thanks for the feedback. i am using the fire team consistent with the rules in the core rulebook with the exception that they are made up purely of elites instead of troopers. this is the “boss” level fight at the climax of the squad’s mission, so i wanted to put them in a little more peril than regular fire teams.
in terms of effect, the only real impact of a fire team composed entirely of elites versus troopers or troopers + elite is that the fire team itself is harder to dismantle as it requires two harms to eliminate a member, though the 5 armor soak contributes to that too. the best tool in PC’s kit to counter this resilience is the st. george’s blade, as the grievous quality allows them to one hit fire team members. otherwise, though rolling 9d20 on a spitfire as an opening salvo after seizing momentum was scary, they’ve been able to handle the Hollow Men without too much fuss. only one net wound inflicted so far on the PCs and (ironically) it was inflicted by a lone Hollow Man who had respawned after they killed a fire team member. with 3 to 5 armor soak on either side, it’s made the fight longer than intended, though i also jammed my players up with a plot twist after five rounds.
we ended up having to split the fight over two sessions, with round 2 slated for next week. though the fire team and the Hollow Men in general seemed to have upped the ante significantly, i probably could have wreaked more havoc with the elites acting separately and put the players in more tactically challenging situations that way. but ti would have been harder to manage from the start, so i did enjoy the efficiency of having one beast with ten wounds instead of five with two right from the jump. knowing what i know now, however, fifteen “shells” in waves capped at five is a bit too much of a slog. but not really a threat of a tpk in a HI v. HI fight without too many special weapons to speak of.