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PanO and Frostbyte

Discussion in 'PanOceania' started by MikeTheScrivener, Jun 20, 2019.

  1. MikeTheScrivener

    MikeTheScrivener Kamau Amphibious Intervention Operative

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    How would you fellas approach this mission? Its coming up in a local tournament and I want to be prepared.

    Vird could be decent, a lot of ARO can make it tough for an opponent to leave the DZ and actually activate any of their Heating Units. But at the same time there is very little HI to survive the cold and no really good data tracker target. Also no DA or D-charges to break enemy units

    MO is probably the best for this mission but then I have to play MO in the rest of the tournament. While I am not opposed I suspect this time theres going to be some stiff competition so I would prefer something I'm super comfortable with

    ASA is what I'm leaning towards now – good board presence and a linkable HI. Great data trackers, specialists, fighters and minelayers. It's too bad the Akalis has such poor specialist options (read: only one).

    NCA I haven't really considered – though they could be decent.

    What do you guys think? how would you build a list and for what sectorial?
     
    barakiel likes this.
  2. ThananRollice

    ThananRollice Your Friendly Neighborhood Locust

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    MO is indeed a great option for Frostbyte, but if you don't want to commit to them, I'd highly recommend bringing a TAG at least as your Datatracker Frostbyte is usually decided on who can keep their Datatracker alive, because you can dominate the center zone unimpeded if you kill the enemy DT.
     
  3. MikeTheScrivener

    MikeTheScrivener Kamau Amphibious Intervention Operative

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    I had similar thoughts, which is part of why I am leaning towards ASA and bringing the Tik
     
  4. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    Frostbyte's a great mission because there are so many different ways to approach success.

    Datatracker:
    A lot will depend on going first or second here. If you go first, you need your Tracker to be tough-as-nails. Remember too that they get their own Order to use, so while having a linked Datatracker isn't bad, there's certainly incentive to run a solo guy who can put that nice order to use.

    Automatically getting Immunity to the Cold is nice too. So while having a HI be your Datatracker, it might also be nice to have it be a light infantry or something similar, so that you can free your Heavy Infantry up to be aggressive and run risks. For this reason, it's really important to look at the capabilities of your opponent before appointing a Datatracker. Going first, and expecting Speculative Fire or Climbing Plus to come after your Datatracker? You probably want 2-Wounds and ARM to help. Going second? It almost doesn't matter who you appoint, just make sure they get where they need to be.

    Breaking Heaters:
    This can be a really easy way to dominate this mission, but obviously you have to watch your own heaters, and you may never get a chance to attack your opponent's. Some armies have amazing capability for attacking the Heaters, so maintaining a constant defense is valuable. It's for this reason alone that I might rule out MO... They don't have a ton to keep a Fiday from tossing smoke and beating a Heater apart, while Acon, NCA, and VIRD do have some options.

    VIRD:
    VIRD's... Okay at this mission. Certainly capable. But VIRD can't casually build for button pushing, and getting those consoles while also putting up a strong defense is a tricky balance to manage. Still, if VIRD can get two consoles fast on Turn 1 and activate both your own heaters, they can force the opponent to go after the third console (remember, consoles can only activate one heater ever, so you can really force your opponent's hand if you get two consoles quickly.) Double Jammer, Helots, Kamau MSV2 can make that last heater into an absolute beast to get.

    The big trouble I see is that VIRD has to work really hard to dig out a hidden Datatracker. Also, you really don't want to end the game with 3-4 high-cost Snake Eaters in the midfield, where they all die from Cold. Zulu Cobras, Crocs, Echo Bravos, combat REMs, etc. all become a bit riskier to use, and you need to either sell their lives appropriate while keeping track of overall VP for both players, or be ready to retreat (or, possibly, advance) into the closest Heated Zone to preserve those points. I've had games hinge on whether or not I could safely pull back a couple of Zulu Cobras before the end of Turn 3.

    The Patsy Haris is pretty decent here, whether you're going first or second.

