Salt Cast is a special multi-part blogging series focused on the state of Star Wars: Legion - the sci-fi fantasy tabletop miniatures game set in the Star Wars universe - and in particular the Galactic Empire faction as-of early 2021.
On our journey to enter (and exit) the salt mines of Kessel, we want to discuss and rabble on about the Galactic Empire: one of the first two factions available in Star Wars: Legion, and for the majority of the lifespan of the game largely considered either “the strongest” or “the easiest”, depending who you talk to.
Both of those rankings have largely changed since the introduction of the new Clone War-era factions - the Galactic Republic and Separatist Alliance - and various balance and errata patches to the game.
Empire was introduced as a faction whose primary theme was “start researching how to paint white on YouTube” (that, among other identifying elements of Empire has been largely replaced by the Clones of the Galactic Republic).
In the game, Empire was largely known for:
“Red” defensive saves.
Most trooper units saved on a 5+ (on a D6), Empire saves on 4+.
Range 4 (24”) weapons.
Most units had range 3 (18”); many heroes had range 2 (12”).
Incidental access to the Impact keyword.
A huge threat to entirely “white” save vehicles.
Easy access to aim tokens.
… as well as a slate of units that hugely benefit from them.
Focusing more on shooting the other player off the board
… rather than doing specific objectives.
Expensive heroes with access to largely unique mechanics (Boba, Palpatine).
Having the slowest and least-impactful starter box hero (Darth Vader).
Some of this is largely true today, other bits have changed, been errata’d, or other factions now have easier, more consistent, and/or cheaper access to similar mechanics and features, leaving some Empire players scratching their collective heads: “so, what about Empire?”.
I’d like to introduce the cast, and who will be writing further:
Cody was born in [REDACTED] but really came into existence after moving to Toronto in 2013.
Cody never played miniature games growing up, but it all changed when he visited his local comic store in 2018 following his first year finals. There he not only found the Star Wars Legion Core set, but also a poster advertising a local Star Wars Legion Facebook group. He's taken part in 1 Local Prime, 1 season of Invader League (currently in his second), and 1 season of YBTL as a member of United Empire Legion.
Outside of Legion, Cody has been a Star Wars addict for as long as he can remember. His earliest memory is of him playing with his dad's vintage Kenner action figures. Prior to playing Star Wars Legion, Cody was a semi-pro Rainbow Six Siege player
Cody owns Empire and Clones, but mainly plays Empire (and only plays with Lightsabers). He will be discussing the current status of the Imperial Commanders, how they fare in comparison to other factions, and the ways in which they could be improved
Cody's favorite unit in the Empire is Darth Vader, with his favorite being Obi-Wan for Clones
Matan “Decaf” Lurey
Works and plays in the greater San Francisco/Bay Area, Matan is a current lead maintainer of the Tabletop Simulator mod for Star Wars: Legion, and the host of this blog. He has previously played mostly casual Warhammer 40K and Star Wars: X-Wing, and Star Wars: Legion is the first (and only) game he’s travelled out of state for (Las Vegas Open 2020).
Matan will be shit-posting about the Imperial Corps, and the peril of needing 3 actions on units that can often only manage 1. His favorite Imperial unit is Director Orson Krennic (of course leading a blob of troopers).
Tony “Hunstman” Hunter
Originally from New Zealand and having lived in the States for 16 years, Tony is a founding member of the Colorado based 5280 Legion community. He has played Star Wars Legion since its initial release and is a fanatical Imperial (having only played one game outside the faction in all that time). Tony enjoys playing Legion competitively and learning/improving his play whenever possible. He has had moderate success in local tournaments, previous Invader seasons and has Captained the 5280 Rogue Squadron for the last couple of Yavin Base Team Leagues.
Tony will be focusing on Imperial Operatives in his article: Boba Fett, Bossk and Operative Vader. He'll dissect their strengths, weaknesses, how they compare to similar units in other factions and recommended ways to play each of them.
Unsurprisingly his favorite Empire unit is Boba Fett.
Nocturnal “Noc” Loner
Born and raised in the state of MN and living there for most of his life, Noc is a US native. Noc has been playing Legion exclusively on TTS since around the time of the release of the Krennic and DT expansions, and has devoted most of his playtime to the Imperial and the CIS factions. Enjoying Legion and becoming more competitive in the game, he has participated in 3 IL seasons and played in the last 3 seasons of YBTL. The 2 most recent of which as Captain of Anakin's Daycare Service.
Noc will be dunking on Imperial special forces units in his lovingly crafted overview, and seeing what makes them feast or famine in comparison to similar units across factions.
One of his most favorite units in Legion is General Veers.
Tim “TimitationIrish” Hannon
Tim was born and raised in Long Island, NY, but for the past 12 years has been living in Knoxville, TN.
Tim started playing miniatures in the early days of X-Wing, and has been playing legion since it was released. After playing for several months, he was invited to join his former X-wing compatriots on the “Sunsphere Tactical Attack Brigade (STAB) cast” to talk Legion, and has been active in the community ever since.
Tim has played in many irl tournaments, including GenCon and LVO. Tim has also played in several YBTL’s and Invader Leagues, going 5–1 in season 5.
Tim primarily plays Empire (with a Clone army in secret reserve), and will be discussing their various heavy and support options, including what works, what really works, what’s needed, and what hurts the most.
Tim didn’t really follow directions for this prompt, and listed his favorite unit as a tie between Palpatine and the ATST (with Boba Fett being a close 2nd, even though that would be a 3rd).
What’s to Come
Each of us will be publishing an article focusing on part of playing Empire that specifically feels rather whelming, and will record a special, Empire-focused podcast episode as a 1-off (e.g. “Salt Cast”) after all the articles are complete.
I hope you all enjoy this special edition content. For the Empire!