Store Champion Battle Report: Battling a Ghost… and not the king you are thinking of.
by midwestwargaming · Published · Updated
This battle report is authored by Wade Author Stover III who was kind enough to let me share it. I attended the same store championship as Wade but my performance does not warrant a tournament report 😛
I went to a my second ever store championship this weekend. My first SC was about 6 weeks ago, where I took 3 auto blaster K-wings, and an Ion Stress-bot. I went 2-2 in that first one, loosing twice to the exact same Dash-Corran list. After that tourney, I really wanted to work on a list that would fare better in the our meta (and that had an advantage against Dash-Corran). I spent the next 6 weeks consuming every piece of X-wing content I could get my hands on. Podcasts, Youtube, articles, etc. I don’t remember when exactly when I decided on Fat Han, but I figured it was a good choice for our meta, especially when pairing him with some stress control. I played a bunch of games on Vassal and settled on the following:
Han Solo: MF title, C3PO, Chewbacca, Predator, Engine Upgrade
Gold Squadron: TLT, BTL-A4, R3-A2
And here is how my day went. 27 players, 5 rounds with cut to top 4.
Round 1 – Alan
2x Gray Squadron: TLT, Proxy mines, 1 with R3-A2 & BTL-A4
Dutch Vander: TLT, Proxy mines
I don’t remember exactly how Alan had all of his Ys built out as he had a couple different droids thrown in, but I was a bit nervous staring down 3 TLT Ys. My plan would have been to try to get behind them with Han, but, you know, proxy mines. We each brought the largest rocks, and we made a nice cluster in the middle. He set his ships in formation in the top right, and I don’t recall exactly where I started. I drew him in toward my side of the map, and was able get him to distribute his fire enough to come away with the win, without him ever being in position to drop a mine on me to boot.
Win: 100 to 0
Round 2 – Caleb
Soontir Fel: PTL, Title, Autothrusters, Stealth Device
Omega Leader: Comm Relay, Juke
Vader: VI, ATC, Title, Prockets, Engine Upgrade
Caleb was one of the first people I ever played when I started playing at our local store about a year ago. One of the nicest guys I know and a great player. He is honestly part of what drew me into the local scene, so I was excited and nervous to play against him. We were both at 99, and he won the dice roll to pass me initiative. I started with my Z and Y in the bottom left, angled toward the middle of the map, with Han in the middle pointing straight in. Caleb started with Omega and Vader across from my Y and Z, and Soontir toward the middle across from Han. I went right with all my ships, as did he, gunning for Han. After moving toward the right edge of the map, Han turned in toward the middle. Soontir and Han traded pop shots. Next round, I had Han do a hard 3 bank into the middle of the map straight at Soontir, knowing that he would either have to fly past me and out of the fight, or risk bumping into Han with the Stress Bot in flanking position. He did a 4 straight, clearing Han. That same round Vader rushed into range one of Han, launching his Prockets. 5 hits to my 3PO’d 1 evade, 4 shields gone. Han shot back, and between focus and Predator I landed 4 hits on Vader. I’m pretty sure he blanked out, going down to 1 hull. Between my Z and Y, he was dead by the end of the round. Then it got good, well, for me at least. His Soontir proceeded to loop back into the fight, flanking my Y and stripping it’s shields. I was able to make my Y stand still by bumping unto the back of my Z, causing Soontir to bump into my Y. No shot for Han though. Next round, my Y moves one forward, with Soontir doing a hard turn in front of him to stay in the fight and pursue Han and my Z. Since he didn’t have any good boost or barrel roll options, he took a Focus, which he used to deal damage to my Z. He decided not to use Push the Limit since he was likely to take a Stress from my Y. Now the stressed Y gets to shoot. Natural primary roll: hit, hit, crit. And Soontir blanks out. Boom. Omega leader falls shortly after. Some timely dice definitely helped me here.
Round 3 – Zack
I did a similar setup to the last match with my Y and Z in the bottom left corner, angled toward the middle of the map. He lined up across from me in the upper left corner, and I dropped Han in the middle on my side, pointing toward the center. Just like last game, I moved all my ships to the right. He started with 1 forwards, then went to my right once he saw that was where my crew was moving. Once Han got to the far right side, I had him K turn and head back to where he started. My Y and Z turned in through some asteroids and I managed to trade them for one of his Bs. Han did some fancy dancing between the rocks, and managed to pick off all but one of his B-wings before we went to time.
