SeerK here to kick off the new look for the blog. The Waygate is official and will be bringing you coverage of Firestorm Armada, Planetfall, War Machine and Hordes and any of the other war games the authors currently play. We will be continuing with hobby and strategy articles as well and a little something new I like to call “Fluff Fridays”, where I begin to expand the Firestorm Armada universe for some narrative play and give a little background to our impending Firestorm Armada campaign.
Before all that though, I am continuing a series I started almost 2 months ago. The Ships of the Rense Navy. We continue by finishing off the Rense System Navy Tier 3 ships and starting with our Tier 2 ships. Last time we went over the Bulwark/Hellion Frigate. The workhorse of the fleet and vigilant guardians of Dramos. Today we are going to talk about the the all seeing eyes of the Federation. The watchers of watchers. The Siren/Harpy Escort. We then move into Tier two with the backbone of the Rense Navy, the Spook/Shrike Cruiser.
The Siren/Harpy is the only Rense Navy Escort available to the fleet. It is also usable by other members of the Zenian League. The crews assigned to the Siren are assigned the task of protecting their parent vessels from harm from within as well as without. Shooting down torpedoes with the same skill and precision as rooting out a potential traitor to the Federation.
The main function of the siren is to protect the vessel it is assigned to. With a point defense rating of 3 just one of these vessels can really enhance your flagships ability to shoot down torpedoes. The feature that makes it attractive for use for other fleets in the League is that it also has the Target Acquisition MAR. By making a successful command check you can give the parent vessel a +1 to hit with one of its weapon systems. The farther away the target is the more successes you need in your command check. You need an additional success for every full 8 inches the target is away from the firing vessel.
Additional sirens can assist the first, lowering the amount of successes you need by 1 per vessel. This can make it difficult at long range, but not impossible, especially with a Rense Navy ship or any ship with the Elite Crew MAR. Elite Crew makes it so command checks are passed on a 3+ rather than 4+.
The Target Resolution MAR makes the Siren really attractive to Dindrenzi Field Marshals. This is especially true when you have “The Eye Of Rense” tactical card in your hand. Automatically passing command checks in a turn when you have Sirens doing target calculations for your Nausicaa Battleship or even your Retribution Dreadnought really can help strike some fear into those Terran Dogs.
I personally like to run as many Sirens as I can with my Spectres Battleships and Banshee Dreadnought. Three is ideal as I am adding 9 point defense dice and making it so I can use Target Resolution on 3 different weapon systems if I so choose. It also ensures I get to use them as they tend to become targets pretty quickly once my opponent realizes what they do. Fleets that rely on torpedo cruisers and frigates will single out point defenses and vessels that help in point defense if they are smart. Hitting ships that are primarily reliant on other types of weapons should be hit first, thus rendering the torpedo based ships impotent.
Positioning your escorts is pretty important. You want to make sure they are withing command range to contribute their point defense against torps. Position is especially important when dealing with SRS tokens aka Bombers, Fighters and Assault Boats. You should be mindful of your opponents ships that carry Bombers and other small craft. Whether they are in play or docked you need to make sure your escorts are positioned in such a way that they may make point defense attacks on any token they may be sent on an attack run. For example, if a Terran Carrier is positioned off your port your escorts should reposition themselves to the port side of the parent vessel and close enough to be within 4 inches of any point on the parent ships base. You can also screen your larger ships with the escorts in this way against attack runs. Making it so the Escorts are the only viable targets. Firestorm Armada is a game that can be won or lost in the movement phase.
Well there you have it. The Siren/Harpy. Next time we crack into Tier 2 vessels. The Spook/Shrike is a lethal cruiser with dual roles in the Rense Navy. More on this versatile ship next time.
Until then.........Crush the Alliance and