Victorian X-Wing Regionals

After having attended the Tasmanian Regionals and making it to the final table in a roundabout fashion, I was a lot less nervous about the Victorian Regionals. That said, there was a lot of angst about one topic in particular in the lead up to the event… what list to fly?!?

My List

In the last week before the event I had a bit of a crisis around what to fly at the Victorian regionals. If you’ve read my post about the Tasmanian one, you’ll know that I flew Dengar and Asajj in that one and it went pretty well. After flying those ships for so long though, I was really considering trying something new and seeing how it went. I have always liked flying the Millennium Falcon, with either Rey or Han as pilot, so I thought I would try a few things and see how it went. I tried a few various combinations of ships with Rey, including a light Miranda, and with Rex and Ezra (with snapshot and stress bot, I’ll call it Strezra from here on), but in the end I settled on Rey and Lowhhrick.

Rey (YT-1300)
Kanan Jarrus
Engine Upgrade
Millennium Falcon (sloop title)
Ship total: 62

Lowhhrick (Auzituck Gunship)
Ship total: 37

While I have a lot of experience with the Millennium Falcon, I first flew the Auzituck gunship only the Monday before the event, and had a grand total of 4 games with it when the Regional started on Saturday. The archetype is similar to Dengar Asajj with a big base white slooping hard hitting ship with actionless dice mods (K4 and Expertise vs Finn/Rey and Expertise) and a supporting ship that’s quite hard to kill. Rey and Lowhhrick work better together in the early game compared to Dengar Asajj, while Asajj only really shines when she’s away from her partner and getting Lone Wolf rerolls.

The Tournament

The Victorian X-Wing Regionals were hosted by General Games and played at the Monash University Caulfield Campus on April 7-8. There were 84 registered players and a number of people using store championship byes, so the tournament structure was 6 rounds of Swiss on Day 1, then the top 16 cut on Day 2. On Day 2 there would also be a side event for those who didn’t make the cut or were knocked out in the top 16.

Round 1: Brett Vesty

My first round was against a local player from the stores that I mostly play at (Good Games Box Hill and Next Level Games Ringwood), flying an Imperial list with Backdraft, Kylo Ren in the TIE Silencer, and Epsilon Ace. It’s a pretty good list that he has been practicing for a while, I had played against him twice with this list when I was flying Dengar Asajj, and we’d won one each.

My game plan here was to try and take out one ship at a time, focus it down and hopefully win the damage trade, relying on Lowhhrick/Reinforce, C-3PO, and Rey rerolls to mitigate some of the damage.

The opening engagement had all ships shooting each other at range 3, and the plan worked out pretty well with me taking only one shield on Rey, while taking all three shields off Backdraft. The following turn I managed to get Backdraft down to 1 hull, but then he disengaged. Instead of trying to chase it through the rocks, I switched targets to Epsilon Ace, managed to get both my ships with Range 1 shots, and deleted him in one turn. I then chased down and killed Kylo (admittedly thanks to blanking out on both the original roll and a title reroll on defence), before finally taking out Backdraft.

Final Result: Win, 100:31 (lost half points on Rey)

Round 2: Aaron Harrison

Aaron was running Rey, Rex, and Strezra. As soon as I saw I knew this was going to be a tough ask, because stress shuts down expertise on both of my ships, and also stops me using reinforce if Lowhhrick becomes double stressed, which makes it him much more squishy. My plan here was to hopefully kill Rex in the first engagement to prevent the suppressive fire condition, then kill Strezra pretty quick, and then get to work on Rey. Unfortunately the plan didn’t work out so well for me, Rex didn’t die in the first go, and by the time I killed him both my ships were stressed, and it was an uphill battle that I eventually lost, his Rey had all the dice mods while mine didn’t.

On reflection I think the better plan is kill Strezra quickly, then focus down Rey, but that’s the benefit of hindsight.

Final Result: Lost, 45:100 (I got Rex and half points on Rey)

Round 3: Adam Sherman

Adam was running Dengar and Asajj, the exact same list I took to the Tasmanian Regionals. Given the amount of times I’ve played this list, I knew the game plan is kill Dengar quickly, then work on Asajj.

The first part of the plan worked out well, I took out Dengar while both my ships were still alive, then I switched to Asajj. I started chipping away at her, but then I made a mistake – I got greedy. I should have stuck with my list synergy and kept Rey within Range 1 of Lowhhrick to use his ability, but I boosted forward to try and get a better shot. I got the shot, but I took a fair bit of damage in return. The next turn, I suspected Asajj was going to go forward quite fast, but she didn’t… and it left my Rey facing the wrong way after my move. I tried to kill Asajj with a Range 1 out of arc shot, but only got two hits, when I really needed a third to kill Asajj. Rey died from the return shot, leaving a 1 hull Asajj chasing a 5 hull Lowhhrick for the game.

