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Making good use of battle galaxies

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  • Making good use of battle galaxies

    This is most directed at Randy. When I'm a platoon leader, I've got a pretty good idea of the limitations, strengths, and operational requirements of Liberators and Reavers, but a Battle Galaxy is a bit of a different beast that I'm not too familiar with. What I'd like to figure out is how best to deploy one if I've got one within the platoon.

    Based on some of the back and forth I've already had with Randy, I'm guessing that the biggest limitation is that a battle gal is significantly more vulnerable to AA than a Reaver or Liberator. A Reaver can hit and run through heavy flak, and a Liberator can do that as well so long as they're prepared to tank a little flak, but a battle gal is too big and too slow to get out of dodge when heavy AA is present and doesn't have the up-front burst firepower that a Reaver rocket barrage or liberator barrage can bring to the field, meaning that in order to really be effective the Galaxy needs to be a constant presence. This could end up meaning that a Battle Gal is completely restricted from platoon level fights where AA is usually too thick.

    So where and how does one apply them? Are they best used as perimeter fire support, or in small (or AA-less) engagements? When heavy AA is present and the ground pounders can't keep it down, there must be a better option than just keeping the galaxy out of the fight!




  • #2
    Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

    I think you just hit the head of the nail; Battle Gals are too big, too slow, and too vulnerable in large scale battles. Furthermore the weapons afforded to the Battle Gal isn't really much in the realm of skull busting. I'm not a fan of the M60 Bulldog; too slow firing. If the Battle Gal had a respective version of the M40 it'd be the creme de la crop but the Battle Gal is terrible at engaging multiple targets which is a shame because its targeted by multiple enemies. Conversely how well does an A30 tear down infantry? I could imagine it'd be a better all around alternative . . . ?

    The Battle Gal could have it's uses in larger battles but it'd probably need to be a hit and run attack. Otherwise it just needs to stay aware of the battle space, both ground and air.

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    • #3
      Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

      This concerns me too. There are many engagements I would rather have more Reavers and long range Lib bombing than a battle Gal.

      To me, it seems to be better suited to running mop-up I.E. easy kills against many infantry that forgot to bring AA. Something the Liberator can also do, although Gals get two guns and if light AA turns up can stick around for longer.

      If a large A2A fight starts they can be useful because they constantly chip away at armor instead of burst firing. However, you also need lots of Reavers to distract the enemy, otherwise they just focus fire the Gal.



      |TG-Irr| MrJengles - You know you want to say it out loud.

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      • #4
        Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

        Every time I've run a battle Galaxy it has been an ad hoc affair when the PL just wants me to hang around as transport and there happens to be a gunner available to provide overwatch. You can rack up some kills watching choke points and spawns like that, but it is not sustainable above a certain enemy population.

        A Galaxy's primary defense is its HP - an overeager ESF will plow right into you if you nose up and elevate at the right moment. But it takes a steely hand on both guns and stick to use it properly - knowing when to hold course/keep firing, and when to dodge/bug out. I'm not sure what the dev intent is with the Galaxy, but if they are not going to add some more A2A capability, it will remain of limited utility outside of small engagements.
        In game handle: Steel Scion
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        • #5
          Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

          Unlike the Sunderer it is wholly a transport vehicle. They know they need to give the Gal more features but they don't know what they can do that wouldn't change the balance of the game too much. AMS Gals would be terrible without the proper checks and balances.

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          • #6
            Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

            I wouldn't say that a battle Gal is any more vulnerable to AA than any other aircraft, it just deals with it differently. With max level flak armor and a lot of hit points, I can basically sit there and laugh at flak (from a single AA max for instance, not so much from a tower gun), at least for a little while, and often long enough to take out the offending AA Max. I can even sit there long enough to take a single tower AA gun down to less than half health until I need to peel off for repairs (then friendlies can finish him off).

            Flak doesn't really bother me unless there really is a lot of it (enemy platoon+ size forces and/or lots of AA guns like tower or amp station). And in those cases, any sort of air is very limited. The biggest thing I am scared of are enemy Libs above me (second only to blueberry Reavers, of course! lol).

