Welcome to our Star Wars Shatterpoint Squad Pack reviews. In these articles we’ll look through the contents of these packs and try and break down some of the abilities and tactics you can pull off with these new additions to the game. The first wave of expansion packs available themed around the Galactic Republic during the Clone Wars contains one of the main villains of the time period, Count Dooku alongside Jango Fett and a pair of Magnaguards. If you missed our review of Obi-Wan’s Hello There pack, you can find it here.
We’ve previously covered the overall assembly and painting of the models, but we’ll do a quick overview here as well. Dooku poses strongly, lightsaber out and hand outstretched as if to attack with the force. He can be alternately modeled with Force Lightning crackling around and off his hand. Jango dual wields blasters as if he’s battling on the sands of Geonosis (prior to meeting Mace Windu), and the Magnaguard advance aggressively.
Count Dooku is the height of his powers in the Clone Wars. A powerful Sith, he not only vexes the Republic at every turn with his Separatist Army he also lays schemes years in the making. As a powerful individual his Squad Point value comes in at 7, restricting the units he can bring along. He does, however, provide a solid 4 Force; needed because he is one of the most Force hungry characters released so far.
Leader of the Separatist Army – The more Shatterpoint we play the more important out-of-activation actions become. Accordingly, Leader of the Separatist Army is quite strong. As soon as you draw his card and choose to use him he can make a free Dash and pick an allied unit within Range 3 to make one as well. They do not need to be in the same direction, so you can expand your range of control in multiple directions. Note that this dash is not a move action and thus will not trigger abilities like Mandalorian’s Are Stronger Together.
Surely You Can Do Better – This is an extraordinary ability, perhaps a more defining ability than his Identity ability. Do note that this ability was Errata’d on Day 1 making it more powerful. After the dice are rolled in an attack targeting Dooku you can spend 1-3 force to turn that many Strikes (non-critical) into Failures. Not only does this heavily weaken any attacker, it may lead your opponent’s to ignore the old Count all together.
Twice the Pride, Double the Fall – This ability can be a bit tricky to parse. If an allied character within Rang 2 of Dooku is targeted by a melee attack, and the attack roll contains no Strike results, Dooku can dash over and make a 5 die attack. Notably the “attack roll” is not the natural results of the roll, the “attack roll” is modified by defense dice and abilities. If the defender manages to block all the strike results in the roll, Dooku can activate this ability even if there were Critical strikes remaining. It also means that Dooku can use Surely You Can Do Better to remove any remaining strikes after resolving his blocks to enable Twice the Pride when he is targeted by an attack!
Brave, but Foolish – When any allied Primary or Secondary Unit (including himself) is Wounded, you can refresh 2 Force. This alone is great as Dooku is hungry for Force. Then an allied Separatist Alliance character anywhere on the board can make a free Dash or attack. Note that Wounded characters can be chosen, so you can get a free movement or attack with wounded Mandos or Droids scattered around the board who are then effectively immune to counterattack abilities! Sith mastery over death indeed.
Dooku definitely wants you to run Separatist Alliance models alongside him, as you might expect given his status as its leader, but I don’t think it’s quite as strict as Obi-Wan’s desire to run with clones. A few Separatist models is all you need to regularly trigger his abilities so don’t feel like you need to lock yourself in as more units are released.
Dooku’s two stances are less Offense and Defense, and more Lightsaber vs Force Lightning. Form II Makashi is the one you want to take into Melee combat, and in this form Dooku is a menace. Multiple shoves and/or personal repositions exist alongside gobs of damage and the kind of conditions that really make you worry for your defender’s future. Two crits off a single expertise is amazing. On the defensive side, converting 1 or 2 Criticals into a Failure is already great but it also helps fire Twice the Pride by skipping the part where you have to block a downgraded crit.
His Force Mastery stance turns Force Lightning into a powerful ranged attack, packing your expertise chart with crits and direct damage. This stance also gives Dooku access to some recovers and repositions allowing him to dance around the board.
While Dooku may not be able to match the raw offensive power of Maul, he’s really not that far off. He’s also extraordinarily difficult to kill thanks to his strong defense and Surely You Can Do Better. Your opponent is going to have to use a lot of resources to take Dooku down, and may end up dying themselves first if they bother.
