The Firing Squad – Revisited

Back in April, Shadowlight (of 1st Battalion), shared some great tips for using the firing squad. This time around, Logo, our resident firing squad expert, shares some additional guidance.

Bases to Avoid

You should avoid split bases and bases that have scattered wall segments that force you to drop far away. Sharps like to shoot walls too much.

Bases with lots of mortars and sonics should be avoided at times because they can take out med droids and negate the advantage of distance than sharps give you.

Also avoid bases with an active Deka next to the SC. But also, don’t be afraid of any level of Deka. Seven level 9 sharps with 2 med droids and Kessen will kill a level 40 Deka without losing 1 sharp.

Bases to Target

Kong Harris I from Darkness Rising

Kong Harris I from Darkness Rising

Kong Harris I’s base is an example of a great base to attack. I 3 starred him easily yesterday. First, he was upgrading Deka, but even if it was active, all you do is take a z95 to the wall and drop a reg to trip it. Drop a reg to the southwest side to lure and drop sharps to kill it.

I dropped all sharps on the southwest side of the base. They take down front 2 shields. Then I dropped the jugg on the northeast side to take out the back 2 shields. I dropped 2 regs first to get the sonics to fire, and then dropped the jugg.

Watch Out for Traps and the SC

Two Achilles heels for the firing squad are traps, especially IDT traps, and the SC. Sharps target infantry first, and if you trip an SC and infantry comes out, the sharps go straight for them. That’s why I drop a vanguard first to clear the road of traps.

The timing of dropping the jugg takes practice. You want the jugg to be able to drop the back shield at almost the same time or just after the sharps drop the front shield so you can X-wing the SC.

The position of the SC is also important. If the SC is outside of the shield, then trip it and lure the SC troops to where you want to drop sharps and use HWK, or just X-wing in the first place. Most squad centers are under sheilds, so the best place to drop the jugg is in the middle of the base or toward the backside of the base (backside from where you attack from).

Looking at Kong’s base, if I didn’t get the back shields down, and the jugg was destroyed, the sharps would eventually trip the SC after 2 front sheilds were down. So any infantry would have to come out into the open to attack. Sharps will take care of them or use the HWK.

Lots of Imps are surrounding their IDT traps with walls which gives away their position. Always try to look for and avoid that.

Sith Goddess from Vaders Marines

Sith Goddess from Vaders Marines

This is Sith Goddess’s base, and it’s tough. I’ve attacked her 3 times and I’ve won twice. The wins were 75% and 73%. The loss was 45%. I lost because I had no B-wings. Her Deka is level 40, but not a threat. I take a z95 to the walls and use a pathfinder to trip the Deka and lure it to the northwest side and kill it. She has a lot more traps on the northeast side near her 3 credit vaults. She expects to be attacked there.

What makes her base tough is her shields are very close together and she has a cluster of 4 level 9 sonics. Sharps will take some time to get 2 shields down and sonics will do plenty of damage to droids. Once shields are down you need to B-wing the cluster.

I drop 2 regs on the southeast side, away from the SC, to get sonics to fire, and then drop the jugg. I usually get 1 shield down and not the other. Her SC is full of spiders, which sharps will take out.

Firing Squad Load Out

Kessen, 7 sharps, 4 meds, 1 pathfinder, 1 vanguard, and 1 jugg. My SC (which I use on offense) has 4 sharps and 1 vanguard. That’s for a level 9 SC and all level 9 Unit Transports. Only having 7 sharps can be tough against level 9 bases. The 4 extra sharps from the SC is almost a necessity.

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Firing Squad Strategy

by Shadowlight (1st-Battalion)

The firing squad strategy uses sharpshooters to take out a base at a range of 10 tiles. We usually refer to the sharpshooter as “sharps” or “SS” and medic droids as “meds”.

Rebel Sharpshooter

Rebel Sharpshooter

The most common deployments are:

Juggernaut, 7 SS, 4 Meds, and 6 rebels = 102 units. You can remove the rebels for level 7

9 SS, 5 Meds, and 5 rebels = 102 units. You can remove 1 med and 1 rebel for level 7

9 SS, 4 Meds, 1 Hailfire, 3 rebel = 102 units. You can remove a sharp and add 2 rebels for level 7.

The best Hero for this loadout is Johhar Kessen. If you don’t have Kessen, then Han or Luke will work for this deployment.

