Thursday, 2 July 2015

X-wing: Testing the Decimator

Hi folks,

On Tuesday I teamed up with a few of the usual suspects (Sgt Waz, KuriboGoomba and Wade) to play some Pathfinder. I haven't played for a while and they are just starting on one of the expansions. It was balls hard, but my character ended up with some neat new stuff. Knowing the guys, and my lack of attendance at these sessions, all of my loot will be sold by the time I play another game ;-)

After the game we had a bit of time left over before Goomba had to split, so we tested out two of my X-wing lists. I teamed up with Wade to test out the Decimator (Captain Oicunn, Veteran Instincts, Flechette Torpedoes, Anti-pursuit Laser, Mara Jade and Dauntless). We backed it up with four TIE Academy Pilots for mini-swarm fun. With this loud-out the Decimator deals damage and gets a free action when it crashes into something. It also has the possibility of damaging anything that crashes into it. Mara Jade dishes out stress tokens to enemies within range 1 and Veteran Instincts offsets Oicunn's relatively low skill. The Flechette Torpedoes were a waste of points but I wanted to give them a go.

Goomba and Sergeant Waz took the other ships I had brought, a YT-2400 and dual B-wing stress build. The YT-2400 was set up to exploit stressed ships (Eaden Vrill, Flechette Cannon, Hull Upgrade, Gunner), whilst the B-wings were both Dagger Squadron Pilots assigned the role of stressing ships (Flechette Cannon, B-wing/E2 and Tactician). Of course, B-wings can do some heavy damage up close using their primary attack, but the load-out also allows them to deal a damage and a stress token with their Flechette Cannons, and/or add a stress token if making an attack at range 2 (Tacticians, they be all tactical).

Here is a quick batrep:

The TIE swarm sweeps towards the Rebels. The YT-2400 hits the Decimator with its Flechette cannon, dealing out damage and stress. The big ships dealt heavy damage to each other in passing.

The B-wings move in to finish off the Decimator, but fail to make a significant impact. They lose some shield tokens in return and become stressed, reducing their maneuverability. The TIE's continue to harass the YT-2400 as it passes by, evading return fire.

The Decimator deals more damage to the YT-2400 and the TIE's finish it off. The ridiculous amount of hull points on the Decimator are making their presence felt. In the backfield a B-wing takes a fatal critical hit from a TIE.

The remaining B-wing whittles the Decimator down to 5 hull points, but is immolated the next turn by the fire from two TIE's and the finally the Decimator itself.

The Decimator is a tough ship to crack when you are trying to avoid a TIE swarm at the same time. It is capable of doing quite a bit of damage and has plenty of builds that are aimed at repelling close contact with enemy ships. The build used in this game never really worked to the fullest; the Rebel players went to great pains not to collide with the Decimator and prevented me from ramming them. In a way, this was useful as it dictated how they played. The addition of Mara Jade prevented ships from K-turning onto my back after making a pass (this won't work in every game, there are other ways of shedding stress). The Dauntless title came in handy when the Decimator collided with a TIE, allowing it to immediately get a Target Lock on the remaining B-wing and get the most out of that turn. Next I am keen to try a Commander Kenkirk build with Ysanne Isard, to perhaps save a few more hits on the ship.

The Rebel list had its chances to rip the heart out of the Imperials but were thwarted by bad rolls and maneuvering errors. As always, focusing on on ship until it is eliminated is usually the best way to go, though they had trouble doing this as the ships were perpetually stressed by Mara Jade then harassed by TIEs. I am keen to try this list out again, but against a non-TIE swarm Imperial list!

The day after the game I headed into my FLGS and bought myself some Birthday presents :-) The collector in me loved the idea of having an Imperial Shuttle escorted by two Royal Guard TIE's:

See you across the table,