*a few of the photos below were taken from The Dragon Guelph’s Twitter page @
I’ll preface this report by saying that I’m a total newbie at competitive X-Wing. My fiancée and I picked up 2 core sets, the Millennium Falcon and the Slave 1 in mid-2015. We played a few rounds, then moved on to other things. As a total Star Wars geek, I had quietly picked up some other ships here and there, mainly because they looked cool (Decimator), but for the most part, never had any intention of taking the game off of the kitchen table. Then in early January, my buddy Patrick texts me a photo of an X-Wing collection he’d recently acquired and asked if I wanted to play. Game on.
In Feb 2016, after a month of practice games on hardwood floors and in condo board rooms, I signed up for my first tournament at Hobby Kingdom (R.I.P.) in Burlington, Ontario. Coming from a Magic: The Gathering background, I’ve never had a problem with net-decking. I enjoy playing the game more than building squads and finding hidden synergies between pilot skills and upgrade cards. I brought Paul Heaver’s 2015 World’s list and went 2-3. It was a blast and I went home happy with a 22nd place finish and a C3P0 alternate art card.
A month later, I attended my 2nd tournament at Black Knight Games in Hamilton (home to several skilled players and Docking Bay regulars) with 4 x Syndicate Thugs with Unhinged Astromechs and TLTs. I managed to barely squeeze into the top 8 at a 21 player tournament, beating out the 9th place player by a small difference in Strength of Schedule. Still, I got my range ruler and went home satisfied with the knowledge that I had improved.
NET-DECKING A NEW LIST
This was also around the time wave 8 hit stores and I started hearing murmurs of the 3 x Contracted Scouts list. The Jumpmaster 5000 has been the subject of a lot of hype on the Nova Squadron Radio and Scum and Villainy Podcasts. I’m also a regular Reddit lurker and kept reading about the synergies between the ship’s upgrade slots and the improvements made to ordinance in Wave 8. I decided to do some more digging and found what appeared to be the most efficient 3x Jumpmaster list (AKA Jumpmaster 15k, AKA Triple UBoats, AKA Triple Toilet Seats):
3x (25) Contracted Scout
3x (0) Guidance Chips
3x (1) Deadeye
3x (2) R4 Agromech
3x (2) Extra Munitions
2x (3) Plasma Torpedoes
1x (4) Proton Torpedoes
The above gets you to 100 points. Replacing the Proton with a Plasma Torpedo gets you to 99 if you’d like a bid for initiative. I was mostly PS2 and PS4+ so I went in at 100 on the dot.
Here’s a breakdown of how the combo works in an ideal world:
- Get all your Contracted Scouts into range 2-3 by turn 2 and focus
- Choose your target and expend the Focus instead of a target lock using Deadeye
- Trigger R4 Agromech to get a Target Lock, which you can expend during this attack (if you need to, sometimes with Guidance Chips you won’t)
- Use Guidance Chips to modify a blank/focus result into a hit
- Extra Munitions means you can repeat the above 1 more time
- Turrets and a good dial help mop up remaining enemy ships.
Based on the math I’ve read, you have a 74% chance of getting 4 hits and a 95% chance of getting at least 3 hits. I liked those odds in the face of low AGI ships like the Y-Wing, Decimator, and Ghost. Higher AGI ships are still left at the mercy of fickle green dice. I was convinced enough to pick up 3 Jumpmasters, a Punisher (for the 3rd extra munitions I needed), and a sweet new set of maneuver dial upgrades.
March 26, 2016, The Dragon, Guelph, Ontario. The turnout was good for Easter weekend at 32 players. I recognized a few familiar faces from the previous 2 tournaments I’d attended and got a chance to meet some of the locals. So far, the X-Wing crowd was 3 for 3 on being kind, friendly and welcoming. My apologies for the rough lists, I did not take notes and the results have not been uploaded onto List Juggler.
