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Balance of the Force, round 4: Nébal (Scum and Villainy) vs Stuart Confrey (Republic) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Balance of the Force, round 4! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

Balance of the Force is a tournament organised by the Tin Squadron, based in England. There will be six rounds of swiss, one per week. Lists were unlocked for a single day between round 2 and 3. After the swiss, there will be a top 16, and so on.

 

What makes this tournament peculiar and so interesting is that it is extended format, but with specific rules regarding the creation of lists. The main idea is that all pilots are split between three groups, based on their initiative values: the first group encompasses all pilots with initiative 2 or less, the second group is for pilots at initiative 3 or 4, and the third and final group is dedicated to all pilots with initiative 5 or more. Then the rule is that, for each pilot of the first group you play, your list must have a corresponding third group pilot, and vice versa. Group 2 pilots don’t need to have specific counterparts, so you can have as many as you like, and if the list has an odd number of pilots, then obviously the remaining odd pilot must be from the second group. Finally, there must be no more than three pilots of the same chassis.

 

For this fourth round, I have been paired with Stuart, a very nice player from England, who brought the following Republic list:

 

Delta-7 Aethersprite – •Ahsoka Tano – 57 (group 2)

•Ahsoka Tano – “Snips” (43)

•Astromech R4-P (2)

Delta-7B (12)

 

Naboo Royal N-1 Starfighter – •Anakin Skywalker – 50 (group 2)

•Anakin Skywalker – Hero of Naboo (41)

Passive Sensors (2)

Plasma Torpedoes (7)

 

Delta-7 Aethersprite – Jedi Knight – 49 (group 2)

Jedi Knight (37)

Delta-7B (12)

 

Eta-2 Actis – •Shaak Ti – 44 (group 2)

•Shaak Ti – Compassionate Mentor (44)

 

Total: 200/200

 

As for myself, I brought the Scum and Villainy list that you may already have seen in round 3, large ships with those pesky False Transponder Codes:

 

Lancer-class Pursuit Craft – •Asajj Ventress – 75 (group 2)

•Asajj Ventress – Force of Her Own (68)

Shadow Caster (1)

•Zam Wesell (4)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

YV-666 Light Freighter – •Bossk – 69 (group 2)

•Bossk – Fearsome Hunter (60)

•Greedo (1)

•Jabba the Hutt (6)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

M12-L Kimogila Fighter – •Torani Kulda – 55 (group 2)

•Torani Kulda – Rodian Freelancer (48)

False Transponder Codes (2)

Proton Rockets (5)

 

Total: 199/200

 

Now to the game.

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Defeat for the Scum and Villainy, 162-71… Well, me being 3-0 until now was obviously some kind of error, so back to normalcy, I guess! Well played, Stuart!

 

I didn’t feel confident from the beginning, just seeing Stuart’s list. One thing was that all his pilots were Force users, which is always powerful; the thing is, I can have all the False Transponder Codes in the world (and I kind of do with Jabba the Hutt), I can’t jam those. Plus all those pilots have great to excellent maneuverability (of course they do), and a great action economy, partly through the use of Force, but also due to special abilities, the most key ones being probably Ahsoka Tano’s and Shaak Tis; the latter allows for focus and evade tokens to remain, therefore allowing other actions, especially repositioning; and in his weird way, Baby Anakin Skywalker combines all those qualities with Full Throttle and its “free barrel roll and maybe one more” ability. Delta-7B Aethersprites can obviously hit like bricks, but the Naboo could as well through Plasma Torpedoes, who would always get through my low agility ships (for the exception, maybe, of Asajj Ventress). And I feared what would happen when they would go behind my ships; not necessary such an issue for the Lancer, but Torani Kulda and especially Bossk would be in great danger… Now I had my strong points, I guess: prohibiting a lock here and there through False Transponder Codes could certainly be useful, Shadow Caster could be as destructive as ever, landing enemy ships on obstacles and/or placing them in Torani’s bullseye or precisely where Bossk would want them to be before attacking with Greedo and his full frontal arc… Maybe Zam Wesell would allow me one or two bonus attacks, also.

 

Initiative was a bit tricky. I chose to go first, because, well, my ships are not exactly arc-dodgers, and I hoped to have the ability to block and perform actions, but that wasn’t all that clear, for there were anyway two I3 ships in front of me. But there was also Greedo’s charge to have in mind…

 

I chose to deploy in the opposite corner of Stuart’s Aethersprites. They would not joust, and I thought I had more room to maneuver and react to Stuart’s moves the other way.

 

Anyway, first engagement was pretty harsh for me, although that was to be expected: Bossk took about everything, and I lost half of him, which is a lot, on the first attacks, whereas I did about nothing, Asajj Ventress and Torani Kulda being a bit too far.

 

However, the second engagement went way better than I expected (and Stuart as well). Shadow Caster!!! It was worth spending those Force tokens (yeah, I had some too!), but I was obviously very lucky there. First, the Jedi Knight took heavy damage and a tractor token; as I thought he was in Torani’s bullseye, I hesitated before moving him, but landing him on the rock was the best option: if I couldn’t destroy him, at least that would be one less attack on Stuart’s side. But Torani blew up the Aethersprite easily; that allowed Bossk to shoot at another target, who was Shaak Ti; Greedo and Bossk doing their things combined, the Actis took two damage, clinging at one hull only, and that was half of the ship! Seeing all that, I started to believe I had a chance after all…

 

But I was not in the best position. I kept bumping, which prohibited me to do any actions, including target locks able to jam through restored False Transponder Codes, a barrel roll for Torani Kulda, or a focus action so that the same would be able to use her Proton Rockets (although I didn’t really believe that would happen, Stuart’s ships being aware of the threat and having many options to barrel roll, especially). And I had almost no room to maneuver with Bossk, so he would die very soon. Torani could have escaped the trap and score some points, but the 4K I tried was a bad move, Ahsoka being there to make her bump and get a stress. Only Asajj could escape. I though about doing a 5K with her early in the game, but I feared she would leave the map: 5K with a large ship covers a frightening distance… and I thought it wasn’t worth the risk. Maybe I was wrong, and if that maneuver had succeeded, I would have been in a better position, the Lancer being able to shoot with its front arc and use Shadow Caster once again…

 

Anyway, Bossk died, and Torani soon followed. It was Asajj against three Jedi, and, well, that was game. With too many attacks relying only on the Lancer’s turret arc, I couldn’t hope to do any damage to all those Jedi, loaded with Force, focus and evade tokens. Maybe I should have tried the lucky shot on Shaak Ti, she had only one hull left after all, but… Two red dices against, most of the time, three at best, more often than not four or maybe five green dices, with all those defensive tokens and Force? I couldn’t really hope to do anything. That was close, sometime, but I didn’t score any hit after that lucky first engagement. Anakin lost a shield while moving into a rock (thanks, rock!), and that was it. Stuart however managed to take half of Asajj before the bell rang.

 

And so, defeat… Good game, Stuart! Still undefeated! I wish you the best of luck for the remainder of the tournament!

 

So, that’s 3-1 for me. That’s already way better than I expected…

 

We’ll see next week what happens in round 5… See you soon!

 

 

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Balance of the Force, round 3: Matija Mandurov (Resistance) vs Nébal (Scum and Villainy) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Balance of the Force, round 3! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

Balance of the Force is a tournament organised by the Tin Squadron, based in England. There will be six rounds of swiss, one per week. Lists were unlocked for a single day between round 2 and 3, so just before this very game. After the swiss, there will be a top 16, and so on.

 

What makes this tournament peculiar and so interesting is that it is extended format, but with specific rules regarding the creation of lists. The main idea is that all pilots are split between three groups, based on their initiative values: the first group encompasses all pilots with initiative 2 or less, the second group is for pilots at initiative 3 or 4, and the third and final group is dedicated to all pilots with initiative 5 or more. Then the rule is that, for each pilot of the first group you play, your list must have a corresponding third group pilot, and vice versa. Group 2 pilots don’t need to have specific counterparts, so you can have as many as you like, and if the list has an odd number of pilots, then obviously the remaining odd pilot must be from the second group. Finally, there must be no more than three pilots of the same chassis.

