To paint, or not to paint, that is the question

What drew me to X-wing when I first played it was that I could walk into a shop, buy a model, open it and be playing with it just as soon as i wanted.

At the time I was also playing Warhammer Fantasy Battle and enjoyed the painting and hobby aspects of the game, and was so glad that X-wing allowed me to take a break from that.

Fast forward 10 months or so and time has become a little more precious and Warhammer has dropped away for the time being, in contrast I have been playing more and more x-wing, in addition I have been multiple copies of releases when they came out.

The hobbyist in me wanted to put my mark and differentiate between models on the battle field, what follows are my edits and tweaks to the already amazing models from Fantasy Flight!

Millennium Falcon

My first attempt was to the Millennium Falcon, the ship itself i think looks fine, but the area where the engines are just annoyed me as a plain blank grey, and i wanted to add some “life” to these.

IMG_5583

The ship on the left shows the paint job and the one on the right as it is out of the box.

A-WIng

This is where I left things for a long while till my next project – the A-wing, everyone who is anyone seemed to be flying the Green Squadron A-wing (if they flew any A-wings that is), so i wanted a quick change.  I achieved this by leaving the main body of the ship alone and just over-painting the red with a green, highlighting and shading this.

IMG_5589

TIE Interceptor

Next up were some really basic mods that I have done to all of my imperial ships and that was to add a green “flash” to the tips of the guns to simulate the laser fire.

In addition after buying the Imperial Aces i wanted to have more of the Imperial Guard red ships and with a “spare” interceptor I took to a full repaint.. my first attempt.

IMG_5585

Green tips can be seen on all three interceptors and #7 is the full repaint with #10 the original Imperial Ace.

Lambda Shuttle

Sticking with the Imperials and with a similar frame of mind to earlier I added an engine glow to the Shuttle.

IMG_5591

HWK-290

Getting the bug my final ship for today is the repaint of a HWK-290, originally I repainted the red stripes with a blue, but after some consideration I went the whole hog.  Going for a light grey in a similar manner to the Millennium Falcon I applied a wash and then highlighted this, adding some coloured pipes and blue vision panels.  Although it cannot be seen I added a blue glow to the engines to finish the ship off.

IMG_557920141026_115916

In conclusion

I hope you appreciated the repaints, maybe if i get around to buying a second Firespray then I may repaint one of those, but as I only own one its staying as the original repaint at the moment.

I have been pleased with the efforts and also how well the smaller changes give some personality to the models and especially as the time taken to do this is minimal.

Soon I may have a helper to assist…

20141025_174708

Thanks for reading.

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X-Wing Knock Out – Sanctuary Games

Life moves in mysterious ways, a friend was meant to come and stay the night and whilst here “wanted to try out that new X-wing game”.  Unfortunately he cancelled last minute, freeing my Sunday up to go to a tournament.

The format was one that I have never really played in before and it piqued my interest – 150 points, Rebel Aces allowed, knockout – 2 losses and you can go home…(or play friendlies)

With 7 players turning up the owner stepped in to ensure there were no byes.

Choosing a list

Rebels or Imperials…I chose both and started to ponder things.

Imperials were Darth Vader + Proton Rockets + Outmaneuver + Engine Upgrade, Black Squadron Pilot + Draw their Fire, Rexlar Brath + Heavy Laser Cannon + Veteran Instincts, 2 x Sigma Squadron Pilots

Rebels consisted of Keyan Farlander + Heavy Laser Cannon + Push the Limit + Bwing/E2 + Weapons Engineer, Roark Garnet, Chewbacca + C3PO + Gunner + Millenium Falcon, Wedge Antillies + R2 + Push the Limit + Engine Upgrade.

Both these lists I considered would do well as they had high Pilot Skill to combat uncloaked phantoms, but in the end i chose the Rebel list.

Wedge AntillesPush the LimitEngine UpgradeR2Chewbacca FalconGunnerC-3POMillenium FalconRoark GarnetKeyan FarlanderPush the LimitWeapons Engineer   Bwing-E2   Heavy Laser Cannon

Players – Martyn Gough, Melvin  , Rich Tansey, Craig Sharp, Terry Carr, Grahame Mulliss & myself Chris Taylor with Rich Lacey acting as a spare.

