31 May 2013

Tournament Lists- Multiple Firesprays

Standard X-Wing Miniatures List Discussion Disclaimer- The most important element you can bring with you to any X-Wing Tournament is your own experience with the game. You can take the nastiest, meanest, and most bestest internet list with you to a Tournament, but if you don't know how to manage Pilot Skill, Actions, and Maneuvers, you are going to get sent home with an donut for your W's. 

I can't stress this enough- this game is not 40k where you plop down the most points-optimized net list from the latest codex, push it forward the max amount, then win. Your list is important, but you need to be familiar with the game and you need to be familiar with playing the list you're using if you want to consistently compete at a high level. 

It seems crazy to think now, that in the weeks leading up to the release of the Wave 2 ships just three months ago the internets were alight with people talking about how terrible Slave I was. To none of those naysayers defense, the full (and accurate) ship stats along with all the pilot and upgrade cards had been revealed worldwide within days of the Kessel Run Tournaments, so it wasn't like folks had no idea what was coming, or that things somehow changed drastically, it really just boiled down to a lot of people getting it wrong. 

My how times have changed.

People want to look at stuff in this game in that same vacuum that they look at units from other miniatures games. Eventually I think those folks will finally realize there's more to a ship in X-Wing Miniatures than it's stats, but I digress. 

 Anyway, dual or multiple Firespray lists. Right. 

There's several different flavors making the rounds, but they vary, sometimes fairly significantly. I want to talk about a couple specifically because 1) They're the most common, and 2) I can't spend all night talking about every single build variation I can think up, no matter how viable and different they may be- I got my Regional to pack for, yo!

Sample 100 Points Dual/ Multiple Firespray Lists

Triple (B)H- actually 99 points
Bounty Hunter
Bounty Hunter
Bounty Hunter

It ain't pretty, it ain't particularly sexy, and it'd be kinda pricey in real money, but dig on that for a second. I've said before that Firesprays are sorta like big ship versions of X-Wings what with their three primary and 2 defense, but where the X-Wing has 5 HP (2 shields, 3 hull), the Firespray boasts 10 HP (4 shields and 6 hull). 

Nasty, right? And there's three of them. 

So what a Bounty Hunter can't take Elite Pilot Skills? So what they're Pilot Skill 3? If you can maneuver big ships, more specifically you can maneuver with the Firespray dial, this really is something you ought to consider in a tournament setting. 

Dig on the cold data- 

Triple (B)H
Total Attack Dice at Range 2: 9
Total Hull: 18
Total Shields: 12
Total HP: 30

I'm still not 100% sure if I'm engaging in my trademark hyperbole when I say this or not, but I think the Triple (B)H might be the most accessible Imperial list to date. I hesitate because it isn't cheap money-wise, but it's really not hard to fly, puts out a good amount of lead, has good survivability, doesn't rely on gimmicks, tricks, or synergy... it's kinda like the X-Wing Miniatures version of a NIN show- there's so much cool stuff going on, it's hard to really pick out the best part. 

Bear in mind too, it's possible a buddy or two from your local gaming club might not be taking his Firespray to Regionals, so maybe you can borrow his instead of having to buy. You can pay him back by loaning him the upgrade cards that came with yours- you won't be needing them anyway, right? 

All right, let's say you can't get three Firesprays, but you can get your hands on two. Hows about...

Krassis Trelix w/ Heavy Laser Cannon*
Kath Scarlet w/ Veteran Instincts

My buddy Sean summed up why exactly these kinda long-range oriented Firespray lists are so dangerous in an email to me yesterday. I'm paraphrasing a bit here, but it's Sean's opinion that they're the only ship in the game that can do good, consistent damage from afar and every other ship becomes easier to deal with the longer you can stay away from it. 

I talked about what a no-brainer Trelix with an Ion Cannon or Heavy Laser Cannon is in his article. It still applies. I like him with an HLC personally, but if you really want Ion functionality, well, that's why the little asterisk is there, innit? 

I think Veteran Instincts works on Kath because it bumps her up to a 9, and well, frankly, that's scary. It's only a point, so if you think another Elite Pilot Skill might better serve you in particular, or you're really sold on the Ion Cannon idea, you could remove the upgrades I have on Trelix and Scarlet and just give them both Ion Cannons for your version of this list. 

Howlrunner is there in case somebody gets too close. Not only is she PS 8, but her special ability works on Firesprays as well as standard TIEs, so the Firesprays can blast the ships that do manage to close on them while benefiting from her card text. Doesn't work on their secondaries remember, but they've got an Attack 3 primary, so it's not like you're wasting it by any stretch. 

Cold data for KKH- 

Total Attack Dice at Range 2: 8 (primary), 9 (secondary)
Total Hull: 15
Total Shields: 8
Total HP: 23

So what beats up on this list? 

A Falcon-centric list can probably get close enough without dying to at least disrupt some maneuvering plans, and the more nimble ships can try and exploit that huge blind spot on the sides of the Firespray.

Should you take out Howlrunner first? Second? Last? I don't know. Me personally, it would depend on if my opponent is relying on her card text. If both the Firesprays are shooting me up with secondary fire, I'd be more likely to try and get one of them off the board and kind of ignore Howlie. Of course, if Howlie were to blow a maneuver and lose her Perform Action step right in front of me at Range 1, you better believe I'd go after her. If not, I don't know if I'd worry about her. Both of those Firesprays are worth a modified win if you don't lose any of your own ships, where Howlrunner is not enough to trigger that win criteria by herself. 

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