The BIG Eldar thread and more

Get ready for a read boyz!

***Quick Bio***

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First, I'll start off by saying that I think the art, sounds, graphics, and animations in this game is second to none. It really does make the whole 40K out in space feel authentic and amazing. The new Holo-fields are absolutely gorgeous and I love the effects on the Drukhari Shadowfields as well.

I wrote a thread a long time ago with how I think the 3 Eldar factions should be, take a gander if you want, but in general, what I see in the game resembles the fluff close enough.

I’ll start with some themes from the lore:

  • Speed - Drukhari > Corsairs > CW
  • Durability - CW > Corsairs > Drukhari
  • Boarding - Drukhari > CW > Corsairs
  • Damage - Drukhari > Corsairs > CW

Since all Eldar factions employ hit and run strategies with 90 degree prow-facing weapons, each faction had a niche: Drukhari did a lot of damage but was paper-thin in return, CW was the tankiest of the Eldar but did less damage, Corsairs was more of a balance of the two.

In this latest beta, since this is an RTS game:

  • Mostly all of the Eldar had the same speed
  • CW had the most armor but they didn’t have a 2K HP BB, but Holo-fields are much tankier than Shadowfields
  • Drukhari dominated the boarding and CW/Corsairs are not even close
  • Drukhari damage was king, followed by CW due to sustain, but Corsairs are capable of big damage, they just can’t stay in the fight long.

A little different than the lore, but at least each of the Eldar factions had a theme that was somewhat similar to the lore. Because this is a table-top to RTS translation, not everything is a perfect port, but at least themes can be reinforced. I will talk about this part a bit later, but for now I want to get to the juicy part.

If it’s my understanding, from what I see in the 3 Eldars’ playstyles right now, I would say that:

  • Corsairs are the cooldown/ordnance faction where they can rely on a big, strong BB in the form of the Voidstalker, utilize their plentiful Pulsars, and employ powerful ordnance using many Bays and Torpedoes. Because a lot of these items are limited and on a figurative timer.
  • Craftworlds are a macro-heavy faction with lower DPS compared to the other two Eldar factions, but makes up for it with 67 armor ships under Holo-fields which makes them really tanky. They definitely seem to last the longest, that’s for sure.
  • Drukhar are just really sneaky and killy. They have Shadowfields to sneak up on the opponent and once they’re there, they just have merciless damage. Luckily, Escorts are able to reveal them for as long as you keep them alive, you have a chance.

OK, now that the themes and playstyles are out of the way, I’d like to talk about each Eldar faction separately. I’ll start with Corsairs because I think they need the most work out of all the Eldar factions. For the rest of this document, I will bold and underline (and highlight) areas that I think needs adjustment, improvement, or just general change.

Corsairs

From the Corsair's perspective, one of the biggest problems that they're suffering right now is because they still have the Fragile attribute that makes them take more crit than everyone else (+100% chance to receive a crit). This is absolutely murderous on something like Eldar because they require their movement and gens to stay alive. The game size has increased and so has the engagement range. There’s more ships shooting you from 21.5km away and some of them use lances, or land lucky macro shots once your units get marked. I believe this to be an oversight that just made the transition from the first game to the second, but I really do not understand the logic for why Corsairs are the only Eldar to keep this trait while supposedly. It is a huge negative player experience and essentially punishes the player for just trying to play their faction since it’s so Hit and Run focused and require sustainability to produce damage opportunities.

If you look at the DPS capabilities of the Corsairs, they're actually quite good, between DE and CW comfortably, so not much needs to be changed there IMO. Corsairs focus a lot on hit and run; they're a cooldown faction for the most part of the Eldar trio. They excel at bringing plentiful Pulsars and have a ton of ordnance. This brings me to two key points about the Eldar that are also relevant in the upcoming discussion about Craftworld and Drukhari.

First, the Pulsar. Now, I’ve talked a lot in the past about this weapon. In the fluff, it’s simply a rapid-fire up-scaled Bright Lance that’s more akin to something like a Pulse laser. It goes pew, pew, pew, and then goes on reload, but a capital ship size. In the game, it is a forward-facing, fixed weapon that shoots out a pulsing death beam that supposedly annihilates things. It’s a burst weapon, capable of doing 90 damage over a span of 3 seconds before going on a 20 second cooldown. So, here’s my issue with this weapon: I know that I’m not going to be able to influence the design of this weapon because I tried that 3 years ago, and if they didn’t make it lore-appropriate by now either by technical limitations or some other form of magic, it’s pretty much here to stay. I will say though, that this weapon right now in its current form is very awkward to use. It’s awkward because unlike the first game, as the active player, I have no idea when the weapon system will come back online. A 20 second cooldown on a weapon that you have to manually guide into position and let rip, is troublesome to use without a visual indicator. In its current form, I would almost prefer to use the old version of the Pulsar (can’t believe I’m saying this). Right now, I have to keep a mental tally of when the weapon will be available and count in my head. I’ve adapted to it by now since both CW and Corsairs share this technology, but I still think it’s troublesome. I don’t know what the fix is here, but it could be something as simple as a cooldown timer on the weapon on the bottom toolbar.

This brings me into a follow-up statement about the Pulsar. The Pulsars DPS was roughly doubled from the first game, and in some ways, it accounts for the 2x increase to Hull but not for Shields. In its current form, it’s a very all or nothing weapon. When a Eldar ship uses the Pulsar, it is at its most vulnerable (hint hint). Because it is a 3-second 9k range weapon, it forces the Eldar player to hard commit to a fixed line directly to its target and close if he wants any chance at hitting with all of the burst. This is just the byproduct of having a fixed-fore weapon, but because of the speed at which the Eldar ship closes and the fact that you’re closing (hopefully with AHF for a ram), makes the weapon in general a higher-risk weapon to utilize. I do not feel that this weapon currently has the damage that outweighs the risk that it induces. I’m also sure, and please correct if wrong, but with the doubling of the hull from the first game to now, shields also doubled in some cases. If this is the case, then doubling the DPS of the Pulsar was not enough to justify the increase to shields. The tracking on this weapon is also quite poor in most cases as if you let the AI aim for you, you will not be able to hit most Frigates in the game.

