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Boom Owl

Scenario: So You Think You Can Joust?

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So You Think You Can Joust?

Rebel List: XXX

Luke Skywalker — X-Wing 62
Supernatural Reflexes 12
Proton Torpedoes 9
Servomotor S-Foils 0
Ship Total: 83
   
Wedge Antilles — X-Wing 52
Predator 2
R3 Astromech 3
Servomotor S-Foils 0
Ship Total: 57
   
Thane Kyrell — X-Wing 48
Predator 2
Proton Torpedoes 9
Servomotor S-Foils 0
Ship Total: 59

vs

Imperial List: Jonus Brothers

Colonel Jendon — Lambda-Class Shuttle 46
Admiral Sloane 10
Ship Total: 56
   
Scimitar Squadron Pilot — TIE Bomber 28
Barrage Rockets 6
Ship Total: 34
   
Scimitar Squadron Pilot — TIE Bomber 28
Barrage Rockets 6
Ship Total: 34
   
Scimitar Squadron Pilot — TIE Bomber 28
Barrage Rockets 6
Ship Total: 34
   
Captain Jonus — TIE Bomber 36
Barrage Rockets 6
Ship Total: 42

The Setup: Rebel player sets up in the middle of the board. Imperial player sets up close to keep Sloane and Jonus pilot abilities active. 

6hHnhn9.png

Round 1: Jendon hard stops. Bombers 1 forward and all 4 lock Wedge. X-Wings bank in on the Imperial ships immediately. Wedge barrel rolls to move around the rock. 

c81I0z6.png

Round 2: Bombers and Lambda 1 forward and focus. Wedge continues his mission around the rock. Luke and Thane move to "flank". 

5Ghd9l5.png

Round 3: Imperial player does a 3 straight with everything to hopefully catch Wedge in range. Wedge 1 banks in and is just inside Range 3 of the entire Imperial list. 

 q0HOsbK.png

Round 4: The Jonus/Jendon list does an expected 8 damage to Wedge and he dies. Jendon the sloane carrier loses 5 of the expected 7 hp after taking a primary shot from Wedge, and two proton torps from Thane/Luke. 

yoPOFvB.png

Questions:

  • What happens next? Is the game basically over for the Rebel player by Round 4?
  • Should/Could the rebel/imperial player have done something differently on approach? ( Many Things )
  • Was Jendon the correct Target? 
  • Was Wedge the correct Target?
  • Does one list have a clear advantage over the other going into this game? 
  • Is there "in game" counterplay involved in this matchup or do the bombers just win most of the time? 
  • What plainly obvious and significant weaknesses does the bomber list have that can be easily exploited? ( There are several )
Edited by Boom Owl

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I don't even begin to understand any of what the Rebel player was trying to do here, starting with listbuilding.

I don't understand why anyone thought 3 X-Wings was good enough to joust anything in this game.  I don't understand why Biggs isn't there.  I don't understand why anyone went and sat in front of 15 fully modded dice.  I don't understand why it was Wedge not Luke that did it.  I don't understand why you wasted shots on stuff you knew wouldn't kill Sloane instead of dropping Jonus to reduce incoming damage and just coping with stress on Thane.

Edited by SOTL

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I dont know if the game is lost, but my priority target would be jonus. He is the backbone of the list improving 3 of his 4 colleagues attack.

I would also flee a bit the combat for maybe engage in a better place, in the rocks for example.

I not sure but this is my feelings

 

Edited by player2422845

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2 hours ago, SOTL said:

I don't even begin to understand any of what the Rebel player was trying to do here, starting with listbuilding.

I don't understand why anyone thought 3 X-Wings was good enough to joust anything in this game.  I don't understand why Biggs isn't there.  I don't understand why anyone went and sat in front of 15 fully modded dice.  I don't understand why it was Wedge not Luke that did it.  I don't understand why you wasted shots on stuff you knew wouldn't kill Sloane instead of dropping Jonus to reduce incoming damage and just coping with stress on Thane.

^^^^This. So much this.

