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Derpzilla88

Second Regional, Better than the First

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After going back and forth on whether or not I wanted to participate in the Milwaukee Regional, I finally settled on a list and decided that it was worth it to just go and play X-Wing for the day regardless of the results. And to see some cool competitive squadrons while I was at it. I ran Scum Aces with Manaroo support because hard-hitting aces is what I'm used to playing, Manaroo's ability is amazing, and I had success with this list when practicing with it a few weeks before Regionals.

 

Also, I can't remember every upgrade people had on their ships, so I'll just put "Stuff" if I know they had more things on their ship but don't remember exactly what. And if my opponents lists don't add up to a normal amount of points, it's probably because I forgot if they had any other upgrades other than what I listed.

 

My list:

Fenn Rau

 - Fearlessness

 - Autothrusters

 - Concord Dawn Protector

 

Talonbane Cobra

 - Attani Mindlink

 - Cloaking Device

 - Vectored Thrusters

 

Manaroo

 - Attani Mindlink

 - Unhinged Astromech

 - K4 Security Droid

 - Feedback Array

Common Question: "Why didn't you put Attani Mindlink on Fenn Rau too?" - Two reasons. One, I only own one copy of the Punishing One expansion and it only comes with two copies of Attani Mindlink. Two, I like Fearlessness and it helps give Fenn that extra punch if/when he gets caught at range 1 in arc.

 

Round 1

Soontir Fel

 - Push the Limit

 - Autothrusters

 - Royal Guard TIE

 - Targeting Computer

 

Carnor Jax

 - Push the Limit

 - Autothrusters

 - Stuff (?)

 

Countess Ryad

 - Juke

 - Twin Ion Engine Mk.II

 - TIE/x7

 

I knew this was going to be a tough fight simply because the person I played against was a good and practiced player, and the pilots were among the best the Empire has to offer. I immediately went after Ryad because I knew she'd be one of the biggest pains towards the endgame if she didn't die quickly. Soontir and Carnor I could Feedback Array to whittle them down, making them easier to kill. Thankfully, I managed to get the Countess at range 1 in arc of both Fenn and Cobra. Two unlucky defense rolls from Ryad and she went down in a glorious red-colored ball of fire. As the game went on, I managed to get two damage on Carnor Jax and a damage on Soontir as well.

But victory was not meant to be. I made the mistake of taking initiative that game, so my opponent used that advantage to have Soontir run circles around my firing arcs. And he (wisely) constantly kept Soontir and Carnor out of range 1 of Manaroo so I couldn't finish off or add any damage with Feedback Array. Eventually he whittled me down until all my ships blew up.

 

Round loss.

 

Round 2

Han Solo

 - Finn

 - Kanan

 - Other Stuff

 - Millennium Falcon (new)

 

Lothal Rebel

 - Fire Control System

 - Autoblaster Turret

 - Other Stuff

 

As soon as I saw my opponent's list, I decided I would go straight for the Lothal Rebel. Even though they weren't running Accuracy Corrector for the auto-hits, I didn't want to deal with Autoblaster Turret for long with my poor unshielded Fenn Rau out there. I charged headlong at the VCX-100 and nabbed strong range 1 hits from both Fenn and Cobra. Fenn was hit by some returning Autoblaster fire, but hung in there for the team. Han came up from the opposite side of where the fighting was coming from, but accidentally ended his movement on a debris field, thus limiting the effectiveness of his attacks. And on the next chance he had to move, Cobra blocked him so that he remained on the debris field. Fenn had a wonderful range 1 in arc shot on Han that reduced his shields and gave him Structural Damage, reducing his agility by 1. Talonbane Cobra chased down the heavily injured Lothal Rebel who had it's own share of crits on it. It wasn't long after that both Han and the Lothal Rebel went down.

I won't deny that my victory was also quite a bit of luck. Han whiffed or rolled so few hits on both attack rolls and rerolls. It was a little unfair. But I didn't leave unscathed. Manaroo was brought down to half health, so my opponent did get points for that.

 

Round victory.

 

Round 3

Han Solo

 - Predator

 - Engine Upgrade

 - Other Stuff

 - Millennium Falcon (old)

 

Gold Squadron Pilot

 -TLT

 

Gold Squadron Pilot

 - TLT

 

While I was nervous about the TLT Y-Wings, I decided to make Han my primary target and charged for him first. If he went down, then I could focus on getting in range 1 of the Y-Wings where they're weakest and I'm strongest. I think my opponent underestimated the punch Fenn and Cobra had together,  because he charged right at the two and he ended up at range 1 of both of them on the first round of shooting. This left Han limping away, and he was finished off on the second round of shooting. Then came the charge against the Y-Wings and they weren't easy to take down. I lost Talonbane Cobra and Manaroo had took a fair amount of damage before the last Y-Wing was pew-pew'd off the board.

 

Round victory.

