Zuul advice needed

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WarpObscura
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Zuul advice needed

Post by WarpObscura » Mon Aug 05, 2013 5:05 am

1. What techs should I rush to get?

2. What's a good early-game strategy?

3. Assault Shuttle, Scavengers or Wraith Abductors?

4. Is it worth rushing to a Suul'ka?

Iejir_Isk
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Iejir_Isk » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:01 am

from what i've heard otehrs say :

salvage, war, scavenger (this is a question?), and most likely

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DarkCecilo
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by DarkCecilo » Mon Aug 05, 2013 1:34 pm

Zuul are good at swarming and have an early advantage with the amount of heavy cannons they have, their armor is kind of rubbish however.

Early game I would focus on PD weapons, one or the other, Laser or Ballistic, this will save you from missile spam early game. While allowing you to missile spam them early game.

Early Game Strategy for Zuul is pretty much the same as any other, Expand fast and quickly, For the Zuul this is especially important, because they eat away at their worlds.

Wraith Abductors are good for hitting new colonies, they also kill some population, and take slaves so they are good as assault shuttles, to a degree. The slaves are more useful though.

Rushing a Suul'ka can be a drain on your resources due to the high upkeep of the level 3-4 station. And if you rush a Suul'ka early. His weapons aren't as good as they can be, but it's up too you.

Edit - Remember, you can make new ships on turn 1 without a prototype cost. Make 1 with pure missiles, and 1 with regular weapons and mix up which you use. Or the enemy will start deploying PD.

WarpObscura
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by WarpObscura » Mon Aug 05, 2013 1:53 pm

Iejir_Isk wrote:scavenger (this is a question?)

Yes. Which is the best to use for assaulting a planet?
DarkCecilo wrote:Early game I would focus on PD weapons, one or the other, Laser or Ballistic, this will save you from missile spam early game. While allowing you to missile spam them early game.

Early Game Strategy for Zuul is pretty much the same as any other, Expand fast and quickly, For the Zuul this is especially important, because they eat away at their worlds.

Is Plasma Focusing worth rushing if the worthwhile colonies are all far away?
Last edited by WarpObscura on Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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DarkCecilo
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by DarkCecilo » Mon Aug 05, 2013 1:58 pm

WarpObscura wrote:
Iejir_Isk wrote:scavenger (this is a question?)

Yes. Which is the best to use for assaulting a planet?


If you are just assaulting it, then assault shuttles. If you are seeking slaves, Scavenger, if you are doing a hit and run, wraith abductors.

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DarkCecilo
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by DarkCecilo » Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:16 pm

DarkCecilo wrote:
WarpObscura wrote:
Iejir_Isk wrote:scavenger (this is a question?)

Yes. Which is the best to use for assaulting a planet?


If you are just assaulting it, then assault shuttles. If you are seeking slaves, Scavenger, if you are doing a hit and run, wraith abductors.


Plasma focusing I only really take if the nearby stars are to far for me to reach, usually isn't a problem for Zuul with their custom nodes.

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Karu
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Karu » Tue Aug 06, 2013 5:25 pm

Zuul the first turn:

Put your tax to 7 (you will never bother that slider again! 0 moral, 0 problem - as zuul), adjust the security slider to the notch.
Delete most of the designs.

MY Turn 1 Designs:

LR (Longrange) armor: Medium & large mounts missiles, Small mounts green beamer (Hammerhead, Armor, Fusion) - 1 endurance
SR (short range) armor: Medium & Lare Mounts: heavy driver (except the back one, thats a missile) (Hammerhead, Armor, Fusion) - 2 endurance
CnC: Missiles + Green Beamer (Hammerhead,CnC, Fusion) - 1 endurance
Supply: Missiles + Green Beamer (Standard, Supply, Fusion) - 8 endurance
Drone Carrier: Missiles + Green Beamer (Standard, Supply, Fusion) - 3 endurance
-> Drone with Plasma Cannon! (starting drones for zuul have 1 medium mount!)
Colo: Missiles + Green Beamer (Hammerhead, trans colo, Fusion) - 1 endurance (no armor !!)
Assault: Massdriver + Green Beamer (Standard, assault, Fusion) - 1 endurance
Boarding: Missiles + Green Beamer (Standard, Boarding, Fusion)- 1 endurance
Bore: Missiles + Green Beamer (Bore)- 2 endurance
Constructor: -
R+S: don't bother in the early game - you don'T have money to build it (else Standard. Boarding, Fusion
Wraith/Scavenger: i do not bother with them early game ... later if you have forward colonies, PD - then slaves are great for new colonies, old colos do not need them :/

If you have time (medium to large size map) take FTL first, then plasma focusing.
On smaler maps (like knifefight) go for PD asap (take ballistic PD if possible).

==> Fleets normaly need 2-4 suppy ships early game, thats why you need Plasma focusing very early - it results in 1-2 combat ships more.

Vital early game techs:

- FTL (if you have time - aka techtime + 20-40 rounds)
- Plasma Focusing
- PD (Ballistic befor laser)
- Combat algorthims
- AP rounds
- Enviromental Tailoring
- heavy planet missiles

Nice to have:
- Shield (deflector 50%, the other 2 are 20% chance)
- Armor (magno ceramic, reflective coating)
- advance drones (assault shuttles with PD :> )

First prototypes I usually build are when PD + Plasma focusing are done, if i can delay it after some armor or shieldtechs even better.
First new ship a coloship (PD+ PF) (the additional endurence normaly cuts the 1 supplyship, improving colonisation)

Fleetdoctrine:

Startfleets with boreships. Later the Armor-Ships get replaced by droneship (more endurance, faster scouting).
Construction fleets (CnC, 2-3 const, 1 Bore, 1-0 supply - boreship only after PF) to build station (doh!) and keep the nodelines working in empire.
Colo fleets: CnC + 4 Colos (rebase for support the colony in the system, thats why 5 is max), eventually one maxed colo for high hazards (to support, still a small one is stationed)


For the Suul'ka:

- It will be equiped with your best weapon techs.
- they cannot be retrofited (yet)
- make sure the upkeep for the station is not killing your economy
- be sure you have some biosphere - or a (enemy) planet to leech from :evil:


My 2 cents

Sincerly

WarpObscura
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by WarpObscura » Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:29 am

Why ballistic rather than laser for PD?

Penpen
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Penpen » Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:21 pm

WarpObscura wrote:Why ballistic rather than laser for PD?


Zuul have much better chances for ballistics so you'll want VRF Systems for the rate of fire boost, especially since it helps the turn 1 mass driver fits aswell without the need for refits.

Iejir_Isk
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Iejir_Isk » Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:28 pm

funnily LOA have worse chances followed by liir XD...

also, especially en mass phalanx works pretty well vs missiles + drones. with possible exclusions of heavy missiles and pretty well v torps, which are the three main sources of tracking heavy damage in the early game.

WarpObscura
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by WarpObscura » Thu Aug 08, 2013 1:35 pm

Does Radiant Drive do anything if you don't have DNs yet?

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Resok
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Resok » Thu Aug 08, 2013 3:25 pm

WarpObscura wrote:Does Radiant Drive do anything if you don't have DNs yet?


Nope, not as far as I know. However I believe Star Tear works fine without AM or DNs so it at least unlocks that path early even without AM/DNs. Node Maw requires Anti-Matter though.
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WarpObscura
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by WarpObscura » Mon Aug 12, 2013 3:06 am

Will I still get the 5 stable node paths, though? Or do I need the Radiant Bore to make those?

Gilligan
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Gilligan » Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:33 pm

I'd like to add some questions, since it seems there's actually some Hord players around these days!