Kessen’s ideal base is a turret farm, whereas Han is great when the turret makeup is more balanced. Luke is helpful when the deployment needs to start in the corner, at close range, so his lightsaber move can absorb the turret fire while the sharps clear the nearby turrets and create some space. But watch out for the rapidfire turrets because they will change targets to hit the meds during Luke’s dance moves.

It would be a shame to pass up on a base with lots of loot because it isn’t ideal for the hero you’re used to using. So, try out the different heroes with the firing squad to see how they work together.

Johhar Kessen

Johhar Kessen

Kessen, Leia, your droideka (“Deka”), and sharps will target your opponent’s droideka and Infantry before anything else on the base. If a Deka is present and buried in the base, it might be best to skip that base. Otherwise they will run into the middle of the base to get to the droideka and will die quickly. The best bases to attack either have the Deka under repair or is easily tripped with a rebel so you can lure it to where you are going to attack.

If you are attacking level 9 bases, watch out for the Imperial Dropship Trap (IDT) because if you trip that trap, then the sharps and Kessen will stop attacking and rush to kill the troops that are deployed.

Dropping Rebels to setup traps is a good stragety before dropping sharps. Vanguards will hunt traps in a future update and then I would recommend carrying one of them in place of rebels.

Dropping Rebels to set off traps is a good strategy before dropping sharps. Vanguards will hunt traps in a future update, and then I would recommend carrying one of them in place of rebels.

The best deployment is grouped to quickly take out shields and SC, or split into two groups to take out parts of the base at the same time.

This is an example of a grouped Firing Squad attack

This is an example of a grouped Firing Squad attack

If you use air support, A-Wings are great to take out shields to help speed up sharps attack since sharps have a 50% nerf against shields. The z95 is highly recommended to take out large wall sections, to speed up the attack. (Please note: The A-Wing is unintentionally nerfed at the moment so that it doesn’t take out shields in one shot. The devs are investigating, but for such a simple fix, they’re taking an awfully long time with this one.)

The advantage of the firing squad attack is the range, so burst farms barely get off a shot at the sharps if attacking at the right angel. Also, with the update that makes rapid fire turrets change targets to take out meds, the meds will stay out of range of the rapid fire turrets. Just like with the heavy/med combo, it’s best to avoid mortar heavy bases since your meds won’t last long and the firing squad attack moves to slow to overcome that weakness.

Please post in the comments what tips you’ve found to make this strategy more successful.

Baiting the Squad Center – Attacking

As superionrx said the “Squad center (SC) is the most powerful defensive weapon rebels have (and imps)” (click here). Nothing can stop an attack in its tracks like a squad center full of snipers. While your heavies are 7 spaces away from the shield, the snipers sit 10 spaces away from the heavies, comfortably under a shield. Your whole load out can disappear in seconds. So, how do you prevent that disaster? Baiting the squad center.

Once you’re in level 7, the vast majority of your opponents are in a squad, and so you have to assume the squad center is full. Even if the SC is undergoing an upgrade, there could still be troops inside. Troops that are in the SC when the upgrade begins, stay inside until they’re killed.

Bait – There are 3 troops I like to use as bait: a reg (Rebel Soldier), a Wookiee, and a pathfinder. Your goal is to get your bait to enter ring around the SC that will trigger the troops to be deployed. You do have to get fairly close. The ring is smaller than it appears to be in your own base map. Ideally, use the reg for bait because they’re cheap and most people have a few of them in their load out. I most often use the Wookiee as bait. The reason is that Wookiees will bypass all the buildings on the outer edge of the base and run toward the closest turret, which may be deep within the base. Pathfinders will do the same, but they go for resources. Resources are usually on the outside of the base, but sometimes they’re on the inside. Pathfinders are fragile, but they’re fast. Even though they die quickly, they can sometimes get to the middle of a base to trigger the SC in time before they fall.

