With the new X-Wing The Force Awakens starter set sitting in my gaming-shelf, I decided to try out some of my new toys.
I made the following Rebels X-Wing list and took it for a game at the club. This is clearly not a tournament list or anything of this sort. The idea here was to fill the list with as many of the new Episode VII Rebels toys from the starter as possible.
Here is my 100 points X-Wing Episode VII Rebels test list:
- Poe Dameron (T-70 X-Wing) with R5-P9 and Adrenaline Rush (35 pts)
- Tycho Celchu (A-Wing) with A-Wing Test Pilot, Chardaan Refit, Push the Limit and Wired (28 pts)
- Rookie Pilot (X-Wing) with BB-8 and Flechette Torpedos (25 pts)
- Bandit Squadron Pilot (Z-95 Headhunter) without upgrades (12 pts)
I played against an Imperial squadron of elite pilots in nimble, arc-dodging ships, including Echo (TIE-Phantom) and Carnor Jax (TIE-Interceptor).
This three-part series will detail my thoughts on
- Poe Dameron and the T-70 X-Wing
- Tycho Celchu with Wired
- The Rookie Pilot with BB-8
Poe Dameron and the new T-70 X-Wing
The Logic behind this Build
Poe Dameron presented a bit of a conflict for me.
One one hand, I wanted to test/get the most out of his pilot ability. An obvious, often recommended synergy is his ability with R5-P9, who allows Poe Dameron to use his “saved” focus token to regain shield at the end of each turn.
One the other hand, I also wanted to try the new Tallan Roll of the T-70 X-Wing, a red maneuver that prevents the focus action (and doesn’t sit well with abilities like Push the Limit). I opted for Adrenaline Rush to have it both ways in one turn.
My Thoughts after Playing
Tallan Roll: The Tallan Roll is by far my favourite novelty of the T-70 X-Wing. It allowed Poe Dameron to keep slippery Imperials like Echo in his sights, allowed him to dodge Carnor Jax and his deadly short-range fire and kept my opponent on edge.
Part of the maneuvers appeal may be its novelty, which may wear off as people get used to it, start predicting it, but so far I am loving it.
Doing the Tallan Roll just once with an Adrenaline Rush was definitely not enough and I played the maneuver a few more times, stress or no stress, for good results.
R5-P9: I was less impressed with R5-P9, despite the obvious synergies. I believe I only used the droid to repair a shield once in the game.
Partly, this was due to the repeated Tallan Rolls, which denied Poe Dameron a focus token in the first place, which in turn was possibly a result of flying against a squadron of nimble arc-dodgers.
I can see how Poe Dameron‘s pilot ability and R5-P9 could work a lot better, especially against less agile ships, especially those with a turret.
It just has not worked for me like this in practice.
The T-70 X-Wing, Poe Dameron in particular, represent a bit of a conundrum:
- Should I equip Poe Dameron for resilience, using focus, in ability and a suitable astromech to keep him healthy?
- Or should I play him for maneuverability, getting the most out of Tallan Rolls and boost actions to dance around asteroids or enemy ships?
Flying an X-Wing like a far more nimbler ship is certainly fun, and the pay-off for a well-placed maneuver with an X-Wing is nothing to sneeze at, even if Poe Dameron may not by the wisest T-70 X-Wing pilot to choose for this approach.
The former, more tanky approach might prove to be the more reliable one, especially if ships like the VT-49 Decimator or YT-2400 are on the table.
It is a tricky choice, but arguably also a sign of excellent game-design behind this ship.