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Star Wars Miniatures: Starship Battles» Forums » Sessions

Subject: At last, our first catch of the day! rss

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Bob Blaser
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Pearl Harbour Day.

I thought it would be an auspicious date to first try my hand at commanding a Moncalamari Cruiser, and a few X-wings, A-Wings, B-wings... you get the idea.

"Look at the SIZE of that thing!"

I'm a HUGE Star Wars fan - I've played the SW Miniatures game for about 2 years now and I really like that game. The Spaceships set was a natural next step for Wizards of the Coast and I couldn't wait to get my hands on them.

"Cut the Chatter Red 2."

Here are my first impressions of the game and the mins:

"An elegant weapon, not as clumsy or random as a blaster."

First of, the miniatures are excellent! Very high quality, except that some come bent - because they are plastic. I haven't tried with the starships yet, but with the regular mins you could dip them in hot water and bend them back into shape.

"Greed is the path to the Dark Side."

It seems to me that Wizards has used a bit more self restraint with the Starships. There are commons, uncommons and Rares - split fairly equally. No Very Rares, like in the regular mins. I've purchased the starter set and 7 boosters and have had pretty good luck with what I've gotten.

"I suggest a new strategy, R2. Let the wookie win."

How does the game play? I admit that there was a viceral thrill at being able to command these legendary ships - I could almost hear the whine of the engines, the chatter from the pilots as they were streaking towards their looming targers, lances of green and red cutting through space... However, the big ships have very powerful weapons that shoot across the board, with with no range depreciation and NO benefit of any cover. As the game progessed I felt like there was little to no tactics involved. You roll dice - blast the other guys ships and repeat as neccessary. I felt the rules were very light and lacking. Yes, there are different "armor/shield" values for the different facings of the vessels, and yes when a ship reaches about 1/2 of it's hull value it's abilities become impaired, but for the most part it mattered pretty little. One one time in our games did a figher get behind a capital ship and get a rear attack. The Turbolasors and Ion cannons effectively did their jobs in quick order. By turn 3 most all of the capital ships were drifting hulks and only a few fighters remained.

"They let us go."

The fighters met their opposition in the middle of the map, fought one or two skirmishes and then flew on. In the games we played by the time the fighters met, one side had lost all their capital ships already.

"You have failed me for the last time."

The SW Starship game uses a leader Command counter system. Some special ships start the game with one or two command counter which may be expended at any time to give a bonus to all ships of the same size category. This worked ok. Perhaps becase we were new, timing and which ships were affected was a little puzzling.

"I don't know, fly casual."

I really wanted more meat, more detail, more strategy to the battle.
The capital ships were just destroyed too quickly for my liking - espically for how many points they cost to bring in. I watched my all-time favorate Star Wars ship - the Imperial Star Destroyer go from full strength to a ball of fire and expanding gas in 1 round. And no, the entire fleet wasn't concentrating fire on it - just a few good dice rolls and that was it.

"This is where the fun begins."

Another gripe, The Rebels had fighters in the movies/books that are equipped with hyperdrives, so they could arrive at a battle ready to go, without having to launch from a carrier. This is not reflected in the SW Mins game - all fighters for both sides MUST start the game loaded in a carrier and must be launched. From what I've seen the "Light" side (Rebels and Old Republic forces) have the ability to launch fighters faster than the "Dark" side, but still for a purist, it's annoying.

"The Dark side clouds everyting."

Finally, the game has been designed with just the two factions: "Light" side and "Dark" side. So it is perfectly acceptable to say, build a Trade Federation Battleship and have it launch Tie Intercepters. Or have a MonCal Cruiser launch the Jedi Starfighters & Arc70 fighters from the Clone Wars. That didn't make a whole lot of sense to me as well, but I guess the game designers were constricted by the number of ships in the initial product roll out.

"Don't blame me."

In conclusion, I LOVE the mins. I hypothesize that the game was designed on the lite side to keep it short and appeal to the largest market. However, I think I will search for alternate rules to make the game a little more strategic - to my tastes.

