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Concerns about card distribution in packs

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59 minutes ago, Iuchi Toshimo said:

IMO, compared to the CCG model, it feels like the meta shifts excruciatingly slowly in an LCG. But, when it shifts, it shifts very quickly, much like a CCG.

I've found it better to play multiple factions in an LCG. If your favorite faction is getting boring, then make a fun deck out of another faction. I'm not sure it needs to be said: This practice will expand your card knowledge and help you get into the decision making process of your opponents. It also keeps things fresh. Even if Pony is getting garbage in the next pack, maybe you'll be excited by that shiny new Crab.

The case of Night's Watch from AGoT2 chills me. They were pretty 'meh' in the core set and didn't get very much for the entire first cycle. The problem was that their loyal cards were/felt underpowered, so they were lacking as the primary house, but they made a decent splash into other decks.

If something similar happens in l5r, it will truly test clan loyalty.

The good news in regards to the Night's Watch being only good as a splash into other factions, in terms of this game, is that you can't splash dynasty cards. So, whereas the Wall and Aemon and Benjen were all non loyal, allowing you to export them to a more reliable faction, that basically won't be possible in this game. You can splash events and maybe a hand full of conflict characters. But the core theme of each clan doesn't seem to be transmutable, which I find will be a vast improvement over Game of Thrones. 

 

If the Wall were loyal, I feel like Night's Watch would have caught on faster and Banner of the Watch decks, quite frankly, wouldn't exist (maybe that's the logic behind not making it loyal). But, due to their unique win condition, they needed characters that simply weren't available to them at the time. Night's Watch, in my opinion, is a perfect example of how LCGs can grow a theme exponentially over time. You give a clan or faction something strong, but not the tools to support it or make it consistent. Then, slowly but surely, you give them those tools just by filling the card pool. They are now a legitimately strong faction that doesn't appear to be going away for the entire length of the game.

 

I agree with you and I hope they don't give any clan the Night's Watch treatment because living through that first cycle (as a Night's Watch loyalist) was very very difficult. But it worked out in the end and I'm now very happy about where they are as a faction. It did take patience and a few mediocre tournament showings though :P.

Edited by Joe From Cincinnati

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36 minutes ago, Tekwych said:

Somthing no one has pointed out yet is the new deluxe policy of letting them drop as soon as the product is ready and not waiting until the end of a cycle. We could see three deluxes of two clans each within 6 months of the core launch and stretching the first cycle to 9 months instead of 6 if FFG wants to push the meta that fast. In AGoT the first deluxe was at the end of cycle one bit the second dropped in the middle of cycle 2 and the third just 2 packs into Cycle 3.

Where did you get the info on 2 clans per box?

And the info on the new deluxe policy?

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1 hour ago, illenvillen said:

Where did you get the info on 2 clans per box?

And the info on the new deluxe policy?

New deluxe policy came out in October when they dropped Deluxe 2 between cycle 2.3 and 2.4 of AGoTv2. Ir was stated in one of the news articles that making people wait 4 years to flesh out a faction did not seam fair so deletes would no longer be in-between cycles but instead drop as the 'card sets' dictated. Deluxe 3 then dropped between 3.1 and 3.2 and we could get deluxe 4 before the end of cycle 3. Arkham Horror is a very different beast but we got both Curse of the Rougarou and Carnevale of Horrors  before the first cycle, The Dunwich Legacy, had finished.

As to 2 clans per deluxe that was peer of my speculation of FFG speeding things up (Could, if). Nothing from FFG to support that yet. Sorry if I was not clear.

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Thanks for clearing that up. I was a asking because I thought I heard about 2 clans per box somewhere, but couldn't find the source 

Edited by illenvillen
Thanks added

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And the forth deluxe for AGoTv2 just got announced the week after the third pack of the third cycle drops. If you consider that the first deluxe used to come after cycle 1 completes then we have twice the number that would have been available by the end of the year under the old system.  If they are designing in large blocks we could see as many as 4 deluxe boxes in the first 12 months. Thats one a quarter and should be a balance between cost and number of cards entering the play space.

