So, after a decently long absence from Armada (during which we learned X-Wing over TTS), my main play-partner and I have jumped back in with a few Clone Wars games. Our most recent game matched my Bail Organa (with two carrier-type Acclamator-I’s, a large multirole squadron presence, and a Comms Net-equipped Radiant VII) against his Count Dooku (commanding three Munificents, a decent number of Vulture droids and Grievous).
Dooku seems absolutely awful. Organa and a simple and obvious turn 1 token grab made him half useless, and Comms Net did the rest of the job almost effortlessly. My opponent correctly chose to Raid against Squadrons, Squadrons, and Navigation, and even picked what I thought were the optimal times to use them, but I basically ignored the raid tokens or cleared them easily. It certainly helped that a small bid on my part allowed me to force my opponent to take first player and pick from my objectives, but it seems silly that a 30-point commander is such a chump against not only the best commander in the opposing faction, but also a commonly-seen 2-point upgrade.
Has anyone had wildly different experiences with Dooku? Or am I right in assessing him as basically unplayable?
Thought I’d follow up on this...
My opponent and I ran the game back again, at his request, and it turned out much closer this time. I still won, and managed to play around Dooku very well, but I ended up losing the Implacable, mostly because I had been denied some early token-storing, and wasn’t able to perform a much-needed repair in the late game. in fact, it came down to about a 20-point differential, which, given how badly he ran afoul of asteroids and debris, was a lot closer than I’d have liked.
Dooku is better, I suppose, than I’d given him credit for, but I still think he’s not the sort of 30-point Commander I’d use without a Serious Plan for leveraging Raid/Slicer Tools/other dial screwage to the fullest.
I can’t imagine trying to play one of the CW factions against the whole field right yet. They just don’t have the tools, do they?
There's a list in the Vassal World Cup that's doing very well in the ranks. I didn't play against it, but it seems zapping nav tokens twice per game is pretty good.
Name: Roalds Vassal Worlds Faction: Separatist Commander: Count Dooku Munificent Star Frigate (73) • Count Dooku (30) • Wat Tambor (5) • Engine Techs (8) • Reinforced Blast Doors (5) • Linked Turbolaser Towers (7) • Sa Nalaor (5) = 133 Points Munificent Comms Frigate (70) • Rune Haako (4) • Engine Techs (8) • Expanded Hangar Bay (5) • Linked Turbolaser Towers (7) • Tide of Progress XII (2) = 96 Points Hardcell Transport (47) • Hondo Ohnaka (2) • Bomber Command Center (8) • Foreman's Labor (5) = 62 Points Squadrons: • DBS-404 (17) • 2 x Droid Tri-fighter Squadron (22) • Phlac-Arphocc Prototypes (19) • 3 x Hyena Droid Bomber Squadron (33) • DIS-T81 (17) = 108 Points Total Points: 399
My only game 1.5 game this far was my Agate rebel fleet against a Kraken separatists fleet. Kraken got used once, Agate's defence token twice...
Doku would have hurt my fleet a lot more. The seps were designed for a long-range fight as was my fleet, so there wasn't many opportunities for Kraken.
Fair assessment. Like I said, our experience with him is exactly one game deep so far, so maybe my opponent didn’t build the optimal Count Dooku fleet. I never did see which objectives he chose, because I opted to play second with my nominal (4-point?) bid... exactly because I saw Dooku and knew that he’d be far more effective if I had to fight through a tough objective. But my opponent (rightly) complained that he felt like Dooku did next-to-nothing for him, which isn’t something you want to be saying about a 30 point Commander.
More data is probably required. I’m just a little surprised at the fact that they’d give us only two Commanders for each of the new factions, and make one of them so bad against one of his opposite numbers. I guess it’d be different if he were cheaper... 23, 25 maybe, but at 30 points, you want to feel like your Commander is helping you.
As for the blow-by-blow, we played my Infested Fields (which was probably a mistake on his part; speed 2 Munificents have a hell of a time evading moving rocks and space slugs). I can’t remember everything that happened, as the game took place at least four days ago, but between me socking away a couple Squad tokens on turn one, and having the Comms Net and Bail (4 Nav, 1 Engineering, with Squadrons all day on my two Acc-I’s), I was able to basically nullify 75% of Dooku’s Squadron raid power over the two critical turns of initial squadron engagement. The Nav raid that Dooku had left over was similarly ineffectual, as my Comms Net canceled it on the one ship of mine that most needed to push the Nav command through. So basically, his 30-point Commander cost me (over the whole game) the ability to activate about four squadrons and one point of yaw on a ship that didn’t really need it. I still won the squadron mini game with ease, and torched 2 of his 3 Munificents without taking any capital ship losses.
