Had my first try with the Strikers in a while. A friend has just bought seperatists, so we had a quick-build game which was his first game of 2nd edition.
Planetary Sentinel x 2
Planetary Sentinel x 2
I lost 3 sentinels before finishing off his squad. The first two went down in the initial pass (concussion missiles off the precise hunter revealing a direct hit on two ships isn't fun)
Grievous is a beast to kill. 7 hull, 2 agility, defensive rerolls when outflown, and discards the first two ship criticals. I finally killed him - or so I thought -when he used Treacherous to get rid of the final hit and strain one of the strikers into the bargain.
Duchess was awesome as ever. Being able to just stall the ailerons at will and use speed 1 straights and turns is amazing. I genuinely feel she's the best striker pilot as well as the cheapest named one.
The whole networked calculation thing never really came up; -404 and the Precise Hunter both pack target lock ordnance, and he quickly found himself outflanked, so he didn't actually get to calculate that much.
Gas clouds are annoying when you're trying to kill stuff.
Today I went to my second store championship with TIE strikers. I seriously considered another squad with Captain Kagi, Zertik Strom, and Carnor Jax. But I felt so anxious every time I thought about the tournament, which was a sign that it wouldn't be a good day flying that squad. I started to lean on TIE strikers again, but I didn't want to have to borrow them again; I only owned three. Well, at game night Friday evening before the day of the tournament, I saw strikers in the store, and remembered a squad I wrote up in case I had 4 TIE strikers:
4x Imperial Trainee (Adaptive Aileron, Lightweight Frame)
Omicron Group Pilot (Darth Vader)
I really liked the sound of this squad because of its strong Rogue One theme. I also had a lot of practice with both shuttles and strikers, so I figured I'd give it a try. I bought my 4th striker and ran the squad on Friday, and I was ready to go! When I arrived, I was feeling calm, and a bit eager to see what my squad could do. (Also, a little tired because we stayed up until 12:30 AM playing HotAC, and had to leave by 8:30 AM to get to the tournament on time). I decided to be focused on the games, so only a few photos were taken. The tournament was held at Linebreakers, and they did an amazing job. 43 people showed up, making it another relatively large Store Championship.
Joey brought the scum, with Fenn Rau and Old Teroch, identically kitted out with Autothrusters, Attanni Mindlink, and Concord Dawn Protector. Manaroo flew with them, using Guidance Chips, Proton Torpedoes, Attanni Mindlink, Rigged Cargo Chute, and R4 Agromech.
I brought my strikers to the middle of the field where it looked like we were going to converge, and the first round of combat was uneventful. I brought my Doom Shuttle up - and Fenn Rau plowed right into it to avoid the Vader damage. A sweet maneuver that would prove invaluable. I should have kept my ships bunched up to prevent that, but it's been a while since I've Doom Shuttled, and it's really difficult for strikers to pull tight maneuvers with their Ailerons.
In the end, we got some killer lucky dice on Old Teroch, taking him out the round we also destroyed Manaroo, leaving 3 trainees to fight Fenn Rau. We got him down to 1 hull, and he destroyed two of my strikers. It was so intense, and time was called when I had 1 full-health striker left. Could I have defeated Fenn Rau? Perhaps, perhaps not. Either way, this was one of the most intense, exciting games in recent memory. Or maybe I just had that much fun with strikers. Joey ended up in the Top 8.
Robert brought a variation of what he practiced with against me the night before. Then, he had 5x Prototypes with Cruise Missiles and Guidance Chips. Today, he dropped a ship to add some tech:
4x Green Sq. Pilot (Cruise Missiles, Guidance Chips, Crack Shot, Snap Shot)
Ooh. Bad news. Now he had the PS advantage and Crack Shot. Once again, my shuttle did very little. I think I got to attack once, and use Vader and that was it.
