Star Wars The Force Awakens introduced us to the First Order - the new incarnation of the Empire (or the thinking that creates Empire-like institutions). The familiar stormtroopers, Kylo Ren, and Captain Phasma's silver kit are now as familiar as pepperoni pizza.
When it comes to SWGOH, the First Order squad is a dangerous offensive-minded team that will soon get reinforcements with The Last Jedi. For the time being, let's focus on the 5 currently available toons and ask the key question:
Are you better off breaking up the First Order and using on other squads?
Captain Phasma - Leader
The First Order has 1 leader - Captain Phasma. Here's all the good news in SWGOH for our favorite 6 foot tall silver stormstrooper:
- Phasma's leadership skill gives you a chance for bonus attacks (double for First Order toons). You can take Phasma into a Squad Arena or Raid battle with some strong attackers and do a lot of damage with some RGN.
- Phasma's got a lot of HP and a lot of defense. This gives her a couple different options for modding, and makes her versatile.
- She's easy to get in Galactic War Shipments. She should be the first toon you farm in there so with any luck, you'll have a fully 7* Phasma in a month or two.
- She can add turn meter and Advantage to allies. One reason you'll see Phasma under another leader is that her special abilities are valuable. In particular, adding her to a slower squad can quickly improve the situation.
So while you can use Phasma in any number of squads, she's at her best as the leader of a First Order squad.
Kylo Ren - The Key
Much as Darth Vader operated alongside the Empire and military stalwarts like Tarkin and Thrawn, Kylo Ren is the force user working with Captain Phasma and the First Order military. This fact, coupled with the intrigue and drama around Kylo being Ben Solo, killing Han Solo and his dismantling of the Jedi Academy promise that he's going to be a force in SWGOH. After a reworking in early 2017, let's discuss why and how Kylo is truly the key for a First Order team:
- Kylo Ren's specials are as good as anyone else in the game. He can take turns dishing out massive amounts of damage, and then hit all enemies with an AOE that simultaneously gives turn meter to all First Order allies. Oh, and it also sets him up to counter attacks. When Zeta'd, Kylo will most likely be your last man standing in a tough battle.
- His basic attack can inflict damage over time (DOT) which makes him a strong Zader team member.
- His HP is outstanding, and he's an above-average attacker and defender. Kylo's built to last.
With Kylo, the question of First Order or not is actually a complex one. Obviously he benefits from Phasma's leadership and he makes other First Order members stronger. But given his toughness and skill set, he honestly works under pretty much any top-shelf leader.
As I mentioned earlier, Zader is an obvious choice as a leader. Boba Fett and 86 both improve Kylo's critical chance and make him a devastating counter-puncher.
And even if the leadership doesn't directly improve Kylo's stats, he can be a chess piece that you build around.
SWGOH First Order
First Order Tie Pilot (FOTP)
Warning - FOTP is a pain to farm.
Good news - he's totally worth it.
FOTP is the first and most important generic First Order toon at this time, so let's take a deeper look at him:
- He does a lot of damage. Think Tie Pilot (Empire) without the AOE, foresight chance, and speed and you end up for FOTP. I know it doesn't sound great yet but stick with me.
- Under Phasma, he gets added bonus attack chances. There's no leader that fits FOTP better than Phasma because he needs bonus attacks.
- His basic attack has a chance to strike twice. Imagine this, FOTP hits an enemy twice during his turn, then gets 2 bonus strikes on top of Phasma, Kylo, or other First Order toon. Huzzah!
- He's aces in Fleet Battles, especially Fleet Arena. His bonus attack chance is carried over to that game mode, so he's a top-level attack ship for most players.
- He's fragile and slow. A shocker, I know! FOTP needs either a protector (First Order Stormtrooper, perhaps?) or lots of extra turns to maximize his damage output.
Keep FOTP under Phasma and you won't regret it.
First Order Officer (FOO)
First Order Officer is the sneaky-fast turn meter guy for this team:
- His skills allow him to grant full turn meter (and Advantage for First Order) to an ally. That means he's replenishing Kylo or FOTP to do some real damage. He also removes buffs with the same skill which is pretty good.
- Most importantly his other special can remove enemy turn meter and reduce the cooldown for First Order allies. More specials = good thing.
- He's the naturally fastest First Order toon which can keep you from getting blown away by a speed team of Rebels or Droids.
- He literally does very little otherwise. But at least he's relatively easy to farm in Squad Cantina Battle shipments.
FOO is the perfect example why First Order teams were shied away from at first. It takes time to get him and he is as useful as AC in Antarctica when not teamed with Phasma and other First Order toons. If you don't have at least 4 First Order toons, he'll never see the light of day.
But once you plug him in with the others, he accentuates their offensive prowess to gain bonus attacks and rack up specials.
First Order Stormtrooper (FOST)
Ah, FOST. Such an absolute pain to farm, and that's most important. But if you've put in the energy and waited 2+ months, this is what you get with FOST:
- Legit tank to protect FOO and FOTP. He soaks up hits and keeps friends clean in battle.
- Another chance for bonus attacks under Phasma. Continuing the theme, he's another gun to add to the party.
- He can counter-attack, but it's not great.
- Imagine Stormtrooper Han without his best attribute (granting turn meter to all allies every time he's hit) and that's what FOST is.
Much like FOO needs Phasma to be useful, FOST is your best shot at keeping FOO and FOTP alive under a Phasma lead. He'll likely be your 5 First Order toon, and once you have the band together, they're a lot of fun with bonus attack after bonus attack.
Future-proof First Order
The most important factor for First Order toons is the upcoming The Last Jedi movie since it promises additional team members and a possible rework of the existing gang. So, if you're ready to go with these 5, you'll be sitting pretty when all the changes happen. It also didn't hurt that First Order teams were required to unlock the legendary BB-8 which we'll cover in the Droids guide.
There's no reason not to get Phasma and then work on Kylo Ren. They're both suitable for multiple teams, and will fit any style you need while working on FOTP. Once you've got 3 First Order Toons, I say you bring them back together.
Phasma is Lennon, Kylo is McCartney, and you can pretty much stick any other team members with them and be pleased with the results.