Monday, 25 April 2016

Red XIII's X-Wing Maneuver Guide Part 1

Picture the scene: you've barrel rolled and boosted Jake Farrell into a perfect range 1 Procket shot on that pesky shuttle (bye, bye Palp!) Fantastic! You win! Although... wait... through all that excitement you failed to notice the presence of a rather large rock that is now a bit too close for comfort and with Soontir looming into view you need all the actions (and remaining hull) possible to make your escape!
You could do a hard one left and most likely stay out of Soontir's arc BUT, will you end up on the rock?
Decisions like this make or break a match of X-Wing and to be able to confidently say "Hard one left! Out of arc!" will more often that not win you that engagement, if not the whole game.

*** Disclaimer ***
I'm pretty sure I can’t be the 1st person to put together something like this. However, I've tried throwing a few search terms into Google and never had much luck so for everyone else in my boat here it is:

Red XIII’s X-Wing Maneuver Guide

A special thanks goes out to Vassal (where I spent ages getting the screenshots). I couldn't have done it without you buddy!


Well, to be fair, if you are here, you probably already know your way around straights but here are a few screen shots anyway.

Small Base Ships

1 straight = 2 base lengths of movement

2 straight = 3 base lengths of movement

Large Base Ships

1 straight = 1.5 base lengths of movement

2 straight = 2 base lengths of movement

Please note, throughout all the large ship diagrams, I have related everything to a large base. Where the movement of a small ship doing a 1 forward would be 2 small base lengths (referred to as 2 base lengths in the pics), a large ship doing a 1 forward would move 1.5 large bases (referred to as 1.5 base lengths in the pics) The reason for this decision was to help with eyeballing moves within the game. If you're moving a large base ship, it makes sense to use that base as a reference point.

Got that? Then let's move onto the more difficult stuff.


Turns are the second easiest maneuver to visualise. All turn maneuvers, regardless on speed, will turn your ship 90 degrees. There are, obviously, some intricacies (it would be a pretty boring game otherwise, eh?) for example, a one hard turn doesn’t move you one base forward and one to the side, we are now getting into the realms of half-base, quarter-base and third-base movement.

All of these go by the formula:
Lateral movement = forward movement
If you go 0.9 base lengths left, you will also go 0.9 base lengths forward. Simple!

One very interesting thing I came across whilst doing this is the one hard turn for large base ships. Everybody says that when you one hard turn with a large ship your base ends up still inside the corner of where it was previously. Have a look at the screen shot that depicts that. Yes, agreed, it does overlap itself BUT not half as much as I had imagined it would.

Previous to doing this post I would never have done a one hard turn when next to an asteroid or other ship but armed with this knowledge, I am much more likely to do something like that.

Small Base Ships

1 turn = 1.2 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

2 turn = 2.1 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

3 turn = 2.8 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

Large Base Ships

1 turn = 0.9 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

2 turn = 1.25 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

3 turn = 1.6 base lengths of lateral and forward movement

And here's all that info in a bite size chart for your convenience!


Potentially obvious, but any bank move, regardless of speed will turn your ship 45 degrees. The difference is how far forward and how far to the side. Honestly, they are a pain to visualise so hopefully this section will help with that. 
Almost all of these go by this formula:
Lateral movement times 2 = forward movement

Almost all of them… the 3 bank on a small ship doesn’t follow this rule. According to my calculations (and you can see them on the pic below) a small ship doing a left 3 bank will go 4.2 base lengths forward and 1.9 base lengths left… my question to you all is this: WHY???

I have been sitting here staring at these screenshots for what feels like hours. I can’t work it out. Am I being blind? The large base 3 bank follows the formula so why doesn’t the small base one? Please somebody put me out of my misery with this and tell me where I’ve gone wrong (or tell me I haven’t gone wrong and this is just a crazy quirk in the maths of the game)

Anyway, here are the pictures.