The Plan

Without knowing anything about others lists and 150 point games really opening up some nice combos i was hoping that my PS 12 out put and Chewie would help solve that pesky Phantom issue.  Roark is never meant to fight but just stay at range three and if he gets a shot its a bonus.  Wedge does what he does and with the boost can hopefully get into the right position to deal a killer blow, Keyan i hoped would work – the round where he needs to shoot i would take PTL with a barrel roll or a focus and target lock saving the focus for defense if needed.

Would it work though?

Onwards and upwards to see how things would pan out…

Round 1 – vs Martyn and three tooled up Imperials,

  • Whisper +Advanced Cloaking Device + Veteran Instincts + Fire Control System + Gunner,
  • Colonel Vessery + Heavy Laser Cannon + Veteran Instincts + Assault Missiles,
  • Boba Fett + Proton Bombs + Weapons Engineer + Flechette Torpedoes + Predator + Assault Missiles + Slave-1

Things were about to get messy, the imperials had the drop on the rebel fleet with Pilot Skill 8,8,9 to my 4,5,7,9 so i spread out hoping i could take it slow and get my ships to bear before he could engage.  Round 1 and i actually remembered to take photos so here is their story.

DSCN0001

After exchange of fire the falcon is left on a single point of hull with just Boba Fett to shoot…but to the rescue comes Wedge causing a Blinded Pilot Critical leaving Boba Fett rolling no dice and with that Keyan blew him from the sky.

DSCN0004

Not to be outdone the imperials chase down Chewie but in doing so leave an opening and Whisper goes down.DSCN0005

Not one to give up Colonel Vessery takes the fight to the Rebels causing Keyan be destoryed.DSCN0006

The star of the show, Wedge, did not lose his cool and closed to point blank range to destroy the Colonel.DSCN0008

Roark spent the game flying around rescuing the recently shot down pilots, but was the star of the show giving Chewie what he needed to put the initial damage onto Whisper.

Win for the rebels 150-94

DSCN0009 Games in progress

Round 2 – Rich T

Rich was flying an Elite Rebel list of three A-wings and 2 B-wings, embracing the spirit of the Aces he had:

  • Tycho Celchu + Veteran Instincts + Chardaan Refit + Stealth Device
  • Jake Farrell + Veteran Instincts + Chardaan Refit + Stealth Device
  • Gemmer Sojan + A-Wing Test Pilot + Veteran Instincts + Chardaan Refit + Stealth Device
  • Keyan Farlander + Veteran Instincts + Heavy Laser Cannon + Advanced Sensors
  • Ibitisam + Veteran Instincts + Ion Cannon

Now before i get into this game i have to mention Rich’s first game vs Grahame everyone had finished except these guys and with 5 mins to go it was 0-0 eventually the game was won by Rich as Grahame flew Krassis off the board!

Rich vs Grahame in the great battle of evading DSCN0010

Knowing how hard it was to hit the A-wings I decided that the way forward was to take out the B-wings first and I set this up to go forward.

With Rich having the Pilot skill i set up in a corner so that i could bring all my guns to bear, Rich set up with his A-wings in line and the B-wings looking to come around the flank.

DSCN0013

The forces engage with Rich’s Keyan Farlander going down in the first pass, but Wedge is Ion’d and heading towards an asteroid with no shields

DSCN0014

The A-wings turn in to bring their guns to bear,

DSCN0015

Chewie boosts to safety while the A-wings get behind Wedge and Keyan, but fail to make the most of their shotsDSCN0016

Keyan and Ibitsam face off with Keyan coming out the winner, whilst Chewie chases down Jake.DSCN0017

After leading the remaining rebels on a merry old dance eventually Jake was bracketed by the remaining ships and was destroyed.

Two from two and things were looking good for the Knock out with a 150-37 win.

Game 3 vs Melvin and an 4 X-wings and an E-wing list, it was a lot of attack dice and this scared me especially if all those ships could be brought to bear in one turn.