Lastly, I’d like to mention that there are no direct upgrades or skills that promotes additional Pulsar use. I will talk about this later in the upgrade section, but if you look at Drukhari Phantom Lances, their receive a Concentrated Fire perk for taking Reload as their stance that increases the damage for their Phantom Lanes by 100%, doubling the damage. For CW and Corsairs, perhaps taking Reload on them will increase the range of their Pulsars by 4.5k? Some food for thought.

Next, I’d like to talk about Eldar Ordnance really quick. For future references, I’m using Ordnance to describe Torps, Fighters and Bombers. In the lore, Eldar had superior fighters and torpedoes: They had dodge properties essentially and they were only destroyed on a roll of a 6, which no other factions had. In short, they had Top Guns in space with their Fighters and Bombers, and their Torps were extremely advanced and capable of impossible maneuvers that when combined with Holo-fields, made them almost impossible to shoot down. In the first BFG, Eldar ordnance maintained a certain level of superiority. After all, the Eldar is expected to do more with less, so they had 30% dodge on their fighter/bombers and 50% dodge on their torps. In the current beta, I shit you not, I’m losing to Harpies and Orks. My torps are also being knocked out of the air by a BB not in Brace looking at me sideways. Something is up, and I can’t put a finger on it, but it seems like Eldar has lost its space/air/void superiority.

Both of these factors combined, combined with the Fragile trait is why I believe Corsairs are currently underperforming compared to the other 2 Eldar factions. They focus mainly on their Pulsars and Ordnance, and because of Fragile, they are put on a fast-ticking timer for when their effectiveness to actually pull off those hit and run tactics before they just cave and are incapable of continuing the fight. It doesn’t help that currently, the Voidstalker and Eldar Launch Bays feels overcosted and that the lynchpin of the Corsair faction is often overlooked for more reliable weapons like the macro. Reliability is the hallmark of any strong, competitive faction, and right now Corsairs are very far from the tree. Eldar in general are designed to be a high-risk, high-reward, high-skill cap faction, but in its current state, Corsairs are not rewarded enough for their play and the amount of effort you need make successful attacks.

Closing statement: High risk, low reward (because cooldown-reliant and Fragile).

Craftworlds

Next, I want to talk about CW Eldar.

For the most part, I feel that CW Eldar is in a good place minus the existing problems that I talked about earlier; which is Pulsars and Eldar Ordnance. However, I feel the need to call out that the biggest issue I see for them right now is that they’re too safe. They’re too safe because of the 270 degree firing arc (thanks to Runic Targeting) and the fact that they’re the tankiest Eldar. I agree with the design that they’re supposed to be tanky with full holos, but their ability to deal damage and infinitely kite away with 13.5k weapon systems makes the faction generally over-performing and a better pick over Corsairs.

Let me explain: The Eldar playstyle by design forces the player to make difficult choices. You’re traditionally forced to make the decision to stay alive or deal damage, and you make that decision to several different ships at once in any given moment of the game. This is because the Eldar have all prow weapons with a 90 degree firing arc, or have to play with hard commit weapons such as fixed Pulsars and Torpedoes. The only thing that is multi-directional for the Eldar are its “superior” Fighters and Bombers. When it comes to the Craftworlds, the fact that they have an upgrade that provides 13.5k range to 270 degree firing arcs makes the faction overly effective because you start to blur the lines of high-risk and high-reward to a point where you can almost always reap rewards. You no longer trade safety with damage potential so you’re always able to kite while maintaining damage pressure on the enemy. This playstyle also limits fleet construction because ‘why not more macros’ and further reduces the usefulness or incentive to take Pulsars. Macros can do more work, it’s more safe to use, and you never have to dive on the enemy which is when Eldar ships are at its highest risk. If you don’t believe me, try Kin-crewed with Reload on a Tyranid player where you’re constantly dining on death’s table. It should be stressful to play against the Great Devourer, but that stress is greatly diminished with safer play with 270 degree guns. I believe that this is a problem with not only the CW faction, but also with Corsairs so I see this as a overarching problem with the current playstyle of both Eldar factions. You merely notice as much with CW because it is the more competitive pick due to the state that Corsairs are in. My suggestion is to reduce the firing arc to 180 degrees instead of 270 because it will at least force the Eldar player to travel horizontally and thus reducing the kiting impact of gameplay noticeably.

Closing statement: Low risk, high reward (because of reliable kiting with 270 degree fire).

Drukhari

Lastly, I want to talk about the Drukhari. In short, the Drukhari Battleships are undercosted: They have the highest DPS per point of any ship in the game by far, and it only compounds and gets more powerful with upgrades, stances or variant of BB. For example, if you factor in Reload, Kin-crewed, and take an Obsidian Rose BB, you’re looking at upwards of 100+ DPS if you are able to stack enough Kin-crewed. There’s a measurement that I usually employ when determining the effectiveness of a ship and that’s through a system called Effectiveness Value, or roughly how much bang do you get for the buck. For perspective, the average of the DEV (Damage Effectiveness Value) with respect to total DPS including lances for the entire Imperial Navy BB line is ~19. That means you pay 19 points per DPS essentially. For the 298 point Falling Moon BB that you can take 4 of in a 1200 game, you have 42 DPS in your macros ALONE before Reload, Kin-crewed, or anything else; which makes your total DEV a 6.8. Lower means that you pay roughly 3x as less than IN for the damage, which makes sense in a lot of ways because you’re also much more fragile. However, there is no doubt that this is still value-city coupons because once you factor in Reload, Kin-crewed, or throw in Phantom Lances into the equation (+100% damage under reload), you’re looking at by far, the best DPS ship for the points in the game. This effect is greatly amplified by the fact you can simply sit there in most cases and burn down enemy ship without remorse, sometimes without a thought or fear of retaliation because you have movement-stopping torps, Statis and Black Holes (Dark Matter Cannon). In short, Drukhari BBs are undercosted, and that while the damage is very much Dark Kin in nature, there’s just too much value in the damage that they’re doing currently. I would propose and argue for a points increase of these ships because it is only really prevalent on these large, 2000 HP 50 armor beasts. For the Cruisers, while damage value is also great, they at least die in reasonable times vs. competent players using Scan effectively. The 1200 HP when revealed really doesn’t do the Drukhari any favors. I think because the Battleships are so domineering (because less ships = easier to control), it limits fleet composition in competitive builds and severely decreases variety.

