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X-Wing Tactica: Bossk – The Death Machine!

5 Minute Read
Feb 18 2016
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bossk-horz

Howdy ace pilots! Today I’d like to discuss an underappreciated Wave 7 ship, the YV-666 and its (arguably) most dangerous pilot: Bossk.

With the overwhelming popularity of the TLT and its manifold uses on Y-Wings, K-wings, HWK ships and the like, sometimes it feels like the YV-666 ‘space whale’ (or the ‘flying dumpster’, I’ve heard it called) goes unnoticed and underutilized, especially in the competitive X-wing tournament scene. I think it’s time to rectify that oversight, especially with Wave 8 on the horizon.

Now, common wisdom will tell you that, with the new scoring rules for large ships in effect for X-wing tournaments, flying a large ship with such low maneuverability is a mistake. Can’t four TLT Y-wings chip away at it and destroy it by the end of turn 2? Shouldn’t you be taking Autothruster equipped- arc dodgers? The answer is yes, if you’re not utilizing the YV-666 correctly. How does such a slow, bulky garbage scow deal with the TLT phenomenon, or even the classic Tie Swarm and its deadly formation flying? I’ll tell you in two words:

Overwhelming firepower!

bossk card

How to Build a Death Machine

Many players will advise you to build Bossk on the cheap, and they’re not necessarily wrong. A 1-point Calculation EPT goes a long way to taking advantage of Bossk’s inborn pilot ability, helping turn those crits into an extra point of damage. Bossk and Calculation only runs you 36 points, leaving you some room for a goodly number of other ships in your 100 point list. Veteran Instincts is another handy 1-point EPT. You could also pair him with a 4-point manger cannon to take again guarantee a critical hit every time. However, with the advent of TLT, I’d advise you to take another approach. Check this out:

Equip Bossk with a heavy laser cannon. Now, this would necessarily be anti-synergistic, as the HLC turns all crits into hits. That’s why you pair old Bossk with a Mercenary Copilot. The merc copilot lets you turn one of those hits into a critical hit after the HLC does its thing; now you can use Bossk’s pilot ability to throw out a hypothetical five damage a turn! Horrifying. I like to pair it with Predator, which is especially deadly against those low pilot skill Thug/gold squadron y-wings, or your typical academy pilot TIE fighter. Throw in an Outlaw Tech so you can slow roll towards your enemy with your red 0 full stop maneuver whilst still picking up a focus token, essentially making the YV-666 a semi-stationary gun platform, and now you’re playing with power (and keeping arc dodgers from getting behind you). Add an engine upgrade to taste – who doesn’t love an engine upgrade on a large-based ship? It’s ridiculously good. Use it to keep Bossk in range band 1 of any TLT’s you might encounter. Remember, you’re still throwing out 4 dice at range band one with his 180 degree primary weapon firing arc!

If you’re insanely daring (or just insane) put Greedo on that bad boy for your last crew slot. Now that’s five damage on a single ship with a crit to add insult to injury.

I like to pair this Bossk build with a tricked out Kavil: For Kavil’s EPT I’d take Adrenaline Rush or Veteran Instincts, (although Cool Hand is useful) and a R4 Agromech+ Blaster Turret, maybe an engine upgrade too.

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With just these two ships you can now easily dish out a cool nine damage a turn onto a single target, especially if they’re lacking in the evade dice department: that’s a Y-wing a turn folks. You can even fit in a Binayre Z-95 if you want. Such a list would look something like this:

List: Bossk is Back – 100 points

  • Bossk (53) YV-666 (35), Predator (3), Heavy Laser Cannon (7), Mercenary Copilot (2), Outlaw Tech (2), Engine Upgrade (4)
  • Kavil (35) Y-Wing (24), Blaster Turret (4), R4 Agromech (2), Adrenaline Rush (1), Engine Upgrade (4)
  • Binayre Pirate (12)

You could also easily equip Bossk with a Mangler Cannon and Opportunist for the same theoretical damage on the cheap (again by turning that Mangler crit into two hits), though this is somewhat more difficult to fly. It requires your target to not have any focus or evade tokens. How does one achieve this you might ask? Well with blockers, of course! Jam up your opponent’s formation or his YT-1300/YT-2400 with a mini-swarm of Z-95’s! I’ve flown this list before, to great success in tournaments. Here you go:

List: Bossk’s Discount Z-95 Emporium

  • Bossk (52) YV-666 (35), Opportunist (4), “Mangler” Cannon (4), Outlaw Tech (2), Hound’s Tooth (6), Maneuvering Fins (1)
  • Binayre Pirate (12)
  • Binayre Pirate (12)
  • Binayre Pirate (12)
  • Binayre Pirate (12)

Nashtah-pup-1-

People have mixed feelings on the Hound’s Tooth title. Some feel like it is getting a Z-95 on the cheap. Others say it isn’t worth the price tag since that Z-95 isn’t guaranteed to see the table. I’ve included it in this list because A: it is thematically appropriate given the list’s name and B: I’ve seen a solitary Z-95 win games. Also it’s cool to have a ship escape from the exploding wreckage of your space whale!

Whatever your thoughts on Bossk and the variety of builds he can fly, he does have some hard counters, namely, super fast TIE interceptors and A-wings. Consider utilizing Feedback Array to zap pesky interceptors who get behind your expansive front arc. Heck, bring along some Y-wings yourself or a Firespray to mine that vulnerable rear. Though as of yet unreleased, the new 4-Lom, Zuckuss, and Dengar crew cards will also help with taking out high agility ships, and bringing Boba Fett onboard will help you remove the Emperor (or any upgrade, really) from the equation. Just remember: focus fire and fly casual while you collect those bounties!

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~Pilots – to your starfighters!

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