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Subject: Why is 4 worst player count? Tips for rebels? rss

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Ben Rubinstein

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Hi all!

I'm going to play this for the very first time tonight. No one in the group has played it before. My husband and I both played about 4 sessions of Descent 2E. He was the overlord, and he lost every damn time. And refused to play again after losing 4 times in a row. I'm going to be overlord this time, but I've read that this edition is as skewed FOR the overlord as D2E was FOR the heroes. Is there truth to that? Are there tips I should give the heroes? I'm more concerned with them having fun than I am with winning, and I feel like if it's another 4-in-a-row losing streak for them, they'll get disheartened.

Also, I know it's not a huge deal, but about 18% say "not recommended" for 4 players? Why is that? Is the balance shifted dramatically one way or the other?

Thanks!
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brian
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The game is designed to have 4 heroes in play (so 5 players). With only 3 rebels one player needs to take on a 2nd character or you have to pass around the 4th activation token. So it is less than ideal. With only 2 rebels, each can have two characters or they both have a permanent second activation. So it is just an oddball number for this game.

As far as one side or the other, it just depends on play style. In my PlayByForum game we are getting crushed as the rebels. In my face2face games the Rebels usually win. But on the flip side, there are no winners or losers technically until the finale.
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Antonia
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epilepticemu wrote:
I'm going to be overlord this time, but I've read that this edition is as skewed FOR the overlord as D2E was FOR the heroes. Is there truth to that? Are there tips I should give the heroes? I'm more concerned with them having fun than I am with winning, and I feel like if it's another 4-in-a-row losing streak for them, they'll get disheartened.
The popular opinion is that Descent 2nd Edition favors the heroes when at a 4 hero game. Some of the quests are quite unbalanced in Descent, that is true. And I also felt sometimes disheartened as the Overlord.
Imperial Assault is way more balanced in my opinion. Some of the quests of the base game still favor one side but most of them can fall one or the other way.
The most unbalanced quest in the base game is "A New Thread" in my opinion. With 4 heroes it is quite hard to win without prior knowledge.

Quote:

Also, I know it's not a huge deal, but about 18% say "not recommended" for 4 players? Why is that? Is the balance shifted dramatically one way or the other?
You should always play with 4 heroes, no matter how many players you have. The whole game was designed around 4 heroes and some of the quests get easier or harder with only 2 heroes with 2 activations.
This being said if you really want to play with less heroes there is a system in place which lets you activate the heroes several times per turn. Or each player can control several heroes.
Of course this is the most fun if everybody controls the same amount of heroes, so 3 players is not as good as two people controlling each 2 heroes or having each 2 activations.
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Ben Rubinstein

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Ahh ok, thanks for the input. I had forgotten that it was balanced around activation. D2E had different stats for 2, 3 or 4 heroes, and I just assumed it was like that.

Are any of the heroes more powerful than others? I'll let them choose whether they would rather have 1 person with 2 characters, or have the additional activation token. But if there are only 3 heroes, I'd probably want them to know which are the more powerful ones.
 
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John Fanjoy
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epilepticemu wrote:
Are there tips I should give the heroes? I'm more concerned with them having fun than I am with winning, and I feel like if it's another 4-in-a-row losing streak for them, they'll get disheartened.
Make sure you read to them or they read everything in the Campaign Guide up to and including the "opening crawl." Also be sure to read aloud all of the text (both flavor and rules) for mission events (excepting "choose one" options you don't select).

And check this thread:
https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1319188/what-are-some-crazy...
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Pasi Ojala
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Get the Imperial Assault Campaign module for Vassal from http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module:Star_Wars:_Imperial_Assault
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I'm simplifying a bit, but no rebel hero is powerful by itself. It is about synergies.

Gideon can Command other rebels to places or to shoot, while needing very little credits spent on upgrades. He's content with his class cards.

