View Full Version : Starting BFG

Lord Hjamlar
20-08-2006, 22:35
So I would like to start playing BFG... I've read some rules, I've been looking at the fleets (most of stats did tell me nth:cries: ) and I decided to choose one from those:
1) Tau
2) SM
3) Imperial Navy
Could u tell me more about them, what is useful in them, what are they strong and week points and give some basic rosters...

Thx for forthcoming help ;p


21-08-2006, 01:17
1) TauBest torpedoes in the game. Usually carry large amounts of torpedoes and attack craft. Ships are slow, but can concentrate lots of firepower in their front arc.

If you haven't seen the Forge World line of Tau ships, they're worth a look.

2) SMVery fast, heavily armored, undergunned. SM aren't a force made for fighting fleet battles - that's the Navy's job. SM ships are made for punching through planetary defences and getting their marines onto the ground. There is no pure SM fleet list either - they're a part of the Battlefleet Armageddon imperial navy list, though you could use that list to take all SM ships if you really wanted to. In general, that makes for a weak force.

3) Imperial NavyGood all-round force. Large amounts of ships mean you can tailor the fleet to almost any style. Nova cannon are one of the strongest weapons in the game, are carried by many imperial ships and are unique to the navy. Aside from nova cannon, most imperial ships are designed to have strong broadsides instead of strong frontal weaponry.

give some basic rosters...
For Tau: The core of your army should consist of Explorers, with Heroes and escorts as support. Merchants stink.

For Navy: The core of your force will consist of cruisers. Dictators and Dominators are both good. Tyrants and Lunars can hold their own, though Lunars do better in groups. Gothics kinda suck but look too cool to pass up on.

For Marines: Most people seem to think that strike cruisers work best in twos or threes instead of alone. SM ships have fewer turrets and shields than comparable ships of their class, so they're more fragile than their 6+ armor might suggest.

In general, as long as you have a decent amount of weapons batteries (for survival against eldar) and attack craft (for defense against enemy ordnance), you can play around and take whatever else you like.

21-08-2006, 03:11
the imperial and chaos fleets, being part of the starter set, are also the reference fleet for the game. they are also the only fleets with plastic cruisers. thus if you have any interests at all, i would start with imperial navy. the starter set is a great deal and a great buy for all the markers as well as the rule book.

the Imp Navy: jack of all traits, master or none

Tau: they are a carrier/missile based fleet. you'd be hard press to build any other kind with tau. as such, they are slow and ponderous.

SM: meant for upclose pounding. good with boarding. lacks long range weapons, which can be a detriment against some fleets (eldars and chaos in particular)

22-08-2006, 15:00
Imperial navy is a hard fleet to play. Its weapons and armour arrangement means that it can't really bring all its firepower to bear.

Its front armour is impressive but its only frontal armament are primarily the torpedoes which are sometime effective but are difficult to use and primarily area denial weapons (to force the opposing ships to turn this way or that way or to split up enemy vessels so that the imperial vessels can attack separated enemy vessels). This means that head-on attacks aren't that effective.

THe side broadsides are powerful but can't damage enemy vessels on their own. It takes a lot of skill to coordinate the torpedoes going in and then (hopefully) damaging the enemy and once that happens the Imperial forces then turn to bring their broadsides BUT in doing so they present their weaker side armour to the enemy as well.

The Imperial forces are slower then Chaos and not quite as maneuverable. If you're going to start a BFG fleet try the Chaos forces. As they're part of the original set there's alot of variety (in terms of ships) and tactics with chaos vessels makes more sense (always turning to present broadsides that are very, very effective).

Hope that helps.
p.s. I love the Imperial forces but had a big long learning curve until I finally got "it" but they're still tough to play.

Lord Hjamlar
22-08-2006, 16:51
Well the problem is that I don't want to play Chaos ;) So I suppose I'll buy the basic box, sell those Chaos cruisers and than try to play either with Imp. navy or with SM (I need a fleet for my SW)... And than I'll think about Tau... Any ideas on what to field in Imp. fleet... And one more question:
Those FW things are they usable, I mean Ramilies and so on... Do they work or they're just for fun...

Lord Hjamlar

23-08-2006, 05:37
Depends on what you want. Either a powerful cruiser force (heavy on beam weapons), a powerful ordnance force (carriers and torpedoes), or a mixed force.

