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Not a good day to be a rebel (100pts)

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#1 Grimwalker



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Posted 03 February 2013 - 05:11 AM

Academy Pilot x3, Obsidian Squadron x1, Howlrunner (Swarm Tactics), Darth Vader (Swarm Tactics) -- yeah, I'm a copycat burla

Rookie Pilot x2, Wedge Antilles, Gold Squadron Pilot (Ion Cannon) -- can't remember whatever other addons the Rebels had.

North/South/East/West from my perspective sitting at the South end.

Set up my Skill 1s and Howlrunner in an open square formation straight up a nice "bowling alley" between the asteroids. DV and Obsidian are together with an in-line formation to the east, set up where I could bank them into the midst of the asteroids and then peel off east or west depending on which way the rebels went. 

Rebels set up in a line abreast on the East side of the map. First turn, all the rebels go straight, fast enough that the Y-Wing picks up a stress token.  Wedge and a rookie bank towards the center, intending to use the asteroids as cover because the last time I tried formation maneuvers through obstacles, it was a Failure Pile In A Sadness Bowl. The other Rookie and Y-wing head down the East edge, trying to flank Vader and his wingman. That formation breaks up when the Y-wing can't keep up with the faster X-Wing due to the stress token. On turn 3 or so he takes a 2-Turn to the west to get around an inconvenient rock, while other Rookie's only option was to K-turn, and try to come back. He gets a Hail Mary shot on Vader and takes off a shield.

Meanwhile, seeing that Wedge's element has committed toward the center of the board, I order the Howlrunner squadron into an eastward 2-turn, filling up the space between the asteroids where the X-wings are about to come through.  Only three complete it; Howlrunner's higher pilot skill means the Southeast position in the Square is vacant for the moment.  The Rookie pilot slams into Howlrunner's slot, colliding with the southwest Academy pilot.

Howlrunner's 2-turn carries her right into the back of the same ship to avoid overlapping anything. She's out of position with no action, but still has firing angle and the correct range to her squadmates, so that doesn't bother me just at the moment. Miscalculating the distance, Wedge runs into the back of the rookie and loses his action as well.  Vader and Obsidian have been practicing leisurely banking through obstacles, and have come around facing northwest, with a flanking positions on the west-pointing X-wings.  

Vader and Obsidian use swarm tactics to fire together on Wedge, taking down his shields and doing 1 hull damage. Wedge fires on Howlrunner and gets a Range 1 crit, which is a Minor Explosion for an extra damage. Howlrunner's swarm tactics kicks in and Wedge takes 2 damage from a Direct Hit!  Howlrunner herself takes off a shield from the lone remaining Rookie before the Rookie finishes her off. 

The damaged rookie zooms away and K-turns, but just *barely* kisses an asteroid on the west side of the map, losing its action and its 2nd shield. Academy squadron peels off to the north on a 3-bank, as they're in the asteroids now and Vader is in their way to keep them from going after the Y-wing and its escort.  Vader and Obsidian bank in due west, pursuing Wedge's wingman. Vader Target Locks and Focuses, they fire together, and another 2-damage crit dooms the rebel recruit.

The rebel player doesn't like his chances with 5 to 2 odds, and concedes.


Lessons learned:

1: When placing TIE formations, set them up with about the width of a range ruler between them plus a couple of millimeters. This way they can execute any turn or bank in unison. As they rotate through turns, the extra elbow room ensures that they don't clip each other.  Wedge and his Padawan were in base contact or nearly so; when they dove toward the middle of the board, both on a 3 bank, Wedge could not have completed his move even if the Rookie hadn't been stopped prematurely. 

2: The rebel player got *seriously* unlucky, drawing two separate 'Direct Hit!' cards. On the other hand, I did everything I could to enable that to happen; on the critical turn, Wedge could have been targeted with 12 dice worth of attacks. More focused fire turns into better odds that you'll pull a lucky card.

3: I don't know what he was intending to do with the Y-wing and the other Rookie. They were never brought into battle to any good effect, making this a 6 on 2 battle from the beginning. Seeing 3 X-wings all together on setup made me very nervous; 3 attack dice against a TIE's 3 defense dice are not at all good odds. Use everything you have to play for board advantage, don't hold back the reserves.

4: Moving fast and getting your ships in first, in the formation you want, is highly effective. Causing your opponents to come up short, collide into one another, both denies them firing opportunities due to base contact, and those critical Focus and Target Lock actions which are needed as force multipliers.

5: Place Asteroids to your advantage. I knew how much space my four square of TIEs would take up, so I placed the rocks around my intended route, knowing that my opponent likes to tangle me up in the center of the board. He went for it, but I set myself up to get there first.

6: Y-wings can't shed stress very easily.  Note to self, try and make them push the envelope. 

#2 The_Brown_Bomber



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Posted 03 February 2013 - 07:53 PM

seems like getting the early stress token on the Y-Wing was a mistake. Y-Wings dont need to keep pace with the ships it is supporting at its ion cannon is more effective at range2-3 anyway. i personally think vader is overcosted for tournament play as he is such a big target and if he goes down its very hard to get enough rebel ships to total what he was worth. Wedge plus any Y-Wing are a good start for any rebel team but it tales practice to get them working together effectively. i wouldnt be that surprized to see a pair of Y-Wings make it into rebel teams in the future actually.

"There will be a substantial reward for anyone who finds the Millenium Falcon. You are free to use whatever means necessary, but I want them alive. No disintegration!".

Lord Vader

#3 Grimwalker



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Posted 04 February 2013 - 12:39 AM

The "Big Target" factor I expect to be a problem as well if I ever run Slave 1.  I'm definitely getting it and will play it for fun, but man will it ever pull aggro.

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