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Subject: Which Faction for First Time Player? rss

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Justin L
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Hey guys,

Which faction do you think a first time player should play? I feel like the Rebels have a much more stressful role to play but it's a lot more for the Empire to have to keep up with. I also think the the Imperial player is worse off for not knowing the Rebel objectives ahead of time than the Rebel player is.

What do you think?
 
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Jacob Williams
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Empire for sure. They play much more like a typical dudes-on-a-map type game.

Also, consider giving a new empire player a one leader handicap. That is to say, give them an extra leader to start with and a matching action card.
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Chris Kanakos
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Depends who you play with. For really analytical people I would actually give them Rebels first. If not they can take forever and suffer from Analysis Paralysis with the empire... so much to consider.

I played a game and it took 7.5 hours because the empire player was new and was super analyzing everything... he even drew a map of the board to help pin down where the base was/wasn't (now I have maps printed out). His last turn he took 25 minutes just to decide on what missions to do because he had the full 8 leaders lol.

He did beat me on his first game but I was worn down because the game was so long (but I did not roll over!!!) NEVAR!
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Saro Gumusyan

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After going against many inexperienced players on TTS, I would argue first timers should play as the Rebels.

The first-time setup has a passive deployment that allows the Rebels to move the fleet on Bothawui out of harm's way if need be. The limited units they have encourages mission play, which is the lifeblood of the Rebel player. They should be using Build Alliance and at least one of Infiltration or Sabotage every turn. The only thing I would advise the Rebel player on is to play Rapid Mobilization as soon as the Empire is adjacent to the base.

The Empire on the other hand must use fleets to increase its own production, decrease Rebel production and narrow the base down. I've seen too many players get bogged down on missions and waste moves. Missions for the Empire should be situational since the main goal is power projection.
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Justin L
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xsquidz wrote:
Depends who you play with. For really analytical people I would actually give them Rebels first. If not they can take forever and suffer from Analysis Paralysis with the empire... so much to consider.

I played a game and it took 7.5 hours because the empire player was new and was super analyzing everything... he even drew a map of the board to help pin down where the base was/wasn't (now I have maps printed out). His last turn he took 25 minutes just to decide on what missions to do because he had the full 8 leaders lol.

He did beat me on his first game but I was worn down because the game was so long (but I did not roll over!!!) NEVAR!


See, now you've scared me. The person in question is really analytical and has been a pain in the ass to play with in Imperial Assault because he takes forever.
 
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Doug DeMoss
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I argue the opposite - first-time players should play the Empire. There are two main reasons for that.

First, the basic setup is, itself, pro-Empire. It's a passive Rebel setup and takes the aggressive Rebel strategy from the very beginning that many of us favor off the table.

More importantly, though, you have to just accept that the beginner WILL LOSE their first game if they're playing against someone with a couple plays under their belt. If they're playing the Rebels, they likely will have felt helpless, accomplished little, and had no fun. If they're playing the Empire, on the other hand, they'll have won some battles and at least gotten somewhere on the path to victory, and they'll want to come back and play again.
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Chris Kanakos
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IamtheLaw382 wrote:
xsquidz wrote:
Depends who you play with. For really analytical people I would actually give them Rebels first. If not they can take forever and suffer from Analysis Paralysis with the empire... so much to consider.

I played a game and it took 7.5 hours because the empire player was new and was super analyzing everything... he even drew a map of the board to help pin down where the base was/wasn't (now I have maps printed out). His last turn he took 25 minutes just to decide on what missions to do because he had the full 8 leaders lol.

He did beat me on his first game but I was worn down because the game was so long (but I did not roll over!!!) NEVAR!


See, now you've scared me. The person in question is really analytical and has been a pain in the ass to play with in Imperial Assault because he takes forever.


Give him the rebels for sure. Yesterday I got in two good games with a new player in six hours because he was rebels. First I smoked him (but it was his 1st game ever) 2nd game I still won but it was much closer and he did make a few mistakes.
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Saro Gumusyan

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demoss1 wrote:
I argue the opposite - first-time players should play the Empire. There are two main reasons for that.

First, the basic setup is, itself, pro-Empire. It's a passive Rebel setup and takes the aggressive Rebel strategy from the very beginning that many of us favor off the table.

