Sunday, March 1, 2015

Enter The Spider: Relthoza First Impressions

Hi all! SeerK here once again.  It has been a very busy couple of weeks and I apologize for the lack of updates.  I have been scrambling trying to get painting projects done.  The guys and I have also been working on terrain and tables for The Schaumburg Prime Offensive at Adepticon.  We finished the last of the tables today despite the cold.  It is kinda sad when you are waiting for the temperatures to get into the mid 20's to paint.  This is what classifies and "warmer" here in Michigan as of late.

We also had a Primer tournament last weekend which had a decent turnout.  We even had a fellow Vanguard drive from Wisconsin to test his mettle against our local players.  he brought a very nicely done pathogen fleet and got in a bunch of games.  It will be great to see him again at Adepticon.  I actually got to play in the Primer event and actually took 3rd.  I did not field my RSN though.  As near and dear as the RSN is to me, they have not been performing well for me.  To everyones surprise, including my own, the fleet that has been really kicking ass and taking names for me as of late has been the Relthoza.

I know what you are thinking.  The Relthoza? Really?  SeerK aren't known for just charging blindly into battle like Leroy Jenkins?  The answer to all those questions is yes.  My play style is very hammer and anvil.  The Ba'Kash, Dindrenzi and Terrans generally fit my style of play.  I was just as shocked as Spellduckwrong when I cleared the table of his  Pathogen fleet the first time I took the Relth out for a spin.  I was using a pretty strait forward basic Relthoza fleet.  I have a patrol fleet box plus a cruiser box and a frigate box, so I have not played with some of the more unique ships in the fleet.  I thought I would share some of my impressions after getting in a few games in.

At first glance the Relthoza can be a bit confusing.  They have very long range torpedo weapons with very close range primary weapons.  My first assumption was that they pepper the enemy with torpedoes then close the distance and engage with their primary weapons.  I was corrected by several Relth players that told me they have to be played "cagey", that is they are not that great close in and you avoid combat and pick apart your opponent at range.  You use your stealth systems and cloaking shields to keep you safe from harm.  Still other players said you must slam into the enemy fast and hard and use the close range weapons to obliterate the enemies ships.

After mush thought I realized all of these points were valid and must all be used in conjunction with one another.  I have taken on the mentality of a hunter when using my Relth.  I stalk my prey and learn about it.  I test it and find its weaknesses and then exploit them.  I then lure my target in and pounce upon it.  It almost as if the Fluff in the Zenian League Fleet Manual is a guide to how the Relthoza should work.  I will elaborate, The Stealth Systems and Cloaking Shields protect the Relthoza ships at range and from what I have noticed, from the dozen or so games I have played with them, they really frustrate my opponents.  I am not usually very patient when I play.  It has always been a weakness of mine.  Patients is the real key to the Relth.  Not so much you being patient, but making your opponent loose their patients.  I have had great success luring ships into striking distance by staying cloaked and keeping just far enough away to make sure the stealth systems are forcing those hit re rolls.  It has allowed me to control the flow of the game.

Game flow control and forcing your opponent to come to you seems to be the real trick to using the Relthoza.  Limiting target choices and misdirecting target priority means you can control where the enemy weapons go and also by proxy controls where ships are going to position themselves.  Decloaking one ship in a squadron can draw fire from the others.  Presenting easy targets helps you get the alpha priority targets into the proper position for your Heavy hitter to do their work.

I am still trying to figure out the Relthoza on the ground.  We have not been able to get in a lot of Planetfall games yet with all the tournament preparation.  I have a feeling the lessons I have learned out in space might help me on the ground.  I have to say I do have some favorites in the fleet though.  The Huntsman Heavy cruisers have been MVP's in just about every game I have played.  They have been working the best when I keep them in reserve and battle shunt them into play.  They are very robust and have been very hard to kill.  They tend to draw a lot of fire and this allows me to get the rest of my fleet into lethal range.  I am also a fan of the Nidus frigate.  Although they are not as tough as the Drone Frigates they do have weaponry in 3 arcs and can carry a wing.  You can engage several targets and with an SRS token with up to 4 wings strong you can do a lot with the squadron.  You can get a big point defense bubble with interceptors.  Bombers are great to give the squadron a one two punch.  My personal favorite is assault shuttles.  4 assault shuttles gives you 8 AP, which is pretty good for taking capital ships.  You can target defensive systems on larger vessels and leave them open to attack by your other vessels.

I am going to be picking up some more ships.  I want to try out the battle cruisers and the Battle Station. I have used the Relth TAC that allows you to shunt a squadron to within command distance of  your Admirals vessel.  Its a nice bait and switch tactic to lure large vessels into a kill zone.  being able to bring a Battle Station into the fight from across the table is pretty cool.

Well thats all for now.  I am continuing my journey along the path of the spider.  I have been mixing in some Ba'Kash with great success and I will be reporting on that in the not to distant future.  I am hoping to get a couple more posts in before the big show at Adepticon.  We are once again sold out and the event is shaping up to be pretty cool.  I hope to see you all there.  If you are looking for anything in the way of Firestorm Armada product our resident merchant of all things gaming will have a lot of product on hand at the convention.  Look for him at the tournament and at bits trading night at the convention.  I guarantee he will have what you are looking for!

Until next time crush the Alliance and as always....


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