Part 1 about preparation and list building can be found here.
The Regional I attended was held at Wyvern’s Keep in Delft, which is the newest game store in the The Hague/Rotterdam area. It was the first time I went to a tournament there. It was the first Regional announced, but I expected it to be the smallest since it is a smaller, less known store. As a matter of fact, with 40 players in attendance, it was larger than the tournaments in Utrecht and The Hague held on the previous weekends. Five players came over from Germany.
Full results can be found on List Juggler.
In round 1, I faced Erik playing a four-ship version of Palp Aces. It’s what I call the 2.0 version of Sozin’s Imperial A-holes, with the Inquisitor instead of Carnor Jax. It is a very versatile list. The Inquisitor is excellent, I think at 31 points better than a 32-point Soontir Fel (shields, green 1 turn, target lock, and does not care about range). Wampa, enabled by Palpatine to get a crit on each attack, threatens high-agility low-hull aces, while Omega Leader at 26 points fills a spot where the Empire previously didn’t have a good choice.
I decided to go for the Inquisitor. I managed to block Omega Leader a couple of times early in the game, denying him his target lock. Unfortunately I found it extremely difficult to land damage on the Inquisitor. Even when my dice weren’t cold (1 hit on four attack dice happened more than once, or rolling black+crit with the Autoblaster Turret), Evade/Focus/Autothrusters/Palpatine made it very tough. Only thanks to Chewie could I land one damage on a couple of turns and barely kill the Inquisitor before both Ghost and Falcon went down.
Against Sebastian, one of the German players, which allowed me to practice my mother tongue. We had met last year at the Leiden Regional, and I keep in touch with the German community via their forum, Mos Eisley Raumhafen. Sebastian flew Triple Imperial Aces (Soontir/Vader/Inquisitor). It is a list that can potentially do more damage than the more common two-ace Palpatine lists, but also lacks Palpatine’s protection. He had to fly very carefully, getting only a few shots early on, while it was much easier for me to get damage through. Vader went down first (no Autothrusters), and with one minute to spare, we started the last round with a healthy Soontir and Chewbacca, and an almost-dead Inquisitor and Ghost, which put me ahead point-wise. Soontir then killed the Ghost, but Chewbacca took out the Inquisitor, giving me the win in what would be the tightest game of the day.
Against Andre, who I believe is a relatively new player. He flew a refreshingly unconventional Corran/Jake/Y-Wing (with Ion Cannon Turret!) list that had taken down my buddy Paul’s Dash/Ghost list in round 1. He poured 10 damage into the Ghost in the first round of shooting, but I then managed to block Corran twice, taking him out. Jake (without Autothrusters) followed not long after. My almost-dead Ghost chased his Y-Wing, and of course I lost the Ghost to rolling a crit when flying across a debris field on the turn Chewie took out the Y-Wing. Still, another win that put me at 2-1.
Round four saw me paired against local X-Wing celebrity Vincent, who had taken 2nd place at the The Hague Regional a week before. He had taken an intentional draw against Erik in round three. Both would end Swiss at 16 tournament points, but Vincent just missed the cut due to lower MoV (and not accepting an ID offer in round five, which would have put him at 17 points), while Erik got in. I faced Palp Shuttle/Soontir/Inquisitor. Since the Shuttle was closest, I decided to go after it (even though I know one shouldn’t), hoping to get it off the board quickly and denying Vincent the use of Palpatine.
He of course tried to get away with the Shuttle, letting Soontir and the Inquisitor focus on the Ghost. In the turn that I had both in range 1, the Ghost ate a five-hit Proton Rocket and got a Blinded Pilot crit, which meant that I couldn’t attack with the Autoblaster Turret. The Ghost was gone soon after. With Palpatine’s help, the shuttle was slow to die, and he blocked Chewbacca with it on the turn I could have taken it out. I only got half points for the Shuttle, since I was once again unable to push damage through.
Another Palp Aces list! Mankit with Shuttle/Inquisitor/Whisper. I decided to ignore the Shuttle. We both rolled poorly in the beginning (four dice resulting in one hit with both the Ghost and Whisper), and then I once again couldn’t push the damage through. I tried to switch targets to the Shuttle, which didn’t help either. I think I did one damage to each of the three ships before Ghost and Falcon went down in a 0-100 game.
My extremely poor MoV put me at the bottom of the 2-3 players, which meant that I finished 32nd out of 40 players. Triple Jumpmasters won the tournament.
I was astonished at how impossible it seemed to damage enemy ships supported by Palpatine, even with three attacks. I think I should have blocked more – I didn’t, since I considered both ships firing onto the same target more important than blocking, but I may have been wrong here. Both Soontir and the Inquisitor thrive on action economy, and taking that away by blocking them hurts them. During the day I was glad I didn’t face a triple Jumpmaster list, but now I wish I had – both for practice, and since it might have been a better match-up, too.
Beyond that, I liked the list. Ghost/Hera/FCS is a great combination, and I twice surprised opponents when K-turning while stressed. Having the whole dial available at all times is great, but it sucks to get one of the “Action:” crits when loaded up with stress, as happened to me several times. I only used Han two or three times, these two points (and the crew slot) could be used otherwise. The YT-1300 has a great dial, too. Having two ships with such dials made maneuvering really simple, and I was barely tired by the end of the day.
I think a stronger control element is required to deal with Palp Aces. I could exchange Han Solo for Tactician, which would make both range 1 and range 2 (in arc) from the Ghost an unpleasant place for Aces. But I’m also considering pairing the Ghost with a TLT/Tactician Sabine and a Stresshog. The basic version (Ghost as above without Han) comes in at 95 points, leaving room for upgrades such as going to Chopper, a Grey Squadron Y-Wing (for firing before Jumpmasters), or an elite pilot talent on Sabine.