Across the Galaxy has given us quite the crop of new plots to experiment with. So far, the majority of the attention has gone to Double Down and the -1 plots, and rightly so – these plots expand our options tremendously! In the hype over these crazy plots, a potentially excellent plot that has been left behind – Armored Reinforcement (though, to be fair, it has started to get some love since I started writing this post!). In today’s post, I’m going to talk about Armored Reinforcement, and what vehicles might be worth tutoring in at the beginning of the game.
Before I get into some potential options for Armored Reinforcement, I want to evaluate the power level of this plot. One aspect of this plot is the extra resource you get when you tutor in the vehicle – this makes it naturally comparable to the other 3 point 1 resource plots – Profitable Connections and Blockade. These plots are okay, and Profitable Connections in particular has seen some play in top level decks. But these have typically been 2-wide decks. Why? This is because 3-wide lists generally have no problem completing a full 30 point team. This means that, unlike in the 2 wide lists that use these plots, you would almost certainly be giving up a die to run the plot (since most of the time, a second character die costs 3 points) – and 1 resource has proven not to be worth the cost of a die. So the extra resource is not enough to make Armored Reinforcement playable at a competitive level. In order for this plot to see substantial competitive play, the tutoring aspect has to be what puts it over the edge. Thus, today’s post examines what vehicles might be worth giving up a die in order to tutor onto the board at the beginning of the game.
The Firespray-31 is an interesting vehicle – for 4 cost it gives you a good die, but not really a 4 cost die. The Power Action, however, is potentially very powerful. Playing a mod for free (with mod dice already being under-costed) is really powerful, and could allow you to build a powerful board state quickly. The problem is that this vehicle needs to get into play early in order to get sufficient use out of the PA. Armored Reinforcement gets around this issue, allowing you to mulligan for mods and attempt to abuse this vehicle to its full potential.
Similar to Firespray-31, Shadow Caster is much better if you can put it on the table early, simply because it requires mods to function. A moded up Shadow Caster is terrifying, so getting this vehicle into play early via Armored Reinforcement may just be worth it.
If Mauler Mithel is on your team, Black Two becomes a beast of a 3-cost support. 2,3,4 for 1 is no joke. Is it worth giving up the second Mauler Mithel die to guarantee getting this support on the board round 1? It just might be.
X-Wings, as you probably already know, are a scaling vehicle. With 1 in play, it is incredibly bad. With 2 in play they become okay. With 3 or 4 in play they become powerhouses for the cheap cost of two. Thus, in order for X-Wings to be worth it, they have to hit the board fast and furiously. Armored Reinforcement helps with this. If you mulligan hard for 1 of your X-Wings, you only need to grab 1 resource in order to play 2 round one. This, in my opinion, is the best way to get X-Wings online early, and if you want to try to abuse X-Wings I would start with Armored Reinforcement.
Hailfire Droid Tank
Hailfire Droid Tank is one of the most powerful vehicles in the game, in large part due to it’s passive that deals 1 indirect damage every time you play a vehicle. The earlier in the game the Droid Tank hits the table the more potential damage you can produce through its passive. Armored Reinforcement almost guarantees that you can put a Hailfire onto the table round 1. Seems good to me.
Additional Mention: Mods
I think it’s worth mentioning here how Armored Reinforcement can help you abuse mods. The mods we received are criminally under-costed for what they do: just look at the dice on the Dorsal Turret and Triple Laser Turret! And they come with great abilities as well. The trouble with mods, and likely the reason they were costed low, is that you need to have a vehicle on the table first. This limits how many mods you can put in a deck – drawing an early handful of mods without any vehicles would be devastating. Armored Reinforcement gets around this downside of mods by guaranteeing that you can get a vehicle into play Round 1, regardless of your opening hand. So if you want to use mods, Armored Reinforcement can be a great way to assure that you get good use out of them.
The bottom line is that Armored Reinforcement is quite strong. Having a guaranteed tutoring card in the game like this allows you to pull off strategies that are otherwise impossible. Don’t be surprised to see this card at the top tables during Regionals season!