The Hype Train

This was going to be a short post. Really, it was. I was going to just talk a bit of hype about the UK SYSTEM OPEN!!! which is happening THIS WEEKEND!!!!

I know. Probably a bit over the top. But Kris Mitchell is captain of the Hype Train and I am boarded and ready to go!

Beware the ThorneSwarm

I am past thinking about my list. Whatever happens, happens. Win or lose I will be loving every game and taking in the amazing atmosphere as hundreds of X-Wingers from all over Europe (and maybe some from even further afield?) converge on Milton Keynes to roll dice and shout ‘Natties!’ (JARGON ALERT!!).

I’ll be seeing people I haven’t seen since last year and meeting some brand new people, spending time with other Exiles and just generally basking in the glorious goodness that the UK System Open seems to bring.

So yeah, I’m excited.

Now like I said, I’d intended to keep this super short and cover some stuff next week BUT I had another night of practice and since next week will be ALL about (most obvious spoiler ever) this weekend I thought I’d cover what happened.

So in the spirit of keeping it short and with the unusual circumstance of having time for two games, once again I will refrain from full, blow by blow batrepping for these games (I’m sorry/you’re welcome, delete as appropriate for your point of view). Plus I’m short on time for writing/editing and I need to properly sort out my bag for the weekend.

Speaking of what’s in the bag, here’s my list for the evening:

Luke Skywalker (62)
Servomotor S-Foils (0)

Ship total: 62 Half Points: 31 Threshold: 3

Ten Numb (48)
Stabilized S-Foils (2)

Ship total: 50 Half Points: 25 Threshold: 4

Braylen Stramm (52)
Ship total: 52 Half Points: 26 Threshold: 4

Jake Farrell (36)
Ship total: 36 Half Points: 18 Threshold: 2

Total: 200

View in Yet Another Squad Builder 2.0: https://raithos.github.io/?f=Rebel%20Alliance&d=v8ZhZ200Z4XWWWW142Y74XWWWWWW313Y73XWWWWWWY50XWW&sn=Unsaved%20SquadronSOS%2020%20HS%20List&obs=

Mini Batrep 1

My first game of the night was against Alex. Alex was all booked in to go to the SOS but due to some unfortunate circumstances had to cancel his ticket. Despite this he has been playing hyperspace legal lists the last few weeks so that those of us who are still going are testing on a level playing field. What a guy.
He also has a whole bunch of his ships in for painting so is without his preferred Jedi and Naboo N-1 starfighters. The list he brought is hyperspace legal but contains some pieces that he isn’t too sure about (as in, whether it’s good or not as a list) but as he’s not looking for a super competitive list he wasn’t all that bothered.

Obi-Wan Kenobi (48)
R4-P17 (5)
Calibrated Laser Targeting (4)

Ship total: 57 Half Points: 29 Threshold: 2

“Broadside” (36)
Ion Cannon Turret (5)

Ship total: 41 Half Points: 21 Threshold: 4

“Wolffe” (50)
Ship total: 50 Half Points: 25 Threshold: 5

“Jag” (48)
Ship total: 48 Half Points: 24 Threshold: 5

Total: 196

View in Yet Another Squad Builder 2.0: https://raithos.github.io/?f=Galactic%20Republic&d=v8ZhZ200Z278XW214W200WY364XW138WWWWWY342XWWWWWY339XWWWW&sn=Unnamed%20Squadron&obs=

My first thought was to pick an objective. Obi-Wan is the obvious target in this list but he’s also so far and away the hardest one to pin down and put damage on to. Especially against the slower B-Wings and X-Wing and even more so when he’s moving last. I figure if I can can put some heavy damage onto his ARC-170’s and Y-Wing then I should do enough damage to score some decent points. Maybe.

With my list at a full 200 Alex gets the choice and gives me first player which gives him an additional advantage with Obi-Wan being able to double reposition after Luke has moved.

We place rocks and then Alex puts down his first ARC-170 in the top right corner and Broadside in the middle. I place my 2 B-Wings in the bottom right corner and Jake in the middle. Alex places Wolffe next to his other ARC before I place Luke in my bottom left corner and Alex places Obi-Wan directly opposite him.

My main objective is to keep Luke alive, sacrificing other ships if needed since Luke is likely the only one to be able to to put consistent damage into Obi-Wan and having extra agility over the B-Wings and extra attack dice over Jake.

During the first few turns Alex’s ARCs and Y-Wing head towards the middle of the board while my B-Wings fly up the board edge and Jake holds in the middle. Luke hard turns towards my other ships and aims to put some distance between him and Obi-Wan who is 5 forward and boosting in fast, hot on his tail.

