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mr.thomasschmidt

Armada vs. X-Wing

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Hi. I have a question for those who have played both games.

I have been playing X-Wing casually and ended up selling my collection. A few years later I'm about to get back in. But I also like the idea of the big ship combat from Armada.

I think it will be too expensive to dig into both games. Even as a casual player there's ships you just "need". Either for balance or for nostalgia ?

I don't think you get the "big slow ship battle feel" with x-wing even with the epic ships. Correct?

But do you come close to the dogfight feel from x-wing when using the squadrons in Armada?

It seems hard to choose between these two games as a casual player. Something tells me I might end up using money on both games anyway but if you get a better al around feeling with Armada I'd rather use the most on that one if that makes sense?

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X-wing is deep into its wave count. This means that there are far more cards, ships, and combos to track. It also means there are far more strange and powerful combinations of cards.

However, x-wing does give you the feel of dogfighting in Star Wars. Just like Armada gives the feel of larger ships blasting at each other with clouds of fighters all around.

FFG has delivered with both games. It's up to you to decide on which you would rather spend your time and your money.

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It comes down to who you have to play against/with. If you have friends that play either, there is your answer. I can play in a X-Wing game at clubs/FLGS 1-3 times a week, both casual and tournament; for Armada it takes coordination and even then it's dicey, we had 4/5 show up for the tournament last week, our first since February. I love both games, there are things I dislike about both, but X-Wing I have more frustration with due to the prevalence of their meta. I have gotten burned out playing X-Wing because they have games that are won in the squad phase and these are usually the meta, but my local X-Wing community is tournament focused vs caual. Armada has metas, but my local community is so small that I have not experienced this yet and even in the larger communities I do not this is an issue. X-Wing is rock-paper-scissors, Armada is more skill based. Both games have FANTASTIC campaign play, Armada is official while X-Wing is fan made, and this is the most fun I have had with both games. Look for used collections in your area or on line forums/facebook groups and get a deal on entry.

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Armada and X-Wing are two different game system, and therefore tend to appeal to different people.

X-Wing is a game of guesswork, educated and logical guesswork, but in the end still guesswork.  You are picking moves blind, then the game itself plays out.  There are obviously still decisions about what ship to shoot, when to trigger abilities etc.  In its basic ruleset, obviously abilities and upgrades change this significantly, oftentimes the game boils down to: "Do I think that ship will go left or right?".  Decisions about order of activation are made at squad construction and are relative to your opponents choices.

Armada has much less hidden information.  Higher level gameplay tends to revolve around a chess concept called forking, namely giving your opponent bad choices and making them pick.  This concept is baked in straight from objective picking to the activation mechanic.  Admittedly, the ability to delay and force your opponent to make choices is one of the opinionated topics in Armada.

 

My advice would be, if at all possible, try both systems out by borrowing components.  Neither game can be judged by the learn to play setup.  Learn the rules, play a few matches with tournament level builds (if tournament play is your goal), then decide which to invest further in.  Even players that are seriously invested will sometimes have to borrow cards and models to make certain builds, so don't let that stop you from playing.

In the end though, only one of the two allows you to fly an Imperial Star Destroyer...

PS, opinion based advanced concept below:
Both systems suffer from a simultaneous power creep and lack of power creep.  Each wave, more and more effort has to be made to make concepts that will shake up the meta, but not trivialize old cards.  The effectiveness of FFG's solutions to this problem is up for debate.  Completely my opinion, but X-Wing may not be far off of a some sort of rotation mechanic like the LCGs.
 

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2 hours ago, ninclouse2000 said:

I play both games casually but have stopped buying x-wing stuff partially because I enjoy armada a bit more but also because the last three waves or so have not been interesting to me.  Armada waves are still exciting and cool.

This is me as well, though I would probably like to play more Epic X-wing, I think that is were I would have the most enjoyment. 

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58 minutes ago, jamie nasmyth said:

This is me as well, though I would probably like to play more Epic X-wing, I think that is were I would have the most enjoyment. 

I have not tried epic x-wing.  I do have the transport and gozanti but have never gotten to use them yet.

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3 hours ago, ninclouse2000 said:

I play both games casually but have stopped buying x-wing stuff partially because I enjoy armada a bit more but also because the last three waves or so have not been interesting to me.  Armada waves are still exciting and cool.

I'll add my voice to this chorus.

 

However, I think if you're going to be casual about it, figure out which things trip your fun triggers. I think the biggest thing there will not be about the games themselves but the communities. Which group of people in your area would you like to spend more time with: the X-Wing players or the Armada players. Understand that those communities will develop over time, but if one of those communities has social problems, whereas the other one doesn't, then it's a good idea to play with the one that doesn't.

 

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6 minutes ago, Mikael Hasselstein said:

I'll add my voice to this chorus.

