The B-Wing and TIE Defender have landed in Star Wars: Squadrons

So what does the B stand for anyway? Bomber? Best? Blurst? Because I’m looking at the ship right now, and that doesn’t look like any B I’ve ever seen. Semantics aside, the topsy-turvy heavy bomber has finally arrived in a free update to Star Wars: Squadrons alongside the TIE Defender, an Imperial fighter that looks like someone glued an extra pair of wings onto the Interceptor and called it a night.

Hey, even shipbuilders have slow days at the office.

This week’s update is the second of Squadrons’ Holiday Supply Drops, the first adding a brand new map and an arsenal of new weapons. Now, we’ve got some properly strange new ships to attach those experimental explosives to.

I gave the two ships a quick shot the now, so let’s start with the big bad B-Wing. It’s a strange one, a staggeringly tall ship that, through use of a new gyro auxiliary, can rotate the rest of its body around the central cockpit. This changes both the collision zone of your ship and the position of your weapons, and while I’m not sure how this’ll play out in practice, I reckon it’ll make for some wild debris-defying escape sequences.

The TIE Defender, on the other hand, is a tankier, shootier starfighter for the space fascists. It’s one of the rare Imperial ships to sport shields, and its three-pronged guns pack a bigger punch. You do end up losing the screen-tearing speed and manoeuvrability from the base TIE Fighters and Interceptors, mind, but it seems a strong choice for defending capitals in fleet battles. Coulda guessed from the name, really.

The update also adds custom games, which I fiddled with to give the new ships a test drive. There’s a great degree of customisation here, letting you fiddle with damage numbers, ban ships, and adjust minor options to a degree I rarely see outside of Halo custom games. I’ve been worried that Squadrons’ playerbase won’t keep up in the long term, and these custom games at least ensure the game will be playable long after the matchmaking pools dry up.

There are a few smaller balance and bug fixes too, which can be found over on the official patch notes. Combined with last month’s new map, I’m pleasantly surprised to see EA turn around on earlier notions that Squadrons wouldn’t be getting any post-launch content. They’re good ships, I’m glad to get more of ’em.