Everything seems wrong from the Rebel player. The list is poor, the set-up and opening terrible and target priority is wrong. Assuming we keep the same list, the Rebel player should be setting up a long way from the Imperials and trying to drag them through the rocks. If they refuse to turn in, good flying should allow you to time your initial engagement to reduce incoming fire and hopefully remove Jonus before he can mod any shots at all, or at least before all the Bombers fire. If you can manage that, then trade one X-Wing for a Bomber next time around you might be OK - 2 higher Initiative X-Wings against 2 Bombers and a Lambda should do OK with some good flying.

As far as Wedge being the correct target, I think the Bombers might struggle to kill Luke once their numbers start dropping so I'd try to go for him first. Killing Wedge first isn't bad though, especially if the Rebel player can't even trade him for another ship, as happened in this example.

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Once the bombers all lock Wedge, it might make sense for Wedge to immediately make a hard turn and boost out of there, even though the first turn put him in a pretty bad place to do anything but joust.  If you’re splitting your forces to flank, you want whichever half the opponent targets to be able to get out of the way.

If the maneuvers go as shown, Jonus should probably be the target (as others have mentioned).  With Wedge saving focus for defense, Jonus should take 5.0 damage with multiple crits, so there’s a good chance he dies.  If he does, he’s not reducing the scimitars’ damage yet since they all have locks, but Jonus not getting to shoot means Wedge has a chance to live (5.3 expected damage).

It’s still an awful engagement for the rebels putting a locked target in front of the entire enemy list at their preferred range, but with favorable dice it’s not entirely bleak.

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I'm maybe not quite so down on the list as a whole than others, but I'm still puzzled you'd sacrifice robust upgrades all around just so that you can squeeze Thane in.

If you want to run Wedge, Luke and another 48 point X-Wing I think the other X-Wing has to be Biggs. Not just because it's themey, but because otherwise their target priorities are pretty obvious and the list is super squishy. As a third ship for the same points, Biggs just offers more to the list as a whole, IMO.

Why are the protons on Luke and Thane and not Wedge? I understand they're slightly easier to modify on Luke thanks to Force points, but if you only have room for one set of torps, Wedge is going to make better use of them - it's easier for him to get the TL at higher Init, and his ability works on the torps just as well as it does his primary. And they're certainly better on Wedge than Thane, who has no special means of modifying his torp shots. Yes, more dice means more chance to activate Thane's ability, but you're still way better off just putting damage on them in the first place than messing around trying to get Thane to work.

All that said, sadly I'm not convinced Luke and Wedge work all that well together. Building them properly just sacrifices way too many points on the rest of the list, unless you can find another super ace and run Wedge as light as possible with something like Crack Shot and R4 Astro. Wedge and Thane I think is fine, you've got a lot of options around that. But even with a relatively light Luke and Wedge (relatively), I'm struggling to even fit Moldy Kyle in as a support. Unless the only ordnance you run is one Adv Torpedo, you can't fit in Perceptive Moldy Kyle, and if you do you're sacrificing the bid. 

Everyone else has hit all the major points on the way the gameplay played out. I'm baffled that the Rebs had Initiative on the whole Imperial list and still chose to set up where and how they did. They should be on the opposite corner in a tight formation of three, at least initially. One of Luke or Wedge needs to flank eventually (probably Luke, as he's more resilient without Biggs than Wedge), but the option for either should be kept open as long as possible.

Also, the bombers are only getting that first long range target lock once. They're tipping their hand right off the bat, especially if they all focus one ship. Keep whatever they lock away from them for as long as is absolutely possible. 

Sloane is irritating, no doubt. But prioritising her is absolutely falling for the bait her card represents. Stress you can deal with. Being shot a bunch by four of the most efficient jousters in 2e, you can't. 

6 hours ago, Boom Owl said:

What happens next? Is the game basically over for the Rebel player by Round 4?

I'd say so, yeah.

If we're talking properly competitive, most likely result is that it goes to time. Rebs just don't have the firepower left to get through two full health TIE Bombers to tip the score. 

6 hours ago, Boom Owl said:

Was Jendon the correct Target? 

NOOOOOOOO!

