Wednesday, October 26, 2016

X-Wing Musings: Play Smarter Not Harder!

For those of you out there who are currently well and truly bitten by the X-wing bug the competitive scene offers a plethora of interesting strategies and challenges for all players. The introduction of the past two waves (7 and 8) have strategically altered the Meta and shifted players towards a new frontier of list building. Sure there are still the top one or two lists per faction that consistently hit the top tables and make the final cut, but the vast majority of lists in a tourney are a great mish mash of 3-5 ship builds with the occasional swarm or 2 ship thrown in. The dreaded Twin laser turret rightfully smashed the default 2 ship build into an option rather than a necessity and now the introduction of guidance chips has finally allowed use of ordnance to pulverise slower turret ships or agile aces in the right situation. It's times like this when the latest meta is shaping and the new upgrades are directly addressing the issues of past upgrades that players are able to do the something else.

The largest problem with the competitive scene is the obsession with copy pasting of lists. I feel like the largest contributor to a stifled meta-game is the playerbases inability to innovate in the face of a challenge. For this reason I have always been a profound advocate for using the unexpected to counter the expected. Players always have the internal dilemma of sticking with what currently works (the tops lists) or trying to solve the puzzle themselves. Unfortunately as a result certain pilots or upgrades are overused and eventually addressed in a future wave when the answer may or may not have already been out there.

As we move into wave 9 the recent Errata/FAQ that was released has decided to pull back on the reigns of the contracted scout U boat build and as a result the re surged Dead eye was reworded to only be available to small ships. Was this the correct decision for the overall design of the game moving forward? The answer is yet to be seen but we have ultimately seen the results of a meta that simply won't shift despite ongoing releases.

The point of this ramble was to simply put into words my current position on the meta argument that ravages the boards on a daily basis. Currently there are powerful lists at the top end of the game that remain consistent winners of events, however the winners of worlds since the beginning have always been counter play lists that think inside but on the fringe of the box. When the game stagnates FFG will release shiny new things into the wild, but it is our mission as players to constantly look for interactions that have yet to be seen and that rarely see play as they may catch an opponent off guard.

Play smarter not Harder!

No comments:

Post a Comment