Tag Archives: X-Wing

X-Wing Second Edition: First thoughts

Fantasy Flight games have announced X-Wing Second Edition. It surprised me a bit but I am quite optimistic. As a somewhat serious casual player I think the game was in need of an overhaul. I see a number of areas of possible improvement. I mostly fly rebels/resistance.

X-wing is unfortunately not so little like Rock-papers-scissors. Often when you reveal squads it is obvious right from the beginning who has the upper hand. Not because one squad is better but because of the fit.

Pilot Skills
If you field 3 ships with PS8 against 3 ships with PS9 you know you have a massive uphill battle to fight. Your PS8 could as well have been PS2 and it would have made no difference (except your squad would have been much cheaper). There are a few mechanism that make it convenient to have the same PS on all your ships. If both players reason like this it is very likely someone will get a PS advantage before the game even starts.

I hope 2nd Edition will be more interesting and balanced for all combinations of PS.

Turrets beat Arc Dodgers beat Jousters
X-wing was originally about choosing a maneuver template, resolving your move, and the player who outsmarted/outguessed the opponent gets an upper hand. Arc dodgers – hi PS pilots with boost and/or barrel roll turn the maneuver template into an afterthought. In order to beat a high PS arc dodger you need a turret, which reduces the role of maneuvering and flying.

I hope in 2nd Edition both Arc Dodging and Turrets will be less efficient so the game gets back to the maneuver dial.

Rebalanced Maneuver Dials
After years of Waves almost every ship has a superior maneuver dial to the T65 X-wing. It makes no sense.

I hope in 2nd Edition the maneuver dials are balanced.

2 attack dice vs 3 defence dice + evade
Some ships can hardly produce damage to other ships at all. Particularly 2 attack dice is getting hopeless against many squads. A more powerful weapon should not make it easier to hit, it should cause more damage when you hit. For the rebels this hurts the A-wing and the Z95 particularly bad.

I hope in 2nd Edition no ships will be allowed to be practically safe from 2 attack dice.

Torpedoes and Missiles were not good enough when the game came out. Different upgrades have tried to improve the situation so now there are some cases where ordnance can work. Harpoons are effective but there is nothing fun or thematic about them whatsoever (why do they attach if they only remove shields).

I hope in 2nd Edition Torpedoes and Missiles will be more like upgrades that improve an attack or two for for most any ships, rather than very specific strategies. I hope the different Missiles and Torpedoes will be more balanced.

Secondary Weapons
I think the costs for secondary weapons are problematic. For the X-wing, which already has a primary weapon of 3, paying 4 points for a single Torpedo that typically requires target lock often makes little sense. Also, Guidance Chips collides with other modifications.

The B-wing and Y-wing are more suitable for Torpedoes (extra munitions + guidance chips) but they have Cannon and Turret options also.

The B-wing already has 3 attack dice and usually it has other weaknesses that are more important to fix than a slightly better attack. They Y-wing on the other hand really needs a turret. So much so that TLT (or rarely Ion Turret) are almost mandatory and the weaker turrets are rarely used.

The A-wing is fun with a missile but it hardly makes sense instead of Chardaan Refit.

Secondary Weapons are too expensive to add just in case or for the fun of it. In a way I would have preferred them to be a mandatory configuration choice because it would make the game more interesting. As it is now a generic Y-wing is flown with TLT. If all generic Y-wings came both with a turret and two torpedoes of choice flying them would be much more interesting. But today you would never field such a Y-wing because it would die with most secondary weapons never used and points wasted. You only equip ordnance if you are quite sure you can deliver them very early in the game (high PS is a must).

I hope in 2nd edition more secondary weapons are brought into actual play so they create tactical choices in the game, rather than merely being strategic list building choices.

Stress as control
There are a few upgrades and pilots that can deliver stress rather arbitrarily (like Tactician and R3-A2). While a somewhat useful strategy against some opponents I don’t much enjoy this mechanism. I think it makes more sense to deliver stress with weapons like Flechette Cannon/Torpedeos, bombs and criticals.

I hope in 2nd Edition stress delivery will not be a strategy.

Regeneration can make a pilot practically immortal (against some opponents) and/or make the game very long. I think the idea of the game is that ships should get damage and get destroyed, not repair during battle.

I hope in 2nd Edition recovering shields will be a more limited thing.

Actions, multiple actions and free actions
It was cool that Darth Vader could make two actions and Push The Limit was also cool. But when ships start getting free actions (or tokens) it makes the game less interesting. There should be an element of guessing and risk-reward involved with actions. The worst thing is cards like Expertise.

I hope in 2nd Edition the very normal thing will be one maneuver and one action. Multiple actions should not be routine and tokens should not just come for free.

Upgrades, pilots and combos
I understand a game like X-wing is about finding powerful combination of upgrades (like in Magic The Gathering). But that also eliminates balance. Today I tried Rey+Finn+Gunner+Expertise. Finn is kind of useless in most other cases and Gunner is usually overpriced. But the combination with Rey and Expertise is very powerful. Sometimes in X-wing it is like the fundamental principles of the game are overthrown by upgrades and pilot abilities.

I hope in 2nd Edition pilot abilities and upgrades will play a less significant role for the outcome of the game. I hope the list building element is more about taste, style and tactics and less about finding very optimal and efficient combinations (because those few strong combinations of pilots and upgrades will generally rule the game and all else will turn obsolete and uncompetetive).

Cloaking is cool. But the idea of decloaking with a boost or barrel roll is that you didn’t really know where the cloaked ship was. It really makes no sense when a ship (Whister) cloakes and decloakes every round basically breaking all reasonable rules of flying.

I hope in 2nd Edition cloaking gets more balanced.

I think X-wing is (too) much about Aces and often pairs or triples of aces. When it comes to Generics it has often been very monotonous squads (4xY+TLT, BBBBZ).

I hope in 2nd Edition it will make sense to fly a wing leader with a few generics and that all-aces-lists will be less common (or even uncommon).

Early game vs End game
I have often fielded 4-5 generics against 2-3 aces. The game is interesting from the start. Aces can be blocked, fire can be focused on a single ace and so on. If I play well both sides have lost ships and the game is down to 2-3 generics vs a single ace. Usually the Ace wins even if it represents fewer squad points, and often the ace can control the game completely. I understand the opposite is somewhat true for Epic games: with 200-300 points per side the aces are vulnerable and not so significant. This is perhaps realistic if there is such a thing.

I hope in 2nd Edition the game will be more balanced (and interesting) from start to end.

It is easy to get a romantic idea about the original game with just T65 vs Tie. Of course it is more fun now with all the variety of ships, upgrades, pilots and tactics. But there are also severe balancing problems.

  • Many ships are rarely used
  • Even more pilots are never used
  • TLT is enormously dominant as turrent
  • Harpoons are very dominant as ordnance
  • Miranda is overpowered (in a K-wing of all possible ships), but she is necessary to balance out the Arc Dodgers that otherwise just beats most squads
  • Many cards have been nerfed and the original text/rules dont apply anymore
  • Powercreep – more defence dies – more attack dice – more upgrades – better maneuver dials; has turned the game more into a guessing arms race and less into a tactical flight game

A new simplified, unified and balanced edition can probably be much better.

After playing X-wing I have often thought that perhaps it would be funnier to just construct to lists that are supposed to be balanced and thematic against each other. The 2nd Edition seems to have this idea for casual game.

The conversion kits seem great (and reasonably priced). Hopefully in 2nd Edition I don’t want to play XXXX, XXXXZ, BBBBZ, YYYY, AAAAA, AAAAAA or ZZZZZZZZ but rather squads with more variety. In that case a single conversion kit will do quite fine.

Flight-Assist Astromech

Finally, the fix for the X-wing has arrived. I have written before here and here about my thoughts on fixing the X-wing.

The Flight-Assist Astromech costs one point and lets you make a free barrel roll or boost, unless you have a target in sight and range.

I think it is a good and well balanced upgrade, with uses outside the T65 X-wing.

T65 X-wing
I think for low cost generic X-wings (Rookie Pilots at 21p) the Flight-Assist Astromech is the best upgrade (previous options were R2 and Targetting Astromech). Does it also bring the Rookie Pilot back to play? Well, I don’t compete. I think it compensates for the worst weaknesses of the X-wing in a sensible way. In the first round(s) of the game you can boost to keep up speed with T70 or other ships, and you have more options when it comes to arriving at the battle. The first round of fire it is more likely that the T65 is actually in the fight, and not behind or all enemies out of arc. In the battle you have now options to the 4-U-turn and you can re-engage quicker and more effectively.

I tried a list I call Return of the X-wing that you find here.

How about T65 aces (Luke, Wedge, Wes)? Having a high skill means your opponents fly first and you may not be allowed to use Flight-Assist. I can see situations where BB8 (however unique) would be better. No doubt Luke, Wedge and Wes are better Flight-Assist than without. The most obvious situation is a first/second round strike where a boost or barrel roll can make them just reach. I have not tried this yet.

Finally, Flight-Assist seems to be of no significant benefit to Biggs which was important.

T70 X-wing
The T70 already has boost. Targetting Astromech is great with its 3 red maneuvers while Flight-Assist is not. Also, Poe likes R5-P9 and Nien Numb likes R3-A2. I think the T70 still has many options.

Flight-Assist Astromech can specifically not be used with turret weapons. This makes it interesting to combine with BTL-A4 to produce a more dog-fighting capable Y-wing. I think this was a clever Y-wing upgrade!