6 hours ago, Boom Owl said:

Was Wedge the correct Target?

I'm going to say yes. Mostly because of the setup, Wedge was the closest and arguably had the least options to get out of the way of all four bombers.

While it's true that Luke gets harder to kill as the game goes on and you lose ships, you take the kills you're best able to get. Get something off the board. If that's their highest Init pilot, even better. Luke will be hard to kill, but it's also harder for him and Thane to kill the bombers. At best, you're now looking at them taking out one a round.

6 hours ago, Boom Owl said:

Does one list have a clear advantage over the other going into this game? 

Yes.

That Sloane/Jonus/Barrage list is mean.

X-Wing hasn't gained enough tricks to make it a super arc dodger, IMO. Not against a block of four like that. And 6HP behind 2 greens with no regen is still squishy. 

6 hours ago, Boom Owl said:

Is there "in game" counterplay involved in this matchup or do the bombers just win most of the time? 

I think the X-Wings can win.

They have a solid dial, access to barrel roll and boost and have the Initiative advantage across the entire list. 

They need to use the rocks better - the bombers are basically totally action dependent - they need focus for those barrage rockets, and they have to get that each turn, meaning forcing them to go through or on a rock drops them down to being fat TIE Fighters. 

The X-Wings can also hit harder. Get all three lined up at Jonus, and assuming everyone is at range 3, everyone has a target lock and Luke and Thane fire their torps, you're looking at 5.8 expected damage with an 85% chance of at least one crit. That's close enough to outright dead as it is, and getting Wedge to range 2 means he's basically definitely dead. Even if you don't kill him, you've almost certainly forced him to spend the focus, so he's not shooting those rockets anyway. That's also not including Thane's ability. As calculated there, Thane has no way to modify his eye results. If he's shooting last, and his hits don't kill Jonus outright, there's a very good chance he can find a Direct Hit in the damage cards dealt by Wedge and Luke. 

Thane then takes double stress, but that's okay. That's when all three close s-foils and bug out.

Basically, the counter play as I see it should be for Thane and Luke to just keep their s-foils closed until they've spent both of their torps. Keep all your reposition options open, and dodge every arc you can until you get the right shot. 

 

EDIT: Hang on, Something else I've spotted. Do Wedge and Thane not both have bullseye on the bottom left Bomber (as we look at it)? And is Thane not at range 1 of that Bomber?

In that case, I would definitely have taken a focus on Thane, and had all three fire at that Bomber. It's not Jonus or Jendon, but if you're bringing Predator this is exactly the moment you want to make use of it. Thane is rolling the same four dice he would have done with the torps, only this time he gets a focus and 1 re-roll instead of just a target lock, so he's better off. And Wedge is rolling the same number of primary dice anyway, only he also gains a single re-roll to go along with his focus.

The situation is already horrible, but even if you'd built that list and made those maneuevers, I think targeting that bottom left Bomber represents your best chance to reduce the incoming fire on Wedge. Putting the numbers in suggests he's wiped out and then some. Something like 6.7 expected hits and a 99.6% chance of a crit (though that drops a bit if Luke is at range 1 firing a primary, rather than range 2 firing the torps)

Edited by GuacCousteau

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So the rebel player messed up. But this scenario where both the list and the approach are far from ideal happens every tournament, right? So it can still be interesting to discuss WHY he messed up!

As rebel player and realising my mistake after setup, I‘d go right and force the block through the rocks. Maybe in addition have Luke trailing behind to ‚offer‘ a target as bait.

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7 hours ago, Boom Owl said:
  • What happens next? Is the game basically over for the Rebel player by Round 4?
  • Should/Could the rebel player have done something differently on approach?

I can’t speak to the other questions as I have yet to have enough 2.0 experience to speak to target priority, but the answer to these questions are-

 

a) yes, the game was over the instant the rebel player decided to throw their biggest advantage (higher initiative) in the trash by flying wedge right at the opponents squad as if he was init 0.

 

b) yes. 

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2 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

So the rebel player messed up. But this scenario where both the list and the approach are far from ideal happens every tournament, right? So it can still be interesting to discuss WHY he messed up!