  • 3 x Rookie X-wings with R2 Astromechs
  • Wedge + Shield Upgrade + R2 Astromech + Outmaneuver
  • Corran Horn + Veteran Instincts + R2-D2 + Shield upgrade + Fire control system

With a split set up Chewie was concerned of the triple rookies on the flank, as for the remaining ships i wanted to get Wedge taken down as he could be a real threat to Keyan or Chewie.

DSCN0018

Chewie takes the brunt of the rookie’s fire, but survives to take out Wedge

DSCN0019

The ships re-position for the next round and Keyan judges his turn to combine with Chewie and blow a rookie from the sky.

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With the ship advantage the rookies are destroyed and the chase is on for CorranDSCN0022

150-0 win (although my squad was pretty beaten up)

Three games, three wins and 4 players left going into the last round and I had played all three but they had not played each other.

I drew for my sins Rich and his elite ships again, the result was the same, although I lost Wedge early i managed to kill his B-wings and despite losing Roark for the first time over the weekend I ran out 150-56 winner.

Time to call out Honest Sith’s Insurance brokers

DSCN0023

In the other game Martyn beat Melvin leaving me on a 4-0 record and Martyn on 3-1.  With the time 5.30pm and the potential for 2 further games to try and decide this (I lose one and the a final game as a decider) we could have been looking at a 9pm finish and so we decided to call it there.

Tournament thoughts

Keyan Farlander – wow what a pilot, certainly man of the match, although I think in part due to Chewie taking the heat off him. Burning the stress to shoot was really effective.  Roark was a close second, this is the first time i have flown him with no upgrades and i think that was best as it meant I did not need (nor was i tempted) to fly him close to any fighting like i would have done if he had a turret – he actually took down a B-wing at range 3 in the last game too!  Gunner on Chewie or the Turret on Roark – gunner was certainly the better option.  I think weapons engineer was slightly wasted and Jan Ors on Roark would have been possibly a better choice.

The format knowing it was 2 losses and you were out was fine for this weekend, however we all underestimated how long this could go on.  With just 8 players we needed a potential 6 games and with 90 mins being allowed for each round there just was not enough time in the day.  If we had dropped to 100 point games and 60 mins we would probably have had the time to fit these in.

Still I was more than happy with a 4-0 winning record and took a small ship home with me at the end of the day.

A big thanks to my opponents and Martyn for organising and Rich for hosting this at Sanctuary Games,

I will be back for another tournament.

One final note was to the guys I did not play and their lists.

Grahame

  • Krassis Trelix + Heavy Laser Cannon + Gunner + Homing Missiles
  • Capt. Jonus + Proximity Mines
  • Turr Phenir + Veteran Instincts
  • Soontir Fel + Push the Limit
  • Dark Curse

Terry Carr

  • 4 X-wings and a Y-wing (unfortunately i missed taking notes of his list)

Craig Sharp

  • Dark Curse
  • Backstabber + Shield Upgrade
  • Obsidian Squadron
  • Howlrunner + Veteran Instincts + Stealth Device
  • Whisper + Advanced Cloaking Device + Veteran Instincts
  • Krassis Trelix + Stealth Device and Proximity Mines

One last note I am assisting in running a tournament in Derby, England on the weekend of 21-23 November.  If any of you readers would like to attend details can be found here http://bloodandglory.baddice.co.uk/

Thanks for reading and see you next time.

Chris

X-Wing Escalation Round 4

Well the last round was upon us and I was up against James and his TIE Defenders…supported by Whisper.

Delta Squadron Pilot  Delta Squadron Pilot 

Rexler Brath Veteran InstinctsHeavy Laser Cannon

WhisperAdvanced Cloaking device Advanced SensorsNavigatorVeteran Instincts

My list had Turr Phenir and Push the Limit on him and the Royal Guard, with Capt. Jonus and 2 defenders with Heavy laser cannons.

We set up in opposite corners with my interceptors trying to get around the flank, James had the initiative due to being one point lower than me.  I turned my defenders into the fight and as the ships approached managed to get several shots off, but only succeeded in stripping away the shields from one defender, in return I lost the shields on one of mine.

This is where I started to make mistakes, I had not been thinking straight and forgot about initiative and James blocked me with his defenders causing a triple ship pile up.  With both rexlar and whisper getting into range they did 7 hits out of 8 on Jonus who failed to dodge any and was blown from the sky.  In return I stripped a few shields from the other defender, but it was looking bad.