Round 4 – Marshall
Bossk: VI, K4, Engine, Tactician, Feedback Array
Kath: VI,HLC, K4, Engine
With Han being at PS9, this was one game where I was glad to be at 99 pts. Marshall being at 100, I gave him the initiative so I could move after Bossk and Kath. Once again I set up with my Y and Z on the left and Han in the middle. He had Bossk across from my small ships, and Kath across from Han. I started moving my Y and Z to the right per usual, then turned in to engage his charging ships. Han started off going for Kath. Kath started moving behind Bossk, so Han broke off of Kath and sat behind Bossk. After predicting a hard stop with Bossk, Han was able to finish him off the next round. Just before that I caught a lucky break when my 1 health Y was just out of arc of Bossk, allowing the Y to fling some stress at Kath, who was out of position while turning around a rock in the lower right corner. With Bossk now off the board, Han was able to dance around Kath enough to take her out and get the win.
Round 5 – Doug Kinney / Hothie / The Ghost World Championships Past
Doug came out of retirement to come troll us all with this Wave 1 tie swarm. Yes, there was already a post about Doug’s list, but I’ll rehash. The only non-wave 1 aspect of his list was that he brought debris instead of asteroids.
2x Academy Pilots
I used my tried and true setup with the Y and Z to the left, and Han toward the middle. Doug set up in two bunches pointing toward the middle of the map. I gave Doug the initiative, and we ended up with asteroids and debris along my side and the right side of the map. My squad move right, and he raced over to my side, swarming my Y and Z while Han looped around one of the rocks and took pop shots at his squad. I think I traded my Y and Z for one tie. Not good. Han then proceeded to run away from his squad for the next 45 minutes, dodging a couple of blocks by the narrowest of margins. We went to time and he still had 4 ties on the board.
I had done enough to make top 4 as the second seed. Honestly, I was pretty happy to make it this far, being only my second store championship, but I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel. Top 4 here we come!
Top 4 – Mitchell
Palob: TLT, Moldy Crow, Expert Handling, Tacticitian (I think?)
Guri: Autothrusters, Predator
Talonbane Cobra: Expert Handling, Glitterstim
I did my usual setup with the Y and Z in the corner and Han toward the middle. He had Guri and Palob toward my left, and Talonbane off to my right. This time I sent the Y and Z straight up the edge of the board toward Guri. Guri turned in toward Han, and the Y was able to stay behind Guri for the rest of the game, rendering him ineffective. Talobane got double stressed as well (from Glitter and a single stress-bot shot) and was torn apart by Han a turn or two later. Guri eventually succumbed to the stress bot, and it was a matter of time hunting down Palob.
I made sure to take the init this time and had a better asteroid placement, with a cluster in the middle and debris spread out along my side. I started with Han toward center, and my Y and Z in the right corner. Doug used the exact same starting position as our previous game. Once dials were revealed he sent one group of ties toward my Y and Z, and the other toward Han. Han started straight toward the center of the map, then peeled off to the left to try to get around his ties. Doug managed a couple blocks on Han, but I miraculously had a round were none of his ties had shots on my ships. It felt like could have been a turning point, in my favor, but I was unable to push through enough damage to drop his ships as quickly as I needed. A couple rounds later, my Y and Z were gone and Han was trying to pivot around 3 ties. I had to dispatch Chewbacca to eat a double crit shot, and the next round took structural damage (reduce agility by 1), leaving Han at one hull, zero agility and making C3PO useless. I ended up in the top right corner of the map with 3 ties on my tail, and one lollygagging at the bottom of the map. I did a 3 bank toward the edge of the map expecting a block from a 2 hull Howlrunner if I tried a hard turn. Instead, Howl moved to keep arc to cover my 3 bank + boost, since I had to boost to escape the other two arcs. My only shot here was to PS kill howl. I rolled two hits. Predator … blank. Howl rolls his 3 dice and gets 1 evade, and survives with one hull. In the return fire Howl gets two hits into my agility 0 Han. Game over.
I still couldn’t pull it off as he did a good job of meticulously focusing down my ships one at a time, and putting himself in a position to almost always have 1-2 shots on Han. Getting that kill on Howl would have been nice, gut it still would have been an uphill battle from there. Just couldn’t pull this one out.
For those who don’t know, Doug is retired from competitive X-wing (but obviously still gets the itch to play). Even though it was a bummer to come so close and not take it all, it was a ton of fun and an honor to play against Doug, and watch him work his magic with the Tie swarm. For me though, even making the top 4 at a 29 player tournament felt like quite the accomplishment. I really feel like my effort and determination paid off. It gives credence to the idea hard work (and a little luck) really can yield results!
Everyone I played against was really great and really embodied the spirit of “Fly Casual”. Apologies for any butchering of details, name spelling, etc. Huge thanks to everyone that came out, and to everyone I played against for being great competitors and for flying casual!
TL DR: Went 4-1 in Swiss with Fat Han and Stress Bot. Made cut and lost in the final to Doug Kinney’s wave 1 tie swarm.
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