Wave 2 Villain Pack – Kayn Somos

Kayn Somos painted and photographed by Matthew of www.oldenhammer.com

Kayn Somos painted and photographed by Matthew of www.oldenhammer.com

Campaign

Kayn Somos has a big role in the Twin Shadows expansion. Looking at his deployment card, it is immediately clear that he is all about getting the most out of your (Storm)Troopers. He isn’t exactly cheap. Throw in just 12 health for 10 threat cost and no defensive abilities, and it is quite clear he won’t be around for long. His ranged attack with 2 blue and a green die isn’t powerful enough to make a big difference. But if you roll a surge, you can trigger Squad Command giving an adjacent Trooper the focused condition. Positioning is key here though and against the superior mobility of the Rebel heroes, this can be somewhat tricky to set off.

You can also make use of Firing Squad letting up to 2 adjacent troopers shoot at the enemy. This means you can potentially attack 3 times in an activation and give one of your Troopers the focused condition. The real problem is that this quite a lot of setting up. If you can’t pull it off, he quickly goes down, without having too much of an impact.

Looking at his Agenda Set, again there is a clear focus on (Storm)Troopers, but the cards aren’t all that good. Military Presence gives you Stormtroopers as an open group once for 1 Influence. This is similar to Internal Affairs from the core set, but since you only get the effect once, it seems quite a lot worse, even though it is cheaper to buy. Perpetual Reinforcements also only costs 1 Influence, but is again a one time use. Reinforcing a cheap Trooper once is nice, but ultimately feels much weaker than most of the Agenda Cards from the core box.

To recruit Kayn Somos as a Villain for your campaign, you need to win the side mission Strength of Command, which is included in his Agenda Deck. This mission requires map tiles included in the Twin Shadows expansion.

Skirmish

In skirmish, Kayn Somos should be good for the current meta as it rests mostly on trooper lists. However, his high cost means that he is rarely included. There is a skirmish upgrade card on the horizon that could buff him quite a bit, it is unreleased as of yet. Still his pack does have the interesting skirmish upgrade card Rule by Fear. You get to mill through your deck at the start of a skirmish mission, which might be worth the 1 deployment cost. Certainly if you rely on specific command cards, this upgrade might come in handy.

Speaking of command cards, Kayn’s signature command card is Rally the Troops. Giving you another activation in exchange for an action from Kayn is less impressive than other signature command cards. It might even not worth including, depending on your list. Squad Swarm on the other hand seems expensive. But remember: you can use that with any deployment group of which you have more than 1 on the table. Since Troopers are the “in” thing to use in Skirmish right now, this has some valuable appications. Lastly there is Rank and File which gives your Troopers a bit more movement.

Update: With the release of The Grand Inquisitor pack, the skirmish upgrade Advanced Com Systems now enable Kayn to use his Firing Squad on any friendly trooper within 3 spaces, effectively giving you 2 extra shots with your Elite Stormtroopers each turn. Also his Squad Command can throw focus to Elite Snowtroopers very effectively now. It is not broken, but skilled players might be able to use him now instead of him being dead weight in the arsenal of the empire. Because of this, the skirmish rating of the pack is increased from 2/5 to 3/5.

The included skirmish map Tython Meditation Field only uses tiles from the core box.

Model

Aside from a leather shoulder pad, he looks identical to regular Stromtroopers. This does make him easy to paint, but also not that exciting to look at. If you don’t paint him, be careful to mark him properly so you don’t lose sight of him in your Trooper swarm.

Campaign Rating – 2/5 Imperial Orders
Skirmish Rating – 3/5 Imperial Orders