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Manta Missile Destroyer

 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2005 9:32 pm 
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Well, a Manta, as you know, isn't just seen in Epic.

In BFG (a scale in which there are plenty of BIG guns to use when shooting at Mantas - and everything else, for that matter...) 1 Manta can take the place of an entire squadron of other races' bombers - and gets a 4+ invulnerable save to boot!

Also, the Manta is a spacecraft - and with the advent of ships such as the Lar'shi and the Qath'fannor, the Tau are fully capable of providing sufficient armour (likely using lighter, yet sturdier materials in construction than the Navy) and shielding (including a deflector which gives the same protection as a Navy ship's armoured prow) to protect their space assets. Given the Manta's crucial role in planetside and space-based operations, I'd imagine that the Fio ensure that it's as well protected a vehicle as they can make it!

The Manta should at least be 8 DC, in my view.


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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2005 2:52 am 
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Quote (Hena @ 19 Nov. 2005 (19:11))


I'm playing in epic with Tyranids. So bear with me if this has been conversed to death here, ok.

The manta has been covered extensively - but all questions are welecomed.


Manta Missile Detroyer. It says following in the description in WIP4.2.5.

I thought it was worth noting that the WIP 4.2.5 descriptive text is the same as CS's 4.3.1...

Instead of Titans, Tau make use of small spacecraft as heavy support units to their battle lines. Fighting so close to the surface, the greatest part of their energy must be expended to keep them airborne, so they are not capable of fast manoeuvres once they are committed to ground combat.
The ubiquitous Manta Missile Destroyer is the most commonly used of these, and can be employed as transport craft to land troops as well as dedicated support craft.

I'm sure your aware that you've not quoted our full descriptive text - correct?

If that is desctiption then why is as heavy as Warlod Titan?

I see. You've based your question on a false pretence. That is not our description - not our full description anyway... you've chosen to quote a fraction, less than half even, of the text in our description to base your focus and present your comment.

Eg. same armour and same amount of DCs. I would think that Tau does not use heavy armour similar to Humans in general.
You would have to read the full description to gain a full appreciation for the armor and DC on the vehicle. The manta is far larger than any warlord and is used to engage much larger spacecraft for example. By size alone, even if it was armored as a sentinel - it could just absorb an astronomical amount of damge by comparison to a warlord class ground based war engine. In actuality, it deserves more DC than a warlord in E:A, but for points and balance concerns, it was dropped artificially to 8 DC.

How about dropping the DC amount to 5 or 6? Then it would be about the same toughness as Reaver.

IMHO there is no basis for this recomendation.

If the proposed was from a concern of balance and playability, then I'd suggest that you playtest some games against the piece. I'll submit to you that the piece is working and on the verge of being too suseptable to damage in playtesting that has happened thus far.

I think before a recomendation can be made, it should be based upon _more_ than our fluff description alone.

I think recomendations should come from balance, playtest, and the role its designed for while staying true to as much of its history as possible.

However, if a recomendation is going to be suggested and based _solely_ on the fluff description, I would encourage you to at least base it upon our _FULL_ fluff description. This will also afford the opportunity to fully appreciate the vehicle's history, capabilities, and role.

For reference, here's the larger amount of the text that you left off in your quote:

Its firepower is withering and easily a match for the largest Imperial Titans or Ork Gargants, as it sports a pair of Heavy Railcannons as main armament, as well as Heavy Ion Phalanxes, scores of heavy Tracer Missiles and smaller defence
weapons for close range.

This is where the weapons arsenol is discussed.

The Manta is also widely employed in space engagements as bomber craft, where it mainly
relies on its Tracers and guided munitions fired by its Heavy Railcannons to damage enemy ships, hence its
designation as ?Missile Destroyer?.

Unlike any warlord, this is where its space role is discussed as Nerroth mentioned.


In addition to its impressive armament, the Manta can transport a full fighting Cadre with support vehicles into battle
and deploy them under heavy covering fire.

This describes its combined focus of massive armorment with full fighting cadre deployment.


It is heavily constructed with reinforced armour and even has a powerful deflector shield (akin to those installed on the major Tau Spacecraft) to absorb incoming fire.
This describes the deflectors presence and notes that it comes from even larger dedicated space craft.

From the full description of the vehicle, we most definitely are working to perform its role - as described.

If the Manta's survivability when compared to the warlord is your overall concern - fluff and description aside, I'll submit the following in effort to satiate such concerns:

1) Like the warlord you are comparing the it to, the Manta does have 4+ armor and RA. However, the Manta _does not_ have Thick Rear Armor like the warlord does. This makes it more suseptable to crossfire.

