I had been quite lucky during my self imposed geek exile that no-one had challenged me in the NAGA X-Wing League however events had caused me to slip down the rankings a bit and drop down to 6th position. Earlier in the month I had attempted to challenge Brent Jay who beat his first opponent and leapfrogged out of challenge range which left me with Mitchell Dunton to challenge. So I duly proposed a game, our first attempt got cancelled but last night we managed to finally get a table and get down to some Star Wars:X-wing action. It had been over 3 months since I last played and I was a little ring rusty. I proposed a 150pt game.
I took Scum and Villainy and hadn’t even played three of the ships that were in my list. I’d enjoyed moderate success previously (against Mitch ironically) with M3-A Scyk Interceptors although it was Kath Scarlett who won that day for me. Tonight I would try the IG-2000 Aggressors and a Y-Wing for the first time (and unpracticed) and a Scyk Interceptor. My list would be as follows:-
Kavil (32) Y-Wing (24), Autoblaster Turret (2), Unhinged Astromech (1), Veteran Instincts (1), Engine Upgrade (4)
IG88-D (46) Aggressor (36), Veteran Instincts (1), Fire-Control System (2), “Mangler” Cannon (4), Inertial Dampeners (1), IG-2000 (0), Autothrusters (2)
IG88-B (46) Aggressor (36), Veteran Instincts (1), Fire-Control System (2), “Mangler” Cannon (4), Inertial Dampeners (1), IG-2000 (0), Autothrusters (2)
Cartel Spacer (19) M3-A “Scyk” Interceptor (14), “Heavy Scyk” Interceptor (2), Ion Cannon (3)
My build was only at 143 points and sadly I did not realise this until this morning. This might have allowed me more points to upgrade Mangler Cannons to Heavy Laser Cannons or add Hot Shot Blasters to each of my Aggressors. Stupid me….missed a trick there and should have paid more attention.
I had no idea what Mitch would be playing but when i arrived I saw a very similar list across the table from me, almost identical:-
Syndicate Thug (24) x 2 Y-Wing (18), Ion Cannon Turret (5), Unhinged Astromech (1), BTL-A4 Y-Wing (0)
IG88-B (50) Aggressor (36), Veteran Instincts (1), Enhanced Scopes (1), Heavy Laser Cannon (7), “Hot Shot” Blaster (3), IG-2000 (0), Anti-Pursuit Lasers (2)
IG88-C (50) Aggressor (36), Veteran Instincts (1), Enhanced Scopes (1), Heavy Laser Cannon (7), “Hot Shot” Blaster (3), IG-2000 (0), Anti-Pursuit Lasers (2)
With both players ready and ships on table it was time to do battle in the manliest of contests……using plastic ships! We both setup. I had inititiave so my Cartel Spacer set-up first out on the right flank hoping to sweep in from out of arc and hit with his Ion Cannon. Next Mitch deployed both of his Syndicate Thugs in their Y-Wings who would fly down Mitch’s left flank to intercept my Scyk Interceptor. Then my Aggressors deployed at an angle opposite the debris field to maximise firing arcs. Then Mitch’s Aggressors set-up opposite the debris field to face my Aggressors. Finally at PS9 Kavil deployed last and took the my left flank to try and hit Mitch’s Aggressors in the flank or behind from close using his Engine Upgrade to boost. I’d try to take picture wherever I could but sometimes the heat of battle gets in the way and we forget. I know Craig Bean and James Hall were also taking pictures at NAGA so they may have captured some of the action.
At the end of turn 1 both of Mitch’s aggressors had turned towards Kavil and entered the Debris field. Mine had done so too but trying to keep Mitch’s ships at R3. My Cartel Spacer and Mitch’s Y-Wings postured on my right flank not willing to give too much away.
Kavil and my Agressors managed to strip some shields away on Mitch’s Aggressors and he returned the favour. Mitch seemed as fearful of Kavil this time as he was of Serissu the last time and seemed determined to destroy his Y-Wing quickly. Kavil was sadly a) inneffective at range and b) inefficient in arc so I had to close and get into the flanks and rear of Mitch’s Aggressors. Mitch had equipped his Aggressors with 360 firing Hot Shot Blasters which would make sneaking past them prohibitively difficult. Had I remembered I was way under the 150pt limit I may have equipped them too but I simply missed it.
The battle quickly degenerated into a dogfight in the debris field between the Aggressors. One of Mitch’s Sengoor Looped out of the field allowing Kavil to squeeze between them and catch him at R1. My Aggressors both brought wapons to bear on Mitch’s Aggressor in the debris field. Mitch had equipped his Aggressors with Enhanced Scopes and Anti-Pursuit Lasers which meant he was very happy to see ships bumping as he would move first and cause damage when a ship bumped his. Still now knowing what my Cartel Spacer would do Mitch was forced to play cautiously with his Y-Wings and cover both the flank and the flank of his Aggressor in the debris field.