 

For this third round, I have been paired with Matija, a very nice player from Croatia, who brought the following Resistance list:

 

T-70 X-Wing – •Poe Dameron – 77 (group 3)

•Poe Dameron – Trigger-Happy Flyboy (62)

Integrated S-Foils (0)

•Overdrive Thruster (8)

Heroic (1)

R4 Astromech (2)

Ion Torpedoes (4)

 

T-70 X-Wing – •Jessika Pava – 51 (group 2)

•Jessika Pava – The Great Destroyer (51)

Integrated S-Foils (0)

 

T-70 X-Wing – Blue Squadron Rookie – 41 (group 1)

Blue Squadron Rookie (41)

Integrated S-Foils (0)

 

Resistance Transport Pod – •Rose Tico – 30 (group 2)

•Rose Tico – Earnest Engineer (25)

•C-3PO (5)

 

Total: 199/200

 

As for myself, I brought mostly the Scum and Villainy list that you may already have seen in round 1 and 2, large ships with those pesky False Transponder Codes. Two small changes only: Predator on Torani Kulda went away, so that I could board Greedo on Bossk (which makes my list 199 points now instead of 200):

 

Lancer-class Pursuit Craft – •Asajj Ventress – 75 (group 2)

•Asajj Ventress – Force of Her Own (68)

Shadow Caster (1)

•Zam Wesell (4)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

YV-666 Light Freighter – •Bossk – 69 (group 2)

•Bossk – Fearsome Hunter (60)

•Greedo (1)

•Jabba the Hutt (6)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

M12-L Kimogila Fighter – •Torani Kulda – 55 (group 2)

•Torani Kulda – Rodian Freelancer (48)

False Transponder Codes (2)

Proton Rockets (5)

 

Total: 199/200

 

Now to the game.

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the Scum and Villainy, 200-107! It started very well for me, but later turns were quite frightening, actually… Well played, Matija, thanks for the great game, and even to that unkillable Jessika Pava!

 

What did I think of the matchup? I would say it was… balanced? Both lists had their strong points. On Matija’s side, well, one should never underestimate the versatility, endurance (seven health points including three shields with agility 2!), and aggression of T-70 X-Wings, even a single Blue Squadron Rookie with no upgrade but the free Integrated S-Foils. Poe Dameron (Trigger-Happy Flyboy, the “old” Poe) is obviously a very good pilot, with his “Poe the Limit” ability, and he was especially mobile in that configuration, with R4 Astromech and Overdrive Thruster, a card I had never faced before, I think, which allowed him to do some crazy moves. And of course Heroic is that little bonus that can turn many things in favor of the terrorists’ faction… The Resistance jouster/ace could be very destructive for my ships, and especially Bossk, because, shooting first, he had the best chances of turning Greedo against me. But I think I dreaded Jessika Pava as much and maybe even more, for as long as she has friends around her, she has all the rerolls she needs. In a way, Rose Tico on the Resistance Transport Pod played the same game, having potentially even more rerolls with her special ability not relying on a charge, and carrying C-3PO for some coordinate shenanigans that would make her gain a calculate token anyway. Not bad for such a tiny ship! On the other hand, my big guys had a lot of health points to chew through, False Transponder Codes for days with Jabba the Hutt, some other control with Asajj Ventress (especially the ability to give a tractor token with the Shadow Caster title), Torani who always likes to get targets in her bullseye, and the full frontal arc of Bossk, that I hoped would be even more threatening now that Greedo had joined the party.

 

I was very cautious, very slow, at the beginning. I knew Poe, although he was deployed with Matija’s other ships, could go and flank me rapidly, especially with Overdrive Thrusters, but my main target, ideally, would be the Blue Squadron Rookie, probably the easiest enemy ship to kill, and a good way to affect both Rose and Jessika’s rerolls.

 

When the first engagement came close, the idea was to send Bossk in the front, with Asajj in the back, and Torani waiting her turn, maybe reacting to the flanking Poe, who indeed went after Torani, without doing anything, but the retaliation shot was as ineffective. Asajj’s red dices were terrible, but she managed to hit the Rookie anyway, and tractor him on a gas cloud: he was strained and therefore had no green dices when Bossk attacked him, and everybody's favorite Space Lizard got half of his points, inflicting Weapons Failure as well. The YV-666 lost all his shields in the action, but I think the trade was worth it.

 

Now my maneuvers for the next turn were limited, and there would necessarily be some bump. It took me forever to make a decision, and I’m very sorry for that… The Rookie first made a Koiogran turn to get behind most of my ships. Bossk did his battering ram thing, but bumped on Jessika Pava, then Asajj bumped on him, and Torani bumped on the Rookie. Not good, right? But with a twist… for I was in position to do against Rose exactly what I did to the Rookie the previous turn: Asajj hit the Resistance Transport Pod, tractored it on the gas cloud with Shadow Caster, Rose got a strain token, and Bossk killed her: first casualty of the game! In the meantime, Poe got Torani’s shields, but the Kimogila was able to attack Jessika Pava; it did nothing to her, but, having performed an attack, Torani now inflicted one automatic damage, with her special ability, on the Rookie who was in her bullseye.

 

(On a sidenote, at this moment of the game, you might have heard me saying I thought I accidentally deleted an unknown token, because I heard the sound of the void dumpster after a selection, but I didn’t, actually, or, more precisely, the deleted token was not on the game mat.)

 

I was in a pretty good position after this turn, certainly better than I expected when all my ships bumped: I lead 51-0 at that stage. Bossk would need to turn, probably having no shot this turn even with his full frontal arc, but Asajj was well place to do her 5K thing. Plus Torani could do a 4K and hope to have the Blue Squadron Rookie in her bullseye and therefore automatically kill him as long as she had an attack on anybody. Actually, Matija was aware of that, as he said, but tried his luck and chose not to boost with the T-70 X-Wing, repairing Weapons Failure instead: that was a relief! When Poe moved, he was in bullseye as well, but now Matija knew that, and the Trigger-Happy Flyboy boosted; yet he was still in Torani’s arc, she could attack him, and therefore the Rookie would automatically die during this turn. Before that, though, Poe took half of Bossk with a Direct Hit!. Yet Asajj spending her two Force charges managed to hit Poe and tractored him, so Torani could take half of him and destroy the Blue Squadron Rookie in a single shot; second Resistance ship blown up, and the terrorists’ leader was not in the best shape! The score was now 110-35 in my favor…

 

Bossk then turned again, hoping to have a shot this time, but I did once again the same mistake with Asajj as in a previous round: she was stressed after her 5K, yet I did a speed 1 maneuver with her, and they are all white on her dial… Not the end of the world, her placement was good, but no action this turn. My second usual mistake with her was to use her ability on Poe, who obviously took a stress instead of losing his focus token; I had no Force left after that, and that was stupid on my part… She killed Poe even without Force, but then Jessika Pava got half of her points on another Direct Hit!.

 

Now it was JESSIKA PAVA AGAINST THE WORLD… and the weird stuff began. I won’t go into detail for what happened after that, it wouldn’t make much sense, but let’s say I did everything wrong from now on, from exposing Bossk too much (and yes, he died) to sending Asajj way too far for way too long, while Torani was heavily limited in her maneuvers against THE GREAT DESTROYER. I probably had won the game at this stage, but Jess could still make a lot of points: she wouldn’t get points on my two remaining ships, I guess, but there was a very real chance that she at least killed Asajj before the end. And Jessika herself seemed unkillable, even without any reroll. I saw my margin of victory shrinking and shrinking… but in the end I finally got her, not giving up half points on Asajj, and Matija’s list was no more.

 

And so, victory! Good game, Matija, I suggest you give a medal to JESSIKA PAVATHE GREAT DESTROYER, she has well earned it, and I wish you the best of luck for the remainder of the tournament!

 

I’m 3-0 right now. That’s weird…

 

It will be round 4 next week, we’ll see what happens… See you soon!

 

 

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Balance of the Force, round 2: Loch (Scum and Villainy) vs Nébal (Scum and Villainy) (Battle Report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Balance of the Force, round 2! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

Balance of the Force is a tournament organised by the Tin Squadron, based in England. There will be six rounds of swiss, one per week, with the possibility to change lists for one day only, between rounds 2 and 3. After the swiss, there will be a top 16, and so on.

 

What makes this tournament peculiar and so interesting is that it is extended format, but with specific rules regarding the creation of lists. The main idea is that all pilots are split between three groups, based on their initiative values: the first group encompasses all pilots with initiative 2 or less, the second group is for pilots at initiative 3 or 4, and the third and final group is dedicated to all pilots with initiative 5 or more. Then the rule is that, for each pilot of the first group you play, your list must have a corresponding third group pilot, and vice versa. Group 2 pilots don’t need to have specific counterparts, so you can have as many as you like, and if the list has an odd number of pilots, then obviously the remaining odd pilot must be from the second group. Finally, there must be no more than three pilots of the same chassis.