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On 6/7/2017 at 11:11 AM, Sparks Duh said:

My hate is with the lcg model BECAUSE of their distribution process. ccgs don't have that distribution process, therefore, ccg is better... and cheaper, imo.

CCG are cheaper?  looooool u kidding me bro.  CCG are not cheaper, not unless you buy a starter deck and just play with that lol.

On 6/7/2017 at 0:09 PM, Iuchi Toshimo said:

IMO, compared to the CCG model, it feels like the meta shifts excruciatingly slowly in an LCG. But, when it shifts, it shifts very quickly, much like a CCG.

I've found it better to play multiple factions in an LCG. If your favorite faction is getting boring, then make a fun deck out of another faction. I'm not sure it needs to be said: This practice will expand your card knowledge and help you get into the decision making process of your opponents. It also keeps things fresh. Even if Pony is getting garbage in the next pack, maybe you'll be excited by that shiny new Crab.

One of the things about LCG is that you don't get the rarity / power distribution, so there aren't "weak but quirky cards."  Every card is either good, or a try-hard.  The meta is kinda stale because there is no "I didn't buy playset of all rares but still put together an effective deck," just "here is the net-deck for x clan, and I can build the whole thing b/c LCG."  I don't mind it because I don't have to buy boxes of boosters to flush out playsets of core cards, but it does mean the game is less flexible.  Each clan is going to have their one thing, and it will take a year or two before each clan can do a second thing.

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2 hours ago, shosuko said:

One of the things about LCG is that you don't get the rarity / power distribution, so there aren't "weak but quirky cards."  Every card is either good, or a try-hard.  The meta is kinda stale because there is no "I didn't buy playset of all rares but still put together an effective deck," just "here is the net-deck for x clan, and I can build the whole thing b/c LCG."  I don't mind it because I don't have to buy boxes of boosters to flush out playsets of core cards, but it does mean the game is less flexible.  Each clan is going to have their one thing, and it will take a year or two before each clan can do a second thing.

I think you underestimate the self-imposed limitations that L5R players have kept to in the past.  More than any other constructible game I know, people chose not to play the 'best' deck because it didn't match their 'ideals' for the clan.

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8 hours ago, shosuko said:

CCG are cheaper?  looooool u kidding me bro.  CCG are not cheaper, not unless you buy a starter deck and just play with that lol.

One of the things about LCG is that you don't get the rarity / power distribution, so there aren't "weak but quirky cards."  Every card is either good, or a try-hard.  The meta is kinda stale because there is no "I didn't buy playset of all rares but still put together an effective deck," just "here is the net-deck for x clan, and I can build the whole thing b/c LCG."  I don't mind it because I don't have to buy boxes of boosters to flush out playsets of core cards, but it does mean the game is less flexible.  Each clan is going to have their one thing, and it will take a year or two before each clan can do a second thing.

Between neutrals and splashable clan cards, I think we'll start seeing at least a little diversity in clan decks before the first year, and possibly before the first cycle, finishes.  Yeah, the card pool may not grow quite as fast the CCG did, but it's not completely stagnant, either.

Also, I hope that having cards release a bit slower means testing can be done more completely and we'll have fewer cards that are absolutely broken.

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8 hours ago, Tonbo Karasu said:

I think you underestimate the self-imposed limitations that L5R players have kept to in the past.  More than any other constructible game I know, people chose not to play the 'best' deck because it didn't match their 'ideals' for the clan.