Defender Traffic Jam

Defender Traffic Jam

Que mistake 2 instead of regrouping I tried to maneuver to get shots, i should have flown off and got myself into position, this culminated with the royal guard landing on an asteroid and instead of being behind the defenders with a barrel roll boost he was right in front of both and with no shot – oh the shame, James took no pity and blew him from the sky.  Turr had tried to out flank Whisper, but to no avail and with a bunch of shots and failed dodges Whisper took him down before he could return fire.

WIth just two defenders vs all James ships i managed to get a consolation defender, and for a moment had several hits and a crit on Whisper…but he dodged enough to take the shots on his shields.

Now it was just a case of when not if and Whisper took down one defender with Rexlar pinning the other down and the game was over.

I was down 150-30

Conclusions

I needed more practice with this last list and James flew his list really well, the early mistakes really hit me badly, and i threw away both Interceptors when I had no need to do so these guys were in a great position to do some real damage and would hopefully have meant it was tit for tat ships for a while longer.

Whisper with the high PS and Navigator meant I really had no chance of getting him pinned down as he was always moving after my ships and I needed to rely on killing the other ships fast to enable me to get whisper in a cross fire and hope!

Hopefully the remaining games will be played soon and the final results issued, just as soon as i know them i will post them up here.

Thanks for reading.

X-wing Escalation Round 2

Although we have made it to round two, i am still yet to play a game at Santuary…maybe next time. So Andy suggested the Lincolnshire Poacher in Nottingham.  

Before the game I had looked at Andy’s list and had considered how i needed to fly my ships, for details have a look at my Round 1 blog

The Squadrons

With the asteroids down, we deployed in opposite corners, me in formation with Delta #13 having the Heavy laser cannon mounted and was deployed closest to the board edge.

Deployment

Despite my thoughts initially about staying out of Etahn’s fire arc, Andy flew him straight down the board, and for some reason I dismissed him from my mind i was so focused on taking out Airen Cracken and Ten Numb.

Tactical maneuvers

This was almost my downfall as he flew in from the flank blanketing my ships with his sensor arrays, this allowed Ten Numb to gain a double crit, on Delta #13 but fortunately one was saved.  Airen took another hit off Delta #14, but then it was the Imperials chance to fight back, and with a focused HLC shot at Airen he took 4 hits, dodging one to stay in the game.  Jonus clipped Ten Numb dropping a shield.

Fire at will

Airen was now running scared and banked to get out of the arc of the imperials, fortunately flying so close that he could not be targeted, however with Ten Numb, Jonus and Delta #13 all performing K-Turns they fired on one another with shields being burnt on both sides.  Fortunately Etahn clipped an asteroid and ended up directly in front of Delta #14 who did not shirk his duty and promptly took his shields leaving him on one hull.

Running the gauntlet

The following turn all the ships tried to disengage, and the shots fired were largely ineffective, but both sides had all their ships alive, so it was with several long range shots Ten Numb took three long range hits on Capt. Jonus then in the crossfire he failed to dodge the incoming fire from Etahn and was the first casualty of the battle.  However in return Delta #13 took aim with his HLC and blew Ethan from the skies, taking faith from his imperial comrade Delta #14 took focusd his fire and Airen was clipped spinning into a nearby asteroid.  With things looking grim Ten Numb tried to disengage, but with two delta squadron on his tail he was destroyed before he could plot his escape to hyperspace.

5 Death at range

The battle in the end going to the imperials and a 90-22 victory.

Aftermath

There were a few mistakes on both sides, me forgetting Etahn’s ability, although I did want to focus on the other ships, i had not intended to let him get on my flank by so much.  The mistake on Andy’s part was a dial error in not putting the right maneuver down for Airen which meant he was just outside of range 1 of Ten Numb so his ability was wasted.

Bizarrely three of the ships were taken out on the same turn and all the shots were at range 3, i was particularly disappointed in Jonus failing to roll 1 evade on 4 dice, coupled with Andy’s 6/6 hits (but that made up for my luck in shooting his ships earlier), but with a K-turn and stress he could not dodge.  This was a double blow as the delta lost his HLC re-roll and only took two hits on Etahn, but it was enough ditto for my shot at Airen Range 3 and snuck the one hit through that was needed.

