Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Unboxing Imperial Assault

During the last months I was lurking around Fantasy Flight Games's (FFG) Star Wars miniature game 'Imperial Assault'. It's more or less a tabletop board game hybrid covering small rebel operations against the Galactic Empire. Thus there are up to four players controlling heroes of the Rebel Alliance and one player leading the missions as a kind of game master and playing the Empire as well. Actually the game is designed to play campaigns of ten to fifteen missions but it has a two player skirmish variant as well.

Anyway after months of pondering I decided to invest in the game and actually wanted to order the German version which was released in late August. By mistake I ordered the English version instead but decided to hold it and rely on my humble knowledge of English. With around 80 € the game isn't cheap at all but you receive a thick and heavy box for your money:
As usual for FFG the cover art is top notch. Some rebels fighting stormtroopers and Darth Vader in person overwatching the battlescene. Excellent stuff so far. After opening the box I discovered the full content. It's really filled to the brim:
Of course there's some advertising material included but most impressive is the pure extent of the game material:

  • Four rulebooklets
  • 6 hero character sheets
  • 39 deployment cards
  • 10 story mission cards
  • 14 side mission cards
  • 18 agenda cards
  • 5 key word reference cards
  • 54 heroe class cards
  • 27 imperial class cards
  • 36 item cards
  • 12 supply cards
  • 18 reward cards
  • 42 command cards
  • 12 condition cards
  • 1 initiative token
  • 45 damage tokens
  • 2 skirmish mission cards
  • 8 terminal tokens
  • 8 crate tokens
  • 15 condition tokens
  • 35 strain tokens
  • 20 mission tokens
  • 1 entrance token
  • 4 activation tokens
  • 20 ID tokens and 60 corresponding stickers
  • 12 ally and villain tokens
  • 1 threat and round dial
  • 4 doors
  • 59 map tiles
  • 11 special dice
  • 33 more or less human sized miniatures
  • 1 AT-ST walker kit
  • Darth Vader villain pack (miniature, cards, rules)
  • Luke Skywalker ally pack (miniature, cards, rules)

Thus at least you get a lot of bang for the buck. Firstly the rulebooks appear directly below the advertising stuff:
They are arranged very usefully. First a book with the core rules which explaines the major mechanics of the game by means of a tutorial mission. Although it's written very well I recommend to read the rules with the certain gaming board nearby. Some explanations get much clearer by relating them to the needed material (e. g. dice, hero sheets etc.). Afterwards you should play a mission or two with a couple of friends to make the rules clear. But be aware that the hero sheets, their weapons and some other cards might bear information you haven't read so far. Either ignore those things or have the Reference Guide at hand to look them up.

Next the board tiles will appear:
The come in sheets hosting floor tiles and counters alike. All are of rather strong cardboard and of really high printing standard. Shrewdly they're printed on either side and so they're bearing different terrain on either side. Excellent idea that virtually doubles the number of terrain tiles.

Finally all the other components appear:
All the cards are neatly sorted and parcelled in zipper bags. Very clever and actually vital since on first glance you have no idea which card is needed for what purpose. But later with the rulebook and some experience that's no problem at all. However all the components are of really good quality. The card consist of the same kind of laminated cardboard material as the X-Wing cards do. Feels very worthy and durable. But I'm considering to get some card sleeves to protect them anyway.
Some examples of the high quality game components.
Last but definitely not least for the miniatures. Centrepiece are of course the six heroes. Those are very nicely sculpted figures that have a good casting quality:
The material is kind of medium hard plastic. It seems to be slightly flexibel and rather unbreakable. Actually an excellent compination for game piece that are used by players who may care less for the miniatures than we wargamers and painters do.We'll see how they take on primer and colours but all the reports I read so far were pretty positive.

Besides those six rebel figures there are a bunch of enemies put into the box:
The casting material seems pretty much the same but they are of a neutral grey colour. Altogether there are:
  • 9 Stormtroopers
  • 6 Heros
  • 4 Royal Guards
  • 4 Trandoshans
  • 3 Imperial Officers
  • 3 Drones
  • 2 Nexu
  • 2 E-Web-Engineers
  • 1 AT-ST Walker
In addition the box holds Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader as ally respectively villain for campaign play. The pictures of those turned out to bad to present them here. Just have a look at FFG's page to get an idea of them: Here.

I'm really looking forward to start painting those chaps. Spontaneously I prepared the stormtroopers since they look rather easy to paintbut we'll see how long it takes. After all this project has to queue behind our game for Crisis

Anyway on Sunday we had our first two games and I had the pleasure to represent the forces of the Galactic Empire. Playful Mrs Monty and our friends Nick and Chrissy tried to support the villainous insurgents of the so called Rebel Alliance. But at least during the first campaign mission the force endorsed me and my loyal subjects defeated the saboteurs:
After having read the rules for a second time I discovered some minor mistakes we made but altogether FFG delivers a very nice set of rules. They seem to be working really well and fast but deliver a lot of possible combinations of abilities, equipment and partly luck. As some other FFG games Imperial Assault employs a set of special dice which differentiate weapons, skills tests and abilities even more. Well done! To me it looks like a game that can delight board gamers and wargamers alike. An excellent link between Star Wars fans on either side of gaming. Thus I'm keen on starting a campaign soon. We'll see when our diary allows us to do so...

If you're interested in how the figures look painted then have a look at Agis Neugebauer's page. He did an awesome job on some of them: Here.


  1. Would like this but.........it's a bit pricey for extras and I would have to paint a lot of white too but a good set all the same.

    1. Extras can become problematic but at least suitable counters and cards are included. So you don't NEED the miniatures for Han Solo, Chewbakka etc.

    2. But it's all about the NEED, the addiction needs to be fed.......

  2. Just invested in this myself Stefan. I'm looking at using my old wizards of the coast pre-painted Star Wars minis as in suffering a huge painting block at the mo. Great write up.

    1. Many thanks, Carl. I think WotC figures will do very well.

  3. Looks fantastic, I've been thinking about this myself, but have far too much on the go at the moment. Good to hear you had fun with the first outings.

    1. Judging from the games you recently introduced it could be exactly your cup of tea I presume.

  4. With FFG just a 1/2 hour down the road and playing regular games at their Game Center, I've miraculously avoided the temptation of most of their Star Wars games. What a rabbit hole! Great overview of what looks to be a very nice game. I've always been jealous of the games I see at Tactica, but with so many projects I've limited myself to SW Armada for now. Have fun!!

    1. Many thanks. We'll have a bunch of fun I hope. :-)

  5. Looks like you should have lots of fun with this game. cheers

  6. That's a well-packaged and produced game set. The figures look like they could paint up very nicely too.

  7. Great unboxing! I've been sorely tempted by this game for a while now, as a means to try and get my oldest son into gaming (he's a big Star Wars fan).