Played my first two games tonight with my son. When he remembered to use his droids he was doing well. But just as often he'd forget about what his droids could do and got distracted by just trying to kill me.
The thing i learned: A TIE in front of an X-Wing is in trouble. But a TIE behind an X-Wing is golden.
We played a 36pt game (1 X vs. 2 TIEs). We spent a lot of time chasing each other and shooting ineffectively. And R2 paid for himself in the first half of the game. He repaired those shields about as quickly as I could knock them down. But once I was able to get both TIE's right in close and make some good rolls, I was able to rip the X-wing down pretty quick.
Then we played a 60pt game (1 X + R2 and 1 Y + the droid that can repair hull damage vs. 2 TIEs and 1 TIE-Adv + Cluster Missiles) this game went pretty late and my son kept forgetting to use his droids. I forgot to take actions with my ships most of the time too. It was way too one sided. In the initial pass he blew one TIE away and heavily damaged the second which had me worried, but after that he was never able to get me out from behind his fighters. The TIE advanced chewed the Y-wing up a hull point a turn and the X-wing faced the same problem with the remaining TIE. Had he remembered to use the droids, he might have lasted longer, but he wasn't able to sort out how to get me off of him. The Korogran turns he made usually ended in good position but bad attack rolls so he was getting more and more frustrated. Still took a long time to take the two down. Had he opted for cheaper pilots and given the Y an Ion Cannon as well as the droid it would have been a much different game.
The skills I bought for my TIE's never got used. One was because I needed to burn a point with determination, but never took a "pilot" critical. And the marksman skill seemed wasted on TIE's since they only get 2 attack dice. With such a small chance of getting a focus, and I usually opted to use his actions to barrel roll into position anyway, it was more wasted points.
Upgrades seem to be a bit situational. When they work, they are fun. But if the right things don't happen… Oh, well.