Next up is ….I don’t know, unfortunately my next opponent has not pre-submitted their list so I will be flying into the unknown.

My list has now expanded to include a TIE Interceptor which I hope to use as a flanker, and the rest of the force will hopefully act as a hammer…but what will I be facing…

X-Wing Escalation

Some people from my local gaming store decided to run an escalation event over several weeks and i took the opportunity to jump right in.

Sticking my money where my mouth is (see my Defender blog) I wanted to run TIE Defenders in my list and so what better way to fill out 60 points than 2 Delta Squadron Pilots.

My plan though was to beef these up with Heavy Laser Cannons and Captain Jonus in support.  I had to do this in stages, to round 2 would be Jonus and HLC on one delta.

After this I needed to add another ship and wanted something with a little punch and the Royal Guard TIE + HLC on the other Delta provided this.  It would hopefully allow for the Interceptor to act as a flanker.

My final choice was Turr Phenir, I really like this pilot for his flexibility, the remaining points allowing Push the Limit on both the Interceptors.  All there was to do was to was submit this and see how things panned out.

Escalation Squadron

Escalation Squadron

 Captain JonusDelta Squadron Pilot Heavy Laser CannonRoyal Guard PilotTurr PhenirPush the Limit   

On to the Games 

Round one I had been drawn against Simon Kane, a relatively new player, but I was not sure what he was taking he turned up on the night.  

His list was Howlrunner w. Swarm Tactics, 2 x Black Squadron and an Academy TIE.

 HowlrunnerSwarm TacticsAcademy Pilot Black Squadron Pilot 

With an excellent initiative grab by myself i had the benefit of setting up first and also going ahead of his one academy TIE…

Our set up was diagonally opposite and with a good clump of asteroids in the middle of the board I felt i had the upper hand in navigating these.

Squadrons approach through the asteroid field

Squadrons approach through the asteroid field

The initial shots when they came in were from us both underestimating ranges, leaving two black squadrons vs my two defenders.  Fortunately I rolled up 6 hits destroying one TIE for the loss of 2 shields on one defender.  The next turn saw an error from Simon with Howlrunner clipping but landing on an asteroid, taking full advantage one defender put his shots into her, the other defender taking 2 shields, but coming through unscathed.  With Howlrunner taking a hit as she moved away from the asteroid, the defender on her tail took full advantage completing the job and blowing her out of the sky.  Despite some good maneuvering the TIE fighters failed to hit the defenders even at close range, and with 2 vs 2 the defenders performed their signature k-turn keeping the black squadron in their sights, with two fully focused shots he could not dodge the incoming fire, this was enough for the Academy pilot who had seen all his betters destroyed and he flew off to fight another day.

Result 60-0 win. 

Despite some initial concerns over the mini swarm, the mistake of Howlrunner hitting the asteroid and some shocking dice rolling in the attack meant the defenders came through with a solid win.  This could easily have gone the other way.

Next up I will be facing Andy Pelton and his second round squadron of Etahn A’baht (32) + R2-D2 (4) + Predator (3), Airen Cracken (19) and Ten Numb (31).

Etahn A'Baht Predator R2-D2 Ten Numb Airen Cracken

So three on three and all of his looking at putting critical hits on my imperial ships with almost every shot.  I really need to keep the principal of take on ship down at the front of my mind for this.  The B-wing cannot dodge for toffee, but can easily be focused and target locked with Airen’s ability combined with Ethan this should be a guaranteed hit every turn.  However he has 8 HP.  Airen is the weakest ship, and also a really powerful one, but he has to shoot to trigger his ability, so that (if i survive) means i will be able to shoot back.  With predator and R2-D2 if i go for Etahn i need to take him out of he will jsut regenerate shields and my time wasted.  I think therefore i need to take on the B-wing or Z-95 to start, and again make the most of my ability to k-turn and use an action.  The next article will determine how i fare.

Thanks for reading and see you soon. 