 

For this second round, I have been paired with Loch, a very nice player from Italy, who brought the following very scummy Scum and Villainy list:

 

JumpMaster 5000 – •Tel Trevura – 64 (group 2)

•Tel Trevura – Escape Artist (44)

•4-LOM (2)

Ion Cannon (6)

Feedback Array (3)

Static Discharge Vanes (6)

Intimidation (3)

 

HWK-290 Light Freighter – •Dace Bonearm – 53 (group 2)

•Dace Bonearm – Outer Rim Mercenary (31)

Moldy Crow (16)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

M3-A Interceptor – •Quinn Jast – 43 (group 2)

•Quinn Jast – Fortune Seeker (31)

Proton Rockets (5)

Afterburners (4)

Crack Shot (3)

 

M3-A Interceptor – •Genesis Red – 40 (group 2)

•Genesis Red – Tansarii Point Crime Lord (31)

Autoblasters (3)

Afterburners (5)

Marksmanship (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

As for myself, I brought my Scum and Villainy list that you may already have seen in round 1, large ships with those pesky False Transponder Codes which didn’t become costlier during the last update, weirdly enough:

 

Lancer-class Pursuit Craft – •Asajj Ventress – 75 (group 2)

•Asajj Ventress – Force of Her Own (68)

Shadow Caster (1)

•Zam Wesell (4)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

YV-666 Light Freighter – •Bossk – 68 (group 2)

•Bossk – Fearsome Hunter (60)

•Jabba the Hutt (6)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

M12-L Kimogila Fighter – •Torani Kulda – 57 (group 2)

•Torani Kulda – Rodian Freelancer (48)

False Transponder Codes (2)

Proton Rockets (5)

Predator (2)

 

Total: 200/200

 

Now to the game.

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the Scum and Villainy! Well, yeah, obviously… but I mean my Scums: 153-63! Quite a weird game, but also a fun one. Well played, Loch!

 

His list was indeed so scummy, and I didn’t really know what to think of the matchup. I probably didn’t understand all of the shenanigans of that list, although some were quite telling. There would be a lot of ions in this game, and the fact that I ran two large ships and one medium one didn’t really protect me against ionization, because Dace Bonearm, although only once in three turns, could add more ion tokens to those inflicted by Tel Trevura in order to automatically ionize any of my ships. And the JumpMaster had more than one option for weird control and/or damage effects, with 4-LOM, Static Discharge Vanes and Feedback Array, so many options actually that I couldn’t summarize them all right now. But Loch also played two M3-A Interceptors which could become kind of heavy hitters, with the dreaded Autoblasters and Proton Rockets, both having Afterburners for some close assault (getting any of my big fellows in bullseye would certainly not be an issue). And I didn’t get Genesis Red’s trick with Dace Bonearm flying the Moldy Crow until Loch had done it: a nice one! I must confess, by the way, that I don’t think I had ever faced, and even less played, three of the four pilots run by Loch (the only exception being Dace), even if I knew how much the Scyks can be nuisances… I had some advantages, though: a lot of health points, some control as well with Asajj Ventress and Shadow Caster, plus obviously False Transponder Codes reloaded with Jabba the Hutt, and some range with Bossk’s full frontal arc and Asajj’s turret. And, same as ever, nobody wants to land on Torani Kulda’s bullseye (Asajj being able and willing to help there).

 

As it happened, I was first player, and that was good, I think: I wanted to get actions and force Loch’s ships to bump, especially on Bossk, who I tend to consider basically as some battering ram, his full frontal arc being a real blessing.

 

But this time I didn’t want to go too far too soon with everybody’s favorite Space Lizard. Therefore, when it was time for the first engagement of the game, I decided to make a red stop and allow Torani to go farther, while Asajj was about to flank (which she’s weirdly pretty good at). Although she had to lock Quinn Jast, in order to jam him, because no one else was in range when she moved, her target was actually Genesis Red, because I thought she could hit him and then tractor him through Shadow Caster so that he landed in Torani’s bullseye, although watching the game afterwards, maybe he wouldn’t have… Anyway, without the target lock and because there were too many green dices and green tokens the other side, that oh so cunning plan absolutely didn’t work. Yet Torani managed to take half of Genesis Red, so OK I guess? But then Tel Trevura shot at Torani, and, with the help of Dace Bonearm’s ability, my Kimogila was ionized, and not in the best spot. By the end of the turn, Loch didn’t manage to take half of her, but that was close.

 

And then the weird stuff began. I couldn’t do anything for my ionized Kimogila, although the Koiogran turn by Quinn Jast allowed Torani to bump on him, which was perfect, and that left some room for more important maneuvers: on my right flank, Bossk banked right, which would land him on a gas cloud, but the idea was to impact Loch’s maneuvers for at least two turns regarding Tel Trevura and Dace Bonearm (who didn’t turn his turret, and that would be very important the following turns, preventing any attacks on his part) and to a lesser extent Genesis Red as well; and on my left flank, Asajj turned right, full speed, in order to go farther than Quinn Jast and Torani: she bumped on Genesis Red (while evading the gas cloud, and that was close), but I was OK with that, she had great target opportunities, and a perfect corridor for a 5K the following turn. And all Loch’s I4 ships bumped, therefore, which was ideal. Sadly, both Tel Trevura and Genesis Red defended very well without any dice modifications: Torani only took one shield on the JumpMaster 5000 and that was it! Very disappointing. Loch’s attacks were more efficient, and he took half of Torani Kulda, although he didn’t manage to ionize Asajj, luckily for my plan, and now Zam Wesell’s charges were reloaded.

 

Asajj could then do her speed 5 Koiogran turn, while Bossk purposely stayed where he was with a blue maneuver bumping on Dace and gaining no strain for the gas cloud. Torani’s maneuvers were limited because of Stunned Pilot, and I didn’t want to risk overlapping the gas cloud; not an issue, she was ideally placed to blast Quinn Jast, locking and jamming him. As expected, Dace couldn’t go farther than Bossk, then Genesis bumped on the HWK, and Tel Trevura bumped on the Scyk: I certainly hoped to do more damage this time! But Bossk and Asajj’s attacks on Genesis Red were quite poor… Yet it was enough to destroy the M3-A, first casualty of the game. Torani almost one-shot the second M3-A after that, but Quinn Jast managed to survive on one hull. Anyway, I scored some points this way, taking the lead. Zombie Genesis Red then attacked Asajj, triggering Zam Wesell, but of course I wouldn’t spend her charges to make a bonus attack on a ship that was already dead…

 

Next turn, I chose once again to be careful with Torani, and not risk overlapping an obstacle with Stunned Pilot; I wouldn’t be able to shoot, I knew that, but I had reloaded her charge on False Transponder Codes with Jabba the Hutt, so she could target lock Dace Bonearm and jam him (which proved useful later). Bossk once again stayed where he was, also gaining one strain this time. As an idiot, however, I managed to forget that Asajj was stressed after her 5K… My white maneuver landed her where I wanted, not bumping on Dace (that was really, really close!), but no action anyway for the witch… Not that bad though: Dace bumping once again on Bossk, she could attack him while he was range 1 and not modified at all! And then Tel Trevura bumped on Dace: he could shoot my large ships, but Bossk could attack him as well… What a mess in the center of the game mat! Asajj removed Dace’s shields, and tractored the HWK, but obviously I didn’t move him, which would have allowed him to shoot at Bossk… who shot himself at Tel Trevura, gaining half points. The JumpMaster ionized Bossk after that… and Asajj as well with those weird ion shenanigans!

 

Both my large ships were facing each other, and as they would move before Dace, both would bump on him, while Torani kept careful, having regained once again her False Transponder Codes’ charge. Dace finally got behind Bossk and had the opportunity to rotate his mobile arc. Tel Trevura, though, bumped on Asajj (maybe a mistake when setting the dial?), which allowed Bossk to kill him… or not, because of his zombie ability: he would have the opportunity to shoot back at Bossk, and would then go in reserve, reappearing at the beginning of the next planning phase on Loch’s side of the game mat. Dace however took half of Bossk, and then Tel Trevura chose not to attack, doing instead one automatic damage on Asajj with Feedback Array (Tel Trevura being “already dead”, it cost him nothing). Quinn Jast didn’t manage to take half of her, but that was close, and Bossk as well as Torani were severely damaged as well, still having four hull each, but with one green dice at best, they could be destroyed on a lucky shot. I had the lead (94-63), but bad maneuvering and target choice the following (and last) turn could cost me heavily. Where Loch would make Tel Trevura reappear could be crucial.

