I was a little skeptical of the Star Wars Minis game when it first came out. As a skirmish game, the rules seemed like they were cobbled together and tacked onto the framework of the D&D Miniatures skirmish rules. Still, it was awesome building a small army of tiny plastic storm troopers. Each expansion refined the rules, added new twists, and generally improved the game. Some high-quality maps made a galaxy of difference too. In the last two years of its life, SWM was among the best collectible miniatures games ever, with innovative design used to create a strategically and tactically interesting game built around the inherent classic space opera theme.
As with the Star Wars RPG, it’s a little sad to see the minis game go. Masters of the Force allowed the game designers to revisit all the favorite classic characters, and create a bunch of awesome monsters too. You have to admit, though, that those classic characters have been revisited many times in the game’s lifespan. Maybe it was best to go out now, before the well ran a little too dry.
So now there will be no more print runs of Star Wars minis. The supply of 3/4″ tall Ewoks currently extant will have to satisfy worldwide demand now and forever. The supply curve will gradually descend over the years and decades until a booster pack of Alliance and Empire costs $500. Why will prices climb? Because there will always be people who love Star Wars. There will always be people out there who want to recreate the Battle of Hoth, or build their own miniature version of the 501st. Yes, someday some other game will probably come along to fill that void, but until then, these minis are all we’ve got.
Here then, is my grand salute to Star Wars Miniatures. I took every single mini I’ve acquired over the years (by no means an exhaustive collection) and put them all together on one logic-defying, era-spanning, time-bending map. Look carefully and you can spot a bunch of legendary characters and at least one classic movie moment. I just wish I’d been able to get my hands on an AT-AT. Below is the master image (clumsily composited from two photos) showing the entire display. Below that is a gallery of close-ups and artsy photos of the many minis involved in this melee. May the Force Be With You.
By the way, Robot Viking sponsor TrollandToad.com has a sale on SWM Starter Sets. It’s a seriously excellent deal and a great way to get into the game. They’ve got boosters and singles too — those Alliance and Empire boosters are actually only $10.