First off, everyone at the tournament seemed to have a good time, and everyone that I played against were good sports and were great to talk strategies and tactics with. Thank you to FFG and all of the judges. They were all very helpful and just made it a great day. I have to say I really came away glad to have met so many good people, and it really made for an enjoyable day.
We had 24 people. I played: Darth vader with Swarm tactics, Howlrunner with swarm tactics, Obsidian, and 3 Academy Pilots. The theory behind my squad is to keep everyone within 1 of Howlrunner for rerolling dice, which I typically need. Vader gives swarm tactics to one AP, and Howlrunner does the same with another. If I'm facing a Rebel squad, their rookies are level 2, so I'm getting 5 shots in before their rookies attack. Since my AP's go first, I can also use my AP's to block their ships, thus taking away their actions. The trick is to keep my squad close to each other, making the best use of Howlrunner's ability, which doesn't always work out.
One of the main reasons I went to Worlds was to branch out from my local gaming group and see what other people are playing and how they are playing this game. Since this game is fairly new, I really wanted to learn about what other squads and strategies people were using. From what i could see, i think there was about half and half split between Rebels and Imperials, but the main gripe was that mostly the Rebels played Rebels and Imperials played Imperials. There wasn't nearly as much rebels vs imps as there should have been.
My first game was against Thomas from Milwaukee. He had 7 TIEs, so between us we had 13 TIEs on the board. Lemme just say, Imp vs Imp battles tend to go to time, since TIEs are more defensive than offensive. I did my usual setup and opening move (it might just be better to try and watch one of the videos to see it rather than for me to try and explain it.) There wasn't a lot of casualties in this game (it was a live-fire Imperial training exercise… In the final round, I had 1 of his ships gone, and he had one of mine gone, so i was just a little ahead of him on points. Last round I finally killed his Mauler Mithel, and he had a shot on vader, who had no shields and 1 Damage. He rolls 3 hits. If i don't roll 2 evades, vader's dead and I lose the match. i rolled 3 evades. That game was that close, and it was a great game against a great guy.
My second game was against Nick from Madison. He ran Wedge, 2 rookie pilots and Gold Squadron with ion cannon. In some of my prep games againsgt my wife, she played ion cannons and beat the crap out of me, hitting them every time. So I wanted to get the Ywing gone, but I had to take out Wedge first. So my first attack round I concentrated on Wedge, and was able to take him out. My second round I concentrated on the Ywing and took it out. The third round I got some shots on his rookies, i took one out, and the other was damaged, so he conceded.
My third game was recorded, against Adam from Indianapolis. He set up asteroids right in the middle of the board, so that kind of screwed my strategy a bit. So I set up in one corner of the board, and he set up in the other. He was playing the Imperial all-stars (named TIEs.) I wanted to do all of my fighting in one of the clear corners of the board, so i flew there, and he came at me through the asteroids. he took a few hits, but his squad really didn't need the cohesion that mine did. This game also went to time. I killed 2 of his ships, for a total of 33 points, so it counted as a (I forget the name of it, kill them all) win. That was an interesting game due to the asteroid setup and just where all of the fighting took place, but I ended up winning.
My fourth game was the semifinal against Ryan from Milwaukee. He played vader with 5 Obsidians, and Vader had Concussion Missiles. We set up directly across from each other, so this was going to be a quick and painful game. I did my usual setup, and he set his up 3 wide and 2 deep. The trouble with his setup is that 3 ties don't usually fit between asteroids, so he was colliding with himself trying to avoid the asteroids. The battle was painful, i think he ended up killing 2 of mine, and I killed all but 1 of his, so he conceded as well. That game was plagued by his bad rolling. His missiles failed to even get a hit, and many times he rolled 3 blanks on defense. It was getting late by that time, so we were both happy to just go straight for each other and duke it out. For getting to the semifinals, we each got Millenium Falcon and acrylic focus tokens.
In the final game, I played Nick again. The four finalists were 3 undefeateds and Nick, since I was his only loss. That game was recorded as well. i did my usual setup. First attacking round I lost Howlrunner (good job, Nick) and I killed Wedge. So both of our squads were completely different after that round. I focused on the Ywing again and knocked it out. My AP's spun and killed one of his rookies, and I think his other was damaged, so he conceded again. I did mistakenly roll 3 dice once instead of 2, so I was happy to take a total miss, but he allowed me to reroll, and I hit. Luckily i completely missed on a shot shortly afterwards. Karma. Nick was a great guy, and I'm glad he got to the final round. He deserved a trophy and more. I look forward to trying to set up a time and location when our gaming groups can get together for a day of fun.
Thank you to FFG and all of the judges for designing a great game. Look forward to defending my crown next year. And honestly, I look forward to the game growing and seeing what squads people bring next year. See you then!