The Licensing Awakens – Star Wars VII and Fantasy Flight

Another piece of tabletop news from last week’s New York Toy Expo was that Fantasy Flight Games have secured a license to Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens and will produce “something”.

Beyond that there wasn’t much detail but at present Fantasy Flight are doing a lot with their existing Star Wars license – with the Living Card game, the roleplay games, miniatures and board games.  In this post I’ll speculate on what the license may mean.

The Card Game

Star Wars: The Card Game is firmly set within the original trilogy cardgame, so I expect it is unlikely to see anything Episode VII-related in the near-term.  An old version of Luke Skywalker battling against Darth Vader seems too incongruous to ignore.

Roleplay Game

The background to the three interlocking roleplay games currently produced by Fantasy Flight is just after the destruction of the first Death Star.  Some elements may be transferable – after all we’re not all that clear on the status quo in the Star Wars Universe in Episode VII, beyond the clear presence of the Empire in the form of Stormtroopers and TIE fighters.

All three of the roleplay games are playable independently, so if FFG do look at something for Episode VII then most likely it will use the mechanics of the existing game, but not relate directly to the timeline used in Edge of the Empire, Age of Rebellion and the yet-to-be-released Force and Destiny.

X-Wing Miniatures Game

The X-Wing miniatures game is likely to accommodate Episode VII easily, as it’s not really time-frame dependant; though has to-date not included any of the prequel/clone-wars ships.  Some of the early wave ships do see less use now, so perhaps MKII X-Wings would bring some Rebel Aces-style updates as well as different models.

Falcon - and the new dish
Falcon – and the new dish

As seen in the teaser, the Millennium Falcon has a replacement dish for the one Lando “lost” in the assault on the second Death Star, so perhaps an expansion featuring this change.  With the introduction of the Scum and Villainy faction that could be an opportunity to add some Scum and Villainy pilots for the YT-1300 – which seems a bit of an oversight given the Expanded Universe which X-Wing draws on extensively features a few YT-1300s that aren’t represented, but could increase the S&V’s options somewhat.

Star Wars: Armada Miniatures Game

The Star Wars: Armada miniatures game isn’t even out yet and I’m inclined to say it probably won’t see anything Episode VII-related for a while; there’s plenty to bring in from the original trilogy.  That said, perhaps FFG might want to capitalise on the new film for their new release?

Star Wars: Imperial Assault Boardgame

Again, Imperial Assault is a new release, just a couple of month’s old so plenty to come from the original trilogy – however it’s not unreasonable to expect that it may include some Episode VII material in the future.  It has the concept of “timeframe” for the campaign and side-missions which allow a limit on when certain missions are played and through restrictions on particular characters (Darth Vader and possibly the Imperial Guard being obvious examples) could accommodate campaigns based on the new film.

Something new?

Fantasy Flight may have something entirely new up their sleeves as well, and it’s likely that’s going to be the best option to capitalise on the tidal wave of publicity which will accompany the new film.  Much of what exists so far are for fairly “hardcore” tabletop gamers – so something aimed more squarely at more casual gamers could come along.

What do you think?

Does my speculation sound about right?  Anything I might have missed?  What would you most like to see?  Let me know in the comments below!

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