Variance in this game was very swingy. In Alex’s first few attacks he maxed out all his red dice either with natural hits and crits or with eyeballs backed up by focus. In return I put 4 damage onto Jag including a crit which turned out to be a Direct Hit! So, super harsh dice rolls on both sides but also I failed at my ‘keep Luke out of trouble’ objective. Somehow I thought the gas cloud would help me. I guess this is what happens when you don’t move last.

Before I knew it Luke had been dropped to half points. Bad times.

You may also have noticed Jake being parked on a debris. I misjudged the distance and obviously then didn’t complete the barrel roll/boost escape move to follow it up. Annoyingly this led to Jake being out of the fight for several turns.

After this was lots of chaos but generally it went like this – my ships fire, damage gets through. Ships shoot at Luke, miss completely. I mean, some damage did get through but while Luke was consistently surviving on 1 hull I was deleting Alex’s list 1 ship at a time.

When we hit 75 mins Alex finally killed off Luke before being half pointed between shots by Jake, Braylen and finally Ten Numb.

After a good fun game Alex had taken Luke out and got half points on both B-Wings to score 113 while I’d scored 168. Not too bad.

Mini Batrep 2

My second opponent of the evening was Ben. He’s been playing a good while and knows his stuff but hasn’t been down to the store as regularly as some of the others. He has been down more of late (and has brought someone new along as well) and he’s a good player who knows his stuff.

His list is a Sinker swarm. I know what you’re thinking (hopefully not “why am I reading this drivel?!”) – that’s not Hyperspace legal!!. I know but as I don’t get to play Ben much and he’s available to get started straight away, I don’t mind. I think of it like running with a weighted pack. The new Hyperspace format has reduced the power of several strong list archetypes (JARGON ALERT!!) including the Sinker swarm (by, quite simply, removing Sinker altogether) while some (like droid swarms with TA-175) are still fine. A game against an extended list, and one that’s been proven strong at that, would be a good challenge.

“Sinker” (54)
Ship total: 54 Half Points: 27 Threshold: 5

104th Battalion Pilot (42)
Ship total: 42 Half Points: 21 Threshold: 5

Gold Squadron Trooper (25)
Synchronized Console (1)

Ship total: 26 Half Points: 13 Threshold: 3

Gold Squadron Trooper (25)
Synchronized Console (1)

Ship total: 26 Half Points: 13 Threshold: 3

Gold Squadron Trooper (25)
Synchronized Console (1)

Ship total: 26 Half Points: 13 Threshold: 3

Gold Squadron Trooper (25)
Synchronized Console (1)

Ship total: 26 Half Points: 13 Threshold: 3

Total: 200

View in Yet Another Squad Builder 2.0: https://raithos.github.io/?f=Galactic%20Republic&d=v8ZsZ200Z280XWWWWY341XWWWWY321XW211Y321XW211Y321XW211Y321XW211&sn=New%20Squadron&obs=

The first and most obvious objective is to remove Sinker from the board. This list is going to be tough to chew through as Torrents seem to just never die and so removing some of their attacking efficiency is essential.

We set up the board and it looks like this:

The first few turns see me trying and succeeding in dragging the attacking force towards the obstacles while tucking Luke in behind the B-Wings. By the time we hit the first range 3 exchange of fire it looks like this:

In the second exchange of fire I hit sinker with everything that’s in range, strip shields and get a crit through which turns out to be a Hull Breach. The following shots were total carnage as Ben pulled out crit after crit and Sinker went down in flames

Ok, Sinker down in exchange for 2 shields on Luke and 1 on Ten Numb. Not ideal but I’ll take it.

What followed was turn after turn of bumps, stress turns and unmodded shots as we both slowly put damage onto each other’s ships.

With the clock running out Luke pulls out a Talon roll to put finishing shots into one Torrent while Braylen falls short of putting enough damage for half points on the second ARC by just one hit. Ben’s return shots give him half points on Braylen as well as having already got half on Jake and Ten.

It’s a close match in the end but I’ve scored 80 while Ben’s got 69.

Conclusion

Well, it’s far too late in the game to do much now (I mean, for a lot of people that isn’t the case, I’m just not good enough to rock up with a thrown together list and smash face) but I don’t think I want to anyway. I’m getting more comfortable with how the list works and what the interactions are. It really does have a lot of triggers to remember for a list with just 2 upgrade cards. Still, I’m ok with how it’s gone and all that’s left is to see what lists I come up against on Saturday!

So there we are. My lists are out there for all to see. If you’ll be there this weekend and get paired up with me, congratulations, you have an advantage to leverage. But even if that is the case and I take a beating I’ll still be learning what to do differently (other than plaster my list and tactics all over the internet, of course) and making a new friend.

So really, even if I lose, I win.

This hype train service to the UK SOS has reached the end of the line.

Mind the gap.

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