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LT BDP

Leia and 5 Hammerheads - Store Championship Report

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Since I have always enjoyed reading and watching others’ Battle Reports, I thought I would share my Store Championship Experiment with Leia and 5 Hammerheads. 

Background

Like a lot of folks, I am never able to get as many games of Armada in as I would like.  This is mostly due to commitments of a loving wife, kids, job, and life in general.  I am primarily a Rebel player, who has been known to have an unhealthy affection for a TRC90 Swarm.  Most of my lists always include a minimum of 2 CR90s.  With the announcement of Wave 6, I was interested in the Hammerheads but not overwhelmed by the potential of them.  I have recently tried to change my play style, and know I need to make the transition back to more large and medium based ships in my fleets.  With that said, I knew that I had to get the Hammerhead Swarm idea out of my system, to be able to move on to other fleet types.  There is no better way to do this than try it out (i.e. get wrecked) at a friendly store championship.

Leading up to the Store Championship I only had a week with Wave 6.  I toyed around with Sato and 4 Hammerhead Torpedo Corvettes (HHT) with APTs and OE’s, with Salvation or Admonition as the flagship, i.e. 5 Activations with 6 fighters, such as Han, Tyco, Shara, and some YT1300’s.  The idea was lay back and make the enemy come to me firing off APTs from long range.  I played a game at a local store, and won.  It was a fun list, but quickly learned how the HHT’s go down quickly.  I then started playing around with mixing thing up and going with Leia for some trial builds.  As many have stated Leia is fun on lesser command ships, like the HH’s. 

I really thought I would be going up against a ton of Sloan builds with tons of fighters, and thus looked at finding a way to combat tons of incoming Ties.  Enter the great combos of Ten Numb and Yavaris, Fighter Coordination Team, Flight Commander, backed by Toryn for blue rerolls.  I tweaked the list some more, and then said the heck with it, this is what I am going with.

Alea iacta est - 7/15 Empire Store Championship 
Faction: Rebel Alliance
Points: 400/400  

Commander: Leia Organa

Assault Objective: Opening Salvo
Defense Objective: Planetary Ion Cannon
Navigation Objective: Solar Corona

 Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette (36 points)
-  External Racks  ( 3  points) 
 

Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette (36 points)
-  External Racks  ( 3  points) 
 

Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette (36 points) – BLUE Hammerhead
-  Toryn Farr  ( 7  points) 
-  External Racks  ( 3  points) 
 

[ flagship ] Nebulon-B Escort Frigate (57 points)
-  Leia Organa  ( 38  points) 
-  Yavaris  ( 5  points) 
-  Flight Commander  ( 3  points) 
-  Fighter Coordination Team  ( 3  points) 
 

Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette (36 points)
-  External Racks  ( 3  points) 
 

Hammerhead Torpedo Corvette (36 points)
-  External Racks  ( 3  points) 

2 YT-1300s ( 26 points) 
1 Ten Numb ( 19 points) 
1 Jan Ors ( 19 points) 
2 B-Wing Squadrons ( 28 points) 

 

Fleet Summary/Aim

I have a very bad habit of seeing an Armada engagement develop, and a voice in my head screams “FORTUNE FAVORS THE BOLD…”  A very soft voice says, “…but many times it shuns the stupid.”  I then immediately do some gutsy maneuver/strategy that I regret later.  Thus, I thought I will hang back a bit with this fleet to allow any overreaching Raider, fighter wing, MC30, or Demolisher come in too close, and then jump them with a combined force of the bomber wing and HH’s.

I usually take a decent bid, and win the bid for my choice.  I have NEVER taken a fleet with 400 points, so to force a change in play style, and to squeeze everything in, I went with 400 pts.

I really didn’t like my objectives, but felt they were the ones that the enemy couldn’t possibly over exploit, other than a Strategic fleet.   I had played around with trying to get some VCX’s into my fleet but wasn’t willing to compromise on anything else.   I knew no one would pick Open Salvo’s (oh but wouldn’t that have been glorious), Planetary Ion Cannons could be okay, and figured everyone would pick Solar Corona.  I love Superior Positions but was concerned the Sloan fighter swarm would eat that up.

