Hello and welcome to this week’s blog!
It might be a little unusual this week so please bear with me!
First of all I want to talk about some events that are coming up and I’ll do them in chronological order, starting with this coming weekend!
Hosted by Tin Squadron, this Saturday is the Cornish Nationals event in Truruo. It’s 4 rounds of swiss followed by a top 4 cut and it promises to be a great event! If you’d like to sign up or want more details check out the Facebook event page and drop them a message.
Next us is our very own December event at Firestorm Games Newport! This one is going to be a bit bonkers. Why? Well, because it’s:
- Cross faction
- No ban list
So the challenge is to bring the most horrible, broken, nonsense list and do awful things to people with it. How will it go? Will it be a disaster? Will someone find something so dastardly brilliant that they wipe the floor with everyone they face? Who knows!?!?
What I do know is that it’ll make a pleasant change from the high number of commonly used meta (JARGON ALERT!!) lists that are everywhere right now (guilty as charged!).
Last up is again one of our own events, this time it’s the Welsh Open!
In case you missed it, tickets for the Welsh Open 2024 went on sale a few weeks ago! This year’s event went really well and for next year we’d love to see it be bigger! We’re already working on prizes and planning side events and our Bounty Table Bucket O Swag is pretty heavy even at this early stage!
The tickets are a touch more expensive than this year’s event but that extra £5 gets you food on the Saturday so it’s basically the same price! Or cheaper, actually!
Ok, I think that’s it for the intro, shall we move on?
This is the last one of these for a little while (well, January…), I just wanted to let my Patrons know that everything got posted a few days ago for those who I didn’t already see at the Newport event.
Congratulations to Rebecca Westwood on winning the giveaway prize of the Gauntlet toy!
If you’d like to support the blog by signing up then you can do that here. Tiers start from £1 per month and the highest is £10 per month and you’ll get some lovely shiny things to use when playing X-Wing!
Right, moving on…
… to the XTC!
The tournament as a whole is now onto week 4 and things are certainly getting interesting.
This week we were up against Columbia who were 2-0 in our group after beating Ireland and Hellas. Not a good sign for us…
My work in the pairings wasn’t as good as it could have been for us and I didn’t feel especially confident going in.
As it happened, FOUR of our five games would be played on Friday evening.
With two 5pm games things started off a little rocky as Rebecca lost with Empire vs Republic. Steve pulled it back quickly though with an 18-16 win.
Phill was up next with Republic taking on Columbia’s Empire but unfortunately couldn’t pull it out of the bag.
Mike was playing late with Rebels taking on FO and after some pretty uncertain messages from him to the group during the game, somehow (well, a few early mornings are what I blame), I fell asleep before getting the result!
I woke to messages of congratulations as he’d pulled it out of the bag late on for a 21-20 win!
We went into Sunday’s 4pm decider tied at 2-2. The winner of this game takes the round. Tim King of the Sith Takers offered to stream it so that we could all experience the drama!
In Peter’s own words, it was going well until it wasn’t. He was up on points and, in my opinion, had a positional advantage but then Han started doing Han things (4 dice Trick Shot terrible roll, Han reroll into all paint. That sort of thing) and Peter’s ships started evaporating.
In the end it was a 10 – 17 loss for us which was certainly closer than the scoreline indicates.
Sadly that puts us at 2 losses from 2 rounds and highly unlikely (possibly technically impossible?) to qualify for the finals.
We still have 2 rounds to go though and maybe we will have a say in who does get through from our group? This week we’re against Scotland for the first of our home nations rounds. Rory Wilson and I met over Discord and did our pairings
Now if I’m being honest here, I think I’ve not got the best of this either and so we might be fighting an uphill battle here a bit.
So, maybe pop back next week to see just how well/badly things went!
The Batrep…? (JARGON ALERT!!)
This week a few of us ended up at Firestorm at casual night at around the same time and while there was almost the awkward ‘who plays who’ thing going on, we settled it very qucikly.
I was all set up to play against Josh and his Republic swarm when Rebecca Westwood turned up. Now, I’ve played Josh two or three times in the last month or so and so he packed up and moved to play against Peter while Rebecca set up to play against me.
This is interesting and a bit of a dilemma for me. Not for the game but for the blog.
You see, Rebecca is flying out Empire list in XTC and the XTC is still ongoing. Not only that but our next two rounds (As of publishing) are against Scotland and Ireland who, I’m assuming, are far more likely to be reading this blog than let’s say the Columbians who we played last week.
And so I’m not quite sure that I should really talk about this game, or at least not in as much detail as I normally would. Is this a bit overly paranoid? Probably. Would any of the Scottish or Irish players be able to glean any information to give them an advantage? I don’t know. Am I risking it?
