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RookieOne

Which FFG game to jump to next, IA or Armada?

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I know this is an X-wing forum, but as I currently play X-wing and am looking to start into either Imperial Assault or Armada I felt looking to my fellow X-wing players in case they've played some of both for some advice. I also didn't want to post twice on either choices forum!

 

I love the idea of either, I just wasn't sure about armada as I didn't want two games that are similar (it also seems fractionally a bit more pricey or I could be misreading that). Any thoughts on either? Appreciate the help and apologies for being so vague!

 

Many thanks

Rookieone

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I play all 3.  Love all 3.   Currently I THINK Imperial Assault might be your best bet.  

 

Both games are amazing.  Armada JUST launched and it is probably my ultra-favorite game right now!   But I don't know if that feeling will fade in time.  I feel like I've just started dating a Stripper named Armada.  She's fun, exciting, beautiful, and all that jazz... but I don't know for sure how long it will last.  (But it'll probably last awhile because Armada does totally rock...  like wow!)

 

  But Imperial Assault is awesome too.... and I felt similar when it first launched.   There are three main things that give it the edge in my opinion:

  • Setting: Armada is awfully similar to X-Wing (In that they are both in space, both have X-Wings, TIEs, etc), while Imperial Assault is ground based and has a "feeling" that is more different.  It'll feel like you are branching out more.  
  • 2 Modes of play: Imperial Assault can play 5 players in Campaign, or it can play 2 player duels with it's "Skirmish" system.   Skirmish is a point-based army dueling type battle, similar to X-Wing, Armada, etc.   So you can play a skirmish for a quick session, or run a campaign for the long-haul.  And the campaign could in theory support an AI type system for possible solo play someday.  
  • The sheer amount of stuff it comes with: Granted Armada comes with alot of squadrons.... but Imperial Assault comes with a TON of miniatures.   It also comes with placeholder cardboard chits, which can be used in substitue for all of the wave 1 expansions.   So for any non-tournament game, you get almost the entire first wave all in one box.  You have a TON of build options for skirmish, and all the boxes that are out there also comes with Vader and Luke as free "expansions".  Rumor is that someday they won't be packaged with it.  

Imperial Assault is simply the better value in terms of stuff, variety, and methods of play.   But Armada is really really awesome too....  Honestly either will make you smile.  

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I just took the dive into Armada and I'm loving it. It's different enough from X-wing that I really don't feel like I'm playing the same game twice. I also find that FFG has learned some lessons from X-Wing and it really shows in the way you track damage, defend against attacks, and perform commands. Specifically, there are a lot less tokens flying about on the board. The ship bases feel much sturdier too.

 

I can't really speak to Imperial Assault, but as an X-wing player I can definitely recommend starting Armada.

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Armada is different enough to justify it even if you play X-Wing. What makes me chose Imperial Assault over Armada is the different number of players. If we are two, we can play X-Wing or Imperial Assault skirmish(still haven't tried this mode though, I prefer X-Wing), if we are up to 5, Imperial Assault is still a possibility. Thematically speaking, I prefer to have 1 ground and 1 space game over 2 space.

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Thanks for the advice so far. I would say was leaning closer to IA rather than armada. Does that mean you have to have 5 people to play the campaign or can you do it with two? Also, besides the model, is there another good reason for picking up any of the wave one expansions if they come in the box crabbok?

 

Dust was a consideration, but my playing group of buddies are primarily star wars fans so it can be easier to reel them in for a game!

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Personally not a big fan of IA, it doesn't feel like a shooting based game should, no cover or stuff!its just a reskin with improvements of descent which does suit the mechanics.

Haven't played Armada but its a little too close to XWMG to be worth it. Worth noting based on your access to players having 2 minis and 3 SW franchise games may make people reluctant to play all three all the time and you'll end up having a minis or SW night and then have to wait an age for the next game and all three of these games beg frequent play.

What other genres do you like? Give us an idea of the people you play with, but my advice try very different things until you get a taste.

