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How to Succeed in Fleet Arena (Pre-2.0)

Discussion in 'Guides' started by SumiXam, Dec 27, 2017.

  1. SumiXam

    SumiXam Moderator Staff Member

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    With the relatively recent addition of crystals to the fleet rewards many more people have become, or want to become more active in this area of the game. It can be very frustrating finding good resources on being successful here because much of the community wrote off ships as "dumb" and now there is suddenly a surge of activity. I've enjoyed ships from the beginning and I rank at the top of my shard nearly every day. Hopefully this overview will help people decide what ships to farm and what works well. This is by no means the end all, be all guide for ships, but should give anyone who cares some food for thought.

    Pick a fleet commander and get him geared up as high as possible and work on getting his ship abilities maxed out. Prioritize the ultimate ability and the best utility abilities. You can speed this up by purchasing prestige through the squad arena shop. All of the fleet commanders can consistently win on offense. It's the defense that makes a difference.
    • Chimaera/Thrawn -- Arguably the best fleet commander in the game right now. If run with the right ships, it's probably one of the best defensive setups in the game. This is the only capital ship that only obtainable through a special event. You will need both Phoenix Ships at 7* and Home One at 7* in order to max this ship. Luckily it is still viable at 5*. This ship is slow, so running fighters that can manipulate capital ship turn meter is strongly recommended e.g. Imperial TIE Fighter & TIE Reaper.
    • Executrix/Tarkin -- There are lots of Tarkin fanboys out there. In fact, you'll probably see mostly Tarkin fleets at the top of your shard if they aren't running Thrawn. The thing that makes Tarkin so good is his ultimate ability, Tie Strike, which most of time will wipe out the enemy fleet or leave it on life support. This fleet can be a bit more RNG dependent on offense unless you are running TIE Fighter and TIE Reaper (seeing a theme? :cool:)
    • Endurance/Mace -- Very underrated fleet commander. Mace is exceptionally easy to gear, which makes him a good fill in while working on other projects. Fortune Favors the Bold is the go to ability with Mace fleets. It grants Valor to your fleet which grants the Endurance 20% turn meter. If you can keep the Valor going, you can utterly dominate on offense. This strength is precisely what makes Mace fleets weaker on defense. The AI doesn't spam Fortune Favors the Bold like it should and it makes Mace fleets a target. If you don't have Tie Reaper, it is much more consistent on offense than Tarkin. I used to climb with Mace and run my last battle with Tarkin for a better defense.
    • Home One/Ackbar -- Probably my least favorite of the capital ships. It's kind of a middle of the road ship that doesn't necessarily excel at anything. It is needed to get the Chimaera though, so it can't be ignored. It can do well, but because hardly anybody runs it, you will be targeted in arena.

