This post regarding Named Pilots is part of a larger article regarding Wave 1 listbuilding- the rest of the posts n this series will be available in the coming weeks as I'm revealing a post or two per day on the various topics in that larger article. For more info, click the "Ship List Articles" tab at the top of the page or simply click here.
Card: Horton Salm (Y-Wing) 23 pts.
Card Text: When attacking at range 2-3, you may reroll any of your blank results.
Ability is an Action?: No.
Excels at: Attack
Quick Take: Salm may not be flying a ship that can do a ton of damage, but if he’s got a Focus token and firing at range 2-3, he very nearly can’t miss. For this reason, he's the only Y-Wing you might even consider taking without an Ion Cannon Turret, but if you do opt for the ICT, you'll find it much more effective than on any other Y if you can manage to stay at Range 2 from your target (remember, ICT only works at Range 1-2 and Salm's ability only works at Range 2-3).
Elite Skills/ Upgrades: This is the one time in this whole article you’re going to see me advocate the use of Proton Torpedoes without regard to context. Horton Salm is a torpedo boat, full stop.
If you can manage to grab a Focus (paging Garven Dreis, paging Garvin Dreis, please pick up the white courtesy phone), you’re virtually assured four hits, at least one of which ought to be a crit. Even if you're not flying with Dreis (and bear in mind, you're going to probably need some Swarm Tactics shenanigans to get Dreis to predictably discard the Focus onto Salm as Salm is a higher Pilot Rank), still try and get that Focus token before you launch your torps. It' ain't the end of the world if you don't, but you're really going to sting somebody if you do.
It’d be pure insanity, but this is also the only time I’d actually consider using the Y-Wing’s ability to stock 2 salvos of Proton Torpedoes- look closely at the card; Y-Wings have 2 Torpedo symbols on them. How nuts would that be?
Other than PTs, Salm benefits from R5 droids, just like Dutch Vander or any Y-Wing, to keep him in the game by mitigating or removing inevitable damage from only having 1 Defense die. Whether all those points are worth it on a ship with such a specialized use such as Salm is entirely your call. A case could be made for loading up on Torps and forgetting a droid as Salm should be at 2-3 re-rolling dice anyway and at that range, a TIE (or even several) will have trouble doing any significant damage to a Y-Wing. If you really want to try Salm + Torps but can’t find the points, try running him without a droid at all.
In the most terrible plot-twist this side of The Village, Salm does not have Elite Skills available to him. I haev no idea why- he's PR 8 for Christ's sake. If only you could give him Swarm Tactics...