Thursday, December 10, 2020

Squadrons Encyclopedia II: An Introduction (READ ME FIRST IF NEW!)

Get comfy, we're about to dive deep
The smart way of writing an introduction is, of course, waiting until the end to do it.  I, of course, have never claimed to be that smart.  So, because this CLEARLY needed it, I'm writing an introduction to the whole Squadrons Encyclopedia. 
The Squadrons Encyclopedia started out as my purpose behind the blog.  We had new people coming in every so often to play, and I was usually the one advising people on HOW to run squadrons.  I'd write giant emails to our group of players, usually meant for one or two people we had just added to the chain.  Two weeks later, I'd rewrite the email for more new people.  I didn't mind doing it, I LIKED talking squadrons.  If you go back and look at our posting history, MANY of my original articles were the squadron analysis ones and how to use them.  I've improved in writing, somewhat (i think!), but at the end of the day I got into this game for squadrons, and I LIKE squadrons.  I've run squadronless, but it doesn't feel as Star Wars to me.

I’ve been running squadrons since Wave I, probably when you shouldn’t have been running them to begin with (Back in my day, Intel wasn't a thing! And you had to send your A-wings 15 miles up the road to engage the enemy ship, dagnabit!).  I killed several ships at the Massing at Sullust with them (this may have been related to the fact that no one else at our local tournament BROUGHT fighters besides Eric, haha (sub-thought: again, we were the meta at our local store.  I brought fighters, so Eric brought fighters.  Thus, 100% of our games had fighters, so fighters were CLEARLY needed!)), and I've tried a bunch of different combinations and thoughts and potentials and everything.  In fact, I still do think about squads all the time.

The original Squadrons Encyclopedia was a result of that.  My own experiences running these squadrons, trying to get use out of them, how to push your OWN A-wings 10 miles uphill.  However, the game is a living game, and everything is in motion.  My earlier suggestions of running Mauler, 12 TIE Bombers, and one Jumpmaster are.... not as helpful as they once were.  Some of the lessons may hold up, of course, like how and who to attack, and I've seen people make similar squad balls work, but for a general reference site we're trying to be... that's not a helpful start for you all.

So, I'm revamping the Squadrons Encyclopedia.  New squads, new squad groups, maybe new advice? We'll see what happens, but welcome to the Second Edition.

New Encyclopedia who dis?

A Description of What Follows
So, in order to make this a proper introduction, let me throw out a description of what follows.  All of the articles are linked from the Squadrons page, conveniently found in the link on any use of the word Squadrons in this sentence. The individual squadrons and suggested starter squadron groups have their own breakdowns on that page, and that's the best place to go find information about them all there.  If you have questions about how to use an individual squadron or what potential ways you can best apply it in a game, click those links.  There's also a link on that page to Eric's article about the individual squadron keywords and what they all mean there.

The Squadron Encyclopedia articles themselves, however, start with a definition of terms (Chapter 1), with both descriptions of what the different squadrons do and the three different sized squadron groups.  We then go into further detail (Chapters 2, 3, and 4) of those basic squadron groups and what they're trying to accomplish in the game.  How to build sample groups of that size and how to get the best uses out of them for you and your list.  These chapters are about how to deal with other squadron groups, so we then move on to attacking enemy ships with your squadrons (Chapter 5).  We move from there to one last article, originally written 12/3/2019, on how to fight against an opponent who went full on into squadrons (Chapter 6).  There's some tips on how to run squadronless in there as well, but much of THAT old article was repetition from earlier articles.

For any extremely new people joining us from the Clone Wars era of the game, these descriptions will apply for you and the squadron groups you take, though they may be applied more towards 4-5-6 era Star Wars.  Most aces/squadrons link to their corresponding pages, so if you have questions with why I suggest doing something, either click on the link or ask me.  I don't plan on updating individual examples much with Clone Wars content, just because the examples I provide are usually more "vague" and trying to illustrate a point.  I could do those examples as easily with different versions of the same squads, but look more at the points I'm trying to make as opposed to the squadron choices, much of the time.  If there's any specific examples or questions you have, please let me know.

There's a lot of ground to cover in all that, and I understand that entire last paragraph was kind of intense.  Take your time, and I'm making changes to those articles relatively often as they become needed.  I'm going to do my best to ensure that the articles stay updated.  And whenever THOSE articles become outdated, I'll break out the inevitable third edition of the Squadrons Encyclopedia.

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