Twilight Imperium: The Sardakk N’orr

From the strategy guide written by Stefan Sasse

Racial Ability:

  • You receive +1 to all combat rolls.

Starting Techs:

  • Hylar V Assault Laser
  • Deep Space Cannon

Leaders: Admiral, General, General

Representative 1: Qui’rek (B)  +2. If targeted by Spy, Spy’s killed.

Representative 2: An’Grag (C)  +4. If killed, killer must place 1CC from supply into a system of your choice.

Representative 3: Redband R’t’an (S)  +0. Choose Representative and outcome. If not like you want, representative is killed after voting.

Racial Tech 1: Valkyrie Armor (3)  At the end of a round of Invasion Combat, roll one die for each casualty you take. For each 10 you roll, your opponent must immediately take one casualty.

Racial Tech 2: Exotrireme (4)  At the end of a round of Space Battle, you may destroy one of your Dreadnoughts present to destroy two present enemy ships of your choice.

Starting Units:

  • 5 GF
  • 1 Carrier
  • 1 Cruiser
  • 1 PDS

Trade Agreements:  2,1

Homesystem:  Tren’lak (1/0), Quinarra (3/1)

Flagship: C’morran Norr (10 / 5×3 / 1 / 2)  You receive +1 to your space combat rolls in this system.


The Sardakk N’orr are the fighters of the galaxy. Their racial ability is the most simple, most direct of all. It comes as a surprise to many that their focus in abilities on fighting space battles doesn’t need to dictate their strategy, that, in fact, the Sardakk N’orr are ill-suited to waging war against the players from day one.

To understand this, we have to look beyond the racial ability. It grants the N’orr a bonus of +1 on every single combat roll, not only in Space Battles, but also in Invasion Combat and for PDS fire. In combat, they’ll always have the edge since they hit up to 50% more often than the others (50% in case of Carriers). That is their only racial ability, however. It guarantees you being the number one target for all AC targeting one racial ability, since your image of a fearsome adversary relies on it.

When I said that the N’orr are ill-suited for attacking in the early games, it is easily explained by their lack of starting forces. One Cruiser is all they have to fight with; if an enemy really can attack you in round 1, you have a serious problem on your hands. Four resources on two planets isn’t exactly much to cope with early aggression, and your PDS still misses 40% of the time. So you have to overcome your starting weakness quickly.

Your starting techs provide you with the essentials for war-making: Hylar V Assault Laser and Deep Space Cannon are a good foundation for other combat techs. Also, other techs like XRD Transporters to bring in the GF and Enviro Compensator for more build limit are good, since you have to transform in a war machine quickly.

Forget your first racial tech, “Valkyrie Armor”, on your way to domination. It is not worth the cost in any way and too random to be a factor in your planning. Sardakk N’orr are great in reducing the random factor of battles since they hit more and can therefore determine the result of battles with greater precision. The resources for their tech are put to better use in ships, where they will result in much more sure hits. Your second racial tech, “Exotrireme”, is much better. Provided your Dreadnought lives into the second round of combat, which it should well be able to, it may DESTROY to enemy ships of your choice – two Warsuns, for example, or a flagship, or enemy Dreadnoughts. It seems like only enemy ships with Sustain Damage are really worth the effort, or you blow up Carriers with the enemy’s invasion force on them. Since your fleets shouldn’t contain too much Dreadnoughts but instead rely on Destroyers and Cruisers, this racial tech will be used mostly to make them worth the while.

Their home system is not crappy in any way, but it’s not a real good one either. It serves as a production center if you can’t get something better, provided you get some additional resources elsewhere. Two SD in your HS are mandatory if you don’t have a double or triple system with better build limit in range.

The biggest disadvantage of the N’orr (we were here already) is their starting forces. Just one Cruiser, one Carrier loaded with GF and no Fighter cover makes for no secure start. You’re awfully slow expanding until you get a second Carrier and are not able to protect them properly until round 2. As soon as you have a secure position, you need to build up a fleet and make ready to use it. This fleet should have a backbone consisting of Destroyers. A N’orr player should always have all of his eight Destroyers on the board. You ask why? They offer the best cost-to-effect ratio of all ships. From the start, Sardakk N’orr Destroyers hit on 7 or better, and against Fighters they can even pull two dice at the same hit number. Upgraded with Automated Defense Turrets, this effect is reinforced by adding a die and reducing the hit number to an incredible 5 against Fighters! And all of that with a cost of only one resource per Destroyer. Really, no reason to build a Cruiser while you can build Destroyers. You don’t need War Suns, you need a fleet of many cheap ships since their impact is so much higher than compared to the other races.

The Sardakk N’orr Flagship is a no-brainer should you ever mass up a substantial fleet. It doubles the only racial ability of the Sardakk N’orr, making hits by Warsuns a guarantee and ridiculously boosting the hit numbers of other ships. If the N’orr fleets ever were something to mess with, this nice ship pretty much ensures they aren’t anymore.

The Representatives of the N’orr are interesting. Your Bodyguard pretty much ensures that your Representatives are seldom targeted, which makes the use of the Councilor (which to kill also means a hefty disadvantage for the killer) and the Spy so much more easy to use. The spy is also very efficient in bullying people into the vote you like, so the N’orr come out at the nice end of the Representative selection.

It is imperative that you use your power offensively. This does not necessary mean you attack as fast as you can. An important factor of the Sardakk N’orr is the deterrence originating in their racial ability. No one is eager to put a fight to you, since you balance them out even with fewer ships. It can’t hurt to fight enemies, however. Alliances of two players against you could prove deadly, and your single 2TA isn’t really that strong an incentive to buy allies. You might consider not starting wars but taking advantage of them. Use the fighting of others to carve out chunks of the universe. You’re superior on the battlefield. Even out the enemy. Fight until you have what you need and then conclude a peace and watch the other guys tear each other apart, maybe even brokering for your assistance. You are the best warrior in the galaxy. Use this in every aspect and destroy potential rivals before they pull out their fancy techs.







4 thoughts on “Twilight Imperium: The Sardakk N’orr

  1. I won my last game as sardakk n’orr. My racial tech (berserker genome, i don’t have shards of the throne) really saved my insectoid butt several times. There was this battle where i lost 4 destroyers in the first round, and rolled 3 “10”s for the berserker tech, that was 6 hits! I was unnaturally luck, and no one wanted to attack me after that for fear of losing everything to exploding n’orr ships.

    So they can be good 🙂 . I think even without the berserker luck i would have fared well, since my cruisers had the same strength as my opponents dreadnoughts, and thats the only thing everyone was building so i had a huge number advantage.

  2. I think building large amounts of cruisers and destroyers was a good play for you – but it’s worth pointing out that you were using the racial tech incorrectly. You can only use it for INVASION combat – that’s ground forces only (maybe Mechs and Mercs if you’re using expansions). Additionally, it’s only ONE casualty per 10 rolled – I think you might have been conflating the effect with the N’orr’s other racial tech.

  3. He told you he doesn’t have shards of the throne expansion. N’orr originally had Berserker Genome race tech in Shatterred empire, the crappier Valkyrie Armor replaces it just like the revised and overnerfed Bioptic Recyclers replaces the original.

  4. I don’t have the Shards expansion either.

    I believe you are using berserker genome wrong. You don’t inflict 2 damage to the enemy with every roll of 10. If you only inflict 2 damage if any of your rolls are 10.

    So if you roll 3 10’s or only 1, you still only inflict 2 damage on the enemy.

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