The Endless Search for Perfect Epic Duels Figures: A History

One of the best things about Epic Duels the game was the figures that came with it.  It’s a marvel that for just $20, you got 31 figures, let alone game boards and cards and a dice and a game.  Only 17 of the 31 figs are painted but the other 14 are nameless minors like Clone Troopers and Battle Droids, so you don’t really mind that they’re not painted.  The 17 that are painted aren’t great, but they’re plenty good enough and if you look at Maul, that’s actually pretty intricate.  We always got the feel we needed to get from these figures.

So, once we started expanding the game, the figures were important to me.  I’ve found multiple ways to collect figures and here’s a stroll through that history.

Two of the first fan-made decks we used were for Qui-Gon & Obi-Wan and for Young Luke & Old Ben.  Note that this early stage, we weren’t yet making decks for ourselves, only contributing to the community and using the decks it would come up with.

So, for figures, we used Star Wars Legos for both character sets.  To be honest they worked just fine and if you have Star Wars Legos or like Legos, it’s a current option for you.

Lego Star Wars Ep I - Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi | Flickr

First, I bought a second, third and fourth Epic Duels set when they were selling them on clearance at Kay-Bee toys for $4.  With those figures and some paint, I was able to create, or mod, some entirely new figures.  It’s really just spare figures (lightsaber parts, etc.), paint, and I found some cheap crayola modeling clay at Target or wherever to make capes, I don’t remember and don’t know what’s available these days, but go to an art supply store and you’ll find something.

Old Ben, Darth Malak and Admiral Thrawn

Next, I got a hold of Star Wars The Queen’s Gambit, another game that came out about the same time as Epic Duels, and uses some similar figures.  We used the Qui-Gon and Padawan Obi-Wan from this set for a long time but eventually moved to the superior Star Wars minis.

We still use this Nute and Droidekas and I really like how the Droidekas are Epic Duels size — a smaller size than their Star Wars minis.

 

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This also allowed me to mod even more figures like creating a Fisto from a Gungan and Luminara from a Queen’s Gambit Padme, to go with Barriss Offee, who is actually a Zam Wessell.  The game board you see there is from the Star Wars Jedi Unleashed game.

So by this point, I’ve got new trilogy figures and I’ve modded a Dooku into a Tarkin, but still don’t have what I need from the old trilogy.  So then, I get going on eBay and start finding old Star Wars figures and Kenner toys sets and that sort of thing:

Notice the pennies propping up the bounty hunters? Also, that 4-LOM is actually a C-3P0 that I modded.

And after a few years of this, I’ve got a pretty good collection of figures.

Lots of KOTOR figures in there.  I can’t find that Bespin Luke figure anymore, which makes me sad.  He’d be perfect for the Bespin Luke deck because he uses a blaster.  Instead I use the Star Wars Mini, which has a lightsaber, which looks great but is confusing.  The second row, starting at the left we have Mara Jade, a Rukh (Wolfsbane from some other game) and a Thrawn.  That’s supposed to be Durge and then Asajj in the third row.  Glad to have proper Star Wars Minis for those.

So then Star Wars minis came out, and suddenly there were figures for every character we could ever want…

…and many figures for characters I’d never even heard of.

During this time, sometimes the figures drove the deck, like they did for Aurra Sing.  Then, as detailed in the last post, the golden age of Star Wars figures finally came to its end when Star Wars Miniatures went out of print, but we still kept making new decks and needed figures for them.  Here are some things I’ve tried.

I picked up Star Wars Monopoly and got these figures for Kylo Ren and Finn.  They are a bit large and the paint job is Epic Duels quality which is to say not great, but still not bad for $25 for both, plus you get a Monopoly game.  You could probably find a used one for $10 or something.

Then I found these Japanese toys for which they had a Rey, Poe and BB-8.  The BB-8 is fantastic and really can’t be replicated or found anywhere else.  Poe, I’m not sure why I bothered because a Rebel Pilot works just as well but he’s a neat piece.

I probably should have gotten the Rey, too, but Leia Bounty Hunter just works so well.

Now it’s getting tough. You can mod off of Star Wars Miniatures, and here I made this Sora Bulq as an example.

The problem is, the minis are harder plastic than Epic Duels and in my experience, not that easy to work with unless you know what you’re doing and have the right tools.  I do and I do, but then ext problem is that minis are getting harder and harder to come by.  It’s easy enough to find a common figure like the Weequay Mercenary, above, and find some lightsabers for him, but trying to find better or any kind of unique figures can get hard in a hurry.  They are no longer sold by hobby stores and are even disappearing from the likes of eBay.  I still was able to scrounge together this group of figures for Rogue One.

Still, this is getting more and more challenging to find figures, and the figures aren’t as good.  I’m not crazy about my Chirrut, or Baze, or K-2SO.  Jyn and Krennic are good, though, and they’re the only ones I play anyways.

Now similarly, I can come up with a Hux and an old Luke, but what about Snoke?  Where do I go for a Tobias Beckett and an Enfys Nest?  What about The Mandalorian and Baby Yoda, for which I’ve got decks for both Epic Duels and Unmatched?  My last post hints at the solution, my next post will go into more detail and I’ll share my full SWED and LOTRED sets of figures!

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