Cobra Destroyers
Whatever you field always field a strong escort force, say at least 6 cobras to give you a quick reaction force. The prow torpedoes on them also helps to saturate the turrets of enemy vessels. The speed of the Cobras also helps to prevent enemy vessels from trying to get behind your fleet. The use of the torpedoes on the Cobras also helps to deny that blindside located at the rear of your fleet. Its major weakness is its weak armour. Sometimes having two squadrons of escorts are good (cheap and decent firepower) and enemies may dismiss them until they open up with 24 points of torp. ordnance. Two squadrons are also good because it means that when the enemy destroys one squadron at least you've still got another squadron able to protect your "6".

Firestorm Frigates
I don't find the Firestorm FF that useful. The short range means that this vessel gets shot out of the sky alot. Its firepower is weak and casualties to the squadron means that the ships/squadrons overall firepower declines quite quickly.

Sword FF
Much better then the Firestorm. A squadron of these FF is quite effective but like all escorts it dies quickly.

Dictator CV.
This is an effective class especially with the rewrites to the ordnance rules (no more running out of ammunition/fighters). Adequate broadsides, adequate torpedoes, improved number of turrets to fight off ordnance/fighter, and adequate number of fighters. I like the Dictator very much.

Dominator CA.
A really effective design. The Nova Cannon (especially with the rewrite to the rules - no more guessing) is potentially devastating but make sure you start off far enough from the enemy to get some turns of nova firing at enemy targets. The broadsides are the heaviest among the Imp. cruiser classes (short of Battlecruisers and grand cruisers). The broadsides of this class are comparable to some of the best fielded by Chaos cruisers. A must have. The only problem is that it lacks torpedoes so cannot contribute to the initial torpedo run but its broadsides are very desirable when the Imps. have to turn to cross the enemy T. Too bad you're only allowed a very limited number ( 1 per 750 pts).

Gothic class.
Pretty useless. The large number of lances are nice but not enough to generate some decent hits. At least has the torpedoes. Can add its weight to the initial torpedo run.

Tyrant class.
Good class but only at the close range. Its firepower at close range is comparable to Chaos cruisers but long range firepower is quite weak. Has torpedoes so good cruiser to have with other torp-armed cruisers.

Lunar class.
Average class. Combo of lance and weapons battery is adequate. Torp-armed so can contribute to initial torp-run.

Mars class.
Jack of all trades. Okay in most situations. Good fighter complement, nova cannon, but poor broadsides, but extremely long range lance (good) but downside is the small number of lances means you've got to be lucky to get a hit.

Adequate class. Adequate side broadsides (but still pretty unimpressive) but at least the weapons have an impressive long range.

As I rarely field BB's I cannot comment on their effectiveness.
Hope that helps.

23-08-2006, 15:45
Alll the above are true... but you can take Imperial Fleets in different directions. I have a fleet that is centered around launching tons of ordance, bombers, fighters, and torpedoes. Only one Nova in the bunch.

If you want you could start out building an Imperial Reserve Fleet using the Chaos rules - this lets you learn to play with a forgiving fleet and still be Imperial.

23-08-2006, 15:49
There's actually rules for the imperial reserve fleets in the armada supplement. :)

23-08-2006, 23:06
Yes this is true, largely consisting of normally chaos vessels I think.

24-08-2006, 01:54
The reserve fleet consists of Chaos-type vessels. They're a good fleet to try out tactics, fleet organization etc...The reserve fleet means that you've still got to use Imp ships and that's a good way of introducing yourself to the complexity of how to ship-handle Imp vessels.

It also has the advantage of making use of those chaos vessels in the box set and helps to keep the cost down as you can now use chaos and Imp ships together.

Never tried reserve chaos ships with Imp. ships. Makes for interesting tactics, the Imp ships plow ahead with the chaos ship component hanging back until the torpedoes go in and split the opposing fleet and then the reserve chaos ships, using their superior speed and maneuver turn and cross the enemy T and blast away with those awesome broadsides...

Good luck. Hjamlar. BFG is pretty fun to play.

24-08-2006, 03:47
BFG is great. I have a large Imperial Fleet, and it looks pretty darn impressive on the table.

I recommend the Imps, get the starter set, though, those 4 cruisers are an excellent basis for the rest of the fleet. Throw in some escorts and you're set. Don't underestimate their high front armor, it's great for making your advance towards the enemy fleet before opening up for a broadside.

Be sure to paint them all up nicely; they'll look awesome!

Lord Hjamlar
24-08-2006, 19:03
So what do u think about that:
- Ram Spike
- Admiral
- Special Torpedos

2 x 6 Cobra Class Destroyers

1 x 2 Cobra Claas Destoryers

2 x Dictator Class Cruiser
- Torpedo Bombers

1 x Dominator Class Cruiser

Does this list have any chances?