    One of the first things a player should look at with fleet is what pilots and ships they already have and what they need to farm. The GW shop ships are good to farm, especially if you have a pilot already. Stars, gear, and 5-dot mods matter a lot for pilots. While investing a little in some lesser used pilots isn't a terrible idea, keep in mind that your ultimate goal would be to have 7*, G11/12 pilots, with maxed 5-dot mods, so dumping too many resources into unneeded pilots could end up biting you in the end. There are some very good ships that should be on your short list though:
    • Vader/TIE Advance -- Irresistible Target Lock (TL) on basic attack and can dispel buffs if the opponent has TL. This is a staple ship in many top fleets.
    • TIE Fighter Pilot/Imperial TIE Fighter -- Very fast ship with a chance to inflict TL on basic. This ship usually goes first if TFP is geared well enough. When it dodges, which it does often, it gives your capital ship ship turn meter (TM). Another staple for top fleets.
    • Biggs/Biggs' X-Wing -- Probably the most essential ship of all. This is your tank, your distraction, your taunter, your time buyer. This is the reason you want some good TL inflicting ships in your fleet. Biggs taunts every time TL is inflicted on an enemy ship and regenerates protection. This makes him relatively durable as long as you can keep the TLs flowing.
    • Fives/Umbaran Starfighter -- Dispels buffs on basic if the opponent has TL. Inflicts TL and massive damage the more TL'd enemies on special. To top it off he's fairly durable and is good in the starting lineup or as an early reinforcement.
    • FO TIE Pilot/FO TIE Fighter -- One of the hardest hitting ships in the game. Has a chance to double tap on basic and inflict TL. That means two chances to inflict TL. The real magic is with the special attack that can be run over and over again because the cooldown refreshes if the opponent has TL.
    • Maul/Scimitar -- Probably the single best 1st reinforcement ship in the game because the special puts the entire fleet except one under stealth and leaves it with retribution. Good options for retribution are Fives, Tie Pilot, Biggs, or Boba.
    • Death Trooper & Shoretrooper/TIE Reaper -- This has replaced Fives in my starting lineup. Every time a ship is destroyed the opposing capital ship loses TM. It can also dispel buffs on special. It's a fragile ship, so it needs to be protected. It's also a very difficult farm. The good thing is that it's viable at unlock if the pilots are decently geared.
    • KRU/TIE Silencer -- Fully upgraded, it's as fast as the TIE Fighter and hits like a freight train if it goes unchecked. Now that it's farmable, we are likely going to start seeing a lot of it in the top of the fleet leader boards.
    • Boba/Slave I -- A very good early ship to have and can ride in the starting lineup for a long time, but once you start reaching the upper ranks it's much better suited as a reinforcement. Can inflict TL on basic and has high damage special attacks. This makes the short list because most players will farm Boba since he's one of the best early to mid game leaders.
    • Sabine, Ezra, Chopper/Phantom II -- The only reason this is on the short list is because it is required to get the Chimaera, which is currently the best capital ship in the game. It's a decent ship in its own right, but really needs to be run with the Ghost. Taking up two slots in the lineup is a pretty high cost and gearing 3 pilots is a big ask.
    • Hera, Kanan, Zeb/ Ghost -- The only reason this is on the short list is because it is required to get the Chimaera, which is currently the best capital ship in the game. It's a decent ship in its own right, but really needs to be run with the Phantom II. Taking up two slots in the lineup is a pretty high cost and gearing 3 pilots is a big ask.
    Honorable Mention
    • Gar Saxon & Imperial Super Commando/Gauntlet Starfighter -- A great ship, but the pilots aren't so much used except possibly in DS Territory Battle. Dispels debuffs on all allies and can turn the tide of battle. It's one of those ships to keep on the radar, but shouldn't be a top priority.
    • Bistan & Scarif Rebel Pathfinder/Bistan's U-Wing -- This ship can crank out a lot of TM boosts to allies. I don't have it on the short list because this would be a fleet arena only farm. The pilots aren't really super useful anywhere else. Pathfinder can be good on a Rogue One squad for Territory Battles, but that's about it. That being said, this is a great ship to have if you have the resources and ability to farm it and gear the pilots. You will need a fifth Rebel ship to get the Chimaera though, so this could be a good option. It's better than Cassian's.
    • Wedge/Wedge's X-Wing -- A high damage ship that can do okay, but it's very squishy. It's worth having if you already have Wedge and can be useful, but he can be a liability. Will likely need to be farmed to get Chimaera though.
    • Poe/Poe's X-Wing -- Deals a ton of damage with his special attack that can't be evaded, but the ship is exceptionally squishy. Can be effective as a reinforcement, but generally doesn't last very long.
    • Cassian, K2SO, Jyn/Cassian's U-Wing -- Could potentially be a ship used to get the Chimaera. You'll likely already be farming and gearing the pilots for the Territory Battles, so it could be easier to get than Bistan's U-Wing.
    • Sun Fac/SF's Geo Starfighter -- Taunts when the opponent whose turn it is has a buff. Can stun on special if the opponent has a buff. Sometimes can be seen running with a double tank setup with Biggs. It's a good ship, but most newer players won't have farmed Sun Fac. He was meta in the arena a long time ago, so some still have him. He is still used in some P3 HAAT squads. If you already have SF, this might well be worth the farm. If not, I'd probably put it further down the priority list.
    • Scavenger Rey & Finn/Millennium Falcon -- Great ship on the attack, but can hurt you on defense.
    There are many other decent ships out there depending on what pilots you already have. The ships listed above are what I consider to be the most worthwhile investment in resources that will give you the most bang in the fleet arena.
     
