It’s August 30th, and that means it’s time to unveil the first wave of adjustments the first wave of adjustments being implemented for Season 6 (it’s also my birthday, yay me!). I have been assisting the IACP Steering Committee in analyzing the Season 6 game logs and results from 56 game logs submitted, collecting feedback from playtesters and putting together the updated card images, and I also get the honor of detailing all of the changes being made in Season 6 v6.1.
Once they are completed, you can view the official change log, FAQs and printable cards for these changes here: IACP Official Documents – IA Continuity Project (ia-continuityproject.com)
The final slate of changes to Season 6 will be coming on September 27th before the Community vote in October. Make sure to hop on the ZF slack, leave a comment here or take the confidential Season 6 playtest survey to let the Steering Committee know what you think about the current state of Season 6 and the changes that have been made, or not made, so far.
In addition to play adjustments made to Season 6 cards, the keen eyed will also notice that we finally got around to removing the skirmish only symbol that was seemingly included at random on a number of cards that otherwise did not and should not have had it, which was leading to confusion especially among campaign players that also play skirmish or check out IACP for cool cards to spice up their campaigns. 10 IACP cards have had this symbol removed.
12 cards have received functional updates for v6.1. Here are the changes and the reasoning for the changes:
Cara Dune and Ambush
There have been multiple things observed about Cara Dune that maker her a strong deployment card. But the most common thing people tend to notice is that she feels very hard to kill because of that +1 block in combination with a lot of Health and often times block tokens from Extra Armor. It was also observed that there were more ways than initially expected for Cara to use Smash with her Ambush command card to push the attacker away from her and break line of sight, nullifying an attack with a single command card and creating negative play experiences for those that didn’t know the very specific positioning permutations that would allow this to happen.
Cara’s innate +1 block has been removed, and her Smash ability now only pushes the target figure to space that is still adjacent to Cara, ensuring she can’t use Ambush to break line of sight on the attack.
Although the biggest change to Ambush is arguably the change that was made to the Smash ability, Ambush has also been updated to use the same terrain requirements as the Hunker Down ability in order to make them more consistent. Ambush can now be triggered off of Blocking, Impassable, and Difficult Terrain.
Ko-Tun’s ability to distribute 2 damage power tokens each round without needing to spend an action proved to be very powerful in combination with Rebel’s easy access to Focus, as did the addition of Pierce 1 to spending a power token while within 3 spaces of Ko-Tun. This created high damage attacks in Rebels, especially long-range Rebels like Han Solo, that never seemed to stop coming thanks to how efficiently Ko-Tun was able to keep filling up herself and her allies with power tokens into the later stages of the game.
Arms Distribution now distributes only 1 token per turn, but you do get a bonus token at the start of the game, and unlike the FFG version, Ko-Tun can give herself a power token if she wants to. Dead Precise now takes inspiration from Ko-Tun’s command card and provides a reroll to figures that spend a power token on attacking while within 3 spaces instead of adding Pierce 1, but still provides protection against the dreaded Dodge result. This does not make her command card useless though, as her command card gives the reroll to attacking figures that spend power tokens regardless of whether she is within range or even still alive, and you’re still getting 2 additional power tokens from it as well.
Echo Base Trooper
The updated Echo Base Troopers have become a great and reliable workhorse piece in Rebel lists, able to take and dish out a lot of punishment for their points cost. However some players have started to notice that because they get a +2 accuracy innately, which was added to facilitate the use of Front Line, in addition to a surge for +2 accuracy and pierce 1, they are often much better at hanging back and taking Focused range 6-7 shots if possible to avoid engaging the enemy directly, but they were intended to be burly units that held down objectives and harassed their opponents at close range, not overly tanky snipers.
The innate +2 accuracy is being moved to the Front Line ability to make sure they can hit their target from 3 spaces away when swapping the Blue die for a Red, without giving them such a long range attack when not using the Front Line ability.