The underlying idea is that Leia can make everything better in this fleet.   I utilized every command during the tournament and always had a grin on my face when I said, “and with Leia’s ability I get add…”

Lastly and most importantly, I wanted to have fun and enjoy myself.  I told myself ahead of time, not to worry about results and that the list would probably fall on its face, but at least there were some elements in the fleet that cultivate awesome Armada moments.  5 HH with External Racks (ER) and Leia + CF = 5 separate shots of 1R, 1B, and 4BL dice, with two potential rerolls, if Toryn’s around.  Also 3 Yavaris squadron double taps.  Yes, I was able to double tap Ten Numb and his 2 B Wing brothers multiple times. 

Disclaimer: I was horrible about taking pictures.  I got wrapped up in the fun, and started taking “action shots” for some dumb reason.

Edited by LT BDP

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Game 1

I played my first match against a nice guy who was running Akbar, IX7 Gunnery Teams AFMKIIB, Foresight MC30 Gunnery Teams TRC, 1 GC75’s with Boosted Comms & BCC, and 1 GC75 with Boosted Comms.   He had 3 X Wings, Wedge, Luke, Jan, and a B Wing.  He won the bid, choose to go first, and picked Planetary Ion Cannons.  I probably could have set them up better, but below is a picture at the start of turn 1.

 

Turn 1

Below was my basic pre-planned setup for this fleet.  Toryn is on the blue Hammerhead, to Yavaris’ starboard side.  Yavaris and her would always been in the middle.  Depending on the opponent’s setup, I would then move HH from one side or the other, depending on who I thought I could take out quicker.   Below is a picture from the setup.

5OUxwmM.jpg

 

 

Turns 2 and 3

Below is a picture from the start of turn 2.

xNhCUtT.jpg

I sped up the left flank HH’s from 1 to 3, with the idea to get some AS shots in on his fighter wing on turns 2 and 3 as they try to turn the flank.   The HH on the right flank stay at speed 1.  Yavaris and Toryn work on the enemy’s fighter wing.  Below is a picture from the start of the turn.  I screwed up some Yavaris, FCT, FC shenanigans that forced me to keep Ten Numb back (last time I played him I rushed him in too quickly).  I did get too excited about an Ion Cannon Shot on his AFMKIIB, that I should have kept for a later round.

 

Turns 4-6

Sorry, forgot to take picture but below is a mockup of how the ships generally maneuvered.

g1n1NN9.jpg

I had my right flank HH’s slowly and then quickly maneuver to the right.  The orange one did his ER shot against the MC30, which I should have saved for the AFMKIIB.  The green HH got into perfect position at the bow of his AFMKIIB forcing a non-move in turn 4, with ramming damage.  The fighters punched it out, with me wiping out his wing, and only having a B Wing and Jan survive.

The left flank HH’s were able to come all the way across the board, and get behind the AFMKIIB on turns 5-6, but like a lot of great matches his AFMKIIB ended the game with 1 hull left on it.  I ended up losing 3 HH’s.  I striped the MC30’s shields, but it few away safely.  He got 3 of the Hammerheads, with the combined Akbar Gunnery Teams combo, but they held up a bit longer than I was expecting.    The left flank HH’s were able to come all the way around and get behind of his AFMKIIB.  I enjoyed their maneuvering, assisted by Leia. 

 

Result: 65 MOV = 4-7 Loss for me.

I lost 3 Hammerheads, Ten Numb, 1 B Wing, and 2 YT 1300’s

Killed the fighter wing of 3 X Wings, Wedge, Luke, Jan, and a B Wing

 

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Game 2

 I got matched up against my Corellian Conflict fellow Rebel Admiral, who I get to play from time to time.  He is a top-notch guy.  He had the unfortunate luck of getting matched up against the man, the myth, the legendary ‘stash @BiggsIRL,  for his first match.  (one of the highlights of the day was getting to meet BiggsIRL in real life).   It was the second time that he has played in a big tournament and drew BiggsIRL for his open match.  @BiggsIRL you need to add that to your Steel Squadron achievement tracker document.

