NECA/WizKids will release Star Trek: Attack Wing Wave 20 in November, and StarTrek.com has the exclusive First Look at the ships in the upcoming expansion packs, concluding with the Scorpion 4 Attack Squadron.Since their introduction as a resource, Attack Squadrons have been a powerful tool. Loved by some and feared by all, the Attack Squadron only became a true threat after they were released as retail packs. While there are limitations on Attack Squadrons (they can only attack at range 1-2 and each squadron requires at least one other ship with a hull value of 4 or greater), let’s take a look at why Attack Squadrons are so deadly. Instead of having stats printed on its Ship Card, an Attack Squadron has a number of Attack Squadron Tokens stacked on them. These tokens have the ship’s stats listed on them (Primary Weapon, Agility, Hull, and Shield values, and a Captain Skill Number). When an Attack Squadron sustains damage to its Hull, it does not receive Damage Cards as normal. Instead, one Token is destroyed (i.e. removed from the top of the stack). Tokens removed in this way are removed from the game and may not be replaced or repaired. Once the last Token is removed from the stack, the Attack Squadron is destroyed. It is this ability to take only one damage per attack, for a low SP cost, that has made the Attack Squadrons so popular. Now the Romulans prepare to join the battle with the new Scorpion Class Attack Squadron. Scorpion 4 uses five Attack Squadron Tokens. It starts with a 6 Captain Skill, 4 Primary Weapon value, 0 Agility, 1 Hull and 1 Shield. Just like all the other Attack Squadrons, as tokens are destroyed, the Attack Value and Captain Skill decreases as Agility increases. Scorpion 4 has three Squadron Upgrade slots and two actions on its Action Bar, Evade and Target Lock. As a special ability whenever Scorpion 4 attacks following a Come About Maneuver, you may re-roll any number of blank attack dice. The first Squadron Upgrade is Cloaked Fighters. Romulans love cloak and these fighters are no exception. Cloaked Fighters adds the Cloak Action to your Action Bar. While cloaked, you cannot perform a maneuver with a speed greater than 1. Hidden Formation seeks to build upon the Cloaked Fighters Upgrade by adding Sensor Echo to your Action Bar. Additionally, if cloaked you may discard Hidden Formation to perform an additional Sensor Echo Action as a free action. If you do so, place an Auxiliary Power Token beside your ship.
If cloaking isn’t enough of a defensive boost for you, Cover Fire might be what you’re looking for. Cover Fire allows you to discard this card to roll an additional number of defense dice equal to your current primary weapon value. Combined with the bonus from being cloaked, these fighters will be very hard to hit. Now let’s focus on doing some damage. When the aptly named Scorpion fighters strike, they strike hard. Focused Strike allows you to draw 3 damage cards (instead of 1) when you deal critical damage. You may then choose which of the 3 cards to place beside the damaged ship, discarding the unused damage cards. This upgrade will help ensure that your critical damage does the maximum possible damage to your opponent. Even when the Scorpion is down to its last Squadron Token it is still a threat to be taken seriously. Torpedo Attack is a Squadron Upgrade that finally brings torpedoes to Attack Squadrons. Like regular torpedoes, you must spend your Target Lock to attack and they may be fired from your front or rear firing arc. Torpedo Attack also utilizes the Time Token Mechanic that allows this weapon to re-enable after all the Time Tokens are removed from the upgrade card. No ship may be equipped with more than one Torpedo Attack Upgrade.
So with all this power at their fingertips, what do Attack Squadrons fear? Answer: Cloaked Mines. Scorpion 4 has this problem solved with the help of the Reconnaissance Squadron Upgrade. Reconnaissance is an action that allows you to place a Scan Token and an Auxiliary Power Token beside your ship. Adding the Scan Action to your choice of possible actions will help greatly when trying to hit a cloaked ship or when you run into cloaked mines. Thrusters gives you a little bit of extra maneuvering ability by allowing you to add 1 to your maneuver speed if you are not cloaked and just revealed a green maneuver. Finally, Support Ship increases the survivability of the Attack Squadron by allowing you to discard this card instead of your last Attack Squadron Token.
Even though there are several new upgrades that focus on dealing damage to Attack Squadrons, due to the cheap nature of Attack Squadrons compared to the damage they can deal, you can expect to see Attack Squadrons quite often in the future. With the addition of the Scorpion Fighters, the Romulans are adding a new dimension of play to the already highly effective Attack Squadrons.