For anyone who has played against Asajj with Latts, you get one evade from evade action, one evade from removing a stress which you gave to your opponent, and the stress shuts down Lowhhrick’s Expertise, so less hits are coming her way anyway. Lowhhrick in return has C-3PO and Reinforce, so Asajj needed at least 3 hits to get damage through.

There was one turn I made a huge gamble… instead of taking reinforce, I took a focus token, hoping to use it to mod my attack to get the killing blow, hoping that my 5 hull was enough to survive her attack first. Unfortunately Asajj turned the other way and Lowhhrick didn’t even get to shoot! Without reinforce, Lowhhrick got punished, and got taken down to 1 hull!

The chase was on at this point, to see who could do the final damage! 1 hull Asajj vs 1 hull Lowhhrick! The game eventually went to time, giving me the win with more points still left on the board.

Final Result: Win, 76:62

Round 4: Nathan Flanders

Nathan was running Rey and Miranda, a similar list to the one I tried when deciding what to fly for the tournament. My plan here was to either delete Miranda quickly, or focus down Rey, depending on which target got presented in the first engagement. I knew that I had to get rid of one of his ships while both of mine were still alive, even if it was only for one turn, in order to win.

Rey was the best target presented to me, and with my Rey and Lowhhrick both getting shots on, I was winning the damage race initially, so it looked pretty good for me. Unfortunately it didn’t continue, a bit of a damage swing saw us trade Rey’s in the same turn, leaving Lowhhrick chasing down Miranda. Miranda eventually finished off Lowhhrick, when she was on 3 hull herself.

Final Result: Lost, 59:100

Round 5: James Brett

James is another local player I have played a few times, but the list was new. He was flying Ketsu w/ VI, Dengar crew, Glitterstim, and title, alongside 3 Z-95s with Harpoon missiles and Guidance Chips.

I’m pretty comfortable setting up against harpoon carriers, the trick is to get in Range 1, or even bump one to prevent the shot. I set up to joust his list with this in mind, and the opening engagement went pretty close to plan… except I forgot one thing. Ketsu got to tractor beam Lowhhrick out to Range 2 of one of the Z-95s, and with no green dice I couldn’t use C-3PO either, so between taking a harpoon and some shots from another Z-95, and from Ketsu, Lowhhrick wasn’t looking too good after the first round of shooting.

It wasn’t long before Lowhhrick died, but in the meantime Rey had been putting in work taking out Z’s, and eventually killing Ketsu as well.

Final Result: Win, 100:37

Round 6: Callum Watson

So at this point I’m 3-2, and either way this game goes I’m going to be pretty happy with the outcome, it’s been a big day of X-Wing so far but hugely fun.

Callum is another Melbourne player, and he was running Nym and Asajj. During the obstacle placement, most of the obstacles got put into my left corner. I set up Lowhhrick on the opposite side in the clear, with the thought that he either needs to joust me, or run through the obstacles. Callum sets up Asajj on the other side on the outside lane, but with the obstacles there’s no really good spot to turn in, so I know he’s going to be coming all the way down that side of the board. I set up Rey next to Lowhhrick thinking I’ll just stay in the clear and let him come to me. Nym got placed next to Asajj, so we’re starting diagonally opposite each other.

The first few turns I slow roll both my ships straight ahead, thinking when he makes the turn in, I’ll do the same, making Lowhhrick do a 2 hard, Rey doing a 3 sloop, and then I’ll be facing the right way for an engagement. Callum keeps coming down the far side of the board as expected, and we both make the turns in pretty much as I expected.

Here is where my plan unravels though. I’m not the most patient of X-Wing players, my games hardly ever go to time because of it. I see Nym and Asajj having to come through the rocks, and I want to pounce. So I move Lowhhrick fast and even boost Rey forward to get a shot on Asajj as she comes round the last rock…

This was a bad mistake. The following turn Nym gets to Trajectory Simulator a bomb that hits both my ships, followed up by a Harpoon into Lowhhrick, and I’m in a terrible position. Asajj gets some good shots off, the harpoon triggers for another damage on both my ships (and one on Asajj!). The following turn Rey doesn’t have any good moves and I land on a rock… no shots for me. Lowhhrick gets eaten in the turn, and it was a very slippery slope down to defeat for me from there.

Final Result: Lost, 0:100

So at the end of the day I am 49th out of a field of 84 with a 3-3 record. I’m actually pretty happy with that, I learnt some lessons from my games, and overall it was a hugely enjoyable event. A few of my mates made 4-2, and one even made it into the top 16 cut, so as a team we did pretty well!

The Side Event

I came back the following day to support my teammate in the top 16, and to participate in the side event. I took the same list to the side tournament, I considered switching it up, but in the end I just took all of my same stuff again instead of having to reorganise everything, the list is fun to fly and I am still keen to see if I can get better with it.

There ended up being 20 registered players in the side tournament, so it was going to be 4 rounds of Swiss.

