15 September 2014

Bikini Squadron Analysis by Tract, Part 3

The next installment of Tract's analysis of your pilot cards! Be sure to stop by his X-Wing Miniatures blog too!

Today we’re going to hit our last two X-wing pilots. We’re going to see X’s, Y’s, YT’s and A’s (oh my!), so you should feel like there’s more ship variety in today’s post.

This is cool. It’s kind of a Kyle Katarn or Garven Dreis, but in reverse. You guarantee that you’re going to have a focus for defense, but someone else loses theirs. That’d be a Bad Wingman trait if I ever saw one. I’m not sure I’d ever use this pilot, but it’s a neat idea.

This is kind of Sensor Jammer-like, except way worse for the other guy. It’s probably slightly overpowered, but I thought it was interesting and potentially viable. The attacker would have to be allowed to reroll that die (by spending a TL or using Predator) for it to not be totally OP, but it would still be better than Sensor Jammer.

I almost included this guy as a double with my card from yesterday (uh, make that last week; stupid work!- Clint), Tract Gildart. He’s the one that lets you add 2 to a friendly’s attack in exchange for your attack for the round. This guy is different enough though that I thought I’d give him his own. This ability uses up your action, which is probably good cuz it’s pretty great. You pick a friendly ship for your action, then whoever that friendly attacks during the combat phase gets shot by you first. Now, I’d say that this ability has real limited potential, which is why I could actually see it being used. Range 1-2 isn’t bad, but it’s a Y-wing. Doing a primary weapon attack just isn’t that scary. Also, you won’t have a focus or a TL for that attack or your actual attack, since you used your action getting the second attack. Unless some good buddy passes you something, but yeah. Also, you have to hope that the friendly ship that you chose is going to have a target, or your action is wasted. AND, you have to be able to shoot the target. There are so many ways this could fail to work out for you that it’s almost not worth it, but it’s such a wild card that I couldn’t leave it out.

I don’t play with a lot of bombs on the table. In fact, I’ve never actually seen a proximity mine dropped. However, the idea that this ship gets better when it’s sticking close to the rocks is really cool. I wonder if it may end up being overpowered, but it’s such a unique ability and stands to make you play this ship very differently than you otherwise would play a Y-Wing.

All the effects! My major objection to this card is that its effects go on for the whole round and with new effects, which makes it difficult to keep track of. So you do a k-turn, and then you have attack 4. Which is monstrous, and because it says “your next attack”, it doesn’t even have to be immediately after the k-turn. You can wait a round, de-stress, and then fire 4 attack dice with a focus at some schlub. Two stress after that really hurts, but may be what it takes to balance something like this.

I’m doing these two together since they’re very related abilities. Basically, you get to do two attacks in a round if you have a secondary weapon. On the X-wing, this means you can fire your torps AND your main lasers in the same round. Of course, the big issue with this is that your TL will be spent firing the torps, and you probably only have 1 focus (if any) for both attacks. However, it does cause stress, and is a one-time-use (since you can only carry one set of torps). The Y-wing has some very particular requirements. Carrying a passenger is another point sink, though of course you can get some good use from them. The best secondary to go with this would be the ever-popular ion turret, and putting a recon specialist in as the passenger would give you a focus for both attacks. Now, doing all of that, going from the point cost on the card and not doing any analysis to see if it’s correct, puts the total cost for this ship at 28+3+5 = 36 points. That’s a super expensive ship, just to be able to fire your measly 2 attack weapon along with your ion turret. It gives you options, makes you pay for it, and introduces some interesting dynamics. I like both these cards.

This guy has changed the values on the hull of the YT-1300 and I’m not sure why or even if that was intended, but whatever. Basically this is a pilot ability that makes the R5-P9 ability available on the YT-1300. It’s kind of conservative, since it’s an effect we’ve already seen, but it’s exciting because it’s being applied to a ship we haven’t been able to see it applied to. I think this one stands to be especially abused because of the crew slots, meaning you can take Recon Specialist, use a focus to attack, and have another to recover a shield at the end of the round. The only way you’d spend it on defense would be if someone attacked you from Range 3 and you rolled two eyeballs. So, this card probably isn’t useable, but I’m a sucker for trying out transfer combos.

Like the card before, this is an effect we’ve already seen, moved to a new ship. Just in case you weren’t paying attention, this is the Luke Skywalker Pilot ability, put on an A-wing. This makes a lot of sense, but holy smokes as if A-wings weren’t hard enough to hit already. It would mean that you would be free to use your focus for offense, though.

Whoa. Gotta take a second here to think through what this means. So, Chromatic shoots at a TIE, and hits it. There is an X-wing, who is further than range 3 from Chromatic, but has that TIE in its firing arc (not necessarily in range though?). Then, the TIE also receives a stress token. Wowza, that’s one complex, highly specific effect. It’s neat though, kinda like Ethan Abat or whatever the heck his name is.

Well, umm, great minds think alike? They even have the same Pilot Skill level. That’s pretty funny. Anyway, the idea of negating the Range 1 bonus is pretty interesting, and seems like a reverse from the common Range 3 negation we see with secondary weapons. I think it makes sense on the A-wing, moreso than any other Rebel ship.

And there’s your ten! The next entry will finish us up and take us right through the Wave 4 pilots.