We'll see - a common thing I hear from my friends who have played other LCG like AGoT2.0, Conquest, Netrunner ect is that loyalists are more rare as the card pool lets everyone build / play whatever deck they want, and the release cycle is slower so more people play around the factions more.  I'm sure that old5R players will start out more loyalist, but I wonder how much they'll stick to it as the game rolls out.  It will be interesting to see.  I know that with the CCG almost everyone I knew had 1-3 clans they would play, and they would simply vary the decks from the clans they liked.  We'll see how much of that was setting / culture and how much was derived from it being a ccg, as well as how much FFG can maintain that culture if they so wish...

I've heard tournaments are flooded with more "meta deck" players than loyalists.  People who net-deck the best decks period, not just the best decks of their clans.  idk, we'll see.

I wouldn't consider it a break from the "loyalist" culture if people played 2-3 clans and simply had an overall preference for 1.  I imagine I'll probably play around with Dragon and Crab, but idk if I'd ever touch Crane or Phoenix (I hate Crane so I doubt I'd ever play them, and Phoenix are awesome, but just not my style.  They were always the villains in my RPG I ran b/c they were cool, but I didn't see them as player character material)

Edited by shosuko

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When I played the CCG, everyone chose a clan because you had to for your wallet to survive. Expansion packs come and you trade your dragons for the other players lions and everyone was happy. But in Emperor that meant everyone needed to cover the 9 clans and stay loyal. The LCG let's me play different clans if one seems cool as I go. I played for 6 months and was frustrated with inflated costs of certain cards getting out of hand and don't miss that. Same reason I wouldn't play magic the gathering. I love building the deck and I don't see a huge Meta because I will probably play against one of my friends and maybe in the local scene. I don't mind the packs coming slower because it is nicer on my wallet (also I will be keeping up with 3 LCGs soon) and I don't have time to play as much as I would like. I think it is easy to forget about the casual gamer in all of this.

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12 hours ago, shosuko said:

CCG are cheaper?  looooool u kidding me bro.  CCG are not cheaper, not unless you buy a starter deck and just play with that lol.

Hey! CCG is waaay cheaper. It's such a bad distribution model they had to stop printing cards for 2 years, which saved everyone a ton of money! ?

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We'll have to see how the clan loyalty in LCG debate pans out. In my mind, certainly there will be some people happy to drop 120 on cores and 60 a month in packs to keep full playsets of all cards on hand. On the other hand, the group I'm building plan on buying one each and trading out for playsets, thus keeping the cost to one third of what it would be. I think, in this regard, the LCG model is a bit more flexible than some give it credit for, and that we will likely see a decent split between clan loyalty and hopping.

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4 minutes ago, Zetsubou said:

We'll have to see how the clan loyalty in LCG debate pans out. In my mind, certainly there will be some people happy to drop 120 on cores and 60 a month in packs to keep full playsets of all cards on hand. On the other hand, the group I'm building plan on buying one each and trading out for playsets, thus keeping the cost to one third of what it would be. I think, in this regard, the LCG model is a bit more flexible than some give it credit for, and that we will likely see a decent split between clan loyalty and hopping.

60 a month in packs???  As I understand it you only need to buy 1 of each expansion to have a full playset of all of the cards.

As to people buying together and splitting based on their preference - I have seen that done with other LCG before, and it would be a nice way for people who are loyalists or people who don't want to invest as heavily to still be fully represented by their clan while saving some cash ^_^

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1 minute ago, shosuko said:

60 a month in packs???  As I understand it you only need to buy 1 of each expansion to have a full playset of all of the cards.

As to people buying together and splitting based on their preference - I have seen that done with other LCG before, and it would be a nice way for people who are loyalists or people who don't want to invest as heavily to still be fully represented by their clan while saving some cash ^_^

Honestly can't cite where I got that number from, wasn't aware they intended the packs to have full playsets. At the very least, that would be new for the (admittedly few) LCGs I've played to date.

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8 minutes ago, Zetsubou said:

Honestly can't cite where I got that number from, wasn't aware they intended the packs to have full playsets. At the very least, that would be new for the (admittedly few) LCGs I've played to date.

