05 March 2013

Elite Pilot Skills- Daredevil

This post regarding Elite Pilot Skills is part of a larger article regarding Wave 2 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.

I swear I'll take picutres of more Wave 2 stuff than just the A-Wing tomorrow night

Daredevil (3)
Card Text: Execute a red <Turn Right at 1> or <Turn Left at 1> maneuver. Then, if you do not have the <Boost Action> icon, roll two attack dice. Suffer any <Hit> damage or <Critical Damage> damage as rolled.

Usage in game: (Scary-ass) Additional maneuverability
Action?: Yes.

Breakdown: Daredevil is a card you need to read closely to see the full potential, and even then I don't think a lot of players will fully realize what they've got in front of them. I've heard and read too many conversations that ask why somebody would waste an Elite Pilot Skill slot for Daredevil when they could just buy Engine Modification and get a Boost Action icon added to their ship for one more point. 

Look closely at the Daredevil card though, and you'll find those aren't 1 banks on the Daredevil card- they're 1 turns.

If that foreshadowing was too subtle for you, let me spell it out- Boost allows you to make banks, not turns. If you need to brush up on what a Boost Action gets you, read up on Boost if you need to.

So big deal, right? Banks, schmanks. Who cares? Why would I waste an Elite Pilot Talent on-

Well, still I think that Boost is- wait- what? OH! Oh shit! Is that picture real?

They're real, and they're spectacular. If you click on that picture, you'll see that a 1 Turn is a white maneuver for an Interceptor (just for example- a 1 Turn is a white move for several other ships too), coupled up with a Daredevil maneuver in the same direction. The empty base is in there to remind you that there's a stop along the way as they're two separate maneuvers and all.

Got a buddy who is preternaturally good at guessing your maneuvers? Seems like he's in your six the whole doggone match? Well, grab a Saber Squadron Interceptor, stick Daredevil on him, and pull the above picture in your next match for a real Shyamalan-esque plot twist (one of the good ones I mean). Be sure to bring a mop to clean up the puddle forming under your opponent as you pick up the Attack dice.

So what else is different between the Daredevil and Boost Actions?

Well, these turns that Daredevil allows count as maneuvers, and as they're listed as being red maneuvers in the card text, that means you're going to get a Stress token. In the case of Soontir Fel, that can be construed as being a good thing, for most folks this is kind of a negative, or at the very least is something that needs to be managed. That's pretty significant one way or the other. Main thing to keep in mind here of course is not to pull Daredevil if you're already stressed out- stick with a Boost if you need to get out of somebody's firing arc as it doesn't count as a maneuver and doesn't give Stress tokens.

POSSIBLY HUGELY IMPORTANT EDIT: It just occurred to me while posting in a thread about Boost over on the FFG forums, you cannot pre-measure a Daredevil action like you would a Boost or Barrel Roll. It's termed a maneuver in the card text, not an Action (like Boost or Barrel Roll), so it is not permissible to pre-measure a Daredevil maneuver (page 6 of the rulebook). With Boost, if you're going to overlap, you just don't perform the Action and your ship doesn't move, but with Daredevil, you'd perform the maneuver, then if you overlapped, you move back along your template to the point you're not touching the ship's base, etc.

I love this card because unless you either a) do your homework by actually, you know, reading the card text and pulling out your templates to see how this stuff actually functions, or b) read amazingly insightful posts like this one, this is a total sleeper card a lot of folks will glance at and dismiss.

I guarantee if your gaming group doesn't read up on X-Wing Miniatures on the FFG forums, some of the other good X-Wing forum sites, or TheMetalBikini.com, you could pull this stunt and win your next tournament with an Interceptor heavy list. Few people will see this one coming unless someone tells them about it. Because most people are stupid and lazy and want other folks to do the thinking for them. Not you though- you're cool. :)

Hell, even if they have read this particular strategy somewhere else, it's still hard to get your head around. I mean, Christ- where exactly are you safe when it comes to Boosting ships (which again- is any ship now that Engine Modification is out there) that have a 1 Turn as a maneuver on their dial that also have a pilot who is a Daredevil? It gets even more interesting if you can add in some sort of Stress mitigation mechanic.

Wave 2 Imperial poster boy Soontir Fel gets absolutely terrifying with this as his Pilot Skill as he doesn't even need to buy the Engine Upgrade being as how he's already flying a TIE Interceptor. Remember yesterday when I said that Push The Limit seems tailor made for him? Well, if you're not that good at keeping your buddy's ships off your six, take this instead. 

Got Fel in your sights? Closed to Range 1 distance? Time to start saying, "Stay on target, stay on target", and laughing right? Nah. Bad news pal, after doing the 1 Turn for his movement and subsequently the 1 turn Daredevil Action, he picks up a Focus because he's stressed. Oh, and he's PR9, so in all likelihood, he's now shooting at you as soon as he sets down that 1 turn template the second time.

Don't forget the extra die, Soontir.