You’ve seen the game online. Maybe you’ve been to your friendly local gaming store and seen a group playing. Or a friend of yours has recommended it to you and you’ve used their collection. Or you’ve wondered onto my Instagram and seen the awesome repaints! However it happened you have now taken your first step into a larger world
The cartoon above has been around nearly as long as the game itself. There is a reason you still see it pop up though, because it’s absolutely spot on! A lot of people can relate to how quickly it escalates (myself included) and it can be a real drain on resources. What I’ll try to do here is give a breakdown of what a beginner should buy.
Three things to keep in mind:
- The core set has Rebel and Imperial ships so it makes sense to pick at least one up for these factions. It comes with dice, tokens and range rulers so you have everything you need to start playing. If you’re keen on trying one of the other factions first though we get into a grey area(which I talk about further down).
- Budget. Things are tight for a lot of people but if you want to get involved you will need to spend some cash money. I’ll try to keep it down but you need enough ships to make a full squad.
- I will not be making a shopping list for the current meta. The ships picked may fall in line with that but that’s just coincidence. They will be varied and hopefully fun to use!
From the blazingly fast A-wing to the iconic Millennium Falcon, the Rebel Alliance fielded a great number of starships during the interstellar battles of the Galactic Civil War.
Lets start with Rebels as they are the faction I fly!
In the the core set you get one X-Wing, a strong start! 4 hull and 2 shields means they won’t get one-shotted and 3 attack means they can take care of themselves. In the core set you get Luke Skywalker (the best X-Wing pilot). However, in the expansion you get Wedge Antilles (my favourite X-Wing pilot) so you’re covering your bases. The ship has a load of other pilots too so there are lots of options; whether it’s Wedge and Luke with some torpedoes*, Garven who is a big component of current meta lists at the moment, or some Blue Squadron Escorts. Never underestimate the Blue Squadron!
*Plasma Torpedoes on Wedge, trust me.
Next up is the B-Wing which in Second Edition has opening S-Foils, a rotating cockpit and (!) the ability to spin on its peg. Take a bow FFG, you nailed this model as aside from look awesome it can also be folded away easily. The amount of old B-Wings with snapped cannons is…..well it’s high.
When it comes to pilots wise Ten Numb and Braylen Stramm are the standouts in this expansion. They are both I4 and have strong abilities centred around stress. In time you’ll work out which one you prefer, but there is not a wrong answer.
The Hotshots and Aces released early this year contains a new I5 B-Wing pilot (Gina Moonsong) along with a configuration card, stabilised S-foils. You do not need this when starting out as it’s complexity that is not needed. And, I don’t rate Moonsong (lack of action economy) but that might just be me.
Modified YT-1300 Freighter
Lastly for Rebels we have the YT-1300. It’s a large base ship with a double turret (or bow tie) primary weapon. This gives some different options and flying styles compared to the B and X that are small base with front facing single arc primary weapons.
No one really goes near the I1 pilot, all the attention is centred on Lando and Han who are both great choices. Which one you pick depends on whether you’re interested in getting more actions (Lando) or just rolling more dice (Han). Either are good options and you can upgrade them as much or as little as you like.
Again the Hotshots and Aces pack has Leia Organa as a pilot and she is a good alternative to Lando as there is only a point between them.
BTL-A4 Y-Wing – If you want an even more classic feel to your first squad then a Y-Wing would be perfect. It can bomb, can use a turret and is cheap. I’ll talk more about this and other rebel ships soon.
Update: We now have the new Phoenix Cell Squadron Pack which comes with a B-Wing and two A-Wings. It gives us Hera in the B-Wing which no one uses but it gets you the generics. What is really good is the number of really good A-Wing pilots this pack brings to the game. Hera, Ahsoka and baby Wedge are all excellent and there are other welcome pilots too. If you can find it, definitely grab it.
There we go, that’s what I think a beginner should buy for the Rebel faction. Let me know in the comments if there is anything else about these ships you’d like to know.
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Until next time, pilots!