More importantly, though, you have to just accept that the beginner WILL LOSE their first game if they're playing against someone with a couple plays under their belt. If they're playing the Rebels, they likely will have felt helpless, accomplished little, and had no fun. If they're playing the Empire, on the other hand, they'll have won some battles and at least gotten somewhere on the path to victory, and they'll want to come back and play again.


You make a good point about aggressive Rebel deployment, but I've seen inexperienced players put too many units in harm's way allowing for counterattacks to wipe them out or ground them. At least the first time set up allows the Rebels to bulk up that deployment for a future engagement.
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The only time a first time player said they would have preferred the rebels was cause the goal as the empire was too big, she wanted little specific goals which the rebels do.

Despite that I alwaysgive new players the imperial side, along with admiral ozell for the first 3 turns of the game (to compensate for his mistakes/oppositions).
I give them a map to mark up (available in resource section), also a printed out sheet with all the rebel objectives, pointing out the major ones.

The main problem is that despite playing new players I dont want to play the basic setup anymore.
 
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David Umstattd
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I suggest rebels. Making mistakes as the rebels can be much more forgiving as the rebels are designed to bounce back after getting whacked really hard.

Also because rebel mostly do missions it's not difficult for a new player to just play the cards in his hand and do relatively well. With the empire you're forced to expand a lot and keep track of systems and the empire is hurt the most by not understanding the deck.

Rebels is very simple. You have objective cards. You try to complete those objectives.

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David Umstattd
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Darth Coupon wrote:
demoss1 wrote:
I argue the opposite - first-time players should play the Empire. There are two main reasons for that.

First, the basic setup is, itself, pro-Empire. It's a passive Rebel setup and takes the aggressive Rebel strategy from the very beginning that many of us favor off the table.

More importantly, though, you have to just accept that the beginner WILL LOSE their first game if they're playing against someone with a couple plays under their belt. If they're playing the Rebels, they likely will have felt helpless, accomplished little, and had no fun. If they're playing the Empire, on the other hand, they'll have won some battles and at least gotten somewhere on the path to victory, and they'll want to come back and play again.


You make a good point about aggressive Rebel deployment, but I've seen inexperienced players put too many units in harm's way allowing for counterattacks to wipe them out or ground them. At least the first time set up allows the Rebels to bulk up that deployment for a future engagement.


There's no reason whatsoever to use the basic setup if you're playing with a new rebel player. With a new empire player sure just to save time and keep them from making huge mistakes.

you don't always have to be agressive with setup as the rebels. It's equally viable to hold back your forces and hold an important planet. Forcing the empire to send a large force to utupau or Geonosis (and hopefully divert his forces away from your rebel base.)

Sure being aggressive can be good but it's not required. It's important to try and preserve as many units as possible as the rebels. As you won't get a lot of chances to replace them.
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Saro Gumusyan

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David Umstattd wrote:
Darth Coupon wrote:
demoss1 wrote:
I argue the opposite - first-time players should play the Empire. There are two main reasons for that.

First, the basic setup is, itself, pro-Empire. It's a passive Rebel setup and takes the aggressive Rebel strategy from the very beginning that many of us favor off the table.

More importantly, though, you have to just accept that the beginner WILL LOSE their first game if they're playing against someone with a couple plays under their belt. If they're playing the Rebels, they likely will have felt helpless, accomplished little, and had no fun. If they're playing the Empire, on the other hand, they'll have won some battles and at least gotten somewhere on the path to victory, and they'll want to come back and play again.


You make a good point about aggressive Rebel deployment, but I've seen inexperienced players put too many units in harm's way allowing for counterattacks to wipe them out or ground them. At least the first time set up allows the Rebels to bulk up that deployment for a future engagement.


There's no reason whatsoever to use the basic setup if you're playing with a new rebel player. With a new empire player sure just to save time and keep them from making huge mistakes.

you don't always have to be agressive with setup as the rebels. It's equally viable to hold back your forces and hold an important planet. Forcing the empire to send a large force to utupau or Geonosis (and hopefully divert his forces away from your rebel base.)

Sure being aggressive can be good but it's not required. It's important to try and preserve as many units as possible as the rebels. As you won't get a lot of chances to replace them.