I think the ARC-170 is perhaps the ship that benefits the most of Fligth-Assist. With a maneuver dial similar to the T65 and no turrets (unlike Y-wing) it can really use boost or barrel roll. But I think (after flying only once) that Flight-Assist works very well with the Auxilliary firing arc. Normally it is quite hard to make good use of the tail gun, but if you can boost or barrel roll to get your enemy behind you it is a different story. And later with a boost it is much easier to get back in the fight. I tried this with Norra in the 10th (and so far unnamed) Horton Salm squad.

I doubt Flight Assist will bring the Generic E-wings to the tables. And when it comes to Corran Horn he can really use a regenerating Astromech (R2-D2 or R5-P9). Perhaps Etahn A’baht could use it though.

I think Flight-Assist is a very good upgrade (I hope it was not too good, because while I want an upgrade for my T65s I still want a balanced game). There are old Astromechs that become even less relevant now (R2-F2, R3, R5). I think Flight-Assist helps where it was mostly needed without just making T65 more like th T70.

Y-wing: Now, on top of my list, I want new unique Y-wing pilots. There are several to choose from within Star Wars Canon universe.
Z95: The headhunter needed this flight assistance just as bad as the T65 did.

10 most important X-wing upgrade cards

Starting to play X-wing Miniatures can be a challenge. There are quite many cards with quite different effects and to get best effect you want them to work well together or with your pilot. Where to start?

This list is written with a Rebel (Resistance) player in mind, but many cards are very useful for Imperial or Scum lists as well. It is also quite focused on classic A/B/X/Y-wing lists.

These are the 10 upgrade cards I recommend that you familiarize with. They are all quite straight forward to play.

10. Autothrusters
For ships that can use them Autothrusters is a very good defensive measurement (much better than Stealth Device I would say).

9. Advanced Sensors
Advance Sensors requires a little thinking. It allows you to do an action and a red maneuver (instead of no action). With Push The Limit it allows you to do two actions, a green maneuver, and have no stress afterwards. For B- and E-wings this can be very useful. (#9 on this list used to be Fire Control System which is easier to use).

8. BB-8 (Astromech)
Especially (T-65) X-wing high skill pilots (such as Luke and Wedge) can make very good use of BB-8.

7. Primed Thrusters (Tech)
This is T-70 X-wing only, and allows you too boost when you are stresed. Boosting after a red manuever allows you to position yourself in flexible and unpredictable ways. The alternative here is the slightly more expensive Pattern Analyzer which allows you any action, but just the round you get stress.

6. Targeting Astromech (Astromech)
The T-70 X-wings have 3 great red maneuvers. With Targeting Astromech you get a free target lock, and the price of a red manuever is very low.

5. Crack Shot (Elite)
A 1pt card that basically produces one extra damage once. I shield upgrade is 4p. You may have a better use for your Elite slot, but keep Crack Shot in mind, especially for A-wings who get two Elite slots (A-Wing Test Pilot) and just roll 2 red dice.

4. R3-A2 (Astromech)
To deal stress to whoever you target is usually very good. Look for pilots who can deal with stress (Nien Numb, Braylen Stramm).

3. Twin Laser Turret (Turret)
This is one of the most feared weapons in the Galaxy. 360 degrees, range 2-3, and very likely to cause 1-2 damage. Particularly good with Horton Salm (your opponent will kill him first).

2. Veteran Instinct (Elite)
Sometimes 2 extra skill makes all the difference, and 1pt is cheap. The problem is obviously that it occupies your Elite slot. Alternatively check out Adaptability for 0pt.

1. Push The Limit (Elite)
Allows you to do two actions (and get a stress). As long as you can make a green maneuver next turn that is fantastic (and you can keep pushing the limit). This is most useful for A-wings that have 4 actions to choose from and plenty of green maneuvers. Sometimes it is great for T-70 X-wings, B-wings and the Millenium Falcon (YT-1300 + Title).

Ship specific upgrades
Some cards are almost mandatory and thus not included above:

  • Integrated Astromech (X-wing)
  • Alliance Overhaul (ARC-170)
  • Chardaan Refit (A-Wing)
  • A-Wing Test Pilot (A-Wing)
  • Millenium Falcon (YT-1300)

If you fly the above ships, make sure you understand these upgrades.

Free upgrades
Some upgrades are free (except they use an upgrade slot) or saves cost. If your ship can take them, think twice before leaving them out.

  • Trick Shot (0p Elite)
  • Adaptability (0p Elite)
  • Guidance Chip (0p Modifications – missiles/torpedoes only)
  • Extra Munitions (2p – instead of second missile/torpedo/bomb)
  • Collision Detector (0p System)

Unique T-65 X-wing Titles

Update 2018-01-14: Flight-Assist Astromech is here. We will probably not get any other X-wing fixes soon (and perhaps none are needed), nevertheless I like my below idea with PS4-specific titles.

There is an ongoing discussion about fixes for the X-wing (in the X-wing Miniatures game). I wrote another post about possible X-wing upgrades.

I now have another idea. The game is called X-wing and the X-wing ship could be a little special. I imagine and think that many of those T-65 were built by Incom, but later during the Galactic civil war (and perhaps even later on) X-wings were built in small shops, small batches, not always with the same original components available. Over the years X-wings were worn, damaged in battles, refitted for special missions, repaired with available parts, subjected to the forces of the Galaxy and adjusted to their pilots preferences.

In the game the concept Title can refer to a ship model (BTL-A4) or a unique individual ship (Millenium Falcon). In this way, there can be many unique X-wing titles, all corresponding to a unique X-wing with its history, flaws and upgrades.

Below I have created (by the X-wing game standards) many X-wing Titles. They are all Unique and they are not to be used with the T-70 X-wing (or any other X-wing that may come). I think it is fine that the X-wing is having many titles in ways no other ships have. The X-wing was the most common starfighter on the Rebel side, yet it has very few upgrade options in the game. The ships could survive many years while I imagine the Empire scrapped TIE fighters that didn’t match specifications to ensure a consistent pilot experience.

I have no information on how the X-wings were identified. I guess they all had some kind of build number, and in the below list they have the format “X-123”. It is not a model, it is a specific ship. If you have information on how the identical ships where named/numbered feel free to let me know!

All the titles are supposed to be good for its points. The X-wing needs a little fix, and these titles should work that way. Most of them have a positive squad cost, and many have a restriction, requirement or drawback. They cannot be thrown in without thought just to make your squad better.

The purpose is to make your X-wings a little better, but perhaps more to personalize them and to make them fit your play style or your current list better. And they should be a little more challenging and interesting to fly.

Some titles have a negative cost, but not for the purpose of being able to fit 5 identical X-wings into a swarm.

Several titles have a Pilot Skill must equal to 4 requirement: they are only for the rarely used 23p Red Squadron Pilot. These Titles may seem a little better, but its because the Red Squadron Pilot (without an Elite upgrade) is in a particularly bad place (I dont think the 4PS B/Y/Z95/X-T70 generics see much play either). These PS4 only upgrades often reflect some more experimental technology that requires much training to use, thus those titles are only available to specially trained (generic) pilots (not to famous named pilots).

X-Wing ID Restriction Cost Description
X-113 1 When attacking with Primary Weapon you may roll 1 extra red die. You cannot attack next round.
X-116 1 When attacking with Primary Weapon you may roll 1 extra red die. If you do so, in Deal Damage Step, ignore all Crits.
X-122 1 When attacking with Primary Weapon, if defender cancelled any Crits with Shield tokens, deal one stress token to defender.
X-17K -1 You can not equip an Astromech. This X-wing has 3 shields.
X-08X PS=4+ 1 This X-wing has a hull value of 2. Once per round when defending you may roll one extra green die.
X-14D Targeting Astromech 1 When you Spend a Target Lock you may keep it (instead of discarding it).
X-14K Targeting Astromech 1 You may acquire Target Lock on any ship in play regardless of range.
X-16F R2 Astromech 1 When executing a 4-K-turn, you may treat it as a speed 3, 4 or 5 K-turn.
X-19A R2 Astromech 1 When executing a 1-bank, you may treat it as a 1-turn the same direction.
X-222 R5 Astromech 0 At the End Phase, you may discard your Astromech to recover 1 shield.
X-291 1 Your action bar gains the Boost action icon. You cannot equip an Astromech.
X-2B7 0 Your action bar gains the Barrel roll icon. You can not equip an Astromech.
X-30P 2 When you equip this card, place 1 ordnance token on a Torpedo Upgrade card. When you are instructed to discard an Upgrade card, you may discard 1 ordnance token on that card instead.
X-370 PS=4+ 1 You must use a T-70 X-Wing maneuver dial
X-379 PS=4+ 1 You must use an A-wing maneuver dial. Your X-wing has 2 hull.
X-414 PS=4 0 Your action bar gains the Cloak Action
X-416 PS=4 1 Your action bar gains the Cloak Action. You may equip one Elite upgrade card.
X-441 PS=4 0 If your maneuver causes you to overlap X-442 and you are touching X-442 you may perform your action as if you did not overlap. You may equip one Elite upgrade card.
X-442 PS=4 0 If your maneuver causes you to overlap X-441 and you are touching X-441 you may perform your action as if you did not overlap. You may equip one Elite upgrade card.
X-460 PS=4 1 You may equip two missile upgrade cards. Get the cheapest one for free. You cannot equip a Torpedo. You may equip one Elite upgrade card.
X-465 PS=4 0 Your pilot skill is 5. You must equip one Elite upgrade card.
X-466 PS=4 1 Your pilot skill is 6. You must equip two different Elite upgrade cards.
X-484 PS=4 0 You may equip one Crew and one Elite upgrade card.
X-491 PS=4 1 Dual Card. You may equip on Elite upgrade card. You may flip this card during the end phase.
A) Your PS=0
B) Your PS=12
X-4X0 PS=4 0 You may equip one Illicit upgrade card and one Elite upgrade card.
X-502 PS=4+ 1 If your maneuver cases you to overlap a ship or an obstacle you may choose to instead execute another slower manuever with the same bearing (including 1-turn).
X-5LX 1 When you attack, the defender does not benefit from obstacles.

