Man writes article that Dengaroo won’t win Worlds 2016 and Dengaroo flicks him the bird. A quick look at Worlds 2016.
I’ve never really been grabbed so much by a miniatures game enough to watch it live until I started playing X-wing a couple of year or so ago. Here, far, far away in the UK we were spoiled by our players at worlds, notably Scott Reed, relaying the latest over social media. I managed to watch the majority of the live feeds from flight two and all of the rounds on the final day. A big shout out to Gold Squadron and Scum and Villainy podcasts for setting up their own live feed for the last two rounds of Swiss and early rounds of the top 16.
The past few days has been a learning experience, mainly for never to break ones golden rule about leaving 24 hours to proof read and edit out any inappropriate jokes that might offend. The most popular article on our site to date, ‘Why Dengaroo won’t win Worlds 2016,’ now lies around my neck like a lead weight, according to some of the good folk of reddit anyway. The Internet, not being one to read things fully, like the part about why Dengaroo can win Worlds 2016 or why the article was not bashing the skill of the Dengaroo players is quickly forgotten. Using Dengaroo effectively does require skill and I take my hat off and salute you Nand Torfs, World Champion 2016, well flown.
I’m not really a hat person and don’t own a suitable one to eat so I’m going to kill two birds with one stone and make a ‘hat’ cake for our AGM in a couple of weeks, maybe like this. I had one peculiar request from reddit about asking how does it taste , with your foot in your mouth, but I feel that they may have been on the wrong site as that kind of fetish doesn’t float my boat.
Dengaroo is a fun game
Looking at Dengaroo for a moment, seeing as it won and I have to eat my hat, (I’m thinking citrus flavoured sponge layers and butter cream), there were not many Dengaroo lists in total at Worlds although three made the top 16 cut. I wonder if the fear of the potential new black market slicer tool meta drove the numbers down and made some Degaroo players consider their options. As it was the ‘Black Market Slicer Meta,’ (not sure if that should have a hash tag like #HWK Meta), has not sprung up here nor at Worlds. Also as the meta had been developing counters to Dengaroo for a while and there were some interesting takes on developing Dengaroo further as a concept either based around Manaroo or different buffs on Dengar and a different flying partner.
Dengaroo is like a sledge hammer, but most people don’t appreciate that using a sledge hammer has a lot to do with technique rather than just swinging a massive heavy hammer blindly. A case in point was when one of my brothers pitched up to where I was working once and I let him have a go with one. Despite his short stature, (he claims to be 5 foot eleven and a half but my other brother and I clearly have several inches of height on him), he is an ultra fit 3rd Dan black belt in taekwondo and a former English Champion. We had a chuckle as he failed to break things with it.
Son, you are dead to me
So Dengaroo by numbers was not very popular, on flight one only four Dengaroo builds were present. Even Jeff Berling who sired Dengaroo had forsaken the original construction in favour of a Dengar and Bossk build, (Bossgar or Densk?). Berling was playing with Dengar acting as a soft ‘Dengaroo’ with Lone Wolf, K4 security droid and R4-B11 and Bossk with Zuckuss and 4-Lomm for a more aggressive partner, (plus other stuff). The 186th Squadron from the UK took with them Fenteroo and other mindlink variants based around Manaroo doing what she does with either Fenn Rau and Old Teroch or swapping Old Teroch for Palob.
This for me suggested that if Berling was not running Dengaroo, then maybe its number is up.
The Final Reckoning
Scum: Nand Torfs
Dengar, Lone Wolf, Title, Overclocked R4, Zuckuss, Countermeasures and glitterstim
Manaroo, Push the limits, Gonk, R5-P8, Engine Upgrade, seismic Torpedo and feedback array.
Rebel: Kevin Leintz
Corran Horn Push the limit, Fire control Systems, R2-D2 and engine upgrade
Miranda Doni Twin laser turret, advanced slam, sabine wren, extra munitions, homing missiles, Conner net and Ion bombs.
Overall the games streamed both by FFG and the podcasts were great but like with all major sports finals at times the final can fall short of the expected mark in terms of a close entertaining game to watch.
I was torn about who to root for in the final. On one hand having wrote an article about why Dengaroo won’t win Worlds it seems obvious to support Kevin, but Nand is European and I’m European so I should support my fellow continental. But wait, we voted Brexit in the UK and doesn’t’ Brexit mean Brexit? All I could here in my head was my new Prime Minister repeatedly telling me that Brexit means Brexit like I tell my kids to eat their greens. We are leaving the European Union but we are still European right?