I will give the broad strokes though.
Rebecca is playing the quite common three TIE Bombers, Vader and X other 4 point ship (in this case, Fifth Brother with Homing Missiles).
It’s a nasty list.
But… I’ve played against it twice with my Resistance list and beaten it both times so this time I decided to do something different. I mean, there’s nothing to lose, right? It’s just a casual game!
So I decided to joust it.
My broad plan here was to bring Lulo in through the middle in order to a) claim an objective in turn 2 and b) keep him out of danger in the initial engagement.
Now, I think that I made 3 mistakes here initially. And more later but 3 to start with.
First was range control. Ideally I wanted to just catch the front ship or 2 on the first engagement to give me a better chance of taking out a ship while minimising the return fire. I did NOT get that.
The second (and most avoidable of the three) was forgetting to use Swarm Tactics.
The third was banking in with Lulo when I should have hard turned.
The first engage was rather brutal.
Firstly, Vader went into Temmin and stripped a couple of shields. I then had a slight target issue. Zorii had locked Fifth Brother. Targeting the Bombers was probably the correct choice but since they’ve not got shields, firing Plasmas at them feels a bit wasteful. I fired them at Fifth and took a both shields.
I then found that Lulo didn’t have Fifth in arc. Oops. Lulo fired at Vader instead (despite the temptation of a range 1 into a Bomber) and got 1 shield off there. Ello goes into Fifth and gets him down to 1 hull and both Force spent and it’s at this point that I realise that Swarm might have been handy.
Jonus then fires at Temmin and wrecks him with Barrage Rockets.
Now we’re at i4 and while Temmin manages to finish off Fifth, my 1 hull Temmin has to take the dice of the Homing Missile and Rebecca rolls 4 hits out of hand. Dean Temmin.
Jess follows up with another hit into Vader and I lose a shield or two from other ships.
In the next turn I go into Vader and rather remarkably, Ello rolls all paint out of hand. Not bad!
Rebecca rolls 3 green dice and… THEY’RE ALL BLANK. Vader is dead.
On top of this I put a hit and crits past Jonus’ green dice and really, the result is pretty much a foregone conclusion.
Still, we play it out because we’ve not gone to the effort of coming just to pack up before the game is over!
Before dying Vader gets Ello down to just 1 hull but Rebecca can’t finish him off with any other ships.
Onto the next turn and I manage to forget that Bombers can, well, bomb.
Rebecca catches all of my remaining ships with bombs which finishes off Ello and chips some damage into everyone else.
I manage to take out Jonus and put some hits into Rhymer while Tomax is off picking up points.
I didn’t get a picture of the final turn but Zorii dived in to tag the middle objective while Jess and Lulo ganged up on Rhymer to take him out and the game was over.
Result: 24 – 12 win
So I guess this game answered a few things for me. Firstly, can I joust with this list? Absolutely yes. Even with poor (well, maybe not poor, but not ideal definitely) range control for the first engagement and the road roll giving a disadvantage and Lulo not getting arc and making the mistake of moving Ello after Zorii AND me forgetting swarm tactics, I still took off Fifth Brother, chipped 2 shields from Vader and drained some Force. In an ideal world I’d have initiative killed the v1 and Temmin would have survived but even with all this, taking down a ship a turn shows the power in the list.
My dice weren’t bad, obviously but I don’t know that I’d say they were super hot either. It turns out that being able to double mod most or all of your shots gives pretty reasonable results.
To be fair, Rebecca took it well and went down swinging, dropping bombs and chasing objectives to the very end but it was clear to both of us once Vader burned down how the rest of game was going to go.
I wouldn’t say that I’m bored of this list, not by a long shot, but I am considering a change. I feel like a rep or two with one of our XTC lists would be interesting to try out and would be worth it in case I need to step in. That said, I’m moderately interested to see how well this jousts other things Rebels with torps, Republic ARCs, that sort of thing, just to see what happens
The issue I have is the repacking of the bag. Hopefully I’ll find an hour to get a list printed and juggle the models and bases and dials that I need. Once XTC is done I might start looking for something a bit different to try out. Maybe a faction or ships that I don’t normally use. Actually, I can’t remember the last time I flew Republic. Maybe I’ll try that out…?
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A MASSIVE thank you to my wonderful Patrons for their ongoing support for the blog and enabling me to give away shiny things!
Mark Beor, Daniel Barringer, Dan Xuereb, Michael Bird, Steve Boulton, Jason Desmarais, Darin Schwarze, Alex Peters-Bean
Kevin Larsen, Alex Jensterle, HasNolo, David Bryan
Rebecca Westwood, Admiral_Ackbar47, Phill Blackmore, Chris Fear, Jamie Howard, Sean Oakley
You are all amazing humans!