SW Armada: A New Faction?

Does Star Wars Armada need a new faction?

Pretty much ever since Armada was released people have been wondering if the game will get a third faction. Star Wars, especially the Original Trilogy, or Rebellion, Era, is mostly centered around the two main factions of Rebels and Empire. While keeping the game to two factions makes sense from a canon point of view, it’s not the best option from a game perspective. The fact is that having only two factions, limits options and game-play. To some it can even make the game feel very repetitive. This was certainly an issue with X-Wing, and the introduction of the Scum and Villainy faction really helped expand that game.

Scum and Villainy’s existence in X-Wing has been the major driving force behind the theory that Armada  could get get a third, or even more, factions. Fantasy Flight Games is clearly willing to play around with a new faction. Armada may really need a third faction to really take off. But what would the first faction be? And how would it work in the game?

Well, lets take a look at a few possibilities.

Scum and Villainy

Sounds like a fun place

The most obvious option is to bring in the X-wing faction of Scum and Villainy. This would be a faction comprised of outlaws, bounty hunters and crime lords. Women, men, and aliens of all genders that work outside Imperial Law, but don’t follow the high ideas of the Rebellion. Hutts, Mandalorians, Black Sun, Pirates and others. This would be a great way to take existing characters form X-wing and put them into Armada. Scum and Villainy works great as a way of combining a host of lesser factions into one able to compete on the galactic stage. Star Wars Rebels, as well as the Clone Wars, has done a good job flushing out some of these factions and making them rip for their own faction.

A helpful diagram

This would most likely be a faction based on the use of small ships. The Scum of the Galaxy rarely have access to major capital ships in any numbers. In addition they would most likely be able to use some of the existing Imperial and Rebel ships, giving them a robust roster at launch. One of the major arguments against the faction is that while they work in a skirmish game like X-wing, they wouldn’t work in a game of massive space battles. However years ago, when the computer game Star Wars: Empire At War was looking to expand the creators brought in the Zhan Consortium (effectively Scum and Villainy) as a third faction, and it worked pretty well.

The Yuuzhan Vong

We got some sticks!!!!

Everyone hates the Yuuzhan Vong. For those who don’t know, the Vong were a race of extra galactic warriors who used their organic based technology to invaded the galaxy late in the old EU. While some good stories came out of this massive line of books, The New Jedi Order, the Vong themselves were polarizing, the say the least. They are however a faction that now only have a fully developed roster of ships, but power wise was able to compete with, well, everyone else. With a totally different look and alien technology they would be a faction that operated in a totally differnt way from any other. If nothing else they would be unique.

The Chiss Ascendancy

The love child of an X-wing and a TIE

Far out in the Unknown Regions the Chiss race, Thrawn’s people, unknown to the rest of the Galaxy have been building an Empire of their own. The Chiss, secretive and isolationist could be a powerful faction. In the old EU there where slightly developed but still mysterious, and now thanks to Thrawn  the Ascendancy is canon again. A powerful canon empire that is around during the time frame of Armada is really just what FFG needs.  With not much known about them FFG could have some freedom to develop their ships and playstyle as needed. In addition the old EU gives them plenty of inspiration and ships to draw on in their usual fashion. Thrawn’s popularity, and the face that the Chiss are pretty well known in the fandom, would allow for a familiar face to the new faction.

The Lesser Factions

A Hapen Battledragon

Star Wars is full of lesser factions that could possibly be used. The Hapens, the Ssi-rruk, the Corporate Sector Authority  the Imperial successor states like the Pentastar Alignment or Eriadu Authority or even factions from different eras, the Separatists, the Old Republic, the First Order or the Resistance. Any of these could be used, but all of them either tend to be too minor, thus lacking in a good ship roster, or from a different era and thus not comtemparies of the other factions. They are options, but not the best ones.

Making the Faction Different

Why not the Hutts? 

 

What ever they choose FFG needs to take some steps to make the faction play in a whole different way. Here are a few ideas

  1. This could be by having them focus on a certain class of ships. Scum and Villainy could be mostly small ships, with one or two medium and no large ships. Something like the Chiss could instead be almost all large ships with few small ones.
  2. A faction might be really dependent on squadrons, maybe even being able to take a greater number of them.
  3. Maybe the new faction has some cards that let them move differently. The Vong had a lot of gravity manipulation ability, what if they could move their ships sideways, or gasp, backwards?
  4. A faction could be the opposite of the Rebels are completely lack shields on their ships instead focusing massive amounts of hull points.
  5. The Vong had some great anti-missile defenses, maybe the new faction could have some abilities that make them very strong vs black dice, but blue dice are their undoing?

Any of these ideas could be great ways of building a type of fleet and faction around. Any of these factions could make an interesting and vital addition to the game. The questions is, what will FFG do?

 

~What do you think? Should there be at third faction? If so, what should it be and how should it play? Let us know down in the comments! 

  • VanosOfManos

    Or do the freakin’ prequels/Clone Wars and use the Republic vs Secessionist forces. Armada has never really interested me, but if they made a model of the Malevolence or Jedi Starfighters I’d be in.

    • Damistar

      Amen to this! The Clone Wars is a much better era for capital ship / mass star fighter battles. Other than the Battle of Endor and Scarif there were very few large ship battles in the Rebellion Era. In the Clone Wars it seems every contested planet had an orbital struggle involving multiple cruisers. I suppose there’s some licensing reason they don’t do it.

      • Jay Barton

        Not to mention clone wars battles were alot less one-sided. In the Galactic civil war the rebels are typically out gunned and on the run.

        • Mr_Pickles

          if only Admiral Ackbar had more CR90 Corvettes, those things outgun the empire when in mass numbers….

    • zeno666

      Clone Wars as in Episode 1 – 3? No thanks, those never happend 😉

  • davepak

    yes, and the obvious ones are;
    Clone wars: republic and clone wars: Separatists.

    And before anyone says “but you would not see battles of separatists vs. rebels” I would point you should not see battles of two imperial fleets fighting, both with darth vader….

  • Mikołaj Nowak

    Yes. Even two: Grand Army of Republic and Secessionist!

  • mafiacheese

    I’m definitely in favor of a S&V faction!

  • Matthew Pomeroy

    the Vong are one of the things I am glad are no longer canon, I wouldnt mind clone wars fleets (and some of those may be lingering during the rebellion)

  • GiftoftheMagi

    No thanks on Republic vs. Separatists. While I get the desire to have two forces on a relatively equal playing field, that isn’t the point of Star Wars. Point in fact, the Empire vs. Rebel tactics is GOOD for the game. It gives the players something unique to work with, not two cloned (pun intended) armies with only slight differences. If you want that, field two Empire fleets.

    Also, the less we promote Prequel stuff, the more likely Disney will finally reboot the three films and we can finally chuck them into the garbage where they belong.