Before I move onto Skills and Upgrades, I’d like to talk briefly about Shadowfields. I’m not really sold on the design of these because I think they are very all or nothing in a lot of ways, both in design and in-practice. The shorter explanation to this is that they either make the ship Stealth if moving at max speed, or gives them nothing at all, so they’re paper airplanes. Against lists that runs Frigates and have access to Scan, Shadowfields are only really great on approach. Against lists that runs without Frigates, it’s like shooting a fish in a barrel because you can disengage and approach at will, completely driving the tempo of the game. For the unfortunate factions that do not have cheap Scans because of the cost of Frigates (cough, other Eldar, cough), Stealth is often a huge decider in games because it makes even 13.5k kiting methods virtually useless.

Let’s back up for a minute here and talk about the fluff, lore and design aspects of Shadowfields from the table-top, both in general 40K and in BFG. Since we’re in BFG land, I’ll be first to say that the original DE design for Shadows was uncreative at best. It was a literal copy and paste of Eldar holo-fields and very boring to say the least. In 40K, Shadowfields was a 2++ Invulnerable save that once failed (you rolled a 1), it stopped working for the rest of the game. It’s supposed to represent this immensely powerful forcefield that can stop the heaviest armament regardless of source until it wears out eventually; essentially putting the DE player to test their luck and hopefully not roll 1s. Fast-forward to the current game, Shadowfields are more like another Drukhari technology called Night Shields, which before 8th Ed., made it so that opponents weapon ranges were shorter vs. Dark Eldar because they were clouded in an inky darkness. I understand how copy and pasting the Eldar holo-fields will just feel bland and I agree with that. Stealth was given over as a mechanic to make Dark Eldar more unique and I think that’s great flavouring, but again, polarizing because it’s very much a all or nothing approach. To the active Drukhari player, it’s either you have Stealth, or you get nothing, and for the defending player, it’s either you have Frigates, or you die.

I can’t put a finger on this yet but I generally dislike the idea that since you have no shields anyway, you might want to just stick around and shoot (not saying you should). Just prow in and engage at 9K or something because by the time you’re revealed, you don't have to play like Drukhari in the fluff. This seems strange because in the lore, the Drukhari are not a standing navy, and avoid confrontation that they cannot win. It is this all or nothing feature that seemingly makes Drukhari Cruisers and Light Cruisers less appealing (looking past BBs), because without active Stealth, 1200 HP and 50 Armor have almost no staying power. Perhaps you can give them lesser Holo-field properties (imagine half the effectiveness of current Holo-fields), keep the Stealth mechanic, but lower the health of BBs to compensate for the fact they have 2000 HP? It would be more lore-appropriate while keeping the current design, and would give Drukhari Cruisers a little more leg to stand on.

Closing Statement: Low risk in some cases, high risk in others (as a result of Shadowfields), generally high reward because of underpriced BBs

We’re almost done, I promise. I just want to briefly talk about the Skill/Upgrade options that players have right now and how I would rate them. In general, any perks that are very specific and conditional are just not widely used. In contrast, any perk that gives a unique distinction to playstyle, or uniformly benefits the entire fleet in a non-conditional way, is a solid choice. The ones that only benefit one ship like the flagship, are somewhere in the middle. Keep in mind that I understand that some of these are fluff and casual choices and not every upgrade must be useful, but I want to point out the ones that promote different styles of play (good) and ones that will never be picked (bad). There’s tons of suggestions I can give, but I’ll hold off on that until Tindalos wants some suggestions.

I’ll start with the ones that some of the factions share in common:

Shared:

  • Holo-field/Shadowfield Overload - Provides extra protection on the flagship. Situational but can be very strong in some cases so I view this as a worthwhile upgrade.
  • Augur/Wraithbone Probe - Scouting is always good. Not as strong due to Eldar’s reliance on active scouting using faster ships and fighters, but acceptable.
  • Disruption Bomb - General purpose bomb that punishes bad play. I don’t have a problem with it per se other than it’s sort of a boring, non-Eldar weapon with a distinct lack of flavor.
  • Statis Bomb - Same thing can be said here. More worthwhile for the Eldar who needs room to breathe sometimes, usually my #1 pick because it combos well with Maelstrom. More on this later.
  • Wraithbone Reinforcements - I do not feel that this is very worthwhile because it’s frontal only and for CW, it’s only a minor benefit. For Corsairs, this is certainly much stronger, but I would like to see the armor bumped up to a 2+ save (83) to make it more enticing. The reason why I say this is because it requires Eldar ships to be in 9K proximity and sometimes those occurrences are rare, especially if you’re swarming or get displaced by the enemy fleet.
  • Micro Warp Jump - MWJ for short, I don’t see the value on this on Eldar as much as I see it on something like the Retribution because they lack HET and general speed. It’s still solid and useful to have, it’s just that it’s more edge-case for Eldar ships because of their inherent speed and movement capabilities.
  • Polarized FIeld - Never used. This is strictly situational and dependent on the whims of the Chaos Gods when rolling on map generation, and obstacles can be generally avoided with ease due to superior Eldar turn.
  • Void Predator - Again, never used. This is situational and dependent on a certain strategy that generally no one employs. Holo-field effects are strong enough and circling around in a gas cloud when there’s objectives to take is almost never an idea scenario.
  • Kin-crewed Batteries - This is good because it promotes higher-risk play for greater damage rewards. It changes both the playstyle of the player, possible fleet composition, and gives greater incentives at the risk of shorter engagement ranges and increased multi-tasking. It also forces hard player decisions such as changing stances to Brace or Reload mid-match because you will lose this benefit, but will gain flexibility. Trade-offs should occur in perk design and I see this as an example of great design. Some numbers can be tweaked with this combined with Reload, but that’s another story.
  • Accelerated Batteries - Another worthwhile upgrade because it puts emphasis on the Flagship. This stands out immediately to me because it provides certain flagships with a different way of play. For example, this greatly benefits the Voidstalker and takes advantage of its already impressive 13.5k range weapons, but it also allows ships like the Obsidian Rose or Phoenix to start the party from further away, reducing the risk factor on your flagship.
  • Spirit Crystal Lens - I don’t dislike it, but I think it can be so much more. I would rather see this upgrade provide some incentive for Pulsars for line ships to promote a certain playstyle. For example, if this made Pulsars deal 50% more damage to Shields, it will incentivize the player to possibly look into Pulsar-heavy fleets and expand his creative fleet-building capabilities. What about range? If players took this but gave them a 4.5K range increase on Pulsars, that would make them more worthwhile as well. Let’s see what BFG, 2010 Comp has to say about something similarly named:

“Enhanced Crystal Focusing. Rare ultra-pure crystals and a delicate realignment of the firing mechanisms raise the power transfer ratio of the ship‟s weapons, significantly increasing their range. Add +15cm range to the ship‟s weapon batteries and lance-type weapons.”

Well, we already have something like this that applies to the flag, but a range increase for line ships might be another conversation. The only thing I caution against is giving something like this and Accelerated Batteries on the Voidstalker. If we see Pulsar improvements, I don’t think anyone would enjoy 21.5k Pulsars. Keep in mind that I’m not supporting increasing range of Macros, we already have something that does that.

  • Spirit Stone Targeting Node - This is another upgrade I like because it locks you into a certain stance to get the benefit, and changes your style of play. However, like I said earlier, I believe the current iteration of extending range AND allowing 270 degree fire is a bit much. However, my point still stands that I think this is excellent design and changes the dynamics, fleet comp and playstyle of the entire fleet, and essentially adds another active decision the player has to make in battle (to stay in Stance or not).
  • Blessing of Vaul - I like this upgrade. It allows for a certain mentality in battle that if you want to TEAR THEM APART, you can, but at the risk of getting rammed, boarded or torp’d. It further encapsulates the high-risk, high-reward nature of the faction, and I like that. It’s too risky for me in most situations, but the damage this can apply is very appealing. Great to use when you’re swarming and coming from all different vectors.

Unique:

  • Venom Shards Bomb - Situational and unsure how venom/Splinter shards enter through 100 feet of Adamantium, but OK. The range on this is what is least appealing as 1.5K range is absolutely tiny. I would love to see this created to match the Disruption Bomb at least to make it more appealing.
  • Dark Matter Cannon - This is one of the go-to Drukhari combos for a one-two Statis Bomb/DMC combo. This slows and does damage, essentially trapping the ships in the Statis bubble. This allows allows ships trapped towards the edge of the Statis to get torpedoed into the ground, so I think this combination is a bit too strong. I would seek to remove the movement hampering capabilities on this first otherwise..
  • Maelstrom - It just becomes a carbon copy of this, which I don’t find very appealing. This is a great displacement weapon, and I like the design of it, I just don’t enjoy all 3 Eldar factions having something similar. Maelstrom is like a giant Psychic Storm cast by Farseers so I can understand its place in CW, but for Corsairs it should be something different. Again, just minor complaints.
  • Wych Cults - This is fine for the most part, but Drukhari boarding is already so strong that I find this to be unappealing.
  • Splinter Torpedoes - I like this upgrade a lot. It gives Torps something unique on top of their damage and makes Drukhari standout in that respect. The design is great.
  • Ramming Blade - Not a fan of ramming with Eldar ships so I always skip over this one.
  • Torture Chambers - Morale for the Drukhari is generally not an issue because you should be killing things and staying ahead. If you’re not, that’s the fault of the player and you have active countermeasures like Inspiring Speech to keep your ships in the fight. Morale is generally not considered a super high-priority in a battle and if things go south, you’ve probably already lost anyway so morale doesn’t matter. It’s also very conditional, which further limits its use and application.
  • Dire Avenger Node - I would like this more if CW weren’t terrible in boarding actions (both boarding and Lightning Strike). The chance to inflict Crit chances on boarding gets increased to 30%, but in general I feel like this needs to have a much greater impact for it to take a upgrade slot.
  • Shrine of Asuryan - CW Eldar certainly do not require more morale benefits so I don’t see a point to this upgrade at all. Again, morale only matters when you’re almost dead, and by that time the game might as well be over (especially for CW). The only time that morale might matter is when you’re being nuked by something like Psychic Scream (btw, this is insane), but you can counter-play that with positioning and Inspiring Speech.
  • Ship of the Dead - Extremely conditional and situation because it forces you to also use Rally. If this was a hard Troop benefit like +5 troops or something, it might be more worthwhile, but in its current state, it will never be chosen over some of the other options.
  • Vibro Torpedoes - Another great design choice for the Corsairs and can be very powerful in the right circumstances.
    Environmental Energy Drain - Situational and RNG dependent on map generation, so again, will probably never take.
    To summarize and provide a minor disclaimer: I feel that Eldar is pretty close to where they need to be. I don’t think they need a lot of changes, especially in the realm of design, but I do think they will need some numbers worked.

The disclaimer that I want to throw out is that changes to the Eldar factions have to be very small. Because the faction is highly skill-dependent, they are often at the extremes when it comes to in-game battle performance. A great player can sing with Eldar if they have good enough control, but a mediocre player will not be able to take them to their full potential. While the same could be said about every faction, I don’t think anyone will argue that it takes a certain type of player to use the Eldar factions effectively because their minimal skill level is just much higher. Mistakes cost the Eldar player a lot, and the window at which they can allow those mistakes are much smaller. This is OK everyone, please don’t be offended. This is both lore and gameplay appropriate and design wise, makes perfect sense. It was like this in BFG TT, like this in Epic, like this in 40K, like this in virtually every game where Eldar is present, including modern interpretations that is the Dawn of War series, and the first iteration of this game. The TLDR there is: Please take extra care in the balance for the Eldar factions!