Small Base Ships

1 bank = 1.2 base lengths of lateral movement and
2.4 base lengths of forward movement

2 bank = 1.6 base lengths of lateral movement and
3.2 base lengths of forward movement

3 bank = 1.9 base lengths of lateral movement and
4.2 base lengths of forward movement

Large Base Ships

1 bank = 0.9 base lengths of lateral movement and
1.8 base lengths of forward movement

2 bank = 1.1 base lengths of lateral movement and
2.2 base lengths of forward movement

3 bank = 1.3 base lengths of lateral movement and
2.6 base lengths of forward movement

 And another table!

I've been asking myself this question: Is the knowledge we are gaining from this experiment/article/blog post worth it? How am I going to use it to "fly better"?
The answer to the first question is (for me) yes, it's definitely worth it. During the time I've been working on this stuff (a few weeks maybe) I have noticed a difference in my flying, I know where a 5K is going to get me and I will do it in the full knowledge that I'm not going off the table. Asteroids and debris have been much less of a worry for me now I can make and educated guess where a 3 bank will put me. As for how to use this info, I think there are 2 schools of thought, either, approximate the whole shebang (i.e. round up the numbers and remember the formulas - lots of "just over a base length" or "just under a base length") OR print out little tables like the ones above and use those for reference. I usually fly all small ships or two big ships so you would only need one set of tables if you are doing the same... 

Anyway, I'm going to leave it there for the time being, my brain if fried and if you've managed to take all that in then I'm sure your's is too. I will write up part 2 in the very near future which will deal with range and using our knowledge of movement and range to get out of some sticky situations!

Until then; Red XIII signing off!

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Battle report - Marquee Models - Harlow - 24-04-16

Marquee Models in Harlow! The good thing about going to tournaments is that you get to scope out lots of different shops and venues. The big bonus of today was that I’ve actually discovered my most local FLGS. At a paltry 20 minute drive away, it’s closer than all the other shops I’ve been visiting, plus the stock of X-Wing products was great. Thoroughly recommended!

So anyway, this was another trip for me and my best mate and wingman, Joel (who’s blog you can find here)  I was running Chewie with a Lothal Rebel and Joel was running DenBot (Dengar and IGB)

My list:
Chewie – Lone Wolf / C3PO / Gunner / title
Lothal Rebel – FCS / TLT / Hera / Ezra

Chewie is fairly self explanatory, I have been running him with predator for a while but due to points being at a premium, I’ve had to relegate that down to Lone Wolf… which I actually love! Lone wolf does require you have to give a bit more thought to deployment, however it also makes Chewie a great endgame ship for a few reasons.
1)   it’s obviously a reroll on offence, so long as you get a blank (and let’s be honest, with 3 dice, you almost always get at least one blank!)
2)   there is some great synergy with 3PO. When you roll a single die, you call 0 for 3PO, if you get an evade on the dice, you have your evade, well done! However, if you get a blank, you get your evade from 3PO, THEN you can lone wolf reroll potentially getting another evade! That’s 2 evades from one dice, an impossibility made possible!

The Lothal Rebel, otherwise known as the stress-boat. Get yourself stressed and you can turn an eye to a crit with Ezra AND you can still have access to your entire dial due to Hera! Fantastic! An odd side effect of this is that I have actually had to AVOID green moves once or twice because I only have one stress token and doing the green move would bump me and clear my stress resulting in one less modified eyeball. TLT and FCS are obvious inclusions really.

So, onto the matchups…

Match 1 aka Lucky Crits!

Kyle – Rec Spec / TLT
Miranda – TLT
Poe – R2D2 / Integrated Astromech

I had a fair amount of trouble at the start with ranges and arcs etc. and the Ghost took a bit of a battering. I managed to get Kyle off the board after a few rounds of shooting. Kyle’s inclusion in this squad allows Poe to do red manoeuvres or take Target Locks and still be assigned his customary focus… pretty cool! Fast forward a few rounds and Poe is in pretty good shape; 1 shield left. He takes a face full of red from the Chewie (the Ghost is well gone by now!) and suffers a hit and crit. The hit kills the shield and then the crit comes up as major explosion, the red from major explosion comes up as a hit and the crit taken from that? You guessed it, Direct Hit! Dead Poe! I couldn’t believe my luck! (We later realised that Poe had Integrated Astromech so could have saved himself but as we were both so into the engagement, we had both forgotten!) Miranda vs. Chewie. Could be anyone’s game. In the end I snatched it… just! (With another lucky Direct Hit!)