 

Round 4

Rey

 - Veteran Instincts

 - Finn

 - Kanan

 - Engine Upgrade

 - Millennium Falcon (new)

 

Norra Wexley

 - Push the Limit 

 - R2D2

 - Recon Specialist

 - Alliance Overhaul

 - Vectored Thrusters

 

I immediately chose Norra as my main target for this round. Rey was pretty terrifying, but I knew how difficult it was going to be to take down Norra if I didn't destroy her as soon as possible. Luck was on my side, however. Norra and Rey were coming down the center of the map, while Fenn and Cobra were coming up from my right side. Norra did a barrel roll to her right to avoid an asteroid as my aces were turning in to come at her. I guessed that she was going to do a 3-bank to the left, and tried to slow my ships down appropriately to catch her at range one. However, she did a 2-bank to the left. This turned out in my favor, as I had underestimated how far forward my ships would have ended up. Instead of bumping from a 3-bank, Norra ended up at range 1 in arc of both Fenn and Cobra. 10 hits came her way and she was only able to evade one of them, thus going down on the first round of shooting. Rey was tougher to take down and the rest of the game ended up being me trying to chase her down. But a Major Hull Breach on her made taking her down easier. I believe Talonbane Cobra survived this round, but Manaroo was brought down to half-health.

 

Round victory.

 

Round 5

Soontir Fel

 - Push the Limit

 - Autothrusters

 - Royal Guard TIE

 - Stealth Device

 

Countess Ryad

 - Juke

 -TIE/x7

 

Omnicron Group Pilot

 - Emperor Palpatine

 

The dreaded Palp Aces. I had actually never flown against Palp Aces until this very game. But I've read enough about it to have an idea of how to play against it. I prioritized Palpatine as my main first target. The Lambda didn't have the agility dice to stand up to both Fenn and Cobra focusing on it. It was just a matter of if I could weather the attacks from Soontir and Ryad. I learned from my earlier game against Soontir to not take the initiative so he couldn't arc dodge me all day, so that was working to my advantage. Palpatine came up the middle of the board with Soontir on my far left and Ryad on my far right. I sent Fenn and Cobra to meet him in the center. A few range 3 shots were shared and I managed to plink a few shields off of the shuttle. Then the big blunder of the match happened. I knew that the shuttle was going to try bumping, so I adjusted my ships to slow it up and still end at range 1. However, I underestimated how far forward a 3-straight from the shuttle would put it. Fenn Rau went 2-straight and bumped right into the shuttle. Which, in-turn, caused Cobra who was right behind him to bump into Fenn. All as Soontir was coming up for a range 1 shot at Fenn Rau. This time it was Fenn's turn to go down in a ball of flame. Cobra managed to get the last of the shields off of Palpatine, but took some hits from the Shuttle's return fire. Manaroo came in to try and help, but couldn't get any damage through. The next round, Cobra managed to bring the shuttle down to 1 hull after a K-turn, but was quickly dispatched by Soontir. The rest of the game was Manaroo desperately trying to get the final hit on Palpatine for points, but the shuttle was running away as fast as it could and kept at range 3 or out of range while Soontir and Ryad beat up poor Manaroo. The one time Manaroo had a range 2 shot on the Shuttle, Ryad managed to get the Blinded Pilot crit on her, so no shots from Dengar's waifu that round.

 

Round loss. I lost the game very quickly, but it could be seen as a blessing in disguise. I lost so fast that both I and my opponent had 40 minutes to just sit back, relax, and mentally recover before the final round of the day.

 

Round 6

Fenn Rau

 - Attani Mindlink

 - Autothrusters

 - Concord Dawn Protector

 

Old Teroch

 - Attani Mindlink

 - Autothrusters

 - Concord Dawn Protector

 

Manaroo

 - Attani Mindlink

 - Unhinged Astromech

 - K4 Security Droid

 - Feedback Array

 

This was the closest thing to a mirror match all day. And for a final round, I knew it would be hard. My opponent had the advantage by getting more action economy out of all three of his ships mindlinked. But this game would determine if I ended the day 4-2 or 3-3, and would significantly affect my standing at the tournament. I took initiative and initially sent all my ships after Manaroo who was coming right up at me from my far left side of the board. But as Enemy Fenn and Old Teroch started to turn in towards my ships from the center of the board, I made the last second decision to send my Aces after them instead. It paid off, because I was able to blow up my opponent's Fenn Rau right away. But Talonbane was killed the same round as my opponent's Fenn, leaving both of us at two ships. But I had the initiative, higher pilot skill, and higher damage output. It still wasn't an easy game, however. I continually had to choose who I wanted to try chasing after between Manaroo and Old Teroch. And I nearly lost my Manaroo in the process. Eventually, Fenn Rau got behind Old Teroch and put enough damage on him to take him out for good. The next round, my Manaroo moved up into range 1 of my opponent's (who only had 1 hull left at that point) and used Feedback Array to finish her off.

 

Round Victory.

 

Conclusion

This was an immensely better tournament for me than the first time I went to regionals. Last time I ended the day 2-4 and I hadn't done that well even in the games I won. This time I ended 4-2, putting me in 20th place out of 80-some people. Had I killed Palpatine during round five, and/or not lost Talonbane Cobra in round 6 I think I had a very good chance of making the Top 16 cut. I don't mind not making the cut though, because I felt like I did well through the day (minus the one bad game against Palp Aces). I had a lot of fun, my opponents were a lot of fun to talk with and play against, and it was nice to play against a variety of lists I don't see often in casual play. Plus, I got a set of custom acrylic movement templates from the store for placing in the top 24, so I finally have acrylic templates that I earned! Whoo!

 

My list is nowhere near perfect and I knew there were several lists I could have gone against that would have been very bad matchups for me. Still, I'm happy with it's performance and I love having ships that can hit like a truck. I ran the only Kihrax fighter in the entire tournament (as far as I'm aware), so that's my little claim to fame. Even though I don't play in the competitive scene often, I'd still like to keep improving. Maybe make the cut next time.

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