24-08-2006, 20:02
Cobra distribution is a bit odd, you might want to even that out, otherwise you'll have games where you roll a 9 ld for the 2 squadron and 6 ld's for the 6 squadrons....

24-08-2006, 23:57
I would move the ram spike off the Overlord. This is your command vessel, it is not something you will just throw away. Move that to one of the Dictators in my opinion.

25-08-2006, 01:04
Torpedo Bombers are mainly useful against Battleship-type vessels with tons of turrets or in conjunction with an attack by regular bombers. In a fleet this size, you won't be facing many battleships, and you don't have enough launch bay capacity to pull off a credible normal-bomber/torpedo-bomber combined attack.

Just take regular bombers and have them attack alongside your ships' standard torpedoes.

25-08-2006, 15:18
hey, I just managed to aquire a some imperial ships of my own and found Froggy's advise really helpful.

So here's a little 1000pt list from what i can work with.

Mars Class battel cruisr-admiral
2 luna class cruisers
dominator class cruiser
2 firestorm frigates.

25-08-2006, 16:19
Lord Hjamlar.
I agree with Robertsjf. The cobra destroyer squadron is sort of strange. Try it - it may work as the enemy may ignore it but the 2 Cobra destroyer squadron won't be able to generate enough ordnance nor firepower to make an appreciable damage to the enemy.

In total you've got around 1100 pts. The four cruisers aren't bad - the Overlord will be useful when your fleet engages into effective beam weapons range.

Start the battle at extreme range and hit often with the Dominator for as long as possible - this means that the rest of your fleet is doing nothing but just flying in fleet formation (move very slow) but then when the enemy closes start launching your ordnance and coordinate with your bombers/fighters and move the whole formation right behind that wave of ordnance/fighter.

Looks good. Good luck - Hjamlar.

Lord Hjamlar
25-08-2006, 22:24
So what do usuggest to field.... Would it be better if I would deploy Cobras as 3 x 4 squadrons...


Danger Rat
25-08-2006, 23:00
So what do usuggest to field.... Would it be better if I would deploy Cobras as 3 x 4 squadrons...


Ive always found cobras work really well in squads of 4 or 5 esp in there primary role of harrassing the enemy with torpedos. I never leave port with out them

25-08-2006, 23:04
Well, you have 14 cobras so we could do:
Squadron of 5
Squadron of 5
Squadron of 4

But yes, simply splitting them up a little more evenly should give you 3 viable squadrons and hedge against those horrible ld rolls...

26-08-2006, 05:14
Hi Darwin-Green
Finally saw your posting. More escorts would bolster your forces. Your force is pretty good - lot's of beam weapons for when you get up close and personal but beef up your escorts to protect your six when the enemy tries to get behind you and hammers your fleet. I don't know if the Firestorms are good as 2 frigates aren't enough to generate any intimidation and force the enemy to not want to tail behind you.

I like what Robertsjf said about reorganising the cobra squadrons; organize squadrons into at least 4/5 but hey, its your fleet, Hjamler, organize it and try it out. I've never thought of a squadron of 2 cobras but maybe that might work. Never know till ya try.
Good luck and good hunting.

Lord Hjamlar
26-08-2006, 10:07
I know that this is my fleet... But as I've never ever played it I've asked you :P

26-08-2006, 15:57
Hi Hjamlar.
Oops...sorry about that. What I meant was that take all of our advice with a grain of salt. You've got some original ideas with the single squadron of 2 cobras. Might work - might not. I'd be interested in hearing your first action with that tactic- might try it with some friends and see how it works - or maybe with an understrength cobra squadron and see if it'll attract any attention from the others (hopefully they might ignore it for the bigger ships and maybe that squadron might be able to shell out some opportune damage).

When you've had your first game - let us know - I'd be interested in the post-battle report.
Good luck and good hunting.

Lord Hjamlar
27-08-2006, 14:14
Well my first battle will be in about a month, 'cause:
a) I have to move to UK first.
b) I have to buy the fleet.
c) I have to find opponents and paint my fleet.
d) I have to learn rules in practice...


So first I'll propablly buy a basic game set... Than some cobras... And than what??

27-08-2006, 14:35
A box of Imperial Cruisers and then a wider range of escorts.

27-08-2006, 15:12
I'm thinking of starting an Imperial Fleet. I'm going to a club after work now so I don't have anywhere to store a large army. BFG will be perfect as it can be easily packed into a haversack or suchlike that will fit in my locker.

