Unlucky for Some

Harrison is our X Wing X-pert here at Chaos Cards. When he’s not writing up articles for us lot at CCHQ he’s at our tabletop gaming centre running our tournaments. We’ve told him to go home and get a life that isn’t based around tiny plastic spaceships, but he just doesn’t listen.

Welcome back, fellow pilots! Today we’re going to get into the latest wave for X Wing, wave 13! I’ve got to admit I’m a little late to the party on this one. Real life has gotten in the way with starting a new job and the holiday season getting into full swing; but I’m back in the cockpit and once again reporting for duty. Wave 13 has given us 2 new ships for the newest kids on the block, the Resistance and the First Order. Let’s start with the new resistance B/SF-17 Bomber.

Just like the Ghost, this large based ship has no pilots with an EPT. I must admit that this comes as a bit of a shock to me, as the B/SF only has 4 upgrade slots, unlike every other ship in the game that doesn’t have an EPT. This is definitely more of a design choice than what looked like just flat out running out of space on the upgrade bar like previously! But there is a definite feeling of quality over quantity on this upgrade bar, with the coveted System upgrade slot, as well as a Tech and two Bomb upgrades. This thing is definitely going to be able to throw bombs down range in a lot of interesting ways. If you want a cheap, large based turret, then this thing fills out that niche in the rebel faction in ways that the Outer Rim Smuggler never did. It’s 2 points cheaper for the same Pilot Skill, has the same action bar and 2 extra upgrade slots. Yet so far from what we’ve heard, it still isn’t going to be overly shaping the meta. If that’s not a clear display of power creep, I don’t know what is!

From what I can see, this ship is going to fill the niche of heavy duty bomber very well. For the low cost of 33 points, you can stack 4 Proton Bombs onto the PS1 bomber and have it hurl them down range with some of the new upgrades in this pack.

I can see this pack really starting to shine with our old friend, Rebel Captain Nym. With the plethora of horrible bombs that you can put onto this ship which are then thrown into the middle of the playing field, it makes sense to run Captain Nym with his pilot ability to stop 1 friendly bomb per turn exploding. On turn 2 you can have a proton bomb covering a key area of the board, leaving Nym to reposition wherever he needs to.

Because of the lack on an EPT, I can see why FFG didn’t bother with another generic pilot and instead opted for 3 named pilots. Crimson Specialist follows in the tradition of a dedicated bomber with an interesting way to drop bombs. I think that the ability to drop your on reveal bombs touching anywhere on your ship is an interesting gimmick, but I’m dubious to see if there will be much play for this guy; judging by how much of Sol Sixxa, Eamon Azzameen and Deathrain we see on the table! Cobalt Leader has a Wedge like ability when an enemy ship is at range 1 of a bomb token, but when the weapon being used is a 2 dice turret, it’s not overwhelming. I can see an edge case for an accuracy corrector Cobalt Leader with Ordinance Silos and Cluster Mines, to free up your action to drop bombs and still deal a reasonable amount of damage; but without an ability to get bombs ahead of you, you’re going to be relying on your opponent chasing you and being good enough to stay at range 1 of your dropped bombs.

Finally we have Crimson Leader, who can assign the Rattled Condition in exchange for spending a hit or crit result on his attack. I think that this is probably the strongest of the 3 abilities, but reduces Crimson Leader to a pure bombing role, as he will then never deal any damage with his primary weapon turret. That being said, the condition is nasty enough that it’s worth trying to remove, especially with a 5 in 8 chance of succeeding on the roll. What this ability brings to the table isn’t so much of a damage buff, but a reduction in action economy, but once again it’s up to your opponent which one of these you will get. If you can find a way to make both an unpleasant prospect, then you will be on to a winner with Crimson Leader.

Before we move on, I’m going to give a quick mention to the other 2 B/SF only upgrades in the pack, Deflective Plating and the title, Crossfire Formation. For a point and your Modification slot, you can’t get much better than the deflective plating, as this ship is going to be running into its own bombs with the Trajectory Simulator. I think if you’re running one, then you really should be running the other. As for the title, I really think this is one that you can leave in the folder. This title only works for friendly resistance ships, and really is only going to be useful at most once per turn. For 2 points you can instead grab Ordinance Silos, or the trajectory Simulator and Deflective Plating and you would get much more use out of them than this title.

Next up we have the ship that’s gotten everyone excited (OK, not everyone, but you get the idea), the TIE Silencer. This ship doesn’t hang about; with their pilots starting at PS 4 and working their way up to 9. The Systems and Tech upgrades are once again shown on the upgrade bar of this ship, but with a completely different role in your squad you will definitely be able to make the most of this interesting combo; especially with some of the new tech upgrades on offer in this pack! Advanced Optics is a great way of going into that initial engagement tokened up, while Threat Tracer is going to be great on a high Pilot Skill ship that has access to Fire Control System.

As for the pilots, I really think that you’re going to see a definite “9 or nothing” mentality for running this ship. Kylo Ren and Test Pilot “Blackout” will be seen, if not for their pilot ability, which I feel is middling at best, but more for the higher Pilot Skill these pilots have to offer over the generics. As for loadouts, I can see people gravitate towards Veteran Instincts and Push the Limit as an EPT and then either Fire Control System or Advanced Sensors for the Systems slot. The key to this ship working is beefing up the action economy, so I can also see people running the Threat Tracer if they’ve gone for VI and FCS, or maybe Advanced Optics to keep that Focus Token when it hasn’t been spent.

Last on the list is the title card. For 2 points it gives you 2 abilities and, while both are either situational or a one shot, the ability to modify defence dice is so strong that I think this will be an auto-include. On a ship that costs 40+ points, you really don’t want to skimp out on anything that can offer additional defence. Finally there’s the modification slot to look at… Autothrusters.

And that covers all of the Wave 13 ships and new upgrades. I’m really looking forward to getting the Silencer on the table, but I’m going to have to wait until after Christmas to get my hands on them! Until then I’m just going to have to content myself with the awesome things you get from wave 12! This is your friendly local Recon Specialist, signing off.

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