I’ve never hidden the fact I love Firesprays on this blog but since every wave has been released after the ship they have appeared to become less than optimal and there is a strong argument to me made that they are simply over costed.
The squad was as follows:
Boba Fett (39) – Slave 1 (0), Extra Munitions (2), Homing Missiles (5), 4-LOM (1), Guidance Chips (0), Adaptability (0), Glitterstim (2)
Kath Scarlett (38) – Veteran Instincts (1), Dengar (3), Engine Upgrade (4), Glitterstim (2)
I was very inspired to know someone in the X-wing community had got a double Firespray squad to successfully work at a competitive level and of course if I didn’t already have enough squads to try out this certainly add something else to that list. I set out to hopefully find some answers and through the aid of the FFG community managed to track down the player.
Nino was very helpful and the language barrier was pretty easy to deal with as his English skills were very good and he gave a great overview of the list and has given me a lot to think about. He's been playing for almost 3 years and favours the Empire.
Jimmy - When did you realise that dual Firespray's would work in your meta?
Nino - Well it began only with scum Boba Fett long ago. When glitterstim was released, I realised that Boba could be a real pain against lists of 3+ ships if played correctly, and used him several times. It came to my mind that it's only weak spot was the crew slot, in which he didn't have something really scary.
Tactician was somewhat solid, but he lacked the damage output when at range 2-3. Then the Jumpmaster and the Misthunter were released, and with them an incredible team of crew members. Some of them really solid like Dengar who was gold in a universe where unique pilots flourish. I tested him several times with an IG-88 and results were pleasant but still uncertain. After a second place finish I changed some basics of the list and decided to give a try to the second Firespray.
Jimmy - What is the basic deployment and mechanics behind the list?
Nino - The list finally came to a dual 9 pilot skill and 97 points bid. While Boba used to be the mobile one with the engine, time turned him to a missile carrier. Kath Scarlett became the obnoxious fast hunter with her amazing backwards firing arc. If you see the list you can see easily that Boba is a dedicated ace hunter. Having 4-LOM crew and homing missiles he denies the use of one evade token and a focus if needed making those almost guaranteed 3 hits and 1 critical completely lethal.
So deployment usually places Boba in a more centred position and Kath ready to run with engine and flank. If the enemy squad is somewhat slow or it can slow roll, then I'd block both of them until I see a good opportunity to start moving. Kath's speciality is to troll around hunting with both arcs, while she is less resilient than Boba, she isn't less dangerous.
Jimmy - How long did you practice with the list before the regionals?
Nino - It's been about two months. Several tournaments, with pretty good results.
Jimmy - Did you face the dreaded Triple Jumpmaster list? If not, what was your plan against this build?
Nino - Before the regional's, I played a 100 point squad, being Kath the missile carrier. She used K4 security droid and she shot her first missile before being blocked. That was extremely good against Jumpmasters since second turn when all Jumpmasters had a shot she bumped the first and got a target lock in a second one to shoot the second missile. Glitterstim helped a lot and the game was close to a 50-50. After a month triple Jumpmasters started fading. In the Tatooine Open there were quite a few, but they didn't go far because aces were taking the scene. Aces have good times against Jumpmasters when played well and that changed the meta. My list changed to be an ace counter with general strength. I assumed that a Jumpmaster list had a 75% to win against me but took the risk. I only faced one triple Jumpmaster in swiss and that was my only loss.
Jimmy - Do you see the list remaining strong for a period of time?
Nino - It's a very flexible list. It can adapt. It's strong, and almost always has pretty good movement alternatives. It suffers the most against the feared triple Jumpmaster but if you really hate losing against those you can leave Boba, and add an Aggressor with sensor jammer and glitterstim to mitigate the effect.
Jimmy - Is there anything you would change about the list at all?
Nino - After the Sevilla regional I'm parking both Firespray's for some time. I've always played defenders when they were bad and I want to play them now they're good. That said I think I've improved the list all I could have and since I'm not giving it too much thought afterwards I'd say that for me it's perfect.
Jimmy - Do you envision anyway to replicate this list to an Imperial version?
Nino - Shhhh that's my secret project, don't tell anyone!!! hahah. Imperial Firespray's lack scum crew, scum useful pilot abilities, and glitterstim which helps a lot. On the other hand a Agent Kallus crew can be very good in Kath or Boba. Missile carrier Boba is feasible even when his ability is that much worse than the scum version. A Veteran Instincts, Mangler Cannon, Agent Kallus, and Engine Upgrade Kath I can see being a control piece that can hurt aces, stressing them to shreds. Pair her with a Decimator or a missile Boba (Slave I allows the use of long range scanners, could be a choice).
Jimmy - Thank you very much for your time and the valued insight!
Nino - It's been a pleasure, and sorry for my English skills, since is obviously not my native language!
Thanks for reading as per usual and I hope this has given you some more insight into Firespray's as much as it has for me.