 

He chose to redeploy the JumpMaster 5000 close to Torani. I had that information before setting my dials, of course, and had to think twice about all that. Bossk went for Tel Trevura, which he had good chances to kill, having locked him. Torani being stressed, she could at best go after Quinn Jast, who luckily bumped on Asajj (no focus token to launch Proton Rockets, that was something, although Loch would actually make a mistake here, thinking that he was the one who had Autoblasters, and nope, that was Genesis Red; what a relief!). But Asajj was the one I was not sure of: she had the opportunity to take half of Dace, who was still stressed, or rotating the turret in the rear arc and try to kill Quinn Jast, if Torani didn’t manage to kill him, before he could engage and take half of her, although I would roll only two attack dices in that case. I decided to turn my turret just in case, but I was really not sure about that move… Luckily, almost everything went in my favor during this last turn! That didn’t seem that way at first, since Torani didn’t kill Quinn Jast clinging on one hull. Yet Bossk finally destroyed Tel Trevura, or should I say he destroyed him again; after that, I finally chose to go after Dace with Asajj, spending Force… and got half of the HWK! While Loch didn’t score any points during that last turn, and that was real bad luck…

 

And so, victory! Good game, Loch, and I wish you the best of luck for the remainder of the tournament!

 

I’m 2-0 right now. That won’t last, obviously…

 

Between rounds 2 and 3, lists are unlocked for one day. But I will mainly keep this Scum list, which I find very funny to play, with only two changes: one card will go, another will come…

 

Then round 3 next week, we’ll see what happens… See you soon!

 

 

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Balance of the Force, round 1: Brian Collis (Rebel Alliance) vs Nébal (Scum and Villainy) (Battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Balance of the Force, round 1! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

Balance of the Force is a tournament organised by the Tin Squadron, based in England. There will be six rounds of swiss, one per week, with the possibility to change lists for one day only, between rounds 2 and 3. After the swiss, there will be a top 16, and so on.

 

What makes this tournament peculiar and so interesting is that it is extended format, but with specific rules regarding the creation of lists. The main idea is that all pilots are split between three groups, based on their initiative values: the first group encompasses all pilots with initiative 2 or less, the second group is for pilots at initiative 3 or 4, and the third and final group is dedicated to all pilots with initiative 5 or more. Then the rule is that, for each pilot of the first group you play, your list must have a corresponding third group pilot, and vice versa. Group 2 pilots don’t need to have specific counterparts, so you can have as many as you like, and if the list has an odd number of pilots, then obviously the remaining odd pilot must be from the second group. Finally, there must be no more than three pilots of the same chassis.

 

For this first round, I have been paired with Brian Collis, a very nice player from the USA, who brought the following Rebel Alliance list:

 

HWK-290 Light Freighter – •Jan Ors – 57 (group 3)

•Jan Ors – Espionage Expert (41)

Moldy Crow (16)

 

Auzituck Gunship – •Wullffwarro – 56 (group 2)

•Wullffwarro – Wookiee Chief (53)

Hull Upgrade (3)

 

BTL-A4 Y-Wing – •“Dutch” Vander – 55 (group 2)

•“Dutch” Vander – Gold Leader (40)

R4 Astromech (2)

Concussion Bombs (4)

Ion Torpedoes (4)

Ion Cannon Turret (5)

 

Sheathipede-class Shuttle – •AP-5 – 32 (group 1)

•AP-5 – Escaped Analyst Droid (32)

 

Total: 200/200

 

As for myself, and it may come as a surprise for you two guys who follow those battle reports, but I brought neither an Imperial nor a First Order list… I went for a Scum and Villainy list! A faction I have almost never played, and the last time I tried was about two years ago… Large ships, which I usually don't run, with those pesky False Transponder Codes which will likely become costlier sooner than later:

 

Lancer-class Pursuit Craft – •Asajj Ventress – 75 (group 2)

•Asajj Ventress – Force of Her Own (68)

Shadow Caster (1)

•Zam Wesell (4)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

YV-666 Light Freighter – •Bossk – 68 (group 2)

•Bossk – Fearsome Hunter (60)

•Jabba the Hutt (6)

False Transponder Codes (2)

 

M12-L Kimogila Fighter – •Torani Kulda – 57 (group 2)

•Torani Kulda – Rodian Freelancer (48)

False Transponder Codes (2)

Proton Rockets (5)

Predator (2)

 

Total: 200/200

 

Now, before we launch the game, there is one thing that must be discussed. False Transponder Codes is a great illicit upgrade card, but the problem is that many interactions with this card are a little bit weird, and without FFG (or AMG?) giving straight answers regarding those issues, all we can do is speculate and agree on common terms. It seems that the rule is now that by locking an obstacle you don’t spend your charge, for example.

 

But the main issue regarding this specific game with Brian was the interaction between False Transponder Codes and “Dutch” Vander. At first I guessed the answer was that “Dutch” locking a ship with False Transponder Codes would be jammed immediately, but would nevertheless be considered to “have locked”, therefore allowing an allied ship to lock the same target, now deprived of its precious False Transponder Codes’ charge. But I asked the French community just in case, and it seems it was indeed more complicated than that. I’ve been suggested to apply the following ruling by Maui, judge for the Kyber Cup, who also posted it on the Gold Squadron Podcast Discord (I paraphrase his example, which involved Hera Syndulla and Jango Fett, so that it fits Brian’s list and mine); what is of the utmost importance is who is the first player.

 

If I, as the Scum player, have the first player status, this is what happens:

“Dutch” locks, let’s say Bossk; [False Transponder Codes] enters the ability queue, followed by ["Dutch"], because the Scum player is the first player.

• [False Transponder Codes] resolves, and “Dutch” is jammed.

• A Rebel ship, let’s say Wullffwarro, acquires a lock on Bossk.

To put it simply, if I were the first player, “Dutch” wouldn’t keep is own lock, but he could allow Wullffwarro to lock anyway. And that big Wookiee is much more frightening…

 

But it is different if the Rebel player is the first player:

“Dutch” locks Bossk; ["Dutch"] enters the queue, followed by [False Transponder Codes], because the Rebel player is the first player

• ["Dutch"] resolves to give Wullffwarro a lock on Bossk; this adds a second copy of [False Transponder Codes] to the front of the ability queue; the ability queue now reads: [False Transponder Codes 2] → [False Transponder Codes 1].

• [False Transponder Codes 2] resolves first, jamming Wullffwarro.

• There is not any more a charge on False Transponder Codes, so the other copy of the ability does not resolve.

This time, as you see, it is “Dutch” who keeps his own lock on Bossk, whereas Wullffwarro doesn’t lock the bounty hunter. And that is a big difference…

 

Is this ruling the good one? I guess for now it is… but there’s nothing official to it. Anyway, Brian and I discussed the issue before the game, and agreed to follow this ruling.

 

Now to the game.

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the Scum and Villainy: 173-172! Now that was a close one… but also a very brutal, very fun game! Well played, Brian!

 

Now Brian’s list was all about the Very Big And Very Hairy Wookiee Wullffwarro. This guy hits like a brick as soon as he is damaged, which means already from the beginning, since, as in a previous battle report on this blog, one of “Dutch” Vander’s functions in this list would be to drop a Concussion Bomb first turn so that the Auzituck’s ability would be activated immediately (Wullffwarro having a Hull Upgrade, that automatic damage was somewhat nullified, and then all “Dutch” had to do was take the reload action; if he didn’t, he would be compelled to drop Concussion Bombs during the following turns, which would truly be a waste). Then Wullffwarro could reinforce himself and focus each turn, if coordinated by AP-5, and “Dutch” could give him free target locks; Finally Jan Ors would stress herself in order to allow the Wookiee to roll again one more attack dice. Which means, at range 1, six dices, double modified! Yep, it’s all about this Big, Hairy Guy… Of course all Star Wars nerds know that the sensible thing to do would be to let the Wookiee win, but we’re not here to be sensible, right? That said, “Dutch” wasn’t to be taken lightly neither, for his Concussion Bombs would be very dangerous for my large base ships, and if his ion shenanigans wouldn’t in most cases ionize my large bases, they could very well be an eloquent demonstration of what people mean by “death from a thousand cuts”: I simply wouldn’t roll enough dices to evade the damage…

 

My list had its own merits, though. False Transponder Codes, reloaded by Jabba the Hutt, would mean that at least some target locks by Brian would fail, and, the other way, I could target rebel ships in order to jam them, and especially Wullffwarro, the main menace. Plus I had other options for control with Asajj Ventress: stress with her own ability, and a tractor token here and there through the Shadow Caster title. And she works really well with Torani Kulda: nobody wants to be in the Kimogila’s bullseye, especially without any green token, for she can hurt almost as badly as Wullffwarro, although not so regularly. And then, once in a while, Zam Wesell would allow Asajj to make a bonus attack… plus all my ships had a three attack dices value, while in the meantime Bossk’s full frontal arc and Asajj’s turret allowed me to cover arcs on a pretty extensive scale.

