A few weeks ago at Black Knight Games, I noticed they would soon be having a launch event for Star Wars: Destiny, another FFG Star Wars game. This one combining both deck building and dice rolling. I figured I was in a unique position: finished college, employed reasonably well for a recent grad and with tons of free time: so I could easily pick up a fresh game. Being an avid X-Wing player, and having enjoyed a couple of Imperial Assault campaigns, I figured FFG had done a good job with their Star Wars licence, so it was worth a shot. I did some research, thought it looked fun, signed up, and on Saturday, I showed up to play.
There were two decks to choose from, one centred around Kylo Ren and a stormtrooper, the other around Rey and Finn. Knowing the full extent of a stormtrooper’s power, I figured I was better off without one.
The starter decks only contain 20 cards, with while the custom decks for tournaments contain 30, but its often better to start simple. I very much doubt your first X-Wing experience was a 100 point game (mines wasn’t) so starting smaller seems to work well.
So the basics of the game are as follows: You select 2 characters to base your deck around. This is an example for a character card.
The ’10’ in the top corner means Han has 10 health. The six symbols on the left are the six sides of his character die (Han can deal a great amount of damage and interfere with resources for both sides). The 14/18 is the number of points Han is worth. It costs 14 to field him with one die, and 18 to field him with two. You get 30 points. He is a yellow character (meaning rogue) and there are also red (military) and blue (force user) characters. The middle of the card shows his effect.
In short, the object of the game is to use your characters, the cards in your hand, and the dice and die manipulation effects of those cards to get all of an opponent’s characters down to 0 health. Below is a more detailed explanation than I have time or space to write in a blog post. You also outright see the game played, meaning I also don’t run the risk of explaining it in a way that causes people to picture it wrong.
I played 3 matches with my starter deck, winning two of them. Possibly the best part of the game is how fast it plays. It’s core concept is often described as ‘I get an action, you get an action’, and since ‘actions’ rarely take more than 10 seconds, you’re never waiting a long period of time for your opponent to finish what they’re doing. Afterwards, it seemed as if the game was well-received by people, as most participants, including me, bought a bunch of boosters (I got the falcon!!!). Some of us even stayed behind to build our own deck, and I was actually the first one to do so, building a deck around the basic version of 3 force users. On one hand, such a quick easy to build deck seemed like a good idea. On the other hand, odds are always against the person who hastily puts together a strategy. But who cares about that, right?
I played in a couple of close games, losing both by only a couple of health, but learned the strengths and weaknesses of the deck I had cooked up.
Overall, it was a fun experience for me. I understand that a Magic: The Gathering style collectable game isn’t for everybody, so if this game doesn’t interest you that’s perfectly fine. If on the other hand, you’ve enjoyed similar games in the past, or just enjoy Star Wars games in general, I would say this game deserves at least a look.
May the force be with you pilot.