Unsure I needed to find a deciding factor as the game was about to start. Drawing on my art college background I observed what both the finalists were wearing. Although Nand had the better T-shirt his shorts really upset me, (a white and purple tartan pattern), and the whole ensemble just didn’t work for me. Kevin’s total garment selection, although slightly unimaginative in olive green shorts and faded navy T shirt, (could have been colour distortion on the feed), did at least work together as a whole. So I opted for Kevin.
Ohhh, the shorts have it.
One of the great things about Dengaroo from the Dengaroo player’s perspective is being able to effect the variance of the opponent’s defence dice with Zuckuss crew. With Corran Horn down a shield and out of position early on and Kevin not opting to put the block on Dengar, Corran got blown away with a direct hit crit after a range one shot, some Zuckussing and the dice turning up blanks.
Zuckuss got a lot of hate on the live feed messaging at this point.
That was effectively game unless Kevin could play a protracted long game against the odds but Miranda just can’t cope on her own when dealing with High PS combined with high or consistent damage output. Even launching a homing missile at Dengar to spike damage probably means going head on with him which won’t help Miranda. I started typing this article out at the point Corran went bye-bye.
The semi-final on the other hand had Nand having to pull it out of the bag when on the back foot against Jack Mooney’s Han Solo and Jake Farell. With Dengar on three hull, only by being able to block Han Solo on an asteroid for two consecutive turns with Manaroo, stopped Dengar biting the bullet. This enabled him to turn around what looked like a forgone conclusion of a Han and Jake win. Like a faithful lap dog Manaroo was around Han’s ankles biting with a feedback array whilst Dengar pot shotted a stressed and shieldless Jake at range three.
“Zuckuss you bastard!” Myself and another few thousand voices called out at once. “If the other rebel player beats the palp aces the odds are I’m making a cake!” And that really won’t mesh well with my dietary reprogramming at the moment. Okay, the second bit was probably just me.
The Dust settles.
The X7 Defenders were out and about in numbers as well as a reasonable showing from the shadow casters. The top 16 cut only had two rebel lists compared to eight scum and six Imperial lists so it wasn’t quite the X7 Defender show. Only one, trusty old Ryad made the semi-final. There seemed to be a reasonable number of rebels about but not quite hitting the highest echelons. I would put this down to the relatively new meta post FAQ. The numbers of ARC-170 seemed a bit thin on the ground, (a measly one), whereas over here in Blighty it has been picking up in popularity and effectiveness.
There was a solitary triple scout list at worlds which beat Paul Heaver in the last round of swiss pairings and made the top 16 with adaptability as the EPT. I caught the middle to end of that match and it was a game of nip and tuck with the scouts expertly flown by Marcel Manzano. See, I said scouts weren’t dead, take that internet.
Triple scout list
Contracted scout: adaptability, Proton torpedoes, Extra munitions, R4 Agro mech, bobba Fett, Guidance chips.
2 x Contracted scout: adaptability, Plasma torpedoes, Extra munitions, R4 Agro mech, intelligence agent, Guidance chips.
Three Dengaroos in the top 16 cut does suggest that in the right hands it is efficient and deadly if flown well. One was dropped in the top 16 round, the other in the top eight. Only one Imperial list did not have a defender and that was an Oincun and Whisper build. I feel that Rebels will make a resurgence in the meta which is at early days of working itself out after the Jumpmaster nerf. If you were going to Worlds a more tried and tested squad would have been sensible and there was not the time frame to overtly look at the rebel box and chance your arm there. The two rebel lists that got into the top four harked back to wave 7 meta. Jack Mooney had been flying his list since January so it certainly pays to fly what you know.
With plenty of foreign players making the trip and hitting the cut it certainly felt more like a World championship than other years. I do wonder though whether it may be better as has been stated on some podcasts, like by Sable Griffin on Scum and Villainy that there should be a more formal qualifying process to the event rather than only national champions and USA regional champions getting first dibs on a ticket. Opening up to all regional champions to have the opportunity to get a ticket or if a regional tops a certain number, the semi-finalists, would add more credibility in getting top players rather than those who are good at data entry.
At the end of the day, I’m not bitter about Dengaroo winning worlds, I just wrote an article to highlight some reasonable logic as to why it might not win. Sometimes the underdog wins and crazy things have happened over the course of this year but some are quite unimaginable. It’s not like by the time you’ll be reading this we will have President Trump sitting in the White house will we according to all the polls?
And pollsters never get it wrong.