Walls – Imps love to box their SC within walls. This prevents the SC troops to be baited and leave the walled area. I often use an X-wing to destroy the part of the wall that I want my bait to run through or that I want the SC troops to emerge from.

Walls destroyed closest to the squad center

Walls destroyed closest to the squad center

Wookiee trips SC and probe droids and stormtroopers come out.

Wookiee trips SC and probe droids and stormtroopers come out.

Shields – Shields can make it really hard to destroy the walls surrounding the SC. Even if there is a part of wall that is exposed, it may be far enough from the SC that even if the Wookiee ran through at that point, it wouldn’t make it to the SC ring. I usually skip bases where this is the case. This has actually become more difficult for Imps since the recent update that made shields smaller.

Squad center with shields covering walls.

Squad center with shields covering walls.

Traps – I’ve noticed some Imps have realized how we bait their SC and more importantly where we drop our SC bait. They are starting to put 1-2 traps right at the spot where you want to put your bait. So, when the spot to drop my bait is a little too obvious, I’ll drop a reg there first to set off the trap, and then I’ll drop my bait.

2nd Bait – Once the SC is triggered, the SC troops will lock onto what tripped it and tear it to shreds. It will then lock onto the next troop that is dropped and pursue it even if other troops are dropped. The best 2nd bait is a reg. The best is when there’s a building in a corner that the reg can work on. That will keep the bait in place and help destroy part of the base too.

In the absence of a building, I used to use a med in the corner. The med will stay still until an infantry is dropped. This is nice, but there are 2 problems. Once you do drop infantry, the med will had straight for your infantry and the SC troops will follow it. The other problem is that meds are valuable and 2nd bait can often be killed. I watched one of my squadmates use a reg as 2nd bait even though there wasn’t a building for it to target. The reg will jog toward the closest building, but you can usually kill the SC troops before they get to the reg.

Killing the SC troops – Once the 2nd bait has been placed and the SC troops have ran outside the main base area into the open, I use sharps to hit the SC troops. I use 3 sharps, but a lot of people use 1 or 2 without any difficulty. The worst situation is when the SC troops kill the 2nd bait before your sharps can kill them, and then your sharps are going head-to-head with SC troops. That can just ruin your whole attack. For me, this works about 95% of the time. Nothing works perfectly every time.

Rebel Sharpshooter

Rebel Sharpshooter

Placement of 2nd Bait – As I said, I most often place my 2nd bait at a corner building. I used to just pick whichever corner was furthest away from the SC so I had plenty of open space to kill them. The problem is that once the sharps are done killing, they will go after the closest building to help destroy the base. Too often they were attacking from a side completely different than the rest of my troops. They were pretty much wasted for the rest of the battle. One of my squad mates suggested putting my 2nd bait in the same relative area that the rest of the troops would be deployed, and then the sharps can be part of the main force once they’ve killed the SC troops.

2nd bait placed where I want to start my attack.

2nd bait placed where I want to start my attack.

Heavies take out the probe droids while the probe droids are going after the bait.

Heavies take out the probe droids while the probe droids are going after the bait.

The Trouble with Sharps – Sharpshooters don’t always target what you want them to. They will go after any and all infantry before attacking the mech (MHCs, ATATs, probe droids). If you have probe droids surrounded by a dozen stormtroopers, the sharps could still be picking off stormies and the probe droid will have killed your 2nd bait. When I encounter probe droids, I usually use heavies to kill them. Also, Sharps see the droideka as infantry. Even if an MHC is coming out of the SC, they will ignore it if there’s a live droideka anywhere on the base.

Probe Droid

Probe Droid

HWK-290 – I always carry a HWK along with my X-wings. The HWK’s main ability is to take out infantry (not mech) over a large area (splash area = 2). My HWK is level 6, but it has no problem taking out level 8 troops. It doesn’t matter how many there are, it will wipe them all out. I have noticed it doesn’t always take all the troops out if the troops are in between buildings, so wait until they’re in the open. Also, it drops its bomb slowly, so be sure to aim for where they will be in a couple seconds.

