The Current State of X-Wing

So it’s been a while now since the Second Edition announcement for X-Wing, and I thought I would just post some of the thoughts from our group.

Reactions

The general feeling I’m getting from people in our local area about Second Edition is almost universally positive now. There is still some lingering saltiness about the cost of conversion, but this has been tempered by the quality of life changes that are coming to the game now that we have more information about the changes and the strategy behind them.

There have been quite a few people who have now decided that they’re not going to try and convert all of their factions, they’re going to pick one or two factions and go with those, and ditch the rest. These are generally people that only played one faction anyway, but had to buy the ships for the upgrades. Our very own Sentinel is a hardcore Imperial player, and he’s pretty happy being able to double down on the Empire ships and dedicate to the faction.

Unfortunately there have been a few people who have decided that this is the time to get out of the game. These people seem to be the very occasional players without large collections that don’t really have the time for the game anymore, and the new edition announcement has been the impetus for them finally deciding to get rid of the game.

This has been a bit of a bonanza for some new people wanting to get into the game however, as they’ve been able to pick up ships for a faction pretty cheaply, with the plan to get a core set and a  conversion kit for that faction, and they’re going to be hitting the ground running with Second Edition.

Motivation

I have to admit that my motivation for playing X-Wing has dropped off significantly since the announcement for Second Edition. After reaching 100 Games of X-Wing in April, I’ve only played about 25 games since. I’m not alone in this either, Silver Petey is another one from our group who feels the same, and I don’t think he’s played at all since the announcement.

It’s not that we don’t like the game, it’s just that we can’t wait for Second Edition, we want it now! When I have to deal with infinite bombs, Miranda with TLT, and all the other things that aren’t going to exist in Second Edition, it really makes me think about how unfun some of those items are, and I just don’t want to bother with them now that I know they aren’t going to be a problem anymore. That’s not to say that Second Edition is going to be free of powerful items and combos, but the ability to dynamically control these through the app, and the strategic direction the developers have articulated since the announcement make me feel like these sorts of outlier issues will be far less damaging to the overall health of the game than they are now.

And it seems like it’s not just our immediate group that feels this way. Last week there was an X-Wing tournament on at our local game store, and one of the guys who usually always participates was there… but he was playing Destiny, not X-Wing. When I asked him why, he said all the changes that are coming in Second Edition align with what he likes about the game, and he is just going to take a bit of a break to do other things in the meantime until it drops, then he’s going to be right back into the thick of it.

He’s not alone in trying other things in the meantime, at least a third of our Black Havoc gaming group have started up with Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire… including myself! There will be another article about Shadespire that I’ll write in future, I’m really enjoying that game (and I won a store championship for that too!).

That said, the situation has led me to fly lists recently that I would otherwise not even have bothered to fly. For example, I flew double firesprays (Scum Kath and Boba) for a couple of weeks, and lost every game but had great fun doing it. There’s a few more things I’m going to give a whirl before Second Edition comes, mostly related to the Wave 14 content that’s just landed, more on that later.

Store Champions Debacle

On top of the motivational ebb, angst, and trepidation from some quarters about Second Edition, there has been a monumental failure in regards to supporting the X-Wing community in Australia.

Essentially the only distributor for Organised Play kits in Australia failed to order any store championship kits by the deadline for ANY of the FFG Star Wars games… that’s right, a whole continent with NO STORE CHAMPIONSHIPS! You can read some information about it here.

Luckily FFG have done us a favour and managed to scrounge up some kits that they have supplied to the stores, but it means that most states only have ONE store championship for the whole state for each of the games. Sydney and Melbourne have managed to get two or three each for X-Wing, however this is a massive drop compared to the number that were run last year.

These store championships are probably going to have the numbers and competitiveness usually only seen for Regionals, but without the prizes to match, so there’s going to be a lot of people that don’t even get the participation prize because so many people want to compete.

Luckily one of the stores that was chosen to host a Store Championship is the one that I won last year, so I will be able to challenge for my title. Given my lack of play time and lower motivation leading into it though, I don’t really rate my chances at all, but I am at least hoping I will be one of the ones walking away with a Second Edition Juke card…

Wave 14

One saving grace for the dying days of First Edition has been the release of the Wave 14 kits. X-Wings, U-Wings, and TIE Reapers are everywhere right now, and it’s pretty fun. We’ve been seeing people fly all kinds of stuff with these, and I’ve noticed that a lot of people are giving the new ships a fly in tournaments and forgetting about all the toxic stuff.

The list I am running is below, I’m really liking the synergy between the Two-Tubes brothers.

Tubular (99)

•Benthic Two Tubes (32) – U-Wing Fire Control System (2), Renegade Refit (-2), Recon Specialist (3), •Jan Ors (2), Pivot Wing (0), Tactical Jammer (1), Anti-Pursuit Lasers (2)

•Edrio Two Tubes (25) – X-Wing (T-65) Predator (2), R2 Astromech (1), Renegade Refit (-2), Servomotor S-foils (0), Integrated Astromech (0)

Cavern Angels Zealot (21) – X-Wing (T-65) Crack Shot (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Renegade Refit (-2), Integrated Astromech (0), Servomotor S-foils (0)

Cavern Angels Zealot (21) – X-Wing (T-65) Crack Shot (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Renegade Refit (-2), Integrated Astromech (0), Servomotor S-foils (0)

Conclusion

Well there you have it, my thoughts on the current state of play that we’re seeing in our local meta. It seems like most people are stopping to take a breath before Second Edition hits, there’s a lot of hype for it and hopefully we’ll all get stuck back in and enjoy the changes to the game!

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