So, with that said, let’s talk about some proposals. What am I suggesting after talking about the factions for so long? Well, not much actually. The way that I will present this is with a concern, followed by a suggestion(s), followed by my reasoning. I will start with the key concerns that have already been highlighted in this document. Keep in mind that for suggestions, I’m not asking or even insisting that all of it should be taken.

Key Concerns:

  • Concern: Fragile Attribute greatly decreases Corsair reliability

  • Suggestion: Remove the Fragile Attribute from Corsair ships

  • Reasoning: The Corsairs are a hit and run faction that is greatly hampered by the inclusion of this trait. Threat range and engagement ranges have been increased and so has the number of ships capable of inflicting Crits in a 1200 point game. At 50 armor across the board and standard Eldar hull values, Corsairs are ‘fragile’ enough.

  • Concern: Pulsars are under-performing and awkward to use

  • Suggestion(s):

  • Increase Pulsar damage slightly; from 30 to 35.

  • Display a Pulsar cooldown timer on the bottom UI to better help players visualize the cooldown

  • Reasoning: Pulsars are awkward to use and as a fixed-fore weapon, requires the player to commit to use them which greatly increases the Eldar player’s risk factor. Currently, it does not feel that the risk/reward factor is justified and that damage needs to be increased. This is evident in the fact that while Health was effectively doubled and armor reworked, Shields have also seen doubling while Pulsar DPS doubled according to just Hull. I am seeking an increase in damage for the Pulsar itself because a Reload decrease will only force Eldar players to commit more to “Pulsar runs” that unneedly increases their risk factor.

  • Concern: Eldar Ordnance are under-performing

  • Suggestion: Increase or give Dodge properties to Eldar Fighters, Bombers or Ordnance

  • Reasoning: This is not only lore appropriate but was also present in the first BFG game. I don’t know what happened between the two games but somehow, in my experience and playtime, I not believe the properties are present or are working as intended. Eldar fighters are often seen losing to Harpies or Ork fighters, and their Torpedoes are not as reliable.

  • Concern: 270 degree firing arcs are over-performing

  • Suggestion: Change 270 firing arcs to 180 degrees

  • Reasoning: 270 degree firing arcs leads to particular high-reward, low-risk behaviors from Eldar admirals as they can continuously kite without committing to any attack pattern.

  • Concern: Drukkhari Battleships are over-performing

  • Suggestion: Increase the point cost of some Drukhari battleships; mainly Obsidian Rose and Falling Moon

  • Reasoning: The reason why this is some is because Iron Thorn is currently over-costed due to similar DPS output as a Falling Moon but cost over a hundred more for 1 Launch Bay. However, Falling Moon at 298 currently allows 4 Drukhari BBs to be taken, and Obsidian Rose DPS is greatly over-performing. I believe increasing the Falling Moon’s cost into the 300 range outside of being able to realistically take 4 in a game, while increasing Obsidian Rose’s cost to mid-300s would better justify the value from these ships. Likewise, and for consistency, I would imagine that both the Iron Thorn and Dying Sun (assuming it gains its assault modules back) to be somewhere in the middle of the two proposed values.

Additional Concerns:

  • Concern: Shadowfields in current form.

  • Suggestion(s):

  • Shadowfields provide a 10% Macro accuracy reduction, 20% lance at max speed (minor holo-fields effect), and Stealth upon full charge

  • Reduce Drukhari BBs HP from 2000 to 1800

  • Reasoning: This would increase the survivability and viability to Drukhari CA/CL/FFs by giving them more survivability, but will require Drukhari BBs to fall in HP to compensate. However, the Shadowfields charge faster and makes the Drukhari more unique compared to the CW or Corsairs. This is much closer to the lore of Shadowfields and GW's initial design for Drukhari while maintaining cohesion with the current Tindalos design.

  • Concern: Corsair Torpedoes only have 4 instead of 8

  • Suggestion: Corsair Torpedo count increased from 4 to 8

  • Reasoning: Drukhari and CW both have 8 Torpedoes in their layout so I think this might have been an oversight from the first game. In BFG:A1, the Corsairs had 4 torps, but now with BFG:A2, all the other Eldar got 8 torps while Corsairs remain at 4.

Honestly, there’s not much here. The Shadowfields one might be the most design-centric one and the largest change, but it’s also one we can all live without. I strongly believe that with some of these changes, the 3 Eldar factions can be unique in flavour while being competitive in the hands of a skilled player. There are some points adjustments that I would advocate as well, but I'm interested in seeing these changes implemented first before looking at prices (I'm looking at you Voidstalker!).

Thanks for reading!

last edited by LKHERO

@lkhero said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

de because it puts emphasis on the Flagship. This stands out immediately to me because it provides certain flagships with a different way of play. For example, this greatly benefits the Voidstalker and takes advantage of its already impressive 13.5k range weapons, but it also allows ships like the Obsidian Rose or Phoenix to start the party from further away, r

Generally a solid overview.

Do Necrons get Scan? I ask because Tyranids do not on their escorts, making them have no real response to DE that I have discerned. Perhaps assault boats can continue to chase even in stealth, but if thats their one solution then they are just even more dependant on the boats.

If I were to make a recommendation for the shadow-field, I might just have it act as a very weak and fast regenning shield as well. 100% being a 25 health shield, for example, to take just a bit of the edge off on a fight and allow the stealth to be stripped off with attacks (until there is none, then it would wait till it hits full and vanish from the fresh shield). The fast regen of the shield while moving might make this answer interesting.

Sadly, I was unable to unlock everything, so I cannot actually comment on a real fraction of your feedback. Every main point though, I agree with.