HWK-290

HWK-290

ATAT in the SC – With the introduction of level 8, the SC could now hold 32 units, enough for an ATAT. The first time one popped out of an SC, I freaked out. I admit it. To make matters worse, Imps would surround their SC with buildings packed tightly and the ATAT couldn’t be baited to move anywhere. With the recent update to the ATAT, it can now be baited even if there are buildings in the way. In this case, I will place my 2nd bait on the complete opposite side of the base and I usually don’t worry about killing it. The ATAT is so slow, I’ll go ahead and start attacking the base, and I’ll be mostly done before the ATAT kills the 2nd bait and makes it back to the rest of my troops. Its slow speed is its biggest weakness. If I do want to kill it, sharps or heavies will knock it out in no time. X-wings have little effect on an ATAT. The target to actually hit it is small, and even if you do hit it, it will take 3 X-wings to kill the ATAT.

ATAT walking through a base

ATAT walking through a base

Please add your comments to share your own strategies to deal with squad center troops.

Luke is a beast! Attacking with Luke – 3/2015

Luke is a beast!!!  There are certain things in this game that are game changers.  The squad center (SC) is a game changer.  Getting Hails.  game changer.  But, luke is right on the same level as the SC in terms of importance, I think.  I’ve also only been using him for a little bit, but already I think he is awesome.  Don’t believe me?  See comments by Sith Dragon on the forums:  https://www.playdomforums.com/showthread.php?199697-Defending-against-Luke/page2

Now, the tough thing about luke is knowing when to deploy him and also when to use his lightsaber.  I’ll talk about what I’ve learned so far.  I may update later, as I think I’ve only seen some of the different ways to use him.

Luke’s main advantage is defeating burst turrets or deflecting anything shooting a laser (i.e. sharp, ATAT, rapid fire turret).  Also, the rate that medic droids heal him is amazing.  I’m not sure what it is, but if you have a med attached to Luke, game over for the imp.  Therefore, given this advantage, Luke is a must on burst farms.  Kessen/sharp combo will work too if you have him leveled up.  But, Luke is also awesome, and I think gives an even better chance at 3 starring.  Even if it’s not a burst farm, he will still dominate.  You basically can always use luke, unless maybe you go up against a mortar farm.  Then, I’d either use chewie or Han.

Below is a picture of a standard deployment vs a semi-dominant burst turret base.  The key is dropping shields, but having luke lead the charge.  How do you do that?  This is how.  Drop heavies/meds first to clear buildings in front.  Then, drop sharps and hails in the back:

IMG_4836

 

Once some of the buildings are cleared, drop Luke.  Try to drop him either in line with the heavies or in front if possible at this point.  As soon as you drop him, attach a medic droid to him.

IMG_4839

IMG_4840

Since Luke is faster than the heavies, and has a shorter range than sharps or Hails, he will charge ahead with his med.  By this time your heaves should have either dropped the first shield or are about to.  Ideally, turrets will focus on him.  You have to watch his power closely at this point.  As soon as he gets to around 33% power left, activate the lightsaber.  Timing is key when they start firing, a bunch of level 8 bursts firing on him will drop his power quick.  Be ready to activate it.

As the base gets penetrated, I air strike as needed and drip in medics as needed.  But, in the middle of the battle, I also keep a close eye on Luke’s power.  Watch his ability to re-use his lightsaber again.  Once ready, he can activate it again when he gets fired on mid-battle.  See below:

IMG_4842

Notice how his power is down, then time for the lightsaber, round 2!

IMG_4844

 

 

The next series of pics shows how on a burst farm and an un-trippable SC filled with black droids, you can still come out with a 1 star and take all of his credits.  After reviewing this replay though, I think I would have done better from either the south corner to minimize exposure of turrets and give my heavies a better chance once luke went down.

With burst farms, it’s imperative you have luke lead.  So, different than the above base, I deploy luke with a medic droid first for burst farms, such as below:

IMG_4847

Then, while all hell breaks lose on Luke, I drop heavies to drop the buildings and shields.

IMG_4851

 

 

On this next series, this is how I used him to take down an un-trippable SC loaded with snipers.  Theoretically, this should also work against an ATAT in the SC, too.  However, I will preface that I still prefer bases that I can’t trip the SC.  If the base has a lot of credits or whatever you are looking for (i.e. alloy or contraband), then it’s worth attacking with Luke.  Otherwise, these bases are still skips.