 

Both our lists were 200 points. We rolled for the first player, I won, and chose to be the first player. A debatable choice, mainly because of the ruling regarding “Dutch” Vander and False Transponder Codes… Had I given Brian first player status, it would have been a little bit more difficult for Wullffwarro to get target locks and therefore to be double modified… But, at the same time, I preferred to have the ability to block and choose who I would jam with False Transponder Codes. What do you think? I’m interested.

 

The first big commitment of the game was, in compliance with what I just wrote, when I chose to go very fast with Bossk and Asajj in order to block as many of Brian’s ships as possible. My point was especially to forbid both “Dutch” and Wullffwarro to have actions of their own, although AP-5 could coordinate. “Dutch” didn’t bump, sadly, but it worked pretty well otherwise, I guess, the Wookiee being jammed and therefore not able to gain a lock anyway. I took half of the Wookiee but didn’t do as many damage as I hoped though (especially because I rolled only three dices for Asajj when I was range one on Jan, stupid me!), and took some, because Jan Ors managed not to bump and… I had forgotten that the Wookiee had a full frontal arc, just as Bossk did. Silly Nébal... Then Torani Kulda was a bit too far, having bumped the two previous turns, something I should fix in future games, and Wullffwarro evaded her pretty well.

 

“Dutch” was in a good position to drop a Concussion Bomb, which would affect all of my ships, but also Wullffwarro (we had to check ranges manually, that was maybe not that accurate, I wondered about Jan, but I think we got it through). I realised, watching the game again, I had forgotten to give Torani Kulda a stress token for having overlapped a debris cloud during this turn… I’m really sorry, Brian! But I placed her there for two reasons: hoping that Wullffwarro would bump on her (which happened) or otherwise that she could have the Wookiee in her bullseye. Yet Asajj and especially Bossk’s attacks were very disappointing (my lizard being crippled by Weapons Failure at the worst moment, because of course he was). Torani was a bit better, inflicting damage to AP-5. But then the Big Hairy Wookiee was Really Angry: although he was not double modified, he rolled six dices against Bossk, and obtained three hits, three crits! My Space Lizard rolled one evade, but that was not enough: first casualty of this game, and a big one! Which also meant that Jabba was gone (even if Asajj and Torani both had their False Transponder Codes’ charge at this time). And then AP-5 with a lucky shot got half of Asajj… Nevertheless, it was now time for Zam Wesell to attack back at the former imperial droid, and she got a Direct Hit! AP-5 exploded, second casualty of this brutal turn. But Brian had clearly taken the lead by removing Bossk and taking half of Asajj, the tiny Sheathipede was no match for this loss…

 

The next Concussion Bomb would affect both Asajj and Wullffwarro, the latter clinging on one hull left after that. I had to turn my turret to have a shot at him. Before that, Jan already heavily damaged my Lancer, and it was almost certain that Wullffwarro would kill her; but she attacked the Wookiee, and got him; then he got her… Once again, two ships destroyed in a single turn, one for each side! But Brian increased his lead… although Torani managed to get half of Jan Ors, and inflicted her Damaged Engines, which would be important very soon.

 

Because Brian forgot he had suffered this crit! The planned maneuver became red whereas Jan was already stressed because of Asajj; the HWK therefore had to do a stress maneuver, which was ideal for Torani, who finished Jan; and now I had taken back the lead… for two points only. Close game!

 

So it was Torani vs “Dutch”… My Kimogila could hit harder, but the Y-Wing was more maneuverable as he was equipped with an R4 Astromech; it also had the other advantage of its ion weapons: rolling three or four dices, when I had one green dice, two at best, he would almost necessarily score the first damage on Torani, and could hope to ionize her once in a while… “Death by a thousand cuts” seemed inevitable, and Brian soon gained half of Torani, with good hopes of killing her before the bell rang! He was back in the lead, 172-145…

 

(I realized something watching the game afterwards though: Torani actually had one shield left, which I had totally forgotten because of the damage card attributed through the Concussion Bomb… but it doesn’t really matter: at the moment, it meant that he actually didn’t get half points for my Kimogila, but he would later, without destroying the ship, so it changed nothing for the final result.)

 

Yet Brian made a mistake with the Y-Wing’s dial, that may have cost him the game: he planned a right turn when he meant a left turn… So he wasn’t able to shoot at Torani, who would be in a better position to shoot him during the next turns, although her attack at the moment missed even if “Dutch” was strained, and she didn’t have the Y-Wing in arc the following turn. The next turn however, when “Dutch” made a 4K, Torani had him on her bullseye! She couldn’t use her Proton Rockets because of range 3, but inflicted nonetheless one hit, one crit, plus one additional hit for her special ability, therefore winning half of “Dutch” Vander’s points. I was once again back in the lead… for one point only!

 

But the game was not over yet. Although clinging very soon at only one hull left, “Dutch” could still hope to kill Torani before the bell rang, whereas the contrary was not likely, because the Kimogila's dial is... well... The Rebel ship inflicted one damage at a time, but during the last turn, finally hearing Brave Sir Robin’s advice (which I hate to do but was the only option at this point), I was able to barrel roll to the left, going too far away for “Dutch” to finish my last ship.

 

(And remember, as I did not, that Torani actually had one shield left, so this last attack wouldn’t have killed her anyway.)

 

And so, victory! For one point only… That was hell of a close game, very brutal, very funny. Good game, Brian, and I wish you the best of luck for the remainder of the tournament!

 

As for me, round 2 next week, we’ll see what happens… See you soon!

 

 

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Kyber Cup, season 5, round 5: James (Separatist Alliance) vs Nébal (First Order) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Kyber Cup, season 5, round 5! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

For this fifth round, I have been paired with James, a very nice player from the USA, who brought the following Separatist Alliance list:

 

Firespray-class Patrol Craft – •Jango Fett – 97

•Jango Fett – Simple Man (79)

•Count Dooku (10)

•Lone Wolf (5)

Contraband Cybernetics (3)

 

Belbullab-22 Starfighter – •General Grievous – 60

•General Grievous – Ambitious Cyborg (44)

Soulless One (6)

Impervium Plating (4)

Outmaneuver (6)

 

HMP Droid Gunship – •DGS-047 – 40

•DGS-047 – Adaptive Intelligence (35)

•Diamond-Boron Missiles (5)

 

Total: 197/200

 

As for myself, I brought my First Order list, my take on a Malarus TIE/fo swarm:

 

Xi-class Light Shuttle – •Commander Malarus – 58

•Commander Malarus – Vindictive Taskmaster (45)

•Agent Terex (7)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Scorch” – 33

•“Scorch” – Zeta Leader (33)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Longshot” – 31

•“Longshot” – Zeta Ace (31)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the First Order: 149-59! But I must say that the game was… pretty much unbalanced? For several reasons, not only dices.

 

As for many previous games, I didn’t know what to think of the matchup. Both lists had their strong points: I had the numbers for me, obviously, the agility once again, and many options to modify dice rolls, although on the other side Jango Fett at least had about as many with Lone Wolf and Count Dooku, and Grievous could also benefit from such advantages if he managed to strike me from behind, which is all the asthmatic cyborg is about. James, with both these pilots, had two very frightening heavy hitters, and pretty agile ones actually, and he had far more health points on each of his ships than me on mine (Soulless One and Impervium Plating seriously increasing the Belbullab-22 Starfighter's survivability; well, theoretically…); DGS-047 didn’t worry me as much as those two, but I certainly was aware that his Diamond-Boron Missiles could be dangerous for my swarm.

 

One key decision from the beginning of the game, on my side, was to choose a priority target. I had to commit on one of those ships, spreading my swarm wasn’t an option. And James perfectly knew that. I could go after Grievous, or after Jango; whatever the case, James would flee with the designated target, and hit me in the back with the other one. When I discovered James’ list, my first thought was to go after Jango: after all, the Firespray represented half of the whole list just by himself! But a training game (thanks again, pal!) made me change my mind: the fact is I couldn’t ignore Grievous; he mustn’t manage to go behind me. Plus chasing an evading Jango would be pretty much as dangerous as confronting him head on, because of his rear arc. So from the beginning of the game my primary objective was clear: I had to take down Grievous.

