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Tiberian
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #15 on: December 23, 2007, 08:21:16 am »

Supox can actually evade the blazer form by using the special correctly. I have succeeded in it a few times and if the Guardian captain doesn't get lucky, Supox will win then.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #16 on: December 23, 2007, 01:12:48 pm »

"a few times" does not a reliable strategy make.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #17 on: December 23, 2007, 07:00:47 pm »

It means that the Androsynth Guardian does not overwhelm the Supox Blade. By using the best available strategy, the Supox captain can make it into a match and at least take some Androsynth crew down with him.

Incapable Guardian captain will definitely lose to a capable Blade captain.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #18 on: December 23, 2007, 09:29:31 pm »

I've seen Earthling kill Androsynth before too. Doesn't mean the match isn't one-sided. At best, the Androsynth vs Supox fight odds could be bumped down from "Excellent" to "Good", although I'm inclined to leave it as it is.

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Incapable Guardian captain will definitely lose to a capable Blade captain.

This is a meaningless barometer. I've listed the fight outlooks as if both players are skilled at the game.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #19 on: December 23, 2007, 11:56:57 pm »

I always get the feeling that the Supox's special has so much potential if you can just use it well.


Also, I think Shiver's guide is more for the basic fundamentals, so even though an ace pilot could do things that are normally very black/white, the guide is based on the averages.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2007, 04:25:17 am »

I registered just to say how much I enjoy this topic, I look forward to the rest of it.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2008, 07:26:20 am »

My next post breaks the 20,000 character limit so I'm gonna have to split it up into two parts. There will probably be a lot of this going on from here on out.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #22 on: January 04, 2008, 07:30:04 am »

The Arilou Skiff



Being the first of several ships designed for flanking, the Arilou is built around the premise of being able to pick apart its enemies without taking any damage in return. With only six crew members, this craft does not allow its pilot any room for error. While the Arilou is sometimes useful, it does not live up to its 16 point price tag. The ship's maximum velocity is not high enough for it to flank most opponents the conventional way, so Arilou pilots must instead rely heavily upon a frustratingly random teleportation ability to get into attack position.



Primary Function: Auto-Aiming Laser



Not much to say here. It's a short range laser that is always pointed at your opponent. When you unload on another vessel with this weapon, make sure you do not exhaust your battery entirely. You'll need a small amount of energy in case an emergency teleport becomes necessary.


Secondary Function: Teleport



For only three points of energy, the Arilou may instantly teleport to a random location within the arena. This ability is most frequently used as an escape mechanism but it also has offensive potential. To teleport offensively, use the secondary function repeatedly until your ship appears close to your opponent at an angle they are not able to stop you from flanking them. Between each teleport you should wait for your battery to recharge so that you are at your maximum capacity when the moment to strike finally presents itself. This technique is known as "chain teleportation". It is irritating, yet effective against a range of different enemy ships.

Teleportation has a catch to it: There is a miniscule chance of the Arilou spawning inside an asteroid or planet, destroying it instantly. The more you use Arilou, the more you will learn to hate this flaw in the ship's design.



Bonus Feature: Inertial Nullifier



Arilou is the only ship in the game which does not continue to coast in a direction after it turns off its thrusters, allowing it to come to a full stop in an instant. Arilou is also not affected by the planet's gravity, nor the Chmmr's tractor beam.



Ship-to-Ship Comparisons


[Androsynth]

Outlook: Bad. Arilou is not fast enough to catch a bubble bathing Androsynth off guard very often and will collapse quickly after contact with a few acid bubbles.

Tactics: Do the best you can to fly in close and zap at the Androsynth. You will probably have to teleport to escape the mess of bubbles following you after a successful attack run. If the Androsynth uses their comet form, nip at them for a split second with your laser and then teleport away before they make contact with you. Do not chain teleport, for this will more likely drop you into a cloud of acid bubbles than any position you can attack from safely.



[Arilou]

Outlook: As with all mirror matches, the ship which arrives with full crew has a slight upper hand that will usually result in a win.

Tactics: There is no strategy to this fight whatsoever. Fly at them and turn on your beam just as you get in range. If you have more crew, you should win. If not, accept the inevitable.



