December 18, 2014

I Played Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures On the Best Table Ever

Star Wars fans continually amaze me. It's a subject I've touched on before, and I don't imagine I'll tire of repeating it. They channel their passion into all forms of art, including custom gaming tables. A pal of mine, Ruark Dreher, took his enthusiasm and engineering skills and designed an epic (only word for it) custom table for Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures. Look:

Isn't it beautiful? I featured the table on a few weeks ago, and you can read all the details there but in short: The playing space is appropriate tournament size at 3 feet by 3 feet. The edges of the table are covered in logos. And that acrylic playing surface? It lights up in a few different colors. There are lots of little touches too that make the game more organized and easier to play. I learned this firsthand when I played X-Wing Miniatures for the first time ever on this table. I promise I didn't drool on it.

I've been meaning to play Fantasy Flight Games' Star Wars miniatures game since it was released but was intimidated by it for some reason. I think I have an aversion to the phrase "expansion pack," and the game has plenty of those. The expansion packs aren't a barrier to entry though, and in fact, you can have a fine game with just the starter pack/core set.

A photo posted by Amy Ratcliffe (@amy_geek) on

For my first game, I was spoiled. Not only did I play on the beautiful table pictured above, but I was able to choose from a wide selection of ships, pilots, and upgrades. Ruark has a rather impressive collection of X-Wing Miniatures game pieces. He also has fancy touches like a tower that holds the movement pieces, dice cups, and plastic lids that are used for storing the game or rolling dice on. I also played with several people (we played in teams) that know the game and were able to walk me through the basics. I have a lot to learn, but it was relatively simple to get the basics down and start playing. I wasn't expecting the mechanics to be easy to pick up, but I was wrong. Now, once you get into complex moves, strategy, and upgrades... that gets more tricky. I'll get there one day.

And I truly will because after playing one 3.5 hour game, I'm hooked. I'm drawn to the fact that you can play with two players or in teams, I like the game play, and I really appreciate the details on the miniatures. When you're not actively playing, the ships are more than nice enough to display with your other collectibles. I've already purchased the core set and the Millennium Falcon from my local gaming store (I'm not ready to play with the Falcon just yet, but it's a gorgeous model and I've heard it's been out of stock and hard to track down for a while). I'm also already looking into playing mats because if I'm going to play X-Wing Miniatures, I want to do so on a starfield. I'm going to try out a custom one with a starfield printed on a vinyl material. It was just over $10 to print so we'll see how it works out.

If you're intrigued, you can get the core set on Amazon along with plenty of expansion packs. Check your local gaming store for more options and accessories. I promise it's simple to learn and a blast to play.

Do you already play X-Wing Miniatures? Tell me about your ships, your favorite sites for tips and tricks, and what sort of play mat you use (if any)!


  1. So I've been a big fan of X-Wing Miniatures since it launched, and have gotten several of the expansion packs, but no one around me plays! And it's just complex enough that my wife doesn't enjoy it.

    Even so, I think the ships are fantastic -- I just got a couple YT-2400 Light Freighters (aka Dash Rendar's Outrider). It's been one of my favorite ships since it was first introduced in Shadows of the Empire, and I was surprised they brought a relatively obscure EU ship to the game. That, and ships like the Tie Defender or Kyle Katarn's ship (name escapes me at the moment)... They've done a lot of work on this game and, while it's a bit on the expensive side, I love it!

    Post a review of your mat (or a mat you end up liking)-- I think I could probably convince the wife to give it another stab, if I found an interesting enough/quality play mat.

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