Upgrades for T-65 X-wing

Update 2018-01-14: Flight-Assist Astromech is here.

In the X-wing game the original X-wing (T-65) is by many considered underpowered. The exception is Biggs Darklighter and to some extent Tarn Mison (with R7 Astromech) who are useful thanks to their Pilot ability. But the rebel aces (thematically) Luke Skywalker and Wedge Antilles are not worth their points.

It is interesting to compare the orginal X-wing (T-65) with the new T-70 X-wing. For 3 extra points you get:

  1. Shield upgrade (4p)
  2. Engine upgrade (4p)
  3. Better maneuver dial with Tallon Roll
  4. A tech upgrade (which can take Primed Thrusters for just 1p)

It is rare to spend 4p on a Shield upgrade, but it is very clear that a T-70 for 24p is much more value than a T-65 for 21p.

In practice the lowest cost for an X-wing is 22p (25p for a T-70) because it always makes sense to add Integrated Astromech and any (1p) Astromech. The thing with Integrated Astromech was that it improved the T-65, but it improved the T-70 as well, so it didn’t make the T-65 more viable.

At 25p it is possible to make a “swarm” of 4. For the T-65 you can still just include 4, possibly in a XXXXZ-squad (but then BBBBZ is usually more effective).

If you read X-wing forums you find that there is “demand” for a “fix” for the X-wing. Such a fix may never come, but arguments are:

  • The game is called X-wing: the title ship should not suck
  • Luke and Wedge should be good pilots (Darth Vader got a powerful fix)

Some complicating factors are:

  • Biggs (and Tarn) are already good, and could be too powerful with a fix
  • Any fix that also makes the T-70 more powerful may cause more problems that it solves
  • The maneuver dial can’t trivially be changed to be on par with the T-70 (so just a title or modification is not quite enough)
  • Integrated Astromech occupies the modification “slot” so a new modification (as well as otherwise potentially useful Guidance Chips or Vectored Thrusters) wont do
  • Since the two ship types are called “X-wing” and “T-70 X-wing” it requires some ugliness to address only the old T-65
  • From the very beginning, Wave 1, the X-wing was under powered compare to the Tie Fighter

So, we are looking for an Astromech, a Title or possibly a Torpedo, that wont be unbalanced with Y-wing, ARC-170, E-wing, T-70 or Biggs. It should make both the generic and named pilots viable. It would also be fun with something that promotes a swarm/squad of (just) X-wings.

The generics
For the generics I would like a fix that allows a swarm with 5 of them. That would ideally be a negative cost Title or Astromech, or possibly a Torpedo just like Chardaan Refit. This would increase the difference between T-65 and T-70, positioning the T-65 between the Z95 and the T-70. Thematically this could be “refurbished”, “old”, “ill maintained”, “original”, “refit” or something else.

The named pilots
The named pilots suffer more from lack of repositioning (Boost or Barrel Roll). They are hardly helped by Push the Limit since they have few actions. Engine Upgrade or Vectored Thrusters are modfications and compete with Integrated Astromech. Luke Skywalker could need Veterans Instincts so then not even the Elite slot is available.

What should it be (good at)
There are two ideas about what the X-wing is (good at). The first is that it should be Jack of all Trades. The other is that it should be a jouster (because it is all it can do).

Jousting is about two (groups of) ships approching each other, firing and evading. As they pass each other they both U-turn and keep shooting. This continues until one (side) is dead. It is possible to make mathematical models or simultions (and people have) to decide jousting efficiency. It turns out Z-95 headhunter is best value, the B-wing sligtly less, and the X-wing falls behind.

As the B-wing has more other options (barrel roll, cannon, two torpedoes) it leaves the X-wing in a very bad place.

Fixes to the X-wing tend to fall in different categories:

  1. Lowering the cost to make it a better Jouster
  2. Making it more like the T-70 (boost)
  3. Adding defensive capabilities: evade or cloak
  4. Give it some other (unique) capability

While there are creative suggestions to improve the X-wing I hesitate about something that would be a more or less mandatory and exotic upgrade. I mean, if ALL X-wings played suddenly have Cloak, and they are played much, that changes the entire game. If X-wings more often than not would carry Proton Torpedoes that would not change the game much.

Upgrades I would like to see
Disclaimer: Star Wars lore is not my speciality.

** T-65 Standard Torpedo: 1p Torpedo. X-wing (Rebel Alliance) only. As Proton Torpedo.
At 1p it is not an autoinclude (like Chardaan Refit). It also requires a choice between offensive Guidance Chips and defensive Integrated Astromech. Finally, it does not help Biggs, but it does help generics as well as named pilots.

** T-65 Standard R2: -1p Astromech. X-wing (Rebel Alliance) only.
This would allow swarm of 5 T-65 X-wings.

** S-Foils: 0p, Title, Dual Card. X-wing (Rebel Alliance) only.
Side A: Cruise Position): When executing a maneuver you may treat it as +1-speed maneuver with the same bearing. Immediately after rolling attack dice, change one (if any) Crit to a Hit.
Side B: Attack Position): Immediately after rolling attack dice, if you rolled no Crits you may change one Hit to a Crit. 3 turns and 4 straight are red maneuvers.
You may flip this card before revealing your maneuver dial.
This would make the X-wing a little bit more interesting and challenging to fly. It would slightly compensate for lack of boost and repositioning capability, but at a cost. It would give it a slight edge compared to B/Y/Z95.

I like that S-foils always are both good and bad. I don’t want the cruise mode to essentially give it a boost and I don’t want the attack mode to be significantly more powerful than B-wing or T-70. Also, I want the change in attack efficiency to be effective regardless of range, focus and target lock.

** Overdrive: Torpedo, Dual Card. X-wing only.
Side A: Overdrive Compressor): 4p
Side B: Overdrive Pack): 1p (discard after use)
Both sides: Action: Perform a free Boost Action. Then receive one Focus token and one Stress token.

I would much like to see this for the Z95 Headhunter as well (as a Modification or Missile).

I have made the above cards available as a printable PDF File.

Below is a collection of links to fix suggestions elsewhere.

** T-65 X-wing starfighter: Add one shield, -3p, title (I presume)
My guess is that this is way too powerful.

** T-68 Prototype: If your pilot skill is 6 or higher and you are not stressed when you reveal a white 3 turn, you may perform a 3 tallon roll in the same direction, 2 or 3 points.
To me, this just makes it a worse T-70 and it does not help the generics.

** StealthX: Your action bar gains the [cloak] action icon. ? points
This would widen the use of the X-wing and it is a nice idea. It would be very good with Biggs though, completely unbalanced.

** Rogue One: When you perform a focus action any friendly x wing at range 1-2 may perform a free target lock action. Add EPT if you don’t have one. Unique 3p title, PS6 or better
I doubt anyone would pay 3p for it, otherwise it is a good idea.

** Rogue Squadron: Reduce cost of Astromechs and Torpedoes by 1p (min 0), Title 0p
Well, if it was 2 points it would be possible to fly 5 of them.

** Two unnamed titles: (Rebel Alliance / T-65 only)
1) When attacking, you may spend a target lock you have on an enemy ship at range 1 to perform an attack against that ship even if it is outside your firing arc.
2) At the start of the combat phase, if you have a target lock on an enemy ship, you may assign it one stress token.
While useful, I think it is weird to add a new capability to T-65 that T-70 cant have. The first one is thematically odd, and the second one would be very powerful, esp if not unique.

** XJ-5 Title: Add boost to the upgrade bar, add Tech slot, lose Astromech slot. Treat 3 forward and 2 banks as greens.
Since Integrated Astromech exist I think the loss of Astromech is too bad. I am also sceptical about adding the Tech slot. Green maneuvers are not that useful since it only has one red maneuver. Otherwise, adding maneuverability and removing something else makes sense.

** Engine Refit: Add the (Boost) and (Evade) actions to your action bar. Torpedo 2p.
The author intended it to be available also to the T-70 (which would add only Evade). The Rebels/Resistance are not having too many ships with evade actions so I could welcome that. However if all X-wings always add an Evade Action that could change quite much. Also this would be very good with Biggs.

** T-65b: Player may choose to take the (Boost) action. If this is done, subtract (X) from your attack skill for this turn. Title (I suppose)
This could work. It could also be an Astormech. (Should not be T-65b though, se below)

** Refurbished Astromech: -2 points. Your upgrade bar loses all upgrade icons besides [Astromech slot].
This would reduce the generic cost to 19 which is quite fine.

** Corran Horn and giving it Boost+Shield.
The first option does not help any current pilots, and the second option is still just worse than the T-70, but now for the same price.

** Free Proton Torpedo
Not such a bad idea?

** No name title: Title that when a R2 is equipped all 1,2 & 3 maneuvers are green.

** S-Foil: Take a weapons disabled token and evade token to make all moves white. Modification or Title.
Maybe a good idea!