Just saw your last post

Edited by Lilikin

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You can play the campaign with only 2 players, although I would recommend just doing some skirmish and keeping the novelty of the campaign for those times when you can get 3+ players.

As for the expensions boxes, they all come with more Command cards for the skirmish, and a side mission for the campaign, a new reward with the rebels expension and a new Agenda pack for the villains.

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You can play the campaign with only 2 players, although I would recommend just doing some skirmish and keeping the novelty of the campaign for those times when you can get 3+ players.

As for the expensions boxes, they all come with more Command cards for the skirmish, and a side mission for the campaign, a new reward with the rebels expension and a new Agenda pack for the villains.

IA and Descent suck on campaign if you have 2 players IMO or not the same players turning up also.

Skirmish can be good

Edited by Lilikin

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Armada looks great.  But to me, Star Wars has always been about Luke flying an X-Wing down the Death Star trench, Han weaving through the asteroids with a flight of TIEs in hot pursuit, Lando diving through a swarm of TIEs and Interceptors.  It's never really been about giant ships trading volleys with each other.  That's Star Trek's realm.  And while the pieces look fantastic and the gameplay seems solid, I just don't see Armada capturing my imagination -- or my wallet -- the way X-Wing has.

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You can play the campaign with only 2 players, although I would recommend just doing some skirmish and keeping the novelty of the campaign for those times when you can get 3+ players.

As for the expensions boxes, they all come with more Command cards for the skirmish, and a side mission for the campaign, a new reward with the rebels expension and a new Agenda pack for the villains.

IA and Descent suck on campaign if you have 2 players IMO or not the same players turning up also.

Skirmish can be good

That's why I said I would favor the skirmish mode with only 2 players. Not even sure I would recommend it with 3. For my part, I try to form a full group for the campaign, I have enough games at home for when we're less or more than that.

You are right pointing out that for the campaign, you're better to always keep the same group, since there is a story and player evolution.

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Sorry, I come off as too aggressive, I was agreeing

I never played Descent so I can't tell, but I would also not bother with the campaign with only another player.

And you didn't sound too aggressive, I was blaming my english for not being clear. :P

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I've watched several games of Imperial Assault and have no desire to pick it up, but maybe that's because it doesn't involve starfighters.  It also plays less tactically in my opinion.  I wish IA were more like Bolt Action or some of the other military games, where you have terrain and move by inches and such.  Then you could have awesome battles with heavy vehicles and stuff.  Instead, it seems cramped, and more like a game of Star Wars dungeons and dragons without the role-playing.  I dunno, just not for me I guess, but a lot of people I know like it.

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After playing both games over the weekend I kinda have to rate Assault a little bit more then Armada as a stepping stone from X-wing, while I still love X-wing the most Assault can be played with more people some might just say its re-skinned Descent but I don't already own Descent so that's not a problem I'm fine with the shooting mechanics as starwars blasters tend to be clumsy and unpredictable and cover mechanics would just bog the game down.

 

My issues with Armada was that it seemed more bland then X-wing the action cup reveal wasn't as exciting I didn't really like the way the fighter squads work moving or shooting was kinda annoying and it seemed without fail that any time you wanted to put the maneuver tool down there would all-ways be at least three or four fighters in the way. Some of the components seemed to be fiddly, I'm not sold on the shield table bases fixing them to the base leads to bumping models around as you try to spin the shield dials down. These issues might get better the more games we play though.

 

I still like both games but X-wing is my jam.

Edited by Dodt

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Thanks for the advice so far. I would say was leaning closer to IA rather than armada. Does that mean you have to have 5 people to play the campaign or can you do it with two? Also, besides the model, is there another good reason for picking up any of the wave one expansions if they come in the box crabbok?

 

Dust was a consideration, but my playing group of buddies are primarily star wars fans so it can be easier to reel them in for a game!

The reason for the expansions is two-fold.  The minis, and the cards.  Minis are good if you want like, 3 rebel trooper squads (You only get one squad in the base set, and it's just cardboard).  Also, for Skirmish Tournaments you now have to actually have the mini, since they are available - so if you ever decided to go to regionals some day, you'd want the minis.  