Paul probably flew better than me in this match but because this is (partially) a game of luck I got the win in the end!

Win 100 – 47

Match 2 aka Triple Jumpmasters L

3 x Contracted Scout – Deadeye / R4 Agromech / Plasma Torps / Extra Muns / Guidance Chips

The most dreaded list in X-Wing currently! Half the reason I took the Ghost and Chewie was the fact that 29HP is enough to eat a fair few torps.
I actually think, flying wise, this was my best game of the day. I couldn’t pull off the victory though. There’s just too much damage output for a player of my calibre to weather.

Probably the most interesting moment in the match came about the quarters of the way through the match. I had taken out a Jumpmaster and my Ghost had bitten the dust. I was faced with the decision of rolling to destroy the second Jumpmaster OR rolling to cause one damage against the third Jumpmaster, giving me half points on it. I went for the kill shot, destroyed the second Jumpmaster and promptly got blown to smithereens the next turn.

Still a very fun match and I’m happy with that result, as I’ve never faced the triple Jumpmasters before.

Also, question: how good are these tokens?

Answer: freaking awesome!

Loss – 66 – 100

Match 3 aka "Oh yea! I’ve got gunner!"

Soontir – Autothrusters / Stealth Device / Royal Guard / PTL
Carnor - Autothrusters / Stealth Device / Royal Guard / PTL
Omicron – Palp / FCS

Now, if I’m right, this is supposed to be a bad matchup for my list. Imperial Aces with Autothrusters should destroy me, right?

Well, I must have got lucky! The first part of the match was me dealing with the shuttle. By the time that had been destroyed the Ghost was on one hull… then it died (I’m beginning to see a pattern here!) So, full health Chewie vs. full health Soontir and Carnor.

I got a lucky crit on Carnor. Major explosion again! Then a hit again! Console fire… it’s not a direct hit but it’s good enough! Next turn, console fire procs a hit and Carnor goes down in flames. Then it was Chewie vs. Soontir and we went round and round and round 3PO-ing, Lone Wolfing, Stealth Device-ing and Autothrusting basically resulting in no damage whatsoever! About 5 minutes before time was called I glanced down at my cards and noticed one that I didn’t recognise… I picked it up and blew a thick layer of dust off it. Underneath, it read G.U.N.N.E.R… OH FOR F&*K SAKE! Yes, I’d for gotten to use Gunner this entire match, all those times when Soontir’s green dice had whiffed and he’s had to use his stack of tokens to get out of trouble… I could have shot at an untokened Soontir…

We flew on and eventually time was called. A win, but it could have been better if I’d remembered Gunner.
“Joel, have you got a marker?”
“Yea, why?”
“I’m going to write Gunner on my hand!”
So I did.

Win 65 – 47

Match 4 aka The Swarm

5 x Green Squadron Pilot – Adaptability / Crackshot / Autothrusters / refit / title

I’d only ever played against one A-wing swarm before… I’d got royally mullered by it so when I saw this I wasn’t too hopeful really. I messed up the initial engagement and got many crackshot-ed hits landed on my Ghost (good job there was that debris field in the way that allowed me to roll the one green dice that prompted the crackshot spend) So… round about turn 4 or 5, the ghost had died and so had 2 A-wings.
3 A-wings vs. Chewie! It. Was. On.
Actually, it wasn’t really on that much, lots of flying around not much focused fire. I got the odd shield off An A-wing here and there and pretty much deflected everything that was thrown at me. We ended with Chewie on 2 shields and the three 3 A-wings all on 1 shield or less.

