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LemonyFresh42

Fewer Novellas, More Side Adventures!

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10 hours ago, General Zodd said:

Personally, I think Alt-Art cards, which is normally what you get at events, are just nice-to-have’s. The issue many people have with the books is that this is new game content.

This comes up a lot.  And while it may be true for a lot of people, the prices that alt arts normally go for - even for fairly easy to get ones - says that a lot of people value them just as much, if not more, than this limited new game content.  Destiny GQ spot gloss cards are regularly selling for $250.

Nobody cared about hard-to-get promos or options until it was promos that THEY wanted.  Which is fine, of course, on a personal level.  But it does make all the complaints about how this is such a violation of principle hard to accept.

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2 hours ago, Buhallin said:

Nobody cared about hard-to-get promos or options until it was promos that THEY wanted.  Which is fine, of course, on a personal level.  But it does make all the complaints about how this is such a violation of principle hard to accept.

FFG has been doing alt-arts for years. They were entirely predictable, and if they really bothered you as a business model, you didn't need to buy in in the first place. They also don't change the way the game plays.

Mechanically distinct promos are a new introduction, in contravention to both the explicit description of the LCG model on FFG's web page and FFG's LCG promo card practices for a decade. They also an impact on the way the game actually plays.

I'm sorry alt-arts are hard for you to get, but this is a false equivalence.

Edited by BD Flory

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2 hours ago, Turtlefan2082 said:

Part of this maddening, yet we'll balanced breakfast.

A surprise in every box!

Just don't bother digging for it. The surprise was released the moment you broke the tamper-proof seal. You'll only find the surprise after you've finished eating, when you happen to glance in the mirror.

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2 hours ago, BD Flory said:

FFG has been doing alt-arts for years. They were entirely predictable, and if they really bothered you as a business model, you didn't need to buy in in the first place. They also don't change the way the game plays.

Mechanically distinct promos are a new introduction, in contravention to both the explicit description of the LCG model on FFG's web page and FFG's LCG promo card practices for a decade. They also an impact on the way the game actually plays.

I'm sorry alt-arts are hard for you to get, but this is a false equivalence.

This pretty much proves my point exactly.

The only "principle" here is that they weren't doing it to anything you cared about.  Heck, your arguments for why it doesn't matter for alt arts are pretty much EXACTLY the same as the ones for people who manage to live with the novella marketing, that gets people like you so incensed in the first place.  "Just don't buy it!" :D

It's only a false equivalence because you're perfectly fine with FFG screwing (in your own view) people as long as they aren't you.

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8 hours ago, Buhallin said:

It's only a false equivalence because you're perfectly fine with FFG screwing (in your own view) people as long as they aren't you.

I'm not sure why you think, "FFG said they wouldn't do mechanically distinct promos for LCGs and did not, in fact, do mechanically distinct promos for almost a decade, until they started doing them in arkham, which came as a surprise to everyone who bought the game a year and half previous," is the same as, "FFG never said they wouldn't do alt-arts, and have, in fact, been doing them for as long as the LCG format has existed, and no one should be surprised they did them for Arkham too," is the same thing. They're not.

I also didn't say alt-arts didn't matter. I literally said I'm sorry that you have a hard time getting them right in the post. I said it wasn't the same thing, for the reasons listed above. They are not a surprise. FFG never said they wouldn't do them; they have been doing them for every LCG they make for a decade; and when you bought Arkham, a trivial amount of research would have told you that (if you didn't know already). There was every reason in the world to expect alt-arts. The difference is in what was reasonable to expect from the game line.

When it comes to our differing preference, I can literally say I began to support the LCG format over other card game formats because they weren't doing, and promised not to do, mechanically distinct promos. You can't say the same of alt-arts, because they have always been part of the format.

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1 hour ago, BD Flory said:

"FFG said they wouldn't do mechanically distinct promos for LCGs and did not, in fact, do mechanically distinct promos for almost a decade, until they started doing them in arkham, which came as a surprise to everyone who bought the game a year and half previous,"

A lot of people are saying this.  Is there a source for this?  Because this is what the original announcement said:

"LCGs have no rare chasing to worry about, insuring that games are determined by a player's deck building skills and play strategies, rather than by who spent the most money in pursuit of those hard to find ultra rare chase cards.  The fixed format insures that every player has equal access to any card he or she would need to build a deck."

Here's what the main LCG page currently says:

"...they do away with the deterrent of the blind-buy purchase model that has burned out so many players."

And a GTM interview which says pretty much the same thing.  Amusingly verbatim, in fact.

It's entirely possible there's some obscure interview where someone said this, or that they've done a great job of scrubbing the interwebs, but as near as I can find, that's what it says.

So, do the novella promos break any of that?

  • No rare chasing, no blind buys: Buy the book, know what you get.  No randomness or rarity here.
  • Who spent the most money?  Same price for everyone.  Sure it's probably more expensive than an average card, but who hasn't accepted this with the LCG format?  My play group ends up with 3 sets of useless encounter cards we don't want, and a player who only wants a few cards out of a pack pays the same as the book.
  • Ultra rare chase cards?  Again, no rarity, and not chase cards by any definition.
  • Players have equal access?  Book can be ordered by anyone.  Doesn't get much more equal than that.  I suppose you could complain about the print underruns, but come on, it's FFG - if that were a violation of the spirit of LCGs the mob would have hit long ago.

I can find nothing where FFG swears never to offer a mechanically distinct card as a promo, but it's certainly possible I've missed something.  It does make me wonder where this promise came from.  Personally, I was in LCGs from the very first AGOT release, and have purchased and played every single one of them to some extent or other.  What I remember is exactly what is said above - no random packs.  Nothing more.