    Acon:
    I think Acon's a really good bet for this mission. Mines are great, active and reactive turn firepower is good, excellent Datatracker choices, and Dart is one of the best models in the game for hunting hidden enemy Datatrackers. An enemy who has to take first Turn vs Acon in Frostbyte should be really, really worried... Especially if you also have the Tikbalang in there too.

    MO:
    I mentioned that MO's low defense feels a bit risky here, but obviously it's great to be able to park a pile of Heavy Infantry in the midfield and just let them all support one another. You have to watch out for an enemy slipping around them to attack your Heaters, but this isn't the end of the world. MO can battle their way to a console if their hand gets forced, and has adequate coverage for flipping on their own heaters as necessary. Slipping a DA Magister or some other CC mook into the enemy backline is also something that MO does easier than any of the other Sectorials.

    NCA:
    One nice thing about NCA is they have very good control over the attrition they suffer in this mission. Virtually all of their units tend to stay close to the DZ, so you don't have to worry about overextending resources that are then going to freeze to death. You have to work a bit harder to get to consoles and turn on your Heaters, but even one activated Heater is going to protect the vast majority of NCA's units. NCA has to work a bit harder to take down enemy Datatrackers, and they don't have a ton of great Datatrackers themselves, but overall NCA is highly stable here. You can also really crush an opponent's gameplan with a well-placed TO camo ARO, whether that's zapping a Datatracker as he's hiking to the midfield, or zapping an enemy Specialist trying to turn on a critical Heater. That surprise value is a hugely underrated trick of NCA's, especially in the current ITS Season where opponents have to protect Datatrackers, Xenotech Runners, Specialists, Designated Targets, etc etc etc.

    Hope that helps. I think all the Sectorials have good tools for this mission, but they're all going to approach them very differently.
     
    #4 barakiel, Jun 20, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
    volgo and Ayadan like this.
  5. Ayadan

    Ayadan Knight of the TAG Order

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    From my own experience:
    It really depends first of all if you prefer running 1 group list or more streamlined 15+ orders lists.
    If you're running 1 group only, defending your heaters isn't a priority. You're going to run some troopers already immune to the frost so your main objective is to kill the ennemy datatracker and keep yours alive. Then, if you're going first, stricking deep and hard your opponent while holding the middle of the table to make the access to the consoles a nightmare is your secondary objective in order to secure the major victory. You can switch on a console if you can spare some orders for this but since most part of your points will be in HIs or TAGs, loosing your support troopers at the end of the game won't be a huge drawback compared to if you would happen to run 1 HI and 15 squishy troopers.
    Of all our sectorials and Vanilla, I would say that everyone can success with this plan since ORCs are pretty good for this scenario as well as MO troopers and our Guards. NCA has access to Bolts who are really amazing for holding ground and preventing light units to access to some parts of the table but the other sectorials have their own way to do this also and Vanilla just give you an amazing flexibility which is also great for this scenario.

    If you prefer to play like 90% of the players here, then I would say that VIRD has some difficulties to protect its own heaters against some armies. Tohaa, for example, can easily send a Triad with Makaul and Sukeuls to by pass Kamaus and ZC and destroy your Heaters and activate theirs. A thing SAA don't have to fear that much thanks to Minelayers. NCA and MO have access to a good amount of TO ARO pieces to make this kind of suicid squad sweats because it could be difficult to even reach the objectives alive. Add to this that both of these sectorials are maybe the most frontal we have and, as such, they bring a hell of firepower easily. Vanilla is the most versatile of all those. You don't have access to the order economy to FT to bring 5 guys in the middle to hold the central zone but you gain access to run some MO troopers like a Seraph Spitfire to make a swift strike, destroy the heaters in one order and then mess with your opponent and still have minelayers and NCA TO nightmare. This is just an example but Vanilla is harder to predict than the sectorials as there is a lot of good options in it.

