Friday, October 9, 2015

Wave 1 Memorial Vassal Tournament - Round 2 vs Dab Darklighter

In ongoing coverage of my tournament for the Wave 1 Memorial, here is my second round opponent. This time I was up against Dab Darklighter - a guy that is relatively local for me - we actually have played before in the past in real life.  For a reminder, here was his list:

DabDarklighter's Fleet:                       400 pts
Flagship                          126pts  
        VSD2                         85
        Admiral Motti            24
        Intel Officer                7
        Leading Shots            4
        XI7 Turbolasers         6
Ship                                102pts  
        VSD2                        85
        Intel Officer                7
        Leading Shots            4
        XI7 Turbolasers         6
Ship                                86pts    
        VSD1                      73
        Gunnery Team          7
        XI7 Turbolasers         6
Ship                                86pts    
        VSD1                      73
        Gunnery Team          7
        XI7 Turbolasers         6

Initial Setup - Word was that the Horton's replacement, the Vander, would be jumping in from hyperspace.
Enemy VSDs set up crowding the bottom of the map, while I set up on their Left Flank.


True to my strategy, I deferred First Player to him, electing to stick him with my objectives, which I figured would be absolutely punishing to him.  Of the three, he elected to take Hyperspace Assault as the one least likely to give me extra points.  My replacement for the recently crippled Horton, the Vander, would be jumping into this engagement with a set of newly replaced X-Wing squadrons.

Obstacles were placed in the four corners, as well as one rock near the center of my deployment area, and the station on his end of the deployment area.  Hyperspace markers were placed in the center, and at each flank, up tight to his deployment zone.

His ships arrayed themselves one after another, in a kind of spreading line, with the two flank ships at 1 click turns from the center.  He placed his VSD1s on the flanks, with the VSD2s forming his middle.

My first AFII (the Porkins) went down to cut across the first placed VSD1's bow, but then squadrons and the other AFII (the Darklighter) went down to cut up his Left flank.

Round 1:

My AFIIs move to flank.  All VSDs make a full stop.

Not much excitement on turn 1.  My AFIIs came about to try and take his left flank, and all of his VSDs used navigate commands to go to a full stop.  Obviously delaying until my forces got into firing range to deny me the chance to maneuver to his rear.

Round 2:

Another round of waiting for the VSDs.  My AFIIs are able to have free reign of the Left Flank.
Again, nothing much happened.  My AFIIs were able to take the left flank without much issue, as his VSDs remained motionless, only banking a Navigate token as their only action.

Round 3:

End of Round 3

Round 3 was more of the same - no VSDs accelerated at all, though the Porkins managed to make it into position to shoot.  At the start of Round 4, the Vander jumped into position, taking the extreme Left Flank, and ready to move behind the VSDs when they move.

Round 4:

End of Round 4 - the Left flank had been turned, but the Vander was taking some damage.

His Right flank moved first, accelerating to speed 1 and finally beginning his movement.  This let me activate the Vander, and pour a double arc shot into the Left flank, which had not had a chance to speed up, giving me free shots without any tokens to mitigate them, and then ramming for an extra hit.

The next VSD on the right moved next, again allowing me to fire from the Porkins and a well timed Squadron command onto the Left-most VSD, scoring multiple hits through the shields, including a Blinded Gunner Crit from one of the X-Wings.

The VSDs continued to activate from Right to Left, finally ending with the Left-most VSD scoring a big hit on the Vander from his side arc, stripping a lot of the shields.

Round 5:

End of Turn 5.  One VSD is destroyed, but the Vander is in bad shape.

This time the left VSD went first, and taking another heavy side shot on the Vander.  The Vander then went next, re-positioning a squadron, raking the heavily damaged left VSD, and starting to fire on the next VSD in the order.

The far right VSD responds next, now out of position.  Darklighter activates second, finishing up the Leftmost VSD.

The newly leftmost VSD went next, again firing side arc into the Vander, finally scoring hull damage.  The Porkins then went, claiming some shield damage to the VSD.

Round 6:

With the Vander destroyed, it was up to squadrons to carry the day.
The now left-most VSD went first, repairing shields and finishing off the Vander with a brutal roll, but immediately suffered a massive strike from the Darklighter and Porkins.  With only 4 hull, and 1 rear shield left, it would be up to the squadrons to roll hot to save the day.

Rolling 1 crit (taken on rear shields, 2 misses, and 2 hits, it was up to Dinner Squadron to land a Structural Damage crit to win it (double hit would have been braced).


And so it ended, with an effective draw.  Dab drew the win, 98-86, and we both took away 5 points from the game.  The Darklighter Family Reunion was over.


I'm not sure I liked the entirety of Dab's strategy for this.  He just gave me the left flank hoping that I wouldn't be able to destroy too many of his ships in time.  In the end, some really hot rolls from his VSD's side arcs and some moderately poor attack rolls kept his damaged VSD limping along for the win, instead of being space dust and me picking up a 7-3 victory.  Plus, his Right flank was out of the fight the entire game - not sure if they were worried about the Hyperspace Assault popping behind them on that side, but they weren't able to effectively join the fight beyond Round 4 shooting once at the Vander.

On the other hand, I should have done more to join the conflict sooner.  Once I realized he was hanging on the edge of his deployment zone, I didn't fly my ships in at full speed, worried I'd not be able to turn in time - though I had plenty of chances to change my dials to maneuvers with Defense Liaisons.

Overall, it was an interesting game, and I'm sure I'll get my chance to try my hand against him again.

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