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SableGryphon

Feast of Crows – 2015 Dallas Regionals Battle Report

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Awesome list and awesome results. Is there any small change you could make to make this list competitive against Dash? I'm wondering what the evolution of this sort of build would be. The smallest change I can think of would be replacing a Feedback Array with an Ion Pulse Missile to try and corral Dash a little bit. You'd have to drop Greedo, or downgrade the Ion Cannon Turret to do it, though.

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Awesome writeup, and good feedback on one of your opponents' list choices, which I've passed on to him as we are part of the same NW Arkansas squad.

 

I would have enjoyed pitting my 42nd place Scum swarm (with only 2 Feedback Arrays) against yours.

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Awesome list and awesome results. Is there any small change you could make to make this list competitive against Dash? I'm wondering what the evolution of this sort of build would be. The smallest change I can think of would be replacing a Feedback Array with an Ion Pulse Missile to try and corral Dash a little bit. You'd have to drop Greedo, or downgrade the Ion Cannon Turret to do it, though.

Not that I can see. There isn't a lot of wiggle room in the list and nothing you can get for those points counters Dash. One Ion Pulse missile isn't going to cut it and replacing all Black Sun Soldiers with Feedback for Banana Pirates with Ion Pulse Missiles is much weaker. The Z isn't fast enough and can't reposition.

 

 

Awesome writeup, and good feedback on one of your opponents' list choices, which I've passed on to him as we are part of the same NW Arkansas squad.

 

I would have enjoyed pitting my 42nd place Scum swarm (with only 2 Feedback Arrays) against yours.

If you are ever in the area again, certainly. :)

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Awesome list and awesome results. Is there any small change you could make to make this list competitive against Dash? I'm wondering what the evolution of this sort of build would be. The smallest change I can think of would be replacing a Feedback Array with an Ion Pulse Missile to try and corral Dash a little bit. You'd have to drop Greedo, or downgrade the Ion Cannon Turret to do it, though.

Not that I can see. There isn't a lot of wiggle room in the list and nothing you can get for those points counters Dash. One Ion Pulse missile isn't going to cut it and replacing all Black Sun Soldiers with Feedback for Banana Pirates with Ion Pulse Missiles is much weaker. The Z isn't fast enough and can't reposition

 

I agree with this.  I've not found a configuration that works- the bug zappers really give you a positioning advantage and make Soontir play much more cautiously whereas the ion pulse missiles are more fallible, but Dash can go everywhere and puts out enough hurt at R3 to wreck your Zs.

 

I'm thinking about a variation when wave 7 drops that uses a YV with HLC and 2 tacticians with 4 black sun bugzappers.  I think that's the list that gives you a chance against Dash in this general archetype, though you lose the Mux capability.

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Wish I could have made it up there.  Had to take a backseat to raising a puppy.  She's awesome and has sapped too much of my time, but it is worth it.  I really wanted to make it up there but just couldn't justify the trip/puppy logistics during.

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I ran this list shortly after you posted the original article, but I dropped one Z and Greedo in exchange for 4 concussion middles on the Z's. You loose one ship, but it provides some mitigation for Dash. I never would have been able to do ad well as you though.

Edited by balindamood

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This was a great event. It was my 1st regional and with 115 players very intimidating. I flew a variant of panic attack and went 1-5. I was feeling disappointed but the other players assured me I did just fine  playing for only 2 months. The most success I had was against Soontir Fel, double stressed and shut down PTL. I just want to say how supportive, helpful the X-wing community is. 

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Great write-up and congratluations on both a win and a second place this Regional season.

I've dabbled in lists with four zappers supported by various other ships but never really gotten any consistency out of them. Perhaps it's time to go back and try some more.

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Awesome list and awesome results. Is there any small change you could make to make this list competitive against Dash? I'm wondering what the evolution of this sort of build would be. The smallest change I can think of would be replacing a Feedback Array with an Ion Pulse Missile to try and corral Dash a little bit. You'd have to drop Greedo, or downgrade the Ion Cannon Turret to do it, though.