Troopers were definitely at the top of the pile of best performers in Season 6 playtesting, and the Z-6 was no exception. Squad Upgrades have proven to be very powerful by increasing the number of relatively powerful individual figure activations that can be packed into one group activation. In this case, the ability to possibly attack 4 times in a row in a single activation, on top of chaining further attacks with cards like Call the Vanguard or Strength in Numbers, made for a very potent figure. The specific feedback we saw from the community was how powerful it was to have a figure that could roll 4 attack dice with Focus also have 3 additional attacks come down in the same activation from it’s own Autofire ability and the rest of its base deployment group.
By reducing the Z-6 down to 2 attack dice and giving it an auto-focus ability, the Z-6 can no longer roll more than 3 attack dice by Focusing it. It is now effectively unable to benefit from external Focus sources like C-3P0 and capped at 3 attack dice unless it plays a card like Concentrated Fire or Wild Attack.
Moff Gideon and Demoralizing Monologue (formerly I Know Everything)
Moff Gideon’s abilities and command card originally leaned heavily into hand disruption themed around rewarding knowledge of what was in the opponent’s hand and deck. However with the Moff’s ISB background giving him the Spy trait, this proved to be a bit too disruptive for players, sometimes preventing players from resolving more than a couple of command cards if he was able to play Strat Shift, Intel Leak, I Know Everything and ISB Intel in the right order to absolutely decimate a player’s command card hand.
Moff Gideon retains the Spy trait but now diversifies his skillset a bit more with a new replacement ability and a brand new command card. ISB Intel has been replaced with I Know Everything, which lets Moff Gideon boastfully call the opponent’s next move and rewards him with 1 strain dealt to each figure in that group if they prove him right by activating next.
Moff Gideon’s new command card wonderfully inverts his previous card and weaponizes his immense hubris. Instead of looking into his opponent’s hand and deck, the Moff can arrogantly reveal his own hand to the opponent and the many options he has available in which to dominate them to erode their ability to defend against his attack. Or, if you don’t want to tip your hand, you can settle for the decent ability of rerolling an opponent’s defense die. The nice thing is you get to see the rerolled result before you decide to begin your monologue.
The Flametrooper was able to deal a ton of strain with each attack through a combination of Incinerate, Napalm tokens, and Heavy Weapon cards like Collateral Damage and Heavy Fire. Players seemed to mostly like how Flame troopers altered the battlefield with terrain tokens, but that the amount of strain they were dealing seemed like a lot to people, specifically the 2 strain from the Napalm token, and they also felt a bit more durable than a nameless trooper should at 9 Health when backed up by Zillo Technique and Fireproof.
The Napalm token from Incinerate has been converted into a Rubble token from Heart of the Empire. This helps balance the figure more by reducing how much strain they put out, but also makes the card more accessible to newer and more casual players that have likely encountered Rubble tokens in the Heart of the Empire expansion but would not know what a Napalm token does without needing to do further research into the IACP project. The Health has also been reduced from 9 to 8 to better account for the defensive power of Fireproof.
Migs Mayfeld and Honoring the Fallen
The Scum faction was definitely struggling based on game stats from the playtest game logs submitted. Many players felt that Mayfeld was not outputting enough damage to justify his cost and his low Health, especially if the opponent just ignored him and didn’t trigger Guns Out, the only way for him to deal damage outside of his normal one attack per round. It was a struggle to keep him loaded up with enough tokens to use his abilities consistently and also improve his lackluster attack. The timing of his ability to gain a power token after attacking was also a bit ambiguous without a surge cost, and many people weren’t sure when it was meant to trigger.
Mayfeld is probably one of the biggest improvements for Season 6 so far. His Health increased from 10 to 11 to bring him more in line with the current Health to cost ratio for similar figures established in sets like Heart of the Empire and Tyrants of Lothal. His attack has been reworked, with a +1 damage modifier added on, as well as his surges for Pierce 2 and +1 damage being swapped to +2 damage and Pierce 1. The triple-pistol-wielding gun-for-hire has also dropped his defensive Fast Talker ability for the Locked and Loaded ability, which allows him to carry 3 power tokens instead of just 2, and explicitly gains him 2 power tokens of any type after he resolves an attack. While Mayfeld doesn’t do much outside of attacking, when he does attack, he’s sure to make it count.