Here's a picture of Chewie pulling a wheely! (what is this move called if you don't have wheels?)

Before I wrap up this match, what of my Gunner problem? Yea, still forgot to use it a fair few times. Better than last match though. Also, I’ve realised that writing things on your hands doesn’t work… because, erm, you don’t look at your hands that much… at one point I whiffed a roll and facepalmed myself with my ‘gunner-ed’ hand prompting my opponent (very generously) to say ‘Gunner?’

A modified loss for me (do they exist? Well, a modified win for my opponent, anyway)

40 – 47

So I went 2 – 2 for my troubles and came 6th of 14 players (don’t have to change the name of the blog just yet. lol) and got a lady rebel VI (badass!) and some acrylic ion tokens. Happy with that!

Did I learn anything? Yes, study initial engagements! Also, REMEMBER .TO. USE. GUNNER! I have another tourney in early May at ibuywargames and I think I’m going to keep the same list! Just got to get some more practice in with it beforehand (helllllooooo Vassal)

Ok well, this is Red XIII signing off. (I made myself a callsign, squeee!) Until next time, fly casual!

Friday, 8 April 2016

The Fleet Has Arrived! - Imperial Repaint

Hello everyone,

just a quick one to show off the new fleet!

I can't take any credit for these repaints, my good friend and fellow X-Winger Liam Scully is responsible for these gorgeous creations.

The Royal Guard TIE Interceptor was the inspiration for the colour scheme and so that one didn't need painting but I think it fits in pretty well.

At some point I hope to include a TIE mini swarm, TIE Defender and TIE Bomber in there just to round it off but as they are the ships I fly least, they are bottom of the priority list.

I'm really happy with them What do you guys think?

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Vault 14 – Doncaster – 03-04-16

So, my first post then…
*** Disclaimer ***
I am the epitome of a mid table player! I have only played in 4 tournaments so far, in my first, I placed 7th out of 16. My second; 14th of 18. Third; 17th of 34 and fourth; 9th of 18.
In case you missed that, 75% of the tourney’s I’ve played in, I have ended up directly in the middle of the table. Therefore, I am not professing to be any kind of authority on this game (or very good at it for that matter!) but these posts might be interesting to players in a similar position to myself or people just getting into the game.

So, with that out of the way, on to my list!
VI / Engine / ATC / Title
Omega Leader
Juke / Comm Relay
FCS / Guidance Chips / Extra Munitions / Cluster Missiles / Plasma Torpedoes

Most of that is fairly self-explanatory, Vader to arc dodge at PS11 (it’s worth noting that the list comes in at 99 points so there’s a little initiative bid in the to make sure Vader is moving almost all the time) and Omega Leader to make all my opponents say “Argghhh! I hate Omega Leader!!!”
Where the list is a bit different from the usual Imp lists you see is the inclusion of Redline.
Redline has obviously improved with Guidance Chips, for those that don’t know, the order of hurt goes thus:
1)   Redline acquires a target lock (which, because of his ability means 2 target locks)
2)   Redline shoots ordinance (let’s just say it’s Plasma  Torps) using up one target lock.
3)   Redline modifies his dice with his second target lock
4)   If there are still any dice with useless results, Redline uses Guidance Chips to make one of them a hit!
5)   Redline reacquires his two target locks with FCS
Many pains!

… IF Redline has his target in arc… and that’s the challenge! Many people would say that spending 38 points on a ship with 1 AGI and a mediocre dial which really relies on getting and using target locks is too much! I, however, am sticking with it because, along with the pain it brings, it has 9 hit points and whilst everyone is zerging the Punisher down, it leaves the other two to flank. (that’s the idea, anyway)

OK then, on to the day!

Wake up at 6:30, feel bad.
Leave home at 7, still feel bad.
Arrive in Doncaster at 9.30, feel better.
Realise that the start time was not 10am (as I originally thought) but 11am, feel bad again.