@lkhero said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

From the Corsair's perspective, one of the biggest problems that they're suffering right now is because they still have the Fragile attribute that makes them take more crit than everyone else (+100% chance to receive a crit). This is absolutely murderous on something like Eldar because they require their movement and gens to stay alive.

it seems critical damage appears 10 times more often than the previous game, even for other factions

Next, I’d like to talk about Eldar Ordnance really quick. For future references, I’m using Ordnance to describe Torps, Fighters and Bombers. In the lore, Eldar had superior fighters and torpedoes: They had dodge properties essentially and they were only destroyed on a roll of a 6, which no other factions had. In short, they had Top Guns in space with their Fighters and Bombers, and their Torps were extremely advanced and capable of impossible maneuvers that when combined with Holo-fields, made them almost impossible to shoot down. In the first BFG, Eldar ordnance maintained a certain level of superiority. After all, the Eldar is expected to do more with less, so they had 30% dodge on their fighter/bombers and 50% dodge on their torps. In the current beta, I shit you not, I’m losing to Harpies and Orks. My torps are also being knocked out of the air by a BB not in Brace looking at me sideways. Something is up, and I can’t put a finger on it, but it seems like Eldar has lost its space/air/void superiority.

i seriously think ships have 4 times too many turrets

Let’s back up for a minute here and talk about the fluff, lore and design aspects of Shadowfields from the table-top, both in general 40K and in BFG. Since we’re in BFG land, I’ll be first to say that the original DE design for Shadows was uncreative at best. It was a literal copy and paste of Eldar holo-fields and very boring to say the least. In 40K, Shadowfields was a 2++ Invulnerable save that once failed (you rolled a 1), it stopped working for the rest of the game. It’s supposed to represent this immensely powerful forcefield that can stop the heaviest armament regardless of source until it wears out eventually; essentially putting the DE player to test their luck and hopefully not roll 1s. Fast-forward to the current game, Shadowfields are more like another Drukhari technology called Night Shields, which before 8th Ed., made it so that opponents weapon ranges were shorter vs. Dark Eldar because they were clouded in an inky darkness. I understand how copy and pasting the Eldar holo-fields will just feel bland and I agree with that. Stealth was given over as a mechanic to make Dark Eldar more unique and I think that’s great flavouring, but again, polarizing because it’s very much a all or nothing approach. To the active Drukhari player, it’s either you have Stealth, or you get nothing, and for the defending player, it’s either you have Frigates, or you die.

what if, like table top, the stealth only applies to the beginning of a match and then can't be regained?

@lkhero I agree with some of your suggestions, but not all of them.

I agree fragile trait needs to be removed or reduced from Corsairs. Corsairs actually get critted more then they did in battlefleet 1, because now they don't have 25% negation to block crit rolls like they did in 1. Corsairs are already very fragile, and there just isn't need for them to be further punished.

I agree that Eldar pulsars are underperforming and awkward to use, but we must be VERY careful with these weapons. While i'm all for more feedback with them such as a timer, Increasing their damage indirectly nerfs factions such as Necrons, which are already abysmal to play. They'd also be far stronger against low-shield factions then they would standard shield factions. Tau, Orks, Spacemarines would have a much harder time because of this.

I don't think that more dodge to Eldar ordnance is needed. They're already better then their faction equivalents. Put 4 Eldar craft vs 4 Imperial ones, and the Eldar will most likely win (Or at least they should according to the files). The issue is, the 100% accuracy bonus on defense turrets makes it extremely hard to land ordnance or deal any significant turret damage against a good player. This makes bombers quite useless. In regards to the Eldar vs Tyranid situation you proposed, i don't really think that's an issue. While Eldar craft are better then Tyranid, it should matter when it's a 4v7 Scenario for example. Other factions often sacrifice alot for more hangar bays, we can't just go and make them useless by having Eldar craft shit on them with inferior numbers.

I fully agree on the topic of 270 arcs. It lets CW murder people with no effort. It's the same issue during the previous beta, but instead of DE with 270 arcs it's CW. 180 Would at least prevent them firing running away. This should definitely be tried last beta, and if it still turns out to be too much it needs to be removed all-together.

Again, fully agree on the topic of DE battleships. They're just too cheap for what you get. A price increase would be a simple and effective way to nerf them.

I don't agree with your Shadowfield changes. It just seems like an unnecessary change. Nerfing the price of Deldar BB would encourage the use of smaller vessels anyway, and there isn't really need to change a mechanic that works fine as it is.

I agree on Corsair torpedoes. If they can their ships to have 8 torpedo launchers, they should 100% do it. Then they'd at least have the opportunity to trade with the enemy at shorter ranges.

last edited by Solaire

I agree about the pulsar with you, I don’t understand why they didn’t make them right, and on the Stalker in the desktop they are generally like a turret with an arch shooting forward and sideways. And if in the first one I understood they were alpha strike weapons, then they didn’t work at all, I had a lot of blows going nowhere at the time of the turn. And if in the first game they didn’t have another profile for him, then we have shadow spears that work as pulsars should work, with an arch of fire of 90 degrees like the other front spears in the game. Oh, and all of a sudden we have spears with the arch of fire of 90 degrees on CW escorts, although the effects of Imperial spears are still used for them and there is no animation of the gun movement

I would also redid the holo-fields, a little, they don’t turn them off when they don’t move, , for example, so that from 50-90 percent of the charge they work the same way as now, and if the percentage is less then the fall rate could be reduced, but for balance it’s the same reduce the positive properties that they give. It would not change anything for a good player, but it wouldn’t punish the new. Or even when you do not move the charge remains at 20 percent, but as I say, the buff also needs to be cut for balance

kindof disagree with removing fragile completely
the two other eldar are using warships
corsairs are closer to heavily armed luxury cruisers

i can see the point in having fragile not be crit based
but they need something fluff wise to show that these are not warships unlike all other ships in the game

dont know what would fit, but some kind of fragility should be a part of their ships

I just wanted to say that this is a very nice thread, may Isha bless you.

