|Ready for Takeoff
Announcing the First Force Pack in the Rogue Squadron Cycle
|Star Wars: The Card Game | Published 14 July 2014|
“We’ll have to destroy them ship to ship. Get the crews to their fighters.”
–Darth Vader, Star Wars: A New Hope
The battles of the Star Wars saga are fought on planets and in space. On solid ground, heroes like Han Solo and Leia Organa exchange blaster fire with nameless troopers, but in the freezing void of space, other heroes pilot starfighters through fierce combat and breakneck contests of skill and nerve. The fearless men and women of the Galactic Empire, the Rebel Alliance, and others develop new starfighters continually and pilot these experimental spaceships in battle.
As the first Force Pack in the Rogue Squadron cycle, Ready for Takeoff brings these interstellar battles to the forefront, as Vehicles and Pilots clash in the vacuum of outer space. With a new fate card, iconic starship pilots like Lando Calrissian and “Mauler” Mithel, and new mechanics for piloting your Vehicles, Ready for Takeoff has plenty to offer, whether you fly for Rogue Squadron or Black Squadron. This Force Pack contains ten new objective sets (two copies each of five unique sets) and in Ready for Takeoff, you’ll get your first taste of piloting each faction’s iconic starships.
In addition to a fleet of new starships and pilots, the Rogue Squadron cycle introduces new packaging for Star Wars: The Card Game Force Packs! The packaging will be changing from cardboard to plastic, but every Force Pack still contains the full complement of ten new objective sets.
Get to Your Ships!
Even the most awe-inspiring ships still benefit from the best pilots, and Ready for Takeoff introduces a new keyword to ensure that your cutting-edge fighters and starships have ace pilots. Units that have the pilot (X) keyword may be played from hand as a Pilot enhancement attached to a friendly Vehicle unit by paying resources equal to X – the unit’s pilot cost.
For example, Derek “Hobbie” Klivian (Ready for Takeoff, 699) possesses the pilot (1) keyword. By paying one resource, you may attach "Hobbie" to any friendly Vehicle unit. The attached Vehicle is considered to be “piloted,” and "Hobbie" is “piloting” the Vehicle. Piloting your Vehicles is critical, since many new units feature powerful abilities that only activate while they are piloted or piloting. Of course, you are never required to use a unit as a pilot, and you may play “Hobbie” as a unit by paying his resource cost.
Today, we’ll look at an upcoming objective set from Ready for Takeoff that highlights some of the themes you’ll unveil within the Rogue Squadron cycle.
Earn Your Bloodstripes
In Ready for Takeoff, you’ll get your first look at the unique Pilots and Vehicles in the upcoming Rogue Squadron cycle. The Imperial Navy is well known for pouring limitless resources into the Pilots of the Flight Academy and the Fighters they fly. These pilots’ expertise begins with The Empire’s Elite (Ready for Takeoff, 713) objective. When this objective is in play, you gain access to a powerful Interrupt that triggers when a piloted Fighter unit you control would leave play. Instead of being discarded, both the Fighter and the attached Pilot enhancement are returned to your hand, allowing you to return your most feared Fighters, such as “Backstabber” (Core Set, 13) or a TIE Attack Squadron (Core Set, 147) to the table.
The sight of a TIE interceptor sporting bloodstripes can strike fear into the heart of any Rebel pilot. You can bring the notorious starfighters of the 181st Imperial Fighter Wing into play with two copies of the 181st TIE Interceptor (Ready for Takeoff, 715). This unit can effectively support attack or defense, but it’s best at winning the Force to the dark side. While the 181st TIE Interceptor is piloted, its Pilot enhancement contributes its Force icons to your side during the Force struggle, allowing you to gain a bonus without even committing a unit.
In the Flight Academy (Ready for Takeoff, 716), the Imperial Navy possesses a highly efficient means of bringing new Pilots into play. This enhancement provides you with a resource, but it also reduces by one the cost and pilot cost of the first Pilot unit you play each turn. Being able to play Pilots at a discount gets your ships piloted and special abilities activated faster than ever.
You gain another way to bring your Pilots into play with the Stay on Target (Ready for Takeoff, 712) fate card, one of two new fate cards in this cycle. This fate card contributes two Force icons to your edge battle, but it also allows you to put a Pilot card into play from your hand or discard pile as an enhancement on a target friendly Vehicle unit. Not only does this allow you to escape paying the unit’s pilot cost, it lets you bring a Pilot into play in the midst of battle, potentially activating powerful abilities and swinging the balance of the conflict in your favor.
Of course, The Empire’s Elite wouldn’t be complete without a peerless Pilot to lead the squadron, and it gains such a unit in Baron Fel (Ready for Takeoff, 714). This unit bears the pilot (2) keyword, so by paying two resources, you may attach him to any friendly Vehicle. Baron Fel is at his best, however, in the cockpit of a Fighter. While Baron Fel pilots a Fighter unit, every friendly Fighter unit gains elite and edge (1), making any Fighter group a force to be reckoned with. In addition, Baron Fel possesses three Force icons, meaning that if he pilots one of the 181st TIE Interceptors, the Imperial Navy gains a three Force icon bonus to the Force struggle!
Coordinate Fleet Movement
More awaits within the Rogue Squadron cycle than Imperial Fighter squadrons. In this cycle, the Imperial Navy and Rebel Alliance take the spotlight, but every faction receives plenty of powerful new units, enhancements, and events, along with two new fate cards introduced in this cycle. New versions of iconic characters and ships abound, ranging from Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker to the Millennium Falcon and Slave I. Every faction receives new tactics utilizing new and upcoming cards, including the ones described below.
The Rebel Alliance uses the Capital Ship Independence to lead their entire navy in battle, while the Sith Fighter Delta One effortlessly incapacitates unpiloted Vehicle units. On the outskirts of the galaxy, Smuggling Freighters fly relentlessly past enemy shields and blockades. The Jedi may uncover a Lost Master among the forests of Kashyyyk, still maintaining his commitment to the Force, and if a Scum and Villainy pilot is ever forced to Bail Out, you can be sure you’ll face the pilot again on the ground. In the Rogue Squadron cycle, the skill of your best Pilots and Vehicles is on full display, offering countless new strategies for your decks in Star Wars: The Card Game.
Launch Your Starships
Are you prepared to pilot your starfighters to glory? Your intense dogfights, fleet combat, and hyperspace travel begin with the Ready for Takeoff Force Pack in the Rogue Squadron cycle. Look for the Ready for Takeoff Force Pack at your local retailer in the fourth quarter of 2014!
The characters, starships, and situations of the original Star Wars trilogy come to life in Star Wars: The Card Game, a head-to-head Living Card Game® of tactical combat and strategic planning that allows two players to wage cinematic combats between the light and dark sides of the Force.