[Chenjesu]

Outlook: Terrible. If Chenjesu gravity whips, there's really nothing Arilou can do to hurt it.

Tactics: Chenjesu has vulnerable areas behind its back that Arilou can attack without being hit by shrapnel from photon shard detonations. These weak spots are both at an angle -- shrapnel travels in a straight line directly behind the Chenjesu so you don't want to be lined up with it perfectly. All that said, you're not going to beat Chenjesu if the other player has the sense to seek out the planet and perform a gravity whip. Once it does this, you will be unable to attack the Chenjesu's vulnerable points as it sails at a high speed. With that in mind, the best thing to do is rush the Chenjesu as quickly as you can and hurt it before it gets to the planet.



[Chmmr]

Outlook: Terrible. There is no way to win this match, do not even try.

Tactics: Attack the Chmmr from a blind spot if possible. You might get off a few points of damage before being shredded into atoms.



[Druuge]

Outlook: Good. Druuge can kill Arilou in one shot, but landing a hit is quite difficult for them.

Tactics: Arilou doesn't have enough top speed to catch Druuge off guard so the only thing to do is chain teleport until you land next to it and attack from there. If you appear anywhere in front of the Druuge, teleport again immediately. The Druuge's cannon slugs travel too fast to dodge unless you are very far away.



[Earthling]

Outlook: Good. Arilou is agile enough to evade the Earthling's missiles and shred its target apart. Unfortunately, a single missile hit virtually guarantees Arilou's defeat.

Tactics: The thing that will make you lose most frequently in this match are missiles that whirl around after missing you the first time and surprise your Arilou from off-camera on a second pass. Missiles can also crash into Arilou as they come out of a bad teleport, so be prepared to teleport multiple times to escape a bad situation. I recommend chain teleporting until you find a suitable position to attack from. You want to be appear in the direction they are drifting towards. If the Earthling is pillboxing, landing close to them from any direction should be sufficient. Once you've got good positioning, you will have to sidestep a missile or two as you move in on your target. Unload most of your battery with your laser at close range and teleport to escape. You have vastly superior firepower to the Earthling's point-defense laser, but they will whittle you down to nothing if you dawdle around next to them with a depleted battery. Your laser also has a slightly longer range than theirs so it's technically possible to take down Earthling without sustaining any damage at all.



[Ilwrath]

Outlook: Bad. Arilou's beam has a miniscule range advantage over the Ilwrath flamethrower, but the Ilwrath's cloaking device prevents the Arilou laser from auto-aiming. This allows Ilwrath to give Arilou a very hard time.

Tactics: The Ilwrath is probably going to stay cloaked most of the time to screw with you. You'll have to move in and point at them manually if they refuse to uncloak. Additionally, Ilwrath's flame thrower will often block your beam from hitting its mark. Flying straight at the Ilwrath's position and turning on your laser will generally result in a very quick death, so don't be reckless. Play conservatively and be sure to let your battery recharge completely between attack runs. This match can be won, but it doesn't allow you any room for mistakes.



[Kohr-Ah]

Outlook: Bad. The Kohr-Ah's defenses aren't perfect against Arilou, but Arilou's low damage threshold dooms them to crash into a flame burst or spinning blade eventually.

Tactics: There are three ways the Kohr-Ah can play this...

1) Remain stationary behind a wall of blades.
2) Run away constantly while firing back at you.
3) Careen wildly off an extended gravity whip.

If the Kohr-Ah remains stationary behind a wall of blades, move in reasonably close to it and wait for the blades to drift after you. A gap will appear in the blade wall and you will be able to attack with impunity. Be prepared to veer off and avoid a flame wave or two. Once the Kohr-Ah has drained their battery power, tear into their hull. You will most likely have to teleport to escape them at some point.

When the Kohr-Ah is flying away from you at their default speed, chain teleport until you can approach them from the direction they are traveling in and attack. Watch out for flame waves and stray blades as usual. If you can fake out the Kohr-Ah into wasting their flame waves and remain in their immediate vicinity, that will give you a perfect opportunity to unload your laser on them.

