Sunday, 20 August 2017

Gaming Star Wars...

Well, one of the largest game conventions in the world, GenCon, has come and gone. In past years I would have been eagerly pouring over the list of new releases and announcements, keeping abreast of my favourite companies and looking eagerly forward to the games shown and talked about. I am not disinterested this year, but some of the flame has dimmed, I have shelves of games and some of them sit, as yet, unplayed.

Nonetheless, it is an important time for the hobby, and I was thrilled to see Modiphius walk away with a swag of Ennies. I read that, from a trade perspective, this year was an absolutely bumper one for game sales, with many publishers underestimating the stock they would require. This can only be a good thing for the hobby!

Two games announced recently (one actually at GenCon) have me most keenly interested. The first is the publication of the 30th Anniversary Edition of the Star Wars Role Playing Game. First published by West End in the 80s, this RPG has a seminal place in my own gaming history and I have very fond memories of playing it.

More recently I have enjoyed the newer FFG Edge of the Empire Star Wars game, but the West End system holds a special place in my nostalgic heart. I think I'll be picking it up for this, if for no other reason. I'm thrilled to see FFG releasing this anniversary edition - it looks good.

The other big game announced at GenCon was Star Wars: Legion. A ground based miniatures game set in the Star Wars universe - more specifically the first trilogy era (IV, V, and VI). Many moons ago I played and rather enjoyed the West End Star Wars miniatures game, and this new offering has me interested.

The box comes with a variety of goodies, specifically 33 miniatures and all the accouterments required to play. Orders look to be given through token placement, and there are special movement rulers and dice, not unlike what we have seen with X-Wing, Armada and Runewars. I'm not adverse to these elements, but one thing does hold me back: the use of special cards and powers. I like a good special rule in miniatures games - it helps add flavour without front loading complexity, but I'm not a huge fan of how it was carried through in X-Wing - with certain cards only available in certain expansions, and a tendency in the competitive arena to buy boxes of stuff for a handful of cards.

I'm also a little hesitant given FFGs history of having new models out-compete the older ones. I don't begrudge a company for making money, far from it, and I'm not the sort of person who is much interested in building a highly competitive force - enough to have fun is what I'm after. Still, these elements have me pausing. Perhaps they are concerns for naught - Fantasy Flight make some excellent games and I'm sure Legion will be one of them. The Star Wars IP is one that I enjoy, and so I may end up getting Legion, but I think I'll wait for now...

Photos from GenCon do look particularly awesome though...


  1. The 30th Anniversary Edition is something I'll most likely pick up, even though I still own the original (well, translated into Swedish) in great condition.

    Legion is interesting, but just like yourself, I'm a bit wary of the whole card model FFG is pursuing in many of their collectible games. It's cool in many ways, but in the end it is what made me give up on X-Wing (as in stop buying new stuff, I still play with what I have) as it gave me a kind of combo-fatigue.
    The rules themselves actually seem to be quite similar to Dust Warfare, that I've played a lot and really like. Will be interesting to see what kind of expansions the game will get.

    1. I agree - while the cards are a useful way to condense information and make complexity easily playable, they also add a collectibility element that I am not a fan of.

      As you said - it will be interesting to see how it is expanded!

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