ROUND 1 – Brendon (edited for list)
4-LOM+Juke+ Zuckuss+Title+Tractor Beam+Cloaking Device+Stygium Particle Accelerator
Syndicate Thug +Twin Laser Turret+Unhinged Astromech+Hull Upgrade
Contracted Scout+R5-P8+Anti-Pursuit Lasers+Feedback Array+Intelligence Agent.
Glad to see more Wave 8 running around. Brendon’s 4LOM build was beefy and had cloaking device for added survivability. His Jumpmaster was built for bumping and blocking. I was able to keep my scouts in a tight formation while Brendon split up his Scout form his Y-Wing and 4LOM. Unfortunately, the scout he split off was quickly overwhelmed by torpedoes which left me 3 more or less full health scouts to deal with 4LOM and the Y. at AGI 1, the Y-Wing was quickly removed by a torpedo and turret shots and 4LOM fell not long after.
100-0 win, 1-0
ROUND 2 – I’m sorry I can’t recall this gentleman’s name and the list is kind of hazy too
Dash + Title + Kyle + HLC + VI
2x Green Squad A-Wing + Crackshot + Autothrusters + Predator + Title + Chardaan Refit
I knew that the damage output of the A-Wings were relatively low, even with crack shot and predator. At range 2 they’re throwing 2 dice on my 27 health and at range 1 they risk my 3 dice primary attack. With this in mind, I concentrated on Dash and managed to take him out in 2 turns of fire. The first A-wing fell to 2 more Torpedoes while the last A-Wing managed to roll solid green dice for a few more turns before turrets got the best of him.
100-17 win, 2-0
ROUND 3 – Chris
Torkil Mux + Twin Laser Turret + Bossk
Spice Runner + Twin Laser Turret + Tactician
Dengar + Adaptability + K4 Security Droid + Unhinged Astromech + Punishing One
Chris had Top 4’ed the Black Knight Games Store Champs I attended the previous weekend with the same list, though I did not get a chance to play him. I immediately painted a big red target on the Spice Runner with tactician since my list was so action dependent. Once I took out the Spice Runner, my focus shifted to Torkil as the ability was very relevant with his PS3 and TLT. Focusing on the HWKs gave Dengar time to kill a Scout and a half before succumbing to 1 last torpedo and range 1 turret shots from the 2 remaining scouts. Dengar’s ability was pretty awesome as I believe he managed to attack twice a turn 2 or 3 times this game.
100-51 win, 3-0
ROUND 4 – Colin
Han Solo + Predator + C3PO + Engine Upgrade + Gunner + Title
Poe + VI + R5P9 + Autothrusters
He started his ships together but split off Han to flank the Jumpmasters as Poe turned in to faced them head on. I knew I was playing the game Colin wanted to play but was confident in my ability to take out Poe in 2 rounds of shooting. I also didn’t want to be fighting a regen Poe late game with no torps. In the initial engagement I got a little intimidated when the first plasma torp rolled 4 hits but did a net damage of 1 shield between some solid green dice, autothrusters and the regen from R5-P9. As Han continued to circle around and approach from the rear, I arranged my scouts to try and block Poe. While I did not succeed in the block, I did manage to surround Poe with 3 scouts at range 1. Poe valiantly shrugged off the first scout, but unluckily rolled blanks vs the second, who had rolled a natural 3 primary weapon hits. Boom. From there I was left with 5 torpedos vs Han’s AGI 1.
100-34 win, 4-0
ROUND 5 – Ian
I believe his list was as per below but I don’t recall 100%:
Contracted Scout + Chips + Deadeye+ R4 + EM + Plasma + Zuckuss
Contracted Scout + Chips + Deadeye+ R4 + EM + Plasma
Contracted Scout + Chips + Deadeye+ R4 + EM + Plasma
As the two Triple Jumpmaster players at the tournament, we’d chatted throughout the day and also ended up playing beside each other for a couple of games. I had planned to just joust him head-on and let the dice decide the winner but Ian strategically placed a rock right in between where he set up and where I would have set up, forcing me to have to come in from the side instead. Some bad judgment of distance had me end one of my scouts on a debris field and miss out on a torpedo in the first round of fire. After taking the full brunt of Ian’s shooting, that same scout landed on a rock the following turn and deservedly went boom. This left me in a terrible 3-on-2 situation. Ian flew his scouts masterfully, keeping out of arc to deny me torpedo shots and slooping around to get his own. I managed to kill 2 of his scouts before he wiped me off the table. A good learning experience on my end: be a little more careful on rock placement and don’t force formation flying when an obstacle may clip one of my large-base ships.
