As you may or may not care, life and my career as a web architect / software engineer led me away from Star Wars the Card Game for about a year and a half. During that time, I relegated myself to (barely) supporting Dav and Whingewood while they continued to write amazing articles, keeping the site going from a server admin standpoint, and lovingly gazing at the game from afar. I’m pleased to say that I’ve come back to the game and looking to actively contribute my game observations here at the site again. (Since when did I ever need an excuse to throw my opinion around?)
One thing I wanted to do for a long time was take an individual card and look at it in and out of the context of its Objective Set. One of the cards I’ve been most fond of is the Trooper Assault Team, as I’ve been playing Navy since I’ve been back. Let’s talk about why I personally love what this card brought to Navy and why its presence is justified in the pod and in any Navy build you are thinking about creating.
Coming back at ya with a new spotlight, this week on the heroine of The Force Awakens – Rey.
Deal Physical damage to target enemy with a 40% chance to gain Foresight for 2 Turns.
Shifting Strike (Basic)
Deal Physical Damage to target enemy. In addition Rey gains Foresight for 2 turns if she doesn't have any positive status effects and Offense Up for 3 turns if she does.
Deal Physical damage to target enemy twice with a 55% chance to deal damage a third time. If Rey has any positive status effects she will deal damage one additional time. Hits after the first deal reduced damage.
Flurry of Blows (Special)
Rey has +23% Offense as long as she doesn't have any negative status effects.
Focused Strikes (Unique)
Risky Attacker that has high damage and evasion, but is vulnerable to debuffs.
So I’m aware my regular audience is among the die-hard and heavily invested Star Wars LCG players, but I expect (or hope) that to not always be true. New players are always popping up, and I want to make sure their transition from “knowing nothing” to “competing in tournaments” is as quick and painless as possible! Since the card pool has finally reached a healthy diversity, with three cycles and several deluxes, players have been able to finally play whatever style or affiliation they want and have a good deck that has a shot of winning against most opponents. However, in order for the card pool to be big enough to support that, especially with the artificial shrinking of the card pool via the objective set system, there needs to be a lot of expansions released, and there has been. If I’m a new player wanting to get into the game, assuming I have my two Core Sets (and two Edge of Darkness, which is an expansion of the Core Set), where do I begin? Do I shell out $300 for three cycles, or $75 for three deluxes? I’ve already invested over a hundred dollars into the game, so anything more is starting to look iffy.
Fortunately the LCG system allows us to pick and choose our purchases, and not all Force Packs are made equally. In this brief article, I’m going to go through the highlights of the Rogue Squadron Cycle, so that players know what to buy for each of their favorite affiliations. Players should always begin with buying Deluxe expansions, of course, but rather than spend $100 on the whole cycle, maybe they only need to get three packs from Rogue Squadron, and the other three they can pick up later. Hopefully this helps them know what packs to look out for.
It’s a daunting task – a game as grindy as Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes takes a lot of thought when it comes to resource management. While games like this tend to play upon your Pokemon sensibilities, rest assured that in no way is it going to be possible for your to cultivate dozens of characters with the energy and shards that you’ll have access to. Well, unless you’re independently wealthy – then by all means, send EA/Capital Games that cheddar and go to town. But for those looking, here’s a guide for starting out farming characters.
It’s nice to see packs coming out regularly on-schedule again. People complained about Imperial Entanglements being “late” because it was pre-released at GenCon, but it came out two months after the last Rogue Squadron pack, which was technically right on time. Now Worlds has come and gone and we’re ready to get our feet wet again with the newest cycle. This is the pack that introduces us to the Endor cycle, showing off the new Mission mechanic, providing some strong Ewok support, and providing some “out-of-faction” punishment that herald the new mechanics to come. If you’re interested in Ewoks, Droids, or Rebel Characters, this is a pack you should check out. Even Troopers get some support, though whether it’ll help to make the Trooper deck into a fighting force remains to be seen. I think this is a pack that everyone can find something they’ll like, and even the super-vanilla dark side neutral pod is incredible in the right matchup. So let’s get into it!
Moss here with the new Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes Weekly Focus. Let’s jump right in with Jedi Master Luminara Unduli, one of the strongest characters that you’ll gain access to.
Deal Physical damage to target enemy with a 35% chance to gain Evasion Up for 2 turns.
Flow of the Force (Basic)
Deal Physical damage to target enemy and inflict Ability Block for 1 turn.