So Vault 14 is a nice place, friendly staff, quite small but (from what I could tell) well laid out with an excellent selection of X-Wing ships. I think the Tantive was the only thing missing from stock! The shop is pretty new as well so hopefully we'll see more good stuff happening here.

*** Round One aka God Damn Gary the TIE ***
Vs. John McGinty
Vader (or cosplay Kylo Ren)
The Inquisitor
3 x Academy TIEs

You know people say “You should never underestimate the lowly TIE fighter.” and you always think, yea yea yea, what can a tiny TIE really do?

I’d like to introduce you to Gary, he’s currently only an academy pilot (although I think he is getting promoted after this match) he’s the TIE fighter on the right in the picture with a number 3. I hate Gary!

After a few combat rounds, Omega Leader is off the board, two TIEs are off the board and I’m thinking, this game seems to be going my way, I’ll take out that last TIE and then move onto the rest…

30 minutes later

It’s carnage! All my ships are bleeding health badly and Gary is still skipping around the board, rolling triple evades and double hits. I guess fair mention should go to Vader and The Inquisitor who also got some hits in but Gary… Gary was man of the match. I hate Gary!

Anyway, I took out his Inquisitor before I lost!

Loss! 53-100

(PS. I heard a rumor that on his way home, Gary flew over a debris field, rolled a crit, got a Major Explosion, rolled a hit then got a Direct Hit… good riddance!)

*** Round two aka The Final Dice Roll ***
Vs. Phil Taylor
Lt. Colzet
Bounty Hunter

This was a nice list, the Bounty Hunter had Kallus (which was used against my Redline and iirc had little or no effect in this game)  and Redline had a mixture of torps and bombs (and let me tell you, Proton Bombs hurt)

I was quite excited to see what someone else would do with Redline (as you don’t see him very often) and there was at least one point where there was an actual ‘Punisher-off’. It was at range one and my Punisher has ordinance covered from 1-3 and Phil’s had accuracy corrector to make his primary attacks hit that bit harder. I THINK my Redline came out on top that time.

Anyway, many pew pews later, time was called. I had Redline still alive, Phil had Colzet still alive. Colzet was worth 24 points against my 38 point Redline. Redline had 4 hull left so I was feeling pretty good, just had to stay out of arc, or at least range one. So after we’d both moved, Redline was in his arc at range 1… not good! To be fair though, he’d have to roll 3 hits, then use his ATC to add a crit and I would have to roll a blank, or an eye… So he proceeded to roll 3 hits, add a crit with ATC and I rolled an eye… bye bye Redline.

This was a great game and although the last result was totally down to dice, Phil flew the rest of the match really well. I can honestly say that was one of my favourite games of X-Wing I’ve ever played!

Loss! 76-100

*** Round three aka Bad Dice ***
Vs. Hayden "MrTape" Watt
The Inquisitor

Great! A Juno list! I’ve wanted to see Juno played by someone else for ages! See, the thing is, I think Juno’s ability is one of the best in the game, I’m just too ham-fisted to be able to leverage it properly.

Unfortunately though, this was not Hayden’s day and I took Juno off the board three turns in so he didn’t get a chance to show me how she worked properly. Aiden’s dice were cold. I flew fairly well but he rolled many triple blanks. This resulted in a 100-0 win to me. I felt slightly bad but I guess that’s the luck of the dice!

Win! 100-0

The results were called and true to form, I came 9th out of 16 (pretty much slap, bang in the middle). The frustrating thing about all these mid table results is that I always seem to just miss out on the next prize tier… oh well, those acrylic ion tokens will be mine one day (when I buy them off eBay in a few months!)

So, off I set on the two and a half hour drive home during which I came up with a fantastic list idea centred around a TIE swarm with Attani Mindlink…
Wow, literally, I’m going to wipe the floor with this list!
Bye bye mid table, hello first place!
I’m finally going get that elusive Store Championship win!
I’m going to beat Paul Heaver with it!
…of course, I latter realised that Attani Mindlink is Scum only. Damn!

Link to Vault 14