In keeping with his Bounty Hunter nature, Jango Fett is a lone wolf. His abilities make him the most independent of units released so far and he can fit in any squad, not just Dooku or Dark Side squads. Note that while he is a member of the Separatist Alliance he is not a Mandalorian and thus gains no synergies running with Gar Saxon or Bo-Katan’s crews.
Jet Pack – While he is not a Mandalorian in title, his Beskar cosplay gives him a handy Jet Pack. Not much to say here other than spending a force to get a Dash-length move that can end at a higher elevation, even while in combat is probably something you’re going to do every activation.
Capture Wire – Shatterpoint is a game of objective control and a Range 2 pull goes a long way to helping. Pulling an enemy off an objective, then activating Jet Pack to leapfrog them onto the objective can swing a struggle and leaving the character pinned makes it even harder for them to retake. This is the scenario I’m most excited about but it can also be used to move enemies into and out of engagement, bring them into a melee scrum, and more. Jango is a unit you want to activate late in your deck.
Not so Fast – Did you pull someone close to you with Capture Wire? Great! Free damage on their next turn. Not So Fast can be used to finish off an enemy or weaken them a bit for an allied unit. I don’t think this is one you’ll use every game, but it’s one your opponents need to watch out for.
My Client is Getting Impatient – Movement is at a premium, and this ability is more “free” movement. Don’t get stuck in the trap of thinking that this is a bonus for when you make a Focus Action. This is extra movement available to Jango whether you plan to fight or not. Move Action into Focus Action just to advance and jump is something you’ll do regularly, and you can further add your Jet Pack to ensure you’re exactly where you need to be, now ready with your Capture Wire or Not so Fast abilities.
I’m Just Looking to Get Paid – More Force refresh! This triggers whether you wound them with a combat action or your Not So Fast.
While more damage is theoretically available in Melee, Jango Fett is a guy who wants to stay at mid-range to remain flexible. More free movement is available in his combat tree as are opportunities to trigger abilities and reposition opponents.
Jango currently represents the lynchpin to a Control strategy with current models. His influence range is enormous and his Combat Tree will give your opponents (and you, possibly) headaches as you attempt to figure out the best path. Jango allows you to be flexible and reactive, which is good to have. He is, however, extraordinarily force hungry and with a single injury it becomes prohibitably expensive to use him to his fullest potential. Better hope that Beskar holds up!
Magnaguard are primarily body guards you bring along to protect a critical Unit. They carry the Battle Droid and Separatist Alliance keywords making them natural allies for Kalani and any currently released Dark Side Primary.
Protection Protocols – A simple ability that ensures your Magnaguard stay with your primary units no matter what your primary does. Free movement is free movement, though the requirement to move towards the primary limits where they can go. Despite that, there is no range requirement so either of your Primaries can activate this and careful positioning can move these Magnaguard onto a critical objective.
Bodyguard – Cover that does not require terrain or hunker tokens is a nice defensive boost for the model you’re shadowing.
Intercede – Intercede is useful in scrums, where multiple models are contesting and fighting over a single objective. This ensures your more powerful Primary and Secondary units are more likely to live and is great if you’re running squishier units like Kalani.
Because they want to be close to Primaries and Secondaris, Magnaguards don’t expand your control range and they want to be run along side units like Dooku who are a touch slower so the droids can keep up.
Not a lot to write home about here. Their combat is solid, particularly if you can gang up with both droids. Two early pushes mean you can bully opponents off objectives or away from your more powerful units if needed.
This box does not have as clean an identity as Obi-Wan’s squad, but that does make it a more flexible release. The Magnaguard are effective alongside any Primary and are an easy include in any list running Kalani and the B1s. Dooku is a tank who has the firepower to go toe-to-toe with anyone and likely come out on the other end alive. The most flexible is Jango; I think he’s going to initially feel overcosted at 4 PC but I think he has an incredibly high skill ceiling with his ability to position himself nearly anywhere and pull folks off objectives.
Did you miss our review of the Shatterpoint Core Set? Check it out!
Goonhammer Media Partner Danger Planet recently posted a YouTube breakdown of this set, including tactics. Find it here!