Not that I can see. There isn't a lot of wiggle room in the list and nothing you can get for those points counters Dash. One Ion Pulse missile isn't going to cut it and replacing all Black Sun Soldiers with Feedback for Banana Pirates with Ion Pulse Missiles is much weaker. The Z isn't fast enough and can't reposition.

What about replacing Torkil Mux with a Wave 7 shenanigan?

Yes, your fleet totally abuses his power, so your general match-up would lessen, but he is a full quarter of your points on his own...

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Awesome list and awesome results. Is there any small change you could make to make this list competitive against Dash? I'm wondering what the evolution of this sort of build would be. The smallest change I can think of would be replacing a Feedback Array with an Ion Pulse Missile to try and corral Dash a little bit. You'd have to drop Greedo, or downgrade the Ion Cannon Turret to do it, though.

Not that I can see. There isn't a lot of wiggle room in the list and nothing you can get for those points counters Dash. One Ion Pulse missile isn't going to cut it and replacing all Black Sun Soldiers with Feedback for Banana Pirates with Ion Pulse Missiles is much weaker. The Z isn't fast enough and can't reposition.

What about replacing Torkil Mux with a Wave 7 shenanigan?

Yes, your fleet totally abuses his power, so your general match-up would lessen, but he is a full quarter of your points on his own...

 

I think if you're going to replace Mux, you probably want to do it with a stress inflictor.  The cheapest one in scum is a slaver with flechette+tactician, and that puts you down to 4 zappers.  Putting stress on Dash does limit his moves and gives you more of a game.  With 4 zappers you can run a slaver with flechette, tactician, gunner, and bossk which is somewhat formidable.  You can also play a mandalorian merc with tactician, flechette, and a point and still have 4 zappers.

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I am really intrigued by this list. I am going to give it a try soon. Can anyone give me some advice on how to fly this list? I've gleaned as much advice as I could from the excellent write-up above. But I'm looking for some additional turn 0 advice. I'm also looking for some general formation advice. Should I stick to a tight formation, or spread out to more of a cloud approach?

Edited by Bowser

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The Regionals in Dallas for 2015 was held in my home store, so I was excited to attend. Madness Games and Comics is an incredible store with a great staff. This year, we had 115 players in the tournament, the largest of all Regionals to date, making the day daunting. 7 rounds, 70 minutes each, cut to Top 8. Any prize support would be hard fought. The store was easily capable of handling the number of players, so every table had plenty of space, and there were table left over for other games. Madness could easily host 200+ X-Wing players.

 

Because I had already won the Austin Regionals, I did not really feel any pressure to do well. This lead to a conundrum of which list to bring. Nationals was less than two weeks away, so I could take a competitive list to hone my skills, or I could take a fun, quirky list and see what I could do with it. After much back and forth, I finally decided to take the latter. I finally showed up with this:

 

Muder%20of%20Crows.jpg Murder of Crows

Murder of Crows is a list I've played a bit with in league, but never taken to a tournament. I spoke about it as a theoretical here: http://teamcovenant.com/sablegryphon/2015/05/30/brigands-bandits-and-bastards-a-closer-look-at-the-scum-hwks/

 

This is a mean list. 5 Z-95s give me the punch of a swarm, with all the added abilities to block and deny actions. At PS3, they move before most major threats but shoot before low PS filler. This can be an ideal time to move for a large number of ships. At 13 points, a lot of them can fit into a list to create a dire threat for many opponents. Further, they can take a small number of upgrades and remain economical. In this case, Feedback Array

 

'During the Combat phase, instead of performing any attacks, you may receive 1 ion token and suffer 1 damage to choose 1 enemy ship at Range 1. That ship suffers 1 damage.'

 

Each of these Black Sun Soldiers carries the Feedback Array. This 2 point illicit upgrade carries a potent effect. Instead of attacking, they may take an ion token and a damage to do one damage to an enemy ship at Range 1. This victim does not have to be a valid target. It can be out of arc. The two ships can be in contact. Feedback Array can even be used while on a rock or otherwise prevented from shooting. It is not an attack, so no abilities that trigger off an attack will activate. Similarly, the target is not considered hit. With this upgrade, the Black Sun Soldier clocks in at 15 points. 5 of them leaves 25 points left in a list. Rounding out this threatening swarm is Torkil Mux.

