Part 1 can be found here.
As a quick recap from the last article: I won my first 2 games. Both were nail-bitingly close. This meant I was in the upper-middle of the pack in terms of Margin of Victory. Not a bad place to be in all honesty. So I was going into my 3rd game with cautious confidence. The last 2 games were a bit too close for my liking so couldn't get too cocky!
Conclave X-Wing Tournament 2015 (continued)
My 3rd game was against Jay and his Imperial Squadron.
This is a very similar list I played against in the Irish Regionals……and lost. However I was confident going in because if you remember at the start of my last article I mentioned that I made changes to my Regionals list. This is the reason why. My list was tweaked to be able to specifically handle Chiraneau and friends.
Asteroids were placed quite symmetrically with a big open corridor in the middle. This was fine with me given that I needed room to get to grips with him while he didn’t care as much with his 360 fire from the Decimator.
Turn 1 I moved straight up with a 4 forward. His Decimator creeped up slowly while Soontir flew the other way to loop back around.
We started to bank towards each other on turn 2.
Here I was able to take advantage of my Engine Upgrade and boosted Boba up. This resulted in both of my Firesprays being able to shoot at Chiraneau. I think I surprised him here as he was probably hoping to engage me the turn after this one.
I unloaded hot laser death at the Decimator and took out his shields. In return he shot at Kath and took out a couple of shields.
This turn was pivotal and I considered my moves carefully. Given that Kath had to move first I moved her up 4 forward with the aim of 1. blocking Soontir if possible and 2. presenting her rear arc to the Decimator. As expected Soontir turned into my formation and pushed the limit to get his cocktail of tokens i.e. 2 focus and 1 evade tokens. The Decimator then looped around right into the firing arc of Kath.
Boba in turn bumped into the back of Kath right in front of the stressed Soontir. Things turned out exactly as I had planned!
In the combat phase Boba shot at Soontir at range 2 giving him another stress token. I think I may have managed to take out his single shield. The important thing was that I gave him another stress token which effectively neutered him for the next turn.
Kath unloaded on the Decimator with her extra dice taking out a few more hull points. In return Jay concentrated fire on Kath taking out her shields and putting a critical on her for good measure.
In the next round I moved Kath up to get as far away as possible given she was damaged but still in range to shoot from her rear arc. The Decimator gave chase.
Soontir used a green hard left 2 to get rid of one stress token. I then did a hard right 2 with Boba and made it with around a millimetre to spare.
Without his usual set of tokens due to the double stress there was nothing he could do when I threw 8 attack dice at him from my Firesprays. Soontir promptly vanished in a cloud of debris.
The game was effectively over. Jay gave a good chase with his Decimator on Kath to try to finish her off. However with Kath always getting an extra dice shooting backwards and Boba being able to quickly catch up with his Engine Upgrade it didn’t take long for me to send Chiraneau back to meet his maker.
Another win! This win was pretty conclusive simply because I built my list specifically to kill this type of elite 2 ship builds. Jay had a mountain to climb even before we set up and thankfully I avoided making stupid mistakes.
With 3 straight wins this put me in the position to play against my evil nemesis from Galway, Sean, who was also coming in with 3 wins.
Sean and I have played each other numerous times at other X-Wing events. I believe I was racking more wins than losses from our previous encounters so I think he was determined to take me out!
Sean was running a version of Biggs walk the dogs.
This was bad. Really bad. I played against the exact same list twice previously and lost both times. B-wings were just hard counters against big ships like Firesprays. Their ample attack dice just gobble up big ships like there is no tomorrow.
Of course I didn’t enter this competition without having a plan to deal with these types of lists. It was just going to be very very difficult!
Asteroids were clumped in the middle. This didn’t matter much as I set up opposite him to joust.
Jousting against a block of B-Wings is usually suicide but my only chance at winning is if I was able to bump his ships and force his ships to forgo his attacks at best or split fire at worst.