 

Wave 4 – It’s all about the Phantom…or is it?

At least that is all the forums seem to be talking about at the moment, making lists with Echo, Whisper or the basic guys there is no love for the other Wave 4 Imperial release the TIE defender.

I love this ship, I think it is all from TIE Fighter the computer game it totally immersed me into the world of Star Wars to the extent if me considering spending my hard earned cash on a 386 to play even faster.

One of the first games i loved on the PC

One of the first games i loved on the PC

The TIE defender was the ultimate in flying, made all the other ships look basic in comparison, i have kept that love and hopefully persuading you of that too.

Dodge that Y-Wing

Dodge that Y-Wing

So what is it about the defender well i guess primarily its the cost of the ship.

The basic defender comes in at a whopping 30 points (Onyx at 32 and +2PS), although they are pretty sweet at that. 

Delta Squadron Pilot

Three’s across the board is very good for a small ship, as much fire power as an X-wing and B-wing, dodge of an A-wing and the shields of a Y-wing.  What is not to like?

Well it is more expensive than all of these, and imperials will say you can get three TIE fighters for that one ship which are more survivable and have more attack.

Some benefits, you have an inbuilt target lock rebel pilots know how great this is, on that turn you are out of position or at range three vs a 3 AG ship you can get this up and reap the benefits in later turns.

On top of that many dogfights end up at a point where you lose a turn turning or on a k-turn, this is where these ships and their white maneuver works a treat.  While other ships are stressed and without an action, hopefully your defender is Target locked and focused ready to finish off the opposition!

In the release there were two named pilots 

Colonel Vessery

Colonel Vessery you are reliant here on having target locks on your target so with few Imperial ships with this you are looking at flying some of these

Black Squadron PilotTargeting Computer 

or possibly 

Lambda ST-321

either way it gives Vessery a really nice bonus,with only a Focus required to gain full power shooting on the right target.  Although making him more expensive i like the following card due since i think the defender has a great ability to be a flanker, and as mentioned that K-turn can put you out of firing arcs quite easily.  

 Outmaneuver

the other big benefit is that you can use missiles on him really well,again one of the few chances to get that re-roll on your one shot weapon.

That leaves a pilot that i feel can really mess with the enemy – Rexlar Brath.

Rexler Brath

As a defender you are going to be wanting to make the most of this ability and there are few ways of doing this. One is to make sure you have a target lock on the enemy before shooting, or by having the following upgrade.

Predator

The big issue is that you are relying on your target having no shields, although it does allow you to put some critical hits on the Falcon flown by Chewbacca!

Getting expensive, you can tool him up with a Heavy Laser Cannon for that extra attack at range without giving away the extra defense dice.but you are then looking at a 47 point ship!

Support to Rexler can help make the most of his skills, Darth Vader in his Advanced passing on an action through squad leader, or Captain Jonus and his ability to re-roll secondary attacks.

Squadron Flying

Squad wise, there are options, one i have enjoyed flying is 

Captain Jonus (22), 2 x Delta Squadrons with Heavy laser cannons (HLC) (37 each).  it leaves 4 points which i like on Decoy or Swarm Tactics, i think Decoy is better because of the higher chance of the TIE Bomber taking a Critical dropping his PS, although that would only lower one of the Defenders from 1 to 0 so not a big drop.  This allows a fan favourite – Seismic charges, with Jonus at PS 6 he is moving late in the game and can often see where ships are ending their turn.

Vessery + Outmaneuver (38), Omricon Shuttle with ST-321 and Vader (love this guy for hitting AG4 ships!) (30) this leaves 32 points to spend,which is enough for two more ships of some flavour, or gamble on a High PS pilot like Soontir Fel, or a tooled up Royal Guard.

Finally Rexlar + HLC (44), Vader + Squad Leader (31), Royal Guard Interceptor + Push the Limit (25)

Yes you end up flying tricky 3 ship elite imperial lists, but they all have their place, I have not played enough games to know how they work against all opponents, but I like the “other” wave 4 ship the Imperials can fly.

See you next time, and in the mean time safe flying and avoid those asteroids.

Chris

.

Rebel Scum – X-Wing Tournament

First off its been a while since the tournament but finally I have found a spot to write the blog, Match of the Day on TV family in bed.

