The Space Bone-Arm crew is here with a Hot or Not: TIE Bomber/YT-2400 Edition article! Just like our recent Separatist Alliance article, we’re super late on this one! We rated all of these guys immediately during release…and then I totally forgot that I had content ready for an article. At this point, we all know which of the two expansion packs has made the biggest difference in the meta. However, I still want to share what the Bone-Arm crew thought about these ships upon release!
The YT-2400 arrived for two factions; the Rebel Alliance faction and the Scum and Villainy faction. While the former didn’t need any help retaining its top tier meta status, the latter was hoping for a bit of bump. Unfortunately, we all know by now that this ship was a bit of a dud and hasn’t seem play in either faction. The release was also semi-controversial in several ways. AMG decided to simply redesign the two Extended pilots, Dash Rendar and Leebo, rather than add additional content. In addition, Scum only received those two pilots in the form of Standard Loadout cards. While I viewed the addition of Scum SLs as an added “bonus”, many took it as a slight against the faction. Regardless, I think it’s a super cool model and I’m hopeful that it gains meta relevance in the future!
Unlike the YT-2400 pack, the TIE Bomber pack was an immediate meta hit. The new Standard Loadouts have taken over some local metas as the new “go to” TIE Bomber pilots over several of custom “Barrage Rocket” Bombers. In my opinion, the immediate hit of these pilots (specifically the three point ones) has helped propel Empire back towards the top of the meta. The release of the new Bomber SLs also coincided with the rise of Rear Admiral Chiraneau lists, possibly due to their added power and ability to control large swaths of the board with their bombs.
Now for a brief recap about the format; I polled the Space Bone-Arm crew and asked them to judge a selection of pilots in a segment titled “Hot () or Not ()”, where we judge pilot (not people!) strength. Members of the Bone-Arm crew were presented with a single pilot and their respective changes, asked to declare “Hot” or “Not”, and then given an opportunity to provide a short explanation for their vote.
If you’re interested in just a few of our opinions, feel free to scroll down or use the Table of Contents to find the pilots you care the most about! If you like what you read here, then feel free to check out our previous articles. I hope it’s a fun read!
Let’s get into it!
Table of Contents
Dash Rendar: YT-2400 (Rebel)
New: 7 point and 20 loadout
(Talent, Missile, Crew, Illicit, Illicit, Modification, Title)
Steve: Not! Han does what Dash does, but better. Even worse that they’re the same cost.
Ted: Not! It is cool that he’s back, but competing with Han and having no Gunner Slot likely leaves him benched.
Sean: Hot! He’s returned. The end is near.
Jon: Hot! I’ve flown him once already. With some skillful flying, and good upgrades, he can be valuable.
Kevin: Not! I think he’s neat, but neat isn’t hot. Fly Han for now (or Poe Falcon if you want to do cool obstacle stuff).
Final Verdict: Not ! Dash looks cool, but seven points is very crowded in Rebels at the moment. Not only does he have to compete with Han (who is likely still better even with his Feb loadout nerf), but he’s going up against all the Rebel YT-1300s. AMG really should just ban Bistan Gunner and give Dash his Gunner slot.
Leebo: YT-2400 (Rebel)
New: 6 points and 16 loadout
(Talent, Missile, Illicit, Illicit, Modification, Title)
Steve: Hot! Could be good at six points? Not sure how a six pointer fits into the current Rebel list building.
Ted: Not! That ability is Luke-lite and seems like a decent deal at six. Initiative and other Rebel tools probably keep him from being Meta changing. Still, this robot is fun.
Sean: Hot! His price almost makes Dash a not.
Jon: Hot! I haven’t seen him in action, but he seems good.
Kevin: Hot! For six points? He’s hot. Nice alternative to Chopper VCX that doesn’t just want to joust. That said, he probably won’t see much play since most people will just find the extra point for a double-tapping YT-1300.
Final Verdict: Hot ! Leebo feels like a much more listbuilding friendly option than Dash. People have been making six point Chopper VCX work, so I don’t see why Leebo can’t also find a place in lists. His kit feels best if skirting the edges in a defensive manner (with Notorious to avoid being focused), which unfortunately means that he’s not doing a ton of damage with that single calculate token.
Rebel Dash Rendar: YT-2400 (Standardized)
New: 7 points.
Steve: Not! Again, outclassed by Han in the current points structure.
Ted: Not! I still don’t see him being taken over Han with these upgrades.
Sean: Not! I’d have to see how all his stuff works in game, but custom Dash seems stronger.
Jon: Not! I like the loadout of custom Dash better and the “you can shoot when on rocks” is super nice if you screw up flying.
Kevin: Not! He doesn’t look bad, but he can’t be hot with Bistan YT-1300s existing at the same price point. The abilities also seem really hit or miss. Odd card that I’m not sure I’d take over custom anyways.
