I don’t need all the fingers on one hand to count the number of games I played between March 2020 and May 2021. I didn’t think about it all that much either.
But when it rises up, X-Wing is a strong wave that I ride hard. It’s never truly gone, it just needs a good nap from time to time.
Come May this year it woke up, rested and strong. Luckily I like both TTS and IRL game, so I can mix and match, fitting in some pew pew around my life. I can even sneak in the odd game against Rogue Leader, despite being in different cities.
But, I’m barely average. I still can’t fully remember all the obstacle rules (a running joke among my own Blue Squadron friends). So returning to the game was somewhat daunting.
I want to enjoy pew pewing, but there’s a good chance I’ll suck. So what to do?
Turns out a lot of it is about mindset, and on that front there is plenty you can apply.
There are plenty of games to watch, be it live on Twitch or recorded on YouTube. I’ve found these immensely helpful, for understanding certain lists, being aware of the meta, and for seeing dumb things I try not to repeat! It keeps my head in the game, and I enjoy trying to judge ranges and arcs, which had led to various moments of me shouting at the TV. “That’s out of range!” “Why would you boost there?!”
Streams also showed one thing in particular that was quite frankly a game-changer – tracking the points.
If a football match finishes 2-1, you can tell that whilst there was a win, it was a close-run thing. Same goes for understanding how a 4-0 went down.
Thinking about X-Wing in the same manner changes how I look at results. The other day I lost a game 69-62. One more hit on the opponent would have got me enough points to win. In the past, I would have taken that badly. Instead, I thought “hmmm close game that” and took heart from running it close at a time.
I also keep track of the score throughout the game. So I know where I am and what I need to do. Do I need to defend a lead? Go more offensive to push damage through? The score is important, so use that calculator!
Enjoy The Company
X-Wing has become a cool hobby, a money pit, and has given me some great friends. One time we even all binned off our last game to go have a pint instead.
The game is only as good as those you’re playing it with.
That’s an important distinction. Yes, you’re trying to win, but the game needs both of you. Enjoy the people you’re with. Goodness knows many of us have learnt how important seeing other people can be now.
I don’t tend to stick with lists for long, averaging around ten games. I’m on my third list since restarting, and though I’ve picked ships I like, I’ve picked each list for a reason.
Coordinate? Torps? Ace play? There’s been something in each list that I wanted to experience, use, and understand better than before. So even when I lose (which is often!), I feel as though I’m learning. And I’m cool with that.
Take the moves seriously, but not the result
I know I need to concentrate and try to win to enjoy X-Wing. It all goes to shit when I completely chill out. But I now make a huge point of resetting after the game. Checking what I’ve learned, and taking the positives. I’m aware of my win/loss ratio. But I don’t let it own me like I used to. It’s freeing!
Have you recently returned to the world of X-Wing? How are you finding it? What’s your mindset?