    Marc Tessier likes this.
  2. Electricboa

    Electricboa Moderator Staff Member

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    Very good guide, lots of info.
     
  3. Marc Tessier

    Marc Tessier Well-Known Member

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    Nice write up, Sumi.

    I'm still running Ackbar and Home One. Lol. I tried Tarkin and the Executrix, but find my ships get torn apart much quicker, so I switched back. Ships are funny. My power is 340k, but yesterday I easily defeated a Tarkin fleet with 470k power. The guy just had a bad setup.

    I probably will switch to Tarkin and the Executrix again. I need one piece of gear to bump Tarkin to G11 and I have saved my crystals so I can get the Executrix to 7 stars when the event opens again. But ultimately will switch to Thrawn and the Chimaera once that event returns since my Thrawn is already at G12.

    I think Poe and his X-wing deserve more love. His first special is great at taking out that pesky Tie Fighter.
     
  4. SumiXam

    SumiXam Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks @Marc Tessier. One thing about Executrix is it can be quite RNG dependent on offense unless you are running both Tie Fighter and Reaper. I didn't like running Tarkin on offense until the Reaper made it into my starting lineup. That RNG can work doubly against you if the opponent is running a Reaper and you aren't.

    If someone doesn't have a Reaper, Endurance is quite easy to climb with. There are still a few guys on my shard that use Endurance fleets and they make it to the top of the leader board for their PO. I was one of those guys until recently. The problem is that they tend to get knocked back a lot because the AI for Endurance just doesn't play to its strengths, but I do think it would hold better than a Home One fleet. I don't see any Home One fleets in the top 50 of my shard.

    Opponent power levels beyond around 320k - 350k tend to not matter a ton, which a fairly large exception. Like most high level indicators, power level is a very birds eye view of your opponent. I would tend to be more concerned going up against a 5* Chimaera fleet with a 380k power rating than a 7* Executrix fleet with a 450k power rating. The reason being that the Executrix fleet's power is inflated by having a full assortment of reinforcements. Endurance tends to be the fleet that can most effectively use all reinforcements, while others tend to not get to them all before the battle is over. The 5* Chimaera fleet indicates someone with very high gear pilots, which means fast ships and that can make for a quick and painful loss.

    Poe made the honorable mention list. ;) Definitely a ship that can be worthwhile to go after, but I think there are better options especially if someone wants to compete at the top rankings. I tend to use Vader to target the Tie whenever possible. Thrawn's basic allows you to pick any one of your fighters to attack, so that makes knocking the opposing Tie Fighter out fairly simple most of the time. Poe is just too fragile to last more than a couple of turns and too many stars need to align in order to make that special count when it needs to. If Poe is in the starting lineup then he's one of the first ships targeted. If he's a reinforcement, he tends to be too little too late to make much of a difference in the battle. Just my .02 though.
     
  5. Electricboa

    Electricboa Moderator Staff Member

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    The biggest issue with Poe is he's a glass cannon. I do see some people running him (I assume to counter TIEs), but I don't know if it's good outside of that. After all, it's not like the AI tries to make you target the TIE all the time, so it's usually easy to avoid it.

    Even with the Reaper, though, RNG plays a big role. I've had a lot of battles where my TIE and FO TIE fail to get TL and it hurts. Plus, there are just the bad days. Sometimes, it's like the game is out to get you. Where all their ships dodge like TIEs (even Biggs), and your TIE gets hit every time.
     
  6. AhnNu Rie

    AhnNu Rie Active Member

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    Boa, you just described half my days in either arena, either I'm the hammer and everyone gets blown away, or I'm the nail and I can't hit a single target.
     
  7. Marc Tessier

    Marc Tessier Well-Known Member

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    At what point does TIE Reaper become viable?

    I have mine at 53/65. Shore is 7 stars and G10 and I just bumped Death Trooper to 4 stars and G8 today.

    Also just spent the 800 crystals to get Executrix to 7 stars today.
     
  8. Electricboa

    Electricboa Moderator Staff Member

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    I never really have that kind of issue in the regular Arena. My team can usually bounce back from most everything. Once in a great while, I get really bad RNG, but it's a lot more common in the Fleet Arena. I think it's because the evasion is higher and the kits don't have as much as characters.

