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  • Planes Walker Squad

    So I have had an idea that I think might have some really good potential. The setup would be 5 Skygards and 7 AP Lightnings. That would be about the same amount of DPS as 4 fully harmed Vanguards would have depending on how certed out they are. This squad would be able to mostly move around behind enemy lines as they pleased.

    The Good
    The concentrated fire of 7 AP Lightnings should be able to kill a MBT in one volley. And while 2 Skygards are a pain, 5 are a lethal force of doom. Lightings are fast and have the best auto repair out of any vehicle in the game. Making this set up a powerful force that can do a lot of damage. They also bring more firepower than a full Harasser squad because of the lack needing two people per vehicle. Not to mention AP Lighnings are great at reaching out at far range. Makeing this effective for anything from CQB to sniper range with the latter one being preferred. The Lighnings have a lower overall profile than any other vehicle except the Flash. Also not to mention they are not super expensive and can be pulled from anywhere is a nice touch. Meaning that it is harder to kill the whole squad as there is more HP and that is it faster to pull and return to the fight. This would be particularly useful on Esimar as often we have to come from the warp gate with Vangards.

    The Bad
    You have 12 Lighnings. It can be a hard feat to keep 6 pieces of armor in good cohesion, let alone double that number with faster vehicles.
    Even though the total HP level of the squad is higher than most of our Armor squads, the average vehicle health is lower. And while most enemy vehicles can be one volleyed off the feild, mines and divebombing Liberators will have a much greater affect. The Skygards will have plenty of Ammo the AP Lighnings will need to grab Ammo ever once in a while. This set up would do great against the average group it ran into but wouldn't be able to hold out against say a full squad of Liberators. And unlike our normal Armor squad, this would have a much greater AA affect making retaliation almost a given. Moving and shooting in a Harasser is not a big deal where as moving and shooting in 7 Lightnings it much harder.

    With all of that said there are a few things we could try to nullify the bad and increase the good. Brining at least one Infil in a squad like this will be huge. Lost one of the Lightnings? No problem, just hack a new one from Any enemy armor terminal. Out of Ammo? No problem, just hack a quick use Ammo Sunderer from Any enemy armor terminal. Need to film an amazing vidoe of 11 Lightnings rolling into enemy Territory? No problem, just have your stocker cloaked Infil stand by and drive near him in full formation and flying colors. Okay so that last one is a little less useful but you get the point. The Lightnings are a good base to build off of and I think we have the coordination to do it. It still needs some fine tuning, but we will get there.

    Suggestions and feedback please.
    Last edited by MatthewDaManiac; 03-12-2015, 02:53 AM.
    "When attacking a stronger opponent, Attack swiftly and with full force at their weakest point— take them out before the can react, or Fall back and engage in guerrilla actions,” Spartan 117.

  • #2
    Re: Planes Walker Squad

    Big potential issue: you have 12 large, heavily terrain dependent vehicles that you need to get on target, and that will heavily impact theoretical DPS. Most battlefields simply wont have room to get 12 (or even just 7) lightnings on target simultaneously, and they'll all have differing sight lines that will obscure different targets and reveal different threats. One of the advantages of the 2 man Vanguard is that it's a single point of fire with two people doubling up on situational awareness, and being able to trivially coordinate to focus a considerable amount of firepower downrange.

    This same problem doesn't apply to massed Skyguards. Line of sight and physical separation aren't a huge problem for the job, though proximity makes it easier to focus fire. Five skyguards will maintain air cover strong enough to deter liberators well out of their engagement range. In fact, it might be overkill.

    For the AT work, though, I think you'll quickly start running into diminishing returns on the lightnings where you're not able to effectively bring the full force to bear except in the most open of environments. What might work better is to work them into fireteams, not unlike a Harasser wolf pack. They're harder to fire and maneuver on the move but are cheaper resource and manpower wise, and a 3-4 tank fireteam of AP lightnings is going to punch pretty hard.

    Then, if you're going to split into fireteams anyways, why not have three fireteams something like the following?
    • Flanking/sniping/bait/harassment mobile AP lightning element, maybe one Skyguard
    • Base of fire team with two AP Vanguards (acting as the anvil to the flanking team's hammer), or alternatively another flanking team that trades off with the other for base of fire role, maybe even bounding overwatch
    • Support team, three skyguards and an ammo sundy, takes up the rear. For added security you could swap a skyguard with an AP lightning to provide more firepower if a Harasser or enemy tank comes up on the support team; a group of skyguards has surprising close range anti-vehicle firepower, but they're still going to have a hard time downing tough or slippery opponents (or heaven forbid, tough AND slippery opponents like Magriders).



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    • #3
      Re: Planes Walker Squad

      You guys have it all. The idea is awesome on paper, and most of the pros / cons are covered.

      Since you talked about autorepair Matthew, I was thinking about stealth. But I've to admit that given the size and the noise of 12 lightnings, and the chaos they may bring, that's probably entirely useless. That's a huge con, it will draw a lot of attention and make that squad a primary target. You might want to only venture on known terrain and predefined paths.