 

At PS3, this 19 point HWK has an incredible ability: 'At the end of the Activation phase, choose 1 enemy ship at Range 1-2. Until the end of the Combat phase, treat that ship's pilot skill value as "0".' This ability alone is worth its weight in points. A far cry from his counterpart Roark's ability, this ensures that ones entire list can attack before the victim of Mux-ing gets to fire. This can often lead to the death of the target before it ever has a chance to shoot, which is an incredible boon.

 

Added to Torkil's ability is Ion Cannon Turret, allowing him to shoot in any direction with 3 dice out to Range 2, with the caveat that any damage that gets through is canceled, leaving only 1 damage and an ion token. A venerable and well respected turret, this adds some serious control abilities to my list. But that leaves Torkil with 24 points and thus one point remaining. This point could be kept for initiative, but PS3 is an uncommon PS to encounter, especially in a way initiative would be crucial. But what upgrades could be found for 1 point?

 

Greedo.

 

Greedo is an extremely potent and sometimes risky card. I have explored the card in great depth here: http://teamcovenant.com/sablegryphon/2014/12/03/greedo-explored/

Greedo adds a bit of risk to this list, but gives Torkil the serious advantage of being able to crit with and ion weapon. He may only do one damage, but if it doesn't hit shields, it is faceup, which can seriously ruin the opponent's day.

 

The real strength of this list is that all 6 ships are the same Pilot Skill. They can be activated in any order for movement and can shoot in any order. This is a huge advantage. As the enemy will likely have one high value target reduced to PS0, often a major threat can be removed by massed fire long before it can remove any friendly ships. This changes the entire balance of power. Further, because they can shoot in any order as well as do damage in any direction at close range, activation order during combat is essential.

 

The ideal is that Torkil makes an enemy ship PS0. Then, Headhunters are activated until a target has lost all shields and spent all defensive tokens. At that point Torkil can fire the ICT at the helpless target. If successful, the target takes a crit. Then, further decisions can be made whether to attack the crippled and ioned target that hasn't fired yet or switch targets to a more lucrative enemy vessel. When done right, this swarm has an incredible punch.

 

It's definitely a novel list, one which few have any experience with. It has a few critical weaknesses, but it destroys many of the threats that usually spell doom to swarms. Unlike most swarms, this list loves to encounter Soontir, Whisper, Echo, Jake, or any other interceptor. However, this swarm has no answer to Dash, who will have no difficulty versus this list. This one weakness ensures that it will not be a Tier 1 list. But, as I had already won a Regional in Austin and was going to this one to have fun and fly a weird list no one had encountered, I simply wanted to see how well I could do with it.

 

Round 0:

 

Dressed in my Standard Battle Attire™, I arrived when the doors opened at Madness at 9am. I was still waffling on my list at this point. Seeing people setting up and chatting, I finally decided to run Murder of Crows. What's the worst that could happen?

 

Pairings are posted and I check for my name and can't find it. Checking with the judge, they find out that several names are missing. I'm paired up and my first opponent will be flying Chirpy and Kath Scarlet. Alright, two large ships that can't evade well. The crit output is only mildly concerning because only 1 of the 4 HP of the Z-95 suffers meaningful critical damage and Greedo does a nice job of inflicting crits on Torkil anyway. We start to setup for Round 1, with the start time being a little after the targeted time of 10am.

 

And then we are told there is a serious issue with the pairings due to a bug in Cryodex. They were unable to just add in the names of the players that were missing. Eventually they had to regenerate the pairings and we get setup to start at 11am, an hour late.

 

Round 1: Paul Trupia

 

Round%201.jpg

 

A symmetric Dual IG-88 build. Stay On Target is an interesting choice, though IG-88 has a hard enough time getting enough speed to clear a swarm to escape. The rest is standard equipment. I figure that, if I can joust with an Aggressor I can burn it down. I setup in one corner. Loose asteroid field with a big rock in the center. He sets up one IG in the far corner and one near my corner but just inside the asteroid in that corner. I expect to see him turn away. Ready for this, I leap 3 forward to clear my corner asteroid and sure enough that IG turns while the other moves slowly. I bank in as the IG banks long to go around the center asteroid. Turn 2 I have a single long range shot against IG-88D with a focus. I roll 2 hits and he rolls 4 blanks. Autothrusters halves the damage, but it clearly demoralizes Paul.