So, my Corellian Conflict running mate was trying out a new Sloane ISD Avenger, Gunnery Teams, Quasar with FC, BC, EH combo, and a Raider II with Disposable Capacitors and Overload Pulse.  His fighter wing was daunting with 2 T/A’s, Howlrunner, 1 T/F, 2 T/I, Saber, Soontir Fel.  Saber sniping 6 dice is scary.  I thought to myself my fighter wing isn’t going to last past turn 3, but maybe we will take a lot of them down with us.

He chose to go first, and picked my Solar Corona as the objective.  The dice felt they were on my side this game. 

 

Turn 1

Once again, I forgot to take a picture at the start of the round.  The below picture is taken after he had moved his Raider and ISD, and after I had played my two Hammerheads to the port side of Yavaris (the left most one of them slowed to speed zero on turn 1).

irAjqQa.jpg

I tried something slightly different with my setup.  It idea was to stay away from the ISD until I could get through the fighter wing, or maneuver HH around both flanks, with potentially killing the Light Carrier.

 

Turn 2

The below pictures is from after his Raiders maneuver and my red HH on the right flank.

aeBEgOG.jpg

No major developments from ships, but the fighters started to get after it. He Alpha Striked my YT1300.   I then Yavaris FCT, FC maneuvered to setup a Ten Numb double tap, which was AWESOME!  He was outside of Toryn’s reroll bubble, but I was rolling hot, scoring the 2 needed crits.  That wiped out 3 of his fighters and put a hurting on others.  I was able to take the needed T/A out with Ten Numb direct shot, allowing the follow up Yavaris fighter activations to take down Howlrunner and other fighter, after she had already taken the Ten Numb damage.  Saber was also down to 1 hull.

 

Turn 3

As you can see from the below picture this was an ideal setup for me.  The green HH is able to do an AS shot against the squadrons, Yavaris is setup with Ten Numb well, along with Yavaris’s AS shots, and I have the activation advantage. 

V50Ttv1.jpg

His Raider had to navigate into black dice range on my left flank, were it got taken down by some HH + ER + CF (Leia Reroll).  Also, the rest of his fighters go down due to Yavaris and Ten Numb, assisted by some HH AS shots.  I then try the “FORTUNE FAVORS THE BOLD” maneuver and try to cut across the arc of his ISD to hopefully cause a log jam between his two ships.  I know HH’s are about to die on the next few turns, but maybe I can outmaneuver outside of the front arc over the next few turns.

 

Turn 4

Below is a picture of the start of turn 4.  As you can see, from my explanation above, I am trying to maneuver to his left/port flank.  The goal is to kill the carrier and stay out of the ISD’s front arc.

zblVQuM.jpg

 

Turn 5

This is the turn HH’s start to die.  Below is picture from the start of the round.  The ISD finishes off 2 of the Hammerheads, after they had been damaged slightly the previous turns.  I was definitely worried about Yavaris.  The Hammerheads get some Extend Rack action in, but the Quasar doesn’t die, but is badly damaged.  I get crazy and decide to turn my stern of Yavaris to the ISD, due to 1 more shield, for a slightly increased chance of survival, as you will see in the picture from the start of turn 6.  At this point it hadn’t take any damage.

WUFX6zW.jpg

 

Turn 6

Below is the start of Turn 6.