      Starstriker, 5 SGs may sounds overkill at first, but if that setup is effective, more air will be pulled to counter it. 5 Liberators popping from nowhere escorted by AT ESFs is not an uncommon response at all.
      Also, small fireteams would absolutely work - I think it's mandatory. There's no point lining up 4 AP lightnings to face 1 to 2 threats. Their biggest advantage is to be mobile and get to the rear of other tanks, doubling their firepower, and saturating the enemy that will end up spliting fire.

      Yet, we still sometimes box ourselves during armor squads and often lose Vanguards because of poor placing. Moving together will be the greatest challenge :]

      Ba-dum-tss
      My life before TG http://stats.dasanfall.com/ps2/player/Cairbre
      Who cares about stats ? http://stats.dasanfall.com/ps2/player/Cairbr

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      • #4
        Re: Planes Walker Squad

        If we're maneuvering in fireteams stealth might still be viable. The lightning's speed and low profile lends itself to maneuvering below ridgelines and staying out of line of sight. Four lightnings with stealth might be able to better serve as a flanking element, even being able to get to close range. However, I generally run auto repair because it lets me keep my lightning on the move constantly, and that's ALSO a valuable thing for a flanking squad.

        It's probably all or nothing either way, though. Only part of the squad running stealth at best masks the force strength but still alerts the enemy to the general direction; only part of the squad having auto repair means you've got a really big risk of the non-AR lightnings taking damage and needing to stall the rest of the element.



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        • #5
          Re: Planes Walker Squad

          I first thought of using stealth as it can be huge, but then disagreed because of two things.
          • The Squad/Fireteam would only be a stealthy as the person with the lowest level of stealth.
          • Becouse of the nature of using Lighnings, brining a Rep Sunderer could be fatal to either the Sunderer (Becouse it is way higher than the Lightnings and would be spotted faster) or the group.


          This is not to say, don't bring a Sunderer with the main part of the group but not with the cutting edge so to speak. Also 4 full certed stealth Lightnings are truly amazing to use. They can kill most anything it 4 secondes with two volleys if I remeber correctly. And then just disappear. But that would work better on maps like Amerish instead of like Indar where auto repair might be better used. Becouse on the planes of Indar, a lightening will need more than just it base amout of health to live through a lot of the fights. But that's where having high Alpha attack and really good DPS come in handy. As you can dring down the enemy to a small size relatively fast compared to using Vangards or Harassers.
          "When attacking a stronger opponent, Attack swiftly and with full force at their weakest point— take them out before the can react, or Fall back and engage in guerrilla actions,” Spartan 117.

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          • #6
            Re: Planes Walker Squad

            Let's quickly look at what the Lighting has to offer compared to the Vangard.

            For one, it cost 100 less which means that one person, can pull two Lightnings in one go. Where as the Vangard seats two people so from a squad set up, they are both relatively easy to equip the full squad with certed out vehicles.

            The Lightning has 3,000 health compared to the Vangard's 4,000. But the Vanguard has a shield that has 2,000 health that can be activated at lest once a minute. So two Lightnings have 6,000 health compared to one Vangard having 4,000 health and 2,000 shield. So you are pulling roughly about the same amout of health either way. But the Health is the Vangard's strong suit, and we tide it with the Lightning. Interesting!

            The counter part to health is resistances. Here I will compare how the two stand side my side, with how much better one does a compared to the other and not just the base statistics. First if you look at the directional armor resistance, you will find that the Vangard has better overall resistance. The Vangard has a 3% better resistance to the front, a 7% better resistance from the side, and a 2% worse resistance from the back compared to the Lightning.

            Now on to the damage types. Becouse PS2 has to crazy system I can only repeat base resistance for this as they have two possible outcomes for the Vangard as it is just put somewhere on the MBT scale. Damage resistance is a value that can either decrease or increase incoming damage from various types of weapons. A resistance of 100% means the vehicle is not affected at all. A positive number means incoming damage is reduced by that percent. A negative number means incoming damage is multiplied by that percent, dealing extra damage.
            • C4 (Lightning -100%) (MBT -150% -125%)
            • Anti-Vehicle Explosion (Lightning -50%) (MBT -100%)
            • Heavy Machine Gun (Lightning 75%) (MBT 70%)
            • Light Anti-Vehicle Ordnance (Lightning 30%) (MBT 20%)
            • Armor Piercing Shell (Lightning -20%) (MBT -15% -13%)
            • Armor Piercing Machine Gun (Lightning 55%) (MBT 41% 43%)
            • Rocket Pods (Lightning 40%) (MBT 20%)
            • Liberator Cannons (Lightning -33%) (MBT -50%)
            • Vortex VM21 (Lighnings -14% -75% -200%) (MBT 8% -115% -190%)


            This points to the fact that Lightning have a distinct advantage over the Vangard when being engaging by air. And are better or equal when be engaging by anything except Armor Piercing types.