2) The Warlord also has 6 Void Shields. The Manta has a deflector. The Warlord can negate the first 6 hits to it, regardless of what they are. These hits do not generate blast markers. The Manta's Deflector does not afford it this luxury. The first 6 hits to a manta very well may damage it. Even if the deflector was to work against the first 6 hits - each deflected shot still causes the manta a blast marker. Therefore, a Manta will break much easier than a Warlord due to a much higher susptability to blast markers. Note: once broke, a Manta does not have an an initiative 1 - nor can it have a free commissar - like the warlord does and can, a manta has an initiative 2 which makes it that much harder for a manta to rally once broken.

3) Due to the 6 void shields vs. the deflector, this means one must focus a very significant amount of fire power on the warlord to even have a chance to damage it. You have to at least fire 7 shots at it - all in the same turn if you want a chance to even hurt it on turn 1. These shield can also willfully be regenerated by the controlling player. So if the player wishes, he can make the Warlord a very hard nut for you to ever have an opportunity at cracking! The Manta has the deflect as already noted, it has a chance of being damaged with every shot one takes at it. Furthermore, the Deflector is almost useless against the majority of shots in the game that can be fired at it - AT. It does get progressively better vs. MW and then TK - but that means something with a massive amount of AT fire or even MW fire can really do a number on a manta. Even at best, a Mantas deflector will only deflect 50% of the toughest shots. So the net result is a mantas save will be somehting like:
AT:  Armour 4+, RA 4+, Inv 6+
MW: Armour --, RA 4+, Inv 5+
TK:  Armour --, RA --, Inv 4+

4) In Close Combat, the are both WE and have certain luxuries afforded to them. However, the warlord has a 2+ close combat and a 3+ Fire Fight value. The Manta has no close combat value and must always Fire fight. The Mantas FF value is 5+. This means the Manta has a fraction of the chance that a warlord does in close combat. This makes the role of troop delivery, or even planet fall, a risky proposition for the Manta.

5) A warlord also has Titan Stepping and Walker so it can navigate the most difficult of terrain very well. In doing so, it allows it to receive hull down from terrain. This means the enemy can shoot at the warlord, but will receive -1 when the titan gets into cover. Even if the titan only does that 10% of the time - the Manta never has that option due to the very negative Support Craft Rule.

6) A warlord, although big, can hide behind an LOF blocking piece of terrain. That means all of the enemy's army cannot always draw a LOF to the warlord. Even other WE block LOF to the warlord. A Manta will always be seen by every one of the enemy's formations, every activation, of every turn - it can never hide - another negative of the Support Craft Rule. The other points above aside even - a vehicle that can ALWAYS be seen by the entire enemy army has a very serious inherent weakness. It has such a weakness that there is some concern that it might be too great in fact. Support Craft rule may vanish as a result.

If the comparable survivability of a Manta vs. a Warlord is your actual concern, you needent worry, from many playtest games, we know the Manta has a net lower potential survivability than the Warlord.

Ironically considering the basis of your recomendation, from a fluff or 'real world' perspective (if that can be said for a make believe game) - the Manta should probably out last the warlord significantly as it would move much faster than 20cm compared to the warlords 15cm. It has been artifically diminished for game play balance again. One could expect it to just fly higher and exit the atmosphere where the Warlord could only trudge along the battlefield at a very slow pace should things become unquestionable dangerous for either.

Hope that helps and addresses your concern Hena,

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2005 8:11 am 
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Hena,

The 'lifting off' concept seems interesting, but why would we do that?

I don't know that there's a problem that 'lifting off' would solve.

besides, I think there's a problem of allowing someone to remove the BTS victory condition from the field.

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2005 11:39 am 
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Quote (Tactica @ 20 Nov. 2005 (01:52))
4) In Close Combat, the are both WE and have certain luxuries afforded to them. However, the warlord has a 2+ close combat and a 3+ Fire Fight value. The Manta has no close combat value and must always Fire fight. The Mantas FF value is 5+. This means the Manta has a fraction of the chance that a warlord does in close combat. This makes the role of troop delivery, or even planet fall, a risky proposition for the Manta.

Just a quick point, Tactica, but this does mean that the Manta is better off when assaulted by CC specialist units, as they tend to have a poor FF value - whereas, against the Warlord, they'd be able to take full advantage of their abilities. In both cases, a base-to-base unit circumvents the shields of the WE, but I'd say the Manta is still defensively better off in this situation.

It's all theory, but I hope you can see what I mean.

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2005 5:59 pm 
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D,

I understand your point.

I agree that its all theory.

I would further add that the warlords stats are better so would fair better than the manta in FF.

