I get a jolt of excitement each time I manage to go to Dark Sphere (our local plastic crack den in Waterloo) on a Thursday night and see Andrew Pattison, Yavin Open Champion and inventor of the Patti-swarm. I’m actually really lucky that I’m able to see Jesper Hills, UK Nationals Champion; Alex Bert, James Dowdall and Mike Dennis (all of the 186th Squadron Podcast) there on a regular basis. I can only hope some of their skill rubs off on me via osmosis. I’m not sure this has happened yet.
Anyway, with the impending Coruscant Invitational as part of the Star Wars Celebration Weekend, Andrew Pattison invited some of the other Open Champions for friendlies. I shit you not, last night Dark Sphere had the regular members of the 186th Squadron, as well as Pattison, Ryan Flemming (the Hoth Open Champion, America) and Sascha Glitch (the Naboo Open Champion, Denmark).
The public have spoken and the Scum mandatory ship has been announced as the Star Viper. Wow.
I’ve wanted to create a viable and competitive Star Viper list since I started playing but I could never really justify the points.
What I’m most excited about, is that by the end of this weekend, we may well have seen eight Star Viper builds that really kick ass (That’s providing they get played).
Why Guri? I can’t help but feel sorry for Guri, she’s the ace that never was. The dial for the Star Viper isn’t awful (it could be better, but it could certainly be worse – it’s no HWK) and her ability when coupled with both the boost and barrel roll seem to scream ‘arc-dodger’. Still, look at her PS -5?! Really? At 30 points? And then there’s the unique title card at an extra two points. That’s 32 points before any upgrades. It further re-affirms the notion that the Scum faction were really poorly costed when released in Wave 6.
If I had to play a Star Viper, I’d show Guri some love.
Guri’s Goofs (99 points)
What’s the logic? The two Bin-yarr-ee Pirates at PS1, they’re prime blockers and they have Feedback Array to help them out.
The Black Sun Soldiers move in a close second behind the Pirates, being a PS3, with the Thread Tracers giving everybody a target lock. They’re also going to help with the blocking.
What about Guri? With this build, I’ve used Adaptability to lift her PS (or not). Autothrusters and Sensor Jammer here help increase her survivability by reducing the risk of variance. I might be tempted by Advanced Sensors, it’s a point cheaper.
I could put Lone Wolf on Guri, but with four other ships in play, it’s unlikely to work. With that, I could also put on Predator, but I’m actually going to go for Glitterstim as it poses a good psychological threat. There’s space for Crack Shot if I want, but I like having at least one list here with an initiative bid.
Guri’s Gotta Party (100 points)
What’s the logic? Guri and a Party Bus. I can hear the whistles now; the face paint; the mirror ball. Reach for the lasers. Safe as fuck.
Alex Davey has apparently hinted that there will be a Star Viper fix with some sort of Scum Veterans pack. Scum Outlaws? I’m not so sure it hasn’t already been offered to us in the form of Attani Mindlink.
Palob can steal an enemy focus token and then Guri gets one via the AM. The pitfalls are the possibilities of gaining an unwanted stress token, but I think it should be ok here. I’ve gone with the Blaster Turret as a range 1-2 as I couldn’t afford the Ion or TLT. Alternatively, you could drop Attani Mindlink and go for one of these. Really, Palob is there to support and provide tokens.
The Party Bus? This is the traditional build, woth Dengar enabling re-rolls (two if it’s a unique pilot); 4-Lom demanding a re-roll of your opponents defence dice and Zuckuss stopping your opponent spending tokens.
If you prefer, you could take a Trandoshan Slaver with Bossk and Gunner instead. This comes in at 36 points instead of 34 for the Party Bus, so you would have to find two points elsewhere.
What about Guri? I couldn’t afford Sensor Jammer this time in the Systems Slot because of the cost of two Attani Mindlinks. Instead, I have gone for the cheaper Fire Control Systems. I’ve lost the EPT to Attani Mindlink and so have gone with Glitterstim again.
Guri’s Gifts (100 points)
What’s the logic? Both Manaroo and Zuckuss being able to pass tokens around. Win.
I think Zuckuss’ ability at 28 points is incredible. The Tractor Beam can be a lot of fun but really, you’re paying the 1 point for the benefit of an additional barrel roll action. Adding in Fire Control Systems at an additional 2 points seems a no brainer.
This is a really basic Manaroo build and I’ve put her with Dengar to benefit from the re-roll ability whilst also freeing up the EPT slot for the Attani Mindlink. Let’s not forget the fluff either. Does she really need Attani Mindlink? This way, everybody benefits rather than one person; she also gets to keep her own focus token. How else might she be built? This is a tough one as I like the Revenge Bot acting as a deterrent, even though it might be costly at 3 points. I could drop both of these for an Engine Upgrade and then give her Adaptability instead. Well worth considering.
What about Guri? This is the most basic Guri, with only Autothrusters and the Virago title as she benefits from the AM.
Why take this basic Guri? Well, she’s supported so well through the potential of the Attani Mindlink, although there is the risk of stress from the red on the G-1A Starfighter dial. I think she might benefit from at least having FCS, but you can use target locks, relying on focus tokens from the other two ships.
I didn’t have a Nintendo 64 and I didn’t get to play Shadows of the Empire. The N64 had such a stilted release in the UK, I’d pretty much given up on Nintendo at that point. If only it were on the Nintendo store now.
I know of Guri’s history in the EU after having researched it when first getting into X-Wing in January.
I want to read the SOTE novel but I’m too busy re-reading the Thrawn trilogy (it’s still as good as when I was in my early teens) and the awesome Darth Vader comics by Kieron Gillen et al.
I have a second Star Viper, I’ve actually had two extra ones that I bought for the additional Autothrusters. I’m tempted to paint one purple and make a Prince list.
Besides that, I’m tempted to have a go at each of the lists above now that I’ve given them some thought. I’m attracted to the Bug Zappers in Guri’s Goofs but I’m really keen to go with Guri’s Gifts too.
What will we see at Coruscant? It will certainly be interesting. Good luck to all of the players. I know I’ll be thinking of you through the day.
Jesper posted online earlier today explaining that they were unsure that there would be a twitch or YouTube broadcast of the day’s events. They’re hoping to live tweet some of the day from @186Podcast