            Now on to damage. Grab a calculator or just take my word for it. Both the L100 Python AP and the Titan-150 AP are in the same damage type. The L100 has 533.33 DPS with out upgrades and the Titan-150 has 518.75 DPS without upgrades. That means the Lightning is out damaging the main gun of the Vangard and the Gunners seat of the Vangard dost a little less DPS than the Main gun. Which means two Lightnings will out damage a two persons Vangard. As far as upgrades go, it's not till the very last level of reload speed that the Vangard beats out the Lightnings DPS. With Reload spead 5 the L100 does 592.59 DPS while the Titan-150 does 592.85 DPS. Which in the long run is not a significant amount. But let me throw some quick numbers out there to show how this can be used in the battlefield.

            With two volleys of 7 Lightnings taking up 4 seconds, you can kill 4 and 2/3 harassers, 2 and 4/5 Lightnings, 2 and 1/3 MBTs. And this is from the front. As far as Shell travel time, the L100 travels 225m/s while the Titan-150 travels 275m/s.

            Now on to speed. I don't know, and I can't find that info anywhere. But if I remeber correctly the Lightning will travel 15KPH faster than the Vangard. Also, they are smaller which should mean they can travel where Vangards can't.

            So let's some this up. Lightnings are a more mobile and faster alternative to Vangards. They are better at fighting air and other vehicles at long range. While you can say you lose DPS quicker Becouse one lightning will die before one Vangard will, you must realize that is only if the Vangard has its shield, otherwise, the Lightnings will still out DPS the Vangard because of their onager time to kill both. And that's not to mention that the Lightning get their own Upgrade that while isn't as good as the shield will help to keep them alive longer. But because the Vangard seats two, you are trading firepower for ease of usability. But We are TG, I think we could use this to our advantage and use something that while takes more cowarnation, will pay out in the long run. There is still more I need to cover, but I'm tired of writing ATM.
            "When attacking a stronger opponent, Attack swiftly and with full force at their weakest point— take them out before the can react, or Fall back and engage in guerrilla actions,” Spartan 117.

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            • #7
              Re: Planes Walker Squad

              I have been assaulted by 2 AP lightnings simultaneously when in my lightning, and when in a Vangaurd. I think 3 AP lightnings would be sufficient to cover any realistic scenario without undue risk, 4 if you prefer backups. That leaves you with 8 people left, let's say 2 skygaurds, 2 walker harassers and a sunderer of your choice (2 if you don't need them gunned on the move)

              I'm not just throwing the harassers in because I'm biased, they can be used for scouting, and to lure enemies into a kill zone covered by the lightnings. the Skygaurds have the heavy AA capability, but lack the manueverability to survive heavy multi-directional bombardment, something the walker harasser does amazingly well at. So, the harassers scout, and in the case of aerial bombardment, fall back to aid the skygaurds in destroying anything that felt the need to defy the gods and fly.

              Light armor is very nimble and less expensive than Vanguards, not to mention the ability to field a lot more vehicles.
              MacKahan -- Mac-Kay-an In case you were curious. ;-)

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              • #8
                Re: Planes Walker Squad

                Originally posted by TonyMac View Post
                Light armor is very nimble and less expensive than Vanguards, not to mention the ability to field a lot more vehicles.
                Just keep in mind that this is really dependent on both terrain and attrition rates. More vehicles on Amerish (or heaven forbid, Hossin) can just be a traffic jam. Also, while individually less expensive, it's far more expensive overall to field 12 lightnings than it is to pull 6 vanguards with gunners.



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                • #9
                  Re: Planes Walker Squad

                  Originally posted by starstriker1 View Post
                  Just keep in mind that this is really dependent on both terrain and attrition rates. More vehicles on Amerish (or heaven forbid, Hossin) can just be a traffic jam. Also, while individually less expensive, it's far more expensive overall to field 12 lightnings than it is to pull 6 vanguards with gunners.
                  In terms of total number of resource points, correct. So more expensive for the squad. I would put forth the argument, however, that in a vanguard-heavy squad up to 50% of the squad is not contributing resources, so you're losing them anyway. With any semblance of conservative tactics, you should be able to keep the squads described above moving indefinitely, and deal a significant blow to any opposing force. I think you'd be using the squad's total pool of resources more efficiently, since the game employs a "use it or lose it" system.

                  Also, if the terrain cannot handle a group of coordinated lightnings, it certainly cannot support the use of Vanguards as anything more than reactionary lone-wolf vehicles. I would not recommend the use of armor in such a situation, ambush tactics with mines, mana turrets and a bait vehicle would be my choice in those regions.

                  A side note, a fairly capable lightning is an investment, but nearly so staggering one as a vanguard. That makes it much more likely that such a squad could be constructed, as all of the lightning weapons (even the default) are generally capable against multiple threats.
                  MacKahan -- Mac-Kay-an In case you were curious. ;-)

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