Before deployment, it’s highly recommended to draw out the droideka and take it out first before dropping heavy/med/hails/luke.  Otherwise, your sharps/droideka will chase after the droideka on the other side of the base and not the SC troops.  After droideka is taken out, deployment is similar to the first attack set.  Drop heavies/meds/sharps/hails to clear buildings and drop shields.  It’s especially important to clear buildings first.  I’ll explain below.

IMG_4853

Then, deploy luke in the front or in line with heavies:

IMG_4855

After luke is deploywed, I would deploy the droideka.  Once the SC snipers come out, ideally, they start firing on luke.  Activate his lightsaber when he’s down to 33% again.  Timing is key with his power, as it can be drained very quickly.

IMG_4858

Then, as Luke is deflecting fire from the SC snipers, hopefully the heavies and your sharps and droideka are not clearing anymore buildings and have taken down at least 1 shield and are shooting shooting at the SC troops.

IMG_4861

 

Power of Luke.  There is no imp base that you should fear once you know how to use Luke.  The above examples are also him at level 7!!  Wait until I have him at level 8!  It will almost be unfair for the imps.  Haha.

 

 

Banthas 15 Minutes of Fame

With this weekend’s mini-tournament featuring banthas and dewbacks (the Imp counterpart), let’s focus on banthas a little bit.

The devs have long said that they wanted to bring balance to the units used for attacks. They’ve said that the overwhelming majority of troops used in Rebel attacks are med droids and heavies, and for good reason. Most other troops are useless in comparison.

With the recent client side update, they added the ability to buff or nerf individual troops without having to do more client side updates. This is a huge step in making the more useless troops useful once again.

Most Rebels rarely, if ever, use banthas. They used to be great at taking hits and knocking down walls.

Banthas do still have a 300% buff versus walls and moderate damage to other units. The best feature in their favor is their unit capacity. With a unit capacity of 2, let’s compare what 5 banthas would do compared to 2 heavies.

Against walls, it’s no competition. Banthas would do 8x the damage as the heavies, and that’s not counting the splash damage.

Even against shield generators, 5 banthas would do 1.5x more damage than heavies, and heavies have a 175% buff versus shields.

Against turrets, HQ, and resource generators banthas would do 2.7x the damage as heavies. Infantry and vehicles are a different matter. Heavies dole out twice the damage than the banthas. The heavies’ range of 7 is far superior than the 2 from banthas.

The individual health of each bantha and heavy is equal, but again the unit capacity makes the overall health 2.5x greater.

We have two squadmates (Porkins and iPadJuan) who have used banthas effectively in combination with, and not instead of, heavies. So, with this weekend’s mini-tournament featuring banthas, I’d encourage my fellow Rebels to take them for a spin.

Favorite Loadout

unittransportWith Chewie I use 8 heavies, 7 meds, 6 regs, 1 sharp, and 1 hailfire. I used to use more heavies and fewer meds, but it was taking too long to build my loadout. – King Dave

With chewie I go 6 regs 5 meds 9 heavies and jugg. – Half Breed

I go 4 heavies, 5 meds, 1 sharpshooter, 1 wookie, 4 regs, 1 jugg and 2 hails. Works best with Chewie but still works well with Leia. So if I’m really pushing the attack rate, I alternate between heroes. – Stevious

For Chewy I have been using: 1 jugg, 8 heavies, 5 meds, 3 regs and 1 sharp. – Archangel

I use chew, 13 hevs, 6 meds and 7 regs and do really well consistently. – Maverick

My load out on 96 troops is 12 fatsos (heavies), 5 docs (meds), 3 buckets (regs) and 1 slim (sharpshooter). On level 7, with 3 lvl 6 racks (barracks) and 1 lvl 7, and Chewy taking 4:30 secs to retrain, my troops are ready within 30 secs of Chewy popping out the oven. The 3 lvl 6 racks are loaded with fatsos, the lvl 7 has a fatso preloaded, then 5 docs, slim and 3 buckets. Once the heavy drops off, I add it to the back end, and the same with all the other troops. – iPadJuan