Verdict: Not ! This Dash feels odd. His main ability and “Mercenary” seems to indicate that he should stick close to friends…but the chassis downside really means that you should be skirting the outside of the battle. Leebo crew and the Seeker Missiles seem cool, but this feels half baked. I’m probably taking custom Dash over this (and a custom YT-1300 over that).
Rebel Leebo: YT-2400 (Standardized)
New: 6 points.
Steve: Hot! Double calculate tokens and free locks feels pretty good. Ignore him at your own risk.
Ted: Not! I would have preferred to have seen the normal Leebo ability on the SL card with the doube calculate being an upgrade, but having a way to generate locks is kinda nice. Still, why take Leebo over other things in Rebels at the moment.
Sean: Hot! Offers a fun build, but the custom option might be stronger.
Jon: Not! I like the stand alone pilot more as this loadout and ability doesn’t feel exciting. It’s good if you don’t spend a calculate and can line up a missile shot next turn, which gives more arc coverage, but I’d rather have a recurring calculate and be able to add other upgrades.
Kevin: Hot! He’s borderline hot, but I’m giving him the edge. He’s probably worse than custom Leebo, but not by much. Getting a free lock is nice and the price feels competitive. He might actually hit hard, which is my issue with custom Leebo.
Verdict: Hot ! This SL Leebo feels much more interesting than SL Dash. His new ability seems useful and meshes nicely with “Efficient Processing” and “Seeker Missiles” are really cool. This could compete with custom Leebo if you’re look for something to slide into a six point slot.
Scum Dash Rendar: YT-2400 (Standardized)
New: 7 points.
Steve: Hot! Like him more in Scum, as the faction has no Han equivalent. It’s still tbd if this helps the faction as I feel like they need more in the 3-4 point range rather than another 6-7 point pilot.
Ted: Hot! Seven points is a real bummer and not a price-point that Scum was lacking. Nonetheless, the flight path is different than the current seven point Scum ship, so I think its Hot. Sadly Dash isn’t something I expect to pull Scum significantly into relevance. I guess the era of steeply discounted SL releases is over?
Sean: Hot! Interestingly enough, I think Scum SL Dash is hot despite Rebel SL Dash being not. Granted, he doesn’t have a custom option, but Scum could use a consistent double turret arc.
Jon: Hot! Just like Rebel Dash, I’m underwhelmed by the loadout and abilities but SCUM DASH!
Kevin: Hot! It feels weird to say that the Rebel version isnt hot, but that this is. However, Scum really needs a large base turret that has a real gun (not you Scum YT-1300, go get reworked).
Verdict: Hot ! A unanimous hot despite the identical Rebel version being a unanimous not! Does SL Dash feel like a piece that would suddenly fix the faction? Nope. Does it feel like something that could see play if the faction gets some other buffs? Definitely.
Scum Leebo: YT-2400 (Standardized)
New: 6 points.
Steve: Hot! Also probably good, but I feel like Scum doesn’t have the cost efficient pieces to support/screen him with.
Ted: Hot! The six point cost certainly helps, especially with that different flight pattern compared to Firesprays and the majority of other Scum ships. Still, Sensor Blackout on an i3 feels rough. I’ll take Leebo for fun, and I like the ship, so I’ll say hot for what else Scum is has currently.
Sean: Hot! Even more hot than Scum Dash. Scum desperately needed a six point 3-dice double turret arc.
Jon: Hot! I’d rather have a customizable Leebo, but I get to fly him in Scum so I guess its ok. Synergy in abilities at least helps you possibly become double modded.
Kevin: Hot! Could this be the juice that Scum needs? Doubtful, but a solid large base ship at six for Scum feels nice. Would I have liked a custom version for the faction? Of course! But this will do for now.
Verdict: Hot ! I think the crew agrees that while we would prefer to have seen Scum get a customizable Leebo, this SL card is interesting and playable. Unfortunately, as Steve brings up, the rest of the faction around Leebo is in a rough state, which will probably prevent him from seeing much play at all.
Major Rhymer: TIE/sa Bomber (Standardized)
New: 4 points.
Steve: Not! An i4 one-trick for four points is bad. It has the tool to absolutely hunt i3s, but that doesn’t make him meta relevant. (Unless Leebo takes over)
Ted: Not! APT on an i4 will be kinda tough to pull off. There is better value in the factions three cost ships.
Sean: Hot! Although the three point Rhymer may be a better deal, this one seems like a fun ten dice then die ship.
Jon: Not! Seems like a good pilot to try out as a frontrunner of the bombers, but four points seems a bit too much for this.
Kevin: Not! No thank you, play custom Rhymer instead for 3.
Verdict: Not ! While Rhymer has a semi-interesting kit, the crew agrees that he’s not worth spending four points on. That said, I could see him easily coming down to three if AMG decides that the next pilot is too good for his current cost.
Tomax Bren: TIE/sa Bomber (Standardized)
New: 3 points.
