes gives you. All the way through I couldn't help feeling that Battletech handled the same style of movement much better. The real kicker was when I was down to three planes and won the initative. Basicaly it made it obvious what I was going to do that turn and he easily managed to avoid the majority of my firepower.

Still it was only my first game so here's hoping that the second goes a bit better. My planning and movement was OK but I just need to be a bit more careful about ranges and maybe a bit luckier on the dice.

Kahadras

Darnok
09-09-2007, 19:08
Sounds like a bit of bad luck.

The main lection I got after my first few games was: get a feeling of the movement, and of how the manoeuvre cards modify it. You need to know for sure were you will be after your move, and I found that quite tricky at the beginning.

In addition to that you will find that Tunderbolts can down a fighter in one round of shooting - if they are a bit lucky. If you use the advanced rules, always go for a sustained burst to increase your chance of a kill in one go.

Don't give up, you'll enjoy the game. :)

neXus6
09-09-2007, 19:57
After a month i've still not had a game. :(
Forgeworld have kindly forgotten to send me my Thunderbolts. :p

Ah well i shall still hold out hope, everything a read makes me what to play even more. :D

Lt. Co Steel
09-09-2007, 21:02
Ah well, this time the gods of dice were looking the other way this time, but well done for you first game, i try to forget my first game;).




Huzzar! my Mauraders have arrived!!!!!!

Tyra_Nid
10-09-2007, 01:35
Sounds fun! I think you learnt the first valuable rule of AI:
Luck is highly significant! Since there are so few dice being rolled, and they generally need high numbers, you can be a brilliant commander and deftly move your planes into perfect positions... and then do absolutely nothing ;)
Just roll with it, it is the style of the game. Play some more and your luck will hopefully balance out!

Now Ill see if I can give you some hints from an Imperial point of view (and having played with both forces):


I planed to hit the Ork player at long range with my Skystrikes and lazcannon [sic]

Good move. Thats what you should be doing in the initial stage. With luck you can take down one or two in the initial round and even out the numbers game a bit more.


the fact that Orks do really well in close range made it easier for him to get into the best firing positions (a couple of turns I found that I'd maneuvered to close or to far away to get a medium range shot).

Thats one of the advantages of having an optimal range band of 0-6. Same with Eldar and Tau. Makes it alot easier to get into because you dont have to judge the distance so much. Once you play a bit more you will get better and anticipating and judging the distance, and getting into the magic 6-12 band. I played with Orks last night and a few times I automatically put them in 6-12 rather than 0-6 accidentally.


The other thing was the tactical advantage that having more planes gives you. The real kicker was when I was down to three planes and won the initative. Basicaly it made it obvious what I was going to do that turn and he easily managed to avoid the majority of my firepower.

Sucks, doesnt it? :p
Outnumbering is a huge component in this game. With Imperials, you really have to decide if you want to beef up your planes with skystrikes, or take that extra 1-2 planes to even the balance a little. Often when you become severely outnumbered, the game goes downhill quickly.

However, thats the Orks biggest advantage! A lot of cheap, not-too-bad-but-not-brilliant planes. To win, you will need to make use of the Imperial strengths against Orks:

-Engage at long range initially (you seem to have that down)
-The magic 6-12 range band. Practice it! 8 shots from Big Shootas seems good, but I would much rather have some Quaddies and a Las (and a Skystrike too!). That will get you out of the Orks lethal band as well (and maybe make the Ork player think twice about expending a point of ammo).
-Pilot skill: You have better skilled pilots, make use of it. Extra ammo for Autos (at least once per game). Yo-Yoing can be handy too, and nothing to lose by trying for it.
-Thrust: Orks have much less finesse, and really need to play the Altitude-Change game to adjust their speed properly, which also means they will often be at the wrong alt to target you. Aim to finish your move at Sp4, that will give you flexibility to race up to Sp6 or slow down to Sp2 (and possibly Sp1 with skill check). At an opportune time, cut your speed + yoyo and watch the fightas behind you overshoot into your guns!

Anyway, those are the tips that occur to me off the top of my head now, hope they are handy!

Kahadras
10-09-2007, 20:08
Sucks, doesnt it?


Yeah and I don't really see why you should gain such a massive advantage if you play Orks or Chaos. The Imperium doesn't have such a massive technological edge that it negates the fact that you are pretty much going to be outmaneuvered on every turn (at least that's how it feels to me).

Personaly I would be happier with the bigger force getting the bonus to initative and that being the end of it. From the games that I've seen (four or five) and taken part in (one) the Orks have consistantly done better than the Imperium. My three kills were the highest that anybody managed when being out numbered.

I don't know if anybody else has had the same problem. We're all fairly new to the game at our club but the Orks player has done significantly better so far. I'm not discouraged from playing more games (in fact I quite enjoyed the game I was in and do like challenges) but I did seemingly find it a lot harder than the Ork player.

Kahadras

Darnok
10-09-2007, 20:36
That is just the fact that Orks need less experience to be used than the Imperium or Eldar. Having more planes on the board and having your firepower massed in short range makes it much simpler to score a kill than using manoeuvres and speed. I have only experiences with Eldar, but they can do really cool stuff - but as a player you have to know how to use that. What good are all the fancy manoeuvres if they don't bring the enemy to where you want him to have? And for that you need experience on the field.