I will probably try to build a Dooku fleet at some point, and it’s probably gonna involve something like a 15-point bid to ensure we’re playing my objective, and a whole bunch of objectives that lean hard into needing specific commands or which also supply raid tokens. Maybe that will let Dooku shine. But he strikes me as a Commander that you NEED to build around before he’s even decent... like a Konstantine or Sato. And that doesn’t bode well for his general utility, especially at 30 points.
Kraken can be good. He doesn’t come out great compared to LTTs on Munis, and he feels pretty redundant after that to me, but I love him with Hardcells.
Against a group of command 1 ships Dooku is a total pain; they can’t store enough tokens to deal with the problem. If a carrier fleet tries to leverage Comms Net for the second token they don’t get to activate the carrier right away, giving you an extra chance to hit them first with those fragile droids. The same is true if they have Hondo too, just pushed out to the second carrier. This pressures them to initiate the dogfight early in the round and achieve carrier > comms > end of round > carrier, which you can use against them with pass tokens, red range flak and some of the fastest squadrons in the game to sit back or strike on the last activation assuming parity. I’d be interested in the blow-by-blow of your game, because the details are important here.
As you say, I don’t like Dooku against “well-rounded” fleets with extra tokens they don’t need, but he can shine against skew, which often runs at an overstretch. Dooku is specific matchup coverage you have to plan to leverage. Grievous or someone similar is probably going to replace him in many lists for that reason.
Isn’t the opportunity cost that you don’t get to take Kraken, who’s very, very powerful, for the same price?
As far as three turns going by with only one command having been resolved... turn one is often a fairly unimportant turn, used for banking tokens anyway. Turn two, you know you’re probably getting squadron raided, but the turn one token wipes that, and because you have Organa feeding you all the Navigation (with a side of Engineering) you want, your ship dials are just squadrons all the way down. So turn two, you lose a token, keep the dial, and alpha strike their squadrons (or ships, if Dooku didn’t bring a fighter screen). At that point, you’re kind of already winning, which means Dooku didn’t do his job. If he could take three of the same raid token, he could perhaps help as a catch-up mechanism, but he seemed pretty miserable. The fact that I was able to Comms Net away half of his effect on the second and third raids was really just the nail in the coffin for my opponent. And if wasn’t like I went into the game with any foreknowledge of my opponen’s fleet. We just hit the table, and I knew I had a major advantage from the start.
Maybe if one builds hard into command screwage to maximize Dooku’s power, he feels better, but I think that would require more than a nominal bid, and very careful objective selection.
Dooku is... interesting. He neither counters nor is countered by Bail/Thrawn/Tarkin, etc. because if they deal with him directly they offer no benefit and vice versa.
You can lean into him with more control (slicers, Surprise Attack, etc.) or make your opponent want specific dials (Abandoned Mining Facility, Ion Storm) and it's good against a wider array of things but at the end of the day he's situationally poor, which is never a great look for a 30 point commander.
On the other hand, he can put a lot of strain on fleets without too many spare tokens ( especially min/maxing carrier lists, new token dependent upgrades, or low command values of MSU), gives your opponent chances to make mistakes, influences activation timing and doesn't really carry an opportunity cost for the CIS player just yet.
I like him because I like 134 points of squadrons, and will probably continue liking him once he becomes more of a luxury item.
Well, Organa's dial doesn't clear out Dooku, it has to be the ships actual dial, so if you take squadron turn 1, and get a Raid token for squadron turn 2, then yes, you can discard the squadron token to get rid of the raid and have 1 turn of squadron command. Turn 3 rolls around, you have no squadron token, and you get raided again - now you have to discard your dial. 3 turns have gone by and you have only resolved 1 command. I would say he works quite well, and worked for me when I used him. He's tricky, but he works. Comms Net muddies the water a bit, but then that is a 40ish point ship not really doing much else, that has to be fit into your fleet somehow. I haven't flown with Dooku against CN though, so I can't really speak to how effective it is.