It was June the 7th of our year 2022 and everyone was pumped as hell for Ministravaganza. Everyone on the Legion Discord was excited, to the point when even #garchat was barely complaining about
anything everything, we were just ready to see the new stuff! BUT THEN!
We at The Fifth Trooper more than anything hope that everyone at AMG is at worst just a bit sniffly and annoyed, and I want to start by saying that they certainly didn’t owe us anything over the course of this week but they still came through and delivered a BOATLOAD of goods on our doorstep just in this first day! There’s a lot to cover and most of it it pretty basic but I’ll try to hit everything to recap for folks who may have missed the action.
Shadow Collective Force Org
Thanks to an article penned by LJ Pena, we’ve now gotten our first taste at what “Battle Forces” will be like with regards to how the number of units shake out. The units included are mostly what’s expected, if those “Swoop bikes” are throwing you for a loop I promise we’ll get to that below. Like many I think it’s great that the first foray into mercenaries is a specific battle force, this one breaks the rules a bit but not a ton…it basically trades a required corps for an available special forces slot. What’s neat is that the operative and commander slot is basically shared. This doesn’t mean a TON yet but it does mean that if you hate order control you can pair Maul with Cad and Bossk. I spit-balled very quickly for some examples below of fun lists that break force org, the ones that aren’t 14 acts of mostly range 2 are probably even pretty decent!
Another important nugget in that article is that we’ll get a new Rules Reference Guide on June 14, this Tuesday! Here’s hoping that it’s not JUST the REAL rules on “Allies of convenience” but a few points adjustments too?
Gar Saxon’s Shield
And here we thought we’d seen all the cards! This one was added kinda quietly to the website and is listed as a Print and Play, suggesting that it’s not in the box. Printing error? Last minute waffle? It doesn’t matter, it’s the first shield with TWO ways to come back. He can take a recover to recharge or let it cycle back. It can set up quite a dilemma for an opponent, if you bother to take the shield out you only have the rest of that turn and the next one before it comes back REGARDLESS of any recover actions. I’d say that’s worth the 5 points over a Sabine style shield, but time will tell.
A Taste of Faction Battle Forces
We don’t know the charts for these Battle Forces yet (tomorrow AMG? I promise to try the AT-RT if you do!) but we have some AMAZING box art and a peek at the plastic that will be included. Since I’ve seen a lot of confusion on this I want to make sure you’re all keyed into the facts on the boxes:
- We know each Battle Force has three commands that are unique to it, and the Imperial battleforce also contains a new unit card (a stormtrooper with two heavy weapons per a recent stream) to augment the relatively sad arsenal of snowtroopers. They will also have varying min/max unit counts just like Shadow Collective does above
- You don’t need to BUY anything to run these particular battle forces, they will be released as print-and-play
- The boxes, therefore, are really for those that want to expand their minis collection. Yes it will have official cardboard for the command cards and some upgrade cards that can be found elsewhere, but if you already have these minis I really would advise caution, especially because…
- The minis do NOT appear to have any new sculpts. We can also assume that the GCW minis are the old school soft plastic. One can surmise that surplus product was one reason behind having these boxes, but remember that not everyone is a grizzled old player that has all the stuff. I myself may get echo base because I have none of that, and my brother is always attracted to the allure of rebel jankery
- The box art is INCREDIBLE and I would love to know who did it!
With that out of the way, let’s dig into what AMG showed us today! For each of them I’ll name the commands and anything else we can tell about them from the little preview images (usually not much)
This is our first foray into the world of “let’s hope the RRG helps them out” since Tauns and FD’s aren’t exactly wrecking face. I held nothing back when evaluating the canon accuracy of nearly all these units and I naturally stand by my opinion that, in the film, these guys couldn’t defend themselves from a light breeze, let alone a “Blizzard Force” (LOL, that name…ha) but anyway…
- 1 Pip: Delaying Tactics
- 2 Pip: Courage of the Rebellion (2 units)
- 3 Pip: Hold at Any Cost
I’m fairly sure that Vader tracked down the guy who named this army and found a bottomless Star Wars shaft to toss him into. At some point I may end up writing canon accuracy articles for these Battle Forces, when that happens I’ll research why it’s called this, until then I absolutely refuse. The mysterious new double heavy stormtrooper unit is certainly interesting but we’ll really need the card for that one. Honestly this looks like exactly the sort of list that a new player would naturally gravitate towards currently only to find that Commander Vader and Snows doesn’t work QUITE as well as you’d like, but with that new unit and new cards (along with other possible adjustments) I think this has a lot of potential to be a “Hold the W key, but slowly” list.