What LCG do you play?  I'm fairly certain it will be about $15 price point, and contain playsets of all card in the expansion.  There won't be as many cards added, but you won't need to buy it in multiples.

Every LCG I've played follows this.  The LCG I've played are Conquest, LotR, and Arkham.  Maybe those were unique in their packing, but as I understand it that is the trend that will continue for L5R.  Buy 1 pack, get play sets of everything.  This makes it even easier if you're splitting the pack with 1-2 other people based on clan loyalties, as you may spend only 5 bucks a pack to get your cards ^_^ (you'd have to consider how to split neutral cards still)

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I think there are three simple changes that would make the LCG model more dynamic and lower the barrier of entry further down the line. 

1.) Rotate faster.  It doesn't have to be a dramatic change from the current policy.  Maybe on the fourth or fifth cycle throw the first out.  That is around when we started to get rumblings about rotation being too slow in Netrunner.

2.) Never stop releasing deluxe boxes.  Have a deluxe box between each pack cycle.  That big dump of cards is needed to awaken the fanbase.  The slow trickle of packs are fine to keep things moving, but you really need that surge of excitement.

3.) Allow deluxe boxes to rotate at the same rate as the pack cycles.  Collecting too many of these deluxes boxes and allowing them to remain "evergreen" bloat the card pool and increase the barrier of entry.

I would never go back to a CCG format game.  I've got no interest in Destiny for this reason.  I do think the LCG model can be improved though to alleviate burn out and encourage new player adoption rates.  I'll play L5R either way, but I do hope they've given some thought into learning from their past experiences in this regards. 

Add:  LOTR, Netrunner, Conquest, AGOT 2.0, AH TCG all have full play sets in their cycle packs and deluxe expansions.  Pretty much everything released in the last six years or so have followed that trend.  I know some of the older ones did not, but I doubt they'd entertain returning to that format.  It was pretty unpopular.

Edited by phillos
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39 minutes ago, Zetsubou said:

We'll have to see how the clan loyalty in LCG debate pans out. In my mind, certainly there will be some people happy to drop 120 on cores and 60 a month in packs to keep full playsets of all cards on hand. On the other hand, the group I'm building plan on buying one each and trading out for playsets, thus keeping the cost to one third of what it would be. I think, in this regard, the LCG model is a bit more flexible than some give it credit for, and that we will likely see a decent split between clan loyalty and hopping.

Your issue will come down to the neutrals.  There is bound to be some neutral that everyone wants 3 copies of in nearly every deck but only a single copy comes in your core.

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My concern from a story POV any named character in the core set will be permanently in the card set. What happens if they die and new Clan Champions are released for example? Also a character released in cycle 1.1 could easily be dead by 4.1 in the story. I am guessing this is why we are seeing so many generic names characters.

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2 minutes ago, Kakita Katai said:

My concern from a story POV any named character in the core set will be permanently in the card set. What happens if they die and new Clan Champions are released for example? Also a character released in cycle 1.1 could easily be dead by 4.1 in the story. I am guessing this is why we are seeing so many generic names characters.

There is a rotation system already in place to let old cards fade and new cards take their place.  You can read a bit about it here

https://www.fantasyflightgames.com/en/news/2014/11/5/a-new-stage-of-growth/

Character death may not mean a character's card would become illegal, but that would be interesting if they did that.  We'll have to wait and see how FFG handles the story, tournament / play based story, character death, ect...

That may be part of why both Arasou and Satsume were both killed in pre-game narration.  It staves off the issue of a card being printed for a named character (both of these characters would have merited cards) only to have them die afterwords.

Mechanically they could implement a system similar to the "soul of..." that ol5R did, where certain cards counted as each other deck building.  This way they could introduce a new clan champion, and each player could pick which to use but couldn't use both.