    Personally, I tend to run 1 group lists for this scenario with a Haris of ORCs or a core of Magisters and add sometimes add a TAG in the mix as it is easier to sustain the attrition battle with heavy units rather than tons of weak ones.
     
  6. Hexa

    Hexa TAG pilot

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    I prefer taking most of my points in cold- immune TAGs and heavies, and playing for the Datatracker.

    I believe this is incorrect. According to Comlog:
    Screenshot_20190621-081549.jpg
    • You cannot activate more than one heating unit for each console.
    • A Connected Console can be Connected again by the other player, applying the same procedure.

    So you can't press the same button more than once, but having pressed a button doesn't stop your opponent pressing it too.
     
  7. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    Right, the key phrase there is "You cannot Activate more than one Heating Unit for each console." So once you activate a console, it activates a heater.

    Since there's no language anywhere in the mission about "an enemy activating a console turns your heater off", I see a general consensus that one console turns on one heater, then the console basically no longer has any effect, even if the opponent interacts with the console.

    I don't think it's a very intuitive interpretation, especially since there's language there about being able to flip consoles back... And according to this rule interpretation, flipping a console back has no effect whatsoever... But that's how I commonly see it played.

    The reason I like it though is because it does let the player going first get a nice tactical advantage. Going second is very strong in this mission, in terms of killing and preserving your Data Tracker, so the player who goes first can quickly make his DZ and Dead Zone "safe" by getting two heaters, and make the player going second work hard for that last console.
     
  8. Hexa

    Hexa TAG pilot

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    I put the focus on the "you": YOU cannot benefit from pressing a console multiple times, but your opponent can. Both versions are unintuitive in different ways, but I think my way fits the wording better since there's a reason for the text about your opponent pressing it too.

    I actually think either version would be ok.

    I find first turn preferable already in this mission, since it's easier to assassinate a Datatracker before its player has had a turn to protect it.
     
  9. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    I don't really contend either version. I'm primarily bound by how events decide to rule it, because I have to comply with their decisions whenever I compete.

    If that's not likely to effect you, I say reach consensus with your meta and go from there.
     
  10. Hexa

    Hexa TAG pilot

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    My version is the consensus the New Zealand meta uses. I don't think we thought of the other interpretation, or realised some metas rule it differently.
     
  11. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    The reason your opponent might want to press it, even if you've already turned on heaters in your table half, is so they actually claim the heater as "theirs." There is indeed a scoring component involved.

    Example:
    If I have activated the heater in my DZ, and you hit my console... You don't turn off my heater, but you do stop me from owning one. Even though the heater in my DZ benefits me, it isn't technically "mine". You've taken it away. This prevents me from scoring "Have at least one Active Heating Unit at the end of the game."

    That's what the clause of flipping heaters back is all about.
     
  12. Hexa

    Hexa TAG pilot

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    @barakiel , I Don't see any mention of being able to take over a heating unit. By my reading you'd activate a new heater.

    In any case, I've started a rules thread for it here:
    https://forum.corvusbelli.com/threads/in-frostbyte-can-both-players-press-the-same-console.33902/

    Apologies @MikeTheScrivener for hijacking your thread. In PanO it's important to plan how you can assassinate a Datatracker, since that's something we can struggle with. Personally in the mixed faction I'd like a Krakot and either Seraph or Tikbalang; though drop troops, magisters, skirmishers and possibly even a heavy grenade launcher should work too.
    If your Datatracker scores and you've killed your opponent's one that's basically a win, so keep in mind that the rest of your army dying doesn't necessarily matter (and yes, that attitude would be absolutely horrible from an actual commander).
     
    #12 Hexa, Jun 20, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
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  13. eciu

    eciu Easter worshiper

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    Tikbalang starting on a wall is your best non-MO datatracker.
     
  14. Toalpaz

    Toalpaz Active Member

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    You should probably just play Vanilla. Joan or a T.A.G. can do everything you need to do as a data tracker. And vanilla has a better deployment zone than any of the sectorials.