Round 1: Christopher Dunn

In the first round I was facing up against 3bQD. The Nu gunboats had Long Range Scanners instead of Guidance Chips, meaning they could get the target locks they needed which made them a little more scary in the initial joust, but the missiles would be slightly less deadly.

I’ve had a lot of practice against similar lists (including against James Brett’s scum version yesterday), so I stuck to my plan and set up for the joust. I managed to get the engagement I was looking for, but fired at Quickdraw with Range 3 shots to get some damage on when I was more likely to be able to evade the return shots. Rey did take one Harpoon, and lost 3 shields, but I wasn’t too concerned. Following the first engagement, I managed to continue the dream with a block on Quickdraw with Lowhhrick when Rey had a shot, so she wasn’t around for much longer.

After that it was a matter of chasing down gunboats. Only one managed to fire another harpoon, but Lowhhrick managed to avoid getting hit at all. The harpoon had 3 hits after the reroll (lucky for me), and I got greedy with C-3PO and called 1 evade, got it so added the second from C-3PO, and with reinforce managed to not take any damage. It wasn’t long before I had chased them all down.

Final Result: Win, 100:0

Round 2: Nick Hendley

Nick changed up his list from the main event, and today was running Brobots, with IG-88C having an HLC while B had a Mangler Cannon.

I’ve never flown against Brobots before, but I knew that with 3 green dice, autothrusters, and an evade token they were going to be pretty tough.

We ended up setting up diagonally opposite, but due to the asteroid placement he had to split up the ships on the turn in for the engagement. I singled out one ship, and over a couple of turns took it out pretty quickly, before switching targets to the other. Nick ended up conceding the game when his remaining ship was facing the wrong way with Rey behind and Lowhhrick making the turn around.

Final Result: Win, 100:0

Round 3: Shannon Rios

Shannon also changed up his list from Palp Aces the previous day, swapping out Countess Ryad for an Upsilon shuttle carrying Vader and Kylo, alongside Quickdraw and an OGP Palpmobile.

The Upsilon can hit very hard with it’s 4 dice primary, so it’s not one you want to be stuck in front of. I managed to get the engagement I was looking for with Rey dodging the arcs of both shuttles, and Lowhhrick going to take a few hits, but unlikely to be wiped out immediately. From then on I managed to keep dodging arcs with Rey, took out Quickdraw, lost Lowhhrick in doing so, but then chased down the shuttles for the win

Final Result: Win, 100:37

Round 4: Robert Eyles

Robert was bringing back the TIE Crack Swarm! His swarm included Howlrunner, Zeta Leader in a TIE/fo, and 4x Black Squadron Pilots, with all 6 ships having Crack Shot. He’d gone 4-2 in the main event, and was the other 3-0 player today. I was 99 points while his swarm was 100, so I gave him initiative.

I’ve never flown against it but thought I’d stick to my opening which works for me and see how it goes. We both slow rolled a bit in the first two turns before the engagement. He booted all 6 ships with a 5 straight at me, and caught Lowhhrick with a bump (I did a two straight, should have done a 1). I did manage to get Rey perfectly positioned with a sloop to the side of the swarm so she was out of arc of all of them. I managed to kill one of the TIEs that had a R1 shot on Lowhhrick before it got a chance to fire, but between Zeta Ace, Howlrunner, and another TIE, Lowhhrick was hurting after that first engagement without reinforce.

The best move for the TIEs after that was a K turn, but Zeta Leader was stressed so that was at least one ship I didn’t need to worry about. I managed to get a bump on one with Rey, and deleted another with a R1 shot, so there was 3 shots about to come back at me. The first was a R1 on Rey, 3 hits using a focus token, and I managed to get two evades with the Rey rerolls and Finn, and then spent Lowhhrick’s reinforce for the third. This was a critical mistake however, as the next two TIEs actually had a Range 3 shot on him, and enough damage was rolled to kill him!

After Lowhhrick was removed, it was still Rey vs 4 TIEs including Howlrunner and Zeta Leader. I needed to make sure I was getting good shots on one, hoping to PS kill anything (except Howlrunner who was getting to shoot first). I managed to get bumps on Howrunner a couple of turns which meant she wasn’t shooting at me, while I shot and killed the other ships one by one, before finally killing Howlrunner. There was still one damaged Black TIE on the board at this stage, but the result was a pretty forgone conclusion with Rey moving second, having engine upgrade, and the dice mods from Finn, Rey rerolls, and Expertise, without needed an action.

Final Result: Win, 100:68 (lost Lowhhrick and half on Rey)

For winning the side event I received a spot gloss Lothal Rebel/Baron of the Empire card along with some others including the Father’s Day Luke/Vader double sided card, so maybe I should be that guy and play Ghost Fenn next…

It turns out that the identical Rey Lowhhrick list won both the Regional (with David Leslie taking out the final against Darby Maling flying Dash Miranda) and the Side Event!

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