 

And that was the beginning of troubles for James. He was incredibly unlucky with Grievous: he lost his two shields on a random downtown attack from an Epsilon Squadron Cadet, which was quite unexpected, then suffered very early on a crippling critical damage, a dangerous gas cloud prevented him from boosting away from my swarm, then he suffered an even worse critical damage (Panicked Pilot on a Belbullab has so often been a death sentence in my own games that I totally felt bad for James here), and, yes, those were two pilot damage cards, so Impervium Plating didn’t apply… An awfully bad luck.

 

Although the Belbullab wasn’t actually the first of James’ ships to disappear from the board: that dubious honour belonged to DGS-047, who wasn’t my priority target, but those of my ships who couldn’t move so as to attack Grievous had good shots against the droid. Of course, agility 1 is an issue, but, even so, those eight health points melted faster than I (and James, obviously) hoped they would.

 

Statistics in the end showed that my red dices were good, very good even. James’ green dices were the issue: not the worst, but probably not as many evades as he should have had.

 

And then it was Jango vs the whole world, which is fitting in a way. A great pilot on a great ship, and pretty much unscathed at that time. He had already destroyed one of my Cadets, one-shot, and “Scorch”, whose mission was to end Grievous’ misery but who was therefore sandwiched between those two heavy hitters, only miraculously survived with one hull left.

 

So make no mistake: even if James had lost two of his three ships, and I had lost only one and a half of my six, the game was still on, James could win. He took a bit later half of “Longshot”, but the key point was that I had been a bit reckless with Malarus, and he almost took half of her. I had to flee with my commander, because her destruction would have actually meant that James would have taken the lead. My shuttle survived by running away as fast as she… by executing a dignified and strategically sound retreat, and then I took half of Jango on other lucky rolls (well, lucky for some). Then it was game; but I must say I sweat a little bit during those last turns.

 

(One thing here: because I’m an idiot, I’ve lost uncounted games by not running away, or too late. So maybe I’ve finally learnt something after all: thank you, Brave Sir Robin!)

 

But I was lucky, for sure. Not only with dices, I had some crazy maneuvers, not bumping when I was almost certain I would. But I must admit that I didn’t rely very much on Malarus’ rerolls, because I had most often than not painted dices. Which was great: not too much to worry regarding those strain tokens… because I didn’t have them. Actually, I didn’t rely too much on Automated Target Priority neither, during the whole game: I didn’t need to!

 

Nevertheless, if I had to choose one card from my list that was really effective, it would most certainly be Hondo Ohnaka. That crew is GREAT. And probably undercosted. Coordinating and jamming range 3 is simply insane. And even at a closer range, for instance when I jammed DGS-047, depriving him of the lock he needed to launch his Diamond-Boron Missiles, well, that was something.

 

Luck was on my side, clearly. Well played nonetheless, James, thank you for the game, and I wish you better luck for the remainder of the tournament and beyond!

 

...

 

So, this is weird: I have now four victories and only one defeat. Which must be some kind of error.

 

There is a final Swiss round before the cut, so see you next week for round 6

 

 

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Kyber Cup, season 5, round 4: Nébal (First Order) vs Tharlin (Galactic Empire) (battle report, no audio)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Kyber Cup, season 5, round 4! And a new battle report in English. Well… Actually, only this blog this time, as we had to play without audio, a first for me, and quite disturbing (there has been some confusion at least one time, entirely my fault).

 

For this fourth round, I have been paired with Tharlin, a German player, and this video comes from his Twitch channel (I thank him again for granting me the permission to upload it here); he brought the following Galactic Empire list:

 

TIE/ph Phantom – •”Whisper” – 85

•”Whisper” – Soft-Spoken Slayer (60)

•Fifth Brother (12)

Stealth Device (6)

Juke (7)

 

TIE Advanced x1 – •Darth Vader – 68

•Darth Vader – Black Leader (66)

Fire-Control System (2)

 

TIE/sk Striker – •”Duchess” – 44

•”Duchess” – Urban Ace (44)

 

Total: 197/200

 

As for myself, I brought my First Order list, my take on a Malarus TIE/fo swarm:

 

Xi-class Light Shuttle – •Commander Malarus – 58

•Commander Malarus – Vindictive Taskmaster (45)

•Agent Terex (7)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Scorch” – 33

•“Scorch” – Zeta Leader (33)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Longshot” – 31

•“Longshot” – Zeta Ace (31)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Defeat for the First Order: 34-167… My first (and probably not last) defeat during this tournament, and, to be honest, the fact that I had three victories until then was clearly some kind of anomaly… And I was utterly destroyed this time. Well played, Tharlin, and I wish you good luck for the remainder of the tournament.

 

So, Imperial aces. No Emperor Palpatine here, no need, just straightforward aces: a fat “Whisper”, of the kind I like to play myself (although I’ve not used Stealth Device on her or actually any ship since a very long time, but this modification seems to make a comeback recently, and I’ve struggled with uncatchable stealthy Actis a few times those last weeks); a classical Darth Vader with only Fire-Control System (and therefore no Afterburners); and a naked “Duchess”, as she comes.

 

What about the matchup? I would say… it was fair? I had the numbers for me, and actually a better global agility, weirdly enough. Catching aces is of course the main difficulty, but, as acy as those aces were, it must be pointed out, I guess, that none of them here had double repositioning abilities, Vader being deprived of Afterburners, and the two others relying on special abilities to arc-dodge, namely cloaking and Adaptative Ailerons; they still had more options than me, and their superior initiative meant they could react more easily at my moves, my swarm being quite monolithic (although probably not as much as many swarms).

 

But it was very soon a nightmare for me. Everything went wrong, and, although the dices were not in my favour (except for one very special roll…), I must blame my poor strategy in the first place. I did many mistakes, and was logically crushed.

 

I did not know how to engage combat. I tried something weird, and that was a very bad idea; actually, had I been more brutal, the outcome could have been very different… I didn’t know where to engage, actually, that was the first issue. Tharlin’s aces could easily flank me: that’s what aces do. Therefore I probably should have gone against one of them with all my swarm, to try and get rid of one as soon as possible. Probably not “Whisper”, who kept her distances as Phantoms do, but Darth Vader and “Duchess” could have been submerged by my swarm.

 

But I thought I could be in a better position by making an early global K-turn, playing it slow, letting the enemy come at me, and that was not the right thing to do, especially as Commander Malarus, unable to K-turn, went way too far: her re-roll aura didn’t cover all my TIE/fo, therefore, and she made a logical primary target since. Maybe a red stop could have prevented some of these issues, but, actually, flying straight towards the enemy would in hindsight have been the better choice.

 

And all went wrong. I’ve lost two TIE/fo very soon, and there was some bad luck here, but my maneuvering was awful and my attacks were poor.

 

Well, one wasn’t: I certainly did not think I would inflict four damages on Vader on a very lucky roll! But that was the best I could do, and I wasn’t able to get rid of the Sith Lord anyway. Beyond that, I think “Duchess” lost one hull, and that was it.

 

In the mean time, I did many mistakes, not anticipating my opponent’s moves. The worst blunder (well, after those meaningless K-turns) was when I got tricked by “Duchess”Adaptative Ailerons, bumping on the TIE/fo I thought to have positioned especially with her in mind, and then slooping just past them. What a jerk I was…

 

There’s not much more to say, I’m afraid. I’ve flown very badly, Tharlin was way more accurate, and he logically destroyed most of my ships. Well played!

