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arica
image from Wizards of the Coast

Arica
Imperial Entanglements
#11

Date Reviewed: June xx, 2009

Ratings:  Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale 1 being the worst.
3 ... average. 5 is the highest rating.

100 pt: 1.75
200 pt: 3.00

 

Killer_Nacho
Arica, 31 points
Faction: Imperial
HP: 70
Attack: 9
Defense: 18
Damage: 10

Abilities: Unique, Cunning Attack, Hand of the Emperor, Sniper, Stealth, Twin Attack

Force 3, Blaster Barrage

So we finally get another Imperial Mara Jade (known as Arica), and the question is: Is it good? She does have a long list of quality abilities, but her stats and somewhat high point cost could turn people away from her. Let's examine.

As a 31-point non-Commander, she should be able to do a lot of damage for your squad and stick around for a reasonable amount of time. However, her stats are dissapointing. While 70 HP is infinitely better than 60 HP, it is still somewhat low for 31 points. Also, her bad +9 attack and average 18 defense don't really provide reasons to use her, either. To make matters worse, her base damage is a very low 10. She does have a few ablilities to make her a better shooter, though. Arica has access to Cunning Attack, Twin Attack, and Sniper, which, combined, makes Arica a legitimate shooter. Cunning Attack is the ability that gives you +4 attack and +10 damage against enemies who have not activated. This means Arica should be among the first in your squad activated to take advantage of this boost. This allows her to have a better +13 attack and recieve that crucial 20 damage. Combined with Twin Attack, Arica's maximum damage potential for a turn becomes a pretty good 40, if you can get the Cunning Attack to work. Arica also gets Sniper, which allowers her to hit units she otherwise wouldn't be able to (Although Sniper is really just a bad version of Accurate Shot, in my opinion, which would've been much better for Arica). She also gets Stealth, which allows her to stay hidden around the board as she picks apart your opponent's non-activated army. And Stealth is always a valuable thing to have.

Arica also has quite a few Force abilities. She starts off the match with 3 force, a pretty high ammount for a non-Jedi force user. She also, like her original version, has Hand of the Emperor, which means you can combine her with the Rebel Storm Emperor Palpatine and use one force of his and one force of Arica's once per turn, which acts almost like Master of the Force 2. Her one force ability is Blaster Barrage, which could be useful but isn't quite as useful as many people originally thought. One thing you need to remember about Blaster Barrage is that it still takes normal firing rules into account. What this means is you still cannot attack enemies in cover that aren't the closest unit in cover. A skilled player won't give you the chance to get off a Blaster Barrage against a large sum of his army. Still, when combined with Emperor Palpatine, her ability to use Blaster Barrage and still reroll an attack (or reroll two attacks in one turn) will come in handy.

Overall, while she is frail and her stats aren't amazing, she is a pretty quality figure. With Hand of the Emperor, she becomes a legitimate choice to use in combination with Emperor Palpatine, and she can still do some major damage without him, too. However, her naturally low stats seem to be the downfall of this figure. But she is definatly worth a try if you are trying to throw an Emperor Palpatine-based Imperial squad.

100 points: 1.5/5 - I wouldn/'t bother with Arica here. In a format dominated by large sweepers, you don't want to spend 31 points on a frail shooter. Nor do you want to spend another 40 on Emperor Palpatine. Also, since the number of opponent activations is somewhat smaller in 100 points, the chance to be able to use Cunning Attack is greatly lowered, and is determined by initative near the end of the game.

200 points: 3/5 - Here she becomes legitimate. Emperor Palpatine from Rebel Storm is still a potent piece here (Force batteries never go out of style!) and the 31 points isn't as big of a blow. Try her out if you have her!
Jonathan Arica

Stats:
Cost - 31
HP - 70
Defense - 18
Attack - +9

Abilities:
-Unique (Counts as Mara Jade)
-Cunning Attack (+4 Attack and +10 Damage against an enemy who has not activated this round)
-Hand of the Emperor (This character can spend her own Force points once per turn and spend Force points from a character named Emperor Palpatine once per turn)
-Sniper (Other characters do not provide cover against this character's attack)
-Stealth (If this character has cover, she does not count as the nearest enemy for an attacker farther than 6 squares when choosing targets)
-Twin Attack (Whenever this character attacks, she makes 1 extra attack against the same target)

