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Author Topic: The Scarab?  (Read 2983 times)

Offline Dogbarian

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The Scarab?
« on: May 07, 2021, 07:20:33 pm »
Having a hard time figuring out where the utility of this ship is (this discussion assumes you get your Codex ships early enough to be useful, ie, before you develop your own other aircraft).  I picked Red, so I have a choice between it, the Snake, and the Scorpion.  Given the following, I didn't even buy one yet, because I don't see it being useful.  The Scorpion is obviously the main transport, happens to be fast enough to keep up with the Runabout, and catch the slower Megapol/Bandit/civvy stuff (although vs Megapol and Bandits, it's probably better to use the Snake to avoid damage).  The Snake is a good multi-role ship, serving as light transport/intercepter, being durable enough with its shield to deal with most interceptions without taking (much) damage, although being slower, it can't catch some things.  I had exactly one Heavy weapon (the codex choice) until eventually unlocking the contact to buy the Ramjet, which has expensive ammo.  So the Scarab's two heavy weapon slots don't seem that great early, I've put my one heavy weapon on either the Scorpion or one of my Snakes as it is. It's slow, so it can't catch anything but slow civvy traffic, although I could see maybe using it to escort the Scorpion vs something with radar.  And the Snake does that better anyway (and can easily handle most of the small ship crews by itself anyway).  The Snake is even better as a pilot trainer too, since it uses 3 instead of 2.

Does it become more useful after I start unlocking STC modules and other upgrades (I think some of those fit in Heavy slots, so that could come into play then)?  The boosted power/damage from its special ability seems to imply it should be used as a heavy intercepter, but that seems a little insane until I get better weapons (and its lack of speed works against it there, too) and by then, I'll probably have better aircraft.  I don't even see a way to maybe "improve" it to the point of where I think it would be worth having, although maybe increasing the armor from 6 (the lowest weapon power of enemy craft looks like 15, I'm guessing they do the same 50 to 150% possible damage roll?  Or do they work differently?).

What am I missing here?

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2021, 07:43:10 pm »
The Scarab is a heavy interceptor. It is very sturdy for its class, and also it has an innate bonus to damage (regardless of weapon), which is also not to be scoffed at. Its main disadvantage is low speed, which limits its usefulness, but still I really like this one.

Offline Iazo

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2021, 11:11:32 am »
Remember that red is not the only codex that exists. Try playing green without Scarab.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2021, 02:24:31 pm »
Remember that red is not the only codex that exists. Try playing green without Scarab.

Yes, agreed. But still, when I play Red, the Scarab remains my main attack craft until much later. The Snake is good for sea ops, and the Scorpion for land assaults.

Offline Dogbarian

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2021, 06:37:47 pm »
Remember that red is not the only codex that exists. Try playing green without Scarab.

I realize that part - but the ability to intercept relies on speed. Gold has the Hawk, Green has the Worm, Red/Grey have the Snake. How do you use the Scarab effectively?  That’s assuming the Worm is effective, of course.

Or since I already have access to HK, Piranha, Shark, should I just move on and try it next playthrough?

Offline username

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2021, 12:40:42 am »
Does it become more useful after I start unlocking STC modules and other upgrades (I think some of those fit in Heavy slots, so that could come into play then)?  The boosted power/damage from its special ability seems to imply it should be used as a heavy intercepter, but that seems a little insane until I get better weapons (and its lack of speed works against it there, too) and by then, I'll probably have better aircraft.  I don't even see a way to maybe "improve" it to the point of where I think it would be worth having, although maybe increasing the armor from 6 (the lowest weapon power of enemy craft looks like 15, I'm guessing they do the same 50 to 150% possible damage roll?  Or do they work differently?).
Based on my experiences with my Red Codex play, Scarab was of very limited use. It does great damage with the weapons it can carry, but its terrible speed (1900) limits it to intercepting only things slower than it is, none of which are actually armed in any real way. On rare occasions you might manage to bait an HK into you, since the only way you're getting into a fight with anything that can actually shoot at you is if you convince them to chase you, seeing as the speed on the Scarab is basically nonexistent. Unfortunately, none of the big targets will actually ever pursue you. No HK battleships or anything. While it has potentially amazing firepower, the problem is that none of it matters if you can't get to the battle. The only thing that can salvage the Scarab from the junkpile of near-uselessness would be somehow finding enough orbs to make an Ethyr-X, wihch would boost its speed to 5500, enough to actually intercept things. Anything less than the top-tier Ethyr drive would not be sufficient to actually catch anything.

As there is nothing close to a viable source of Orbs that I know of, good luck with that one. If you somehow manage to cobble one together, THEN maybe you can buy a Scarab. Otherwise it's a waste of money. The very niche purpose of baiting HKs, none of which are capital-grade threats anyway, does not really justify the cost and hangar bay.

The same problem plagues the "ultimate" fighter, the Dragon, which is useless junk for all the same reasons: It's too slow to actually fight anything that would need that level of firepower. The result is that for all your research, you get a heavily armed transport without aux capacity. Totally useless.

Remember that red is not the only codex that exists. Try playing green without Scarab.
Green doesn't change anything that makes the Scarab not useless, far as I know.

Offline legionof1

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2021, 09:50:43 am »
I will point out that UFOs do not always tear around at maximum speed. Aside from base attackers, the flight routines are explicitly designed to allow opportunity to engage. Just because your slower doesn't mean you cant get an engagement. Granted faster is easier, but hey STC slot means you have pretty easy access to another 650 speed, assuming retculians show up.

Offline username

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Re: The Scarab?
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2021, 10:18:34 am »
I will point out that UFOs do not always tear around at maximum speed.
And since I have no means of making them not do this, this is still irrelevant. A useful plan only involves factors you can control. If you can't control it, it's not part of the plan.

Aside from base attackers, the flight routines are explicitly designed to allow opportunity to engage.
So the one thing you'd actually need to intercept is the thing you never can. Useless!

Granted faster is easier, but hey STC slot means you have pretty easy access to another 650 speed, assuming retculians show up.
Raising it by +650 speed doesn't enable you to intercept anything new, however. Going from 1900 to 2550 just lets you fail at intercepting Heavy Freighters, which are 2600 and thus you still fail. Everything else is still faster than that. There is absolutely no difference between a speed of 1 and a speed of N-1 when it comes to intercepting something of speed N.

The closest thing Red has to a usable codex ship is the Snake, which makes a passable upgrade to your Airbus, goes underwater, and the shield lets it get into fights with Raider Barques with impunity, but like everything else, is too slow to actually intercept anything. And the internal layout and spawn points are awful. But at least it's not the Scorpion. Scorpion is a deathtrap as you will die instantly on turn 1 before the enemy has a chance to even take its actual turn if you use it as a dropship and it's still too slow to be an interceptor, although sticking a fusion reactor on it will boost its speed to a usable level.

I used to think the Scarab was nice, but after a full Red playthrough, I came to realize it was actually almost useless and I just had an expensive white elephant I was using to shoot down civilians and HKs.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2021, 10:20:59 am by username »