The only issue that I have is a more general one that applies to all factions. Once your ships are spotted, they are toast. Well, not really, but any long range armada will keep pounding on your cruisers and battleships because unlike in first BFG we can't use silent running on bigger ships. It's more of a general issue that I would like to see somehow resolved perhaps by forcing the game to always spawn at least one asteroid field (for demiurge ships that have to rely on RNG to get a chance at charging that laser) and one gas field (for everyone to use as a place for losing ID on ships and making gas-cloud reliant upgrades always somewhat useful)

Tyranids have the strongest fighter force in the game and (at least I know)orks are the second.
Kinda surprising because I thought it would be Tau(They were on BFG1 due to their numbers and fighter shield upgrade) or Eldar
[or Necrons perhaps. provided they have fighters. I heared they didn't even had fighters on TT.]

Turns out dogfight is purely number based in game. six squadrons of tau fighter lose to seven squadrons of harpy by a large margin. And Necron(the most technologically advanced) fighters are totally joke.

I thought this is lore breaking, but on second thought, this was very normal in terms of a game balancing.
Those Ork and Tyranid carriers have poor guns while Eldars have excellent guns on all ships.
If Eldar wants fighter superiority, they should have a ship class of having large launch bay capacity with poor firepower. If not, the ship will cost exorbitant price(🤔 ...Voidstalker?)

last edited by SeekerDolls

On the point of Corsair ships being 'Fragile', there is nothing in Eldar lore that suggests that they're fragile, especially in comparison to the Dark Eldar vessels. I strongly believe it should be removed because it is just a terrible playing experience for the Corsairs.

I wish they fixed 2v2 game mod. It feels like 75% of games crash one or another in 2v2.

@endor said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

I wish they fixed 2v2 game mod. It feels like 75% of games crash one or another in 2v2.

What does this happen to do with this thread or Eldar? 😞

@lkhero Sorry for offtop. I made my tread about it, but it seems it didnt drew enough attention, so I found more popular tread for it. I also play all 3 Eldar factions 🙂 BTW dont you think, that Phoenix Ship is overpriced?

@lkhero said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

On the point of Corsair ships being 'Fragile', there is nothing in Eldar lore that suggests that they're fragile, especially in comparison to the Dark Eldar vessels. I strongly believe it should be removed because it is just a terrible playing experience for the Corsairs.

does the bfg rulebook page 129 count where it states eldar ships receive critical damage on a 4+ rather than a 6+ ?

I don't think the table top is necessarily the best way to balance Eldar. They were notoriously imbalanced in that they were pretty much immune to lances and close range fleets but melted to weapons batteries.

A Gothic cruiser would never even get in range to shoot an Eldar ship, and if it did, would probably deal no damage. A Carnage would tear one apart from 60cm away. It was very binary balancing.

I'm not sure I really like how holofields work, as it feels forced, but I am not sure I have a better idea.

@endor said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

@lkhero Sorry for offtop. I made my tread about it, but it seems it didnt drew enough attention, so I found more popular tread for it. I also play all 3 Eldar factions 🙂 BTW dont you think, that Phoenix Ship is overpriced?

Please dont in the future because it's quite bad taste. As for the Phoenix, I'm not sure quite yet because it depends on whether or not Pulsars or Eldar fighter and bombers can be made better. If they were made better, then I think it might be worth it, but I could see it come down a little. I don't think it needs too much cost adjustment right now.

@shadowsfm said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

@lkhero said in The BIG Eldar thread and more:

On the point of Corsair ships being 'Fragile', there is nothing in Eldar lore that suggests that they're fragile, especially in comparison to the Dark Eldar vessels. I strongly believe it should be removed because it is just a terrible playing experience for the Corsairs.

does the bfg rulebook page 129 count where it states eldar ships receive critical damage on a 4+ rather than a 6+ ?

I guess? That rule also exists on CW Eldar. The rulebook also states that Lances miss when shooting at holos, macros only shift one column, Shadowfields worked like holos, and Pulsars were not fixed fore death beams but here we are..

last edited by LKHERO

Jan Beta Build 8283 feedback:

I can't go into much detail as my first post, mainly because I think the majority of the issues I pointed out with Eldar is still there and relevant. I'm not going to use any exact format to present my thoughts on this patch, but overall we took a big step back in a lot of ways.

For one, the following doesn't work:

  • Reload for macros currently, do not work in Reload stance
  • 270 arcs are still here, but the upgrade Spirit Stone Targeting Node doesn't work either

This means two of the primary playstyles for Corsairs/CW are not functional and balance feedback currently around this is rather meaningless. With the new armor changes, or should I say the now functional armor (especially noticeable on 83 armor ships), and the change of Pulsars to be more accurate at the expense of min armor now being 50, things are a bit dicey. So, the Pulsar change is two-fold: I'm happy that Pulsars now track a little better and they behave more like actual weapons, but the long cooldown without a visible timer is still pretty frustrating. I have played enough games now that I've basically committed this timer to memory, but for newer players, I can see this be a negative player experience. With the heavier emphasis on armor, lances are more valuable now, but you can't take too many of them or else you risk being hard countered in mirror matches.

Despite not being able to fire from 13.5k range or increasing my DPS with Reload, I will say that 270-degree macro fire is still too generous while playing CW. However, I think if Corsairs had it, it might offer an interesting playstyle difference. The suggestion that I propose is that CW replaces RTN entirely with Lock-On and lose the Spirit Stone Targeting Node upgrade. However, Corsairs should keep both so they can use their 270-degree fire and play completely different than the other two Eldar.

I'll say this again: The Eldar way of warfare is to do big damage or do none. Eldar must trade survivability for damage potential or else the risk and reward factor will be too skewed (generous, or completely crap like Corsairs). If you take big risks in going prow-in for a fixed Pulsar or 90-degree macro or Torp run, you should be rewarded with damage. However, you do this at the risk of sailing straight into boarding range, ramming range, enemy torp range, faster assault boat range, Tyranid maws, Ork traktor beams, the list goes on and on. The closer you are to the enemy, the more you risk take on as Eldar, but the higher the pay off if you succeed aka Torp runs for example. Right now, a Torp run with a CW Starfall is 8 torps at 4 HP a piece with 50% dodge and 90 damage per. That is an insane amount of damage, but you're essentially risking a cruiser every time for a piece of that ass.

