Star Wars Outer Rim vs. Imperial Assault vs. Rebellion


After reading over all of the recommendations from , I watched one video for each of the three games mentioned: #Star Wars: Outer Rim, #Star Wars Imperial Assault, and #Star Wars: Rebellion. Here are my first impressions/my first gut reactions:

Outer Rim

I was actually a little surprised that this is the newest game amongst the three. Maybe it's because of all of the cardboard but it had a dated look to it. At first glance, the gameplay doesn't seem as gripping or fun as the other two games. And most of all, it's the least attractive in terms of theme because bounty hunters, mercenaries, and smugglers are so far removed in the latest sequel trilogy (which is what got my wife interested in Star Wars). I can't imagine my wife liking the theme and I also don't feel much connection to it either.

Imperial Assault

To me, this looks like the best game for a "surface level" Star Wars fan. The gameplay looks the most fun in a way that is more lighthearted and adventurous, and comes with great minis that evoke the theme. But it also comes with several concerns:

1. I'd only want to play this co-op and while there is an app for that, I'm not sure how compelling it will be going against a bot especially since this wasn't an original part of the game.

2. I'm not sure how fiddly this game could come off to us while handling all of the different units, tokens/modifiers, app, etc.

3. My wife and I typically play games at a slightly slower pace than average estimations. Add to this the fact that it's a longer setup game than most games in our collection, it might be a stretch on our preferred time limit (under 2 hours). But, at least at first glance, the experience seems worth it and that's how I feel about #Clank! Legacy: Acquisitions Incorporated too.


Seems like a great game but three things stood out:

1. Too long (as many of you pointed out)

2. The way combat is resolved seems rather disappointing/anti-climatic (apparently this is addressed in an expansion)

3. I see that this game was marketed as telling your own Star Wars story. And it seems to accomplish this by having players make decisions that lead to events that are completely jumbling up the known Star Wars timeline. I really like this idea but it also made me think that it would be nice if there were a Star Wars themed #Clank! Legacy: Acquisitions Incorporated. Clank! Legacy features a scenario book that players will constantly reference whenever an event is triggered, and the event presents players with a number of choices that will impact that game session which will then trickle down to influence all future sessions. It's lighthearted yet great at building up the world and I liked that a lot.

Final Thoughts

Imperial Assault seems to be the right call for us. I don't see this happening for at least a year, but there's potential and that's the furthest any mini game has ever gotten in my book haha

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Supporter9 months ago

Well, I guess this helps you not make any more boardgame purchases this year....LOL

Owner9 months ago

Yeah, for next year, I'm planning on only getting a few games that I know for sure will get lots of plays. I just want to get in a lot more plays in on the ones I have. So "riskier" games aren't in my shortlist :)

Supporter9 months ago

That sounds principled.

9 months ago

That sounds like a good plan, I am in a similar position that I want to get more plays of the games I do have, although the Pandemic has severely limited my ability to do so

9 months ago

Nice, I am sure you'll have a great time with it!

Supporter9 months ago

I have no played the other games but I do think IA does a good job of simulating your own Star Wars story (outside of space battles).  So I think it's a great one to immerse yourself in the other Star Wars Universe.

I grew up on Star Wars and read all the books before it started becoming really popular and Disney bought everything, so telling my own Star Wars story is fun sometimes.

Even though right now it's at the bottom of my play list, that's really only because we've played through a whole campaign and a half so we've played a lot more IA than other games that I own.

Owner9 months ago

IA is more attractive to me than Gloomhaven theme-wise, so I just wish there were a Star Wars equivalent of #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion. That would be so awesome :)

I like the idea of playing as a single character like in IA and Outer Rim, as opposed to a sprawled out game like Rebellion. I also think IA captures more of the entertainment-focus of the new trilogy, even though it's not deep in theme. And that's really what I'd want out of a Star Wars game I could play with my wife, especially if it keeps it at a reasonable time.

Supporter9 months ago

Well I need to remind you that I am SUPER happy that you are going to try some of my favorite games. I love IA. It's incredible. I hope you guys have as much fun with it as I have. 

Owner9 months ago

I read your IA vs. Gloomhaven comparison article again a while back. I think I'd have more fun with IA just purely because of the theme haha

9 months ago

Great, looking forward to hear how your co-op'ing with your wife will go!


Owner9 months ago

Thanks! I think it'll be a longg time until I make the purchase (and it might not even happen), but I hope it does haha

Supporter9 months ago

Wow, I like this surprise resolution haha. I can totally see why the theme on Outer Rim wouldn't connect with your wife since she's coming from the new triology. As for Imperial Assault, I do share some of concerns but if you watch a few videos on gameplay and are still up for those cool minis then that's a win!

Owner9 months ago

IA seems so fun! I enjoy #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion but having a Star Wars themed one would be so great. I wonder if getting into this game would make me want to get the expansions haha

5 months ago

Gloomhaven is great and works well on pc but IA will be smoother gameplay, less AP and less things to do to handle a combat; it's a bit more streamlined. If Gloomhaven mechanics were ok for you and your wife; IA will fot like a glove qua complexity

Supporter9 months ago

That's a great point about gloomhaven! Hope to hear from your first foray into star wars games at some point hehe. ANd yes, you will definetly buy expansions haha. Its a slipery slope.

Supporter9 months ago

It's an amazing game. Love it so much. 