A Kohr-Ah on a gravity whip must be attacked from the front. They are faster than you in this state, so line yourself up with the direction they are careening in and fly away from them on this pathway. As they draw near you should nip them with your laser for only a split second before teleporting away. They will definitely run you over with their flame wave if you stick around for very long. Expect to have to evade a few stray blades as you do this.



[Melnorme]

Outlook: Uncertain. Both ships are quite capable of tearing the other apart.

Tactics: If the Melnorme pillboxes, chain teleport until you land next to it and rip it apart. You can circle Melnorme faster than it can turn, so once you appear close to it the fight is pretty much over. Unfortunately, most players aren't going to stay put and let you do this. If the Melnorme performs a gravity whip, they'll be travelling too fast for chain teleportation to be of much use. You'll have to line yourself up with the direction they're traveling, fly into them and then blast away as you pass along either their left or right side. If you can approach them from a blind spot they won't be able to hit you until you reach striking distance. Even when this attack is executed perfectly, the Melnorme will probably hit you if they guess which side you decide to fly past and spam their energy bolts in that direction. Given the danger of this situation, you need to blitz the Melnorme as fast as possible before it reaches the planet.



[Mmrnmhrm]

Outlook: Bad. The Mmrnmhrm X-Form possesses a weapon which can wipe out Arilou in the blink of an eye, whereas Arilou must make several successful strikes to defeat Mmrnhrm.

Tactics: If the Mmrnmhrm pillboxes, chain teleport until you appear behind them and attack from there. You will have to teleport to escape them after a successful strike. It takes forever, but you'll almost definitely win. Smart Mmrnhrm pilots will enter X-Form while traveling at Y-Form speed in a straight line, however, making them much more difficult to defeat. You will have to sneak by either their left or right side and blast them as they pass by. Also consider juking to one side, then attacking the Mmrnmhrm straight from the front. This is most effective when your opponent has become conditioned to guessing which side you'll attack from.



[Mycon]

Outlook: Excellent. Mycon is helpless against Arilou.

Tactics: This fight is so mindlessly easy that I shouldn't have to write anything at all here. However, if the Mycon performs a gravity whip before you can get to it then things become more complicated. You will need to move directly into the Mycon's path and fire on them as they approach. After damaging them a bit, teleport away so that they don't lob plasmoids into you. Do not let Mycon collide with Arilou when you do this. Plasmoids can still hurt you if they are fired as the Mycon is touching your ship, even if Mycon is sailing at ridiculous speeds while facing the direction it is traveling in. Watch the Mycon's battery and get in as much free damage as possible whenever its reserves are low.



[Orz]

Outlook: Bad. Orz's cannon is very dangerous to Arilou due to its ability to fire from the aft of the ship, respectable range and high projectile velocity.

Tactics: If Orz deploys marines, do the best you can to nip at them with your laser and avoid the Orz itself. Your laser does not target marines however, it always points at your opponent. You will have to maneuver around quite a bit to zap a marine, but it's worth the trouble. Take it slowly and carefully. Only when the arena is clear of marines should you begin chain teleporting to attack the enemy ship itself. A smart opponent will not deploy marines against you at all, in which case you should start teleporting immediately.

If you're not playing a tournament or you're already winning the net melee game at large, consider not attacking marines if you see them. Marine zapping is a highly obnoxious and time consuming activity, especially when the Orz pilot decides to screw with the camera by flipping back and forth across the screen edge to throw you off.



[Pkunk]

Outlook: Uncertain. Arilou has the advantage against a single Pkunk, but multiple incarnations will likely ravage Arilou.

Tactics: Fly away from the Pkunk and let it come to you. As it closes in, whirl around and attack them. Avoid the exact front of the Pkunk as best as you can; they will steamroll you for certain if you rush headlong into their front guns. Aside from that, most exchanges of ordinance will favor Arilou by quite a bit. After squaring off with Pkunk you should avoid taggling with them again until you have recovered your entire battery.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2008, 06:39:04 am by Shiver » Logged
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #23 on: January 04, 2008, 07:30:56 am »

[Shofixti]

Outlook: Bad. This match is an awful teleportation mess that almost always ends with the Shofixti annihilating both ships by way of Glory Device.