    As for the viability of the Reaper, it's a tough one. The ship is a bit fragile, so it's never going to hold up against that many hits. I think mine can take 3 or 4 and it's over. That's with 7 star pilots, G12 DT, G11 Shore, and 5 stars on the ship. My guess is your Death Trooper is too low. I started using it around 4 stars, but both pilots were G11 at the time, and even that was a bit hit and miss. I'd say G10 minimum.

    There are a few team compositions, but I use this:

    TIE Advanced, TIE Fighter, FO TIE Fighter, Biggs' X-Wing, and TIE Reaper

    Reinforcements: Scimitar, Slave I, Cassian's U-Wing, and Wedge's X-Wing​

    What you want to do is apply TL as soon as possible to get Biggs to taunt. This protects your Reaper. Biggs will take the brunt of their special attacks and probably fall. Ideally, this will happen before Tarkin goes. This way, you can bring in Scimitar and focus your TIE. It protects your Reaper and forces them to attack your TIE. That will be boosting Tarkin's TM, while every ship you take out will reduce their capital ships' TM. The other reinforments are utility ships. Slave I is for damage and being able to hit around a taunt, if you have a lot of TL on the field. Cassian's U-Wing is to counter their TIE. You can call in Vader and it'll go down pretty quickly. Wedge is just because I had an empty spot. He's an attacker, but I rarely use him. If I had my Gauntlet further along, I'd probably use that. And if you're using Thrawn, Cassian's U-Wing is replaced with Thrawn's basic attack. That's the basic recipe for success with the Reaper.
     
  9. Marc Tessier

    Marc Tessier Well-Known Member

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    I won't put Reaper in until it's five stars and then see how it goes.

    I just switched my line-up to this:

    Tarkin's Executrix

    Vader's TIE Advanced, TIE Fighter, FO TIE Fighter, Biggs' X-Wing and Fives' Umbaran Starfighter

    Reinforcements: Scimitar, Slave 1, Poe's X-Wing and Wedge's X-Wing

    In my first battle with this line-up against a 7-star Executrix, I didn't lose a single ship.
     
  10. SumiXam

    SumiXam Moderator Staff Member

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    I ran Tie Reaper at unlock, but I had both pilots at 7* & G11. It's a fragile ship regardless and the idea is to keep it protected through Biggs' taunt and then under stealth when you bring the Scimitar in. I agree with Boa that your DT is probably not geared high enough for you to run it, but once you get him to G10/11 I'd give it shot and see how it does. I did find it to be more durable at 4*. Mine is now at 5* and I usually don't lose it unless I get some very bad RNG with TLs in the beginning.

    Your new starting lineup looks very strong. It's what I ran until I put the Reaper in and it's the backbone of nearly every top fleet on my shard with only a little variance.

    The strategy that Boa outlines near the end of his post is exactly what I do. I do run a slightly different reinforcement lineup, but the tactics are the same. Here's my setup:
    • Starting lineup -- Biggs, FO TIE, TIE, Reaper, Vader
    • Reinforcements -- Scimitar, Fives, Boba
    Glad to hear you've been successful. Let us know how you fare on defense. I'm going to guess quite a bit better. A lot of people wrote off ships and still don't do much more than one battle a day. This makes moving up the ladder a bit easier than squad arena most of the time.
     
  11. Marc Tessier

    Marc Tessier Well-Known Member

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    I will have to try Boa's strategy and leave TIE Fighter exposed to the enemy when I call Scimitar as a reinforcement. The 30% TM gain for each dodge is pretty huge. I have always liked exposing Fives' ship when I call Scimitar as the offense down/defense down debuffs that get spammed on multiple enemies is quite effective.

    My new fleet holds much better. I'm sticking in the 20s. I've done one battle today (3 hours until my payout) and I'm at 19. My ship shard seems quite chilled out. Even in the past when I made the effort, I could just crack the top 20 with Ackbar's Home One at 6 stars. I'm not as easy a target now as my power went from 340k to 380k with the Executrix at 7 stars. Hopefully people skip over me and find someone else to fight. With a bit more effort I may be able to crack top 10.

    I'm currently working on promoting Biggs' to G12. If his ship can take a couple more hits that would be huge.

    Thanks gentlemen.
     
