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#1 MarthWMaster

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 03:00 PM

Though FFG has made the decision (smartly, in my view) to place Star Wars: The Card Game firmly in the Original Trilogy, because this is a Living Card Game, it's likely that the game's expansions and cycles could eventually spread into other eras of the Star Wars universe, and this topic deals specifically with that possibility. A related idea I had that has received some support was the discreet placement of an era symbol on each card, perhaps near the collector info. For those less versed in Expanded Universe lore, an era symbol is a marker found on most Star Wars novels and comics, which designates the material's location in the vast timeline of Star Wars continuity.

Anyway, as FFG lacks any form of unsolicited suggestion box, I wanted to open a new topic about this well enough in advance of the game's release that they might notice and, if it turns out to be a popular idea, could be included at the outset. All information posted on this forum becomes the property of FFG, and that includes this idea. I guess what I'd like to see here, then, is yay or nay responses to this idea. For those who want their Star Wars gaming experience to exist solely in the Classic Era and might be inclined to oppose this idea, consider: With the inclusion of an era symbol, it would be possible for there to be a "Classic" format that would only use said cards. That being the case, if the game ever does indeed encompass eras other than the Classic Era, you'd be better off if these symbols were present; and if it never does, it won't affect anything. For such players, I would also prefer that individual packs and sets stick exclusively to one era each, but that is a separate idea that I will leave the company's marketing planners to decide upon.

For reference, the publishing eras' chronological relationship to the Battle of Yavin (BBY/ABY), and descriptions of their symbols, are as follows:

Pre-Republic Era (36,000 BBY - 25,000 BBY): Symbol is the Republic emblem.
Old Republic Era (25,000 BBY - 1,000 BBY): Symbol is the Sith emblem.
Rise of the Empire Era (1,000 BBY - 0 BBY): Symbol is the Senate Seal.
Classic Era (0 BBY - 5 ABY): Symbol is the Imperial emblem.
New Republic Era (5 ABY - 25 ABY): Symbol is the New Republic emblem.
New Jedi Order Era (25 ABY - 40 ABY): Symbol is the New Jedi Order emblem.
Legacy Era (40 ABY - 138 ABY): Symbol is the Jedi Order (Old Republic) emblem.



#2 Budgernaut

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 01:15 AM

 I think my opinion has already been heard, but for the sake of an official forum dedicated to this topic, I am 100% in favor of era symbols. Whether those symbols are incorporated into official variants or not doesn't matter to me. They could be there simply as flavor to let people know when Kyle Katarn and Atton Rand lived. But at least by being there, it could allow for easy setup of era-restricted games and I'm highly in favor of that. Not that I can't fgure out what era everything belongs in anyway, but the era symbols would add an additional level of cohesion between this game and the rest of the Star Wars merchandise out there.


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#3 spalanzani

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 02:16 AM

 This is a good idea! I too hope the game may spread into other eras, and the era symbol would be the natural way to distinguish the cards. 

How would it work for more neutral things, like a generic blaster attachment, or a planet location card? (I'm assuming such things will be a feature of the game). Something like Tatooine as a location would be difficult to fit into a particular era, but something more like Naboo or Geonosis would be easily restrained to the Republic/Clone War era. Etc etc etc. Would there be a specific neutral symbol, or would such things just be left off such cards? 

For the moment, I'm still going to presume the game will be set solely in the Classic Trilogy era, but I am earnestly hoping it will swell to encompass the entirety of SW lore before too long :)


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#4 herozeromes

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 05:40 AM

I too, hope for this. Mostly because I would only want to get cards and expansions for the OT and OT era Expanded Universe. I just can't convince myself that the Prequels are in the same universe. Also, anachronisms really bother me sometimes, unless the universe includes some kind of time travel mechanic (if they made a Quantum Leap card game, for instance). Star Wars has no such precedent, unless you've convinced yourself that the Prequels are an alternate universe so that you can hold out hope for a rebooted prequel trilogy written by Lawrence Kasdan.



