In what is either the final hurrah for Fantasy Flight’s stewardship of X-Wing or Atomic Mass Games’ inaugural release, three new expansions are hitting the shelves soon. None of these are new ships, but they’re new pilots and some amazing new paint schemes for existing ships.
While Asmodee is asking for an MSRP of $49.95, that seemed a touch high for me. Get these bad boys through Kingwood Hobbies, and they’re only $39.95.
Featuring exciting options for some of the most iconic ships of the Star Wars saga, these Squadron Packs for the Rebel Alliance, Galactic Empire and Scum and Villainy factions offer new, thematic pilots and upgrades for both standard and Epic play! Each Squadron Pack is the perfect starting point for collecting a faction and is packed with new pilots and upgrades designed to work together to form the tactical core of a squadron. In addition to unique new paint schemes for these ships, each of these releases feature a strong theme to help tell a narrative on the tabletop. As featured in Star Wars: Rebels, The Phoenix Cell Squadron Pack contains the celebrated Rebel heroes of Phoenix Squadron, while the Skystrike Academy Squadron Pack features the expert Imperial pilots seen on the other side of the conflict. For the Scum and Villainy faction, the Fugitives and Collaborators Squadron Pack introduces interesting new options, new pilots, and a few surprises. Read on for more information on what to expect in these expansions!
Under the leadership of Commander Jun Sato, Phoenix Squadron is an elite group of pilots who often assist the Ghost team on their missions. At the helm of Phoenix Squadron is Phoenix Leader, Hera Syndulla . The infamously skilled pilot of the Ghost takes the controls of a more-nimble craft in this expansion and is the first RZ-1 A-wing pilot to boast an Initiative value of 6! Her pilot ability represents her guidance and leadership and is flexible enough to help her fit into any squad. Players willing to take on a little stress to more readily keep their armaments trained on the enemy will be interested upgrading their A-wings with some Vectored Cannons . This interesting new upgrade opens up new tactics with your RZ-1 A-wings and presents opportunities to keep your attack dice rolling while performing daring fly-by maneuvers.
Phoenix Squadron is often forced to be resourceful to get the better of the Imperials, and the B-wing included in this expansion is no exception. Painted in the distinct color scheme of the B6 Blade Wing Prototype, this miniature represents the experimental craft created as part of the Shantipole Project. The design of the prototype was so effective that it would later serve as the blueprint for the ubiquitous A/SF-01 B-wing. The experimental weaponry of the B6 Blade Wing Prototype sets it apart from its progeny by combining the power of four lasers together into a single, potent beam. While this upgrade is intended for Epic play, the expansion also includes a version of the title designed for standard play we will show off along with much more in a future preview.
The hardened recruits of Skystrike Academy are the elite test pilots of the Galactic Empire. These promising individuals undergo ruthless training, testing some of the Empire’s most potent and experimental starfighters. At the head of Skystrike Academy is Commander Vult Skerris , a notorious pilot known for his skill and cunning. His pilot ability allows you to delay his action until after all ships have moved, giving you perfect information to select the most effective action before engaging.
As leader of Admiral Thrawn’s TIE Defender initiative, Vult Skerris is entrusted with the testing and development of the experimental TIE/D Defender Elite prototype. This new variant boasts increased maneuverability and advanced fire control systems for what is an already effective platform. Expanding their research, the Skystrike Academy employs a number of modifications in their testing that extend to other starfighter chassis as well. One example being the modification of TIE/in Interceptors with more Sensitive Controls to further test the limits of both their pilot’s abilities and the craft itself. Regardless of the implementation, the testing of new technology by the Skystrike Academy presents a very real threat that the Rebel Alliance cannot leave unanswered.
As the Rebel Alliance and Galactic Empire vie for position in a sweeping war across the stars, the opportunists, criminals, and smugglers of the galaxy operate effectively from the shadows, playing sides against one another to increase their profit. Cutthroat tactics are the norm in the Outer Rim, and sometimes the demise of a wingman just makes for a bigger cut for the survivors. Flying under the sensors is a known tactic for smugglers and outlaws and is perfectly utilized in times of war through a maneuver known as the Tierfon Belly Run , which brings pilots like Padric perilously close to asteroids to shield their approach. As this is a tactic first made famous by Y-wing pilots of the Rebel Alliance you will be pleased to know this upgrade is also included in the Phoenix Cell Squadron Pack.
Not all of the unaffiliated have such an unscrupulous outlook, and some are simply trying to find a place in a tumultuous time of war. Such is the case of Kanan Jarrus , a Jedi padawan seeking refuge after the events of Order 66. This depiction of Kanan represents his time in hiding before his introduction to Hera Syndulla and becoming a crew member of the Ghost. Being on the run, Kanan uses the Force to predict and distract the enemy, increasing the survivability of himself and his wing mates. It should be noted this version of Kanan introduces a new light-side Force user to the limited options available in the Scum and Villainy faction, opening up a number of new tactics and synergies.