Mayfeld’s command card has gotten a small update to help clear up confusion with cards like Reinforcements. Only figures that are currently defeated count towards the card’s bonus, and figures that are brought back with cards like Reinforcements do not count. This also applies to companions like the Junk droid, which can be defeated and brought back multiple times in a game. Since you can only have 1 Junk Droid in the game at a time, if the Junk droid figure is not currently defeated, it will not count towards the damage bonus for Honoring the Fallen.
The Mandalorian, Rising Phoenix
This season’s Mandalorian was actually the most played figure in the game logs received since Season 6s release, with almost 70% of Scum lists including him. And Mando was undeniably tough, with a better defensive profile than Jedi Luke and access to great defensive command cards being a Vehicle and Guardian. But like Mayfeld and the Scum faction in general this season, Mando’s win rate was much lower than the ideal 50%, especially in the Scum faction, though he was doing really well in Empire, alongside Jet Troopers, Zillo Technique, and Extra Armor, the couple of times he appeared there. Similar to Mayfeld, if the opponent just chose not to trigger new Mando’s only way to deal damage outside of his single attack, he just wasn’t even close to putting out the type of damage that we are used to seeing from figures that cost 10 points. His Protective Fire ability was reportedly also contributing to creating extremely complex defensive board states in Scum games when combined with cards like Bodyguard, Get Behind Me, Mayfeld’s Guns Out, Cara’s Ambush, Onar’s Extra Protection, and Greedo’s Slow on the Draw and Parting Shot, and it was mentally taxing trying to always remember the retributive 3-space bubble projected to all figures around Mando in addition to other similar abilities in the faction.
Mando’s Protective Fire has been re-worked to focus more on himself and The Child, of the Clan of Two. Rather than protecting any random unique figure, Protective Fire will now only trigger if you attack Mando or his Child companion (who is almost always right beside Mando and therefore in the same line of fire), and only if the Child has been Incapacitated by Force Exhaustion. This accomplishes several goals. It keeps the Guardian flavor intact, and arguably even strengthens it by tying it to the Child companion instead of any unique figure that happened to be standing around. It narrows down Protective Fire’s sphere of influence significantly, making it much easier to remember when you need to worry about it as the opponent. It widens the gap, in a similar but less restrictive way to unique attachment cards like Focused on the Kill and Rogue Smuggler, between how good Mando is in Scum and Empire, with the latter having so much synergy with a Mobile Vehicle figure with an innate defensive ability thanks to Zillo Technique and Jet Troopers. And finally it creates an interesting decision to make about whether to keep The Child companion around longer to get more value out of Force Heal to remove damage and harmful conditions, or use Force Exhaustion early to gain access to Protective Fire sooner.
Beskar Spear now also gives Mando a 2nd attack to really encourage him to get up close and personal to the opponent and trade blows. But to compensate for the increased power, the 2 movement has been removed and the Pierce 2 has been reduced to Pierce 1 for each attack. Finally, Mando’s health has been reduced from 16 to 14. The Quested ability has also been renamed to Mudhorn Crest for enhanced flavor.
Ironically the final card on this list. The original wording on First Strike did not combine well with the new Bib Fortuna card’s ability to gain 1 extra VP once per round from command cards and deployment cards, since once per round abilities like Bib’s cannot be used during setup. Bib really relies on First Strike to have consistent access to that 2nd Focus token which requires Bib have VPs to spend on the first round, and like the rest of the Scum faction, Bib hasn’t been doing so great in the Season 6 playtest logs.
By changing First Strike’s timing to the start of the first round, just like Rule by Fear, Bib can now add that 1 VP with his ability on round 1 and not be behind on VP when he uses Bartered Information on round 1.
Be sure to share what you think of the 6.1 changes in the comments below and on the ZF Slack channel and IACP Reddit and Facebook pages. Also keep in mind that we have one more Season 6 patch coming up on September 27th before the Community votes on the Season 6 cards in October, so there’s still a chance a Season 6 card gets a change at the end of September.