- 1 Pip: Unrelenting Fire
- 2 Pip: Overwhelming Barrage
- 3 Pip: Prepare for Ground Assault
Honestly this (like MOST of these Battle Forces) would be an excellent way to dive into CIS with GG, a tank, and FOUR B1 units. And also dekas are over here how cute! Alright, don’t get me started on you guys that are griping about the name. THESE ARE DROIDS, they aren’t exactly naming their armies after their favorite servers back home. This is an invasion force, different from occupation, different from defense, just roll with it my goodness….
- 1 Pip: AI Coordination (2 Corps Units)
- 2 Pip: Unrelenting Assault
- 3 Pip: Unstoppable Advance
As I stall a bit more before I have to eat my broccoli as a GAR player…AMG, if you’re reading this, I think I’m catching your drift on the naming conventions of these bad guy command cards, so if you need writer, I’ve already got a few:
- Unabated Aggression
- Unyielding Onslaught
- Inexorable Incursion
- Steadfast Strike
- Strong Attack
- Shoot You
- Star Wars
Ok, the broccoli thing was mostly a joke, but it goes without saying that the army one would make out of the included units is…a bit eyebrow raising in terms of cost:
Funny enough, P2’s and ARC’s used to be hard to find in stores. Who knows what 6/14’s RRG will have in store for us, we can only hope that full ARC’s go down by like….a lot, and maybe P2 and ATRT a bit for that matter, to help this Battle Force fit a little better. As much as I love my boy Anakin, this is the one box so far where I’d hesitate before a new player, with their bright unknowing eyes, asked me if they should buy THIS as the starter set. All of these units are undeniably cool in the fiction, let’s see if they can function together in the game…please?
- 1 Pip: Lead from the Front (1 Commander)
- 2 Pip: Tactical Planning (??? Special Forces)
- 3 Pip: Leaders of the 501st
We’ve got basically nothing but the boxes for these so let’s round everything out with some quick hits!
To be released 10/21/22. This should be interesting, depending on release timing Rebels may have a Bounty Hunter on their side before “Dad Boba” comes out. Seems like 88 may be more standard while 11 can self destruct, one could guess it’s the same as the spider droid or at least very close. Impressively, the box comes with 5 command cards, so one can guess that each droid has a unique one AND there are three more than can be used by either. I bet one of those cards is gonna be called…Assassinating Assassination??? (ok sorry)
To be released 8/19/22 (SOON!). Keen readers of the Shadow Collective article released today will have noticed that LJ basically told us that these guys will have “Reinforcements.” That’s pretty neat for any speeder bike, but don’t close the window just yet…squint a bit and you’ll notice that.
- These guys are on “Medium,” Dewback/BARC Sized bases so they’re a bit faster than Imperial speeder bikes
- They have axes, AXES!!! One can guess this will be the first unit with a compulsory move AND a melee weapon and I’m all about it. Also, the gun will be something less than the Imperial bikes to make up for this new feature
- It can go into Shadow Collective, Rebel, and (strangely) Republic. I say strangely because as much as I love to hate on it we DO already have the BARC and while I’m sure this will fill a different role (depending on mercenary rules) it will actually push GAR support slots into the “fastest” in the game with a full THREE (along with the Fluttercraft) units with the “Speeder” keyword. Also, Rebs finally get something in this slot that isn’t on two legs or completely stationary. Neat!