At the present moment I've just drawn up a small 500 point force that I can use to get a feel for the system without having to expend a lot of time and money getting it together.

So on to the list.

Fleet admiral Holt.

Divine Justice - Tyrant class cruiser.

Hammer of Thrace - Lunar class cruiser.

Theta squadron - 2 Sword class frigates.

I decided to go for a strong core of 2 cruisers backed up by a couple of faster moving frigates. The basic idea is to keep my two cruisers together and launch a torpedo attack to break up my opponants fleet then push through firing broadsides.

Theta squadron will follow astern of the main attack and try to prevent my cruisers from being flanked by enemy vessels. I have tried to go for a mix of lance and weapons batteries in order to be as well rounded as possible.

I am lacking in carriers but I figured that in such a small game my turrets should be able to protect me from any bombers that my opponant can depoy. So any thoughts on the list so far (I know it ain't much at the moment). Additionaly are there any recomendations for enlarging the force up to 1000 points.


27-08-2006, 19:45
Another Lunar is always a good choice as well as another Sword. Probably also want to add something with Attack Craft so a Mars would be a good Battlecruiser to add. If you still have points remaining a squadron of Cobras to flank the enemy and send a wave of torpedoes down their line.

29-08-2006, 01:07
Never Underestimate the Dauntless class Light Cruiser either... A very handy ship.

Danger Rat
29-08-2006, 08:48
Never Underestimate the Dauntless class Light Cruiser either... A very handy ship.

I agree either variant is good i generally run the lance armed one but the torpedo variant is quite good too. I find they work best in pairs as on there own they are vunerable with only 6 hit points. They also work really well if teamed up with a squadron of swords.

29-08-2006, 15:15
I have a pair of each and use them in conjuction with my Firestorm and Cobra Squadrons...

Inquisitor Maul
29-08-2006, 16:16
I use a squadron of three and they're absolutely devastating when they get in behind the enemy. Those strength 9 lances are horrible when you can't reach them.

29-08-2006, 18:09
imo the dauntless is the best class in the imperial roster

Inquisitor Maul
29-08-2006, 21:11
imo the dauntless is the best class in the imperial roster

Cheap, fast and deadly in groups. Vulnerable to ordnance though and they can't take much fire.

30-08-2006, 09:15
Are the torpedo variants any good? The ones with prow lances look kinda ugly.

Danger Rat
30-08-2006, 11:30
Are the torpedo variants any good? The ones with prow lances look kinda ugly.

Yes especially in groups of 2/3 and if you squadron them and thats a massive torpedo wave, a friend of mine swears by the torpedo variant. Its personal preference really between lances and torps i prefer the lance armed ones in game terms esp if you can get behind your opponents ships.

07-09-2006, 09:53
Gothic class.
Pretty useless. The large number of lances are nice but not enough to generate some decent hits. At least has the torpedoes. Can add its weight to the initial torpedo run.

Mars class.
Jack of all trades. Okay in most situations. Good fighter complement, nova cannon, but poor broadsides, but extremely long range lance (good) but downside is the small number of lances means you've got to be lucky to get a hit

Are you serious?

The Gothic is an excellent support ship when used in conjunction with a pair of Lunars or a single Tyrant or Dominator. Being all Lance armed means you can pound away with weapons batteries then finish them off with the Gothics Lances, many a foe has met a bloody end at the hands of one of my Locked On Gothics. I usually squadron one with two Lunars, just work out how quickly they can cripple then destroy a cruiser then tell me they're pretty useless?

As for the Mars, i would go as far as to say its probably the worst ship in the fleet list, its overpriced and not that great at anything and for a Battlecruiser thats well over 250pts i usually put the points towards a pair of normal cruisers or a Battleship, usually an Emperor Class as for 75pts more its SO much better in every way.

Sorry rant over

As for other things, Dauntless are amazing! Usually use two lance armed on the flank to protect my Dictator (Carrier) and then move in to support when needed as the enemy will concentrate their fire against the big ships that are closer which saves them from taking a beating as they truly are Light Cruisers.

10-09-2006, 20:00
Ah that's the beauty of bfg, the different ways to play it.

Chaos and Eldar pirates just thrash imperials though :D

Danger Rat
13-09-2006, 10:56
Ah that's the beauty of bfg, the different ways to play it.

Chaos and Eldar pirates just thrash imperials though :D

Not all the time:D :D

13-09-2006, 11:26
That's why good admirals play imperials ;)

Danger Rat
13-09-2006, 12:59
That's why good admirals play imperials ;)

too right:D