KhAsr4y.jpg

For me, it always feels like a good game of Armada comes down to the last few dice, and this one sure did.  Another Hammerhead went down from combined damage of the ISD and Quasar.  Yavaris survived the ISD’s shot to its rear.  His Quasar had to turn hard to starboard/right to not collide with the ISD.   They were stern to stern.  After the Hammerheads had shot at it, it was down to 2 hull points left, with no shields, and I believe no defense tokens.  I had the rear, 2 red dice, shot from Yavaris through ISD = obstructed for 1 red dice, and a B Wing in position.  I needed a total of two damage to get the kill.  I was feeling pretty confident.  Dice were in my favor and with the first roll from Yavaris, I killed it with the one red dice shot landing a double hit.  I didn’t even need the B Wings shot.  Yavaris was at long range from the ISD and thus survived the match.

 

Result: 71 MOV = 7-4 Win for me.

I lost 3 Hammerheads (again), 2 YT 2400’s, 1 B Wing

Killed Raider, Quasar, and the entire fighter Wing of 2 T/A’s, Howlrunner, 1 T/F, 2 T/I, Saber, Soontir Fel

Overall fun match with a great player.  It could have easily swung the other way in his favor.  He finished 5th overall for the day.

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Game 3

For the final match, I got bumped up to Table 2, and was matched up against my good friend and regular Armada sparring partner.  He was running Jerjerrod with VSDII GT, Minister Tua/ECM, QBT, Leading Shot.  He also had 2 ARQs with QBTs, Demolisher with APT and OE’s, and 1 Comms Net Gozanti.  He had a basic CAP of 3 T/F’s, Howlrunner, and Saber. 

We were both at 400 pts, and flipped for it, with him winning and taking first player.  Once again Solar Corona was chosen.  After seeing this setup, I felt the VSD and Gladiator were just a bit out of placement, and there was a small opening for me to maneuver to his right flank to take out the ARQs before the big boys got into the fight.  Thus, my idea was to setup like I did in Game 2, making it look like the force is headed right at the enemy, but then maneuver to one side, i.e. shift one HH from the right flank to the left side of the formation.  I thought the key for me, would be taking out his ARQs without losing a HH, then converge on the VSD and Demo with the bombers and the HH’s (so much for my plan of sitting back and letting the enemy come to me). 

 

Turn 1

Below is a picture of the start of Turn 1.  Note, his Demolisher is hiding behind the VSD(Flagship).  I start the maneuver by banking the right flank HH (red) in hard to the left.  I had Yavaris a bit too far back for my liking.  The fighters setup for Turn 2 clash.

qB34Aml.jpg

 

Turn 2

Below is the start of Turn 2.

7hBBtty.jpg

Our fighters started to get after it.  Again, Ten Numb was a beast.  As you will start to see, this match started to get to be a log jam of ships.  Amazingly I never rammed any of my own ships.   There are a few action shots coming up to illustrate how fun it is to fly the HH.

 

 

Turn 3

Sorry no picture.

I started to really worry about Yavaris being just a bit far to back, and going at speed 1.   I used the banked token to speed up to 2, and never slowed down after that, since I was committed to double tapping B Wings.   With the speed bump to speed 2 and the FCT/FC combo, I was able to wipe out his squads, and only lost 1 YT1300.  I am feeling pretty good about the overall setup by now.  I know some HH’s are going to die, but I could get both ARQs and setup my bombers and Yavaris to get after the VSD.  Demolisher was still the worrisome for me, but I felt I could shift the bombers towards it, if it came racing it.

 

Turn 4 – 5

So here is where I start to forget to take pictures, and start taking “Action Shots” since they were cool Star Wars moments (“Call up a Hammerhead Corvette.  I have an idea.”).   I believe this is from the end of Turn 4/beginning of Turn 5

RiJMfES.jpg

The picture below is from after my Red Hammerhead goes down late in Turn 4/beginning of Turn 5, but it took an ARQ with it.  Yavaris is just off shot to the left.  Amazing no one rams here, and the log jam forces him to maneuver accordingly.  Turn 5 sees me take down the 2nd ARQ and the Gozanti, and the Yavaris double tap of the three B Wings start to get after the VSD.  Another one of my Hammerheads goes down.   Again, Leia assisted maneuvers allowed me not to ram any of my own ships.

