04 March 2013

Elite Pilot Skills- Push The Limit

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.

Push The Limit (3)
Card Text: Once per round, after you perform an action, you may perform 1 free action shown in your action bar. Then receive 1 stress token.

Usage in game: Additional Action at a cost...
Action?: No.

Breakdown: I recently started playing Edge of the Empire with some friends of mine. I don't know if y'all play this game, but every combat turn, you can perform one maneuver (drawing a gun, aiming, taking cover, etc.) and one action (shooting your gun, etc.). Now, if you want to, you can choose to pull 2 maneuvers and the action, i.e. draw your weapon and aim it, then fire it as well, but you invoke strain to do so, which will eventually make you pass out or turn an ankle or whatever.

Push The Limit is sorta like that. One Action per turn just not enough for ya? Garven Dreis, Squad Leader, Dutch Vander, etc. not for you? Pay three points, and you too can be a sort of, generic, off-brand Vader! Pick up your Stress Token at customer service, please.

PTL isn't bad. Don't take my flippant tone the wrong way; like most any of the Elite Pilot Skills, it's beneficial with a drawback that in some specific cases, isn't really a drawback at all. In fact, it makes perfect sense to stick it on Tycho Celchu as he doesn't care if he has Stress tokens or not when it comes to declaring Actions, and it actually makes a whole lot of sense to stick it on Soontir Fel as he gets a Focus token every time he receives a Stress Token.

Think about that for a moment, Soontir Fel has four Actions in his bar, standard. If you stick Push The Limit on him, you could conceivably do up to three of those four Actions every round. Right? I'm right about that, aren't I? This has been another one of those rough weekends with the kids where I don't get much sleep, so maybe I'm got this wrong and everybody will attack me for being a laser brain in the comments section, but I swear that's accurate. Admittedly, it ain't cheap, brings him to an even 30 points, but that's pretty amazing. Just be sure you understand the first two Actions can't both be Focuses, though you could do, for example an Evade with Fel's normal round Action, pick Focus for your PTL Free Action, which then stresses you, which triggers a Focus Token (for more info on these kind of shenanigans, check out the article called Multiple Actions, Same Actions Explained!) All that with a PR 9 TIE Interceptor? Holy Mackerel, will anybody be able to shoot him down without the luckiest of lucky rolls? Sign me up.

PTL works well with pretty much anyone else who has some extra means of mitigating stress too- Luke or Wedge with an R2 Astromech (I know, I know- you'd never fly Luke or Wedge with just an R2 Astromech, but it's possible and just imagine for a moment you've gotten really good at having Biggs tank for Wedge, and now Wedge can Focus and Target Lock every... single... round), A Falcon pilot with Nein Nunb, a Green Squadron A-Wing and the plethora of green maneuvers available to A-Wings, ditto for a Saber TIE Interceptor, or the aforementioned Celchu. 

Again, anyone- even a Black Squadron TIE (hi HeyChadwick!), can conceivably make use of another Action, it's just some folks are a little better at dealing with the downside than others. It mainly depends on how competent you are at making green moves and not compromising yourself, which probably really is more about whether your opponent is good at exploiting your relative predictability in having to make a green move to get rid of your stress or not.

Well that and whether or not he's packing an Ion weapon. 

Remember, that 1 straight from an ion hit is defined as a white maneuver regardless of the ship performing it or any upgrades they may possess, so watch it pulling this stunt around a Y-Wing or a Firespray.

Also recall that in the rulebook, it states that if you assign a stressful maneuver to a ship that already has a Stress Token, not only does the move not go off, your opponent gets to take the wheel for that ship and assign it any move s/he wants (that isn't a stressful move). I expect this rule to get glossed over a lot now that Wave 2 has hit because in most cases, playing under stress wasn't really that big of a deal with just the Wave 1 stuff. Stress was largely invoked because you did a K-Turn and that was pretty much the beginning and end of it. Now with Kath Scarlet dishing out Stress Tokens when her crits are mitigated and cards like Push The Limit, we're all going to need to keep an eye on Stress a little more closely both on our side as well as the other side of the table for those folks who like to pull K-Turns willy-nilly.