 

As for me, let’s hope round 5 will be better…

 

 

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Kyber Cup, season 5, round 3: Druid (Separatist Alliance) vs Nébal (First Order) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Kyber Cup, season 5, round 3! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

For this third round, I have been paired with Alex aka Druid, from Austria, who brought the following Separatist Alliance list:

 

HMP Droid Gunship – •DGS-047 – 53

•DGS-047 – Adaptive Intelligence (35)

Repulsorlift Stabilizers (3)

•Kraken (11)

Thermal Detonators (3)

Delayed Fuses (1)

 

Hyena-class Droid Bomber – Techno Union Bomber – 33

Techno Union Bomber (25)

Landing Struts (1)

Plasma Torpedoes (7)

 

Hyena-class Droid Bomber – Techno Union Bomber – 33

Techno Union Bomber (25)

Landing Struts (1)

Plasma Torpedoes (7)

 

Vulture-class Droid Fighter – •DFS-311 – 28

•DFS-311 – Scouting Drone (23)

Grappling Struts (1)

•••Discord Missiles (4)

 

Vulture-class Droid Fighter – ••Haor Chall Prototype – 26

••Haor Chall Prototype – Xi Char Offering (21)

Grappling Struts (1)

•••Discord Missiles (4)

 

Vulture-class Droid Fighter – ••Haor Chall Prototype – 26

••Haor Chall Prototype – Xi Char Offering (21)

Grappling Struts (1)

•••Discord Missiles (4)

 

Total: 199/200

 

As for myself, I decided to keep the same First Order list as in the first rounds, my take on a Malarus TIE/fo swarm:

 

Xi-class Light Shuttle – •Commander Malarus – 58

•Commander Malarus – Vindictive Taskmaster (45)

•Agent Terex (7)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Scorch” – 33

•“Scorch” – Zeta Leader (33)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Longshot” – 31

•“Longshot” – Zeta Ace (31)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the First Order! 88-70. That was close… Up until the end. The issue could have been very different on many occasions. A good game therefore, and a fun one. Many thanks to Alex, he’s a very nice player!

 

I didn’t really know what to think of the matchup. Swarm against swarm, six ships vs six ships…

 

I clearly had the upper hand as far as agility was concerned, and that was something; weirdly, my ships were a bit more resilient as well, for they all had one shield, and Commander Malarus two. Finally I had access to “free” dice modifications, with Agent Terex and Automated Target Priority, and Malarus rerolls as well… also those could be an inconvenience, because all my ships would engage before all of Alex’s, which meant he could benefit from the strain tokens more than most lists. But, hey! That’s First Order, baby! And that kept me the ability to block, which could be useful.

 

On the other hand, Alex benefited from several tricks: Network Calculations, as always with droids, Kraken and DFS-311 to capitalize on them, Struts on almost everybody, Plasma Torpedoes, and, as Alex himself put it, those Discord Missiles which everybody likes. Plus I had never played with or against HMP Droid Gunships, with the ability to do sideslips, and DGS-047 had Thermal Detonators as well.

 

So I think the matchup was... fair and balanced? Feel free to comment and argue about this assumption!

 

Alex deployed his ships in two groups of three. The Vultures were in a position to flank me and sow chaos in my formation with their Discord Missiles. Facing me, the Techno Union Bombers could easily sit on a big rock with their Landing Struts to launch their Plasma Torpedoes from a safe spot (and that was partly my fault, as I didn’t think about that during setup, and gave Alex options by placing all three rocks close to his deployment zone, silly me). Then DGS-047 would be in a good position to sideslip around my squadron to my right.

 

I had to pick one of these two groups and chose the Vultures. They wouldn’t bring me many victory points, but they were the easiest to kill, I needed to get rid of enemy ships as fast as possible, and I could hope to destroy one or more before they could launch their Discord Missiles, which I dreaded especially on Commander Malarus. Then, my reasoning was that it would be easier to turn right against Alex’s left flank, whereas the opposite wold not realistically be doable.

 

As it happened, I didn’t do much damage on those Vultures… especially when I realized my three Epsilon Squadron Cadets were compelled to shoot at the Buzz Droids Swarm because of Automated Target Priority! You know, that thing that might happen, but almost never does? Well, it did… So I lost three attacks on the first engagement, and that made me quite uncomfortable to say the least.

 

(Some note here: I attacked with all three of my Cadets on the Buzz Droids Swarm, even if it had been destroyed by the first one. I wasn’t obliged to shoot with the remaining two. I did anyway, hoping to gain some calculate tokens for Automated Target Priority, which failed, no big surprise here, and that was probably a bad idea nevertheless, since it meant that they could gain strain through Malarus automatic rerolls. Luckily, as it happened, those strain tokens didn’t really have consequences, I think.)

 

In a weird way, I had some luck regarding those nasty Discord Missiles. The next turn, Alex did hit one of my ships with them, but, at this point, I chose to shoot at them with Malarus (a range three shot with her wouldn’t have been that useful, and they were range one). On one hand, I lost one more attack on enemy ships that way, but I destroyed once again the Buzz Droids before they could harm me; it was necessary, I think, because automatic damage is always bad, plus Malarus would probably pass through them the next turn, and the Xi-class Light Shuttle would be in a very bad situation then.

 

Then, even if I didn't manage to kill all the Vultures, I could turn my attention to the second group of enemy ships. Those Techno Union Bombers were fearsome with their Plasma Torpedoes, and it was impossible for me to arc-dodge them. All I could do was going range one so they couldn’t shoot with them, even if it meant three dice attacks on their part anyway (at least, there wasn’t the “free shield lost”). Then I could go behind them, and I would be in a much better position.

 

But I had to get there, and at this point DGS-047 protected them efficiently… At the same time, it was Alex’s most costly ship, with only one green dice (but way more health points than all the others): I could hope to take half of him, which would probably pay off for any lost TIE/fo on my side. So most of my ships turned against him in the end.

 

As it turned out, we didn’t play that many turns in this game: we both played swarms, after all, and I must say it’s been some time since I played one (let’s say more than five ships, I usually run three or four), and I was a bit slow… I hope it didn’t bother Alex.

 

Whatever the case, the bell rang before I could take half of DGS-047, especially considering that all my ships attacking it rolled awfully, and I could place only one of my TIE/fo behind the Bombers. Luckily, it didn’t matter that much at this point. I had a very small lead, and it wasn’t impossible for Alex to catch up and take the lead again, but he needed an almost perfect turn.

 

And so: victory. But with a very, very small MoV: only 18 points! Yeah, that was close. And fun! Good game. Thanks to Alex, and good luck to him for the remainder or the tournament!

 

Speaking about that, I have now three victories, zero defeats. Which must be a mistake, I certainly wasn’t hoping for that… My MoV is poor, obviously with such a list, so I am currently in the lower part of the ladder for those who achieved 3-0. Anyway, I’m really happy with that, as you can guess. Now, as Swiss rounds go, I’m really not optimistic for what will happen next… Well, we’ll see, I guess: round 4 soon…

 

 

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Kyber Cup, season 5, round 2: Jax (Rebel Alliance) vs Nébal (First Order) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

Kyber Cup, season 5, round 2! And a new battle report in English. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English… Please be kind!

 

(The quality of the video is a bit crappy, I’m afraid, although viewable I hope. My bad, I did a mistake with OBS, it shouldn’t happen anymore…)

 

For this second round, I have been paired with Jax, who brought the following Rebel Alliance list:

 

T-65 X-Wing – Red Squadron Veteran – 42

Red Squadron Veteran (40)

Servomotor S-Foils (0)

Selfless (2)

 

T-65 X-Wing – Red Squadron Veteran – 42

Red Squadron Veteran (40)

Servomotor S-Foils (0)

Selfless (2)

 

T-65 X-Wing – Red Squadron Veteran – 42

Red Squadron Veteran (40)

Servomotor S-Foils (0)

Selfless (2)

 

T-65 X-Wing – Red Squadron Veteran – 42

Red Squadron Veteran (40)

Servomotor S-Foils (0)

Selfless (2)

 

RZ-1 A-Wing – Green Squadron Pilot – 32

Green Squadron Pilot (30)

••XX-23 S-Thread Tracers (2)

 

Total: 200/200

 

As for myself, I had to bring the First Order list you’ve seen in round 1, my take on a Malarus TIE/fo swarm:

 

Xi-class Light Shuttle – •Commander Malarus – 58

•Commander Malarus – Vindictive Taskmaster (45)

•Agent Terex (7)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Scorch” – 33

•“Scorch” – Zeta Leader (33)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Longshot” – 31

•“Longshot” – Zeta Ace (31)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the First Order! 163-133. And that was quite tense, very close until the last turn, and we regularly alternated to take the lead. A good game therefore, but an exhausting one as well I must say! Many thanks to Jax, who was a very nice opponent.

 

Funny though how X-Wing players can have very different perspectives before the game. As often, I guess, I was quite afraid by Jax’s list: five ships meant my numerical advantage wasn’t really big; four T-65 X-Wing, that was a lot of three dices attacks and a lot of health points to chew as well; Selfless could be an issue, spreading the wounds in the most efficient way so that I couldn’t get half points or full points on decisive actions; finally, the A-Wing was carrying XX-23 S-Thread Tracers, and I knew Commander Malarus would be the ideal target for them… I wasn’t very confident, to say the least.