Kavil did a number of Mitch’s Aggressor stripping 3 shields off it before it returned the favour. Of my two Aggressors only 1 had a shot thanks to bump so it tore into the shields of Mitch’s second Aggressor in the centre. The other could have benefited from a Hot Shot Blaster at this point to help my Cartel Spacer by firing on the Syndicate Thug covering Mitch’s left flank. Sadly with no 360 arc shot it was unable to fire. The Cartel Spacer attempted to fire his Ion Cannon but missed horifically (this would be a theme of my firing tonight). Mitch’s loadout on his Y-Wings made them very punchy when attacking in their forward arc and two shots later had stripped the shields off my Cartel Spacer and the last shields off one of my Aggressors.
One of Mitch’s Aggressors fled the debris field attempting to come about and bring weapons to bear whilst the other re-entered having Sengoor Looped last turn to chase Kavil. Both Y-Wings entered the field and Kavil attempted to come about whilst keeping Mitch’s Aggressor close for a 360 shot with his Autoblaster Turret to get a shot on Mitch’s Agressor. One of my Aggressors held position by discarding its Inertial Dampeners hoping for a good shot on Mitch’s Aggressor in the debris field.
With so many Aggressors on the mat it was starting to get confusing and I must admit to putting my dial against the wrong ship on more than one occasion. The ring rustiness was beginning to show as Mitch’s experience flying the difficult Aggressors was evident. Those Enhanced Scopes were making my life very very difficult as everywhere I wanted to be Mitch’s ship was already there.
Shield tokens were traded, one of Mitch’s Aggressors started to take some Crits and damage and Mitch’s Y-Wings dispatched my limping useless inneffectual Cartel Spacer.
My twin Aggressors pulled in behind Mitch’s Y-Wing and left it in a very bad position ready to fir upon it. Kavil bumped into Mitch’s chasing Aggressor stopping it from firing at him. Mitch’s remaining Aggressor and Y-Wing were busy maneuveuring around the debris field to return to the fight.
In this turn I rather foolishly discarded the Inertial Dampeners on my Aggressor to remain still clocking up a stress token and a second one for remaining in a debris field. I also took a damage. This was very stupid in hindsight! It also allowed Mitch’s second Aggressor to sweep in from outside and have a free shot into the rear of my Aggressor in the debris field. My second Aggressor was off chasing a Y-Wing as Kavil closed on it chasing Mitch’s second Aggressor and his badly damaged Y-Wing from the assault my Aggressors gave it last turn. By the end of turn 5 Mitch’s limping y-Wing had been dispatched by the combined firepower of Kavil & my Aggressor but Kavil had also been Ioned by the double attacking Y-Wing leaving him vulnerable next turn as Mitch knew exactly where he would be. Mitch’s Aggressor obsessed with Kavil couldn’t finish him off as they were touching but the Anti-Pusuit Lasers did hit Kavil. This last Aggressor did manage to finish off my second Aggressor which was badly damaged already.
My sole remaining Aggressor had only taken damage from Anti-Pursuit Lasers and Debris and seemed to have the luck of the evade dice on its side. It had also been quite lucky keeping Micth’s ships at R2 or more or out of arc so was able to use its Autothrusters when attacked. It now had a stack of Stress tokens and Mitch was joking that Tycho was in the cockpit. I was very limited in what maneuveurs I could perform and certainly wouldn’t be taking any actions anytime soon. My only realistic choice was to make a run for it and hope that I could keep Mitch’s ships at R2 or out of arc. This Benny Hill-esque chase lasted another three round whilst I managed to clear all my Stress tokens. Every shot Mitch’s ships poured into my Aggressor was shrugged off and despite the absolute barnstormer of a game Mitch simply couldnt dispatch this last ship. All of his were now unshielded and all damaged in some way. it had been a real slugfest of a dogfight but now my time was done. It was only a matter of time before Mitch’s superior numbers overwhelmed me. I would continue to run and hope to evade long enough to drop one maybe two of his ships.
Having evaded for three more turns and cleared all my stress tokens I was now left facing a tight turn to remain on the board. It would need to be a Hard 2 but all of Mitch’s ships moved first. The only ship was worried about was the Aggressor that was attempting to turn inside my Aggressor and force me off the gaming mat. I still had a slim chance that my maneuveur would leave me ok if I bumped. Sadly with 2 Shields and 4 Hull remaining following a bump the rear left corner of my Aggressors baseplate was outside the gaming area and I had lost due to fleeing the field.
Congratulations Mitch on a great victory. That’s 1 win each now….next time will be the decider! I hadn’t lost any League position as Mitch was above me but I would need some serious game time if I was going to continue to play Scum. I need some practice anyways simply to keep up with the players in the League. I think this leaves my record as 5 wins to 3 losses.
I honestly hadnt expected Mitch to field the same Aggressors as he had when I defeated him before and secretly thought if I could beat him with Aggressors (the build he’d lost to me with previously) then not only would I advance in league position but it would be a nicer win too. Fair play though, Mitch came storming back and flew those Aggressors very very well. the build was solid and his superior experience in the game and with those ships certainly showed.
Onwards and upwards and onto the next challenge.