14 March 2013

Crew Members- Chewbacca

This post regarding Crew Members is part of a larger article regarding Wave 2 listbuilding- the rest of the posts n this series will be available in the coming weeks as I'm revealing a post or two per day on the various topics in that larger article. For more info, click the "Ship List Articles" tab at the top of the page or simply click here.

Chewbacca (4)
Card Text: When you are dealt a Damage card, you may immeidately discard that card and recover 1 shield. Then, discard this Upgrade card.

Usage in game: Damage mitigation; "Nuh-uh!" opportunity capitalization
Action?: No

Breakdown: Using even a moderately tooled-up YT-1300 is likely to force you into a 3-ship list. As such, one of the inherent playability issues incurred is keeping those ships alive long enough to even the odds against lists with more ships and their built-in potential to inflict more damage per round.

But I digress.

In any case, Chewbacca as a Crew Member is there to keep your ship on the table just a little bit longer. How much longer? Well, two Damage cards longer to be exact. Receiving a Damage card can trigger Chewie if you want it to, and when it does, it functions in the way you'd expect- you not only discard the Damage card you just received (one Damage card) and get a Shield Token back (two Damage card, ah, ah, ah). For four points, it's a pretty good trade-off; after all, Shield Upgrade by itself is 4 points. Chewbacca gives you the same end result functionality and lets you mitigate a Damage card for the same cost.

So why wouldn't you take Chewie over a Shield Upgrade? 

Well, first and most obviously, you can only take Chewie on a Rebel YT-1300, so everyone else is SOL. Secondly, if you take him as crew, you can't take him as a pilot of the YT-1300. Last, he does take up a Crew Member slot (although, each of the YT-1300 pilots have two Crew Member slots available to them, so this probably isn't an issue). 

One question I've seen floating around on the Rules Questions section of the Forum is does Crew Member Chewbacca mitigate a crit?

Short answer? Yes he does.

A crit is still a Damage card, just a face-up Damage card. If you go through the 7 Combat Steps in the rulebook, you'll see what I'm talking about.

Really, in my mind, there's no downside to this guy. He's very reasonable for the points, even being a one-shot use as he's automatic and doesn't require an Action which makes him a one-shot that 100% goes off unless of course you never get down to your hull. I think you could make Chewbacca 5 or 6 points and I'd probably still take a pretty hard look at him.

Does he work in your list? It's fairly simple to determine- does your YT-1300 get keyed on a lot by the enemy? Chewbacca might just buy you another round to get the odds evened up between your low ship count list and your opponent's higher one. I think a lot of people focus on the damage potential of these ships when they initially start coming up with listbuilds, but I find most people will ultimately be better off focusing more on keeping their ship alive rather than wringing another Attack die out of a build or another re-roll. Find the points and give him a shot sometime. I'd be surprised if you're disappointed.


  1. I concurRRRaaawwwwWRRRR rrfff rrrffff. *sorry*

  2. That's so funny I can't come up with an adder joke. Nice one Chris! :)

  3. I didn't think about the fact that he's the same as a shield upgrade. Nice!

    I agree that too many people focus on damage. As an Imp, I tend NOT to take Howlrunner for the simple fact that everyone kills her in the first go through. Why spend that many points when she's just going to die without getting much use? I'm kind of feeling the same way about Tie Interceptors, too. Everyone is so scared of them, they don't last long.

  4. I think that's where you kind of have to look at your local meta and respond accordingly. If everyone in your neck of the woods is scared to death of Howlie and will do whatever it takes to get her off the board quick, then not taking her might be the best thing to do.

    ... well, either that or take her and try to use her to force your opponent to do things they wouldn't normally do. Then of course, exploit like you're the manager of a boy band.

    You ever think about tacking a Shield Upgrade on her just for kicks?

  5. Actually, the most interesting one for me deals with Howlrunner w/ Stealth Device and a Black Squadie with Draw Their Fire. Here's the logic.

    When someone is hitting against 4 defense dice, the last one to be removed is a critical. Chances are that the critical is the last one left. Draw Their Fire from the Squadie takes the critical and keep's HowlRunner's Stealth Device intact.

    Of course, if you have more than 1 critical left, it's a mute point and a big waste.

  6. Note that Chewbacca can be triggered between two damage cards from the same attack. Thats because damage cards are not treated as a whole but take effect one after another. I think it's written in the rules in bold for this reason.