Fans of George Lucas' space epic are currently inundated with new content. Movies, series, books, comics, games or merchandise are published in an almost exhaustively short time sequence. It goes without saying that board players can also access countless titles from the Star Wars universe to lead their favorite heroes into space and ground battles. Fantasy Flight Games recognized the enormous market potential of these fan services a long time ago and never tires of using the Star Wars franchise accordingly. Fortunately, the individual Star Wars board games play so differently that fans can confidently choose a series of games in which they will invest their money in the long term: the purchase of expansions is an integral part of the marketing strategy. Nonetheless, the majority of the titles can convince in terms of play. Because countless new releases are also finding their way onto the game market this year, we have summarized the best Star Wars board games of 2018 in the following article.
Star Wars board games 2018: novelties for fans
The strategic board game Star Wars - Legion by Fantasy Flight Games reveals enormous potential for players to satisfy their passion for collecting. The intensive 2-player miniatures game appeared in the German version of Asmodee in March 2018 and has been able to steadily increase the fan base since then. Regular new releases provide players with troops and vehicles and thus expand their tactical options.
Star Wars - Legion is set at the time of the Civil War. The Empire is increasing its control of the galaxy through a relentless reign of terror. Nobody dares to openly stand in the way of the mighty Emperor Palpatine and his executioner, the Dark Lord of the Sith, Darth Vader. The resistance of the rebel alliance, which tries to weaken the war machine of the empire through guerrilla tactical maneuvers, is forming in secret. Iconic villains and heroes should not be missing in Star Wars: Legion either - even if vulgar combat troops are the focus of the strategic Star Wars board game. The basic game already shows where the journey is going: with Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, two of the most popular characters are ready to serve as commanders. Depending on the faction chosen, players plunge into strategically dense 2-player battles with the disciplined troops of the empire or the brave soldiers of the rebel alliance.
The aim of the game is simple: either the opponent's units are completely eliminated or the player who has managed to get the most victory markers after six rounds wins. To give the battles tactical depth, commanders use two of four possible actions during their active phases, consisting of move, attack, aim or evade - each action with the exception of movement can only be performed once per turn. The highlight: Units receive orders (represented by command cards) from their assigned command unit, which must be within range. With this fine rule tweak, players can develop an individual game strategy by putting together their combat troops including the selected command character, which can be adapted over time by purchasing miniature expansions. This is not only nice for collectors, it also changes the gaming experience with almost every add-on. Although you can have a lot of fun with the content of the base game for Star Wars: Legion, the concept is designed to constantly expand your collection of miniatures. Although it is not absolutely necessary to buy expansions, game systems of this type live to a large extent from the improvements that are introduced by the game publishers over the course of the life cycle of strategic board games such as Star Wars: Legion.
Every board player who is toying with the purchase of Star Wars: Legion should definitely consider the high cost factor. With purchase costs of around 75 euros for the basic equipment alone, the strategic board game from Asmodee is not a bargain, but it is also not grossly overpriced if you use comparable miniature games as a benchmark. If you can bring yourself to buy Star Wars: Legion, you will get one of the best Star Wars board games of 2018.
Fantasy Flight Games and Asmodee provide replenishment - and thus additional strategic options - shortly after the release of the basic game. So far, the following have been processed for Star Wars: Legion Extensions*:
- Star Wars: Legion - AT-ST
- Star Wars: Legion - T47 air glider
- Star Wars: Legion AT-RT
- Star Wars: Legion - Rebel Forces
- Star Wars: Legion - Stormtroopers
- Star Wars: Legion - 74 Z jet carriage
- Star Wars: Legion - Snow Troops
- Star Wars: Legion - Fleet Forces
- Star Wars: Legion - Rebel Commandos
- Star Wars: Legion - General Veers
- Star Wars: Legion - Leia Organa
- Star Wars: Legion - Han Solo
The number of mini-expansions released so far is considerable. In addition, the prospects for 2018 are good. The bounty hunter Boba Fett is firmly established as a new release, not only adding a detailed, paintable miniature model to the game with the Boba Fett Operative Expansion, but also integrating tactical alternatives into the existing system through unique command skills. If, on the other hand, you prefer to order additional ground troops into the enemy blaster fire, you can rely on the detection troops unit expansion for the empire. Relentless attacks, on the other hand, are launched by the imperial E-Web Blaster team. Rebel players are given command of the 1.4 FD laser gun and attack enemy troops from afar. The extensions will be available in German and English and are expected to be available in the 3rd quarter of 2018.
Rise of the Empire: Expansion for Star Wars Rebellion
With Star Wars: Rebellion Fantasy Flight Games and Asmodee, as German localization partners, brought a terrific strategic board game onto the market that continues to delight fans today. Because the 2-player games wear out a little over time, even among die-hard fans, an expansion now provides new motivation. Star Wars: Rebellion - Rise of the Empire Thematically starts with the early development of the legendary super weapon of the Empire, the Death Star. After the destruction of the Old Republic, the Galactic Empire continues its reign of terror.