As rebel player and realising my mistake after setup, I‘d go right and force the block through the rocks. Maybe in addition have Luke trailing behind to ‚offer‘ a target as bait.

Ya you probably need to use some clever maneuvering and boosting in an attempt to force the imperial formation to choose between splitting or going through the triangle of rocks for the first engagement.

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27 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

So the rebel player messed up. But this scenario where both the list and the approach are far from ideal happens every tournament, right? So it can still be interesting to discuss WHY he messed up!

As rebel player and realising my mistake after setup, I‘d go right and force the block through the rocks. Maybe in addition have Luke trailing behind to ‚offer‘ a target as bait.

It's definitely quite easy to criticise the set-up and opening with plenty of time to do the analysis but you're right, these situations do happen a lot. I've probably made similar screw-ups myself in tournament games. Analysing the scenario as is can still be useful, though in this case I think maybe the scenario was taken one turn too far. At this point it's not quite lost, but a very difficult game for the Rebel player. Taking it from the turn before might have been a more interesting scenario.

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From the get go, if that was where the ship started I would have flown the X-wings around the right side of the rocks forcing the bombers to also circle or try to navigate through them if they wanted earlier shots.  Either way, with the Lambda being on the board, that formation would have had to at least break up where it was more beneficial than letting them drop Wedge like that.

And as others noted, if/when you do just fly in their face like that, at least shoot Jonus and kill a ship, instead of damaging the shuttle and killing nothing 

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25 minutes ago, LagJanson said:

I don't believe this to be true. I believe it's more most people don't know how to win.

Basically this! 

I look at the above matchup and see some serious advantages for the rebel list. 

Its all i5+ ships against two "big bases". 

The imperial player gives up essentially 100% complete information on where all 4 of their bombers will be until Jonus is dead, and then the game is even more in favor of the rebel player. 

If Jendon was Soontir, Maarek, Redline, or Whisper than sure things get a bit more difficult but still absolutely solvable, particularly with a slightly better Rebel list.  

Even in that case the location of the bombers and their direction is basically a known quantity as soon as ships are placed. Thats a big deal. One that the math won't make obvious. 

If the rebel player doesn't do anything with the position information they have been given they deserve to lose every single time. If they ignore it they genuinely did not play as well as their opponent. 

In this case it doesnt even require I6 to take advantage as essentially any initiative level ship can set up an engagement to stay out of arc of these bombers.

Of course...no one has mentioned this yet...

  • What happens if the imperial player fortresses?
  • What does the Rebel player do in that scenario?
  • Try to get to Range 1?
  • Does Luke just wait to see how committed the bombers are to stay in their fort? 
Edited by Boom Owl

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23 minutes ago, GreenDragoon said:

Can Wedge get away if he does a T-roll left for round 3, then fast forward+boost in round 4? How many arcs will he dodge there?

Wedge probably could have barrel rolled slightly further back the turn before so when he banked in he could try to stay fully out of Range of the back line of bombers?  Comes down to a guess on if the bombers will go fast twice or not? Not a great initial 1-2 rounds for Wedge regardless of that overall. To be honest I put this scenario together mostly to highlight what playing X-Wing 2.0 poorly often looks like. It looks a lot like this. 

How do you not joust to begin with is the key question here? 

And if you do end up jousting for some strange reason whats the most optimal joust?

In this case it might have been to get Wedge to range 1 once he committed?

Edited by Boom Owl

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31 minutes ago, Boom Owl said:

How do you not joust to begin with is the key question here? 

And if you do end up jousting whats the most optimal joust?

In this case it might have been to get Wedge to range 1 once he committed?

Using the rule of 11 here: after round 2, Wedge is in 3 lengths, the bombers are in 4, total of 7. The bombers themselves messed already up by doing a 3 straight, because a 2 is enough (unless Wedge turns away ofc). I would additionally say that the imperial player should put Jendon inside and do a bank for round 3, opening up the arc.

From rebel perspective, for turn 3 after length of 7, every combination will land you in range 3. So he messed up the turn before! A better move can be from boosting in, or rolling out, to going way faster. 