            However many of the points are well noted. Battle Gals are not primary attacking weapons at all, Reavers and Libs are. But Gals can transport troops, and then provide them with some very powerful airborne close support vs. infantry and the occasional light vehicle. This is where they really shine, as airborne infantry transport and support. Great for responding to that ghost capping squad across the map, or in smaller engagements. Or in the absence of a lot of enemy air / AA they can really do war crimes against infantry on the ground. Also great for quickly moving infantry squads up onto high ground not otherwise easily accessible (the cliffs of SE Indar for instance). I would like to see more usage of the Gal to transport squads under fire from point to point in even large engagements, or doing hot drops. CML do a lot of hot drops, and they are not really a big outfit. But many times a well timed drop of theirs (often only a squad or two) on a crucial objective (a point or shield gen) have turned the tide of a battle. As infantry transportation, flying is so much faster than going on the ground. Of course, there are drawbacks (lack of traditional spawns) which can be countered (to a point) by bringing medics, good squad cohesion and using a squad beacon. I like to insert infantry directly on the roof of a tall building, where they can deploy their beacon (relatively) safely and use the high ground to gain fire superiority, before moving on to the objective. Also the new walled bases on Esamir seem like they might be another good application (caveats about Reaver support and battle size considered).

            I would be happy to be on call any time you are PLing and want to try out any of these tactics.

            As others have pointed out above, the Gal is not the best as a straight weapons platform. But it is great when integrated with other units (I suppose that could be said about any vehicle, really). However it is so much fun doing airborne infantry. When we do those kind of platoons, everyone always has a lot of fun and I get constant requests to pull the battle Gal by people who want to gun. It may not be the most effective in all situations, but no tactic or vehicle is. I mostly fly them because it is fun for me and suits my skill set (I am not good enough to fly a Reaver, lol).
            "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw



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            • #7
              Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

              Airborne assaults are sadly underused or mostly abused. The insertion method of direct drop on targets is excellent. I've seen Gals drop whole squads on an enemy armored group/SundererAMS leading to a quick devastating action that shifts an entire battle. I love the Airborne group and think Platoon level Airborne actions should be attempted more. The caveat is that often times as such a group is so niche and so lacking in long term logistics they normally seem to be the better when used in a large battle with already clear battle lines and supply(AMS) lines or when such an attack overwhelms the present defenders.

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              • #8
                Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                An idea just came to me to drop an engy (or LAs) or 2 (or 3?) on a known sundy location from flight ceiling. You could drop from closer, but from ceiling they wouldn't even see you coming. Could easily steer to land on top of Sundy and before they probably even saw you, BOOM!
                "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw



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                • #9
                  Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                  A slightly more cohesive version of drop podding on a Sunderer, and doesn't need a nearby squad beacon. Yeah, I could see that working!

                  The big problem I'm seeing here is that these days (at least when I'm PLing) running into enemy platoons isn't an uncommon occurance, which negates the Galaxy as an infantry close support platform. However, I suspect that a Galaxy could get in and out of an infantry LZ in one piece if it wasn't engaged by enemy air assets. With a disciplined squad that won't leave the gal pilot waiting to take off under fire, you could probably do some interesting rapid manuevering.

                  One of the stints as PL I did saw Jengles running an infantry squad providing supporting fire but he was able to do pretty much exactly that by bringing in a Gal from warp gate. He was able to relocate to a fire support location on the big rock by XenoTech labs due to just temporarily pulling a Galaxy. Some of the later cliff hopping we did on SE Indar--effective as it was--might have benefited greatly by having Galaxies to ferry us around instead of just walking everywhere. It might be interesting to run one or more squads in a platoon as airborne infantry just to take advantage of that kind of flexibility.