 

However, I think if you're going to be casual about it, figure out which things trip your fun triggers. I think the biggest thing there will not be about the games themselves but the communities. Which group of people in your area would you like to spend more time with: the X-Wing players or the Armada players. Understand that those communities will develop over time, but if one of those communities has social problems, whereas the other one doesn't, then it's a good idea to play with the one that doesn't.

 

Well that is kind of part of the problem. There's no communities that's interested in either game where I live. It all comes down to what I think looks fun and then try and introduce to one of my friends. Maybe two. This also means that I have to invest in it before they might dip into it as well. And if they don't like it I still want to get enough of a game or both to be able to treat it as a kind of core game to play with my kids in 5 years from now ? That's why I ask before I destroy my wallet

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23 minutes ago, mr.thomasschmidt said:

Well that is kind of part of the problem. There's no communities that's interested in either game where I live. It all comes down to what I think looks fun and then try and introduce to one of my friends. Maybe two. This also means that I have to invest in it before they might dip into it as well. And if they don't like it I still want to get enough of a game or both to be able to treat it as a kind of core game to play with my kids in 5 years from now ? That's why I ask before I destroy my wallet

From your profile, you're in Sarpsborg (Norway)? That's not too far from Oslo, correct?

It would be a good idea for you (if you have not done so) to do some social-media searching. There may be more groups close to you than you know. If not, then social media is also great for building a community. In that case, I would recommend X-Wing, because it will be easier for you to build a community around it.

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32 minutes ago, Mikael Hasselstein said:

From your profile, you're in Sarpsborg (Norway)? That's not too far from Oslo, correct?

It would be a good idea for you (if you have not done so) to do some social-media searching. There may be more groups close to you than you know. If not, then social media is also great for building a community. In that case, I would recommend X-Wing, because it will be easier for you to build a community around it.

Depends on the definition of far ;) I'd have to go 1,5 hour by car to Oslo. That's a pretty long way for a gaming evening and for the price of gasoline and other expenses I could buy half an Armada core sett. I know what you mean though. But I'm not going to built a community. I just don't have that kind of time between work, study and kids. Just wanted to be sure I wasn't buying two games if one game gave you both dogfight and epic. But now I know. Thanks :)

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I am invested heavily in both games, but play mostly casual with friends. X-Wing is faster and a bit cheaper, but definitely more expensive if you get into Epic play.

Armada allows you to play an epic-scale battle in a few hours. Epic games of X-Wing are often a significant time commitment. In the end, you have to weigh whether you want fast games based on reactive play and bluffing , or whether you prefer a more calculated, Chess-like style of miniatures game play.

X-Wing was my first miniatures game, and it's amazing fun every time I play it, but I think Armada is my current favorite if I have a few hours for a game.

Edited by stackeffect

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I prefer Armada just slightly.

I enjoy the fleet composition. Choosing commanders and officers that affect your entire fleet.

Flavour wise it has to be for the capital starships. Only downside is the unpainted squadrons, after playing and painting Warhammer in the late 2000's I really just didn't want to raise a paintbrush to a model again. However, the real stars of the game, the capital starships, do come pre painted.

X-Wing is still great though and has a bigger player base around my area. Models are still fantastic as well.

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10 minutes ago, Shadow345 said:

Only downside is the unpainted squadrons, after playing and painting Warhammer in the late 2000's I really just didn't want to raise a paintbrush to a model again.

Some people do it for you for Cheap :D

 

 

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I played xwings first and really enjoyed it.  I watched and waited for armada and after it came out I bought the core set on eBay used for like $67... I mean my wife bought it on eBay for me... Haha.  I got hooked and have been heavy into armada ever since. Last fall I decided my xwings stuff just sits in it's bins and never gets used. My armada stuff is used every week. I sold all my xwings stuff on eBay and never looked back. 

I enjoy my fleet battles way more. And I feel to this realization. I asked myself:

"Self, what would you rather play if you had to choose?"

And the answer was always armada. So it was an easy decision for me that put almost $500 back in my wallet.  I bought everything at about 30% off from coollstuffinc.com before they bumped up all there prices so I think I basically broke even or slightly under what I paid for it.

Here is my advise. As you have already played xwings, buy the core set for armada and maybe 1 expansion from each side. Say an Mc30 and a gladiator, or whatever looks cool and fun for you. See how you like it. Then ask yourself.

"Self, what would I rather play?"

 

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5 hours ago, Shadow345 said:

I prefer Armada just slightly.

...

Given that this is the Armada forum I expect more answers like yours.

For me I play X-wing due to financial constraints. It is simply cheaper to buy the next wave than it is to buy a standard list for Armada. Now maybe if I collected X-wing more competitively (2 of each expansion from my primary faction) then getting into Armada might be the more affordable alternative. Believe me I want to get into both but current financial positions (and increasing rent that is approaching the speed of light) makes staying in X-wing even a difficult position.

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6 hours ago, Marinealver said:

Given that this is the Armada forum I expect more answers like yours.

