Sean, tell them that they can skip commenting on my game vs Matt Holland! I can pretty much sum it up: "Matt rolls lots of hits; Rob rolls lots of blanks." To anyone who spends time watching our game, I apologize that you'll never get those 20 minutes back. Now that I'm done bragging about myself, I'd like to thank Sean for running an amazing tournament. Props also go to his son (who's name I should know but escapes me at the moment) who helped run things and ran the video camera at the "premier" table, and to Norm, the owner of The Game Shoppe, for making us feel so welcome and giving us all of his gaming space. We've had smaller tournaments there where I've felt much more crowded than I did on Saturday. Even with the huge number of players there, I never felt cramped or trapped once all day. BTW, I'm Rob Davis, of the 44th place finishing 3x BH squadron. Not the final ranking I would have preferred, but I had to make an early exit after the 4th round so I only finished 2-2. I guess I owe Matt and Sean Esser apologies for hurting their SoS, but I couldn't pass up a once in a lifetime opportunity to see Itzhak Perlman and top off the wife-happiness meter. Round 1: Scott Fish 2x Dagger, 2x Blue, all w/FCS This was Scott's first tournament, and I could tell that he was nervous. He started out well, but in the middle rounds there were a few turns where if he had been more aggressive he might have pulled out the win. I gave him a huge boost on turn 4 when I misjudged my moves w/two of my BH's. I tried to pull two K-turns in an X formation and misjudged the angle. The 2nd ship bumped the first, which left it facing outside in a corner. If I'd been playing someone w/more experience I could have left the two ships there to keep bumping each other and shoot (they both had plenty of targets to choose from) but instead I let the one fly off of the map. I'd still done enough damage before hand that the odds were in my favor and I ended up winning 100-33. I talked to Scott afterwards about being more aggressive w/those K-turns and I know that he won his next 2 games, so I hoped that helped him out a little bit. I also pushed him to join our league on Tuesdays and hope to see him this week. Round Two: Matt Holland 2x Dagger w/Adv Sensors, 2x Red Xs As I've already mentioned, Matt and I got put up at the table of shame to record my ineptness for all to see! But honestly, I really didn't play so badly as there just wasn't any way around my die rolling. We started at opposite corners of the map and I felt that my approach was OK until we rolled dice. He had 2 B's and one X with shots at one BH. 9 attack dice and he rolls 9 hits/eyeballs, while I roll zero evades. I manage to remove 1 whole shield with my return fire, so after the first round of shooting I'm essentially already down 1 ship b/c I know that he's going to finish off that BH before it can even shoot next round. At this point I felt like I should have just conceded the game, which I know effected my mindset the rest of the match. I did end up making a game out of it, taking down one B and one X, but I can think of one move where I really screwed myself, and then another time where I took an Evade Action, but then never spent the stupid token. In the end it ended up with his 2 remaining ships chasing my BH across the table and simply wearing it down. It was a great game by Matt. I honestly can't remember if I ended up killing his second X-Wing or not, so I can't post a score, but he got a full victory either way. Round 3: Sean Esser 2x Blue, 2x Rookie, Gold Squadron Y Sean was running Jim Blakely's squadron for Worlds, but even tho Jim and I play in league together, I'd never faced this one before. I thought I had a sound strategy going in though: ignore the Y's and burn down an X or B first, to reduce his firepower. Von Moltke had something to say about that though.... I was still mentally dazed from my previous performance and hosed myself on the first round of shooting. I bumped both of my rear two ships into the front one, which left me with 1 decent shot on his B, one range 3 shot at the B, and a 3rd ship that could only shoot at a Y, which was exactly what I didn't want to do. The actual shooting didn't go horribly on my end, considering the amount of dice he got to roll. I wasn't going to let that prevent me from losing though, so on the next turn I decided to park one of my ships on an asteroid. On the next turn my parked ship had two choices: turn right or K-turn past his block. I expected him to do all 1 Straights but was worried that he might turn one ship towards my guy on the asteroid and block me from turning right, so I picked the K-Turn. Sean made the perfect move though and totally caught me off guard by moving everyone 1 Straight except for his B-Wing, which he moved last and banked into the back of his X-Wing. I was crossing his formation at an angle, and that left the B-Wing exactly where I wanted to go, which left me parked on the rock for another turn. My other guys eventually finished off his B-Wing and I got my guy off the asteroid the next turn, but by then he'd killed one BH and stripped all of the shields off of another and most of the shields off the one on the rock. It only lasted 2 more turns, with him burning down a BH each round. Sean was an extremely gracious winner. I know that he felt bad for me (I didn't roll a single evade the whole game) and he won with class. I lost: 22-99. Intermission - between rounds I was talking w/Dustin Poskochil and he was saying that the reason he quit flying 3xBH was b/c you couldn't keep them tight enough for all 3 to get good shots at the same target. One would have a good shot, the second would have a range 3 shot, and the third would have to shoot at some other target or have no shot. So going into my next game I decided to quit worrying about formation and split them up. Right after that conversation, I walked over to the spotlight table where Aaron Bonar was running Dancing Falcons against Jonathan Reinig (IIRC). After they finished they were talking about which YT to take out first: Lando or Chewie and I said that I go after Lando first, hoping to get lucky w/a Crit and either take him out fast w/Direct Hits or get a Damaged Cockpit or Injured Pilot and screw up their synergy. Jonathan said that he preferred to take out Chewie first, while you can focus all of your firepower on him, then Lando's ability becomes useless anyways. I took that to heart. Round 4: Nickie Bonar Dancing Falcons This was the squad that frightened me the most. I won 4th place at the 4-Plus Store Championship earlier this year, and Dancing Falcons gave me my only 2 losses that day (both times piloted by Evan Claassen). I know Nickie from the shop, but I'd never played her before though, so I wasn't sure what to expect of her. I know that the falcons could turn inside of me and don't have to worry about facing, so my plan was to spread out and try to keep 2 BHs pointing towards her most logical move, while the 3rd maneuvered to be in a good spot in case they turned the opposite direction. I placed 1 BH on my far left edge, and the other two just inside of the left-most asteroid, so that those two would end up flying a column and raced the solo guy down the edge as fast as possible. He was going to cross the board as quickly as possible and then K-turn so that he could hit the Falcons head-on while my other two slow-rolled across the map. It worked almost as I expected too. Nickie started slow, then banked in fast with Chewie in the lead. Both of her ships were parallel at my rear BH's 3 o'clock, but she only managed to get 1 hit. That BH didn't have any shots, but the one in front of it got a hit or two in on Chewie. The next turn she surprised me by turning away from my ships instead of following them, so we didn't get any shots in. Then on the turn after that she made a mistake by turning away again, towards my right, instead of going to my and coming back at my ships head on. This put Chewie behind Lando, so when he moved first he bumped into Lando and lost his action, then after Lando moved they were too far apart to give Chewie an action. On the other hand I actually performed my plan to perfection and when she tried to race up the right edge of the map, I had my BH's spaced out so that she had to pass in front of them all. I burned down Chewie in 2 turns and got a couple hits in on Lando too, before he managed to get some distance between us after taking out one of my ships. I got lucky w/a range 3 crit tho and "Blinded" Lando, and could finish him off before he could shoot again. I won, 100-33. At that point, I had to bow out. I guess it was fitting b/c that left me at .500 which is par for me at tournaments. This'll also be the last time I run 3 BHs for quite a while. I shouldn't be too upset with them though, considering this was only the 3rd time I've ever run them.