Saturday, September 16, 2017

Belated Island Games AAR

It's been almost a month, but I'm finally getting around to breaking down my fairly pitiful performance at Island Games. Spoiler: I hate Hammerheads.   

The Hammerhead pocket carriers didn't work for a number of reasons. First of all, Hammerheads live and die by speed adjustment to refine their attack angle. Having to spam squadron commands and keep a token makes that impossible without a Pelta bringing Entrapment Formation. Adding Cracken I thought would help, but ended up being far worse. Hammerheads just don't like sustained speed 3. The speed inflexibility itself isn't the entire problem, though. It would be something manageable if the Hammerhead was a little more durable.

However, the Hammerhead has proven to me that it is ludicrously fragile. If you hated on the Raider, you better be piling on this thing. The redirect is a bit of a cruel joke with such poor shielding. The lack of redundancy also hurts. The CR90 feels considerably more durable mainly because of the redundant evades. Unless you get really lucky at long range, the CR90 is going to cancel a die. The single accuracy at long range isn't as much of an ask, so my Hammerheads rarely got to use their evades.

I could work with either of these problems, but not both. I probably won't touch Hammerheads for a while, but rest assured it will not be as carriers ever again. Three games was more than enough. I might be willing to try a TFA wolfpack with ERs and OEs or maybe a group of TFO wolfpack with just ERs. I'm not keen to try the Scout version because the CR90 flies so much better for marginally more points.

The second problem with my Island Games list was Nora. I'm not sure the X-Wing swarm puts out enough ship damage to begin with (more on that in a second), but I'm certain Nora does not do 17 points worth of enhancement. Her ability doesn't trigger reliably enough to boost damage against ships in a meaningful way. Back when I could use double BCC to fish for crits, that might have been a different story. Now, though, I think I would rather have Dutch to ensure I win the squadron fight.

I should note this is the third time I've tried an X-Wing swarm. I'm 4-4 with it. Two of those lists were pretty flawed, so I'm curious how I would do if I went to a more orthodox method of carrier support. The old problem was durability, which is laughable now that Biggs is in the mix. The question now is whether they can do enough damage against ships on their own. Thanks to my heavy work schedule, I'm getting behind in testing out my closet of bonkers ideas, but here's another one to add to the mix:

X-Wing Swarm Reboot (400/400)
Assault Frigate Mk.II B (72 + 44)
+ General Dodonna (20)
+ Flight Commander (3)
+ Flight Controllers (6)
+ Electronic Countermeasures (7)
+ Gallant Haven (8)

MC30c Torpedo Frigate (63 + 25)
+ Ordnance Experts (4)
+ Assault Proton Torpedoes (5)
+ H9 Turbolasers (8)
+ Admonition (8)

GR-75 Medium Transports (18 + 8)
+ Bomber Command Center (8)

GR-75 Medium Transports (18 + 7)
+ Toryn Farr (7)

GR-75 Medium Transports (18 + 2)
+ Comms Net (2)

Biggs Darklighter (19)
Jan Ors (19)
Wedge Antilles (19)
"Dutch" Vander (16)
4 x X-wing Squadron (13)

Fighter Ambush
Most Wanted
Superior Positions


  1. This does not bode well for my plans to get Hammerheads. Though I have played around with the fleet builder. I'd either have a Torpedo Hammer with Concussion, or a Scout Hammer with Duel Turbolaser and Gunnery team.

    1. They're just not my style I think. They seem to be doing perfectly fine over at Can't Get My Ship Out. They definitely need to be fielded in numbers. You have to have at least two in a list. Those titles are the make or break for their utility, because they're overcosted (IMO) without the titles.

    2. I've got one crazy idea to try out before I post my hammerhead article, but it'll probably be up this week. They're very akin to Raiders, which, reading Eric's article about them helped me when starting out.

      I'm sorry that the pocket carriers idea didn't work for you, but I do appreciate your input on the subject. As for Norra, have you tried her with b wings? She shines with them I find.

    3. Yup. Hate her there too. I'd rather just have another B-Wing.

  2. Torpedo Hamerhead are great when used similar to rider imho. Keep the speed low and use them to catch opponent that try to speed they way out. Just put external rack on them and maybe organa task force if you got 3 of them.
    I went with two torpedo and one scoot with disposable capacitor and quad battery, the scoot can take long range shot at flotillas and try to go for an activation advantage. The torpedo add red dice too that are not to be disregard.
    Keep them in formation mouving slowly and they shine.
    Also Leia as admiral is a uge boost for them.

  3. sad to see a reversion back to the standard "more flotillas than actual ships," pattern.

    I fee like scout corvettes are useless since a TRC 90 is so much better for a minimal point difference.

    The Torp. Corvette actually does fill a role that is not already represented in the Rebel fleet so it bears examining. Raddus will probably help these little guys get into position. Just like the movie, I would expect them to be a good option to drop in out of hyperspace.

    The primary issue is their durability and the lack of a side arc. Unlike the TRC 90 these little guys can't still be effective as they orbit the main battle, they have to stick their nose right into it in order to make an impact.

    I have never had success with them as part of my main battle line, but have had some success with them as trailers. A MC80 Battle Cruiser can heard things with its arc back into them. They can't stand up to more than one round of trading fire with the big guys. D. Cap Vics still make them close to useless.

    1. Honestly I doubt I'm going to get around to running that new version. I hate flotillas more than most people, so running three makes my skin crawl. That list is more of an attempt to see if an X-Wing swarm will work than something I actually want to run. I've got another article coming shortly comparing my two potential Regionals lists. Both only have a single (begrudgingly added) flotilla.

  4. No one try Garels Honor?

    We had this with External Racks and both times it's caused serious pain to an ISD.

    1. I tried Garel`s Honour with a Rieekan fleet. I rammed a light carrier, crit: he lost one defense token. Then I got shot at long range by ISD II and got killed because of the damage I took from ramming :P
      IMO not worth 4 points.
      Also one Hammerhead Torpedo with extended racks is not really that good.