Alright, this piece is an updated version of the old Mara from all the way back in Rebel Storm. For an extra 11 point the stats are the same, except for an extra 10 hp (which gives her an extra hit from either 20 or 30 damage pieces, which is good). She also gains twin attack, stealth, and sniper. The stealth gives a bit more chance for you to get in close to use her gimmick (blaster barrage + twin + sniper), but even with twin she'll only be picking off little amounts of hp on each piece, and only hit about half of her shots against high defense characters. Swarm squads are possibly going to have some issues with the massive amounts of shots she can let loose, especially since they can't hide behind eachother anymore. The Emperor's Hand ability has some use, but with the hp that Arica has, she probably won't be around long enough to need to rely on Palpy's force points. I think that Arica could be used if you wanted to, but personally I think there are better options due to the circumstantial nature of her use (she is only really effective against swarms).
Josh

Arica (Imperial, 11/40, Rare—Imperial Entanglements; 70HP, ATT9, DEF 18, DAM 10, DEPLOY 31)

This version of Mara Jade is designed to reflect her days undercover in Jabba’s Palace. On the surface, she doesn’t appear to be that much different than her Rebel Storm counterpart, but much like the Emperor’s Hand disguised as a dancer, looks can be extremely deceiving.

Arica is 11 points more expensive than the original Mara and save a boost of 10 hit points, her stats remain unchanged. It should be noted that extra 10 hit points is pretty important since it’s going to mean that hitting her with 20 or 30 points of damage, your opponent will still need to take an extra attack against her to take her down. However, like many other characters, for that 11 point increase you’re picking up a few good powers the original never had. First of all, Arica brings Twin Attack along which is always a plus since it gives her two attacks on a target even after moving. What’s going to make that extremely nasty is when you use it with one of her Blaster Barrages. Like Mara, she also comes equipped with Cunning Attack, which combined with Twin and a Blaster Barrage can make her pretty a pretty dangerous foe. The key power, however, that makes Arica more worth the points than Mara is her access to Stealth. Run her with a Bith Vigo and she’s got access to Evade or run her with the Rodian Vigo and she can get a form of the much-beloved “super Stealth.” While she doesn’t have Force Renewal, she still keeps the Hand of the Emperor power which lets her draw from Palpatine’s Force point reserves and now that you have two options for a Force-battery Palpatine, you won’t really want to run her without her master anyway. Picking up Sniper can also be helpful if you wind up in a situation where she can Blaster Barrage (or shoot, I know I’m really looking at the Barrage a little too much but she’s a pretty basic shooter if you ignore the Barrage) past some of your own power hitters to add some damage.

While the version is an improvement over the original Mara, it still has the same problems that she did back in the days of her first release. An effective grunt screen makes Blaster Barrage a pretty weak power and that’s the only named Force power she has. If your opponent has a chance to move before your Barrages, they can really hamper her effectiveness there. Her defense score of 18 is definitely on the weak side; however thanks to Stealth if you build her properly that can be less of an issue than it was on Mara. If you aren’t able to use her Cunning Attack on your opponent’s larger targets, she’s definitely going to have problems thanks to her weak +9 attack bonus.

100 POINTS: While she’s a decent shooter, you’re going to be pretty limited on points and activations if you decide to build her with an Emperor for a Force battery. That means you won’t be able to bring the beat stick you almost need to survive in a 100 point game. However, if you’re just running her alone (bearing in mind you’ll wind up with a limited number of Blaster Barrages) she’s not that bad but she’s really not that good either. Score: 2

200 POINTS: Here, where there’s a lot more room for support from the Emperor, she’s a lot more effective. While she’s more effective with access to the Emperor’s stash of Force points, that still doesn’t make her a very good piece. While she’s definitely an improvement over the original Mara Jade, she still doesn’t bring enough to the table to be a great piece for the Imperials so, to be honest, your 31 points might be better spent on some lower level Imperial commanders to synergize with your squad better. Score: 3

 


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