Are you looking for something more narrative than card games or video games can give you? Are you excited to make your way through the Star Wars Universe, dodging blaster fire, piloting ships, and making deals with Hutts? Have you ever wanted a more interactive cinematic journey through the Star Wars mythos? Then we might have something special here for you.
Welcome to TAY Board Game Night. Each week I’ll introduce you to a new tabletop game to try out, throw in a short blurb about why you should play this game, and then highlight some alternate playstyles or expansions for you to try. This week is Edge of the Empire.
Edge of the Empire is a tabletop Roleplaying game set in the Star Wars universe. In the same vein of other RPGs like Dungeons and Dragons or Shadowrun, you’ll create a custom character with their own unique abilities and persona. Along with several other players and one playing as the Game Master you’ll embark upon an adventure through the very same movies we all know and love.
In EotE, you’ll be playing the role of some of the more seedier elements in the Star Wars universe. Bounty Hunters, Slicers, and of course, Smugglers are just a few of the careers you’ll get to choose from. Each career will give your character unique skills and talents to help you group survive in the dangerous Outer Rim. Of course, there’s also a full compliment of fan-favorite species to choose from. Each character will come with a certain amount of Obligation, a mechanic that can help you get from place-to-place, but will have your character needing to return favors in-game, be it a simple deal with a Hutt, or something far more sinister.
If you haven’t noticed, Fantasy Flight Games Star Wars RPG isn’t like most other rpgs, where the goal is kill and loot, or to simply place characters in various challenges to complete. The goal here is to try and make a very cinematic feel to the action. To that end Edge of the Empire employs a set of unique dice that at first glance can look very intimidating. Theres very little numerical values to be rolled in this game, no ‘target numbers’ to be hit to determine success. Instead the dice will roll a number of ‘Successes’ or ‘Failures’ which will cancel each other out, make it out of the roll with at least one Success and your action succeeds!
Thats not all, some dice add advantages or disadvantages, little perks that can make up for a failed roll, or bring a drawback to a success. Perhaps your blaster hit a Stormtrooper square in the chest, but then he ends up dropping a priceless artifact in the fall. In another instance you may fail to jury-rig a speeder together, but managed to score some extra salvage that could be used later. Overall these dice mechanics make the game feel more like a story, with all their ups and downs. Those with a flair for the dramatic will enjoy it, while theres plenty still here for the min-maxers and combat junkies.
There are two other fully realized games that use the same system as Edge of the Empire, and are fully compatible; Age of Rebellion and Force and Destiny. If the thought of a more military style game where you take the Empire head on sounds appealing, you’ll want to look into Age of Rebellion. If you find the lack of Force users in the other two games disturbing, you’ll want to look into Force and Destiny, where you’ll take control of a Jedi on the run from the Empire’s inquisitors. Each game in the Star Wars RPG series can crossover with the others, and each helps make the others richer. They all come with new and interesting species, careers, equipment, enemies, and more. All of them cover unique aspects of the setting and campaign styles that help enrich the others and make it feel like a larger universe. If you’re not sure you want to take the plunge into a whole RPG system, try out one of the various Beginner Boxes. I’m certain you won’t be disappointed.
Overall each Star Wars RPG book comes with a plethora of content for players and game masters. You can even find detailed write-ups on the galaxy as a whole for those just looking for more background on the setting. Each of these books are gorgeous and come with lots of new and beautiful artwork to help set the scene, get players excited, and encourage awesome moments.
Don’t forget to check out my older TAY Board Game Night posts about tabletop gaming, news, and reviews. Have any questions or news? Suggestions? Tweet me@Eon_Blackcraft or leave a comment below!