The cards give some extra options to the campaign also, but they are primarily for skirmish IMO, because you get MORE skirmish stuff than campaign stuff.  

 

  And yes, you can play the campaign with only 2.  

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I know this veers a bit from the OP, but how about FFG's Star Wars LCG? Is anyone here a fan? I come to X-Wing from zero background experience with miniatures or deck building games or RPGs, really just as a Star Wars fan. But one thing I love about X-Wing is the infinite variety of the list building. Seems like the LCG might be up my alley.

Recommended?

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Dobt

They would bog it down but that's what's great about XWing the mechanics suit the game. Descent is the same. IA they just don't its a lazy reskin was my point.

Edited by Lilikin

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Thanks for bringing this up, I have been waffling between the two as well.

 

Never having played Descent, the system wouldn't feel stale, I assume...what are the downsides to the system?

 

I do have to admit to wanting to play Ginormous Galactic War! and use them all in combination with Star Wars Risk....but that's another topic entirely.

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Descent 2ed needs a few add ons would be my advice but there are plenty and this is also true with the other games. There is no skirmish but I am really hoping for rules put soon, if you are into that. They have tweeked it slightly in IA for the better but it doesn't feel like a shooter and most of the changes can be implemented in Descent and suit a might and magic based game with positioning rather than shooting and cover which they would have to have redesigned the whole thing to get to work. Case in point the imperial gun placement that swivels on a point......

Basic downsides, wants a campaign (like IA) and that can be hard to get if you have a flakey group especially with the current million games releasing a week with 5 adults there is rarely a week with no new games arriving at someones home.

Descent also has two solo/coop mini campaigns for very cheap its a winner if you have a really evil overlord like me.

Edited by Lilikin

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Thanks for bringing this up, I have been waffling between the two as well.

Never having played Descent, the system wouldn't feel stale, I assume...what are the downsides to the system?

I do have to admit to wanting to play Ginormous Galactic War! and use them all in combination with Star Wars Risk....but that's another topic entirely.

My friend has IA and three of us have a three way IA skirmish and XWing campaign planned when more scum gets released for IA

Armada doesn't suit its too big.

Edited by Lilikin

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I play all 3.  Love all 3.   Currently I THINK Imperial Assault might be your best bet.  

 

Both games are amazing.  Armada JUST launched and it is probably my ultra-favorite game right now!   But I don't know if that feeling will fade in time.  I feel like I've just started dating a Stripper named Armada.  She's fun, exciting, beautiful, and all that jazz... but I don't know for sure how long it will last.  (But it'll probably last awhile because Armada does totally rock...  like wow!)

 

  But Imperial Assault is awesome too.... and I felt similar when it first launched.   There are three main things that give it the edge in my opinion:

  • Setting: Armada is awfully similar to X-Wing (In that they are both in space, both have X-Wings, TIEs, etc), while Imperial Assault is ground based and has a "feeling" that is more different.  It'll feel like you are branching out more.  
  • 2 Modes of play: Imperial Assault can play 5 players in Campaign, or it can play 2 player duels with it's "Skirmish" system.   Skirmish is a point-based army dueling type battle, similar to X-Wing, Armada, etc.   So you can play a skirmish for a quick session, or run a campaign for the long-haul.  And the campaign could in theory support an AI type system for possible solo play someday.  
  • The sheer amount of stuff it comes with: Granted Armada comes with alot of squadrons.... but Imperial Assault comes with a TON of miniatures.   It also comes with placeholder cardboard chits, which can be used in substitue for all of the wave 1 expansions.   So for any non-tournament game, you get almost the entire first wave all in one box.  You have a TON of build options for skirmish, and all the boxes that are out there also comes with Vader and Luke as free "expansions".  Rumor is that someday they won't be packaged with it.  
Imperial Assault is simply the better value in terms of stuff, variety, and methods of play.   But Armada is really really awesome too....  Honestly either will make you smile.

Well I think you sold me on picking up a copy at some point.

Having Descent and most of its expansions caused me to have second thoughts on it

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