The build up to this event was really good, plenty of chat and updates on entrants, leading to 36 people signing up for the event, certainly the biggest event that I have been to for X-wing.

The venue

The venue

With having been on holiday and not having had the chance to play since Patriot games I had thought about a new list but with no practice fell back onto the same list.

Omicron Shuttle with Vader, Gamma Bomber with Concussion Missiles and Seismic Charge, 2 Academy TIES, Turr Phenir with Push the Limit

So without further adieu onto the games.

Game 1

Game one and its the Aces! I was drawn against Cadan who had taken an elite three ship imperial list all with stealth devices…it was going to be hard to hit them, I had to hope that Vader would do his thing.

Game 1 - Cadan Jones

Game 1 – Cadan Jones

So I set up with Vader in the corner in an attempt to keep the Aces in sight for as long as possible, the aces in the other corner seemed to have a plan to try and flank my force.

Vader surveys the Imperial Aces

Vader surveys the Imperial Aces

It was a tricky game this but things helped when an Academy took a pot shot at the Royal Guard at Range 3 through an asteroid…scoring 1 hit…and promptly 6 evade dice later bam bye bye stealth device. With this and more focussed fire the Royal Guard went down, but Turr died in return, but some poor maneuvering saw Soontir Fel hit an asteroid and then Vader took his chance and crushed him. The remainder of the game saw Carnor Jax outflying everyone and in a reverse of the royal guard TIE kept his stealth device all game, despite a critical from Vader.

Carnor Jax dodges another bout of incoming fire

Carnor Jax dodges another bout of incoming fire

I have to say this is my closet game to date in X-wing winning by 65-64.

Game 2

This game saw me draw a double firespray list flown by Matt

Game 2 - Matt Robinson

Game 2 – Matt Robinson

Knowing i could not face off against the superior fire power for long I decided to take out Krassis, but this failed and I fluffed a maneuver causing a failed k-turn on my bomber. What this meant in the long run was that the I only could then shoot Boba and stripped his shields too.

The only highlight for me was eventually (with a single hull remaining) Krassis misjudged a turn and flew off the table!

Krassis flies off the table in an attempt to fly another day.

Krassis flies off the table in an attempt to fly another day.

Still this left Matt the winner with 76-46.

Game 3

So dropping down the tables a bit I faced Paul who was flying Mr Han Solo himself.

Game 3 - Paul Davies

Game 3 – Paul Davies

I felt confident again going into this game and again I wanted to reduce the firepower that Paul could bring on me so with the rookies flying forward I flew everything towards them with Turr distracting Han on the flank.

Han Solo is intercepted by an Imperial fleet

Han Solo is intercepted by an Imperial fleet

With one rookie blow from the sky the entire force flew after Han and with the combined wire power stripped his shields and Vader causing a stunned pilot on Han. With my swarm in front of him it was only a matter of time till his destruction.

Chasing Han

Chasing Han

With the falcon destroyed the rookie was next and I ran out 100-36 winner.

Game 4

So after chatting with a mate Marcus Pitt and his opponent, Martin, whom he had just beaten. Interestingly all three of us had Vader in an Omicron shuttle. So as we finished chatting about how well this ship was doing the draw came up and I was playing Martin.

Game 4 - Martin Hotchkiss

Game 4 – Martin Hotchkiss

So with us both understanding what Vader can do I also knew how important it was to reduce the fire power and so used my academy pilots as they should be used and blocked where I could. Despite the bad turn shown below where I flew Vader onto an asteroid it was the poor flying of the firesprays that let Martin down and a couple of crashes for him later in the game was the downfall for him.

Close quarters flying

Close quarters flying

Once the shuttles were at each others throats I had the fire power to take his down, swiftly followed by one of the Firesprays. Despite my ships being on their last legs I ran out 67-0 winner.

Game 5

After this game I found time to chat to the guy who was on the top table and he was flying Han, and I really wanted to get to play him as my list works well against falcons, but with my early loss it was going to be hard.

So turning up to my table I met Mike, and sure enough he placed a Falcon down in front of me!