** Some title: Enemy ships in arc at range 2-3 cannot perform boost or barrel roll actions.
I think a title that will be added to several ships, almost as a default/fix should do something with the ship itself, not with plenty of other ships at the board.

** Astromech: If an enemy ship within 1-2 and inside your arc performs a barrel roll or boost action you may perform a free barrel roll action.
Well, that is interesting. Perhaps better as a title.

** Lightened Payload: Torpedo, -1p.
This would obviously be useful.

** T-65C-A4: Your range 1 combat bonus extends to range 1-2, but at range 3 you roll one less red die. You may treat the 3 bank as a red segnors loop of the same direction. Title 1p

** T-65D: Replace your astromech slot with a system slot, title 1p.
Very expensive since Integrated Astromech is lost.

** S-Foils: Dual Card:
S-foils in cruise position: reduce your Primary attack value to 2. During the end step, you must perform a free boost action.
S-foils in attack position: When you declare an attack on a target you have locked, you may turn an eye into a hit.

Not sure how it would exactly work, but I can see it being useful and interesting.

** A -1p Astromech that does nothing

** Give it 4 attack dice

**** A fine post with several suggestions. ****

T-65B Model: Lore wise this was the sturdiest X-Wing. Due to its heavy armor, and early design, it was still slower than the Tie Fighters. It was very easy to learn and fly. T-65B Title Card increases Hull Value, and Shield Value by 1. Decreases cost by 1. Your 4 Straight becomes a red maneuver.

T-65D-A1 Model: This was an attempt to remove the Astromech from the X-Wing. They were trying to use computer in place of the Astromech to help the pilot. T-65D-A1 Title Card removes the Astromech Slot. Grants 1 Focus when in range 1 of an enemy ship.

T-65AC4 Model: This was perhaps the last T-65 Model. It was the superior model as it had increased engine power, increased Torpedo capacity, and armor. T-65AC4 Model Title Card decreases Torpedo or Missile Cost by 2. Grants the Boost Icon.

T-65 Missile Conversion Card: There is reference in the books and in the internet that T-65’s used Torpedoes as their standard mission load out. They could be equipped with Missiles, if a mechanic spent enough time to do so. T-65 Missile Conversion Modification changes the Torpedo slot to Missiles. If using the T-65AC4 Title Card, this card costs 0

X-Wing Stutter Fire Card (X-Wing, and T-70 X Wing): Discard this card, to lower the Agility Value of your Target by 2 (no damage)

X-Wing Quad Fire Card (X-Wing, and T-70 X Wing): Discard this card to increase your attack value by 1 for this turn

Elite Pilot Talent called “Red Squadron” (X-Wing and T-70 X-Wing). If you have a Target Lock on your enemy, your other Ships may treat that Target Lock as their own (IE One Target Lock for all of your ships)

Those are all interesting ideas.

3 Astromechs that I came up with myself a little while ago. I dont like them much anymore.

10x Horton Salm

I will post ten different squads with Horton Salm. Work in progress.

Links Other Squads , X-Wing Wiki , My Pilot Browser

** Horton, Tycho and Jake ** (100)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6), R5 Astromech (1), Shield Upgrade (4)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26), A-wing test pilot (0),
 1x Push the Limit (3), Proton Rockets (3), Guidance Chip (0), Veteran Instincts (1)
1x A-wing Jake Farrel (24), A-wing test pilot (0),
 1x Push the Limit (3), Proton Rockets (3), Guidance Chip (0), Veteran Instincts (1)

My opponent, flying four different TIE fighters, did everything to kill Horton Salm right away and he went down the second round of combat firing only the round before. But that gave the A-wings a smooth start and I won in the end. R2-D2 could have been a better option than Shield Upgrade, but in my case I would hardly have been able to use it. R2-D6 + Veteran Instincts would be another option. You could also replace the A-wing Veteran instincts with Outmaneuver or Predator, and use less points on Horton Salm (I think that would generally be better, but the A-wings much benefit from highest skill). The Proton Rockets effectively cost 5p (since you use them instead of Chardaan refit), but they turned out to be very good on Jake and Tycho. The A-wings usually last a few rounds, frequently gets within range 1, and with Push The Limit you can easily roll 5 dice, reroll with target lock and then apply Guidance Chip + Focus.

** 3 old veterans ** (99)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6), BTL-A4 (0)
1x X-Wing Wedge Antilles (29), BB-8 (2), Stay on Target (2), Integrated Astromech (0)
1x ARC-170 Norra Wexley (29), Weapons Engineer (3), Push the Limit (3)

These are three pilots with stronger than normal 3 dice attack capabilites. With high skills you can deal damage fast and all ships can sustain significant damage. Wedge with Stay on target, BB-8 and skill 9 typically has quite a few options if he makes a green straight 2 maneuver. Norra can use the two target locks defensively. There are of course options. An R2 droid on Horton can be useful… if he survives to use it. There are plenty of elite skills that can be useful for Wedge (you are never going wrong with Predator). It is also possible to replace the ARC-170 with a low skill B-wing and Heavy Laser Cannon, and equip Horton with R2-D6 and Swarm Tactics.

** BBB-Horton ** (99)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6), BTL-A4 (0), R3 Astromech (2)
3x B-Wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22)

A squad design to make your opponent at least consider not targetting Horton first. Anyway, the R3 Astromech is a decent combo with Hortons special ability and BTL-A4.

** The Force is with Horton ** (99)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
1x X-Wing Luke Skywalker (28), R7-T1 (3), Opportunist (4), Integrated Astromech (0)
1x X-Wing Wes Janson (29), Targeting Astromech (2), Stay on Target (2), Integrated Astromech (0)

I wanted to make something useful with old Rebel Alliance X-wings and came up with this squad. Horton usually attracts enough hatred anyway, so he gets no upgrade besides the turret. Both Luke and Wes have some repositioning ability with R7-T1 and Stay on Target to make them competetive against more modern ships. Stay on Target works nicely with Targeting Astromech. What turned out to be surprisingly useful was Opportunist – actually quite worth its 4 points. Wes Janson attacks first and even if he would not produce much damage he should leave the enemy quite vulnerable to Horton and Luke. I would probably replace R7-T1 with BB-8 (which is good with Opportunist) if I use this list again.

** Veteran Alpha Strike ** (99)
1x Y-wing Horton Salm (25)
 Proton Torpedoes (4), Extra Munitions (2), Guidance Chip (0), R2 Astromech (1)
1x X-wing Wes Janson (29)
 Veteran Instinct (1), BB-8 (2), Integrated Astromech (0)
1x X-wing Wedge Antilles (29)
 Proton Torpedoes (4), Guidance Chip (0), Crack Shot (1), R2 Stromech (1)

Wes Janson fires first and should strip your target of defensive tokens. Then Wedge and Horton unleashes Proton Torpedoes. It is quite possible you can take out a hi profile enemy ship before it has shot a single shot this way and you should have an upper hand after the first round of fire.

** Horton, Wedge and Nera ** (100)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
1x X-Wing Wedge Antilles (29),
 BB-8 (2), Guidance Chip (0), Proton Torpedoes (4), Trick Shot (0)
1x B-Wing Nera Dantels (26)
 Proton Torpedoes (4), Extra Munitions (2), Guidance Chip (0), Fire Control System (2)

The only way to make Horton survive is the make the rest of the list more intimidating. Nera usually saves the torpedoes for occations when the primary weapon can not be used. Wedge is very dangerous with Proton Torpedoes and Guidance chip.

** Horton and Chewbacca **
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
1x Y-wing Gold Squadron Pilot (18), Ion Cannon Turret (5)
1x YT-1300 Chewbacca (42) (HOR), Push The Limit (3), Millenium Falcon (1) (original)

This is in a way a variant of the classical YYYY-squad (with TLTs). When the Y-wings die early they at least dont die in vain since Chewbacca gets another shot.

Wookie Commandoes is an alternative to Push The Limit, giving you two points. I tried it and upgraded to a second Twin Laser Turret and gave Chewbacca Crack Shot.

** Horton & Horn ** (98)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
1x E-Wing Corran Horn (35), Advanced Sensors (3), Push the Limit (3), R2-D2 (4)
1x B-Wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Collision Detector (0)

First, understand how to use Advanced Sensors (the idea is not to stress yourself with Push the Limit and start every round stressed). Corran Horn is supposed to (I have read) be best in the end game so the B-wing is there to carry a big “shoot at me” label.

** Gold Squadron ** (100)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
3x Y-Wing Gold Squadron Pilot (18), Ion Cannon Turret (5)

Well, this might not be better than 4 TLTs, but I like it anyway. Hortons job is to stay a little bit outside the battle and do damage. The Gold Squadron Pilots should get in there, make it really messy. I put Horton right on top of an asteroid, that was not good…

** <Draft> ** (99)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6), R2-D6 (1), Trick Shot (0)
1x ARC-170 Norra Wexley (29), Weapons Engineer (3), Expertise (4), Flight-Assist Astromech (1)
1x Auzituck Lohwwrick (28), Wookie Commandoes (1), Veteran Instincts (1)

This list performed well, but I would change it a bit next time. It makes little sense to have Weapons Engineer together with Expertise and your opponent should take out Norra first. The most obvious option is to replace Weapons Engineer with Tailgunner. The somewhat less obvious option is to simply swap Veteran Instincts and Expertise, but then Wookie Commandoes should go.

