Sunday, 24 January 2016

076. Different hobby - X-WING...

Col. Ackland (Ray) piped up on our little group chat the other week about his recent purchase of a few X-Wing starter sets and I went all fanboi, squeeing in delight, that someone in the group fancied playing X-Wing, a game I've wanted to try since its release, but which I wasn't sure the other lads were bothered with (silly me for not simply asking!).

His kit duly arrived this week (my purchase - I jumped in feet first once I knew he was keen - is still awaiting shipping), and even though he's got a touch of Nurgles Rot, I braved being struck down and went round his place last night for our first game (Ray had run some solo demo games during the week to get a handle on the rules).

Ray went all in for a couple of the new Force Awakens core sets plus, some expansions (ie the stand alone TIE F/O and T-70, Vaders Advance and the Falcon) so we had plenty of things to choose from.  I picked up the Rebel side while he went First Order.

The volume of cards and tokens boggled me at first, but the rules themselves are fairly intuitive once you get started.  Having so many upgrade rules on the Pilot, Ship and Equipment cards simply means it was more likely we'd forget to do something - like Ray forgetting his Squad Leader perk for most of the game!

We built a basic 100 point list each (I actually had 102 as I overspent with Rays permission on Astromechs) - I went with:
- Poe - Targeting Astromech, Cool Hand, Advance Proton Torpedoes, Integrated Astromech

- Blue Ace - R5-X3, Weapons Guidance, Proton Torpedoes, Integrated Astromech
- Blue Squad Rookie - BB8, Weapons Guidance, Integrated Astromech

Ray had five FO Toes of various pilot calibers.
First turn movement - the FO TIEs are fast!  I really hadn't expected them to be able to boost down the board as quick as they did
The view from my Blue Ace - Poe on his right.  Ray was able to keep those three TIEs in formation for nearly the full game - great spacial awareness and movement decisions

Starting to mix it up.  I invariably stalled my movement by clipping other ships when they moved in the Pilot Skill sequence which I forgot every turn so kept aiming my ships for spaces that Ray was able to occupy first.  This resulted in lots of turns of me fumbling Poe around the middle of the scrum, while my Blue Ace dallied around the fringe, always facing off away seemingly from the fight.
Our mate Dale turned up at turn 3 and took over the Falcon.  Ray received two more TIEs with kit in compensation.

Rays new TIEs rush towards the fray.  He seemed to constantly manage to get his TIEs behind or in my flanks - he is a very canny player.
The Falcon swooping in.  Dale suffered like me in his movement, constantly getting blocked by Ray (or myself!!) with the Falcon dithering around and then getting smashed by laser fire from the TIEs.
Late in the game, Ray, worn out from his fight against Nurgles Rot. and general sleepiness (this is near midnight!) pondering what to do with his next move sequence.
I called the game just after midnight.  Ray took down the Falcon in his last turn, as well as my Blue Novice.  Dale and I had managed to take out three TIEs and strip another two of  all but one hull point each, but once we totted up the remaining damage counters, Ray came out on top by three.

It was a great game, and with that one under our belt, I feel confident the next time we face off we'll be able to knock a game out under this ones four hour play time!  I'm expecting an original trilogy collection of Rebel ships in the next few weeks, and after seeing Rays repaints on Vaders Advanced, think I'll do a spot of touching up to model my X-wings after the Rogue Squadron colours from the Dark Horse comics and Michael Stackpole novels, with the A-Wing and B-Wings getting touch ups to match squadron colours in Jedi.

On the 40K front I have been very lax the last month.  I have yet to finish the Gretchin crew I started before the new year, let alone lift a brush for anything else.  I have assembled a few minis for the planned Lost and the Damned force, and leave you with this crappy phone camera images of the force as it currently sits.  I want to add some Plague Drones, Blightkings, a Plague Hulk and then some armoured support of some type later on, but there is enough here for me to sink my teeth into slowly this year.
Renegade Command, Cultists and Beastmen Auxiliary
Death guard heavy hitters and Renegade Ogryns
The professional element of the Renegade force using DKoK, and the Daemon contingent
Cheers all,



  1. Great to hear you started playing X-Wing! It is a fantastic game; probably the game I play most out of any miniature based game. The rule set for the game is quite simple, but it holds a lot of depth and room for clever plays (particularly in the movement phase). Now that the game is a few years old there are an impressive array of ships available to choose from (all of which have their own feel and style of play). FFG also does a good job of trying to keep the ships as balanced as they can, printing new cards to help play-styles and ships that are not normally taken (competitively). I look forward to hearing more about your growing Rebel fleet!