Tactics: The other player is going to run away and shoot at you if you try to follow. You will have to fake the Shofixti out into killing itself. There are three cues that most players will wait for before they use the glory device. The first of these is if they see your ship in close proximity to theirs. The second is the sound effect of your weapon going off. The last cue is their ship's crew being killed. Try and trip up each of these (and not necessarily in order) and teleport away the instant you do. Because you must teleport into the other player's ship to meet any of these criteria in the first place, you're in for a long and frustrating fight that favors the Shofixti.



[Slylandro]

Outlook: Bad. Slylandro has a longer range than Arilou and is agile enough to avoid being hit by it. Arilou's laser boasts a higher rate of damage, but rarely will this weapon connect with its target.

Tactics: Be unpredictable. You want to somehow get close enough to hit the Slylandro. I recommend chain teleportation, but feel free to break away from this technique and try to get the drop on the Slylandro through more conventional means.



[Spathi]

Outlook: Terrible. Spathi is too fast and durable for Arilou to even hurt it very much. Also, don't actually play this match because it's the most boring crap ever.

Tactics: Chain teleport until you appear close to the Spathi and attack it as best as you can. Frustratingly, the Spathi will fly away from you before you can inflict more than a couple points of damage even when you land right next to it. Spathi's torpedo weapon will be the death of you if you try to chase it. In fact, those torpedos are probably going to take you out even if you do everything right.



[Supox]

Outlook: Good. Supox's weapon does not lend itself well to combat against Arilou.

Tactics: If the Supox pillboxes or flies around at its default speed, chain teleport until you appear on its side or back and blast away. It generally takes 2-3 successful strikes to wipe out a Supox. The Supox might also go on a gravity whip. If it does this, attack them head-on while traveling along a blind spot. Arilou has the upper hand in a direct firefight such as that. The Supox may use its reverse-thrust ability to break out of its gravity whip and get away from you, in which case you should teleport immediately to avoid being shot up.



[Syreen]

Outlook: Uncertain. The Syreen's song will drain Arilou of its crew easily, but its stupidshooter has a terrible rate of fire that makes it difficult for them to land a killing blow.

Tactics: Find the planet and bump it until you have 3 crew left. This allows you to survive a single direct hit from the Syreen stupidshooter, but when Syreen uses its song on you they won't be able to leech as many of your crew members. Beyond that, you want to get close and sting Syreen as hard as you can before teleporting away to recharge your battery. Approaching Syreen the conventional way is suicide so you'll have to either chain teleport or hide behind the back of the planet to force the Syreen to engage you in close orbit. Either way works.



[Thraddash]

Outlook: Good. Never actually play this match-up, it takes 5-15 minutes all by itself to finish.

Tactics: I don't know what control scheme you're using to play melee, but forget whatever buttons make you turn and accelerate. Under no circumstances should you touch those buttons. Instead, chain teleport and fire off your blaster whenever you land close to the Thraddash. No acceleration minimizes the chance of running into Thraddash afterburner exhaust. Conventional thrust is useless anyhow -- Thraddash moves significantly faster than you do with its afterburners on. The Thraddash blaster is hopelessly ineffective against your small craft, so all they can do is fly around with their afterburners on and hope you get killed by teleporting into a hazard. This fight is decided entirely by luck, but the odds favor you.



[Umgah]

Outlook: Good. Umgah's reverse jump ability can give the Arilou some difficulty, but once the Umgah's battery runs out the Arilou has an almost guaranteed win. The Umgah does not turn fast enough to stop a skilled Arilou from flanking it.

Tactics: Move in and attempt to flank the Umgah. As long as it has some battery energy left, the other player is going to try and mess with you. If they turn themselves away from you, it means they're going to try and reverse zip right into you. Don't try and dodge an offensive zip, just play it safe and teleport as soon as they start zipping. The Umgah will also zip to save itself from being flanked by you. The Umgah's energy does not recharge while its antimatter cone is active, so you want to get close and threaten the other player as quickly as possible after they perform a zip. An Umgah with an empty battery is no real danger to you at all, you will just have to get close to them and circle around until their antimatter cone is not blocking your laser. Even when Umgah has some energy left they can still be beaten, but the fight is tricky until you've drained them.