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                  • #10
                    Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                    Originally posted by Randy_Shughart_ClwFL View Post
                    Also great for quickly moving infantry squads up onto high ground not otherwise easily accessible (the cliffs of SE Indar for instance). I would like to see more usage of the Gal to transport squads under fire from point to point in even large engagements, or doing hot drops. CML do a lot of hot drops, and they are not really a big outfit. But many times a well timed drop of theirs (often only a squad or two) on a crucial objective (a point or shield gen) have turned the tide of a battle. As infantry transportation, flying is so much faster than going on the ground.
                    CML are masters of transport under fire. If anyone has the opportunity to ride with them (and can keep up), I highly recommend it. You'll learn a lot about squad cohesion and battlefield mobility.
                    In game handle: Steel Scion
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                    • #11
                      Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                      As a battle gal gunner and pilot I've had great success with gals in a lot if situations. One I can remember with Emale, me flying him gunning, was us attacking an amp station on amerish that had platoon sized defense. There mistake was seeing us and saying that gal only has 2 of 12. There was only a hand full of AA and they concerned themselves with us only if we got in direct line of sight. The lay out made it so the enemy had to run across the open area between spawn and the amp station it's self. I was making passes by this area and Emale was getting kills as I cut across there path. There were mountains in 2 directions we used as cover to repair and I had repaired a number of times and we operated for quiet awhile before crashing due to a frame rate spike I had when I got to close to the amp station gun tower. Another funny thing we had to deal with was a magrider which was sneaking around the legs of the amp station. If he hadn't of been a good driver we would have killed him but we were able to harass him enough to let allied force get to the amp station on foot.

                      So to address your concerns about the gal it's really about looking at a situation and asking your self will it get focused and do I have good pilots and gunners.

                      Me and randy have had very good runs in a gal. I've seen my KDR as high as 30 kills for every one death. But at the same time it's been just the opposite. I would say if you want to see when to use them than just use them. They will work or not. Which can be said about any vehicle in the game.

                      If you need a gunner or pilot I am available. My gal has the same air frame as Randy's and my guns are close to his. I don't have 10K plus like him but I'm around 8K.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                        The galaxy as a tank.

                        Yesterday I was flying trying the burster-galaxy strategy; having a galaxy full of bursters to bait enemy air, and then drop the galaxy to drop them.

                        WHile doing this (pop was low though), I noticed we were being very helpful in the battle in a way I hadn't forseen.

                        Often we'd be able to stay over the battle for a long time (flak armor). My gunners we actively spotting with voip and the UI. Now I don't think the UI spotting is very useful to friendlies, because I think it only shows enemies on the map for people close to you. But we were tanking a lot of damage, from ranges where I could retreat and duck behind terrain to repair. We were reasonably safe behind our lines against chasing air due to all the maxes.

                        When we were tanking this damage my gunners were also lighting up the targets (most effectively, the F5 basilisk at range). SO the enemies were being revealed and distracted by their own fire and ours. A pattern seemed to arise where we take damage, and friendly bluefor (smurfs; inf, reavers, harassers, armor) would eventually get to and take out the enemies exposing themselves.

                        Thinking as an RTS fan, the galaxy can serve in various ways to tank damage, reveal and distract the enemy. Enemies on both ground and air will even change their movement patterns to kill you, further weakening them.

                        What we did regularly e.g. was hover over skyguards, taking buttloads of fire, whilst the two reavers by then in the squad lined them up and finished them off with ease; as the skyguard was stationary, and shooting at the only target that could hardly kill him and hardly be killed.

                        I, RTS games all kinds of tactics and skills will be deployed to force the enemy to attack the units that have a tanking role instead of the weaker units that have high damage output.

                        If the galaxy is used in this way the goal is to take damage effectively; in such a way that it enables the friendly forces to be more effective.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Making good use of battle galaxies

                          I like that. Galaxies are such Big Fat Targets (tm) that most enemies can't restrain themselves from taking potshots at them, despite them literally being the hardiest target in the game. Man, it'd be nice if they had something like long-range artillery so they could fight from a standoff position...

                          And the Galaxy "burster surprise" tactic is also hilariously effective. I ran with AACE once when they were doing this, and a single squad full of bursters and a couple medics/engineers were able to bait and then destroy dozens upon dozens of enemy aircraft... some of them before we'd even hit the ground. After about an hour of doing this the Vanu had completely run out of air resources and essentially ceded air superiority on the continent. I dunno how viable this is now that Bursters aren't quite so dangerous at range, but it's still a tactic with a combination of cheekiness and effectiveness that fills me with warm fuzzies. :)



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