Wave 7 in review.

 

So I know it might seem, I know to me it does, like Wave 7 hasn’t even been out that long but with wave 8 on the
boat it looks like we’re already coming to a close with this wave. Worlds has come and gone and Wave 8 should be
legal by store championship season so now seems like a good time to go ahead and take a look back at it and how
it shaped the meta.

I’m not going to include the Raider or the new core set in this discussion. I know they were released so very
close but this will strictly look at the wave 7 ships and upgrade cards.

Khkyrax Fighter-There were a lot of mixed opinions when this ship was released. There had been some clamoring for
S&V to finally get a natural ace and this ship gave it to them. Unfortunately both the named and generic ships
suffered from the same flaws that the X-Wing did, too many points invested into attack on a ship that can be arc-
dodged too easily and suffers from some predictable maneuverability due to its lack of a native boost or
barrel roll.

Tie Punisher-There was a lot of excitement for this ship, a lot of people thought it would help curve the balance
towards underused munitions. The named pilots seemed to have seen the most play. A pretty common loadout for
Redline was extra munitions, fire control system and cluster missiles giving you 2 attacks of 3 dice with TL’s for
both at range 1-2. Not bad, but you’re paying the same price for that as you are your standard Soontir loadout and
most people found it too easily outmaneuevered by aces, or that the value wasn’t good enough against cheap, generic
ships. As for Deathrain, it saw a lot of play early. Conner net, proton bombs, extra munitions and either
enhanced scopes or advanced sensors seemed to be the most common build. Again not bad, can help you lock down arc
dodgers while giving you something to deal with swarms but again most people found it too difficult to connect on
enough bombs to make it worthwhile.

YV-666-A very intriguing ship from the outset. A lot of people were interested to see how the dual front arc
would play and which of the pilots would standout. I personally feel like the Bossk crew card is an insanely
good value. Tactician and/or gunner were also two very common cards to be loaded out with any pilot. Ultimately
I feel this ship suffered from the same fate as the Tie Punisher in that they were released 1 wave too late. In
Wave 6 each would’ve been great as an ace hunter but with TLT’s and swarms so common now neither ship has any hope
to dodge those shots and simply melts too quickly to that concentrated fire.

K-Wing-The ship most often given tournament play out of the wave. Maybe that will change as the meta shifts again
down the road but this ship was the only one to have any kind of decent showing at Worlds. Miranda was instantly
pegged as a solid ship and has more or less proven to be that. The generics were typically used much in the way
Deathrain was, as bombers, but the triple K list ran by Aaron Bonar at Worlds definitely was a nice late-meta
discovery that had people rethink the ship’s ability overall.

This wave seems to have played out a lot like the one before it. Much like wave 6 (Aggressor) only 1 ship saw some
considerable tournament play. Also like wave 6 (autothrusters) the biggest shift in the meta was caused not by a
ship but by an upgrade card, twin laser turret. I personally found it a little humorous that everyone thought
the fat 360 ships would be killed off by autothrusters, which only cause them to become more popular. Then to
have them eventually killed off by smaller, 360 turret carrying ships, who were in actuality the real winners of
this wave. The 2nd and 3rd most popular upgrade cards were probably Glitterstim and Crackshot. Ultimately the
designer’s efforts to make bombs and munitions competitive fell a bit short but it’s nice to see them giving it a
shot.

All in all, though, you have to say this wave was an overall success for the designers. The diversity in lists at
Worlds greatly exceeded any of the prior years. This was the first year when someone could just bring a list that
was all their own instead of just drinking the meta cool-aid and actually be competitive with it. A lot of cards
remain underused but safe to say the game is still in a very healthy place heading into the next chapter.

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