[Ur-Quan]

Outlook: Terrible. If the Ur-Quan performs a gravity whip, flanking it becomes virtually impossible.

Tactics: A pillboxing Ur-Quan is easy to get the drop on, but will dump fighters on you in a heartbeat. Those fighters are a huge liability to your opponent, however. Break off your attack when you see them and lead them into asteroids to chip away at the Ur-Quan's crew. Ur-Quan should lose to Arilou when it pillboxes. However, smart Ur-Quan players will gravity whip off the planet and make the fight exponentially more difficult for you. Just like with the Melnorme, you'll have to fly past one of their sides to hurt them. Unlike Melnorme, Ur-Quan has a massive amount of crew and will drop Arilou in one shot. Ouch. The best you can do is try to flank them while they search for the planet at the start of the match.



[Utwig]

Outlook: Terrible. Utwig turns very fast and has wide coverage with its weapons, making it almost impossible to flank. Even if you miraculously succeed at this, it will shield and shrug off your attack until it's ready to fire on you again.

Tactics: If Utwig pillboxes, chain teleport until you end up behind it. At that point you can fire on it, but it will probably block your attack. I recommend shooting for a split second, then not firing at all to put a dent in the Utwig's battery. You're screwed regardless. If Utwig decides to move around or gravity whip, try and flank it the old fashioned way. You still aren't going to win, but it's much easier to damage a moving Utwig.



[VUX]

Outlook: Good. Arilou is agile enough to approach VUX for its blind spots and avoid limpets. Arilou may still win if it picks up a limpet or two, for its mobility is not decreased by them as dramatically as most other spacecraft.

Tactics: This match is tricky, yet very fun. If the other player is using a VUX to attack your Arilou, teleport at the start of the match to negate any chance of their initial warp-in from damaging you. Beyond that, this fight comes down entirely to how well you can move up a VUX's blind spots and flank them. Your ship's outline is small and the VUX's weapon is a thin line, so these blind spots are rather large. Avoid limpets to the best of your ability as you fight, but do not obsess over never picking up a single one of them.



[Yehat]

Outlook: Bad. Yehat can be flanked to some degree, but its shields negate most of the damage an Arilou can dish out. Yehat can sustain a lot of punishment thanks to this, whereas Arilou falls apart quickly when hit.

Tactics: Flank Yehat as efficiently as possible. If Yehat gravity whips, you can actually hit them straight from the front without taking weapon damage due to the Yehat moving nearly as fast as their own projectiles. Just be sure you don't get close enough to touch the enemy ship or those shots will rip you apart.



[Zoq-Fot-Pik]

Outlook: Good. Arilou is small enough that Zoq-Fot-Pik's scattergun will not hit their mark very consistently.

Tactics: Assuming the Zoq-Fot-Pik player is smart enough to know not to chase you, you will have to chain teleport until you find a decent position to attack from. Once you have good positioning, move in and blast away. If you make every burst of your laser count from full battery to zero, you can destroy Zoq-Fok-Pik in one continuous stream. Even without such precision, you should still have no trouble winning.




Ideal Purpose

Definitely use Arilou to take down Mycon. If the other player has no Mycon, deploy Arilou against any of the other ships it's effective against. Because most players are sharp enough to know not to use Mycon, this ship is generally not worth its cost. However, it can be if you're up against a player who underestimates the value of cheapo ships. An opponent without Shofixti or Ilwrath will be forced to send something valuable to counter your Arilou after it scores a kill.