Supporter9 months ago

Obviously these are all super amazing games but I'm surprised by your dismissal of Outer Rim. I think it has everything you are looking for in a game. It plays in the right time, it's super thematic, and you have a good amount of interaction between players and it has a really good solo mode. Could you elaborate more on why you don't think it would be a good fit?

I think if you do end up getting IA it won't really be what you are looking for. It has a lot of aspects that you normally shy away from - elaborate set-up being the biggest component. I mean I would be totally thrilled if you guys ended up loving it because it's one of my absolute favorites (clearly because I have spent a lot of money on getting almost everything for the game) but it just doesn't seem like something you would normally go for. 

Rebellion is a total beast and the best game I've ever played. But it takes a really long time to play. And the expansion is mandatory because combat is really wonky in the base game. But it's by far my favorite game ever. 

Owner9 months ago

My first impressions were based on watching review videos and skimming through playthrough videos. In general, they all seemed like good games, but comparatively, Outer Rim came off as the one that fits us the least because of the theme and focus of gameplay. For surface level Star Wars fans, a game focused on bounty hunters/mercenaries/smugglers would be very outside of what you'd expect when you think of a Star Wars game. She's never even seen a bounty hunter. And same goes for me that the theme doesn't interest me as much as the other two games.

What I'm wanting is a game that features many of the Star Wars references that are commonly known among anyone who's watched TV--lightsabers, blasters, droids, stormtroopers, Darth Vader, Jedi, etc.

IA seemed like the best and safest game that we'd enjoy together. It gave the impression of just a very fun game where you can be a part of the Star Wars universe. It seemed like the most immersive game in terms of character focus and I like that. And as you said, setup and length of gameplay will likely be an issue so I'd only get the game after doing more research. I gotta say though, I am way more attracted to this than the theme of #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion, and wish there were a retheme of Jaws of the Lion for Star Wars.

9 months ago

#Mos Eiseley: Jaws of the Sarlacc - coming to an FLGS near you!

Owner9 months ago

I had to look that one up xD

9 months ago

Haha, maybe one day

Premium User9 months ago

I've never played any Star Wars game nor have I watched any Star Wars movie that I can remember at least. I thought about it a month or so ago when my fiancé was trying to watch them all on Disney+, but it just seemed like too much of a time commitment for me.

That being said, I'm curious about your process for finding new games for you and your wife to try. I watch video play throughs and reviews on games and am constantly thinking about it in terms of who I could play with that would most enjoy it. Of course right off the bat if it doesn't interest me I don't think about any of that lol. How about you? What do you look for to clue you into if your wife will like a game or not? Reading your thoughts I find it interesting you found faults with all 3 games but are still willing to try one out in the future. What if the games a flop with her after you get it?

Owner9 months ago

Ah, so the main purpose of this post was to report back on my comparison of the three games that were recommended in a previous post. They all seemed like great games so I focused on the potential minuses to show which one seemed to have the best potential. I still won't be getting any of these games until maybe a year later or more, or possibly never. We haven't been gaming as often after things got busy so I'm more focused on limiting acquisitions and (1) get more plays in on the games we already love, (2) only get 2-3 games in 2021 that will either get lots of plays with her or have great potential to be a game that I'll solo often.

In general, I use the games we own as a jumping point. Knowing the why's behind the games she likes, loves, or were misses helps me know what her gaming preferences are. And from all of our experiences so far, I know she likes these aspects in board games:

1. Weight rating sweet spot is around 2.8-3.7. Midweight games go well for us. Lighter games don't hold her interest as much and heavy games are too involved, long, and have way too many rules

2. She doesn't like games that are highly independent/solitaire

3. She likes games where you can feel and see progression. Instead of being static, a game that gives off the feeling of upgrading, building, or sense of movement will go well.

There are other things I've noticed, but it's pretty easy for me to picture her preferences because they actually align with mine quite closely.

Premium User9 months ago

Gotcha. It all makes more sense now lol.

I think generally speaking my fiancé likes games that I like too, but I would attribute that to me introducing her to the hobby. Barring now your purchases in 2021 actually go, I think I should try to take a page out of your book re buying 2-3 a year. That sounds like such a great way to make sure you only get things you know you'll love 

Supporter9 months ago

I grew up living and breathing Star Wars. I can't imagine not ever seeing them! 

Premium User9 months ago

Haha I mean I guess it is kind of crazy

5 months ago

FYI,  I haven't played imperial assault or rebellion,  however what I know about them,  rebellion is pretty complex and very long to play.  IA for two player means you either get the app to do coop or you are against each other. And while a single mission might be at that two hour mark a campaign is several missions.

I have outer rim, got it for Christmas.  With 2 players you can easily get a full game in at the 2 hour mark.


what I love about outer rim is it is a sandbox game.  There is no one way to play:  want to be a smuggler and win by taking illegal cargo,  great,  want to be a bounty hunter?  Great!  Want to do jobs?  Go for it.  Want to work on your character goal or ship goal,  awesome!   There isn't a single strategy that gets you the same place.   It might not have as big of a narrative focus but it has a lot of options.

modding your character and ship can be fun too if you want to go with a more battle heavy play style though you can win with relatively few battles.  

just based on what you say don't let the "not main characters" throw you off,  you have Han, Lando, Boba Fett, Jyn Eros (Rogue One) of characters you can play.  And canto blight is in it as well if you are big on recent movies.

Linked Games
Star Wars: Outer Rim
Star Wars: Rebellion
Star Wars Imperial Assault
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