How to realize early enough?

After round 1, the ships have moved 3, so 8-2 to go. Looking at the extremes: if the rebel moves 4 and the imperial 2, they are in range for the front row. If the imperial moves 4 and the rebel 2, same thing. It looks like the rebel wanted to stay out in that case and so did a 1. But I argue that speed 2 should have been his minimal speed move! If the imperial player moves 4: roll out of range. If the imperial player moves 1: boost closer. In both cases you are still out of range, but have controlled the distance. The imperial player can‘t react at all! Wedge can then next turn try to run through them, get away, whatever.

Now here the imperial went 1 instead of 2, and that means you can easily boost anyway.

Edited by GreenDragoon
Clarified a bit

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To be fair, the Rebel list is not built for jousting, like, at all.  They are a high initiative force that can reposition well.  That's their primary strength here that was not capitalized upon.  This same list would lose the same way if it went head to head with a TIE swarm.  The Rebel player really needed to use a liberal amount of speed and boost with all of his ships from the get-go and if he was determined to use one ship as a diversion then it should never have actually got close to the enemy (turn hard left with Wedge and then double back with a T-roll or K-turn, not fly directly into fire).  The torps and superduperforceflexes tally up to 30 points on their own which seems a real waste.  Throw in a diversion craft for that many points: an A-wing that's just there to mess with the enemy.  Meh - lots of mistakes here on the Rebel side, from list building to goals to position.

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Lots of useful comments already, but I'll add my two cents.

  • People have dismissed the rebel list, but I think I'd like it with a few tweaks. Put torps on Wedge and Luke, take SR off of Luke and re distribute the points, and run a VERY lean Thane.
  • I'm more prone to critisize the imperial list on account of redundancy (redundancy). The list has lots of ways to get re-rolls for your dice (Sloan giving stress, Jonus, the locks from Jendon, and just the ability of the rockets). This is great when you HAVE to have a focus to even roll with the rockets because now you have ~94% accuracy on each of your dice, but you may just want to back off a little on ensuring that you are getting those re-rolls.
    • If you take out Jendon you can either fit in an ACE or MOAR!!! TIE bombers; it's tough to justify Jendon when you are already getting re-rolls and you don't need a lock to fire.
    • Jendon is the correct choice if the bombers had proton torps, but the rockets are just so much more versitile.
  • The rebel player should have two hard and boosted after he was locked in the first round
    • The idea here is to prepare for the 5-K that the bombers will do so that he can do Wedge things while they have no dice mods. 
    • I think Luke and Thane can kill a Jonus in the first round of shooting (damage WILL go through and Thane WILL give you the worst crit he can find. 

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31 minutes ago, BDrafty said:

Lots of useful comments already, but I'll add my two cents.

  • People have dismissed the rebel list, but I think I'd like it with a few tweaks. Put torps on Wedge and Luke, take SR off of Luke and re distribute the points, and run a VERY lean Thane.
  • I'm more prone to critisize the imperial list on account of redundancy (redundancy). The list has lots of ways to get re-rolls for your dice (Sloan giving stress, Jonus, the locks from Jendon, and just the ability of the rockets). This is great when you HAVE to have a focus to even roll with the rockets because now you have ~94% accuracy on each of your dice, but you may just want to back off a little on ensuring that you are getting those re-rolls.
    • If you take out Jendon you can either fit in an ACE or MOAR!!! TIE bombers; it's tough to justify Jendon when you are already getting re-rolls and you don't need a lock to fire.
    • Jendon is the correct choice if the bombers had proton torps, but the rockets are just so much more versitile.
  • The rebel player should have two hard and boosted after he was locked in the first round
    • The idea here is to prepare for the 5-K that the bombers will do so that he can do Wedge things while they have no dice mods. 
    • I think Luke and Thane can kill a Jonus in the first round of shooting (damage WILL go through and Thane WILL give you the worst crit he can find. 

I actually don't mind the redundancyredundancy - it means the Imp player can actually split forces to counter arc-dodgers if he has to. Yes, he could have done more, but he's playing it safe, which isn't a bad thing.

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