 

Guessing he is going to continue around the large asteroid, I call it and move my entire fleet south of the rock. Sure enough, IG-88B flies right into the trap. Though at Range 2-3 (and outside range of being Muxed up), he is able to do 2 damage to one of my crows but takes a bit of damage in return. Next turn he has nowhere to go but into my teeth. IG-88D joins him in the furball. Paul gets a bit unlucky with the dice and over the next three rounds I burn down IG-88B and do a number on Delta while only losing one crow.

 

I make a mistake during the last of those three turns. I start setting down dials, but look at the board again and realize that I need to change a couple dials. I pick them back up. Then Paul asks where his dial is. I look down in horror to see his dial and quickly toss it back to him. I hadn't actually seen what he selected but Paul had no way to know that. I know IG-88D had only a few options due to rock and swarm placement, so I move to chase if he goes fast or block and zap him to death with Feedback if he moves slowly.

 

IG-88D reveals a maneuver that puts him in a terrible spot with nowhere to boost and at Range 1-2 of my entire list. Paul is obviously upset because he had changed his maneuver because I picked up his dial. The maneuver he selected initially would have allowed him to boost and begin the process of escaping. I insist that he change it back to the original dial setting. It was my fault after all. We redo the move, he clears and is able to boost. I'm still able to take him down to 1 hull through shooting and am able to kill him next turn. Still, Paul, I'm sorry. I'm not used to playing with so many dials.

MoV for the round is 185. Total MoV at this point is 185 strangely enough.

 

Round 2: Harrison Stanley

 

Round%202.jpg

 

An interesting list. Soontir Fel is the largest threat in this list, with PTL and Thrusters. Jax lacking PTL is worrisome, but his ability to shut down focus and evade can be invaluable. Howlrunner has Wingman to open up Soontir Fel's dial after he uses PTL. Backstabber is clearly a flanker. I'm not sure I like this list. It's 12 hull and all of them are best flanking, but there is no anvil for these hammers to strike against. No major, sturdy threat to anchor the squad. Still, Soontir can win matches alone if flown right.

 

Asteroids were loose again, so I setup my squad in one corner. Backstabber was setup in the far corner, Carnor in the middle and Soontir and Howlrunner across from me. First two rounds I rushed forward while Soontir/Howlrunner moved cautiously and Backstabber rushed to try and catch me from behind. Second round there were some range 2 shots, with my list losing a shield off two crows and putting one damage card on Howlrunner.

 

Next round, I moved slowly forward. Howlrunner rushed behind me and Carnor moved into Range 1 of Torkil to try and blast him. Soontir tried to complete a 5K, but was blocked by my back Z-95, leaving him pointed the wrong way and with no targets. Carnor Jax became PS0 that round. Immediately, the 3 crows around Soontir zapped him, leaving only the fresh scent of pine. Torkil fired at the tokenless Carnor (because he boosted) and managed to land a hit. And Greedo flips it into a Direct Hit. One zap later and the second interceptor was off the board. A final zap put Howlrunner at 1 hull left. Next turn my entire fleet drifts forward and Torkil turns toward Backstabber, who has finally joined the party. The lady TIE becomes PS0. Backstabber attacks but does one shield to a Z-95. In return, Torkil blasts Howlrunner (who had K-Turned), removing her from the board. Backstabber, now in the middle of my flock was quickly blasted apart.

 

MoV for the round: 200. Total MoV: 385.

 

Round 3: Brian Gabbard

 

Round%203.jpg

 

I must confess that I love Ten Numb with VI and Mangler. I can't find a list I really like with him, but it's solid. Here, though, I'm not entirely sold on the extra addition of FCS and Engine. Corran has Predator, which isn't a bad EPT for him but combos very poorly with FCS. FCS is clearly here for the R7 Astromech to try and mitigate damage. I think it's a lackluster Corran build simply because Corran is over-costed and isn't worth taking without R2D2. Still, any Corran can be a threat with double-tap. Finally, a Bandit is to act as bait and a bit of damage support.

