This unit guide will cover Director Orson Krennic, Architect of Terror.
Director Orson Krennic is an inexpensive commander for the Empire who brings an array of support abilities. Krennic is often run alongside his trusty Imperial Death Trooper entourage and is a capable commander to lead your Imperial force into victory. Here, I will first give an overview of Krennic’s stats. Next, I will go over potential upgrade options and how to play him. Finally, I will give some potential army ideas for Krennic.
- Strong support abilities (Compel, and Cunning)
- Two command upgrade slots
- Weak in combat
- Courage 2
At 75 points, Krennic is tied with General Veers for the cheapest non-generic Imperial commander. For this price you are getting a well-rounded commander. Because of his low price he can fit into multiple different styles of army and fill the support role.
Krennic has two weapon profiles. In melee, he only has one black dice with surge to critical. Krennic’s DT-29 Blaster Pistol is range 1-2 and single rainbow (1 Red, 1 Black, 1 White) with surge to critical and Pierce 1. The DT-29 averages 1.87 hits unaimed. Krennic also has Sharpshooter 1, which helps his offensive profile. While this profile is not very impressive, it can be quite useful late game. Krennic can easily push 1-2 hits through with pierce, which is amazing for finishing off low health units. Just remember he is extremely weak in melee, so be careful to not get too close to aggressive enemy units.
Krennic has 6 health and surging white saves, giving him 9 effective wounds. Krennic is difficult to kill in one attack but will quickly die under focused fire. This, combined with his weak offensive profile, often makes hiding Krennic until later in the game the best option.
Krennic’s best feature is his support abilities. First, Krennic has Compel, which can help manage suppression. Compel gives troopers a free move after the rally step if they are suppressed. This, in effect, gets you two full actions since you get the free move and one other action of your choice. Compel is great for supporting courage 1 units and helping them manage their suppression. The second main support ability is Cunning. Cunning makes you automatically win priority on a command card tie. This ability is amazing when you need priority on a specific turn. Finishing off a powerful unit with an attack can often be the difference between losing and winning a game. The final support ability is Entourage: Imperial Death Troopers. Entourage allows you to break force organization charts and take an extra Imperial Death Trooper unit. Additionally, during each turn, if Krennic is within range 2 of your Death Troopers, they get a free order. Because Entourage adds tons of value to Imperial Death Troopers you almost always run Krennic in tandem with a unit of Imperial Death Troopers. If you want to learn more about Imperial Death Troopers you can find our unit guide here.
Krennic is speed 2 with no mobility abilities, making him average for a trooper unit.
Krennic has two Command upgrade slots, resulting in a lot of flexibility in upgrade choice. Depending on the army, these slots can be left empty if you do not have a specific purpose for including an upgrade.
Aggressive Tactics is an expensive command upgrade (15 points) and should be built around if included in your army. I would typically recommend this upgrade in a single commander army that contains Shoretroopers. Shoretroopers benefit from receiving orders and do not surge on defense or offense, making surge tokens extremely valuable. If you are not running a Shoretrooper gunline, I would not recommend this upgrade due to its expensive cost.
Improvised Orders is a great upgrade for gaining some extra order control. Especially in light of the new mercenary units with the Independent keyword. This upgrade is great in a double bounty army or any army with a mercenary focus.
Lead by Example
Lead by Example is a good choice if you have no suppression mitigation in your army. Krennic has Compel which can help deal with suppression but will panic at 4 suppression since Krennic is only Courage 2. Inspire 2 can help you clear suppression off your units and keep them out of panic range.
Strict Orders is an alternate upgrade to help deal with suppression. This upgrade requires you to give orders to the units that you want to remove suppression from. Strict Orders is best in a Shoretrooper gunline similarly to Aggressive Tactics. Lead by Example is a better alternative to deal with suppression if you are not running a Shoretrooper army.
Underworld Connections is for armies where you want to give orders to mercenaries or include more mercenaries than you are typically allowed (1 of each rank max beside corps, 2 corps max). So if you want to play double bounty you need to use Underworld Connections. I often use this upgrade in a bounty hunter focused list since they are order hungry.
I only use this upgrade in a Krennic Vader army. Darth Vader loves dodges, so it is nice to hold onto a dodge each turn. Alternatively, this could be an option in a Pyke gunline.
Krennic has weak combat stats, so he typically just hides behind cover until scoring turns. Because of this, support gear are the only worthwhile upgrade options for Krennic.
Electrobinoculars gives Krennic Spotter 1, which is decent for supporting aim hungry units like Bossk and Death Troopers. The main drawback of this upgrade is its cost (8 points).
Portable Scanner gives Take Cover 1, which is only valuable if you have Vader in your army. Empire does not have many dodge synergies outside of Vader.