Game 5 - Mike Parkinson

Game 5 – Mike Parkinson

So facing Chewbacca and two y-wings I instantly decided to completely ignore the Y-wings and just focus totally on Chewbacca. Even though the y-wings had turrets I did not think that once the Falcon was down they would have the agility to take out the TIE fighters.

Chewie tries to avenge the loss of Han

Chewie tries to avenge the loss of Han

Despite losing Vader he managed to go down fighting and although he could not cause any critical’s on Chewbacca he did a couple of extra points of damage which saw him off. In return even a y-wing had no problems staying on the tail of the shuttle! The only problem for the rebels was they had 4 TIE’s on theirs.

I ran out 100-24 winner.

Game 6

By this time I was getting tired, and there were a few guys all on 4 wins unfortunately I was in last as one of these was a modified win. The draw seemed to suggest Marcus would play another guy we knew from the Warhammer scene Shane Metcalf, but Cadan had been winning too and so as we had already played he drew Marcus and I drew Shane.

Game 6 - Shane Metcalf

Game 6 – Shane Metcalf

So yet again it’s a falcon and Han was piloting it, I had obviously not done enough to kill him before. Shane had been playing this list really well and with two elite pilots with Marksmanship I really had to do something about one of these and fast.

The final approach

Ten Numb flies into the combined firepower of the Imperial fleet

This time it was Ten Numb that drew the firepower of the Imperium and he was blown out the sky in short order in exchange for an Academy TIE.

Not Han again

Not Han again

With my 4 ships against Shane’s one I used Vader to destruction doing as much damage to Han as he could before he was destroyed. Still it was a chase and Han was the deer in the headlights. The Bomber had a target lock from early in the game and the targeting computer had time to compute the optimal shooting pattern. Han tried to finish off the damaged Academy TIE but failed and in the end it was his shots that took the final hull point.

Han finally goes down

Han finally goes down

So the final game was over and it was another big win to me 99-36 and a points total of 23/30.

My results

My results

So we all retired to wait for the final results, all that was know was that “Andy” had won…but seeing as there were tow on the top table which was it…

The wrong Andy got his hands on the medal...temporarily.

The wrong Andy got his hands on the medal…temporarily.

Well it was not this one – unfortunately the organisers had the wrong total and shouted the incorrect surname.

So congratulations to Andy Southern for winning against a big field of competitors and also how he only just pipped Andy Robinson to 1st by a few points killed.

The right Andy wins the event

The right Andy wins the event

I finished a respectable 4th just behind Marcus. We all had 5 wins, but my modified win earlier in the tournament meant I could not catch them.

The full standings for the event are below.

Top half standings

Top half standings

Bottom half standings

Bottom half standings

Lessons Learnt

Well another tournament done and dusted and it’s time for some lessons learnt. First of all I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my opponents, yet again every game a cracker and played in the right spirit of things.

My list flew well yet again and with 10/11 wins across two tournaments it seems it is quite forgiving too. Having said that the game I lost was to a solid list which was flown well and coupled with some mistakes on my part let me down. Cadan with his aces also gave me a run for their money.

The aces make a solid list and I am tempted to fly some of these next time I get a chance to. What it seems though is that the falcon builds seem to really struggle against this build. Three faced and maximum points against all of them. I am yet to face a proper swarm with these guys and I still feel that may the downfall of the list still.

I lost to the twin firespray list and this I should have been able to deal with, I thought that the only opportunity to do this was to focus fire, but I tried to outflank with Turr and this seriusly reduced my fire power, in hindsight he should have been front and central for the initial run on the ships. I think that would have given the extra few hits which would have possibly taken Krassis down.

Any way I came away with another card box and with the number of cards stacking up with all the ships I have this is a great for my storage, in addition all the players there came away with a promo Y-wing card and a Acrylic token.

It was my first trip out to the North West Gaming center and I must say that the place was really well set up for gaming. There was plenty of space around the boards for tokens, cards and elbow room, food amenities and the Element Games shop were all spot on. It was also an easy drive in over the Pennines from Nottingham.

Finally a big thank you to the event organisers and Sai Harris who ran the ship really smoothly I would definitely attend an event run by these guys again.

Thanks for reading, till next time.