To make matters worse, rumors of the development of a super weapon are making the rounds in the intergalactic cantinas. Anyone who has already seen the film Rogue One, the first cinematic release from the Star Wars series, already knows the background story of the expansion Rise of the Empire in detail. It goes without saying that the new heroes and villains should not be missing on the board. And so strategists are now using the fighting skills of characters like Chirrut Imwe, Jyn Erso or the bad guy director Krennic. And because even Jabba the Hutt finds its way onto the field in its impressive physical presence, fans of the base game Star Wars: Rebellion should plan to purchase the Rise of the Empire expansion in 2018.
The respective game goals of the factions result directly from the history of the spin-off Rogue One. While rebel supporters attempt to steal the Death Star plans from the Imperial base, Imperial soldiers must prevent just that. In total, players can access 8 leaders, 36 new miniatures and 100 playing cards to experience their personal version of Rogue One on the board game table. Expert tactic cards add a new mechanic to dynamic battles, which provides exciting effects. The expansion for Star Wars: Rebellion is definitely a buy recommendation for fans and without a doubt one of the best Star Wars board games of 2018.
X-Wing 2.0: New edition of exciting dog fights
Relatively surprisingly, Fantasy Flight Games announced the revised version of the miniature game Star Wars: X-Wing in May. The basic idea remains the same: two players duel with individual spaceship exhibitions in exciting - and short - dog fights. X-Wing 2.0 is therefore to be seen as an optimization of the previous set of rules. After the live stream, FFG presented detailed information on the individual improvements, in particular on Movements, Fight, Promotions and Upgrades.
The additional app support should benefit the planned modern look of version 2.0 of the X-Wing miniature game in terms of fluid playability - and also take organized play to the next level. Also known is the fact that the expansion Saw's Renegades, which appears for the original version of Star Wars: X-Wing, contains all the game material to be seamlessly integrated into version 2.0.
For all other ships, however, the following applies: if you want to continue to use the spaceships of the three factions that you have collected over the years, you need so-called conversion sets to play X-Wing 2.0, which contain tons of compatible game material in the form of cards, markers or maneuver wheels. Fans who invested their money in the original version were not happy about this fact, but the solution with the conversion sets seems to be a good middle ground that avoids completely new acquisitions for existing players.
The announcement of the expansion for the current Star Wars spin-off A Star Wars Story: Solo is really new. Lando's Millennium Falcon, undisputedly the fastest ship in the galaxy, will find a way into the game.
The improvements that X-Wing 2.0 is aiming for do not just relate to rule adjustments, but to an intensification of the entire gaming experience. The individual factions should be more clearly distinguished from one another and power should play the role it deserves. X-Wing 2.0 brings power abilities into the course of the game, which should give power-sensitive pilots a noticeable combat advantage. Iconic characters like Darth Vader in his Tie-Advanced or Lkue Skywalker in his X-wing are significantly upgraded. So that power users do not completely destroy the balance of the game, power in X-Wing 2.0 is a finite resource. Power skills should therefore be used carefully and at strategically right moments. It is obvious that this will also result in new tactics.
Star Wars board games 2018: novelties along the films
The titles mentioned are only three of the recommended Star Wars board games for the game year 2018. Players of basic versions such as Star Wars: Imperial Assault, Star Wars: Destiny or Star Wars: Armada can also enjoy new content. Fans of classic pen & paper concepts can also look forward to completely new stories and characters. Most of the expansions to be released in 2018 focus on background stories, characters or vehicles from the most recent cinematic implementations. Fans of Star Wars: Imperial Assault can look forward to the expansion Tyrants of Lothal, in which Vice Admiral Thrawn, known to younger Star Wars fans especially from the Star Wars: Rebels series, has his big appearance.
The double volume should also be of particular interest to Star Wars collectors Star Wars: The Roleplaying Games 30th Anniversary Edition .
Also this year there is a lot to discover about Star Wars in the known and unknown shopping galaxies. In any case, it is worthwhile for fans to keep an eye on the new announcements.
How popular Star Wars board games and role-playing games are, is shown by the fact that re-prints are already planned for many expansions - or the expansions are already being reprinted. The empty warehouses of online retailers should therefore soon be a thing of the past.
One thing will be clear for 2018: because every expansion to the big Star Wars games will also appear in German, Asmodee, as a localization partner of Fantasy Flight Games, is expanding its supremacy in the galaxy.
Tell us - and other fans - in the comments:
Which acquisitions from the Star Wars board game area do you have planned? Which Star Wars board games would you recommend to experienced strategists, especially to newcomers?