SW Armada: Phoenix Home for the Holidays

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The Phoenix Home makes it’s entrance to the world of Star Wars: Armada.

As a sort of early Life Day present Fantasy Flight have given us a look at the Phoenix Home expansion for the Rebels in Star Wars: Armada. This is a pretty cool expansion. Not only does it bring a lot of Star Wars: Rebels into the game, but it also introduces the new Fleet Command upgrade cards. So with out any more gabbing, lets get into the ship and it’s upgrades.

The Ship

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The Pelta-Class, of which the Phoenix Home is the most famous, comes in two types. The Assault Ship is a close range bruiser, with a pretty decent forward arc. While it may not be the most impressive ship it is the cheapest Rebel ship to get missile upgrades, which is cool. Overall it’s kind of similar to the Gladiator, maybe a bit weaker and slower, but also more flexible. It does get the trifecta of brace, redirect and evasion, which is nice and as such a bit more survival than the MC-30. A decent ship I’d say, but speed two will kill it.

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Unlike some other ships the two versions of the Pelta are very different from one another and fill totally unique roles. While the Assault ship is meant to well, assault things, the command variant is a true support ship. The Command ship really fills three roles. First off it’s a decent carrier with squadron three  and an offensive retrofit slot. Secondly it’s a decent long range fighter, with a four dice front battery, two of them red. Lastly it’s got the new fleet command upgrade slot, and it’s supporting role position means it’s less likely to get killed early on.  Overall I think the Command version is a really neat little jack of all trades ship at a decent price point.

 

The Pelta clearly fits in with the newer Rebel ships that focus on frontal attacks, rather than broadsides. It seems to be overall a nice little mid range ship that can fit a few roles and bring some neat tricks to the table. But you get more than just a ship in this pack.

 

Upgrades

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The name sake card of this expansion Phoenix Home  is one of the best title cards we’ve seen. The ability to keep twice it’s normal tokens alone would have been great, and works well with fleet command. Being able to take a second officer on the ship really takes it over the top though. Two officers adds a lot of flexibility to your list and opens the possibility of some cool combos. I could see for instance taking Raymus Antilles and Ashoka Tano to allow you to give a command of one type and then get the token of your choosing.

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Speaking of Ashoka, she comes in a cheap two points and while not game breaking does allow for some good command token tricks. Now the Rebels already have a few ways to do something similar, but she is the cheapest and should find a place in a few fleets.

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If Ashoka doesn’t get you excited, Major Derlin should. Derlin is really great defensive card allowing for some extra survivblity. Taking one less damage a turn is a pretty cool idea and could work on a lot of ships. Just think about putting him on Bright Hope to make a really hard to kill little ship. He maybe not be really tricky, but he is straightforwardly good.

The Commander

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Lastly Commander Sato is poised to be one of the best Rebel admirals. His ability works on a good mixing of large ships and squadrons, which is already a strong tactic. Being able to change out one type of dice for another is a really great ability, allowing Rebels to make long range black dice attacks, or switch dice to get more accurate blue dice. I cannot say how power being able to use Concussion Misses or APT’s at long range will be.  An MC-30 using Sato could put out up to 11 black dice in one turn. I see some really crazy combos for Sato, and best of all his ability is very fluffy.

 

Fleet Command

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Of course the new Fleet Commands are the real star of this expansion, allowing you to give benefits to your whole fleet. “All Fighters, Follow Me!” is a great one for any fighter based fleet and certainly works well with Sato. While it does require you to be activating the fighters it is still great. Giving B-wings speed 3 makes them pretty viable. The same is true of YT-1300s.

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My least favorite of the new cards,  “Entrapment Formation!” does add some flexibility to your fleet. While it is a not a bad ability, it’s one that can be replicated by other means, spending a token, and one that not every ship will want to use every turn or even game. Still I can see it being really useful when needed.