** Crimson & Horton ** (99)
1x Y-Wing Horton Salm (25), Twin Laser Turret (6)
1x K-wing Miranda Doni (29), Twin Laster Turret (6)
1x B/SF-17 Crimson Specialist (4), Ordnance Silos (2), Thermal Detonators (3), Deflactive Plating (1), Collision Detector (0)

This should be an inherently strong squad that can’t go too wrong. It can benefit from Trajectory Simulator (1p). Other bombs, such as Bomblet Generator, are of course also an option (that would free up a few points for upgrades on Horton or Miranda.

X-wing squads

Links: Horton Salm Squads , X-Wing Wiki , My Pilot Browser

I will post (rebel/resistance) X-wing squads I have played here.

** Big Nien Numb Squad ** (100)
1x T70 X-Wing Nien Numb (29), Push the Limit (3), R3-A2 (2)
2x A-Wing Prototype Pilot (17), Chardaan Refit (-2)
3x Z-95 Bandit Squadron Pilot (12)

This worked very well. Nien Numb is good at handling out stress. I tried to replace Nien Numb with Wedge Antilles but was less lucky. The idea is to have a large squad with some edge. For 34p there are many options to replace Nien Numb.

** Angry Chewbacca ** (100)
1x YT-1300 Chewbacca (42), Recon Specialist (3), Jan Ors (2), Millenium Falcon (1), Push the Limit (3)
2x B-Wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Fire Control System (2)

This is the new (Hereos of the Resistance) Chewbacca, but the old Millenium Falcon. The idea is that Chewbacca can make green maneuvers, Push the Limit and get 2xFocus + 1xEvade, or 1xFocus + 2xEvade every round. When the B-wings die Chewbacca gets a bonus shot. First time I used this squad I had 4xZ95 instead of B-wings, but they were not enough of a threat to keep the fire away from Chewbacca (and you do want Millenium Falcon left in the end).

** Very Aggressive B-wings ** (99)
1x B-wing Keyan Farlander (29), Fire Control System (2), Expose (4), Experimental Interface (3)
1x B-wing Nera Dantels (26)
 Fire Control System (2), Proton Torpedo (4), Extra Munitions (2), Guidance Chip (0), Trick Shot (0)
1x X-wing Biggs Darklighter (25), Integrated Astromech (0), R3 Astromech (2)

Keyan Farlander can use Experimental Interface to be stressed and Exposed, and then use his stress as a focus. Thanks to Biggs, enemy can’t fire at Keyan. Nera is a royal pain (save your torpedoes until you have nobody in your primary firing arc). Admittedly I flew this squad with the R4-D6 astromech, which sucked, because it does not cancel criticals, and did not help Biggs at all.

** Wedge and his crack team ** (100)
1x X-wing Wedge Antilles (29), Integrated Astromech (0), BB-8 (2), Adaptability (0)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26), Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Push the Limit (3), Wired (1)
1x A-wing Jake Farrell (24), Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Adaptability (0), Trick Shot (0)
1x Z95 Airen Cracken (19)

I got this squad from my oppenent who wanted me to fly a good Wedge squad. The core idea is that 4 ships with 8 skill is very powerful in itself. And Airen helping Wedge to get two actions make Wedge a very hard hitter. While I like the idea, Wedge is not that good for the price and I would have wanted Push the Limit on Jake also.

** An odd squad ** (97+)
1x ARC-170 Braylen Stramm (25), Alliance Overhaul (0), Tactician (2), R3-A2 (2)
1x T70 X-Wing Jess Pava (25), Integrated Astromech (0), R2 Astromech (1), Pattern Analyzer (2)
2x A-wing Green Squadron (19)
 Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Push the Limit (3), Trick Shot (0)

Four competent ships, all with the same skill (3) allowing them to move and shoot in any order. Jess leads the way, the others staying within range 1, maximizing his special ability. At 97 points, there is room to replace Jess’s R2 and/or Trick Shot with something else. Braylen can deliver 1-2 stress which is a powerful and flexible weapon.

** Another Odd Squad ** (100)
1x ARC-170 Braylen Stramm (25), Alliance Overhaul (0), Tactician (2), R3-A2 (2)
1x X-wing T70 Jess Pava (25), Integrated Astromech (0), Targeting Astromech (2), Pattern Analyzer (2)
1x X-wing Tarn Mison (23), Integrated Astromech (0), R7 Astromech (2)
1x Tie Fighter Zeb Orrelios (13), Sabine’s Masterpiece (1), Hot Shot Blaster (3)

Another squad of four ships with skill 3. Tarn Mison with R7 is not bad and Jess Pava needs wingmen.

** Acrobatic X-wings ** (100)
1x T70 X-wing Ello Asty (30)
 Integrated Astromech (0), R2 Astromech (1), Push the Limit (3), Primed Thrusters (1)
1x T70 X-wing Snap Wexley (28), Integrated Astromech (0), Targeting Astromech (2),
 Pattern Analyzer (2), Proton Torpedoes (4), Adaptability (0)
1x T70 X-wing Blue Ace (27), Integrated Astromech (0), BB-8 (2)

These three X-wings are all capable of moving in very acrobatic ways, and still come out with focus and/or target lock.

** Alpha Strike ** (100)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26), A-wing test pilot (0),
 Concussion Missiles (4), Push the Limit (3), Swarm Tactics (2), Guidance Chip (0)
1x Z-95 Airen Cracken (19), Concussion Missiles (4), Push The Limit (3), Guidance Chip (0)
1x Z-95 Lieutenant Blount (17), Assault Missiles (5), Guidance Chip (0), Veteran Instincts (2)
1x Z-95 Bandit Squadron Pilot (12), Concussion Missiles (4), Guidance Chip (0)

Tycho, Airen and Bandit should all shot with Target Lock+Focus at skill 8. Blount has no focus, but he cant miss. I lost with this squad but it was a funny game. In hindsight I would have been better off with Ion Pulse Missiles on Lieutenant Blount.

** Big Bad Boys ** (100)
1x YT-1300 Chewbacca (42), Millenium Falcon (1), Jan Ors (2), Kyle Katarn (3), Push the Limit (3)
1x YT-2400 Leebo (34), Outrider (5), Heavy Laser Cannon (7), Recon Specialist (3), Trick Shot (0)

This is the old Chewbacca and the old Millenium Falcon. You can typically get focus+evade on both ships every round. Chewbacca can even get 2 evade plus focus or target lock. My idea is to fly defensively, constantly making green maneuvers with Chewbacca, and you will make damage anyway. Your problem can be that your enemy will do everything to kill Leebo first and stay close enough to him to avoid his laser. It could be better to replace Heavy Laser Cannon with Mangler Cannon and add Stealth Device or a 3p Elite.

** X-wing swarm ** (100)
1x T70 X-wing Jess Pava (25), Targeting Astromech (2), Primed Thrusters (1)
1x T70 X-wing Blue Squadron Novice (24), R2 Astromech (1)
1x X-wing Tarn Mison (23), R7 Astromech (2)
1x X-wing Rookie Pilot (21), R2 Astromech (1)
 + Integrated Astromech (0) on all

You just can’t squeeze 5 X-wings into a 100p squad. 4 X-wings can be done, but the options are quite limited. This squads takes full advantage of Jess’s pilot ability. Tarn Mison with R7 is surprisingly good. You may prefer Pattern Analyzer (and a 1p Astromech) on Jess. The Rookie Pilot can use another Astromech as well (R5 comes to mind). It is not the easiest swarm to fly as you have two different skills and two different (although similar) maneuver dials: all 4 pilots different.

** The A-wing Aces Squad ** (99)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26), Trick Shot (0)
1x A-wing Jake Farrell (24), Adaptability (0)
1x A-wing Arvel Crynyd (23)
1x A-wing Gemmer Sojan (22)
 + Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Push the Limit (3) on all

You can argue about a lot of things but this is the definite A-wing Aces Squad. You can of course put Veteran Instincts on Jake and Adaptability on Tycho for 100 points. Edit: check Jukers below.

** AAAA-Etahn ** (99)
1x E-wing Etahn A’baht (32), R2-D2 (4), Push The Limit (3), Collision Detector (0)
4x A-wing Prototype Pilot (17), Chardaan Refit (-2)

After the BBB-Etahn below I thought I would make a better Etahn supporting a little A-wing swarm. Big mistake. Etahn is not worth the upgrades and pushing/stressing him is not pretty. This squad requires more than minor fixes to be good.

** BBB-Etahn ** (98)
1x E-wing Etahn A’baht (32)
3x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22)

The idea here is simply to make good use of Etahns’ special ability. Also, with Barrel Roll, Etahn is quite capable of staying in formation with (or just behind) the slow B-wings. Possible upgrades for Etahn: Swarm Tactics, Elusiveness, Veteran Instincts, Wingman, Calculation, Crack Shot, Juke, Snap Shot, Trick Shot) R2-D6 (allows Trick Shot + 1p Elite), Collision Detector (free). When I played this squad I used Fire Control System but that is not good: Etahn fires first, gets Target Lock, then 3 B-wings fire and typically they want to fire at the same enemy until destroyed – Target Lock wasted. For the same reason I would not equip R3-A2.

** XXX-Etahn ** (100)
1x E-wing Etahn A’baht (32), R2 Astromech (1), Collision Detector (1), Crack Shot (1)
3x X-wing Rookie Pilot (21), R2 Astromech (1), Integrated Astromech (0)

This is simple and old fashined, but quite balanced. The R2 Astromechs make it easy to fly the E-wing together with the X-wing (and the price of occational K-turns is not so bad). Etahns’ special ability comes to good use. Four ships with 3 attack dice is always a threat.

