Tuesday, February 14, 2017

YT-2400s: Fear the Angry Frisbees!

So I've come to realize that in order to discuss the proper way to Squadron Build and (somewhat) run squadrons, I'd prefer to have all of the squadrons having been discussed.  Eric and I started this to help newer players get some things under control (I wanted to write squadrons, Eric wanted to stop people from hating on the Raider and TIEs, haha), so it makes more sense in my mind to have discussed all the existing squadrons BEFORE I get into how to run them and in what combinations and such.  So my GOAL is to hit one of these every night this week, publish them in the morning, and then write another one that night.  So you get a week of articles! And I get a week to learn Vassal and then take easier to see/understand pictures! Everyone wins!

So let's talk YT-2400s, the second most loved squadron from Wave II.
Shadows of the Empire was a pretty great game.  Especially when you get to fight Wampas on Hoth.
As Eric said yesterday, Rogue lets your squadrons move and attack without having spent a squadron command/token to do so.  That's not to say "You don't need to."  I've had my squadrons jumped by 4 Rogue Firesprays that were commanded by an ISD, and it shocked the heck out of me.  As Eric pointed out, you get less mileage out of doing it, but if you want an alpha strike with them that'll put a serious hurt on the enemy squadrons, commanded Rogues can get the job done and then you don't really ever need to worry about them after that.  It just gets prohibitively worse the more you do it.  Doing it once to get the alpha is great (and a hilarious second turn move, if you have a ship that wouldn't mind pushing squadrons).  Doing it for 3 turns means you should have taken regular fighters for cheaper.

What the YT-2400 does well, though, is function in a slightly different role than an X wing or an A-wing.  The A wing lurks on the fringes and prevents a bomber cloud from moving/picks off squadrons on the edges.  X wings escort friendly squadrons/Jan Ors, and are great in a blob of their own, slowly eating a bomber cloud (either from the inside, if you can keep everything near Jan, or the outside if they're all clumped together) or preventing your bombers from getting attacked as they make their way towards the target.

Do you remember that scene in Rogue One where the X wings attack the Science Base on Eadu and just go in and start womping everything? YT-2400s are kinda like that.
We should communicate with our Flight Commander to see if the attack is still on, but on the other hand, LEEEROOOOY JENNNKINS!
YT-2400s come in, usually unsupported and just crack squadrons over the head.  They're rolling 4 blue dice, which is as good as an X-wing (and the best the Rebellion has to offer, unassisted).  Their 4 speed means that they can get to almost anywhere they need to (try not to let them get jumped, if you can help it...), and with Rogue they can fire and then move (if they cleared out their target).  With 6 health, they have very good odds of surviving most attacks or counter attacks on them (2 TIEs need to roll perfectly to kill them).  And with Rogue and all that, they have very good odds of surviving into the later stages, where they can move and throw black dice at enemy ships.  Individual damage dice HURT, as they make defense tokens nearly useless (Yes, let me redirect this ONE damage.  Such a great use of my defense token....), and with the black dice rolling you have 6/8 sides with that damage.  A 75% chance of rolling a damage is great! (If you really wish they were bombers, I'll hit Lancers in a few days, haha).

I used to run 4 of these as my squadron component when we were in Wave 2, but now I'm not sure I've seen them used as much (too many other options on my part, too much to try, haha).  As Eric pointed out, Rogue squadrons haven't been seen as much* since we got flotillas and squadrons became easier to command.

*I say as much, but that flotilla nerf sure did a number on things.  Because we only have 2 flotillas per side again, it's really nice being able to bring some squadrons with Rogue that don't need you to command them!  I've seen a fair amount of Raddus lists that bring them, just to ensure that Raddus is going to be able to drop his ship in where he wants when he wants.
Star Wars EU Books: Because we needed a fake Han Solo to rescue Leia from a green alien with a topknot who had magic seduction powers.  That's not even the third worst story I've read, either.  LOOKING AT YOU, VECTOR PRIME!
Dash is an upgraded YT-2400, with a built in reroll.  If he's engaging one squadron, it's one rerolled blue dice.  If he's firing on a ship, it's a built in BCC.  If he's engaging 3 squadrons, that's 3 dice rerolled (all at the same time).  It's also a great way to get shot by multiple squadrons at once. I've often had problems diving Dash in to bite off what I think he can chew, and then he does not.  Keep in mind that the reroll happens all at once.  So even if i'm engaged with 3 fighters, I can't reroll one dice 3 times, it's 3 dice ONE time.  Two ships engaged is just one reroll on the black dice from Dash's ability.  The bomber keyword is quite useful at finishing ships off.

How to Use Them
There's two schools of thought with them.

First, you can use them as your entire fighter pack.  I've used them in a pack of 8 with Cracken.  8 of them clean up any enemy squadron presence FAST, and then they go flotilla hunting.  Even if we just roll the average and only hit the flotilla 6 out of 8 times, that's only 2 attacks scattered (and we're at that point again, where you have to use and potentially burn away the Scatter on the flotilla to not die from ONE DAMAGE.  So aggravating to happen to you, so wonderful to see it from the YT-2400 side).  That's 4 left, and HEY LOOKIT THAT! 4 damage is EXACTLY enough to eat a shield and then deal the 3 HP the flotilla has.  Even Bright Hope, just hit it in the rear zone.

The other option is to use them to supplement your commanded squadrons.  Example: Jan Ors and 2 X wings get activated by a Pelta during the turn and move in to hurt some Imperial squadrons.  During the Squadron phase, your YT-2400s can either go in and finish off the engaged squadrons, or go hit something else you need hit.  The next turn, Jan and the X wings can either come in to free your YT2400s up if needed (if you hit something else), letting you move elsewhere to engage things, or they can go lock down a different part of the bubble (if you moved in and helped them kill whatever was engaging them).  Leapfrogging like this (as I mentioned with E-Wings and A-wings in the A wings article) will force the enemy to shift his squadron focus and try to determine what to stop and how.  With 6 health, the YT2400s taking the first attack is fine.  When the X wings move in afterwards, their Escort (and Jan's Brace Tokens) will keep some damage off the YTs.  When the enemy is dead, you've got Rogue YTs (and commanded X wings!) to go chase down and finish off ships that have tried to get away.
See, it's a frog, and I told you to leapfrog your.... ah, forget it.
Jan also has a good synergy with the YT2400s.  By letting them use her brace tokens, enemies have to deal more damage to them in order to kill them.  If they attack Jan, you use your YT-2400s to hit them back and then escape (or move to an unengaged spot).  If they hit you, Jan keeps Bracing hits away.  I've seen success with both of these methods, but it's more that you're bringing along 130ish points of squadrons than anything, and 130 points of hard HITTING squadrons.  You can do 4 (commanded) and 4 (Rogues), 3 and 3 (commanded/Rogues), 5/3, 3/5, whatever works best for you.  Just make sure that every squadron you bring without Rogue is something you can FEASIBLY command each turn to get the best benefit out of them.

In either case, your YTs are the strongest Rogue anti-squadron force in the Rebellion.  Kill THEIR squadrons, then start hitting ships after that.  Gang up on squadrons with them together, and you'll do great.

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