Reprisal

If the Arilou you've got your sights on has half crew or less remaining, bring in a Zoq-Fot-Pik. Landing three hits with the scattergun is not difficult to do. Defeating Arilou with Zoq-Fot-Pik will put the other player at a rather painful score disadvantage. Shofixti or Ilwrath are better choices against an unscathed Arilou. You can also use Androsynth, Slylandro, Mmrnmhrm or Spathi if none of the cheapo ships are available to you, although none of these are ideal due to their higher cost.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2008, 06:49:43 am by Shiver » Logged
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #24 on: January 05, 2008, 12:09:11 pm »

Very nicely done! I really like the illustrations, too. Smiley

I'm curious about all those edits. Did you change anything important? I'm not going to read the whole thing again. Tongue

Also, I'm really interested in what other veteran players think. *pokes the other veteran players*
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2008, 12:59:51 pm »

I don't use neither Androsynth nor Arilou so I can't comment on those, but I'd say the Supox can take the Arilou down even though it is an even match-up. The best strategy is to hang around the planet's orbit, so the Arilou has a smaller chance of a successfull teleport. Then, when the Arilou is in sight, shoot one burst and reverse-thrust back behind the planet or if it's not possible, into deep space. And when in deep space, the Arilou starts chain-teleporting, and then there is time to get back into orbit.

Sometimes in that situation I have seen the Arilou to just sit in deep space waiting for the Supox to get away from orbit, but I think in that case, the Arilou is the one who has to make the initiative because as Shiver stated, Supox can't win without the planet.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2008, 06:04:58 pm »

Very nicely done! I really like the illustrations, too. Smiley

Yeah, they really bring it to life. Can't wait to see the final product.
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2008, 10:47:21 pm »

Tiberian, we're going to need to do some test bouts at some point. I'm doing the majority of my testing on Elvish Pillager but he doesn't see everything all the time.


I'm curious about all those edits. Did you change anything important? I'm not going to read the whole thing again. Tongue

Yeah, I wouldn't recommend that either. This whole thread is going to be edit city. When a final product is released maybe then would be the best time to re-read.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2008, 10:50:21 pm by Shiver » Logged
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #28 on: January 27, 2008, 01:41:17 pm »

There's a little problem here. You say that Arilou is bad against Shofixti, and cite as a reason that the fight usually ends with both ships being destroyed.
So what do the words "terrible"-"bad"-"evenly matched"-"good"-"excellent" stand for? Chance of victory, or whether it is cost-efficient to bring an Arilou against a Shofixti?
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Re: Player-Versus-Player Strategy Guide
« Reply #29 on: January 27, 2008, 02:58:44 pm »

Quote from: Valaggar Redux
There's a little problem here. You say that Arilou is bad against Shofixti, and cite as a reason that the fight usually ends with both ships being destroyed.

Good question. When Shofixti scores a mutual kill, the victim player is supposed to pick their next ship first. The Shofixti player gets to see exactly what the victim brings into the arena before responding. This initiative advantage is decisive. So the Shofixti may die to Arilou, but the Arilou player being forced to pick first is such a handicap that it may as well be looked upon as a victory for Shofixti. That's how it's supposed to work.

This gets more complicated because of a flaw in net melee that Meep-Eep has stated will be fixed in the next UQM release. Currently the player hosting a net melee match will always force their opponent to make first pick when a Shofixti - any Shofixti - destroys a ship with the Glory Device. Not too many players know about this, but the ones that do frequently lament this 'homefield advantage'. A hosting player's Shofixti is awesome while a challenging player may as well not use the ship at all, at least in UQM 0.6.2.

Quote from: Valaggar Redux
So what do the words "terrible"-"bad"-"evenly matched"-"good"-"excellent" stand for? Chance of victory, or whether it is cost-efficient to bring an Arilou against a Shofixti?

The outlooks are based upon a ship's chance of destroying another ship regardless of point value. They assume that both ships have full crew. If one ship has low crew then the dynamic changes, sometimes by a lot. Zoq-Fot-Pik is an awful pick against an Arilou with full crew, yet a fantastic pick against that same ship if it's already beaten up a bit.


LATE EDIT: All of the Shofixti outlooks are weighed by the Shofixti's general effectiveness, not its chance of victory. Because that ship is a suicide bomber and not a proper combatant, I'm measuring that one differently. I hope this thread isn't too confusing.  Lips Sealed
« Last Edit: January 30, 2008, 08:09:57 pm by Shiver » Logged
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