Friday, July 3, 2015

Commander's Guide - X-Wing

This article is part of the Commander's Guide series.

Did someone say BONUS UPDATE?  Because it's bonus update time here at Steel Squadron!  In honor of 4000 visitors, you get not one, but two write-ups in a single weekend!

Well, without further ado, let's cover the Rebel's original starfighter squadron, the X-Wing.

X-Wing

The X-Wing Squadron is the Rebel's default squadron, coming standard with the starter kit.  Though to call the X-Wing Squadron the baseline for other rebel ships misses the point.  The X-Wing comes with the Rebel's strongest anti-squadron dice, at 4 Blue (2 points average).  This gives an X-Wing squadron a halfway decent chance of one-shotting the Imperial standard TIE Fighter, or TIE Interceptor (to be covered later).  In addition, the X-Wing comes with 5 hull, putting it out of range of being one-shot by anything the Imperials could field, short of Vader himself.

The X-Wing does come with an increased cost over its Imperial starter set counterpart, clocking in at 13 points per squadron.  And it is slightly slower - the squadron has a 3 movement value, which means it motors almost the same speed as a ship going Speed 3.

But the X-Wing isn't just about anti-squadron attacks.  It has a few other roles that it fills within the greater collection of Rebel fighters.  It has BOMBER, which puts its 1 Red anti-ship armament at the normal 0.75 average damage, and gives it the ability to resolve critical effects if it hits hull.  Plus it has a 1/8 chance of dumping a 2 point hit onto an enemy ship that didn't feel like engaging the X-Wing with a fighter screen.

But that's not all.  The X-Wing is also capable of ESCORTing other squadrons into the dog fight, forcing an engaged opponent to target the X-Wing instead of the easier target.  By carefully managing your X-Wing's movements, you can utilize ESCORT to split fire between multiple squadrons, keeping your squadrons alive longer, and more importantly, firing longer.

Luke, Generic X-Wing, and Wedge escort the Yavaris into the fight.

Luke Skywalker

The Hero of the Rebellion is best known for blowing up the Death Star with a well placed torpedo, and in Armada he places those torpedoes with precision on enemy ships.  Luke upgrades his Red anti-ship armament for 1 Black, which with BOMBER gives him an average of 1 damage per attack, and a 1/4 chance of 2 damage.  Which he will put directly onto the enemy ship's hull with his special ability.  With a crit effect - pending that 2 damage result.  Alone that is plenty scary, but paired with Dodonna, that is just unfair.  

In case another squadron tries to engage his (and they will!) he sports 2 Brace tokens to take advantage of the X-Wing squadrons natural 5 hull.  And all that for just 20 points.  Isn't Luke worth 1/2 of another Corvette?

Wedge Antilles

If Luke showed off the X-Wing's BOMBER skill, Wedge turns the X-Wing into an enemy squadron killing machine.  When he attacks an enemy squadron which has already activated for the turn, Wedge gets an additional 2 Blue anti-squadron dice, bringing his total to 6 (and average damage to 3!)  This makes Wedge all kinds of dangerous to enemy elite pilots, as he has a real chance of rolling multiple damage and accuracy results.  It also means that Wedge and Dutch are best friends forever, as Dutch can activate an enemy squadron that Wedge has his eye on, setting Wedge up for the knockout punch.

Wedge costs only 19 points, just 6 more than a standard X-Wing squadron, and comes with the same 2 Brace tokens and 1 Black anti-ship dice that Luke does.  With the redundant Brace tokens, his decent chance to do considerable damage, and 5 hull, Wedge can even become a better ESCORT for your more vulnerable squadrons - or a place for heavily damaged squadrons that won their engagements to fall back to.



Well, that's it for this round.  Thank you all for the continued support!  I'm ecstatic to have hit 4000 views in just a month.  What squadrons should we cover next?  Let me know in the comments below!

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8 comments:

  1. I'd like to see an article on the Interceptor and the pros/cons of taking one over a Tie fighter.

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  2. I'd like to see an article on the Interceptor and the pros/cons of taking one over a Tie fighter.

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  3. Not to worry then. TIE Interceptor is on its way very soon.

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  4. may want to reword wedge. He is good against squadrons, not ships

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    1. I just cannot stop making the squadron / ship mistake.

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  5. David "Flengin" HuxleyJanuary 21, 2016 at 5:10 AM

    Hi Biggs

    Keep up the good work, I'm really enjoying this series.

    On the Luke/General Dodonna combo: I think I must be missing something (maybe a faq/errata?). The Dodonna card reads that he only works when a ship attacks, not a squadron. But everyone (been reading through the FFG forums) seems to be taking it as a given that affects Lukes criticals. Have I missed something?

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    1. You're gonna want to read Dodonna again. His card text is: "Before an enemy ship is dealt a faceup damage card, look at the top 4 cards of the damage deck, place 1 on top of the deck and discard the others." He doesn't just work on ship attacks, he works against enemy ships all the time.

      So Luke will work with him. So will crashing into asteroids for that matter, or critical results on Minefields.

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    2. David "Flengin" HuxleyJanuary 22, 2016 at 12:34 AM

      Thanks for the reply Biggs!

      I see my problem now.

      I don't actually have a copy of the card (though that's about to change) and had been working from the previews from the FFG website. The preview of Dodonna linked to the rebel preview page (https://www.fantasyflightgames.com/en/news/2015/1/30/take-command-of-the-rebel-fleet/) is evidently a version that was from their play testing. He costs 25 points and his text reads "When a friendly ship is attacking, before the defender is dealt a face up damage card, look at the top 3 cards of the damage deck, place 1 on top of the deck and discard the others."

      Thanks for your help. That's one mystery cleared up.

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