** Basic T70s ** (100)
3x T70 X-wing Blue Squadron Novice (24)
 Integrated Astromech (0), Targeting Astromech (2), Primed Thrusters (1)
1x Z95 Airen Cracken (19), Trick Shot (0)
1x A-wing Green Squadron (19)
 Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Adaptability (0), Intimidation (2)

The A-wing could use Elusiveness, Expert Handling or Juke instead depending on your preference. Adaptability gives it the same skill as the X-wings for easy maneuvering. The squad does not require much presentation. However, compared to the naked 24p Blue Squadron Novice, the 3-card-3-p upgrades makes a lot of difference.

** K-wing support ** (100)
1x K-wing Warden Squadron Pilot (23), Sabine Wren (2), Advanced SLAM (2)
 Ion Bombs (2), Conner Net (4), Extra Munitions (2)
1x E-wing Etahn A’bath (32), Fire Control System (2), R2 Astromech (1), Push The Limit (3)
1x X-wing Garven Dreis (26), R2 Astromech (1), Integrated Astromech (0)

This one lost big time. I need more practice with the K-wing wanted to try out pilots I never used before.

** 6-6-6 ** (100)
1x ARC-170 Shara Bay (28), Weapons Engineer (3), Alliance Overhaul (0), Trick Shot (0)
1x B-wing Ibtisam (28), Advanced Sensors (3), Cool Hand (1)
1x K-wing Esege Tuketu (28), Twin Laser Turret (6), Recon Specialist (3)

Another squad that lost. The 6-6-6 PS is a gamble and turned out a bit unlucky twice. The idea here is very simply to have 3 aggressive ships that can take a lot of damage, and share Focus and Target Locks. Ibtisam with Advanced Sensors is quite unpredictable and Twin Laser Turret is usually good. Perhaps I need more practice with the K-wing or with this squad, or perhaps everything is a little too expensive and none of the ships reach their full potential.

** Mixed swarm ** (100)
1x Tie Fighter Sabine Wren (15), Crack Shot (1)
4x A-wing Prototype Pilot (17), Chardaan Refit (-2)
2x Z-95 Bandit Squadron Pilot (12)

If you want a swarm of 6-7 ships you don’t have so many options. Also, you may not own 8 Headhunters or 6 A-wings. I think the extra cost for the A-wings are worth it, but if you want to make it to 7 ships you need to add Headhunters. I was not happy with Sabines performance; she ended up first blocking and then being blocked by my own ships all the time. Fly the A-wings (same dial and skill) in one swarm and the Headhunters in their own little swarm. If you use Sabine, have a plan so she stays behind the others. If you have another A-wing you can use it instead of Sabine. If you have another Z95 you get 4p for upgrades: vectored thrusters for 2 Headhunters come to mind but there are other options (a missile, a shield upgrade, 2x autothrusters).

** Poe Power X-wings ** (98)
1x T70 X-wing Poe Dameron (33),
 Autothrusters (2), Push the Limit (3), R5-P9 (3), Black One (1), Pattern Analyzer (2)
1x X-wing Garven Dreis (26), M9-G8 (3), Integrated Astromech (0)
1x X-wing Tarn Mison (23), R7 Astromech (2), Integrated Astromech (0)

I have seen that many people fly very powerful Poe (or Corran Horn) and my thought has always been that its a very sensitive squad with so many points on one pilot. In this squad Poe is 44 points so you can basically replace him with two X-wings or two B-wings. I have to admit that Poe did not disappoint. With Push the Limit Poe can almost always Focus, and with Poes special ability he can often keep that Focus and exchange it for a shield in the end of the turn. With Boost (and a green 3 straight maneuver) you can often stay quite far away from your enemy and with Autothrusters you are hard to hit at range 3. However, at least I can’t Push the Limit and fly green maneuvers all the time, and I did find use for Pattern Analyzer (which I typically don’t see in such Poe configurations). It does make sense to include Autothrusters (rather than Integrated Astromech) as they help to protect Poe when he needs to regenerate shields. Tarn Mison with R7 is very good on his own. Garven Dreis is there to give Poe extra focus if/when he needs it, and Garven is arguably the weakest link in this squad.

** Suicide Squad ** (100)
1x ARC-170 Braylen Stramm (25), Alliance Overhaul (0), Tactician (2), R3-A2 (2)
1x X-wing Tarn Mison (23), Integrated Astromech (0), R7 Astromech (2)
2x X-wing Rookie Pilot (21), Integrated Astromech (0), Targeting Astromech (2)

My idea was to have 4 rather similar ships with 3 attack dice and to have firepower and hull on my side. It was a royal catastrophy. The X-wing does need a fix. I commanded the squad badly. And Braylen Stramm is too much of an obvious target and too easy to take out.

** Regenerator Aces ** (100)
1x E-wing Corran Horn (35), Push the Limit (3), Advanced Sensors (3), R2-D2 (4)
1x T70 X-wing Poe Dameron (31), Pattern Analyzer (2), R5-P9 (3), Autothrusters (2), Lone Wolf (2)
1x A-wing Prototype Pilot (17), Chardaan Refit (-2)

There are numerous Dameron/Horn lists to be found online, mine is probably not the best one. Most importantly, understand how to use Advanced Sensors (the idea is not to stress yourself with Push the Limit and start every round stressed). The idea with Lone Wolf is that it will make Poe very nasty in the end game. There may be better options.

** Sluggers ** (100)
1x B-wing Nera Dantels (26),
 Plasma Torpedoes (3), Extra Munitions (2), Trick Shot (0), Fire-Control System (2)
1x YT-2400 Wild Space Fringer (30), Mercenary Copilot (2), Outrider (5), Heavy Laser Cannon (7)
1x Y-wing Gold Squadron Pilot (18), Ion Cannon Turret (5)

My usual problems with the YT-2400, Outrider and HCL is that it really draws all fire to it, and the donut. The idea here is to mitigate those problems by making the YT-2400 a little bit less threatening and having something to put in the donut. The Y-wing should fly in the donut, preferably between the YT-2400 and your enemy. Nera can be in the background, but can take different roles and responsibilities depending on your enemy. It is possible to replace Extra Munitions with Flechette Torpedoes.

** Four Cannons ** (100)
2x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Collision Detector (0), Ion Cannon (3)
1x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Collision Detector (0), Flechette Cannon (2)
1x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Collision Detector (0), Mangler Cannon (4)

Four B-wings with Cannons that can deliver Ions, Stress and Crits. Your opponent needs to deal 32 damage. That will be an uphill battle. The weakness of 4 lo-skill-pilots is somewhat compensated for by the ability to deliver Ions and Stress.

** Ten Numb with support ** (100)
1x B-wing Ten Numb (31), Fire Control System (2), Veteran Instinct
3x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22), Collision Detector (0)

Four B-wings, including one ace to deal with other aces.

** Ace EEZ ** (100)
1x E-wing Corran Horn (35), Advanced Sensors (3), Push the Limit (3), R2D2 (4)
1x E-wing Etahn A’baht (32), Fire Control System (2), R2 (1)
1x Z-95 Airen Cracken (19), Crack Shot (1)

Well, E-wings are not famous for being very good. How about two E-wings? Admittedly, this squad lost after a long game with many unlikely dice rolls (both in its favor and against it). The idea with Airen is that he will give extra actions to the E-wings while he lives. Well, that may not be very long since he is by far the easiest to hit target. I will try other variations of this squad (replacing Airen with Sabines Tie, an A-wing, or giving him Veteran Instincts are immediate ideas).

** Green Squadron ** (100)
5x A-wing Green Squadron Pilot (19)
 Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Juke (2), Crack Shot (1)

The weak spot of A-wings is that 2 attack dice sometimes just is not enough (it makes no damage whatsover, regardless how often you shoot). Crack Shot and Juke both cancels evade dice and the chance of getting damage through increases dramatically. Obviously you will use the Evade action a lot.

** Poe, Tycho and Jake ** (98)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26),
 + Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Push the Limit (3), Juke (2)
1x A-wing Jake Farrell (24),
 + Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Push the Limit (3), Juke (2)
1x T70 X-Wing Poe Dameron (31)
 Push the Limit (3), R5-P9 (3), Autothrusters (2), Advanced Optics (2), Black One (1)

Juke is a good fix for A-wings lack of attack dice, especially for the high skill pilots. However Jake wants to Focus and Tycho can be stressed so they both require Push the Limit as well. With 44 points left I decided for a defensive Poe with the new Advanced Optics card, and a total of 98 points which is nice with 8-8-7 skills. The synergy of R5-P9 and Advanced Optics is not perfect. Also, Push the Limit is not perfect with Advanced Optics. However, in practice it turned out fine. Poe enters the battle (round 2-3) with a free Focus, the need for Push the Limit is relaxed, and you have more opportunities to do red maneuvers. If you need to use R5-P9 heavily Advanced Optics will not be so useful (but it always helps in the beginning). I was thinking about other elite skills. An option would be to put Autothrusters on the A-wings (where they are more likely to come to use) and drop Push the Limit from Poe.

