What formations do you find useful?

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What formations do you find useful?

Post by Orion_Steel » Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:21 am

I noticed enemy ship attacks usually comes from front if a colonized planet, or from the left if uncolonized or deep-space.

Therefore I have started to use a "left leaning slash" (tm) line formation.
Since top/left (closest) ship usually gets all the missile love, I use a PD or two, or even better if I have it a deflector CR or DN (#1). This is followed by heavy hitters (#2), followed by torpedo or other long range and CNC (#3).
The benefit of this formation is that I have a clear field of fire for my heavy beams, regardless of enemy ships being in front or to the left. As enemy pass through formation I get to use aft weapons which usually don't get much use in a static line vs line slugfest, and I find standing still is just inviting getting cooked by heavy beams.

Edit: Forgot to mention, if 2's and 3's have shields "passing through" enymy formation is excelent to give shields a chance to reset, while each passing ship can focus on same target and take it out quick (i.e. blazers, CNC, and gates)

A deflector DN in #1, and 2 broadside firing DNs with heavy beams (war section?) in #2 does quite well. !phwoar


Prior to this I used a dense hexagon, for maximum mutual fire support and missile defence, but I often blocked my heavy beams or torps (or took friendly fire).

What kind of formation do you find useful?
Last edited by Orion_Steel on Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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What formations do you find useful?

Post by Goomich » Sun Jan 06, 2013 3:38 am

Line for torps to have clean shot, with command and R&S ship far behind.

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Re: What formations do you find useful?

Post by ZedF » Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:39 pm

Absent Zuul, for typical cruiser strikeforce formations I usually do 3 ranks in a triangle shape with the command ship at the rear tip.

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In any case I typically stagger formation lines so that ships in rear ranks can shoot between their buddies in the previous ranks.
Zed's TARs (sample):
Fractious Allies -- Hiver vs. Hiver, with allies
Who Let The Bugs Out -- Hiver vs. Tarka and Zuul
Tarka Ascendant -- Tarka vs. Hiver and Zuul

Strategy & Tactics Forum Archive -- More posts on strategy, tactics, and TARs

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Re: What formations do you find useful?

Post by Orion_Steel » Wed Jan 09, 2013 1:20 am

Interesting, I used to (and occasionally still do) use the triangle formation as well, when I know / expect frontal assault (occasionally with front flank of minelayers to "swep infront" for planetary defence). In some way the checker board pattern of first two lines of triangle is similar to roman army checker formation, where my slash is similar to the Oblique Order / denied flank formation (both of which works well in Medieval Total War).

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Re: What formations do you find useful?

Post by Abyss » Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:20 pm

It depends on what I'm doing but I tend to keep most of my formations the same.

Standard formation for CRs and CnC will involve something like this with the CnC being in the back:

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But for Hivers, usually during gate/planet defense, I'll make two rows of ships with a bit of space in between. The reason being due to the overthrusting of the Hiver engines I used to have problems with them overshooting the enemy and not being able to make it back to the gate. Now I just have two stationary lines, usually when faced against overwhelming odds, and try to funnel them into the middle with two fields of fire. Works better with ballistics than beam weapons.

When attacking at a planet that is not a colony I tend to bunch up my ships (except when the enemy has emitters) and along the side where I think they'll be (usually the left) so that I don't have to spend the time turning my formation around.

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Re: What formations do you find useful?

Post by nickersonm » Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:28 am

I have found it easiest to simply use a double-row (like ZedF) with the CnC in the back, although with the shorter row in front. Rather than arranging in the formation editor, which leaves bonus-CP reinforcements out of it, I just split the default initial line.

This formation is useful for both brawler and fixed-beam ships; for kiting ships I'll just make a compact group or square from the line, but not really pay attention to formation besides generally being close together.

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Re: What formations do you find useful?

Post by Mightypeon » Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:48 pm

If I have some extra destroyers available, I will have somewhat defensive destroyers (shields, deflectors or disrupter shields if possible) zig zagging in front of my cruiser line at high speeds. The AI will attempt to get weapon lock, and will often miss the agile destroyers by quite a bit. Meanwhile, your own fleet can blast with comparable stationarity.

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