Preview the Alpha-class Star Wing Expansion Pack for X-Wing™
Important Release Update!
X-Wing Wave XII (consisting of the Alpha-class Star Wing, the M12-L Kimogila Fighter, and the Phantom II) and Wave XIII (consisting of the Resistance Bomber and the TIE silencer) were originally announced as separate waves. Fortunately, we have been able to move our release dates to release all five ships simultaneously! You can pre-order all five ships by clicking on the products shown to the right.
Having originally appeared in the Star Wars: X-Wing computer game by LucasArts, the Star Wing quickly became a fan favorite thanks to its impressive array of lasers, ion cannons, missiles, and torpedoes. These made it a true threat to Rebels everywhere, and the Star Wing was one of the few Imperial starfighters to boast its own hyperdrive and deflector shields.
Now the ship enters X-Wing at a time when the Empire faces not only the Rebellion's insurgency, but the additional challenges presented by the galaxy's Scum and Villainy. It's harder than ever to anticipate the dangers your squadrons might face. Your rivals might fly aggressively or defensively. They might fly in tight formations or seek to pull your ships in different directions. You must be versatile in order to be victorious.
And in this age of fast-paced, squadron-based dogfights, we face one critical question: what does the Star Wing—this highly anticipated Imperial starfighter—bring to X-Wing?
A New Style of Imperial Fighter
In X-Wing, the greatest measure of a ship is the way it flies. This starts with the combination of its maneuver dial and action bar, and in the case of the Star Wing, these lead to some combinations that are quite unique—at least among Imperial starfighters.
First you have the maneuver dial. Immediately, the Star Wing's maneuver dial separates it from the Empire's other fighters. The Star Wing lacks the speed "1" turn maneuver shared by so many of the Empire's other fighters, and it has no Koiogran-turn, Segnor's Loop, or Tallon Roll whatsoever. In fact, the Star Wing's dial looks more like that of the VT-49 Decimator than any fighter's dial.
The Star Wing's dial also bears a striking similarity to that of the Rebellion's K-wing. This fact is no coincidence and can go a long way toward informing our understanding of the ship's identity in the heat of battle.
This is because the second defining aspect of the Star Wing's maneuverability is its SLAM action .
Like the K-wing, the Star Wing initially appears somewhat limited in its maneuvers. It lacks the ability to adjust its facing by more than ninety degrees on a single maneuver. It doesn't go terribly fast; although, the Star Wing does boast a red speed "4" straight maneuver that the K-wing doesn't have—along with a pair of speed "3" turns that also make it slightly more maneuverable than the K-wing.
However, as Kevin Leintz pointed out in his X-Wing 101 article, "Bombs Away," the SLAM action makes these ships far more maneuverable than they initially appear, and they can cover more distance in a single round than even an A-wing or TIE interceptor.
The trade-off for all the maneuverability these ships gain through the SLAM action is that it disables their weapons for a round. After your Star Wing performs the SLAM action, it takes a weapons disabled token and cannot fire… except that the expansion's two Title upgrades each introduce a specific means by which you can break this rule.
Loaded for Battle
More than any other Imperial fighter, the Alpha-class Star Wing is all about its secondary weapons.
Not only is the Star Wing able to fire and reload both missiles and torpedoes, but its Title upgrades—the XG-1 Assault Configuration and OS-1 Arsenal Loadout —both allow the ship to equip additional upgrades and fire select secondary weapons even while it has a weapons disabled token.
Here, then, we have one way that the Alpha-class Star Wing stands apart from every other ship currently in X-Wing. Under the right circumstances, you can SLAM around the battlefield and still fire your missiles, torpedoes, or cannons.
With the Advanced SLAM modification, you could even maneuver your Star Wing, SLAM into a new position, and focus, reload, or acquire a target lock before performing an attack.
Because the Star Wing needs one of these Title upgrades to attack even while its weapons are disabled, and because these Title upgrades work with different sets of weapons, we're likely to see Star Wings follow these differing paths toward significantly different roles in your Imperial squadrons.
While your Star Wing in the XG-1 Assault Configuration has a weapons disabled token, its Title permits only the use of cannons with a squad cost of "2" or lower. These include the Flechette Cannon, Tractor Beam , and the new Jamming Beam .
Each of these cannons suggests its own use, and the role of any Star Wing equipped with one of these cannons is likely to be pushed in that direction—using stress tokens to control enemy flight patterns, breaking up enemy formations at close range, threatening to force enemy ships onto rocks, or denying enemies the tokens they need to maximize their odds in combat.
Notably, these aren't the only cannons your XG-1 Assault Configuration Star Wing can equip or fire. It can still load a Heavy Laser Cannon , if you wish, or a Mangler Cannon , but it cannot fire these larger cannons while its weapons are disabled. As a result, you might see a good number of XG-1 Assault Configuration Star Wings equipped with the new Linked Battery upgrade, which occupies the cannon slot and allows you to reroll one of your attack dice.
On the other hand, Star Wings with the OS-1 Arsenal Loadout Title can fire missiles and torpedoes against foes they have target locked even while they have weapons disabled tokens.
This means they can fire ordnance they've just reloaded if they can also get target locks from Colonel Jendon or your Systems Officer . It also opens the door to round one missile barrages executed by Star Wings that fly speed "3" forward, SLAM another speed "3" maneuver toward their foes, and use Advanced SLAM to acquire target locks.
Naturally, your opening round missile or torpedo bombardments are likely to be more effective at higher pilot skill values, meaning you'll likely want to think about piloting your ships with either Major Vynder or Lieutenant Karsabi .
Not only do both of these pilots come with higher pilot skill values, but they both come with unique pilot abilities that key off their weapons disabled tokens.
Whenever he receives a weapons disabled token, if he's not already stressed, Lieutenant Karsabi can receive a stress token to clear his weapons disabled token. This makes him an excellent pilot for any Star Wing you intend to arm with a payload of missiles and torpedoes; he can fire, reload, and fire, never missing a beat—so long as your squad grants him an elite pilot talent like Deadeye and the support of another character, like General Hux , who can help him gain the tokens he needs to fire after spending his action to reload.
Where Lieutenant Karsabi aims to shed his weapons disabled tokens, Major Vynder embraces them. So long as the Major has a weapons disabled token, she gets to roll an extra defense die. Accordingly, the Major might make gratuitous use of her ship's SLAM action, darting about the board with her Advanced SLAM, her Veteran Instincts , and an OS-1 Arsenal Loadout full of Unguided Rockets to find the best possible shot round after round—up to as many as eight ship lengths away from his original position.
Even without one of these Star Wing aces, however, you and your Star Wings stand a good chance of effecting some indiscriminate destruction anytime you can SLAM into position to acquire a target lock with your Advance SLAM and OS-1 Arsenal Loadout. Thanks to the Saturation Salvo upgrade, your Star Wings don't even need to hit their targets to punch holes in an enemy formation, they just need to keep firing ordnance. And that's one trick at which the Star Wing has no peer.
Never Disarmed. Never Disabled.
Whether you use it to unleash a constant barrage of missiles and torpedoes, or you keep its cannons firing SLAM after SLAM after SLAM, the Alpha-class Star Wing is truly a new sort of Imperial fighter.
It's not designed for swarm tactics like the TIE fighter, nor does it leverage its technological advances to establish space superiority like the TIE defender or TIE phantom. It is, instead, all about its secondary weapons, and its two Title upgrades give you two wholly different ways to pursue their use.
How will you outfit your Star Wing? Will you fly it as a flanker? Will you equip it with ordnance to break up enemy formations? How will your fighter help the Empire tighten its grip on the galaxy?