 

Asteroids were a bit tighter in the middle with some outliers. He setup his Bandit on my left, just inside the asteroid. I setup on the far left, which gave me an open lane into his backfield. Ten Numb was setup on the far corner and Corran middle right. I burned forward rapidly. His Bandit, unwilling to joust my entire list alone turned towards his companions. I continued to race forward, leaving a long range shot between Corran, Ten and the lead three Zs the second round, though no damage was exchanged. I then burned forward north of the large asteroid where the Bandit was fleeing and Ten was charging forward. Corran realized he didn't want to be caught by my list barrel rolled south of the big rock, taking him out of most of my arcs. I was unconcerned as it meant his maneuvering was going to be terrible next round.

 

Ten charged right into my trap. He became PS 0 and was blasted off the board before he could shoot again. The return damage was light. The next round saw the downfall of the Bandit. I was able to land a bit of damage on Corran, who lightly injured Torkil, but he was zapped off the board the next round.

 

MoV for the round: 200. Total MoV: 585

 

Round 4: David Light

 

Round%204.jpg

 

Onto the top Table I go. My list's greatest weakness is Dash with HLC. My list just cannot chase him down and he is able to constantly stay at range 3 or out of arc. Corran being able to regenerate is rough but if I can catch him, he can vanish quickly against my list. I knew winning this game was a long shot. Simply put, he had a hard counter to my list.

 

Asteroids and debris were scattered. I setup in the right corner. Dash across from me and Corran in the opposite corner. I slowly banked toward the rock in my corner and Dash moved forward while Corran positioned. Next round, I split my forces around the rock hoping for good position next round but, as expected, Dash turned away from me and did 2 damage for no return. Then, dice began to take their toll. He was getting roughly one shot a turn and I was losing 2 ships every three turns. Knowing I was doomed otherwise, I began taking serious risks. Conservative flying was not going to win me this game. If I could catch Corran or Dash, just once and eliminate that threat, I would have a chance. Unfortunately, every time I made a call on which direction he would take, I guessed wrong.

 

Eventually I tracked down Corran with one crow and Torkil and managed to remove his shields, but that's the same as not hitting him. Torkil was the last one left, but was incapable of doing anything against Dash.

I never expected my list to do well in the tournament and had said before hand that there was no way I should have lost one ship in three tournament rounds. A swarm simply isn't expected to have a high MoV. This loss was what I was expecting most of the day, so having my first loss in Round 4 on Table 1 was putting me closer to where I expected to be.

 

MoV for the round: 0. Total MoV: 585

 

Round 5: Mason Wellman

 

Round%205.jpg

 

Having been knocked back down to Table 9, I faced an opponent who looked distinctly uncomfortable encountering a swarm on a higher table. Two Firesprays are not particularly threatening to a swarm of my design. Asteroids closed off much of the middle left, where I setup. He setup in the opposite corner. Knowing he would have limited options if he turned into the middle of the map, I immediately turned right with my entire list. Sure enough, he moved forward three. Next round, I move moderately quickly forward while he did another forward move. Now, a rock prevents him from turning, so he has to move forward and swing around the rock in the lower right of the map. I pounce. Kath does a 3 Bank, putting her at range 2-3 of my list with no shots. Fett is too far behind for a shot. So she boosts forward hoping to weather the storm.

 

The pirate queen becomes PS0. My first Z from Range 2 does two damage. The second crow does the same. Then the next two Crows deal 3 each, removing he from the board in four shots before she could fire. My dice were on fire and his were rolling nothing but blanks and eyes Next round, I pounce on Fett, who is in a similar bind as Kath. He attempts to boost past my list along my edge of the board, but gets double ioned while I turn around. Once able, my flock immediately races after the fleeing and heavily damaged ship, blasting it apart.