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“Shields to Maximum!” is by far my favorite Fleet Command. Letting every ship get a shield back each turn is a really powerful ability. It could open up some cool tricks. It’s an ability that most ships will use each game, many more than once and combined with Derlin and the Rebel’s string shields makes for some tough kills. If I had to pick one, 80% of the time I would take this upgrade without thinking about over the others.

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From the Old Republic to the New

Final Thoughts

Phoenix Home is shaping up to be a really great expansion for Armada. The ship it’s self is a really great mid-range ship, allowing for some new tactics. It fills a nice role as a flagship and I feel it may push the AFMKII out of the game. Mixing firepower with tricks make it a must have for any commander. Add in a few great upgrades, not all of which we have seen yet, and the new Fleet Command Cards, and you’ve got the makings of a perfect present with Wave V.

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That’s all for this week BoLS Fans. Let us know what you think about the new Fleet Command upgrades down in the comments!

  • Raven Jax

    Oh Star Wars, where even ships that have less than 10 minutes total screen time get turned into every toy and game imaginable.

    Still, legit reason for bringing Ahsoka into the game.

    • Averam

      Given how little of the Star Wars films actually take place in space, I don’t think there’s that many ships with MORE than 10 minutes of screen time, other than the fighters and even then that’s more cumulative than individually.

      • Xodis

        This is seriously why we need a Rogue Squadron movie instead of Rogue 1. Need a heavier focus on actual space battles for at least 1 movie.

        • Averam

          Absolutely. Rogue One is the first piece of Star Wars-related “product” – film, TV show, book, whatever – that I’m just not interested in seeing. I’d much rather them cover new ground and put some more wars out among the stars instead of retreading the old stuff – there can’t be any real jeopardy in Rogue One because you already know that they succeed. Now, a movie adaptation of the Stackpole X-Wing books? That I’d like to see.

          • Xodis

            I just hope that once they are done with the new trilogy, they get smart and we start getting some Old Republic stories and movies. Instead of shoving Lightsaber battles into the current stories where Jedi/Sith are all but destroyed and gone, just make a Jedi/Sith war movie and give everyone the Lightsaber porn you want them to have lol.

      • Raven Jax

        If we’re talking about the movies, then yeah, 10 minutes of screen time is probably right for most ships. But Phoenix Home is from the TV shows, where there is much, much more opportunity for screen time.

        Okay, so SPOILERS if you haven’t seen SW Rebels.

        The Phoenix Home appears in maybe one or two episodes before it gets destroyed. There are many other ships in the Star Wars universe that have much more screen time than this ship. I just find it ironic that they chose a ship that appears on screen for such a short amount of time, rather than, say, the Flurry, which has also appeared in Rebels, plays an important part in the old EU, and already has a model.

        • JD Robertson

          I doubt FFG gets scripts ahead of time and they probably picked the ship some time back and are stuck with it. The class did show up in numerous Clone Wars episodes, however, and is a better design than some of the EU stuff.

          • Raven Jax

            That’s true, I forgot it was in some Clone Wars episodes. Gotta disagree about the design though. So many of the “new” Disney ships are starting to blend together and become indistinguishable from one another.

        • frankelee

          It’ll probably blow up pretty fast on the table too.

      • SupPupPup

        Its kinda why I don’t like Armada. It doesn’t feel starwarsy to me.

        I prefer the dogfightyness of xwing.

  • JD Robertson

    Derlin + Admonition seems like the scarier prospect than Derlin + Bright Hope.

    >> An MC-30 using Sato could put out up to 11 black dice in one turn.

    ?… Are you assuming a concentrate fire command?

    Sato’s actually become less powerful since his announcement. The original wording didn’t include the “before rolling dice” text, and given how the attack rules are worded that meant you could choose to do the replace after seeing the results on the original dice.

  • DaveTycho

    Phoenix Home and Commander Sato are rubbish. They easily get tabled by one custom TIE fighter without even trying.