Papa Palp is coming to Legion! Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen.
Yes folks you heard that right, FFG has announce that the big bad himself, the Master of the Sith, ruler of the Galactic Empire and architect of downfall of the Jedi is coming to Star Wars Legion. and Emperor’s Black Bones is he scary, he’s looking to be the most deadly single model in the whole game. Lets take a look at what we know so far.
Palpatine looks to clock in at 240 points, making him base the most expensive model in the game (note- its hard to read his card so some of this could be wrong). Though we can’t see everything well you get a lot for that cost. With 5 health and red defense dice, as well as a surge, hes going to be pretty hard to kill. If you still think he’s too weak give him Esteemed Leader and he can move hits onto nearby allies, or simply put him near the newly announced Royal Guard as they have the same ability. With 4 morale he’s also pretty hard to scare.
He, like Vader, is on the slow side with only speed one, so positioning is very important for him. He’s got a good bunch of upgrade slots, with the ability to take 3 Force powers and one command upgrade. Moreover Master of the Force 2 allows him to refresh TWO of his force powers each turn – which alone makes him pretty deadly. His other abilities are also strong. Immune: Pierce is always good to have. His Entourage ability looks like it allows you to take one more Royal Guard unit than would normally be allowed, which is cool. Pulling the Strings is his last ability and it looks like it allows you to pick a near by trooper unit which gets to either move or attack for free. This is really good and can even be used on Vader for the ultimate Sith tag team.
Lastly his basic attack is just deadly. With 6 dice, 2 of each color, and an offensive surge its got a high damage potential. While its not as straight up powerful as Vaders attack its a lot longer ranged. Pierce 2 and suppression also make it great at mowing down troopers.
Palpatine’s 3 pip card “An Entire Legion” is a solid card as it allows you to give orders to every eligible unit. While it doesn’t give any direct buffs having a turn where you can totally control your activation order is a powerful tool. This seems like a card you’d want to use early in the game to get the most out of it.
The other Card you can kind of make out is “And Now… You Will Die.” As best anyone can make it reads “During Emperor Palpatine’s activation, he may suffer one wound and gain 1 suppression token to perform an attack. He may do this any number of times. After Emperor Palpatine performs an attack, the defender gains 1 immobilized token.” Holy Cow is that good! That means at fully health, and assuming he doesn’t want to/can’t kill him self that means Palpatine could attack FIVE times in a single turn, throwing out 30 attack dice. That’s mind boggling. Given he has Pierce 2 even mediocre rolling should allow for at least 10 dead enemy infantry.
The only new Force Power we can see is Anger which seems to read: “Dark Side only. After you suffer 1 or more wounds, gain 1 aim token.” While this seems pretty good in general as its a passive ability, it also combos really well with “And Now… You Will Die.” Since you take wounds to make the extra attacks, it looks like you could: 1. Suffer wound. 2. Gain an aim token. 3. Make your extra attack and spend the aim token. 4. Repeat. This makes his attacks even more deadly.
Palpatine seems like the ultimate finisher unit. You need to finish him quickly and early on before he can explode in your face. If you are left on turn 4-5 with a small force facing Palpatine and he hasn’t used “And Now…. You Will Die.” You are properly going to lose the game. It seems like using him to push other units forward with Pulling the String early game, then sending him in for the kill late game is the way to to go. He also really makes me wonder if we are going to see a point jump in army size at some point. I’ve speculated about this before, but seeing another Imperial commander thats over 200 points really makes me think it has to be coming. With upgrades he could run almost 300 points, if you wanted to take some Royal Guard with him that alone will cost you half your army. Trying to run him and Vader would be pretty rough as well. (Though I am tempted to try a Vader, Palpatine, AT-ST and 3x 4 Stromtroopers, you can just fit it in). Overall I think he’s a powerful addition to the game.
Let us know what you think of Palpatine down in the comments!