 

MoV for the round: 200. Total MoV: 785

 

During Round 5, the store announced that everyone had a $10 store credit to use, so I picked up some cheap swag for free.

 

Round 6: Gerry Russell

 

Round%206.jpg

 

The infamous 8 Z-95 swarm flown by Darth Nader. I'm really worried when I see my pairing. Half of his squad has higher PS than I do and he has two additional ships. My tricks might not be enough to stop it. Further, he moves half his list before me, able to block me well. This could be very bad. He sets up his Bandits middle right of the board, but I notice he hasn't given himself enough space to bank. If I setup in the opposite corner, and bumping will happen long before we get into combat. I decide to take a chance, knowing he'll have a couple ships without actions the first round it matters. I setup in my right corner, so the second round he will almost certainly bank. He then sets up the Talas in a skirmish line in front of me. First round, I move three forward as does his Bandits. His Talas move two forward. Not shots yet. Second round, I move 1 Forward, his Bandits bank in, bumping as predicted. His Talas move moderately quickly into range 2. After shots, one of his Bandits is at 1 hull, as is my center lead crow. Dice were a little cold for the both of us, but next turn everything is going to turn real messy, really quick.

 

His Bandits move in to muck up my movements. My injured Z leaps forward to block two of his Talas, and everything else basically crashes into something. I make the most dangerous Tala PS0 and we begin shooting. What happened next was one of the most incredible dice experiences I've ever had. 8 ships versus 6, all range 1 with effectively no actions to be had. Both sides lose one HP, though I zap the injured Bandit to remove it from the board. Total. It was nothing but blanks and perfect defenses for 14 consecutive shots. There is absolutely no way that there shouldn't have been at least three dead ships that round. Instead, nothing.

 

Next round, we maneuver as best we can, but there's not much we can do. The board is too crowded. Most ships bump. So, we return to shots. Otherwise it's a bunch of wiffed rolls. He attacks Torkil with everything he can and does no damage. Incredible.

 

Next round, we are starting to pull free of the furball, but most ships are still actionless. Now my die turn around and Darth Nader's don't. I start splashing Headhunters. I take some damage, but it's spread out. For the next 40 minutes, I slowly start removing ships, often through the tactical use of Feedback Array. At the 67 minute mark (of 70) he finally kills a Black Sun Soldier, but I respond by burning down a Tala. When time as called, he had a single Bandit and a single Tala remaining.

 

This was, without a doubt, the most singular dice anomaly I have ever seen. Darth Nader did everything right, but when you don't roll a hit, or when you do they are evaded naturally, there's nothing you can do. I would not have killed half of the ships I did without Feedback Array. After 6 rounds of being fired at by multiple Range 1 Headhunters, Torkil hadn't even lost a shield.

 

MoV for the round: 160. Total MoV: 945

 

It slowly dawns on me that I have a real shot at making the cut. I just need one more win. I have high MoV. How did my list, which I took expecting not to do well, get this far?

 

Round 7: Jeremy Chumblee

 

Round%207.jpg

 

Once again, the dual of the podcasts. Kessel Run versus Scum and Villainy. Once more, much is on the line. In Store Championships, we met in battle on the Final Table, where fate decreed that one of us should stomp on the other for a while, so too did this battle determine the cut to Top 8. Would IG-88B and his two Warthog compatriots be enough to stop the Black Sun strike squadron?

 

The rocks formed an open space roughly the center of his side of the board and to my left. He setup his two Warthogs in the middle left of the board. I setup on my left. His IG-88 went middle right. First round, I zoom forward and his Warthogs meander vaguely onward. The droid moved forward and boosted, but put himself in a really bad position. Going forward would go over a rock, so the only realistic move would be to bank right, which is back towards his board edge.

 

Next round I arced in with 3 Bank maneuvers with most of my ships, excepting the HWK and the back left crow, who went 2 Bank. The Y-Wings once more moved slowly, putting them in Range 2-3. IG-88 decided to pop the handbreak and stay where he was. This gave him a long range shot that removed a shield from the lead crow. My shots at the Y-Wing at range did a total of 5 damage, then the lead Z was destroyed.