#5 MarthWMaster

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 09:43 AM

spalanzani said:

How would it work for more neutral things, like a generic blaster attachment, or a planet location card? (I'm assuming such things will be a feature of the game). Something like Tatooine as a location would be difficult to fit into a particular era, but something more like Naboo or Geonosis would be easily restrained to the Republic/Clone War era. Etc etc etc. Would there be a specific neutral symbol, or would such things just be left off such cards? 

I think that such cards would simply have no symbol. It would really depend on the card, as some cards would inevitably "exist" in multiple eras, but not all. A good example is the Emperor himself. As a character, he doesn't dramatically change much from the time he reveals himself to the Jedi to the climax of the Galactic Civil War.  I'm no graphic artist, but I think the card template could be designed to accommodate several symbols without taking up much space. I see this as being a long, narrow tab along the bottom border of the card's text box that would be generous enough to include at least four different symbols. Any more than that, and you have a card that is legitimate for basically any era, and thus would have no symbol.



#6 qwertyuiop

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 12:44 PM

Aren't symbols already included in LCGs to show the difference between sets?



#7 MarthWMaster

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 06:31 PM

Yes, absolutely. This would be a way for fans to sort out their cards in a different way; namely, by chronological location in the Star Wars mythos. Star Wars is kind of a unique franchise in that its material spans literally tens of thousands of years, and having some reference point for the continuity built into the cards themselves would be good for the game, so long as it didn't get in the way visually. Of course, if FFG has no intention of ever expanding into other eras this is a non-issue, but I find that unlikely, and would prefer preparing for the possibility either way. YMMV



#8 Budgernaut

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 12:05 AM

 Another option for neutral cards is to use the "S" and "W" from "Star Wars" in the characteristic font with the two letters run together. It says, "This is Star Wars" and positively identifies it as an era-neutral card. Though just leaving it blank works too.


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#9 spalanzani

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Posted 12 July 2012 - 09:04 AM

Budgernaut said:

 Another option for neutral cards is to use the "S" and "W" from "Star Wars" in the characteristic font with the two letters run together. It says, "This is Star Wars" and positively identifies it as an era-neutral card. Though just leaving it blank works too.

I like this much!!


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#10 Vase

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 06:19 PM

No offense, but I think era symbols would be superfluous.  

In LotR, a new core set was released for the scenarios based around the Mines of Moria theme, right?  Also, new game mechanics were introduced.  So, even though I haven't played that expansion, I'm guessing that many of the cards from the original core set become less relevant in the context of that expansion.  And I'm guessing that when they release the next core expansion, the Moria cards will be less relevant to that new set and the original cards will become less relevant still (to that new set).  So since cards are being designed to perform a specific function within a set of six scenarios, there shouldn't be a problem with trying to use them out of context in other sets.  (And if there is, they can always make a hard fast rule about preventing that sort of thing).

So by virtue of the concept of the Living Card Game, FFG can control which cards will be used when and where. 

This also means that for those of us with limited funds and a love for the original trilogy, and an indifference for everything else that came afterward, we don't have to buy those expanded universe sets and we can still play a rich intricate game full of variety.  For those of you with incredible amounts of cash to blow and a love of the expanded universe, you can get all the sets and play them all.  Everyone is happy so everyone wins. 

An era symbol might be a nice aesthetic touch but certainly not necessary for gameplay, deck creation, or even sorting and organizing cards.



#11 MarthWMaster

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 05:00 AM

Vase said:

 

No offense, but I think era symbols would be superfluous.  

In LotR, a new core set was released for the scenarios based around the Mines of Moria theme, right?  Also, new game mechanics were introduced.  So, even though I haven't played that expansion, I'm guessing that many of the cards from the original core set become less relevant in the context of that expansion.  And I'm guessing that when they release the next core expansion, the Moria cards will be less relevant to that new set and the original cards will become less relevant still (to that new set).  So since cards are being designed to perform a specific function within a set of six scenarios, there shouldn't be a problem with trying to use them out of context in other sets.  (And if there is, they can always make a hard fast rule about preventing that sort of thing).

