Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Magic Beans X-Wing Miniature Store Championship

Prizes, up for grabs!
On Feburary 20, Brenda and Paraic entered a local Star Wars X-Wing Miniatures Store Championship at Magic Beans cafe. The tournament drew only 14 players, but that might have been for the best as Magic Beans is currently undergoing renovations and seating is limited.                         
Some notable absences from the tournament were Michael Scott, Steven Cubberley, Austin Jenkins, Nelson Emilio Orta, Brian Cook, Ryan Koops and Albert Roy Patterson.  The tournament still brought some serious heavy-hitters in the San Antonio community: Joseph Currier, Robert Soruco, "Ben Apple",    James T, Jon Vandermeer, Jarid S. and many others. 

We also had some visitors from out of town, namely: Lee Harris and Chris Little.

Brenda and I had prepared for the tournament by play testing at home as well as pitting our lists against various opponents, namely Vincent Gannon, Ryan Koops and Roy Patterson. Those play tests were telling.  I learned a lot about what works, and what doesn't.

With this information in hand, I entered the following list:
I was worried about the predominate Twin Laser Turret variations that are dominating the metagame, locally.  My concern was that the two B Wings were too slow to close the gap and get into the range 1 bubble of the Y Wings before getting chewed up.  I resolved to not try and race in, but instead, focus all my fire on 1 ship at a time and endure any remaining fire. My list is able to push out 10 damage dice in one round with an average of 7 damage dealt (1 being a crit). This should be enough to thwart the TLT lists and give me some breathing room.  The magic of the list comes from Jan Ors who has the ability to add an additional attack die to a friendly ship, once per round. She can also grant 1 free action to a friendly ship.  It is very common for Jan to give the Heavy Laser Cannon 5 attack dice, coupled with a Target Lock and a Focus.  Her own Twin Laser Turret is potent with a stack full of focus that her crew member accumulate.  I'm really happy with the build.  Many opponents don't realize the danger of Jan Ors until it is too late.

Brenda was running an Imperial Aces build that featured Darth Vader, Carnor Jax and Whisper. This is the same list she ran in the previous tournament. In that tournament she went 3-1 to place in the top 4.  She made such an impression that many local players revisited their Imperial lists and included Whisper.

The Magic Bean store championship was to be a 4 round Swiss pairing.  My games went like this:

Game 1  Me vs Lee Harris
Lee is a traveling adventurer who happened to be in the area at the time of the tournament.  He came prepared with a Scum & Villainy list that was comprised of 2 Y Wings shooting Twin Laser Turrets and a IG-88 Aggressor (vB).  I was more concerned about the Y Wings than I was his large ship.  He arranged his formation in a castle and didn't perform any maneuvers for the next 4 turns.  I also played defensively and turtled behind the line of dense asteroids I deployed.  I used these turns to amass 5-6 focus tokens for the Moldy Crow and then advanced up the side of the board.  Lee then made his move and had the Y Wings swing around to bring lasers to bear.   I was able to get his Y wing in all three of my ship's firing arc and did 7 damage to it.  With one hull left, it was easily destroyed the following turn.  His Aggressor was smart and used Advanced Sensors to ensure he had a focus before creeping into the battle.  Unfortunately for Lee,  my B Wings were able to deliver a crippling amount of damage and his red dice were rather cold.  He was able to kill 1 B Wing, but in the end, the overwhelming firepower of my team prevailed.

Game 2 Me vs Robert S
Robert is a retired Army Soldier who plays the game casually.  He had lost his first game but approached this match with fresh enthusiasm. He fielded 5 Z-95s, being led by LT Blout.  We wasted no time and flew into a fast engagement.  With focused fire I was able to destroy several of the Z in the opening turns. Again, my opponent's dice seemed cold, and Jan Ors' defence was often augmented by intervening asteroids with gave her 3 defense dice (along with her pile of focus tokens).  One of my B Wings was destroyed, but Jan and her wingman prevailed.

My B Wings swooping into battle among asteroids.
Game 3 Me vs Jarid S (?)
My opponent, active duty Navy, was flying a Scum build featuring 2 Y-Wings (TLT) and a Y-666.  I used the same tactic I had all day....wait behind the wall of asteroids and pounce as they try to navigate it.  While I couldn't avoid the TLTs, I was able to use the asteroids to shield Jan and force the opponent into some bottlenecks that forced bumps.  Again, I was able to destroy a Y Wing quickly, and then unloaded everything into a tokenless Y-666.  My B-Wings are excellent at jamming enemy ships and then barrel rolling away during Jan's turn to actually shoot the ship they just jammed.  While there were a few close calls, my list was able to destroy my opponnent's before time was called.

Image result for p 51 mustang
The black and white stripes of the P-51 were
also on Chris Little's entire squad.
Game 4 Me vs Chris Little
Chris fielded a list that used the full power of the Twin Laser Turret and large hull ships. Miranda Doni in a K-Wing, two Y-Wings (one with the stress bot) and a Z95.  He has painted all his ships to look like WWII P-51 Mustangs. It was intimidating.

He advanced along the edge of the board and I tried to kite his through the asteroid field. He proved too smart for that and kept a steady chase around the edge of the board. Realizing the flying rocks were not going to help me, I reversed my flight and engaged the mass of TLTs.  Chris wisely targeted Jan Ors with every volley, and while she was able to dodge a few of the shots, she was forced to fly away and leave the B Wings fending for themselves.  Chris not only had good target selection, he knew how to fly his formation to maximum effect.  My B-Wings steadily got chewed up and Jan Ors quickly followed.
The final 4 table... Lee Harris, myself and James T. Grown up kids, all of us.

"Ridin' Flirty"  Rob was not distracted and took care of business.
My resulting record was 3-1, with the loss going to the only undefeated list.  I earned 3rd place due to the fact that James T was able to keep his Margin of Victory way above mine (in other words, his victories were much more decisive than mine.)

Team Knight Watch winnings!
Brenda earned 8th place with a record of 2-2.  She noticed a very "anti-Whisper" slant to the tournament...and she took that as a compliment to her last tournament.  She was able to prevail against some good X-Wing players.

Thanks to Magic Beans for hosting the tournament and the prize support. Thanks to Vincent Gannon for serving as the Tournament Organizer.  Thanks to all my opponents for being fun players who were the right mixture of competitive and casual.

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