 

Next round, the Warthogs move forward again as I pounced on where IG-88B was going to likely end up. Being stressed, he was unable to act and ran into me. Becoming PS0, I was able to finish off the hurt Warthog and strip three shields off the Aggressor. I then sacrificed the Black Sun Soldier touching the droid to remove the last shield from the bounty hunter. Then Torkil blasted him with Greedo, landing an ion token and a Stunned Pilot on him.

 

Next round, I guessed where IG was going to go, though he didn't have many options, and blocked him. The Warthog also bumped. IG-88 was destroyed and I began work on the Y-Wing, including ioning it. Over the next several rounds I repositioned my remaining flock while Ion walking the Y-Wing onto a rock, then blasting it apart.

 

MoV for the round: 170. Total MOV: 1115

 

The Cut:

 

At this point I knew I had made the cut. All 6-1s would make it. The question would be seeding. When the results were posted, seed 8 was a player that went 5-1-1. I was ranked 3rd out of 115. This is with a 6 ship swarm and a full 0 MoV loss on my record. Only one other 6-1 beat my MoV and it wasn't by much. I was stunned by my performance.

 

It flashed through my mind how ofter I had heard the wisdom that swarms could not compete in the MoV game. I submit to you that this is not true and I provide proof.

 

Top 8: Logan Holt

 

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Logan immediately commented that he had really worried about facing a swarm but hadn't all day. Then I put my ships down. I was going to be up against Leebo and Chewy. My list had the edge. Swarms aren't supposed to be in the Top cuts.

 

The open area was my side, middle of the board to middle right. I setup on the left side, hoping to force him into the opposite corner, which he promptly did. First round, I turn my entire list to the right and he moves 3 Forward. Next round I move forward and he does the same maneuver. Just as in my Round 5 game, he now had a tough choice because of a rock. He can turn, but he is in a bad place if he does so. Or he can move forward around the rock. I guess he will do the latter and pounce. My gamble pays off and Chewy ends up right in front of me after banking.

 

The walking carpet becomes PS0. Leebo shoots ineffectually and I open up on the wookie, knocking him deep into hull. His return shot scuffs some shields. Next round, both do a 4 forward, catching me off guard as I moved slowly forward to tighten the noose. Still, I'm not in a bad spot. Chewie becomes PS0, but I don't have a lot of shots on him. I lose a crow to Leebo, then I shoot Chewbacca once, then ion him, leaving him with one hull left. He is PS0 and pointed towards the edge of the board. He is double ioned. I can let him fly off, but it would mean a range 1 shot on Torkil. I can risk it. A crow zaps him for his last hull.

 

Next round, I know Leebo is going to turn hard into the center of the board. I maneuver as best I can, but can't Torkil him. I manage to get into hull through shooting during this and the previous round. Following round it's over.

 

MoV this round 185. Total MoV: 1300

 

Top 4: James Elhardt

 

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Once more I face my friend James on the Top 4 table at a Regionals in Texas. Once more we must face each other for the entertainment of others, as was recorded in the prophecies. Once more there must be war.

This list combines the twin threats of Jake and Corran. Jake at PS9 can boost, barrel roll, and focus every turn. Inexpensive at 28 points, he can constantly harry and destroy ships incapable of dealing with his maneuverability. Corran, with R2D2, FCS, and PTL allows him to act almost with impunity, dealing serious damage to enemy vessels before fleeing to recover and return. The B-Wing acts as a distraction in the early game. If ignored, it can virtually shut down an enemy list but if attacked first, can allow the two flankers to get behind them.

 

Asteroids were heavier on the right side. The Blue Squadron Pilot was in the center of the map, so I setup in the far left. Corran and Jake were in the opposite corner. I read the asteroids and determined where the two were going to go. First round my fleet moved forward as Jake and Corran started to navigate the asteroids and the B-Wing turned towards me. Next round I banked past the rock to make sure of the approach of Corran/Jake. Jake moved faster and there was a bit of inconsequential shooting.

 

Now, if Jake moved forward fast and I slow rolled, there is no way he could survive being zapped. However, if he moved slow and I moved fast, he could be a Range 2 behind me. But if I turned towards Jake and Corran and Jake ferreted, I would have no shots and a B-Wing behind me. There was one answer. Sacrifices had to be made.

