Imperial Assault is a board game produced by Fantasy Flight Games that made loyal fans from both its technical complexity and its diversity of play. As of April 2019, Fantasy Flight announced at Star Wars Celebration that while the Campaign game type will continue to get content through the official Imperial Assault app, no new physical content is being produced. Without new content, the competitive Skirmish game type will no longer be dynamic and players will move on to other games.
This project takes up the charge to diversify, balance and support the game so that Skirmish fans can continue playing. The Steering Committee’s goal is to help the community improve existing content, add new content to the game and organize online & in-person play events. The Committee hopes that through regular communication and open-sourced testing, the game will be improved for the enjoyment of current and new fans. The Committee will also facilitate tournaments and play events with the community, so we all can keep playing.
How The Steering Committee Releases Content: Seasons
The IA Continuity Project Steering Committee will release content in a package known as a Season: a 4-month long collaborative effort between the community and the Committee to propose and test changes that can add freshness and fun to the meta. During a Season the Committee will propose an initial set of changes and ask questions to the community about the current state of the game. The Committee will track community feedback to ensure changes are not game-breaking and/or not fun. The Committee will also take proposals from the community for changes to be considered in future Seasons.
A Season will roughly the following structure:
Day 1: Announcement of suggested changes on the IA Continuity Project Website, which is shared across the IA Skirmish community.
First 2 Weeks: The Skirmish community will present their first impression of the suggested changes. Any changes that are unpopular with players will be reworked or removed from the Season. There will be fixes and clarifications for cards that have broken mechanics or poor language based on feedback.
Start of Week 3: Results of the Announcement survey will be posted and the suggested changes will be locked in for testing in that Season. An online testing league will be organized to facilitate testing. A Playtest Survey will be presented so that play testers can provide feedback on the new changes: How powerful they are, how fun they are to play, how they interact with other figures, etc. Players will be encouraged to run physical playtest events at their local game stores.
First 3 Months: Back and forth testing and dialogue between the community and the Committee. Changes will be made in case of any imbalance issues or if the community wants changes to specific cards.
End of 3rd month: Online Season tournament, crowning a season champion!
First two weeks of 4th month: Exit survey & vote. Community decides which changes are kept, which changes need to be reworked, and which changes must be scrapped completely. The vote to keep changes will be a simple yes or no vote where at least 60% of voters must approve each change.
4th month: The Committee finalizes season changes and prepares for next season announcement.
All changes for that season will rotate out at the end of the season unless the community votes to approve them.
What happens when a change has been “approved” by IACP Voters?
The change will be considered IACP Approved. Based on the feedback of playtesters, an IACP Approved change may need to be tweaked in order to make the change better. In that case, a Season may include modifications to previous IACP Approved changes. Also if an IACP Approved change causes an issue with game balance that was previously undiscovered, the Steering Committee will immediately rectify that change.
Otherwise, if an IACP Approved change causes no issues, it will remain approved.
Will there be a professionally printed deck of IACP cards?
We’d like to provide that in the future. It is not a priority at the current time (July 2019) due to the following reasons:
- We would like to ensure that our IACP Approved changes to Deployment and Command cards do not require more tweaking or correction. Once we have collected enough playtesting data, we’ll feel more comfortable exploring printing options.
- There may be some legal issues with professionally printing materials that are part of a gaming system owned by Fantasy Flight Games that includes intellectual property owned by Disney. If we discover any legal issues, we’ll need to resolve those first before printing.
In lieu of professional printed cards, the Steering Committee will provide PDFs of cards with Season changes and IACP Approved changes. Players can then print these card images and use them with their existing cards.
How does this project work with the official rulings from Fantasy Flight Games?
Our desire is that Fantasy Flight Games continues to update the rules, promote organized play events and create new content for the Skrimish game type. In lieu of FFG not fulfilling those roles, the project will do the best it can to do so. In the case of changes to cards and rules, the Committee hopes that the community abides by the Committee’s recommendations and implements them as “unofficially official”.