And then Snap Shot happened. You see, Adaptive Ailerons is a mandatory maneuver, so it triggers Snap Shot. We took crit, after crit from those weapons. It was awful, but I wasn't completely out of the fight because once his Cruise Missiles were all used up, those two dice had a hard time getting through at range 3, whereas our 3-dice attacks were a bit more accurate. Unfortunately, I forgot one of his A-wings still had his missile, and he zoomed out to destroy my second to last fighter. Here's the end photo, where he killed my last fighter before I got to shoot.
It was a really fun match, and I felt like I needed a break after trying to figure out how to dodge his range-1 arcs and Snap Shot. At this point, however, I'm starting to regret taking the shuttle instead of five PS 3 strikers.
Sigh. I had such high hopes for this squad, and now it looks like it could be a repeat of the previous tournament...or worse. I looked at my opponent's squad, which contained Whisper - yep, it's worse.
Whisper (Advanced Cloaking Device, Fire-Control System, Agent Kallus, Veteran Instincts)
Rexler Brath (TIE/D, Flechette Cannon, Adaptability)
Based on his deployment and the obstacles, he had to split fire on the opening engagement, meaning all my ships survived, which doesn't usually happen. So I measure range with the shuttle, and it can shoot Whisper. I get 3 hits. Whisper blanks out. Completely. That's 3 damage, and Darth Vader deals the killing blow. Suddenly this game looks winnable. It wasn't just winnable; it was a landslide victory. I Vader Howlrunner the next turn, and I blocked Rexler's 4-speed Koiogran Turn so he landed on a rock. We dance around him a bit, and he's unable to break through our defenses. Here's an awful blurry image of the second-to-last round before my 100-0 victory.
Well, that last round certainly brightened my spirits, though I felt really bad for the guy. Nobody likes to see Whisper go out like that. Ryan was my next opponent. He also brought an Imperial squad.
Quickdraw (Adaptability, Fire-Control System, Lightweight Frame, Special Ops Training)
Omega Leader (Juke, Comm Relay)
Pure Sabacc (Veteran Instincts, Lightweight Frame, Adaptive Ailerons)
I realized that if I delayed the shuttle, maybe I'd be able to hit them on hull after my strikers took some shields off. So I did that. It was a good strategy, I think, but I had a new lesson to learn: when Quickdraw shoots a ship, start by shooting Quickdraw back with that same ship. I thought I could suss out which target to choose by starting with my Range 1 shot on Quickdraw, hopefully erasing her shields in a single round. She lost 1 shield, and then destroyed the striker that hadn't fired yet! Ah! Not a good start. Next round the shuttle comes up, and I ignore Quickdraw to shoot Omega Leader, who was blocked. She spent the evade, so Vader just removed her shield. It was enough, and my strikers took her out. We also took the rest of Quickdraw's shields when she did not have a target lock on the ship in her arc. The shuttle then got two consecutive rounds of Vader on Pure Sabacc (oh, how I wish I had pictures of that!). Wampa folded, and now it was back to turning our attention on Quickdraw.
I can't describe to you all the maneuvers. There are so many options, and it's so much fun! Quickdraw was difficult to pin down because I was wary of both arcs. I set up a great kill box...except the part where one of my strikers was on an asteroid. The one shot I did have was enough, ending Quickdraw, and earning me yet another win.
Three uses of Darth Vader. Suddenly I'm not feeling so sad about bringing the Doom Shuttle.
Okay. If I can win, I will tie my previous Store Championship record. Let's do this, Brent!
Fenn Rau (Attanni Mindlink, Autothrusters, Concord Dawn Protector)
N'dru Suhlak (Concussion Missiles, Guidance Chips, Scavenger Crane, Attanni Mindlink)
Bossk (Concussion Missiles, Guidance Chips, Scavenger Crane, Attanni Mindlink, Boba Fett, 4-LOM, Cikatro Vizago)
I wish I had the deployment photo, but here's the end of the first round of combat. We always start off lined up with gaps in the asteroids, but we move around to, ideally, approach as one force. There are times where I like to have a flanking group, but I didn't face a squad where that appealed to me. Flankers can get picked off if you don't manage range and synchronized engagement right.
