A New Hope
The 2nd Edition of Star Wars: X-Wing has been out for nearly 5 years now and is the version that anyone coming to it will be playing. The original review was written from the point of view of someone who had migrated from 1st Edition. I didn’t. Despite seeing the original film at the Chester Odeon when it first came out and being in love with all things Star Wars ever since, the 1st Edition passed me by. So I started with 2nd edition, this very core set and it blew me away!
You get to be Luke Skywalker in the iconic X-Wing fighting 2 x TIE fighters. The basic rules are easy to master and the gameplay is intriguing and the models are finely detailed and beautiful. They’re ready painted! Yes there’s no assembly either except for their two-part stands. The paint jobs are done to a very high standard and look fantastic. I buy a lot of miniature products, usually sets with masses of models in, and whilst I enjoy (sometimes) constructing and painting them, to get a set where it’s all ready to go straight out of the box is a delight.
The models are truly wonderful and collectible in their own right. By now Fantasy Flight Games have covered almost every small and medium sized ship from the Star Wars universe, all the ones you know and love and even some you may not remember. (For the truly huge ships you’ll have to go to Star Wars : Armada but that’s another story)
This can be seen as a drawback because once you’ve got the bug from this great value set you’ll want more and more. This can be a money pit, still you can’t take it with you! I’ve managed to build a sizeable collection from sales and end-of-line deals and, one tip, buying a second core set is the best deal in this galaxy or the next!
The Force Is Strong With This One
I’ll not rehearse the rules and how to play in this piece as it’s already been covered in the previous descriptions. Suffice to say that with the Star Wars: X-Wing – 2nd Edition Core Set and the Quickstart guide you can very quickly get to fight Tie-Fighters with your X-Wing. Later you will be able to add Luke Skywalker, himself, and use the Force! This is an ability that builds up round by round and allows you change die rolls.
One of the interesting things to look at with Aerial combat, or in this case Space combat, is how the rule writers handle the 3rd dimension. Well, in this case, they don’t! Combat is played out as if it were naval warfare on a flat ocean only in this case it’s black space. (Maybe that’s why there are X-Wings and Y-Wings but no Z-Wings – there’s no Z Dimension!). However, I’d say this doesn’t matter as there’s enough going on with the Initiative and Manoeuvre system as it is.
You all plot your moves in advance and reveal them together. This is where the fun lies in mentally grappling with not only where your ship will end up but where it will be in relation to everyone else. There are often a lot of surprises, good or otherwise when you think your nifty move will put you on the tail of an enemy only to find they’ve rolled away and are, in fact, behind you! The Initiative system of pilot’s abilities is good too. The lower numbers move first but then the higher numbers shoot first, to the potential devastating detriment of the less able.
The manoeuvre dials are a splendid mechanic. As well as their tactile functionality they enable ships performance to be easily differentiated: faster or slower with nimble agility or ponderous turns. I have one ship in my fleet the “Punishing One” with an asymmetric design, that turns faster to one side than the other.
The Action Cards, too, provide a fount of full-on flavour: introducing all the different characters, heroes and villains, humans and droids plus a vast variety of special abilities, weapons and ship functionality. Together with the dials these enable all the different ships and vessels to have their own distinguishing character and enable you to try endless variations in combat to see what works best against what.
There Is No Try!
Sorry to contradict you Master Yoda but with Star Wars: X-Wing – 2nd Edition Core Set there is! I urge anyone who loves Star Wars to give it a go you won’t regret it. It’s a modest outlay, although it could lead you on!
I notice the original reviewer only gave the artwork 3 out of 5. I’d put it at 5 stars! I don’t know what more you could expect. The graphical quality is excellent, totally in tune with Star Wars branding. The Action cards are of CCG quality with original artwork from the movies yet presenting all the information you need for gameplay in a clear, concise, graphical depiction. (Talking of art. If you were wondering about the play area in the picture I made it by painting a piece of plywood black, adding cut out, printed planets and sprinkled Talc for the star fields!)