Force Blast (Special)
Each ally recovers Health equal to 45% of Luminara Unduli's Max Health plus an additional 20% of their Max Health on the start of their next 2 turns.
Master Healer's Blessing (Special)
Jedi allies gain 13% Evasion and recover Health equal to 6% of Luminara's Max Health at the start of each of their turns. Non-Jedi allies receive half of the Evasion bonus and Heal effect.
Elegant Steps (Leader)
Versatile attacker with ability block and powerful party heal.
View Character Discussion
Deckbuilding is one of the most unique and interesting pieces of this game, which is why I wrote a whole article three weeks ago digging deep into it. But beyond just the way objective sets change how you evaluate cards, the objectives themselves fill a familiar yet unique role. While it’s remarkably similar to Call of Cthulhu and Warhammer 40k Conquest, with a deck dedicated to randomizing your victory point cards, I find myself comparing Star Wars’s objectives to A Game of Thrones’s plots more often. Yes, they’re your victory point cards and you need to score three to win, but you get to choose what you bring to the table, and they can represent some of the most powerful effects in the game. Anyone who’s played Star Wars even a little understands how tremendous an impact these cards can have on the game, whether they’re altering how units can act or changing (or breaking!) some of the fundamental rules of the game. They can be so significant that some decks are even built around having a specific objective in play, such that when that objective doesn’t show up, they’re struggling to keep up against their opponent. As objectives literally are the… er… objective… of the game, I wanted to discuss them in depth, and analyze how objective design has changed since the core set. So if you’re interested in the politics of Turn Zero, stick around!
A couple weeks ago, a major bomb was dropped on the community in the form of a new FAQ (pdf). However, unlike the previous FAQ updates, this one was actually more like a pinata of joy! Ever since May the Force Be With You and The Master’s Domain were put on the restricted list, players have been begging FFG to change the way the restricted list works to allow pods to be played alongside one another that are on the restricted list for different reasons. For example, Against All Odds and The False Report were put on the restricted list because the combination of those objective sets was simply too strong for the game to handle, and allowed for turn-one light side wins that the dark side player could do nothing to stop. The two Yoda sets were likewise restricted because the ability to play Yoda, You Seek Yoda and reliably get Yoda into play very early in every game and use him multiple times with May the Force Be With You was simply too oppressive for the dark side to keep up with. However, not being able to play May the Force Be With you to support a Dash-based Smuggler deck, and not being able to splash Freeholders into a Jedi deck, was very off-putting to many people. And then things got far worse when another turn-one combo deck was restricted (That Bucket o’ Bolts and Rogue Squadron Assault), putting Well Paid
and Holding All The Cards
on the restricted list together and inadvertently shutting down another deck that could have had legs.
However, with some smarter errata’s (Well Paid is now Deploy Phase only) and making the Restricted List operate in groups as players long requested, the Yellow faction that dominated the early part of the game has finally gotten its chance to return to the spotlight and remind the Rebel Alliance and the Jedi why it was so darn good in the first place.
Happy New Year! Over the summer, a thread on the CardgameDB forums popped up suggesting the community assemble a “strategy guide” for people who want to play Star Wars: the Card Game. The idea, as pitched, was that it would be a series of articles that gave insight into each aspect of the game, from deckbuilding to resource management to how to prioritize conflicts, edge battles, and the Force struggle. As this sounded a lot like the kind of articles that I aspire to write here on TeamSandcrawla, it only makes sense that I’d want to contribute! However, expansions come fast and often in this game so I’ve had to wait until now to have the chance to get an article in to contribute to the project. After writing a short piece on what to consider when adding resources to your deck, I figured the best place for me to start was with deckbuilding, because deckbuilding in this game is dramatically different from any other game. When building a deck for the first time, I never analyze these topics with this amount of thoroughness, as I find it more helpful to get the deck on the table and just start playtesting. However, going deep on these topics as I do here is something that is worth doing either if aggressive playtesting isn’t an option or if you’re planning on going to a major tournament and want your deck perfected. Still, even if you don’t sit down and consider the minutae of resources or affiliation matches when you’re first building your deck, these are things worth knowing when you get started with a new stack of cards.
Finally, before we get in, this is only a fraction of the topics that could potentially be considered in deckbuilding. I wanted to start with the most important ones, and then write a few follow-ups in the coming months with more ancillary deckbuilding concerns.