When FFG does update rules or cards to address the same concerns addressed by the Project Steering Committee, the Committee will likely withdraw their recommendation in lieu for the official fix.
Example: For Season 1, the Spectre Cell Skirmish Upgrade card was banned because it was overpowered and players were exhausted from having to play or play against it. In the middle of Season 1, FFG released an errata to Spectre Cell which drastically reduced its power. For Season 2, Spectre Cell has been unbanned from IACP play.
What are IACP’s Plans for Organized Play?
Starting in April of 2020, FFG will no longer be providing components or events for IA Organized Play. We thank them for extending the OP season to 2020 Worlds at Adepticon, and for running so many events and producing kits for the community of Skirmish players.
IACP will be working with the remaining Skirmish community to help support future in-person and online gaming events. We’ve already developed prize support for Regional tournament events and smaller, community-based events. We’re planning to continue running a Skirmish Worlds once a year. We’re developing tournament regulations to support IACP play for players who may not have every Imperial Assault figure or card in their possession.
We’ll update this post once IA Worlds in March 2020 has completed.
Steering Committee Members
- Jesse Betz – US-based tournament organizer, 2020 Denver CO Regional winner
- Isaac Borno, Boardwars.eu Podcast, Top 16 2018 European National Championship, Runner-Up 2018 United Kingdom National Championship
- Patrick Christians, 2019 GenCon Champion
- Oliver Dewhurst – UK Regional Champion in 2018 & 2019, studied Wargaming at the University of Cranfield, Chewbacca enthusiast
- Christopher Emmick, CNE Skirmish Fixes Document creator
- Derek Martens – 2019 Winnipeg Canada Regional winner
- Noa Pestana – Owner of the IA Command YouTube channel, 2018 Redmond WA Regional winner
- Jake Petersen, Twin Troopers Podcast
- Kenny Brown, Zion’s Finest Podcast & Zion’s Finest Slack Channel
- Brett Kelly, 2019 IA Worlds Champion, 2018 IA Nationals Champion — Seasons 1 & 2
- Daniel Taylor, 3-Time IA Worlds Champion (2016, 2017, 2018) — Seasons 1 & 2
- Ben Varnum, 2019 IA Worlds Top 16, Everybody’s Huckleberry — Season 1 & development of Season 2 content
- Javier Alcalde Jurado – Graphic design of custom IACP cards, Spanish translator
- Pasi Ojala – IA Rules Guru
- Gil de Olivereira – French Translator
- Ryan Koehlinger – Graphic design & PDF generation
- Trevor Payton – Developer of IA Skirmish Vassal module
- Valerio Di Gregorio, Marco Tozzi and Franco Casucci – Italian translation
- Karol Pruszkowski – Polish translation
How to Participate
Keep playing IA! During the beta testing portion of each Season, try out the changes to the existing Imperial Assault Skirmish game. Feedback forms will be made available for you to share your thoughts on the changes, which the Committee will collect and summarize to the community. Vote at the end of the testing period to approve the fixes and new material you think is fun and rewarding.
The Committee is active on the FFG forums, the Imperial Assault subreddit, BoardGameGeek.com’s IA forums & other places where Skirmish players congregate. There is a special channel on the Zion’s Finest Slack (#iacontinuityproject) where the community gets real-time updates in from the Committee on new projects and content. To join the Slack, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting to join.
Check out our How To Participate page for more info!
Why Is There No Recost or Fix For X? (The Boba Fett Question)
The Committee’s goal is to reinvigorate the meta by highlighting several figures from different archetypes in each faction. Each figure that is repriced requires extensive testing throughout the season to make sure it fits into the meta. Rebalancing a large number of figures has a high likelihood of throwing the game into an unrecognizable state. Above all else the Committee wants changes to maintain the spirit and feel of Imperial Assault; therefore the Committee will be taking a conservative approach of only touching a limited number of figures per season.