Steve: Hot! Solid option that can be competitive with the cost efficient customizable Tomax. It will probably depend on the list as you’d usually prefer the Plasma Torpedo to be your first shot
Ted: Hot! This feels like the discounted SL I was talking about lacking in the YT-2400 pack. I compare Tomax to Leema in Scum and just scratch my head. This is just blatantly better with more tools, how is this fair?
Sean: Hot! He’s the only TIE Bomber besides Jonus that can get self double-modded attacks in a single turn.
Jon: Hot! An i5 with a reposition into focus+red lock is SO good. Those Plasmas are definitely going to be used.
Kevin: Hot! Plasmax looks pretty hot. Probably worse than custom if you’re taking multiple Bombers, but as a solo i5 three point piece (or paired with one bomber)? He’s hot.
Verdict: Hot ! Super hot! Tomax has a great self-contained kit that can wreck havoc on the initial engage and then follow it up with Ion Bomb control. He’s quickly become a staple in the faction.
“Deathfire”: TIE/sa Bomber (Standardized)
New: 3 points.
Steve: Hot! This guy is awesome and will give Fang Fighters nightmares.
Ted: Hot! Really tough to predict with Swift Approach and carrying “genius” with trajectory simulator. I mean is there a reason certain factions are getting these buffs?
Sean: Hot! He will probably be the bane of everyone’s existence.
Jon: Hot! Three points for zone control. You don’t know where that bomb is going at all.
Kevin: Hot! He’s not here for damage. He’s here to be a chaos three point piece. I like this.
Verdict: Hot ! Another hot TIE Bomber with a solid kit. While the initial aggressive bomb launch can be fairly predictable on setup, its still hard to avoid. Plus he has Conner Nets for later and a slick way to reposition when in the scrum. While Tomax SL still feels like the single Bomber to take if thinking about a solo piece, he has stiff competition with “Deathfire”.
Captain Jonus: TIE/sa Bomber (Standardized)
New: 5 points.
Steve: Not! Cool abilities for sure…but five points??
Ted: Not! I guess this is where people point me to when I complain about discounted SL ships. But it doesn’t mean efficient ships don’t exist when some are just over priced.
Sean: Not! It’s hard to recommend him for 5 points when there are so many good bombers for less. Top Cover would be completely broken if he had mines, but since bombs won’t explode until the next turn, everyone can just plan around them.
Jon: Not! While those abilities look super good, five points feels expensive since the customizable version lets you re-roll other ships ordinance shots too.
Kevin: Not! Thanks AMG. No one is going to play this at five points. This feels more like a four point ship given that the bombs won’t exploded until the next Systems Phase anyways.
Verdict: Not ! Unanimous not from the crew. As mentioned above, he has cool abilities that just don’t quite seem to combine into a five cost ship. I could see him getting adjusted back down to four points at some point. Definitely better than a three point Barrage Rocket Bomber, but not two points better.
Hot or Not: TIE/sa Bomber and YT-2400 Expansions
Well I really dropped the ball on releasing this one in a timely manner! Still, our judgements are fun to reflect on after these pilots have had time to settle into the meta!
Our mixed reactions to the YT-2400 expansion seems have to held up. Dash sees almost no play in either faction while custom Leebo has been a handful of minor showings at the Store Championship level. While several of us still believe that the Scum SLs have a place, we have to think that the factions lack of strong three and four point ships is keeping any new release from propelling the faction into relevance. Hopefully we see some changes in the future that get this ship on the table! It’s such a fun model and I do think that AMG did an interesting job to rework it in a manner that allows it to be priced more competitively. Sensor Blindspot is rough, but the Outrider was previously a complete mess. It was either completely busted due to it being priced too low or, as it was prior to the rework, priced completely out of the game. This new version feels far more promising with some minor points tweaks.
While the YT-2400 pack was a complete dud, the TIE/sa Bomber pack has been a hit! The Tomax and “Deathfire” SL cards have found a place in top level Empire lists and serve as a competitive choice compared to the custom three point Barrage Rocket Bombers. In addition to being good enough to fit into competitive lists, these two pilots are just a ton of fun to play on the table! I personally brought both of them to my last two Store Championships and was able to earn a Worlds Invite using them! My only hope is that AMG keeps this creativity up and releases similarly fun and good Standard Loadout pilots for factions that have been yearning for new content.
I hope you enjoyed this version of “Hot or Not” for the YT-2400 and TIE/sa Bomber Expansion Packs! We will be back next with a look at the new Battle of Endor pilots!
I’m certain that many of you (including other Space Bone-Arm crew members) disagree with any of our “Hot” or “Not” designations! If so, leave a comment below! If you enjoyed this article, please check out our Rebel Alliance, Galactic Empire, Scum and Villainy, First Order, Resistance, Republic, and Separatist Alliance articles!
Posted on: Feb 8th, 2024
Written by: Kevin L.