Map Update!

The time has come once again to rotate out one the the existing tournament maps and roll in a new one. This is always an exciting time because it brings the opportunity for a shift in the meta. What deployments and lists will find the new eco system of tournament maps most advantageous? The current maps are Wasskah Hunting Grounds, Coruscant Back Alleys, and ISB Training Grounds. Wasskah Hunting Grounds will be removed from the list of tournament maps and is being replaced by… drum roll please… Endor Defense Station!

This map comes from the Captain Terro villain pack. It was the last map in official FFG Organized Play in 2019 before they stopped supporting the game. This map was really popular in the early days of IACP, and I hope it will continue to create many exciting games! There has been a lot of discussion about the state if the IACP meta and how it favours sniper lists and cagey, waiting in cover style play. There has been some eagerness for a map that incentivizes close combat. While this map is not unfriendly to long range shooters, the missions tend to focus on exposing your figures to risk of attack in order to gain victory points. This map is also really good for mobile figures with all the impassible and blocking terrain on the map.

Another part of the meta discussion has been around Rancor lists. As seen in the article on Friday,, there have been a number of cards that have been rebalanced. The Rancor has been the most hotly contested change on our discord recently, particularly due to the extremely high win rate of double Rancor lists in the second half of Season 9 competitive play. I believe this map is really well balanced both for and against the Rancor. Objectives are in the middle, so the Rancor can continue controlling space in the middle of the map, as has been their play style. However, because the Barracks is such a big space to control, instead of a single token, the Rancor is unable to push figures off the Barracks (depending on positioning of course) and counter play to contest the objective is completely viable. The fuel cells are also great for this, because you can pick them up and move, not relying on controlling a specific space on the map, which allows Rancors to threaten any figure that comes to pick up a fuel cell, but unlikely to completely stop them from picking up the cells and gaining VPs from a safe distance. Let’s take a closer look at these missions!

Renovation is a mission that has objective that can be retrieved by a figure. Retrieve is an interact, requiring a figure to use an action to pick up the fuel cell. The fuel cells are placed in such a way that you are risking being attacked to pick one up, however you can retreat back into cover once you are carrying it. Once a figure is carrying a fuel cell it will gain 2 VPs at the end of each round. If the figure is defeated, they drop the fuel cell and it can be picked up by another figure. In order to avoid losing points by having your figures defeated, you can claim a fuel cell by dropping it off at the shield generator (look for the round token on the left side of the map). When a figure carrying a fuel cell is adjacent to the shield generator it can spend 2 movement points to claim that fuel cell and discard the token from their figure. No action required. At this point, that fuel cell gains the player 3 VPs at the end of every round for the rest of the mission. Given the position of the fuel cells and the shield generator, it frequently takes multiple round to retrieve and then claim a fuel cell. Many players opt to only retrieve the tokens instead of spending valuable actions to move to the shield generator, unless the fight conveniently draws them into that area of the map. Note: there is no limit to the number of fuel cells a figure can carry, but it requires a seperate action to retrieve each fuel cell. It also require 2 movement points to claim EACH fuel cell, so a figure trying to claim multiple fuel cells will need to spend more movement points for each fuel cell claimed.

Claim the Ruins is a mission that has 2 objectives that can be controlled. The easiest to spot is the shield generator, which is in the same spot as Renovation. A player controlling that token gains 4 VPs at the end of the round. The Barracks is actually easier to determine in real life as compared to vassal, because it is a specific tile that needs to be controlled. If you look at the legend on the top of the map, you will notice a yellow highlighted area on the map. This is the tile that must be controlled to gain 6 VPs. To control or contest the Barracks, a figure must be standing on the tile at the end of the round. Because of the high value in not contesting the middle, players are highly incentivized to get a figure in the Barracks, either by opening their door, or using additional movement to go around and access the Barracks from the sides. This mission tends to see a lot of combat revolving around the Barracks with more aggressive positioning round 1 to claim/contest the Barracks to gain a 6 VP lead or stop your opponent from gaining such a lead.

Finally, there is a really great video that was made reviewing this map when it was originally rotated into competitive tournament play. You can watch that here for more ideas on how to conquer this map and gain control of the vital Defense Station on the forest moon of Endor!

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