So by virtue of the concept of the Living Card Game, FFG can control which cards will be used when and where. 

This also means that for those of us with limited funds and a love for the original trilogy, and an indifference for everything else that came afterward, we don't have to buy those expanded universe sets and we can still play a rich intricate game full of variety.  For those of you with incredible amounts of cash to blow and a love of the expanded universe, you can get all the sets and play them all.  Everyone is happy so everyone wins. 

An era symbol might be a nice aesthetic touch but certainly not necessary for gameplay, deck creation, or even sorting and organizing cards.

 



No offense taken! There are a couple points on which I disagree with you, however.

 

First, while many players are clamoring for a cooperative experience with Star Wars: The Card Game, the general consensus now is that FFG appears to have moved away from the design model used in Lord of the Rings, at least when it comes to the current Star Wars game. Each cycle's supply of cards will bring their own synergy with themselves to the table, yes, but certainly not in a way that limits players from mixing and matching cards from various cycles, as it tends to do in Lord of the Rings. If it did, it would defeat the purpose of it being an expanding game (I personally feel that this is the case with LotR, but that's a discussion for another day). Moreover, there simply should not be any such hard-and-fast rule restricting players from said mixing-and-matching, as it would stifle player creativity to a point that would pose a risk to the game's longevity. In a conflict between theme and gameplay, the latter should always win over.

Second, assuming that my above speculation is correct and that players will be in no way punished or outright barred from playing any card in any deck (albeit with an almost assured Light/Dark restriction in deckbuilding), there will arise strong cards and deck archetypes that are only accessible to players willing to play with Expanded Universe product. Such cards make a product enticing to the competitive player, and if FFG does bring Expanded Universe cards to the game, you can bet they will make them every bit as powerful as Classic Era cards. While this doesn't necessarily mean it will be impossible for the competitive player to restrict himself to Classic Era decks, it does guarantee that players not so restrained will be at an advantage in the deckbuilding arena, purely by virtue of having a larger card pool and greater diversity in terms of the strategies that can be employed.

Let's go back to the motivation for using era symbols in the first place. The goal here is for players to be able to play era-restricted decks against each other, be it in a casual environment, or in the event that the era rule is used in certain-though surely not all-sanctioned events (and I personally feel that it should be, otherwise it's purely a casual play marker, which does feel rather superfluous). While most players who care about such things will already know which cards are fair-game in their decks, and which are not, but there would be no feasible way to control this in a sanctioned environment without some kind of marker on the card itself. Expansion symbols are a possibility, but then you would still have the issue of "multi-era" cards such as a generic Lightsaber Throw, and of FFG being unable to ever print cycles or expansions themed around anything other than era, something that I personally think would be pretty neat, as someone who appreciates all of Star Wars continuity, for good or ill.



#12 Vase

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 04:50 PM

MarthWMaster said:

 Each cycle's supply of cards will bring their own synergy with themselves to the table, yes, but certainly not in a way that limits players from mixing and matching cards from various cycles, as it tends to do in Lord of the Rings. If it did, it would defeat the purpose of it being an expanding game…

How does limiting deck construction defeat the purpose of an expanding game?  It seems to me the purpose of the LCG is to encounter new scenarios and be given new ways to handle challenges so that gameplay never becomes redundant and stale like it does in most all games where options become exhausted.

I think that the addition of new cycles definitely puts limits on cards from old cycles.  When you play Decipher's SWCCG, how many cards do you use from the Premiere set?  Or from A New Hope?  When ANH was first released, cards like Death Star: Trench and Attack Run were EPIC!  Every game revolved around that.  But then once the next set came out, games never again used those cards because they were based around mechanics and scenarios that became totally irrelevant.  

In my opinion, this is exactly what FFG is trying to avoid with the LCG concept.  Certain cards will be relevant for certain pre-determined scenarios, rather than just a few cards being able to boss everything else and render thousands of cards totally useless.  You can play the latest scenarios with all the latest cards, but you can also go back and play the old stuff with the old cards.

