Thursday, November 5, 2015

X-Wing: Two Poe lists at the finals

This is what PS10's O-face looks like.

The finals of the X-Wing World Championship was just played and both lists had Poe Dameron.  Even though both players brought Poe to the party, they did so following different strategies. Let's examine them a little more closely shall we?

Nathan's Poe
Poe Dameron — T-70 X-Wing 31
Veteran Instincts 1
R5-P9 3
Autothrusters 2
Ship Total: 37

Paul's Poe
Poe Dameron — T-70 X-Wing 31
Veteran Instincts 1
R2-D2 4
Autothrusters 2
Ship Total: 38

Both of these ship and pilot configurations run similar qualities:  Shield regen and PS10.  The Autothrusters basically speak for itself as its pretty much a staple buy on any ship with a built-in Boost action.  What really sticks out here is the PS10 on Poe.  A lot of people have been running around with Imperial Aces these days and Soontir, Vader, Carnor and Whisper are pretty much commonplace.  You don't tend to see as many Rebel aces, but when you do, they're normally hanging around PS9 as well because Han, VI Dash or PTL/VI Jake do not typically take these specific pilot skill configurations and thus, are less commonplace in the meta.  That pretty much narrows it down to the Imps having the bulk of the aces in the meta and PS10 is there to make them sweat.

Let's see what PS10 does vs. the most common PS9 aces in the meta:
  • Shooting at Whisper first is brutal because she'll be stuck without Advanced Cloaking Device triggering.  The Phantom is already a pretty squishy ship, and with 2 evade dice to throw, things get really hairy if something outpaces you out of stealth.
  • Shooting at Vader means that his squishier ship will have to spend Focus to deny damage, and thus hitting his damage potential even further.  The TIE/x1 is a ship that really sacrifices damage for durability and vice versa.
  • Poe Dameron doesn't care about Carnor Jax's ability and being PS10 means that he's shooting a much softer platform than Fel.
  • Fel is arguably the bulkiest of the bunch with a solid balance of both maneuverability, durability and offense.  However, he's still in an Interceptor and every action counts.  Denying Fel a Focus or Evade token because Poe rolls well before him means he's under greater threat from the rest of the list.
The other thing about both versions of Poe is that they both regen shields.  R2D2 does it on a green and R5-P9 does it after spending a focus.  Personally, I like the surety that R2D2 provides.  Sure, the green is a bit limiting, but at least you can still regen if you bump or get denied.

When you examine the rest of Paul Heaver's list, namely the stressbot/hog/panic Y-Wing, it seems like a list that's really strong against the Imperial Aces list, while still being to hold its own vs. other lists in the meta.  Seriously though, if there's a single ship out there that poses a threat to Imp aces more than anything in the game, it has to be the stresswing.

Gold Squadron Pilot — Y-Wing 18
Twin Laser Turret 6
R3-A2 2
BTL-A4 Y-Wing 0
Ship Total: 26
Like I said many, many times.  A stressed Interceptor is as good as dead.  This little ship right here is probably the best buy you can have for 26 points IMO.  If you drop this down to a 25 point Ion Cannon, it can offer greater amounts of control but less damage output overall.  I can't tell you how much fear this ship strikes in elite imperial lists.  Combine this little guy and a PS10 Poe and you will be a good place to fight against the meta.

Congrats again to both players for making it this far!

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