14 May 2014

X-Wing ressources

My (mostly RPG) group has always been exclusively GW has far as miniature gaming was concerned. When I reached my saturation threshold with their games, I just stopped playing with toy soldiers for lack of an alternative. Until fairly recently, when one of the movers and shakers of the group got fed with GW games too and started looking into, and promoting, other games.

His first extra-GW affair was Dystopian Wars but for various reasons (business model too similar to GW, unoriginal rules, lack of interest in the steampunk genre, lack of motivation to invest significant money, time and energy in a new range of miniatures and matching terrain, etc.) it remains a fairly confidential activity in the group.

More recently he came up with X-Wing... I was sceptical at first: although you don't need many, the miniatures are expensive. And I was cautious of anything coming from a major manufacturer and enjoying commercial success. Very snobbish of me, I guess: "if most people like it, I'm unlikely to appreciate it!" But he showed me the minis (which are very nice, a serious notch above what I was used to in pre-paint and a level I could live with having all my minis painted at), I read the rule online (I was certainly curious about the movement blind programming scheme, which introduce some fog of war and/or friction, two personal obsessions when it comes to wargaming) and ended up buying a box and playing a couple of games... And then I bought a second box... And two each of everything that's been produced so far! And that's not the best of it... I even got CINCHOME to give it a try! So far she likes it... She's got some days off coming, we'll see if I can hook her up for good!

A couple of ressources I've find interesting and/or useful...

Quick play:
Want to set up set up a quick game? Play a demo game? Just skip the list building already. Glen from Couple vs. Cardboard proposes 28 ready-use lists (both Rebs and Imps) They might not be the bleeding edge of tournament warfare, but they're varied, characterful and should be fun to play in casual games (and I've never been extremely tempted by the list-building side of the force anyway). I entered them in my favourite squadron builder, printed them out in  full view (with all special rules detailed on the print-out) and put them in a binder. 

Pick up game? Sure: pick one list for each side, select the minis and you're on!

Solo Play AI:
An applet proposed on BoarGamesGeek by Ralph Berret (wyzbang) based on tables written by Andrzej Sieradzki (nightbomber). I've downloaded version 1.6.0 and loaded it on the tablet (quick troubleshooting: it wasn't displaying correctly using Chrome but works fine in Firefox) but haven't tried it yet. 

How does it work: you set up a gale (e.g. using the above list), program your ships as per normal but leave the AI ships alone. You start resolving movements in the usual order, each time it's a AI ship's turn to move, you select the correct type of ship in the program, click on a section of the red circle to indicate the relative position of that ship's target (which is one of your ships) and the program generate three manoeuvres. One to apply if the target is closing and in range, one if the target is opening and in range and one if the target is out of range. Apply the manoeuvre, use the guidelines displayed to select an action. And carry on through the piloting skill order, resolving your ships normally and using the AI for the enemy.

So in this exemple, the ship being activated is a TIE Fighter and its target (one of my X-Wing) is righ ahead (I clicked on the upper part of the red circle). If the X-Wing is closing, the Tie will do a Straight 2; if the X-Wing is opening, the Tie with do a Straight 3; and if the X-Wing is out of range the Tie will do a Straight 5. The TIE's action will be selected using the guidelines in the right part of the screen.
Note that their are both a doctrinal and a random factor in the manoeuvres: in the above screenshot situation, the closing manoeuvre could be either a Bank 2 Left (10% probability), a Straight 2 (40%), a Straight 3 (30%), a Koiogran 3 (10%) or a Koiogran 4 (10%). So the manoeuvre should always make some sense (at least as much as what a player could program without knowing its target manoeuvre) but isn't entirely predictable either!

Hit probabilities:
Ever wondered if you'd better shoot the Tie at Range 2 who only needs one more hit to be destroyed but has an evade token or rather the fresh one at Range 1 that you have a target lock on? Wonder no more! Chris K. (chrisdk) posted these on BoardGameGeek. I haven't checked the numbers (nor do I intent to), but it looks legit enough...

Tables under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International CC licence.


  1. I created a checklist of all SW XW items (including spoilers). Check it out on http://www.trovestar.com/sw_xw/index.php. There is also a squadron builder, but it isn't well tested yet.

  2. I notice that the lists for couples vs cardboard is no longer valid (Their website is gone, likely replaced by Facebook which I don't particularly find that useful for storing info...) Did you still have a link or copy of that list. I am just starting out into SW-TMG and would love pre-arranged casual squads.

    1. Wayback Machine?