Sean set up in the classic Biggs formation that allows him to pull Biggs in at the back of the formation to disrupt enemy fire.
I moved up cautiously. I had to make contact at the right moment. If my timing is off I may end up in front of his formation and get shot to pieces.
Sean moved up slowly and as I feared he started to re-position his formation using barrel rolls. Dang I hate these things!
My original plan is obviously not going to work now. So I went to plan B. Kill Biggs as fast as possible.
I shot Boba up to within range 1 of Biggs while Kath hung back making sure she has arc on Biggs. This put Boba right in the middle of his formation. Pretty dire position but it also means he will effectively be able to re-roll all of his dice thanks to his special pilot ability.
In the combat phase I unloaded 4 attack dice from Boba with re-rolls and 3 Mangler Cannon shots from Kath at Biggs. I managed to take out 2 shields. Uh oh.
In return his formation took a good chunk of shields from Kath and completely stripped all the shields from Boba. Ouch!
In subsequent turns I went back to the blocking game. Boba was near death so I had to make sure I force him to split fire as often as possible.
Biggs was still alive and kicking and regenerating shields every turn thanks to the R5-P9 droid. I was also forced to split fire with Biggs still hovering in my sight.
By putting multiple stresses on Biggs I was able to take him out of the game for a few crucial turns.
We exchange fire and he slowly started taking hull points from both my Firesprays thanks to his Fire Control Systems.
I continued to move up and down in that corridor and tried as much as possible to concentrate fire. I took 2 B-Wings to near death. One was on 1 hull point with a Consol Fire critical i.e. he rolls 1 attack die at the start of each combat phase and blows up if it’s a hit result. The other was on 3 hull points. I may yet pull this off.
However he was beginning to put crits on both Firesprays and in a pivotal turn he caused Blinded Pilot on Boba i.e. the next time I attack I don’t roll any attack dice. I could have taken out 1 B-Wing if Boba was able to fire that turn. In addition, that pesky B-Wing was able to survive 2 turns of Consol Fire without blowing up. The dice gods were not smiling on me this day!
I was eventually able to take out those 2 annoying B-Wings. However by that stage Boba was blown to bits and he still had 2 healthy B-Wings and a fully regenerated Biggs. It was only a matter of time before Kath met her end which came with just under 10 mins left on the clock.
Final game lost!
Pretty disappointing but not entirely surprised! Sean played a perfect game. He flew really smartly forcing me to shoot at Biggs when he was around and bumping me to split fire when he was not. I went back over the game in my head and there was nothing that I could have done to change the outcome of the game. If my dice was better I may have scraped a minor win but nothing more. I was out-flown and out-gunned. Great performance from Sean to win and take 1st place.
Congrats to Sean for coming 1st! 4 wins out of 4. He came, he saw and he conquered! P.S I wouldn't be so easy next time though!
|Sean with his 1st place prize and smug grin|
|Me and Bruce sharing 2nd place position. Handshake was strong and crushingly firm.|
Similar to last year, this tournament was really fun! Everyone I played with was a gentlemen and each game went smoothly with no difficulties whatsoever. This is the main reason why X-Wing is my Number 1 game for competitively plays. Each tourney I go to seems to go off without a hitch.
The games I played were really fun and very close. I could have easily come out of that with 3 losses instead of 1! However I did pretty decent and came join second. So not all bad!
The event was run really well with minimal down time. However if I had one critique it would be that the format was changed from 5 games to 4. I personally preferred playing more games as a general rule. More bang for my Euro. I’m sure they had their reasons to move to 4 games but I found myself sitting around for an hour after my last game waiting for the results. I could have been playing another game! But that’s just my personal preference.
I like to thank Kevin and the rest of the Gathering team for hosting the event. I hope it will continue for many years to come!
I hope you enjoy the report. If I made any mistakes please feel free to drop me a line and I will make the necessary corrections.
Alright lads stay on target and keep the flying casual!