  12. Electricboa

    Electricboa Moderator Staff Member

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    You might want to see if your Fleet Arena has a Discord or LINE group. That seems to be the only way to stay at the top for some Arenas. You get to know when people payout, so you can avoid making enemies. Plus, those groups tend to protect their own. My Fleet Arena is like that. Anyone not in the group is more of a target, and sometimes people ask others who have leftover battles after their payout to knock an outsider back. It's not as organized as my regular Arena, though. I think it's because the Fleet Arena doesn't give as much in the way of Crystals. My regular Arena is a lot more organized and newcomers that mess with payout can get punished. I remember early last year (speaking of which, happy New Year, everyone), they knocked someone from 1 back to 20 over the course of about 10 - 15 min. As soon as one person finished a battle, another was waiting to start one. There's nowhere near that level of coordination for my Fleet Arena.
     
  13. flair

    flair Member

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    these are major guidelines for succeeding in fleet arena, thank you guys
    I switched H1 for Endurance and benched Wedge's X-wing and now all is great in the western front

    for the third day in a row I sit comfortably in the first 20 - today 15 after beating some pal with fleet power 378 000 (mine is barely 308 thou')
    I'm collecting shards for all three major tie fighters (plus slowly grinding tie reaper, good it's the same battles as Shoretrooper) but still need some 30 shards for a 5* Cassian U-Wing to unlock Thrawn capital ship
    in fleet shipments I still grab any Phantom shards to get it to 6* - so if I managed to get Cassian U-Wing to 6* before Imperial Chimaera event returns, I would go for a 6* one

    how hard is it? my R1 (except for Chaze) is almost bare so Cassian U-Wing would basically be a luxury passenger there
     
  14. flair

    flair Member

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    I couldn't find any reliable info about something that bothers me:
    how to mod pilots? what's to focus on?
    does the speed do something on them? crit? or should they be just given some mk 5 health mods and adios muchachos?
    also: what about modding fleet commander?
     
  15. SumiXam

    SumiXam Moderator Staff Member

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    The only thing that matters with fleet arena is level 15, 5-dot mods. It doesn't matter what the stats are. It's a great place to dump lesser or non-squad arena worthy mods and get a good boost to your ship stats.
     
  16. Marc Tessier

    Marc Tessier Well-Known Member

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    That's good to know. I've always just modded characters based on their abilities and what I think fits best without worrying about ships. I was never sure how they affected ships.
     
  17. SR-71 Blackbird

    SR-71 Blackbird Active Member

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    ElectricBoa, when you say to check if a fleet Arena has a Discord or LINE group, do you mean there are basically loose alliances? Does that apply to regular Arena as well? If so, any ways to avoid getting taken out by one?
     
  18. SumiXam

    SumiXam Moderator Staff Member

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    Each arena shard is different. I know both my squad and fleet chats don't allow new people to join unless they can make it into the top 20 consistently and if their payout isn't already full of people there. Keep in mind that both of my shards are mature and have been established for a while. My squad arena PO is the busiest time on my shard, along with the PO hour before mine, so we don't tend to allow new people to join who have POs during that time. There are six people in my PO that all make it into the top rankings everyday, so we tend to rotate.

    My fleet arena is a bit different, but pretty much follows the same loose guidelines. Luckily for me, the busiest time on the shard is about 6-7 hours before my PO and I only share a PO with one other guy in the chat. There don't seem to be any others that are active during our PO either, so we just swap 1st and 2nd everyday.

    Shards use a variety of different 3rd party apps to communicate. The two most popular tend to be Line & Discord. My squad shard uses Line and my fleet shard uses Discord. Generally speaking, people don't hit each other within 2 hours before their PO if at all possible. After your PO is over, you're free game, but most people try to avoid hitting shard mates in the chat if they can.

    The only way to avoid these groups is to join them. If you start ranking at the top, you will likely be tagged as a trouble maker because you could be messing with their group's pre-established PO rotation. Sometimes they will reach out to players and other times people search on swgoh.gg for shard mates who have Discord/Line contact info listed and reach out from there.
     