67-100 loss, 4-1
At the end of Swiss I was 2nd overall and was giddy as a school girl that I’d made my first top 4 cut!
SEMI-FINALS – Alan
Howlrunner + Crack Shot
Black Squadron Pilot + Crack Shot
Black Squadron Pilot + Crack Shot
Black Squadron Pilot + Crack Shot
Darth Vader + Veteran Instincts + Engine Upgrade + TIE/x1 + Advanced Targeting Computer
I remembered Alan as the winner of the first Store Championship I attended at Hobby Kingdom and had heard he flew his Ties tightly and with deadly precision. I had been concerned about facing a Crack Shot swarm since they had higher PS, a great dial, could force a lot of bumps and deny me the actions I needed to shoot my torpedoes. My targets were prioritized as Howlrunner first to deny rerolls, then Vader to deny crits / damage output, then Black Squadrons, assuming he’d used up his Crack Shots in the first round of shooting. Instead of my usual 2 in front, 1 in behind formation, I point all 3 Scouts at his swarm and waited for them to come within ordinance range. The 3 AGI Ties were very difficult to shoot down with a single torpedo but I did manage to drop Howlrunner in the first round of shooting as well as damage 2 black squadron pilots. Vader kept tokening up so I switched my attention to the black Squadron Ties hoping to do some damage while I positioned for a bump on Vader. I eventually managed to get that key bump and shot Vader down with concentrated fire. The turrets took care of the remaining 2 Black Squadron Pilots.
100-33 Win, 5-1
FINALS – Kyle
Rear Admiral Chiraneau + Veteran Instincts + Darth Vader
Captain Oicunn + Predator + Gunner
Kyle was playing Tony Brijeski’s double-store-champ-winning-dual-Decimator list. He’d gone 5-1 and defeated Ian’s Triple Scout list in the semi’s so I knew it was going to be an up-hill battle. Mathematically I should have the edge as long as I got to use most of my torpedos and stayed out of range 1. As I watched my lead scout lose 4 shields and 2 hull, followed by a crit from Vader Crew, I realized that setting up directly across from 2 Decimators may not have been the brightest idea. Luckily a key critical hit result yielded a blinded pilot on Chirneau which took him out of the fight for a turn, giving me enough time to melt him with torpedos. Then it was 1 and a half Scouts vs Oicunn. 4 dice across 2 bodies at AGI 2, proved better than 3 dice at AGI 0 and after another key crit (Weapons Failure) and losing a 2nd scout, I managed to gun him down.
100-66 Win, 6-1
The Jumpmasters are the tools I’ve been looking for to fit my play-style. Beefy, maneuverable and throw a ton of dice. There was not a single time in the tournament where I wished my ships could do something they weren’t designed to do. The next step is to try out a few more variations of the list, including the “Bumpmaster” version which has one scout loaded with Intimidation, Intelligence Agent and Ant-Pursuit Lasers. It’ll be hard giving up the third set of torpedoes but I’m certain people will soon learn how best to combat the list and I’ll need to both fly and block better.
I am not naive enough to attribute this win purely to my abilities as an X-Wing pilot, I know I still have lots to learn. The win mostly came from a solid list I stole off the internet, several hours of practicing flying large ships in formation the night before, some hot dice and a lot of luck. Either way, I’ve got a Regional Bye in hand, a plaque for the display case and some fond memories of the day. Special thanks Sandy and Will at the Dragon for putting on a great Store Championship and to my buddy Patrick (who also had his best finish yet at 6th place) for the ride and for waiting 2 extra hours for me to finish up my top 4 matches. I owe you dinner.