Kahadras
10-09-2007, 21:27
And for that you need experience on the field

I think that's the kicker. I had a pretty good plan during my first game but half of it got blown to hell just by the fact that my opponant had more planes than me which was just a tad annoying. Especialy when I feel that Ork planes aren't that bad to begin with.

One or two good tricks I learnt were start high and fairly slow. If your opponant is rushing in (as the Ork player did) hit the brakes. This should set you up for a long range pop at them on turn two. Once you've had your long range shot power dive and pour on the speed. Before my opponant realised it I managed to get one of my flights clean away without him having a single shot at them.

Keep all of your stuff togther. I broke up my flight into two units of two. They ended up getting seperated and one flight ended up getting chewed up by five Fightas before my other unit could arrive in support.

Don't be afraid to take a shot at a different alititude. My opponant told me I was a fool for having a pop at long range with my Thunderbolt but was left sweating buckets after a Skystrike and a lazcannon both hit (I then rolled two 1's to damage :()

Kahadras

HarkonGreywolf
10-09-2007, 23:12
Hiya,
Yeah luck, good and bad, plays a part in any game where you're rolling dice!
But you can make your own luck! Or at least influence it a little. ;)

I play Orks and for the first few games I did seem to have it easier than my opponents, but that's purely because Orks are a "blunt instrument" you get up close and hit 'em with everything! Sooner or later you'll hit something and do some damage! LOL

However, once your opponent gets the measure of you (as an Ork) it's then difficult to regain that "upper hand".
In fact after the first few games my opponent has managed to draw or beat me every time!

Hmmm, hadn't thought about that but I haven't won for ages!

The Orks don't have that manoevrability to play with any finesse and have basically to stick the the "air-charge" and Dakka Dakka everything in range/sight. If your opponent knows that that is exactly what you'll do virtually every time, then of course he can prepare and strategise to counter your offence.

Keep playing, I'd say your first game was pretty close personally, given the dice luck etc.

HG

Kahadras
10-09-2007, 23:32
The Orks don't have that manoevrability to play with any finesse and have basically to stick the the "air-charge" and Dakka Dakka everything in range/sight.

The problem I found was the difficulty of finesse when your opponant is just as maneuverable (maneuverability = high) as you and can go faster as well. Once the dogfight started I just got mobbed.

I gonna have a sit down and plan some tactics before next week. One idea is to do some wild maneuvering after the first long/medium range engagement to try to get as far away from the Orks as possible then regroup to have another go. Could be risky but it may end up pulling his squadron in different directions. If he does go after a single plane then I can reform my other three and hit him at long/medium range again

Kahadras

Tyra_Nid
11-09-2007, 10:16
The problem I found was the difficulty of finesse when your opponant is just as maneuverable (maneuverability = high) as you and can go faster as well.

I think you are ignoring the very large advantage that extra thrust gives the Imperials! And the advantage of extra pilot-skill. They are both important.

Darnok
11-09-2007, 10:25
I think you are ignoring the very large advantage that extra thrust gives the Imperials! And the advantage of extra pilot-skill. They are both important.

Pilot skill belongs to the advanced rules, so you wouldn't use it in the first few games. From then on you're right. And your point about Thrust can't be stressed enough - the Nightwing with T3 plays quite different to everything with T2 and the Orks with T1 are at a real disadvantage.

Kahadras
11-09-2007, 10:58
I think you are ignoring the very large advantage that extra thrust gives the Imperials! And the advantage of extra pilot-skill. They are both important.

I really didn't find the extra thrust giving me much advantage in the game I played and the pilot skill really didn't come into it at all (the only advanced rule we used was sustained fire and neither of us got off any long bursts)

Kahadras

Nemoyo
11-09-2007, 11:49
I find thrust to be a major factor. Against Orks you know that they cannot climb and accelerate, if you can get them low then bleed off their speed, their options can drop pretty quickly.

Tyra_Nid
11-09-2007, 17:09
I really didn't find the extra thrust giving me much advantage in the game I played and the pilot skill really didn't come into it at all (the only advanced rule we used was sustained fire and neither of us got off any long bursts)

Yeah, it didnt give you advantage because you are new :p. But it is something you should definately consider and work on in the future, is the point we are making.

And even pilot skill for sustained burst helps, and when you start to use yo-yo that is extremely handy as well.

HarkonGreywolf
11-09-2007, 23:10
I agree entirely.
The Orks T1 makes my life a real pain once I get within range, as soon as I line up a few close shots......... Zzzzzoooommmm, they've got away again! LOL And I have very little chance of catching them.
The Orks really are a little bit of a one-trick pony in this game. Up close, overwhelm and win, or fail and lose! ;)
But it is a great game, the best in my opinion, win or lose, because it makes me think more than any other game!

HG

Lt. Co Steel
12-09-2007, 14:23
Thats what i like about AI, its all about the thinking and tactics without the "win despite what i do" races, which generally means that fights could go either way (minus unlucky dice and lack of experience of course;)).