 

I rushed forward rapidly to pounce on the B-Wing, which had moved two forward. One crow broke off, though, and planted himself where Jake would have to go if he were going to attempt to flank. Jake rabbits, turning Hard 3 away and Corran just outside range 1 of the Z, who is blasted apart. The Blue Squadron Pilot is blasted apart. The loss of my crow was not in vain. It slowed down Corran and forced Jake to spend two turns returning to the fight, allowing my ships time to turn around. I then rapidly returned to the fray. A couple rounds of maneuvering found me catching Jake. He barrel rolled out of arc of most of my list. Only two had shots, though Jake had lost one shield already. The first one attacks, managing to strip Jake's focus token. The second one attacks and does one damage. Jake is now shieldless and my only shot is from Torkil, out of arc. I take the shot. I manage 3 hits. Jake only gets two evades. Greedo flips the card faceup. Direct Hit. Boom.

 

Corran is in a bad board position now and James knows it. There's not much else he can do and I hunt him down. Once more, the Finals are safe from the tyranny of James.

MoV for the round: 185. Total MoV: 1485

 

Finals: David Light Rematch

 

Once more I face David Light, my only loss of the day. Once more I face a hard counter of my list flown by a skilled player. Would the results be any different? Can I finally cast down the last vestiges of the rebellion? Can a 6 ship swarm win the largest Regional tournament ever?

 

No. No they could not.

 

This game was lost early on, though I would valiantly attempt to win to the last Z-95. The critical round, which clinched it, was round 4. I had my entire list at range 2-3 of Corran (minus an already dead crow). Corran had no tokens and was being shot at by 5 ships (albeit mostly without tokens themselves). And I did not damage. I had I destroyed Corran, or at least managed to Ion him, I could have destroyed him with enough forces to hunt down Dash. It was not to be. Corran was unharmed, escaped the trap, and my list was hunted down.

 

Thus ends the Headhunter Invasion. Thus ends the dream of swarms.

 

Conclusion:

 

This tournament was a lot of fun. I did far better than I had any right to expect. Dice were, outside of my two matches with David Light, anywhere from average to wholly in my favor. It was the swingiest tournament I've ever been to, with the extreme end of the bell curve being my match against Darth Nader.

 

Still, I am extremely proud of my accomplishments. I had a lot of fun taking a list to the tournament not because I was trying to bring the best list I could, but because I wanted to have fun. I took a list I knew couldn't compete in the meta and still took it to the top table, losing only to the hardest of counters. Many great players didn't make the cut.

 

The Dallas Regionals were huge but also a lot of fun. The venue is great, (Full Disclosure: It's my home store, so I'm really biased) and the people friendly. It was run well, outside of factors outside their control, such as the software.

 

I already have my ticket to Nationals and Worlds, so this shan’t be the end for me. If you see before you a giant of a man dressed in archaic garb from forgotten lands, bearing an exotic or odd list, it is likely that you have encountered me.

Great battle report, shame you autolost to overpowered crap, you got robbed.

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I am really intrigued by this list. I am going to give it a try soon. Can anyone give me some advice on how to fly this list? I've gleaned as much advice as I could from the excellent write-up above. But I'm looking for some additional turn 0 advice. I'm also looking for some general formation advice. Should I stick to a tight formation, or spread out to more of a cloud approach?

So, I tend to form in a 3x2 formation with more than enough room between them for all ships to bank. I setup in one of the two corners with Torkil in the middle rear. I place an asteroid in the center of the board if there isn't one there already, then place the other two on my side near the edges, though not all way to 2 range of either side, in order to make maneuvering difficult for ships that try to rush or shoot past me. I then decide whether I'm going to joust, slow roll, or turn away, depending on what I'm up against.

 

Don't be afraid to break the formation up. Force them to come to Torkil, not vice versa. Basically, if they want Torkil, they have to fly into the teeth of the swarm. Remember to self bump when necessary to block K-Turns and ships trying to shoot past you.

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