** A Little Mix ** (100)
1x A-wing Green Squadron Pilot (19)
1x B-wing Blue Squadron Pilot (22)
 A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Juke (2), Crack Shot (1), Guidance Chip (0), Concussion Missile (4)
1x T70 X-Wing Jess Pava (25), Integrated Astromech (0), R2 Astromech (1), Pattern Analyzer (2)
1x Y-wing Gold Squadron Pilot (18), Twin Laser Turrent (6)

I have tried one-of-each-squads with ABXYZ with quite limited success (the T65 and the bare Z95 dont really perform). This is an attempt with ABXY that turned out fine. All four ships are arguably optimal for their points: A-wing will not attract too much fire with its evade token, and quite early you through it in to black and make that target lock, followed by a U-turn and a nasty missile (even without the missile the A-wing is dangerous with Juke). A bare B-wing is always good value. Jess has threee wingmates just as she likes it and her upgrades allow her to make good use of red maneuvers. The TLT-equiped Y-wing will not go unnoticed. None of the ships (I think) are obvious first target and they do have different qualities against a wide variety of squads. You dont want to end up one-on-one against an Ace with Boost and Barrel roll though.

** Eaden Vrill (sucks) ** (100)
1x YT-2400 Eaden Vrill (32), Gunner (5)
1x T70 X-Wing Nien Numb (29), R3-A2 (2), Snap Shot (2), Pattern Analyzer (2), Integrated Astromech (0)
1x B-Wing Dagger Squadron Pilot (24), Flechette Cannon (2), Fire Control System (2)

This did not work. The idea was obviously that Eaden Vrill should be a good deal as long has he has a stressed opponent to shoot at. Dealing out stress is not so easy though. Nien Numb does that perfectly well for 35p (there are options to Snap Shot, but it works fine). However, with 33p left and R3-A2 already with Nien Numb, there are not so many more options. Flechette Torpedoes only works for ship with up to 4 hull and I thought about using them on Nera, but Nera would be an easy target. Flechette Cannon on Dagger Squadron seemed a better choice. However, not too surprisingly, Eadens 3 attack dice are not so remarkable. And often the B-wing could make the damage with its primary weapon in the first place. Also, the B-wing and X-wing are targetted first (despite Gunner) and with them gone, Eaden is not much of a threat. Finally, Gunner did not deliver and only on very few occations it resulted in (extra) damage dealt.

** Return of the X-wing ** (100)
2x X-wing Rookie Pilot (21), Integrated Astromech (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1)
2x T70 X-wing Blue Squadron Novice (24), Integrated Astromech (0), Targetting Astromech (2), Pattern Analyzer (2)

Before the arrival of Flight-Assist Astromech it was possible to scramble four X-wings, but the Rookie Pilots just didn’t cut it, and Blue Squadron Novice should have at least some Tech and an Astromech, leaving them at 26p or more. Now, with Flight-Assist, Rookie Pilot is a real threat, and there are plenty of good and interesting options for four X-wings and for T65.

** War Birds ** (99)
1x ARC-170 Norra Wexley (29), Adaptability (0), Proton Torpedo (4), Weapons Engineer (3), Guidance Chip (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Alliance Overhaul (0)
1x ARC-170 Shara Bey (28), Veteran Instincts (1), Weapons Engineer (3), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Alliance Overhaul (0)
1x ARC-170 Thane Kyrell (26), Tail Gunner (2), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Alliance Overhaul (0)

With high pilot skills (8/8) Norra and Shara should be able to use Flight-Assist Astromech to secure good shots, often with TL+Focus. Shara can help Norra with a double TL. Thane fits in nicely. As I experienced, if you end up flying against 9PS arc-dodging Aces, this squad will hold up well, but it may not win in the end. Norra should probably have Tail Gunner and Expertise.

** Birds of the Alliance ** (100)
1x ARC-170 Norra Wexley (29), Alliance Overhaul (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Expertise (4), Tail Gunner (2)
1x ARC-170 Shara Bey (28), Alliance Overhaul (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Push the Limit (3), Weapons Engineer (3)
1x ARC-170 Braylen Stramm (25), Alliance Overhaul (0), R3-A2 (2), Tactician (2)

This is my first ARC-list that really delivered. Norra with Expertise can really deliver damage, and with the help of Sharas extra Target Lock 5 hits is not out of reach. Shara, with Flight-Assist Astromech can Push the Limit quite comfortably helping her wingmates while still being a real threat herself. Braylen Stramm is much of an annoyance being able to deliver 1-2 stress and your opponent will perhaps target him first. Norra and Shara will take advantage of it, and Braylen may escape behind enemy lines where he will happily be. Replacing Expertise with Push the Limit is probably quite fine.

** Jukers ** (98)
1x A-wing Tycho Celchu (26), Push the Limit (3)
1x A-wing Jake Farrell (24), Push the Limit (3)
1x A-wing Gemmer Sojan (22)
1x A-wing Green Squadron Pilot (19), Crack Shot (1)
 + Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Juke (2) on all

Admittedly, I flew this one with Arvel Crynyd instead of Gemmer Sojan. I find Arvels pilot ability very hard to exploit. I lost against 9PS arc dodgers, but the list held up surprisingly well.

** Jukers ** (98)
1x A-wing Jake Farrell (24)
 + Chardaan Refit (-2), A-Wing Test Pilot (0), Juke (2), Push the Limit (3)
1x B-wing Keyan Farlander (29), Opportunist (4)
1x K-wing Miranda Doni (29), C3P0 (3), Twin laser Turret (6)

Miranda Rocks with just a TLT. My plan here was to let Miranda and Jake fire first to allow Keyan to use Opportunist, which is a very good card on him.

** Resistance Bomber with Rebel Support ** (100)
1x B/SF-17 Crimson Specialist (27),
 Ordnance Silos (2), Thermal Detonators (3), Deflective Plating (1), Trajectory Simulator (1)
1x X-wing Rookie Pilot (21), Flight Assist Astromech (1), Integrated Astromech (0)

Probably not the best squad ever, but it did quite ok despite I flew it very badly. Somewhat surprised I found that Trajectory Simulator is not that useful. Perhaps I would trade it for something else. The Crimson Specialist pilot ability is nice and works well with Deflective Plating.

** Han and Poe ** (99)
1x YT-1300 Han Solo (46)
 Recon Specialist (3), Jan Ors (2), Millenium Falcon (1), Push the Limit (3)
1x T70 X-Wing Poe Dameron (33)
 Push the Limit (3), R5-P9 (3), Autothrusters (2), Advanced Optics (2), Black One (1)

Well, I think Chewbacca makes more sense. Perhaps with Engine Upgrade.

** Renegades Rule / A salute to 1st edition ** (100)
1x T70 X-Wing Poe Dameron (31)
 Push the Limit (3), R5-P9 (3), Autothrusters (2), Primed Thrusters (1)
3x X-Wing Rookie Pilot (21)
 Integrated Astromech (0), Flight-Assist Astromech (1), Renegade Refit (-2), S-foils (0)

This is perhaps the last list I will every fly with 1st edition, and the only list I ever build with Renegade Refit and S-foils. Well, it was amazing and it completely owned the other squad. The X-wing got its fix, and it is now buried. I doubt theses X-wings are balanced.

X-Wing Miniatures: An introduction

I have been playing X-Wing Miniatures for about a year. I think it is a very good game and I will share some findings, particularly with new players.

I have exclusively played the Rebel (and Resistance) side and I have only played causual games, no tournaments.

What to buy first
I have the same boring advice as everyone else: after your first Core set (the blue Force Awakens box), get a second starter set (the Original core set).

You want 6+6 dice, thus the second start set is good value.

Only if you already have friends that own the game and you just want a squad, and you want to build the strongest possible squad for as little money as possible perhaps you should not get a second (or even a first) core set.

Winning X-wing comes down to a few key factors:

  1. Flying well
  2. Some luck with dice
  3. A good squad

The dice luck is a good thing because it keeps the game interesting until the end!

When it comes to flying well and building a good squad I have some bad news: it is more about avoiding mistakes than to be brilliant! Bad decisions decide the outcome of the game much more often than good decisions.

If you are fighting a decently good opponent this is what will make you lose:

  • Flying off the board: lose your ship immediately.
  • Flying into asteroids (obstacles): you may get damage, you lose an action, and in worst case you even lose an attack. There are (rare) occations when running through an asteroid is a winner, but most of the time it happens by mistake and its a bad thing.
  • Flying into yourself: (blocking yourself) losing an action – if you occationally do it intentionally for a good reason – fine, but by mistake or because you have no option – not good.
  • Not flying as one squad: see below.

What it comes down to is that both squads are equally strong from the beginning. If you make the above mistakes you lose actions and shots and your ships die faster.

Squad Strength
You typically pay 100 points for your squad. You pay for:

  • Upgrade cards
  • Good maneuver dials
  • Special pilot abilites
  • Pilot skill (moving-after-shooting-first-advantage)
  • Actions (all ships have Focus, but you pay extra for Boost, Evade and Barrel roll)

This is all good! But at a fundamental level your squad has

  • a total number of attack dice per round,
  • a total of Hull + Shields (and Evade dice).

If your squad has more attack dice and can take more damage than your opponents’ squad, that is a good start! A player can of course try to compensate for lack of firepower and hull with upgrades, skills and maneuvers: but that makes the squad more sensitive to mistakes.

Also with squad building, it is much easier to make a mistake than to do something brilliant. Bad squad economy:

  • A ship with too many upgrades: some upgrades may be underutilized and when the ship dies they are all lost. Worst of all, unused torpedoes, missiles and bombs (these points are entirely wasted)
  • Multi-ship-combos: double point of failure means that if any ship goes down all ability/upgrade is lost. There are of course good combos, but if you don’t get time to use it until one ship is destroyed, it is bad economy.

