Season 4 Preview: Make Ten Men Feel Like a Hundred

Troopers have been part of the Rebel faction since the beginning of Imperial Assault. And players have been doing their best to make competitive lists with those Troopers. While the Rebel Trooper deployment cards never found a real competitive niche, Echo Base Troopers were once a competitive option before they were left behind by the power curve. Alliance Rangers are expensive but still viable damage-dealers that work best on big, open maps. Since the Rangers entered the game, however, Rebel players have had no other multi-figure Trooper figures to use.

We were introduced to a new kind of Alliance trooper in Rogue One. These soldiers did the “dirty work” of a fledgling Rebellion, advancing deep within enemy lines and striking hard and fast. They’re made up of spies, saboteurs and assassins. Not content to work within the shadows any longer, many of these soldiers volunteered to join a suicide mission on Scarif to steal information about the greatest technological threat of their time.

Today’s Season 4 Preview introduces the Rebel Pathfinders to Imperial Assault Skirmish. The Steering Committee designed this card to represent abilities that the Rebel Pathfinders used during the Battle of Scarif. We hope that you will find these abilities create a playstyle that’s different from existing Rebel Troopers and that is also fun to play.

There were a lot of explosions for two people blending in.

Infiltration allows Rebel players to be more aggressive by threatening open areas that most figures could never reach during the first round. This means that your Pathfinders can run too far away from your support figures and leave behind getting Focus or other attack buffs. You’ll have to analyze your attack plan and decide whether or not the Pathfinders should advance or hold.

When you do have your Pathfinders engage in combat, you’ll want them to Light It Up: If a Pathfinder was not in line of sight of its target at the start of its activation, it can reroll up to 2 attack dice. This reroll greatly increases the odds that a Pathfinder without Focus will reach a target 7 or more spaces away with just their two-die attack. They’re not the best long-range Trooper attackers; Alliance Rangers with their 2 blue dice, rerolls & Hunter trait still earn that title.

While a Rebel Pathfinder is Focused — or gaining a red die to their attack roll from Coordinated Fire command card — Light It Up dramatically increases the damage potential of the Pathfinders’ attacks. Since the Element of Surprise command card triggers the same way as Light It Up, the two abilities can be very deadly against crucial targets with a single defense die like Thrawn, Greedo, Kayn Somos, Luke Skywalker (Hero of the Rebellion) and BT-1.

While your opponent will dislike the damage suffered from your Pathfinders’ attacks, they will especially dislike Distracting Fire. It forces your opponent to activate a deployment group that was just attacked by one of those Pathfinders. This ability can be very strong when used smartly: A set of Pathfinders can attack Darth Vader, forcing the opponent to activate Vader before an Rebel Force User melee attacker approaches the area and could be attacked by Vader. Vader could also be forced to activate before his Riot Troopers or Elite Royal Guard can advance into a position to help him. (If the Rebel Fleet Troopers desperately trying to board the Tantive IV had this ability, some of them might have gotten away!)

The Committee wanted Rebel Pathfinders to feel like scrappy defenders that can only hold out for so long. A white defense die, no static defense modifiers and an average 7 Health enforces the idea that the Pathfinders are taking the next chance and then the next… until the chances are spent. We feel this opens up counterplay against Pathfinders that get too aggressive with their positioning, as they can be easily overwhelmed.

We’re also looking forward to seeing players using the Rebel Pathfinder experiment with Lie in Ambush. As with the E-Web Engineer’s Forward Deployment ability, the Rebel Pathfinder’s Infiltration ability does not trigger when they are placed on the map using Lie in Ambush. However those Pathfinders who do have Lie in Ambush can deploy in the opponent’s deployment zone and then use Light It Up to potentially wipe out a low-Health deployment group. They can also force your opponent to activate a support figure that leaves one of your opponent’s heavier hitters vulnerable to being attacked in your next activation.

Are we blind! Deploy the garrison!

Tools for the Job

With characters from The Mandalorian & Rogue One, Season 4 adds multiple figures that have never been represented in the game before. If you are playing physical games — safely away from crowds — you might wonder how to represent your Rebel Pathfinders on the map. The easiest option will be printing tokens on our Printable Cards PDF.

If you want to spend less time and money making figures, we recommend using the Star Wars: Legion miniature figures for these Rogue One troopers. Not only does it help Fantasy Flight Games continue to produce Star Wars content, the Legion small figure bases fit on an Imperial Assault map space with a manageable overlap. You may 3D print a figure or order a 3D model made for Imperial Assault’s scale. You may use existing IA figures as a proxy (e.g. you use Echo Base Trooper figures to represent the Rebel Pathfinder in your army). Whatever method you use should be okay in casual games so long that both you and your opponent aren’t confused about which unit is which.

We’ll have more details about representing figures like these inside a physical competitive environment in a future post.

This article is part of our Season 4 Preview series. Until the end of July 2020, the Steering Committee will be revealing the cards that make up our Season 4 content. You can discuss these cards in the comments of this post or on the IACP Reddit.

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