Till I find it, May the Force be with you...always.

 
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Bill H
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StormShadow wrote:
...I think I will search for alternate rules to make the game a little more strategic - to my tastes.

Try Star Wars: Star Warriors.

Very nice review, I loved the movie quotes
 
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Andrew Adey
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Excellent review - I agree and could not put it better myself.

This needs to be a LITTEL more complex to be testing and enjoybale, else it`s just a slugfest for which you barely need the board.
 
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John Lopez
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There is an excellent set of mods for Silent Death that provide Star Wars ships. The conversion is actually quite simple.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/8410

http://www.wizards.com/starwars/downloads/SW_Silent_Death.pd...

However it doesn't cover capital ships. Franky, I find it a rare game that can mix capital ships and fighters successfully. It is very difficult to not make the fighters either paper that gets destroyed instantly, or overpowered for their size due to weapons that aren't scaled properly.

Of course, here in the real world, fighters are quite "overpowered" these days due to the relative ineffectiveness of point defense systems vs. missiles, which is why fleets maintain a strong layer of air cover. Allowing the enemy a shot at your ships isn't healthy.
 
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Bob Blaser
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Shijuro wrote:
StormShadow wrote:
...I think I will search for alternate rules to make the game a little more strategic - to my tastes.

Try Star Wars: Star Warriors.

Very nice review, I loved the movie quotes


Will do!

Thank you!
 
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Bob Blaser
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Godeke wrote:
There is an excellent set of mods for Silent Death that provide Star Wars ships. The conversion is actually quite simple.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/8410

http://www.wizards.com/starwars/downloads/SW_Silent_Death.pd...

However it doesn't cover capital ships. Franky, I find it a rare game that can mix capital ships and fighters successfully. It is very difficult to not make the fighters either paper that gets destroyed instantly, or overpowered for their size due to weapons that aren't scaled properly.

Of course, here in the real world, fighters are quite "overpowered" these days due to the relative ineffectiveness of point defense systems vs. missiles, which is why fleets maintain a strong layer of air cover. Allowing the enemy a shot at your ships isn't healthy.


Thanks Godeke, I'll check it out.

I agree with your real-world analogy - however, in the SW Mins game you can't ever be out of weapons range of the enemy. You start and remain throughout the game in weapon's range. So you can't say, launch fighters for a CAP or an attacking squadron and protect your carriers.

Bob
 
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Tyrel Lohr
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I have been tempted to buy some of these ships. If I do, I will likely use them with Starmada X. Full Thrust is also a popular choice, but I haven't played that system; Starmada X does everything I want a game to do.

-Tyrel
 
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Bob Blaser
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tyrel_lohr wrote:
I have been tempted to buy some of these ships. If I do, I will likely use them with Starmada X. Full Thrust is also a popular choice, but I haven't played that system; Starmada X does everything I want a game to do.

-Tyrel


I've played Full Thrust many times - often using the MicroMachines Star Wars and Star Trek mins. I found more strategy in Full Thrust than I did in Wizards rules for the Star Wars Starship battles.

I've never heard of Starmada X before.
Do you have a link for it?

Thanks!

Bob
 
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Joe Reil
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Hi Bob,

First, for Full Thrust, I don't know what books you currently have, but the 4 current rule books (Full Thrust 2nd, More Thrust, and Fleet Books 1 and 2) are available for free from Ground Zero:

http://www.gtns.co.uk/store1/commerce.cgi?page=downloads.htm...

As to Starmada, the manufacturer's website is here:

http://www.mj12games.com/

You'd probably want Starmada X, as that's the most current version. There are two versions of it available: Starmada X, and Starmada X: Brigade.

I own Brigade. As far as I know the only difference between X and X: Brigade is that Brigade includes a background universe based on Brigade Models starship miniatures and Starmada X stats for all of their models.

They sell print versions on their website. I got a download version (pdf) that was cheaper from another distributor.

Between the two, Full Thrust is my preference, but either would be a solid choice.
 
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