As fun as action cards are I feel omitting them from first-time play helps since it takes time for new players to learn the mechanics of them and the assignment phase and the cards can throw some nasty surprises.

I agree that the Rebels don't need to start aggressively but it can be warranted depending on system setup and deployment, like messing with Corellia, for example.
 
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David Umstattd
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action cards are no more complicated than anything else in the game. And for the rebels you're put at a disadvantage if you don't use the action cards since the rebel's action cards are superior to the empire ones.
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Justin
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Empire, and it's not even close. They're straightforward. Rebel strategy, and perception of success, is opaque.
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Dave Weiss
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I honestly feel new players should paly as the Empire.
The gameplay is straight forward. Move some forces, control some systems, play some missions. I'm hunting for a base and I need to crush it.
Rebel gameplay is a crazy, frustrating race towards ever moving and shifting goals. Plus, as a first time Rebel player, you are likely to just feel overwhelmed by the sheer force of the Imperial forces.

Even as an experienced player, I find the first half of the game is really frustrating for the Rebels. It's hard to make a move that doesn't instantly get countered and crushed. A new rebel player would just be at a loss to figure out how they could make any inroads.

The other nice part is you have a solid chance at showing how the rebels are supposed to play, and how they can pull off last minute victories.

I think AP can be an issue for either side. As the Imps, you have a lot of options to choose from, true. But as the Rebels, you have to predict what the enemy is going to try to do.

Beyond that, the details of cards is crucial in this game. Objectives especially. Destroying ground units vs space units. Having to be done in a combat that you initiated. All those little conditional factors are just additional things the player has to keep track of.
A lot of the rebel missions really benefit from using combos of missions to achieve interesting results. It's often hard to see those combos as a first time player.
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Matt Kruse
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New players should def play empire. As others have said the empire has a clear straight forward goal. Will feel good about the game even if they lose because of their massive forces.

If they start rebels... guaranteed first turn they will play gather intel or sabotage or something and boom captured by Vader. Will make them hate the game.
 
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Mike
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I think it's best to approach the first game with the idea that the new player will lose to the experienced player no matter what. Therefore, you shouldn't worry about which side will give them the best chance to win, but which side they will enjoy playing as the most. For most people, especially anyone with any kind of previous war game experience, that probably means playing as the Empire because at least you get to move a bunch of cool ships around the board and feel powerful for a few rounds. I could see how some people would really get into the mission play of the Rebels though so you might want to think about which play style your friend would like better.
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James Cheng
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ninjamatic3000 wrote:
I think it's best to approach the first game with the idea that the new player will lose to the experienced player no matter what. Therefore, you shouldn't worry about which side will give them the best chance to win, but which side they will enjoy playing as the most. For most people, especially anyone with any kind of previous war game experience, that probably means playing as the Empire because at least you get to move a bunch of cool ships around the board and feel powerful for a few rounds. I could see how some people would really get into the mission play of the Rebels though so you might want to think about which play style your friend would like better.


I like this. While I would answer "Empire" like others in a vacuum, knowing who you're playing with could help you decide which side is more appropriate for them. Some people likes to move pieces around the board and feel powerful. Some people likes to be covert and stealthy.
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Chris Kanakos
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eunoia wrote:
ninjamatic3000 wrote:
I think it's best to approach the first game with the idea that the new player will lose to the experienced player no matter what. Therefore, you shouldn't worry about which side will give them the best chance to win, but which side they will enjoy playing as the most. For most people, especially anyone with any kind of previous war game experience, that probably means playing as the Empire because at least you get to move a bunch of cool ships around the board and feel powerful for a few rounds. I could see how some people would really get into the mission play of the Rebels though so you might want to think about which play style your friend would like better.


I like this. While I would answer "Empire" like others in a vacuum, knowing who you're playing with could help you decide which side is more appropriate for them. Some people likes to move pieces around the board and feel powerful. Some people likes to be covert and stealthy.


It does depend a lot on who you are playing with. My first post said give them rebels *IF* they suffer from analysis paralysis. The reason why is I can tell you from experience those types of players take WAY longer with the empire to complete a game but as we can see from the variety of posts each way, its not a clear cut answer which is better to start with.
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xsquidz wrote:
Depends who you play with. For really analytical people I would actually give them Rebels first. If not they can take forever and suffer from Analysis Paralysis with the empire... so much to consider.