A6UB6w2.jpg


Below is basically how everyone maneuvered in Turns 4 through 6.

5n7xHlS.jpg

Turn 6

Between Demolish racing in and the VSD, I lose Yavaris (Flagship) and the third and final HH.  I am able to finish off the VSD with the B Wing Brothers, to cap off another fun, high flying, handful of black dice chucking match.

 

Result: 89 MOV = 7-4 Win for me.

I lost 3 HH’s, Yavaris, 1 YT 1300

Killed 2 ARQs, 1 Gozanti, VSD (flagship), 3 T/F’s, Howlrunner, and Saber

It was another fun match, where I found the Hammerheads flew more interestingly then I had previously expected them to.  My good buddy finished 4th on the day.

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Conclusions/Take-Aways

I ended up with 18 points and lucked into 3rd Place with with a build that I thought would get lit up.  Factoring into this might have been that I never got to play the top two guys (probably better for me).  It is always a shame to see guys from Pittsburg come into Northeast Ohio and beat the local team, but that has been the norm for the Steelers and Browns for quite some time (sorry to all you non-NFL/American Football fans out there).  Again, great to meet @BiggIRL and his wingman in destruction.  They took the top two spots at the Store Championship.

Leia is fun to play.  Others have summarized here abilities better, but I loved going from speed 1 to 3, back to 1 the next turn with Leia’s assist.  Numerous times on turns 2 and 3, when I didn’t have a great shot on a ship, so I used a HH to CF 2 black dice against a juicy squadron, with the reroll to boot.  I didn’t repair much, but Yavaris Repair with Leia is slick, and how could I forget Yavaris double tap of three squadrons two turns in a row (with no Raymus or Comms Net GC75), to decimate some fighter wings and unload on some ships. 

Captain Obvious Statement of the day, HH’s worst enemy is Gunnery Teams on a big ship.  Once, I lost two already slightly damaged HH’s to a big Imperial flagship, since I got them too close.  Again, “… fortunate shuns the stupid.”  I flew them tight together.  I kept thinking I need to spread them out more, but then as situations developed, I thought I would have to overwhelm a ship with a dual HH knockout punch, or it would just slip by next turn.   Amazingly, I don’t think I had any “blue on blue” ramming all day. 

The Hammerheads are fun to fly.  I did get a good amount of quality ramming and blocking in with the HH, and forced my opponent to maneuver into places they didn’t want to, due to multiple incoming HH’s.  I enjoyed their maneuver template, along with Leia’s ability backing things.   As, I said lots of speed changes from 1 to 3, with extra clicks made for a fun day.  Even though I was trying to get them out of my system, I will most likely be running more Hammerheads in my next few matches.

Others have commented before, but I think the best number of Hammerheads is 2-3 in a fleet, with another bigger hitter. 

It has been said before, but Ten Numb is an absolute beast (as long as you have Yavaris and Toryn).   We was the hands down MVP in 2 out of 3 of my games.  He was rolling hot in Game 2, and the Toryn support made him sing in Game 3.

External Racks are fun as heck, especially with Leia.  Having a little guy chuck 1R, 1B, and 4BL is no joke.   Many times when I had a double arc, I would throw the front at 1R, 1B, 2BL with CF and the Leia reroll.  Then, the side arc would use the ER for 3 black dice.  Don’t know if it was the best call, but it was fun.  All day long, due to having Leia, I only regretted not having Ordinance Experts on the HH’s once or twice.  The built in reroll on a CF were excellent, along with Toryn.

Store Championships are awesome.  Special thanks to @Darth Sanguisfor TO’ing and hosting the event in his local store.  Everyone was great, and it was a friendly environment.   If I could ignore family and life, I would be at the next Store Championship I could get to in a heartbeat.

p.s. I am an absolutely sucker for cool Star Wars moments like this...

kjchYtU.jpg

Edited by LT BDP

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