As well, I acknowledge that there are plenty of combat units which are deadly in b-t-b - those specific units would do better against the warlord against the manta, but the warlord would also do better against them than it would if it was fighting them in FF as its stat goes to 3+.

I would hope you would also agree that there are plenty units in E:A that are better in FF than they are in cc - and all of these would do better against the manta than they would the warlord.

However, this is meerly 1 of 6 points I brought up.

Even if someone were to hypothesize that the Manta was somehow equal or better than a warlord in combat against the gambit of units in EA on average - which I would disagree with - the other 5 points still stand.

Regardless though, the auther of the thread made a suggestion to a unit based upon a fraction of the description of the unit. I tried to address that.

My additional 6 points are meerly speculation on what his actual point may be.

Cheers,

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 12:14 pm 
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2)The Warlord also has 6 Void Shields.The Manta has a deflector.The warlord can negatethe first 6 hits to it,regardless of what they are.These hits do not generate blast markers.The Mantas deflectors do not afford this luxury.The first 6 hits to a Manta may very well damage it.Even if the deflector was to work against the first 6 hits - each deflected shot will cause a blast marker.Therefore, a manta will break much easier than a Warlord due to a much higher susptability to blast markers.


Does the Manta still recieve BMs if the deflector shield saves any attacks as it is not stated in the tau army list that this is what happens.





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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 12:46 pm 
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Quote (dptdexys @ 22 Nov. 2005 (12:14))

2)The Warlord also has 6 Void Shields.The Manta has a deflector.The warlord can negatethe first 6 hits to it,regardless of what they are.These hits do not generate blast markers.The Mantas deflectors do not afford this luxury.The first 6 hits to a Manta may very well damage it.Even if the deflector was to work against the first 6 hits - each deflected shot will cause a blast marker.Therefore, a manta will break much easier than a Warlord due to a much higher susptability to blast markers.


Does the Manta still recieve BMs if the deflector shield saves any attacks as it is not stated in the tau army list that this is what happens.

I think, at least for coming under fire, if it don?t takes any damage why would it take any other?

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 12:52 pm 
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I understand that it would get a BM for coming under fire but Tactica states that the Manta is easily supressed by BMs as it recieves them even if the deflector shield saves an attack.


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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:02 pm 
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Quote (dptdexys @ 22 Nov. 2005 (12:52))
I understand that it would get a BM for coming under fire but Tactica states that the Manta is easily supressed by BMs as it recieves them even if the deflector shield saves an attack.

I think he is referencing to the amount of attacks (6) wich a Warlord can withstand without getting hurt and per Void Shield rule also don?t accumulate BM as they go down. In contrary to the Deflector which is no guarantee of getting no damage, but counts against generating BM?s.

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:11 pm 
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Quote (Tactica @ 20 Nov. 2005 (01:52))
2) The Warlord also has 6 Void Shields. The Manta has a deflector. The Warlord can negate the first 6 hits to it, regardless of what they are. These hits do not generate blast markers. The Manta's Deflector does not afford it this luxury. The first 6 hits to a manta very well may damage it. Even if the deflector was to work against the first 6 hits - each deflected shot still causes the manta a blast marker. Therefore, a Manta will break much easier than a Warlord due to a much higher susptability to blast markers. Note: once broke, a Manta does not have an an initiative 1 - nor can it have a free commissar - like the warlord does and can, a manta has an initiative 2 which makes it that much harder for a manta to rally once broken.

In this quote tactica states that even if the Deflector shield saves all 6 attacks it will still recieve 6 BMs


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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:18 pm 
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What I want to know is if the deflector shield saves still causes a BM as it is not stated in the tau list that they do.

In tacticas post he states that this could cause the manta to break easily,which would indeed make tacticas argument very vallied but if it is not played that way then it would invalidate one of tacticas arguments.


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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:21 pm 
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Quote (dptdexys @ 22 Nov. 2005 (13:18))
What I want to know is if the deflector shield saves still causes a BM as it is not stated in the tau list that they do.

In tacticas post he states that this could cause the manta to break easily,which would indeed make tacticas argument very vallied but if it is not played that way then it would invalidate one of tacticas arguments.

So be it this way. Yes , the Manta would recieve 6 BM after 6 Attacks saved or not by the Deflector, without counting any further BM for receiving Damage. Hope , this answers your question.

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 Post subject: Manta Missile Destroyer
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 3:32 pm 
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Mmmm,
So if a Warlord fired at a Manta and got the following :-

6hits from TLD + 2 from GB then another 1 hit causing 2TK damage with the VC.

The manta would recieve 10 BMs + 1 for coming under fire even if it saved all the hits via its deflector shield.

Also does the deflector shield saves come before or after armour saves,technically it should come before but as it is classed as an invulnerable save it should come after.


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