We had taken 5 shields off of Bossk, and I think two strikers each received two damage. Lucky for us, the overzealous N'dru landed on a rock, unable to unleash his Concussion Missiles.
Next round we block Fenn, and the Doom Shuttle hands him a Direct Hit. We also destroy Bossk. I wish I had more to say about this match. It's just all tied up in the maneuvering, which you would see on video, but I can't describe it to you here. Know this: TIE strikers are squirrely, fun, and dangerous! Anyway, we got N'dru in a kill box and destroyed him, but just as with Quickdraw in the last match, our Fenn kill box didn't entirely work. And just like that previous match, it didn't matter: Fenn died anyway.
I was pleased with my performance today. The Doom Shuttle proved invaluable, and even though it made the A-wing matchup very hard, I liked having the PS 1 Imperial Trainees just as much as the Scarif Defenders. Then they posted standings and I was floored. No, I didn't make the cut, but
10th place - 671 MOV
Wow! Out of 43 people? Yeah, I was feeling really good about myself! I had the 4th highest MOV out of all the players, not that it mattered that much with only 3 wins. Still, I was impressed with how great these TIE strikers can do!
Do I think generic TIE strikers are competitive? Absolutely. Are they the top-tier most reliable/easy to use? Not a chance. You've gotta put practice in. I do think that having five ships really helps to mitigate poor dice rolls which are bound to happen to all players. If I ever win my first match, so I'm at the top half of the field, I'll feel better about extrapolating the results of my performance in regards to the value of generic strikers across the meta. Right now, I think I just don't do well enough to say they are top tier. That said, every game was close! (Except for Whisper's blank out. Sorry, Zeke). I had a chance even against Attanni squads because of the sheer number of attacks. I honestly can't see myself flying anything but TIE strikers at tournaments for quite some time.
Finally, a picture of me sporting my 2014 Winter kit Darth Vader medal on my Darth Vader shirt, next to TK-15054.
P.S. And some swag
The coin in the pictures is the same one, and it's really cool. It has a relief of Tarkin on one side, and the Imperial cog on the other. Linebreakers will start using these at all their Star Wars events as tounament prizes, and they are each worth $5. Very cool idea to have Imperial credits!
The TIE fighter pilot was for scoring well in swiss, the trading cards are for using a squad builder with a bar code to enter my squad, and the alt art pilot cards and Engine Upgrade were participation prizes - except for the Omicron Group Pilot, which GMI Games produced for one of their tournaments, and I used it in my squad today.
My own personal versions of Imperial/Rebel/Scum here are actual posted elsewhere in this forum, but I've forgotten where, and I don't think I've ever posted the ones I've done as commissions for others here. Having just finished my Resistance covers, figured I'd go ahead and post them all here.
For myself, I try to keep a decent amount of the dials unpainted to show the original plastic color (Resistance was a hard one to do this for, I really don't like that orange). For the commissions, I do them as requested, though the black/red Rebel and the black/blue Imperial I was initially told to just come up with something and then see how the commissioner liked it -- the Rebel was in fact originally the standard plastic with white/black in the outer ring much like my own FO dials, but we both agreed it didn't look great). The other rebel commissions were 1) to match the 1.0 cardboard dial cover and then 5 slightly modified from that to match the commissioner's X-wings (4 of which had their stripes repainted).
My first 3-0 tournament result.
Shredding pre-Genius nerf Nym Miranda with Rainbow TIE/D Deltas is up there.
Running from Quickdraw for 15 minutes on Poe, before bothering to check the points... my 43 to his 42, so it just barely worked out, but it could have gone very wrong.
