We'll start out the squadrons blogging with (my) thoughts on roles. I’ve been running them 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 got into this game to play with them.
I have run a large quantity (~75%) of the heavy squadron fleets at our local game store, and I’ve killed MSU, Motti ISDs, and everything in between. So I have a pretty good idea of what to do with them. My knowledge is mainly for Rebels. I’m sure Imps have squadrons too, but I don’t know how they work as well, so I make no claims about using them well. I’m sure the basic principles translate, but I’ll let Eric talk about them.
Our first topic, in today’s entry, will be squadron roles. As I write this, with the release of Wave V, there are several different roles squadrons occupy. The main 2 divide into Fighters and Bombers, but I’d also consider a new third class of Support (with everything we now have). The Rebellion squads can double up on roles, and do so pretty well, but you pay a premium on points for their abilities. My X-wing is a competent Fighter and Bomber, but it also costs nearly twice as much as a TIE fighter. Y-wings, while not amazing at being fighters, CAN do it, better than a TIE bomber can.
There are several types of fighters and their roles. Squadrons that exist to be fighters tend towards 3-4 anti-squadron die, and have better speed to engage faster. Sometimes you get escort, sometimes you don’t. As Star Wars was a glorified fancy space pants version of WWII, the fighter combat from WWII basically translated into the movies. To sum up many interesting articles and history of fighter combat, you want your Bombers to hit the enemy ships while your Fighters prevent the enemy squadrons (Fighters and Bombers) from doing their job. Fighters get in the way, and prevent you from getting overwhelmed by enemy squadrons.
Bombers have less base dice against squadrons, but better damage against ships. They may not be the fastest (traditional WWII bombers were slowwwww) but when they hit, they HURT (that whole Bomber ability does help with resolving crits, haha). Concentrated fire from these can break ISDs (and is my usual plan FOR killing them, haha!) If you’re lucky, you might even get Grit!
These are the squadrons that exist to support your ability for your main two to do your job. Snipe, Relay, Strategic, and Intel. We'll get to these, and other Rebel and Imperial Hero abilties.
First up! The basic X-wing!