  19. Electricboa

    Electricboa Moderator Staff Member

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    It's pretty much the same for me. My regular arena actually has two groups. The Discord one has more people, but it a bit overcrowded. The guy running it was letting in too many people and it was getting to be chaos. One payout had 9 people in it. I'm not in that group. I'm in the LINE group, which seems to be the more for the best/most competent players. The people outside it doesn't know it exists, but there's a lot of organization there. Just like Sumi said, if someone new shows up, the first reaction is to be suspicious.

    They can be like loose alliances. Let me give an example, my payout is at 6:00 PM (local time). There's one guy with a payout 30 min before mine, but he hasn't made it up since Jedi Rey came out. I used to purposely avoid taking #1 so that he could get it. The only other people that have a payout before mine is 4 or 5 hours before. But there are a bunch of people with payouts 1 and 2 hours after me. When I move up, I do my best to avoid attacking them. In turn, they try their best to avoid high traffic ranks (like 10, 9, and 8) so that people who have payouts before them can get up. And if there's no path, I can ask them to move up so I can get through. Or they just say I can hit them. Way back before GK/Barriss teams rose up, I used to take my mods off of R2 after I got to #1, so the guy with a payout an hour after me could win and take #1.

    The main strength of organization with the LINE group is more about helping each other. If there's a trouble maker, people who are moving up or already have had their payout will attack them and move them back. If they become a problem, they have a train run on them. Let's say they're on 3, somone on 7 attacks them and then the one on 11 attacks as soon as the player was moved back to 7. They get pushed back without any way to protect themelves. I think the longest one was from 1 to the 20s over about 15 or 20 min.

    That's all the LINE group, though. It's probably about as ideal an arena group as you can get. There are a few people in both LINE and Discord, and from what I've heard Discord isn't anywhere near as organized. Some people can't/won't work together. Some are just incompetent. The other day, there were 2 people on Discord trying to attack a new player who made it up to the top. They were trying for a good 20 min. and kept missing. At one point, one of them actually attacked the wrong person and wasted a battle. So you won't really know how organized a group is until you're in it.

    It is common to swap payout ranks. My fleet arena is on Discord and there are 3 other people with my payout time. We rotate #1-4 every day. My fleet arena isn't as cooperative as my LINE group, but the other 3 players know what they're doing, so we do our best to work together. For example, I was on #4 today, but the guy who was supposed to take #3 posted that he wasn't going to make it and I could have it. That's happens every now and then. We also try to work around each other or ask someone to move if they're in the way.

    On the other hand, there are some cases where people don't rotate. For example, in my regular arena, I take #1 every day, though there are 3 other people with the same payout (all in the Discord, not LINE). They don't always make it up to the top and can't always win against our whale, who is usually in the top 3. My deal with them is I take 1 and they can figure out 2-4 as they wish. And that's for a few reasons. For one, I've been getting #1 since about January or February of 2016. The other 3 started making it to the top about 2 or 3 months ago. I've seen way too many people who burn out and just vanish from the top 50 over the years. And they take it. It's easier to have me friendly with them than an enemy. They play nice and pretty much guarantee they get a top 4 spot because pretty much the rest of the top 15-20 is either people in the LINE group or offline because their payout has past. That acts as a shield. The flip side is it could be dangerous if they're surrounded by people who could move them back, especially since their payout is coming up, so they'd be moving up anyway. I'm not the only one that has that deal. There are two people who have payouts an hour after mine, one in the LINE group gets #1 every day and the other in the Discord gets #2. Of course, that's just a couple isolated cases. Most of the time, people rotate.

    It is better to have a group than not, since it's only to your advantage to know when other people have payouts. The last thing you want is to get in a back-and-forth with someone when you don't have to. Once somone has had their payout, the vast majority are okay with you attacking them. There are a few rare examples of jerks, though. They'll move up and screw with other peoples' payouts for fun and waste Crystals on refreshes because they're just in it to hurt others regardless of what it costs them. The good news is there aren't many of them and most arena groups do their best to push them out.
     
  20. flair

    flair Member

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    thanks to your advice yesterday I finished at #5

    today I was #8 but coulda been #4 as well as three minutes before my payout I almost got him
    my umbaran was on the brink of demise and he had all five ships, all with very little health though, my special took three of them, wedge came from the bench, missed barely breathing tie fighter and then tarkin executed me :(
    what a miss
     

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