-Expanding. I feel really slow at this because the Rending Bores move so slowly. Any tips to optimize this? I've thought about boring with one fleet and surveying with a 2nd fleet Hiver style, but it seems expensive and probably not any faster.

-Teching: I generally go for PD, plasma focusing, and environmental tailoring early on, then up to DNs for Armada CnC and Radiant Bores. I feel like I'm missing something from the Psi tree, but since Zuul have no use for Empathy I'm not sure what else to get. I'm also not sure when to go for Tribute Stations, getting them too early is a huge money sink. Maybe get DNs, then tribute, then go for AM?

-Trade: I've been skipping this completely, I tried it one game and was very underwhelmed. However I'm having some mid-game money problems. Anyone had different results? What about going for piracy?

Edit: one more thing, I saw on the wiki that each Suul'ka has modules, but I can't find any way in-game to refit or add modules to an evil space whale.

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Resok
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Re: Zuul advice needed

Post by Resok » Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:01 pm

Gilligan wrote:I'd like to add some questions, since it seems there's actually some Hord players around these days!


Always been Horde players around (been playing them pretty frequently since launch). :)

Gilligan wrote:-Expanding. I feel really slow at this because the Rending Bores move so slowly. Any tips to optimize this? I've thought about boring with one fleet and surveying with a 2nd fleet Hiver style, but it seems expensive and probably not any faster.


Logistics are possibly one of Zuul's biggest weaknesses and the only thing that really slows down their expansion. Their unmatched population growth, largest hazard range (excluding Loa technically), and rapid terraforming due to default overharvest IO makes them grow a colony from nothing up to max pop quite rapidly. Personally my recommending is more fleets, more naval stations, and rapid multi-prong expansion in as many directions as you can go. Early Plasma focusing and doing a new design of your bore, supply, and ER ships can be key to making the most of your endurance for those long travel times to distant systems.

My expansion plan involves a survey fleet first with the bore ship and maximized endurance in fleet to rip the node initially, a colony fleet immediate out to that new system if it has good colony options, and then a construction fleet immediately following after to build a naval station at that location right after the colony is formed so you can rebase your fleets forward as you go. With 7 tax at early game it's not hard to mount multiple sets of survey, colony, and construction fleets to advance your empire out rapidly.

Gilligan wrote:-Teching: I generally go for PD, plasma focusing, and environmental tailoring early on, then up to DNs for Armada CnC and Radiant Bores. I feel like I'm missing something from the Psi tree, but since Zuul have no use for Empathy I'm not sure what else to get. I'm also not sure when to go for Tribute Stations, getting them too early is a huge money sink. Maybe get DNs, then tribute, then go for AM?


Personally I generally grab trade early to counter the costs of the tribute stations. DNs, AM and Radiant bores are some of the pinnacle techs in my experience - though I've had good success early game simply by massing Advanced Drones mixed with boarding pods and missiles to saturate PD coverage and destroy key enemy targets. Point defense is generally a priority for any race - however Zuul PD coverage and layouts are some of the worst. One way to counter this weakness is fielding Escort BRs if you're concerned with ship losses when faced with heavy missile, torp, or drone fire.

Gilligan wrote:-Trade: I've been skipping this completely, I tried it one game and was very underwhelmed. However I'm having some mid-game money problems. Anyone had different results? What about going for piracy?


Personally I highly recommend trade as Zuul early and fast. Your high population growth will net you *significant* income and it will also help to shift your government to the right side towards Plutocracy which is another significant income increase (I think around +15% off the top of my head). I generally combine Civilian and Science stations to overcome your racial penalty of low research capabilities.

That all being said - once you get a Suul'ka or 5 you'll be able to walk through most enemy fleets early -> mid game with a bit of control and micro. The tentacle swipes can take out a DN section at *least* in one hit and can often cleave a DN in two. Once you get good at mixing crush and hold, and the manual positioning of your Suul'ka so that they get a good swipe you can wipe out whole fleets without much trouble (especially with a Suul'ka like the Kraken).
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