Finally I've got around to posting up the battle report using the squad I'd posted up earlier in the week 'Girl-Power' featuring Rey and Norra Wexley. The game against my usual sparring partner Todd (@RaesburnTodd) who was running the same Empire list featuring Rear Admiral Chiraneau and Major Stridan he used at the Civil War event back in March.
In part 3 of our deconstruction of X-Wing Worlds squads, we looked at the notorious Palp Aces. But for the final part of this series, it is back to the Rebels with an equally famous Fat Han build. It stepped away from the meta at some stage during the last few waves of releases, but it certainly has the limelight surging brightly upon it now that Thomas has paired an A-Wing ace with the "old" (or shouldn't that be "young?") Han himself.
Thomas Mooney - 2016 X-wing Top 4
If anyone ever asks for a user-friendly build for Rebels, then you can't look much further than some sort of outfitted YT-1300. With a forgiving manoeuvre dial, 360-degree firing arc, and plenty of slots for upgrades, this infamous smuggling ship is one of X-Wing's most popular, at least on the Rebels side. With both of his pilots working at pilot skill 9 and the squad totaling 97 points, Thomas has really opted for flexibility to ensure he gets the drop on other pilot skill 9 aces, such as Soontir Fel, Whisper, and Dengar, in the initiative bid.
Han Solo built in this configuration ensures a number of things. Firstly, damage output: whatever he is shooting at is going to get hit. Between his pilot ability and Predator, you won't need to be taking target locks or focus actions. Rather, you'll want to use the Engine Upgrade to get into a superior position or use the evade action as per the title. With re-rolls galore, backed up with Luke Skywalker, there isn't a great deal you will not be able to hit.
With the evade action, combined with C-3PO, the damage that this 1-agility based ship takes is severely mitigated. This is made obvious by how well Thomas placed at Worlds. Of course, large base ships need some sort of wingman and the man for the job comes down to Jake Farrell.
Jake Farrell can almost be considered the Rebel version of the Inquisitor, however he wants to stay at range 1 to not only get the maximum amount of red dice but also have a chance to unleash that 5 dice proton rocket. If he manages to sit outside of primary arc, autothrusters kicks in, making him a real thorn in the side of enemy ships.
With Veteran Instincts pushing Jake to pilot skill 9, there is a greater degree of flexibility to the squad in terms of who moves first to capitalise on any given situation. Both ships also have options to boost, furthering this flexibility.
What this A-wing lacks in sheer firepower it truly makes up for in finesse and action economy. Combined with Push the Limit, Jake Farrell can get away with 3 actions per turn, providing the first is a focus. This triggers a free boost or barrel roll, allowing him to get into a superior position attacking, or out of arc altogether. Then Push the Limit can be triggered allowing for a third action. Initially, I think an evade token would be the go-to, however once that initial joust is over with, a focus, boost and target lock at range 1 of an enemy is sure to wipe the smile off their face when those proton rockets come screaming in.
I do enjoy this squad because it goes back to the basics of X-wing. When you combine a classic arc dodger with a 360-degree firing arc ship, you have the basics of a successful list.
Whether it's Fat Han or RAC/Whisper, the key roles remain the same, and regardless of wargame genre, the hammer-and-anvil tactic is alive and kicking in X-wing.
So what are the keys to victory against a squad like this? Do you focus on the large based ship whilst Jake continually digs deeper? Perhaps dropping the arc dodger first is the way to go?
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Hardcore war gamer at heart and a huge fan of tabletop games. I use any excuse to get my family involved. Join me as I play and review games while trying not to epically fail.