Gaarkhan can get rid of low-health imperial figures effectively (at least with Rampage and BD-1 Vibro-Ax) at close range.

Diala gives other rebels rerolls (Force Adept) and focus (Battle Meditation). Alternatively if she gets the lightsaber, she can develop to a killing machine.

Jyn is quick to move and quick to draw. Or she can be recoinnance and crate expert.

Mak is a Covert sniper rarely seen, and quick when he's Disengaging. And he can call his supplier for materials..

Fenn Blasts enemies with Havoc Shot and is not bad at anything he does. But not particularly good at anything either.


But, the first campaign is a learning one. You don't know and can't know exactly which things are interesting. And depending on how the missions go, and what you need, you can end up with different skills and items bought. Some skills are still so good that most hero groups end up with them by default.
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epilepticemu wrote:
Are any of the heroes more powerful than others? I'll let them choose whether they would rather have 1 person with 2 characters, or have the additional activation token. But if there are only 3 heroes, I'd probably want them to know which are the more powerful ones.
I would definitely recommend to use 4 heroes. Another viable option is to have a shared hero.

To the "is one hero more powerful than the others" no definite answer exists in my opinion. It heavily depends on the other heroes in play and the play style of the hero players.
For example Gaarkhan can be a beast, combined with Gideon he can deal a ton of damage.

You might want to check out this thread: Hero Poll - What's the best Hero ranking? (Base Game) - Community Vote

I would suggest that you give your players a short overview over each hero and let them decide which one they like the best.

Gaarkhan: A tank, highly focused on melee
Gideon: Support character, can boost the other heroes. For example by allowing them to interrupt and attack.
Fenn: Focused on ranged attacks. Can effectively do damage on a complete area.
Diala: The Yedi, can be either skilled to be a close combat fighter or to give support to the others.
Jyn: The gunslinger. Specializes in pistols and can interrupt to shoot during a hostile activation.
Mak: The sniper. Highly efficient in large distances. Can go into a "stealth mode" if he is far enough away and not be attacked.

Edit: ninja'ed by Pasi. Who would ever expect that?
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epilepticemu wrote:
I'm more concerned with them having fun than I am with winning, and I feel like if it's another 4-in-a-row losing streak for them, they'll get disheartened.
I would recommend choosing Technological Superiority as your class, it is considered the weakest of the 3 imperial classes in the base game.

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Also, I know it's not a huge deal, but about 18% say "not recommended" for 4 players? Why is that? Is the balance shifted dramatically one way or the other?
With only 3 heroes the game is easier for the rebels. One hero that can activate twice is stronger than 2 heroes.
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Jeremy N
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4 is the best player count.

2 and 3 player games penalize the Rebels by giving less starting Endurance. 3 player games also penalize by giving a total of 9 health to the 3 players, which is less than the weakest Hero. There are a few missions where the extra player activations are nice, but not many. Generally being Strain-limited is a penatly.


If you don't want to make your husband cry, then don't play the Subversive Tactics deck.


Generally as Heroes you want:
1. Jyn: She's the only character that begins the game with the ability to attack 3 times, which helps prevent early-game snowball. Gunslinger lets her hit really hard, get the DL-44.
2. Diala: Force Adept and Way of the Sarlaac. 'nuff said. Force Throw is icing on the cake. And Jedi.


Beyond that, Gaarkhan, Fenn, Mak, and Gideon are a toss-up.

Gaarkhan is handy for his ability to cross difficult terrain and blockades without movement penalty. And his survivability.

Fenn is broken/powerful because you don't have to decide to use Blast (Havoc Shot) until after dice are rolled. And it only costs 1 Strain. His ability cards can also provide a wide variety of utility for strategy.

Mak is a glass-cannon late game with Ambush, Jeswandi Training, and No Escape (virtually single-handedly won us Last Stand).

Gideon makes everyone else better. Money is limited, you can't get everyone shiny weapons. Gideon lets other people take more turns and buffs them.
 
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