I played a game and it took 7.5 hours because the empire player was new and was super analyzing everything... he even drew a map of the board to help pin down where the base was/wasn't (now I have maps printed out). His last turn he took 25 minutes just to decide on what missions to do because he had the full 8 leaders lol.

He did beat me on his first game but I was worn down because the game was so long (but I did not roll over!!!) NEVAR!


25 minutes to plan his missions? That's just plain obnoxious. He deserves the 1000 year death of being digested in a Sarlaac Pit.
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David Umstattd
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astroglide wrote:
Empire, and it's not even close. They're straightforward. Rebel strategy, and perception of success, is opaque.


I've thought the opposite is true. For the empire its easy to get distracted by mission cards and building huge armies and never find the base (which is just unfun.) For the rebels your objectives are very clear as you literally have objective cards that tell you what you should be trying to do.
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James Cheng
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David Umstattd wrote:
astroglide wrote:
Empire, and it's not even close. They're straightforward. Rebel strategy, and perception of success, is opaque.


I've thought the opposite is true. For the empire its easy to get distracted by mission cards and building huge armies and never find the base (which is just unfun.) For the rebels your objectives are very clear as you literally have objective cards that tell you what you should be trying to do.


At the same time, "running" a Empire could be just as fulfilling. Subjugating systems, capturing rebel scum, crushing their units... The empire can feel good about doing all this. The search is secondary for a newbie at the beginning.

As a Rebel's first game, it's hard to see the opportunity to achieve some of the combat objective, and as a newbie, they are just as easy to be distracted by mission cards as well. And the diplomatic mission, while doable, might be out of your reach sometimes.

At least that's how I feel.

--

Speaking on my own experience, you can really feel desperate as the rebel in your early game. You are getting crushed while achieve little. Only with time you see how you would be able to hinder the Empire and go for objectives.

On the other hand, as I got more experience with Rebel, I find it pretty hard to play Empire in my first few time as Empire because I sort of know how the Rebel would approach and I've tried to cover everything. I feel exhausted as I feel like the Rebel could strike at me anytime (with mission or clever maneuvers)
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Justin
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David Umstattd wrote:
I've thought the opposite is true. For the empire its easy to get distracted by mission cards and building huge armies and never find the base (which is just unfun.) For the rebels your objectives are very clear as you literally have objective cards that tell you what you should be trying to do.

If you were playing blind, and didn't read the basic strategy tips in the rules, sure. I always tell people to focus primarily on area activations.
 
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James Cheng
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astroglide wrote:
David Umstattd wrote:
I've thought the opposite is true. For the empire its easy to get distracted by mission cards and building huge armies and never find the base (which is just unfun.) For the rebels your objectives are very clear as you literally have objective cards that tell you what you should be trying to do.

If you were playing blind, and didn't read the basic strategy tips in the rules, sure. I always tell people to focus primarily on area activations.


Your post just remind me about the aspect of teaching the game. It's much easier to teach a Empire newbie as they don't have that much secrecy while the Rebel's objective are hidden mostly.
 
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Sebastiaan Ringoot
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I don't understand why anyone answers Empire.


If you are Empire there are two main things to do:
- Find and attack the rebel base : almoast impossible to do this correctly on your first play
- Counter rebel objectives. You can not do this if you don't know the objective cards.


So the empire player will not be able to attack the rebel base fast and/or hard enough, and the rebel player will have a real easy time scoring objectives, because the empire has no clue what is comming.

One easy example is the I objective that requires all populous systems in one region to have rebel loyalty. There's two regions with only two systems.
An experienced empire player will catch this the moment the rebel player does diplomacy there early, usually those planets are not interesting to diplo-over early.
The empire can counter it by doing it's own diplomacy there, or by dropping off troops and going for the early mom mothma capture.
If you're new to the game, the rebels score this objective unopposed. This goes for almoast all objectives to be honest.

When I play against a lesser experienced empire player, I go over all objectives at the start of the game, I lay them out and explain how the interfere with game mechanics. If you don't, it's like taking candy from a baby.


A player first time playing this game, as the empire, is clueless. He can have fun and enjoy the thematic aspect of the game. But winning as the empire in a first playthrough is really a matter of getting lucky.


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