How to Play
Krennic’s main utility comes from his command cards and passive abilities. This means positioning is the main thing you should focus on with Krennic. First, Krennic wants to stay within range 2 of your Death Troopers, so you will always get the free order. Second, Krennic wants to stay within range 2 of your courage 1 units so he can Compel them if they become suppressed. The final thing you need to watch out for are aggressive enemy units. Especially now that Bounty Hunters are going to be popular, you want to make sure Krennic is not at risk of being taken down. While it may feel like you are wasting Krennic’s activations by taking a dodge and standby every turn, his value comes from his passive abilities, so you need to preserve Krennic’s health. I typically hide Krennic all game and then rush the scoring objective on turns 5 and 6. Notably, Krennic’s pistol can be great for finishing off low health units late in the game. Be patient and remember your passive abilities are very important, so don’t worry if Krennic just sits in place most of the game.
1 Pip: Voracious Ambition
Voracious Ambition is Krennic’s one pip and issues a single order to himself. At the beginning of the activation phase, you take 3 random order tokens and place them on this card giving you some extra order control. The main value from this card is the fact Krennic has Cunning, which gives you automatic priority on a tie. The second new perk of this card is its interaction with Independent. Because the 3 random tokens you pick are not issued to a unit, you can trigger Independent while also activating a mercenary unit at the time of your choosing. This is extremely helpful with mercenary units, since you can have priority, order control, and trigger the perks of Independent. This card also gives Seize the Initiative value on your other commanders or operatives. You can spend Seize the Initiative to give Vader an order and activation priority so he can tear apart an enemy unit. While the extra order control may seem like a minor perk, Krennic is only 75 points, making him the cheapest option in the game with Cunning.
2 Pip: Deploy the Garrison
Deploy the Garrison gives out 2 orders to any Trooper unit and gives out up to 2 free standby actions. Deploy the Garrison is good on turns where you expect an aggressive unit to dive into your gunline or for getting a free attack in melee. For example, if you give Vader a free standby in melee the standby can only be removed by Force Push, or a Suppressive melee attack. This results in a turn where Vader can attack twice safely. Boba Fett also benefits from standbys in melee. Now that Boba has 3 red dice in melee and his Integrated Rockets are Versatile, Boba is extremely effective in melee. Since you almost always will have a unit of Imperial Death Troopers at the very least, this card is a free aim since Imperial Death Troopers have Ready 1 (after you perform a standby action, gain 1 aim token).
3 Pip: Annihilation Looms
Annihilation Looms is Krennic’s 3 pip and is the weakest out of his 3 command cards. This card gives an order to Krennic and 2 units of your choice. The card gives out 1 suppression token to each unit, or on round 5 or 6 gives out 2 suppression tokens. The main issue with this card is the fact that it gives suppression to all units, including friendly units. Empire struggles to deal with suppression more than the Clone Wars factions, which means this effect is often more detrimental on your own troops than your opponents. Because of this, I typically leave it at home and use generic 3 pips.
Because Krennic is so inexpensive, there are lots of different armies he can fit in. Here, I will focus on some bounty hunter armies in light of the new mercenary rules that were recently released.
I am very excited to get this army out on the table. Boba Fett received huge buffs in the mercenary update and synergizes well with Krennic. Cunning is devastating when combined with a first last from Boba. Two attacks from Boba results in a total of 10 black dice with Impact 2, Pierce 2, Sharpshooter 2, and Surge to Critical. Also, Hunter can provide you with potential aims on these attacks. Two back-to-back attacks from Boba can 100% to 0% many commander units, resulting in massive bounty pressure. Additionally, Boba now benefits from Deploy the Garrison since his melee profile was buffed. Krennic Boba is also amazing on Recover the Supplies. You can either Whipcord Launcher out of Melee and run with a box or gain automatic priority with Voracious Ambition and run away with a box. Besides the synergy between Boba and Krennic, you also have a deadly gunline with 5 Specialist T-21 Stormtrooper units, and Death Troopers. Specialist Stormtroopers are timing-neutral but are susceptible to suppression. Compel helps to overcome suppression, and Boba is order hungry, which makes him strongest alongside timing-neutral core units. All of this together makes me very excited to get Krennic Boba on the table.
Krennic Bossk or Krossk, is a classic army that had new life breathed into with the mercenary update. I ran Krossk back in the before times and was able to get 2nd place at fake worlds (Knowledge and Defense TTS Tournament) with this army. A few things have changed since then, making this army a viable option again. First Stormtrooper Specialists, T-21 Stormtroopers, and Bossk all received points reductions making it so you can run a solid 11 activations. Second, Bossk, Death Troopers, and DF-90 Mortars are all range 4 and Suppressive. The list worked back in the day because of ranged synergy and now I believe it is competitive again due to all the points reductions. It is worth mentioning that this army will struggle to deal with melee threats, so make sure you use your range advantage and suppression to slow any aggressive units.
This army is built to augment the power of Darth Vader by providing Cunning and a free standby from Deploy the Garrison. Because of Vader’s deadly melee pool, each extra attack has the potential to kill an entire unit. If Vader is sitting on 1 health, Cunning can swing the tide of the game by guaranteeing Vader one last attack before he dies. The gunline is simple and built to support Vader at range by shooting off Standbys and providing extra dodges with Vigilance.
Krennic, while less flashy than many other commanders, is still a great option for leading an Imperial force. I believe Krennic is one of the more exciting Imperial commanders because of all the new synergies with the mercenary units and buffed bounty hunters. I hope this guide was helpful and encourages you to put Director Orson Krennic on the table.