    That is a sizable Lost and the Damned force! Great job getting all those models assembled! Keep up the great work!

    1. Cheers Adam. The nuance of the game is great. The array of cards was initially bewildering but its really easy to get a grip on. I too have been impressed by FFG's approach to listening to feedback, reviewing the tournament scene etc and bringing balance to the game. I read through the FAQ last night and that alone was impressive and clearly set them aside from someone like GW who is in the main, the only other game company I've been involved with in the past (excluding a slight foray into Infinity). Being a fan of the EU (or now Legacy range of titles), I'm familiar with near all of the ships so far and could easily have spent loads more than my initial spend buying ships.

      I only had to build 3 squads for the LoD as the rest is stuff I had on the shelves of shame that I'd picked up for other projects across the years. This project allows me to consolidate a bit of what I already had with a view to actually getting some use from them.

    2. The nuance of the game is really neat. I also really like how it caters both towards casual and competitive play. With the shear number of different pilots and upgrade cards available, you can really create a lot of cleaver and synergistic squads (and thematic!). But than at the same time if you don't want to spend a lot of time list building, you can throw something together quickly with ships you like and still have a great time.

      It is great to hear you are familiar with the Extended Universe. :) FFG has done a wonderful job bring lots of those ships and pilots to life in the game. I can't tell you how excited I have been on some of the announcements of new ships being made (few games have gotten me so excited). It was wise to limit the amount of different ships in your initial purpose. You owe it to yourself to spend time with each of them (and with too many ships all at one time that could prove tricky). I don't think I have every played a single list more than once; each time I want to try something new!

      I have found myself playing the Imperials mostly. I really like playing with small squadrons of elite pilots (of which the Imperials have plenty). The Tie Interceptors are some of the most fun and rewarding ships I have played with. Carnor Jax and Soontir Fel are just so much fun!

    3. I can definitely see myself getting some classic Imperial ships at a layer stage. The Interceptor is too cool not to pick up and Soontir Fell v Wedge Antilles is a match up in looking forward to seeing.

  2. Very nice! It's not a game I've played before - or even know much about it - but it seems rather good. I like the sound of it, particularly the way it caters for all levels of competitiveness, and it also seems very visually impressive.

    1. Hey Scipio, great to hear from you again. Yes, the catering to all levels is a nice touch s it makes it much more accessible. Being a massive Star Wars fan it also hits lots of the nostalgia buttons from my childhood, as well as brings the social element inherent in most two player miniature games to the table.

  3. DKK in your renegades and heretics ? That's like padding your Sheppard's Pie out with licorice shoelaces.

    1. Ha. Haven't had Sheppards Pie in a while.

      I struggled on a troop choice for the renegades. While the FW militia torsos are cool, because you have to use Cadian parts they look a bit samey after more than one squad. The DKoK don't necessarily scream Imperial and FW have done more than one squad of them.

  4. Funnily enough I played X-wing for only the 2nd time in a couple years this weekend with the new EpVII ships. Very fun. My TIE's kicked arse both games.

    Nice that we only had to get the ships, tokens&cards and dice out to play the game and clear of my dinner table too.

    1. The put down/pack up time was definitely refreshing - especially with Ray and I traditionally playing Guard and Orks respectively.

  5. Oh, yes.

    It's an absurdly briliant game - all the better when you use it to tell stories too. You may just enjoy the 'X-Wing' label on my blog for some of our past adventures...

    Welcome aboard, Cobber!

    1. I have followed your X-Wing exploits and been insanely jealous! You were one of the first blogs I regularly follow that made the switch from 40K into X-wing (amongst other games).