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I love the LCG model but if their was one thing I would change is the Chapter packs. I would prefer 2 packs of 60x3 cards instead of 6 packs of 20. With the 6 pack model it sometimes takes a while for certain themes to become viable.

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I guess, people prefering to buy bigger packs could simply wait 6 months for the full circle to release, then buy a complete cycle and start to play it. Meanwhile, the rest of us will have been buying, playing and, hopefully, enjoying the hell of out them as they are released.

Edited by Mon no Oni

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44 minutes ago, Kakita Katai said:

My concern from a story POV any named character in the core set will be permanently in the card set. What happens if they die and new Clan Champions are released for example? Also a character released in cycle 1.1 could easily be dead by 4.1 in the story. I am guessing this is why we are seeing so many generic names characters.

They mentioned this in the first facebook live video.  They won't make a card illegal because a character died.  The game is meant to be more of a sandbox experience.  I was wondering the same thing since usually in an LCG the core set cards never rotate.  So those original clan champions will always be tournament legal.  I think it's likely we can expect to see new clan champions and even different versions of already release character at different points in their life.  The question that hasn't been really answered is what does that mean for deck building in this game.  Is there going to be a restriction on only 3x of a unique character regardless of the version of that character you include?  That's how its handled in LOTR and AGOT.  You can have any combinations of Gandalf in your deck as long as the total number of cards named Gandalf are 3 or less.  I suspect that will be the same here.  I wonder if that will extend to titles like clan champion.

I wasn't a huge fan of that when I originally heard it but if you think of the game as more of an abstraction with respect to time it's okay I think thematically.  The conflict you are playing out may take years to resolve and character can change, characters can die, titles can change hands.  I think we still run the risk of encountering some wonky unthematic scenarios here, but I guess the possibility always exists for you to engage in a mirror match where Toturi faces off against Toturi for example so I guess there is no escaping this completely.

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If they made it where you can only have 3 copies of "Champion" in your deck that would suffice for me atleast. That would allow for the fall and rise of new Champions in the story and decks with the option to keep the old ones in.

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1 hour ago, Mon no Oni said:

I guess, people prefering to buy bigger packs could simply wait 6 months for the full circle to release, then buy a complete cycle and start to play it. Meanwhile, the rest of us will have been buying, playing and, hopefully, enjoying the hell of out them as they are released.

This is a dumb comment. Seriously...

So because I prefer to have expansions be bigger, I don't get all the cards to play in store championships and just wait 6 months for an entire cycle of cards? Really??? And even then, an entire cycle of cards don't have the same amount of cards as a single CCG expansion. And CCG expansions generally come out quarterly or every 4 months. Give me a fckn break, man.

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14 hours ago, phillos said:

Add:  LOTR, Netrunner, Conquest, AGOT 2.0, AH TCG all have full play sets in their cycle packs and deluxe expansions.  Pretty much everything released in the last six years or so have followed that trend.  I know some of the older ones did not, but I doubt they'd entertain returning to that format.  It was pretty unpopular.

Yeah, AGoT1 had packs with half 1x and half 3x (up to the 4th cycle). The first deluxe was 1x; the second was 2x. It was terrible. They republished all of those packs and deluxes as full 3x before the end. Since then, the only non-Core Set product I can think of that didn't contain a full playset was the first SW deluxe (which made 2 factions fully playable - the Core Set did not). So I'm confident every L5R pack and deluxe will contain full playsets.

FFG keeps its rulebook deckbuilding rules pretty straightforward. You get a minimum number of cards (sometimes an exact number) and a copy limit for each "deck" (dynasty/conflict/provinces/stronghold), and rules about including out-of-faction cards. The copy limit is by title (you can still mix and match for variety) and any weird permissions or restrictions appear on cards that are visible from the start (probably strongholds in L5R - it's agendas in AGoT, identities in ANR, warlords in Conquest) or specific cards.

@Sparks Duh LCGs also don't have nearly as much binder fodder as CCGs.

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