Ramping up my reviewing.
Happily playing games for many, many years.
I played in this tournament about 2 weeks ago. Five players turned up to Good Games Ballarat to play in the game, with Garth, new to the game, providing a sixth player who played whoever had the bye. We had three rounds, all lasting about an hour, which gave us plenty of time to find new ways to choose the wrong manoeuvres!
X-Wing is a simple game, but playing it well? That’s difficult. I’ve been playing the World Championship build of two X-Wings (Biggs and Rookie Pilot) and two B-Wings (Dagger Squadron with Advanced Sensors), mainly because it’s a simple and effective build. Not to mention that it involves my favourite ship (the X-Wing) and also one of the best in the game (the B-Wing).
For those who don’t know how X-Wing plays, it’s pretty simple: each player choose a manoeuvre using a dial, then in turn (lowest pilot skill to highest) moves his or her ship according to the dial, using a manoeuvre template. After moving, the ship can perform one action listed on their base – generally one of barrel roll, focus, weapon lock or evade. After all moving is completed, ships fire at each other from highest pilot skill to lowest, rolling a number of special dice equal to their attack value to see how many hits they get. Hits are cancelled by defensive dice rolls, or shields. Each ship can take a certain amount of damage – generally from 3 to 6 points – before going Boom!
In these games, the winner would be whoever destroyed the most ships. Asteroids were added to the map to make things more interesting… ships that ran into asteroids take damage, and can’t fire if their base is touching the Asteroid. Good manoeuvring is really important in this game!
Match 1 vs Josh
You can see here how my first game began: Josh is moving into position with his Falcon and two B-Wings, whilst my force stays in formation on the left-hand side of the photo:
It didn’t take long for the ships to come into contact from here – and the contact was brutal, with a lot of attack dice being rolled and only a few defence dice. The trick with my build is to keep Biggs near the B-Wings so that he draws fire (his special ability requires the opponent to attack him if possible), but keeping him alive longer is very desirable if it can prevent the destruction of the B-Wings.
Biggs did not survive very long this game – the combined fire did for him – but I took out one of Josh’s B-Wings in return, and Lando in the Falcon had a close encounter with my two B-Wings.
From here, the Falcon couldn’t escape. Josh took down my other X-Wing, and we were left with my 2 B-Wings against his 1 B-Wing.
With Josh unable to fire at me, and me able to fire at him, the result was assured – a good victory for my first match.
Match 2 vs James
This match saw a swarm of TIE Fighters plus a Firespray hit the table. James would definitely be my most difficult opponent, especially as he’s played a lot more than me. He had a spread set-up, which contrasted greatly to my small group of fighters.
Once we got into contact, things got ugly, fast. It was not helping that my attack rolls were poor and James’ defense rolls were fantastic. I came out of it destroying only one of his TIE Fighters. Urgh.
Both my X-wings went down, and I was left pursuing the Firespray. Then it turned away, and my two B-Wings were flying around in circles. This game was going downhill, fast.
I hoped that the asteroids would give James more trouble, but they really didn’t. I converged on the Firespray again, and it used Markmanship against my B-Wing. Goodbye, B-Wing!
Time got called shortly afterwards. James had the win (modified), as our point total was too close. I’ve a feeling the Firespray finally went down beforehand, but my memory is wonky.
On to match 3!
Match 3 vs Sarah
Sarah ran three TIE Interceptors against my squadron, and shortly thereafter found the major problems with Interceptors: a bad defence will knock them out of the sky. Look at this picture. Count the Interceptors. Look at the range. Yes, lucky rolls will destroy Interceptors. Sarah was not amused.
Sarah then got into range and discovered her attack rolls weren’t much better than her defense rolls. My attack rolls were just fine, however. Another TIE Interceptor was destroyed.
Then Sarah’s last Interceptor ran into a rock.
This is *not* the position you want to find yourself in! The game ended shortly thereafter.
Meanwhile, on the other table…
The final result of the tournament? A victory for James, well-deserved. I came second.
Thanks Merric. History says the Rebels will not overcome the Empire in Ballarat.