For me I play X-wing due to financial constraints. It is simply cheaper to buy the next wave than it is to buy a standard list for Armada. Now maybe if I collected X-wing more competitively (2 of each expansion from my primary faction) then getting into Armada might be the more affordable alternative. Believe me I want to get into both but current financial positions (and increasing rent that is approaching the speed of light) makes staying in X-wing even a difficult position.

I would argue that X-Wing is cheaper. X-Wing seems to have more waves with more ships in each one released vs Armada waves. The last wave for Armada has 2 ships, the one before 2 ships and 2 squad packs. I avoided Armada for the longest time due to perceived cost, but once you move past the $100 core (vs $40 X-Wing core) I think Armada is actually cheaper or same value as X-Wing.

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I've been saying for a long time that the biggest boundary for entry into this game, especially for people trying to decide whether to start into this or X-wing, is the initial cost. I've been with X-wing since about wave 2, and despite being excited by the prospect of Armada when it was announced (I still have my old Battlefleet Gothic collection, so I was craving something up to date on that scale), I didn't get into it until last year because the price of a core here is about the €120 mark... As a seasoned X-wing vet, that's pretty much the cost of an entire wave of ships, including multiples of some, so it was hard to get over that perceived overpricing. 
However, what I've found since is that while Armada is genuinely expensive to get into compared to X-wing, it is considerably cheaper to maintain pace with than X-wing. For example, the upcoming waves will be released within weeks of each other, it seems. To get everything I need from X-wing is going to run me about €110 to €140 (depending on what price those Scurrg bombers actually come in at, given their size). To get everything I need from the Armada wave will be half that. Over the course of a year, I'll spend an average of three times as much on X-wing - between the much more rapid wave releases, and the increasing price of ships - but the Armada ships I buy will probably see more table time than most of them. As a result, you end up with a situation where the Armada waves are not just cheaper to complete, but better value for money. 

X-wing has a problem with waves in that it both releases arguably too many of them in a year, and that often you're buying multiples of one ship just to prop up another. There isn't a ship in Armada that can't justify it's presence in a high level competition, even at squadron level, where in X-wing the opposite couldn't be more true. 

I still enjoy both, but I find X-wing more enjoyable in a social sense, and Armada much more satisfying in a gameplay sense. X-wing's shorter rounds are not just something that I've found makes it a bit more convivial in the FLGS, but also a lot less daunting for new players. If anything, it's an attraction for new folks to X-wing as they can simply get twice the games in for the same amount of time. Similarly, the table size required often means any games in the FLGS are played way out back, away from much of the store banter, while games of X-wings size are more easily accommodated up front (not to mention making it a pain for many to host games at home). 
This is all anecdotal, based on my experience, but the small group of players (and by small, I mean 6 in the whole city) here isn't really growing at any particular pace, while X-wing does occasionally pick up a few new players after events.

They're very different animals though. There's certainly room for both, but how much action you'll get out of either very much depends on your local support for either one. If you're lucky enough to be in an area that has a decent group for both, considered yourself envied. 

13 hours ago, Drasnighta said:

Some people do it for you for Cheap :D

Define cheap... 

027.jpg

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52 minutes ago, Cusm said:

I would argue that X-Wing is cheaper. X-Wing seems to have more waves with more ships in each one released vs Armada waves. The last wave for Armada has 2 ships, the one before 2 ships and 2 squad packs. I avoided Armada for the longest time due to perceived cost, but once you move past the $100 core (vs $40 X-Wing core) I think Armada is actually cheaper or same value as X-Wing.

The next wave of X-wing is one (US$) $20 ship and two $15 ships and a $30 "aces" expansion that isn't technically part of the wave but won't likely be far behind it. The next of Armada is a $40 and a $30.

After the core set the question of how much it costs becomes all about what options you want for making lists and how you'll be playing. If you don't have to have all the toys... 

 

23 hours ago, mr.thomasschmidt said:

But do you come close to the dogfight feel from x-wing when using the squadrons in Armada?

 

No, the squadron portion of Armada does not at all approximate a dogfight in a similar vein as X-wing.

The most important difference between the games in my opinion is that with Armada you're far less likely to have lost the game before you got to the table in the list building stage. Losing the "action economy" arms race in X-wing with your list is far more devastating than losing the "more activations" arms race in Armada.

With X-wing you don't necessarily need to have a plan before you get to the table. You can "wing it" a lot more in X-wing than you can in Armada. 

This comes from the difference in the way ships activate. Before deployment in X-wing you have a good idea of which order ships will move and which order ships will shoot. With Armada's activations this is much more fluid. X-wing is move then shoot and Armada is shoot then move. So the thinking you have to do while similar is very different. 

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3 minutes ago, AdamGATX105 said:

Abandon all hope in both and go check out Firestorm Armada, cheaper, original IP, more factions to choose from, simpler rules, and not a mountain of upgrade cards to keep track of

Blasphemy!!!

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