There are a few other things that can make your squad very weak against very defensive opponents (like highly skilled Tie Interceptors with autothrusters).

  • Weak firepower: attack value of 3 is much better than 2 against ships that are hard to hit.
  • Poor meneuverability: Y-wings in particular may get very few (forward) shots in a dog fight.

The ironic thing here is that 2 attack dice is very fine against enemy ships with many shields and much hull. It is against ships with Evade + 3 Agility Dice + defensive upgrades (Autothrusters) (and no shields and little hull) that you really need high firepower to do any damage at all.

Flying as one squad
It is critical to fly your squad in a way that your ships support each other.

You and your opponent both have 100p. If you split your squad 50-50, and half the squad is engaging while the other half is not, you fight a 50 vs 100 battle. You will typically lose your 50p while your opponent keeps most of his 100p. So your remaining 50p will face 75p and you lose again. It does not mean that you should, or need to, fly all your ships in tight formation, but

  • If all your squad can take out isolated enemy ship, do it
  • If one or two of your ships gets away from battle, the rest are in trouble

If you have two (perhaps weaker and lower skill) ships fighting against one enemy:

  • even if the enemy gets first shot, and perhaps kills one of your ships, your other ship will still get a shot
  • a ship that is easy to hit (B-wing or Y-wing) will still not be hit if your opponent targets another ship
  • an A-wing (with an Evade token) will often not be shot at, because opponent shoots at anything else that is easier to hit

Evade tokens are very efficient against a single enemy ship, but two or three attacks the same round is much harder to survive.

When you find yourself having lower pilot skill than your opponent you:

  1. Move first: making it hard to Target lock your opponents, and your opponent can pick actions, perhaps boosts or barrel rolls, knowing where your ships are.
  2. Shoot last: risking that your opponents kills you before you shoot back

Moving first has one advantage thought: you know where your enemy is when you move, so you should not need to fly into an opponent (losing an action). If you, on the other hand, can get in the way of (blocking) your opponent, he will lose his action. This can be very bad for him:

  • A lost evade action, which means you can hit a Tie fighter hard
  • A lost target lock, preventing a missile from being shot
  • A lost boost or barrel roll, preventing your opponent from getting in position, or getting out of the attack arc of some of your ships.

Kills count
This is quite obvious but I will mention it anyway. A ship can be in different health states:

  1. Undamaged
  2. Only lost shields
  3. Lost hull, but no criticals
  4. Got criticals
  5. Destroyed

An enemy ship in state 2-3 (and often 4) is equally dangerous to you as a ship with no damage at all. If the enemy squad has a total of 20 shields+hull, and you have produced 15 damage, dealt zero criticals and destroyed no ships, you have removed no threat at all. Only when you destroy a ship and it is taken off the board anything significant is achieved.

A good beginners’ squad
Unfortunately, a squad that is good to fly as a beginner is not the squad you want to buy first. The first squad that comes to mind is:

This is good for a beginner because:

  • Any ship is disposable
  • All ships have 3 attack dice
  • Integrated Astromech makes X-wing really good, and the R2 is disposable (requires a total of 28 damage to destroy squad)
  • Tallon roll is quite efficient to change bad positions into attack positions
  • All ships have the same maneuver dial
  • All ships have the same skill (move in any order)

The last two points help to avoid blocking yourself and makes the squad much easier to fly, especially for beginners.

I understand very well you find this suggestion very boring when there are so many cool ships out there!

A-Wings require the Push the Limit upgrade. You should most likely equip the Chardaan Refit and dont forget to consider the 0-point A-wing test pilot. You almost always make the Evade action and the A-wing will be hard to hit. When occationally hit, its shields will prevent it from getting criticals (as opposed to the Tie Interceptor). For 20p:

Dont worry about getting stressed: there are so many green maneuvers (to combine with a boost if needed). You can replace Trick Shot with Wired for 1p.

Weakness: without Evade you are easy to hit. If you run into another ship or an obstacle you miss your action (both of them, since you have Push the Limit) and your A-wing can die early.

B-wings are really cool, but they are not very easy to fly. The basic setup is:

For 24p it is a dangerous fighter. It is very tempting to start with a high-skill B-wing-pilot and add several upgrades, but it is usually not good. Your opponent will fear your B-wing and focus on killing it first. With one evade dice and a slow maneuver dial the B-wing is an easy target.

If you read online sources it is widely thought that the X-wing is bad. It was true, but Integrated Astromech was released (for 0 points) and it improves the X-wing. Usually you should use the T70 (blue model from Force Awakens) rather than the T65 (the red model from original game). The X-wing is durable, rather maneuverable and has strong base attack: it may not be perfect for everything, but you can’t go very wrong. Suggested beginners configurations:

Y-wings need upgrade cards! Without extra equipment it is a waste of points. The obvious and very efficient option is to equip it with turret weapons: I am not too fond of torpedoes on the Y-wing because it can be hard to get firing opportunities. And as with the B-wing, your super-equipped-Y-wing will be primary target and it will quickly die. Try:

The above Y-wings can obviously benefit from a defensive astromech like R2-D2. Study the maneuver dial of the Y-wing and realise it is the same as the (T65) X-wing (just less green and more red).

Z95 Headhunter
At 12p, the Z95 can be used as a filler in a squad with 3 other ships. However, the A-wing Prototype Pilot with Chardaan Refit at 15p is often a better (superior maneuver dial + more actions + extra evade dice) option.

I have found that with the Headhunter, quantity is a quality of its own. This is not an easy beginners strategy – and who wants to start purchasing several of the worst ship in the game? Don’t get me wrong, I like the Z95 Headhunter much, but it is not the easiest ship to make good use of.

YT-1300 (Millenium Falcon)
The Millenium Falcon is very good – not the least for beginners. First, note that there is the old Millenium Falcon expansion pack, and the new Heroes of the Resistance expansion pack. You want the old one.

The Millenium Falcon is easy to fly well. Its 1-turn-maneuver allows you to navigate around obstacles. Its 3-strength-turret-weapon (you cant use Outer Rim Smuggler) is always dangerous against any opponent.

Note that the Millenium Falcon title is very good (few Rebel ships have evade). Since you will use it heavily you need the Han Solo pilot, the Luke Skywalker crew, or something else to make the attack deadly.

Other rebel ships
I think these above orginal ships are fine for the beginner. Other options are:

  • ARC-170, which I have too little experience with
  • E-wing, which is like a more expensive version of the X-wing, but few powerful ships make the squad more sensitive to mistakes and bad luck.
  • HWK-290 and U-wing, which are more about bringing support/crew to the rest of the squad. They are not so good fighters of themselves, so I would avoid them until you have more experience.
  • K-wing, which is expensive, easy to hit and I dont like bombs much.
  • YT-2400, but I think you are better off with YT-1300.

Upgrade cards and Pilot abilities
My general beginners advice is to focus on quantity before quality, similar ships with the same pilot skill (to make it easier to fly) and avoiding complicated upgrade combos and pilot abilities.

Torpedoes and Missiles are usually better avoided. They (most of the time) require a target lock. For X-wings and B-wings with 3 attack dice, it is almost as good to roll 3 dice and spend a target lock to reroll than it is to roll 4 dice with no rerolls. For A-wings missiles are 2 points extra (since you otherwise use Chardaan Refit). I would suggest:

I used to think that a problem with missiles and torpedoes is that you can load so few of them. The problem is often that you die before you fired them all (even if you just have one), and that you are so eager to fire them that you fire them at first possible opportunity without much effect. A single proton torpedo on a T70 X-wing to get a really nasty range 3 attack later in the game can work. But usually, you should not use your points for missiles and torpedoes.

Cannons can only be mounted on B-wings. But B-wings already have 3 attack dice, and if you make it too dangerous your opponent will quicky destroy it and your cannon is lost. I don’t generally recommend.

Turrets are more or less mandatory on Y-wings.

Upgrades that promote bad stuff like getting stress or flying on your own should be use with care. It can backfire and you can make bad decisions just to make use of an ability.

Combos with other ships like Wingman also makes it harder to fly: perhaps you are tempted to make a non-optimal move just to be able to use your skill. Biggs can be very good, but not if your opponent just kills him round 3 (or he is on his own).

There are better and worse abilities and upgrades, but I suggest:
1st consider to add another ship (or a more powerful ship)
2nd consider to add upgrades that always works (like Shield Upgrade)
3rd don’t add too many upgrades to any single ship

Focus on flying your squad right rather than building the perfect squad.

Note that the 15p A-wing is superior to a 12p Z95 + any 3p upgrade. The same way the T70 X-wing cost 3p more than the T65-xwing (for those 3p you get built in Shield Upgrade (4p) + Engine Upgrade (4p) + better maneuver dial and a tech upgrade slot).

Availability and Proxies
Compared to collectible card games like Magic The Gathering, X-wing Miniatures is very nice because everything is available. You don’t need to find used versions of old cards online for high prices just because you where not in the game a few years ago. Also, you know exactly what every expansion contains, so there is no luck or bad luck with booster packs.

Nevertheless, it is a quite expensive game. For casual play with friends I think proxying make sense. When it comes to upgrade cards, just print them! You don’t draw them from a deck so they dont have to look perfect. For example, C-3PO is a good Millenium Falcon crew, but you might not want to buy the Tantive IV expansion to get one card. If your friends are fine with it, go ahead.