 

But Jax had a different point of view. When we talked about our matchup before the game began, he said he thought the odds were actually slightly in my favour (55/45, as he put it). I did have one more ship, good maneuvers, dice modifications with Commander Malarus rerolls and calculate tokens from Agent Terex and Automated Target Priority, and more green dices, whereas his list was mostly based on low agility ships. As it turned out, he was right, and for the whole game: having “won” the first decisive engagements by removing one of his ships first, I most often than not had just a slight advantage in victory points, although he regularly took the lead for some minutes and we kept alternating from that point. The final results, I guess, are furthermore confirmation that his prognosis was the most accurate.

 

Nevertheless, it was a very close and tense game all along. Of course, we both knew that, in order to win, he had to get rid of Commander Malarus as soon as possible. That was the A-Wing’s job to hit her with XX-23 S-Thread Tracers, so that the Red Squadron Veterans could attack her with double modified shots. I had really good green dices though, and Malarus stayed alive for one more turn. She was doomed after that nonetheless, and that was an issue: I really missed those rerolls…

 

I had terrible red dices the whole game. But my green dices were good, maybe even very good, and they clearly won me the game. My ships appeared to be more resilient than I thought, whereas Jax’s X-Wing, with their lower agility, were slowly chewed, bit by bit. Plus Selfless never did anything during the whole game, and that was a relief for me.

 

I did several mistakes though. My worst blunder of the game, I think, was when two of my Epsilon Squadron Cadets K-turned too early. I was hoping for Jax’s X-Wing to go faster and thought I could then hit them from behind. But only one of them did; and as for the three others, only one bumped in my TIE/fo Fighters; which meant the two others could focus and hit me hard! But in the end they didn’t. That was lucky…

 

But then I had another issue: T-65 X-Wing had the one straight maneuver, and I didn’t, so they could stay behind my Cadets without necessarily bumping on them. It turned well in the end, but that was some more luck for me. Actually, a bit later in the game, it was I who could use that tactics, especially with my blue TIE/fo Fighter, who kept deliberately bumping in Jax’s Red Squadron Veterans, so he could shoot them in the back without never having to get shot at.

 

Another big mistake… turned out to be good. That was when I thought “Longshot” was range 0 of the Red Squadron Veteran who had only one hull left, so I shot another one instead. Now, even if he had destroyed him, Jax’s ship, being the same initiative value, could shoot no matter what. But he was critically damaged: he rolled for Console Fire… and the X-Wing blew up! He had his final shot, but was dead at the end of the turn, despite having not been targeted by “Longshot” range 1. That was lucky…

 

Finally, there was that moment when I had forgotten that one of my TIE/fo Fighters suffered from Damaged Engines, so he got one stress after making a 1 hard turn. He was a good target, but survived anyway.

 

As he did during the last turn, against all odds. And that last turn was brutal. In my favour. All went bad for Jax, all went good for me.

 

Great game. Exhausting, but cool. I thank Jax once again for the game, and wish him good luck for the rest of the tournament.

 

Now before round 3, next week, all participants will have the possibility to change their list for the remainder of the tournament. But I don’t think I will do that: my list seems to work, and it is fun to play... So my Malarus swarm will probably stay for the whole tournament.

 

Anyhow, round 3 next week: See you soon!

 

 

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Kyber Cup, Season 5, round 1: Filip Djordjevic (First Order) vs Nébal (First Order) (battle report in English)

Publié le par Nébal

 

It will be a first on the Random Academy Pilot YouTube channel: a battle report in English! And I guess that this blog article presenting the lists with some comments must be in English as well. Of course, I’m French, so I’m genetically designed to speak and write an awful English. Please be kind!

 

So it’s Kyber Cup, season 5! Some huge X-Wing tournament to say the least: actually, with 413 registered players from all over the world, it is the biggest X-Wing tournament on Tabletop Simulator ever (which was unexpected for sure).

 

For the first round, I have been paired with Filip Djordjevic, a very nice X-Wing player from Serbia. He brought the following First Order list:

 

Upsilon-class Command Shuttle – •Lieutenant Dormitz – 68

•Lieutenant Dormitz – Hypercomms Specialist (66)

Hyperspace Tracking Data (2)

 

TIE/vn Silencer – •“Blackout” – 68

•“Blackout” – Ill-Fated Test Pilot (63)

Proton Rockets (5)

 

TIE/ba Interceptor – •Major Vonreg – 62

•Major Vonreg – Red Baron (55)

Daredevil (2)

Proton Rockets (5)

 

Total: 198/200

 

As for myself, I also brought a First Order list (I guess it was some kind of a drill), although a very different one, my take on a Malarus TIE/fo swarm:

 

Xi-class Light Shuttle – •Commander Malarus – 58

•Commander Malarus – Vindictive Taskmaster (45)

•Agent Terex (7)

•Hondo Ohnaka (6)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Scorch” – 33

•“Scorch” – Zeta Leader (33)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – “Longshot” – 31

•“Longshot” – Zeta Ace (31)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

TIE/fo Fighter – Epsilon Squadron Cadet – 26

Epsilon Squadron Cadet (25)

Automated Target Priority (1)

 

Total: 200/200

 

BEWARE: RIGHT AFTER THIS OMINOUS DARTH VADER PICTURE, I WILL REVEAL HOW THE GAME TURNED OUT. IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS, WATCH THE VIDEO BEFORE READING FURTHER!

 

 

Victory for the First Order! Well, I mean, for my First Order list: 167-77. A very fun game with a very nice opponent!

 

Now, before commenting the game, I must confess I did one big mistake (well, at least one), which I wasn’t aware of before watching this recording: the TIE/fo Fighter who killed “Blackout” couldn’t in fact shoot at him, because Lieutenant Dormitz was closer; Automated Target Priority should have compelled my Epsilon Squadron Cadet to target the Upsilon-class Command Shuttle instead of the Silencer. I’m very sorry for this error and apologize, to Filip first, and also to you viewers.

 

But it sure was a fun game. When I discovered Filip’s list, I must say I was very afraid. It has some serious alpha strike potential, with Lieutenant Dormitz sending his two aces companions very fast and modded, both of those being equipped with Proton Rockets; and, well, I’ve played Lieutenant Tavson enough to know that the Upsilon­-class Command Shuttle can hit really hard. To be honest, I was thinking: “OK, I’ll lose two of my ships during the first engagement or so, and maybe Commander Malarus could be one of those, which would be very bad news for me...” As it turned out, my evading TIE/fo Fighters did well enough in defence to sustain those brutal attacks – that is, except for “Longshot”, obviously...

 

But the game was on. Koiogran turns, Segnor loops and voluntary bumps were crucial to me, and they paid. One main force of my list, I guess, is that I don’t care that much about not having actions (because of stress, gas clouds, and so on): Malarus’ rerolls paired with Agent Terex’s calculate tokens, and sometimes Automated Target Priority’s calculate tokens as well, mean that I most often have dice modifications with all of my squadron one way or the other, even if I usually don’t roll many dices. These maneuvers, rerolls and calculate tokens allowed me to kill “Blackout” pretty soon (but, yes, too soon, and I’m very, very sorry about that...), and then Lieutenant Dormitz was doomed. When the Upsilon-class Command Shuttle blew up, Major Vonreg was alone to fight most of my ships, and even killing all three of my Epsilon Squadron Cadets (Commander Malarus being too far away) would not have brought him enough victory points to take the lead.

 

Although it could have turned the other way many times. My worst blunder happened right after “Blackout”’s untimely death: I knew Lieutenant Dormitz would do a red stop at this point, and hoped to multiply bumps so as to expose as few of my ships as possible to his devastating five dices, range one attack. Sadly I terribly miscalculated my fist maneuver of the turn, which meant my ships went too far away, most of them bumping precisely in front of the shuttle! And that included the fragile Commander Malarus herself: I wanted her to bump on Dormitz by going as fast as possible, but it failed miserably. It could have been very painful, but I survived well better than I expected. Actually, my ships having not bumped in Dormitz, they could then concentrate their attacks on the dreaded Upsilon-class Command Shuttle, and remove it from the game!

 

But one great thing about this whole game, as Filip himself said, was that we both had good dices, red and green. Mine were probably a bit better, I think (we haven’t checked for statistics at the end of the game), but there were very impressive dice rolls on both sides of the game mat. Which meant suspense and really epic moments, as is fit for Star Wars.

 

It was therefore a very entertaining game, I think, Filip and I having great fun regardless of the conclusion. I hope you’ll feel the same, and don’t hesitate to comment!

 

(And blame me for my terrible English, I guess.)

 

I thank Filip once again for the game, and wish him good luck for the rest of the tournament. Round 2 next week... See you soon!

 

 

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