I still hold to my opinion that the LCG concept will be more than sufficient to control deck construction in a way that keeps things balanced, fun, and thematic.  



#13 MarthWMaster

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 05:08 AM

It defeats the purpose of being an expanding game because an expanding game, by definition, is popular because of its increasing set of options and playstyles as the product develops over the course of expansions and cycles, which is exactly what you are describing in your post. A complete absence of restrictions in deck design would obviously allow for a greater number of deck types, but at the cost (which you don't seem to mind of course) of mixed-era decks being potentially popular and playable in all event formats. Whatever one might say about older cards remaining relevant, this would happen, simply because when greater options become available in a game such as this, players are actively seeking ways to explore them. That's a great thing for the game. As I believe I've mentioned above, I am completely in favor of decks that pull material from multiple eras simultaneously. I would argue, however, that for the miniscule amount of space necessary to include era symbols on the cards, they'd be worth including for those players who have already expressed an interest in them. And that's actually why I decided to post a new thread about them, because I didn't expect that anyone would have any particularly strong reservations against the inclusion of era symbols, an assumption which so far seems to have been correct.



#14 spalanzani

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 06:04 AM

Just to backtrack for a moment here, am I still correct in taking it that this game is still firmly set in the Classic Trilogy era alone, and so the entire nature of this discussion is hypothetical? Or have I missed something?!


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#15 herozeromes

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 08:00 AM

spalanzani said:

Just to backtrack for a moment here, am I still correct in taking it that this game is still firmly set in the Classic Trilogy era alone, and so the entire nature of this discussion is hypothetical? Or have I missed something?!

All the artwork that we've seen has indicated that at least the first set seemed to be set between ANH and ESB. However, the new direction the game is taking could be anything and we have nothing but speculation at this point.



#16 ChaosChild

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 09:42 AM

herozeromes said:

spalanzani said:

 

Just to backtrack for a moment here, am I still correct in taking it that this game is still firmly set in the Classic Trilogy era alone, and so the entire nature of this discussion is hypothetical? Or have I missed something?!

 

 

All the artwork that we've seen has indicated that at least the first set seemed to be set between ANH and ESB. However, the new direction the game is taking could be anything and we have nothing but speculation at this point.

Yeah, so far we haven't seen anything of the new game, there's no indication whether the revamped game will be all OT, a mixture or something else. We have exactly zero information to go on right now.

Hell, for all we know the new game could be pure Phantom Menace. 



#17 MarthWMaster

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 11:42 AM

I've felt from the beginning that FFG would and should keep the game firmly grounded in the Classic Era for quite some time, and until we know more about their new concept, I see no reason to modify that opinion. But while that does make this issue a hypothetical one, I find it reasonable enough to assume there will eventually be a demand for non-Classic material to put era symbols on the table for discussion. Keep in mind that this is a broader thing than just the Prequels and the EU material inspired by them. Star Wars lore set after Return of the Jedi falls under this umbrella as well.

As for the artwork in question, we have a bit. Assume that the artwork from the "I Have You Now" card sleeves was commissioned for the game, and you can bet that they will make use of that, and other pieces they ordered previously. There is also the image of Chewbacca throwing a Stormtrooper, found in the update article, which I see also as a metaphor for how they have "thrown out" their old idea for Star Wars: The Card Game.



#18 herozeromes

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 12:09 PM

ChaosChild said:

Hell, for all we know the new game could be pure Phantom Menace. 

NNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!



#19 Doc9

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 05:46 PM

Yes…this whole conversation is hypothetical and is also taking place in another thread on this same forum. Talk about superfluous.



#20 Budgernaut

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 01:07 AM

Doc9 said:

Yes…this whole conversation is hypothetical and is also taking place in another thread on this same forum. Talk about superfluous.

Well, this thread was supposed to be for registering support for the idea, and the conversation about the topic was supposed to continue in the other thread. At least, that was my understanding.


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