Flew a great losing game in my last SC match. Lots of lead changes, which feels rare in X-Wing. Feels like an early lead is usually held throughout. Triple Tactician Wookiees (C-3PO Lowhhrick + 2 Lib) vs Gunner/Krennic Vermiel, PTL/ASLAM/Harpoon Rho, and Rebel Captive/ISB Scarif Reaper. Lot of lead changes. One Lib got Harpooned round one, and the other flew over a rock, so no reinforce. However, next round was better for me. Vermiel bumped, and I was able to pour in some damage, without taking too many hits in return. 3rd round of actual combat, Vermiel has no shot and bites it. Both of my Liberators are kinda hurting, though. Slow arcing turnarounds, and I do some reasonable damage to the SBP (not quite enough, though), but the Rho is able to pick off my PS 3s one at a time. With SLAM and Ailerons, my opponent perhaps could just run from me, but I'm prepared to move in on him with Lowhhrick. He's got wide arcs, and I think it'll be hard to flee. But he turns back in on me. Range 2 on the Rho, Range 3 on the SBP, but I fire and take out the SBP. Rho vs Lowhhrick. Then I guess wrong. He SLAMs one way when I had the other direction dialed in. My best chance to get arc lost, consistent 2 evades a turn won't really cut it against Harpoons every round. However, my opponent is a great local guy, won his first SC, so grats to him.
When this is the active ship during the activation phase, Spend a force token and gain two stress to force a ship R1-3 to perform a boost or barrel roll. The target ship may bump or overlap obstacles.
Force pilots into arc, or to lose arc on you, into their allies or onto obstacles.
But costs an action due to double stressing.
Pilot skill/innitiative abuse
Flying the one decent pilot for a Chassis cause their ability is bazonkers
Capitalizing on OP releases before nerf
Also on a comical aside, in their own articles words they think that its rock paper scissors, but with a 4th thing that doesnt mesh well. Jousters<arc dodgers<turrets<jousters, and then bombs do other stuff!
Such balance. much comprehend. wow!
Here are the points! A link to the image has also been added to the main topic post. That link will be where we update (not this post).
We wanted to get this out there before the weekend, just in case anyone is able to playtest and/or provide feedback. Be aware, this is still in an extremely trial stage, as some of these cards abilities are being worked out and not every combination has been tested or tried. Again, any feedback, opinions, or assistance in developing this further would be greatly appreciated.
Hoping to have more on the development side of things after the weekend, as there appears to be an opening at which we can play additional games amongst all of our schedules.
I would like to share with you some pictures of the last huge ship that I've built. I know that a lot of people don´'t like the Lancer-class frigate, because of its general look, very different of the Imperial triangle shapes we're accostumed to. But it's a design of old, with a long reputation coming from the first Timothy Zhan's Thrawn novels, and for me that's all I need. That, and the intended use of this huge ship for an anti-starfighter purpose.
So we have X-wing miniatures, a game of starfighters, and we have huge ships for epic play. Why not this?
I know, I know... It's tooooo big! Well, that's true, in a way. It would be the same lenght as a Nebulon-B frigate. But if some of us are willing to take the Nebulon in the fray (for Imperials or for Rebels), we could take a Lancer too. And mainly when it's designed to strike the enemy starfighters.
It's a scratch built model and I'm sure that the really good specialists could make it far better than I have been able to (I haven't got with me the Kuat, Bilbringi, Fondor or Yaga Minor shipyards, for sure...). But I think it doesn't look very bad. What do you think?
Welp, it worked for the Starwing, so I'd love to see if there's some love for the noble Blastboat. Personally, this was always a favorite ship of mine -- a sturdy, hard-hitting assault craft with a good variety of weapons and a roomy cabin that actually makes sense for a picket ship.
It's a badass little ship, and in lore it was supposed to be occasionally classified as a small capital ship due to the output of its reactor. Game mechanic-wise, perhaps this could mean it gets energy tokens, like an epic ship. Anyways, who else is clamoring for this?