The game right now, as in this newest beta, is not really playable because I can't tell you if Reload + Kin-Crewed is too strong, or if RTN + SSTN is too good, because they simply don't work. What I can tell you is that with CW, the surest way to do damage is with Torps, and also because the global price increases make Eldar one of the worst CV (Carrier) factions in the game. The amount of bays you crap out is dramatically smaller than everyone else who can really field them in mass, and in this game, the number of fighters you have wins the engagement e.g. 3 IN fighters beat 2 Eldar ones. Boarding is also a really one-sided mechanic with little to no counterplay whatsoever. An assault will always give you something, whether or not its crits, troop damage, getting hulked, or something else, but pressing "B" should not give you instant benefits with nothing the opponent can do to react or do something against it. It's also purely in the favor of the aggressor and the person who boards, and has nothing to do with how good the defenders on the ship is. Thematically, it doesn't even make sense: It's almost like your "good" quality troops forget how to fight when the enemy suddenly comes on board. In short, there's no roll or calculation that is considered on the defensive, so you just take EZ-mode damage and it feels bad. Players should NOT be instantly rewarded for pressing a hotkey without the opponent's ability to respond. At least when you press "T" for torps, you are putting yourself at risk in your opponent's threat range, and he can still respond with fighter CAP, HET, AHF, angling, or body blocking, or something else reactionary.

With that said, I'll list some suggestions, starting with Eldar. Bugs aside (like fixing Reload and SSTN), here's what I would suggest for Tindalos:

  • Consider removing RTN and SSTN from CW Eldar and giving them Lock-On instead
  • Keep RTN and SSTN on Corsairs to diversify the 3 Eldars and promoting the Corsair's Hit and Run motiff
  • Consider reducing the Eldar Torpedoes to 3 HP from 4 so that they can maintain their high damage, but can still be countered by standard countermeasures (Braced turrets, fighter CAP)
  • You now what, I'll say it: Please fix Reload and SSTN.. I literally cannot provide additional balance feedback without the main damage tools of the race being used e.g. Kin-crewed + Reload and RTN + SSTN.
  • Please, for the love of God and all that is holy, remove the Fragile attribute from Corsairs. It is such a negative player experience putting a ship down on the table just for it to lose engines in the first 5s of battle. 50 armor is 'fragile' enough.

Thank the maker Drukhari BBs are now more expensive, but I'm not happy with prices overall. I think they need a lot of work and for whatever reason, if we keep creeping upwards in price, we might as well just go back to 600 in BFGA1 because we're at about the same game size.

Onto the game itself:

  • Carriers are over-performing for factions that can take them in mass: I've already given feedback for this in another thread, but consider reducing Interceptor dodge from .7 to .6 for all races, or even .5 in some cases. For example, right now Eldar fighters are .8 (which means they have better dodge), but I think they over-perform against ship turrets. It's too turret damage and the swarming is a little too good currently.
  • Boarding, ugh.. we're so close to launch and I don't think anything I say now will have an effect, but boarding right now is too powerful. There is no downside, no counterplay, and instant rewards for the player who presses the hotkey within range. The range is large and forgiving and the results speak for themselves: The damage "effects" compound, in the sense, that not only are you down crew and closer to hulking, but also down in performance by dropping troop tiers, crits are happening as well, and subject to extra effects like Surgical Strike. Perhaps consider different boarding ranges for different factions, a slight cool-up before boarders launch, or less punishing effects from boarding. Hell, I would suggest a combination of all of these. Since there's no defender's boarding roll, the assaulting player can't just reap rewards without counterplay.. that's silly.

If you look at just these two things, it's one of the reasons why Tyranids are currently eating their way through Ranked. That's because Nids are generally overpriced and underperforming for all their vessels (they don't function as a true swarm), but some of their most cost-effective ships emphasize both CV play and boarding at the same time. I saw the post that Romain wrote this morning about making upping their cost.. please NO - I advise against it! The problem lies specifically with the CVs and boarding mechanics of the current game and does not apply universally to all of Nids' ships.

TLDR: Infinity Circuit Smashed - Nothing seems to be working as intended.

last edited by LKHERO

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Also, because I'm not a monster, I have some feedback for Ranked and other modes.

Now, I don't know about you folks, but I don't have time to sit down and just mindlessly grind games. I have 3 hours a day, maybe if I'm lucky and I don't get wife aggro. I want to sit down and play my game vs. equally-skilled and challenging players. Now, I've fought multiple people in the top5 with other factions, but I've also fought against people that are brand new and starting out with their Lv.2 SM or something. I'm not sure what's going on, but I know for sure that 1v1 and 2v2 are combined, there does not seem to be an ELO distinction or at least MM that can reliably find equal-skilled players within a certain region, but something seems off. The person who can spam the most games will always be on top of the leaderboard, regardless if they're playing 2v2s and farming newbs, or just spamming games non-stop.

TLDR: The leaderboard is pretty worthless. I have legitimately dropped 1 game in something like 40, swimming through Tyranid CV filth, but I know that I will never catch up to the game-spammer and I'm STILL NOT LEVEL 10. I've given up on Ranked and now I'm playing in-house games with other competitive players. I'd rather do that instead of playing 4 games today and they're all vs. Nids just to move zero on the leaderboard.

I should NOT be grinding this much to unlock skills and abilities that other people unlock. I've matched into games with clearly Lv.10+ people who have their T10 upgrades and I can barely force myself to turn on the game to play more in its current state.

Please revert back the leveling Exp for MP because right now, it's just a grind fest. It really does feel pretty terrible, even for hardcore MP players like me. The same can be said about Skirmish - Please make it a true sandbox for players who just want to play against other players and try new builds. If I wanted to test IN with someone because they wanted to switch the matchup to test something, I should not reply with "sorry, don't have Lv.10 IN, so can't MWJ". It literally defeats the purpose of being able to test things ahead of more competitive MP games.

PS - Please note the name. Please, please, please.

last edited by LKHERO