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1 hour ago, Buhallin said:

Here's what the main LCG page currently says:

"...they do away with the deterrent of the blind-buy purchase model that has burned out so many players."

Under the "no rare chasing" bullet point of that page it says, "LCGs have no rare or promo cards that need to be chased."

I don't play other CCGs or LCGs, so I don't know what the exact definition of a "promo" card is, I assume it really means "limited edition". However, everyone here seems to refer to the cards that come with the books as "promo" cards, which may explain why some people feel this is going against the LCG model (even if technically it isn't - as you said everyone has equal access to the cards for the same price).

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Good point. They are not actually promo cards. Not only are the books(and cards) available they will continue to be available to the general public as they are already reprinting the first couple books. They are not limited release, either by number or time. You may be upset at having to pay a bit more for only a couple of new cards(assuming you're not interested in the books), but it doesn't violate the LCG format in letter or spirit.

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A promo card doesn't need to be limited edition, at least no more so than anything else that will one day go out of print. The defining point is that it's promotional, thus the name. It appears in a non-game item to promote the game (such as cards appearing in magazines, or at conventions, for example), or to promote the non-game item, such as books and other tie-ins.

Regardless, the precise definition is beside the point. It's not like there's an LCG/CCG authority who standardizes terms. Nonetheless, when FFG promised no rares, no promos, when they launched the LCG format,  they went on to produce no mechanically distinct promo or tie-in exclusives for LCG-originated game products for a decade. That in itself is indicator enough; what FFG meant by no promos was quite clear from their actions. Even had they made no promise whatsoever, following a model for 10 years creates entirely reasonable expectations -- particularly when it was a practice that cut very much against the type of product from which FFG was trying to distinguish itself, the CCG.

Has the model changed over that time? Sure. To date, it's always been for the better. They've pushed down the number of core boxes people need for a playset. They stopped producing monthly packs with 3x of 10 cards and 1x of 10 other cards. I applauded them when they did those things, and since they've gone to every expansion offering a playset of each card, I've played every LCG they've produced because I supported the model. I haven't stuck with all of them, because I like some more than others, but so it goes.

When the model goes the other way, I'm going to be no less vocal. I really don't care if people have a difference of opinion; everyone's entitled to their own preferences. If you love that they're doing novellas with exclusive cards, great! Knock yourself out, buy all 57 or whatever. If you want to complain about alt-art promos, that's fine, too. Go for it. But claiming that nothing has changed, or that it's the same as alt-arts, or that people who are expressing displeasure in a change in the model have no grounds to do so, is silly.

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One other point, this isn' pay to win.

None of the replacement cards are inherently more powerful than the normal versions. You don' suddenly win easy with them.

This also isn' competitive, So it is different than the competitie LCGs.

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3 hours ago, BD Flory said:

The defining point is that it's promotional, thus the name. It appears in a non-game item to promote the game (such as cards appearing in magazines, or at conventions, for example), or to promote the non-game item, such as books and other tie-ins.

This is only reading half the sentence.  It says "No rares or promos that need to be chased."

If you want to consider rarity, LCGs have had it since Day One, and still do.  Not every card is produced in exactly the same numbers.  Core sets often have fewer copies of specific cards.  Limited, sure, but still more.  Why doesn't that break that promise?  Because there's no chase involved.  Easy enough to order more copies.

Same goes for the novella cards.  Even if they're promos, they're not hard to get.

3 hours ago, BD Flory said:

But claiming that nothing has changed, or that it's the same as alt-arts, or that people who are expressing displeasure in a change in the model have no grounds to do so, is silly.

I'll freely grant that something has changed, but it has changed to be exactly the same as alt arts.  Your declared promise that they'd never make mechanically distinct promos doesn't exist.  You may have expected it since they hadn't done it before, but all they're doing with them now is exactly what they've been doing with alt arts all along.  Honestly, it's still not as bad as what they do with alt arts, and the prices for even just Store Championship cards shows that.

Which returns to my original point - what they're doing now is exactly what they've always done, they've just started doing it to cards you want, for whatever reason.  You are indeed entitled to dislike that personally, and even be vocal about it - it's tiring seeing it come up every time they announce a new book, but whatever.  My original point was that there is no higher moral principle here, FFG hasn't broken any pinkie-swear promises.  It's just a bunch of people upset that they can't get something they want as cheaply as they want it.

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31 minutes ago, Buhallin said:

This is only reading half the sentence.  It says "No rares or promos that need to be chased."

This is twisting the language into absurdity. No cards ever need to be chased, whether you emphasize the need or the chase. You could say exactly the same thing about hundreds of ccg promos, maybe thousands, from the 90s to now.  FFG could release an Arkham Nights only neutral promo was a 0 cast fast card that removed a doom from the agenda and drew a card. Ridiculously powerful in the context of the game, but no one "needs" to "chase" it, even if there are only 100 out there.  Just like no one ever needed to chase Black Lotuses or Moxes. The meaning is quite clear in the context of the ccg market to which the LCG market was a direct response, and FFG's business practices were firm supporting evidence for that interpretation.

36 minutes ago, Buhallin said:

If you want to consider rarity, LCGs have had it since Day One, and still do.  Not every card is produced in exactly the same numbers.  Core sets often have fewer copies of specific cards.  Limited, sure, but still more.  Why doesn't that break that promise?  Because there's no chase involved.  Easy enough to order more copies.

Again, anyone familiar with the C/LCG market knows what rarity means in the context of card games, and it isn't that there are fewer copies of one card than another in circulation.

39 minutes ago, Buhallin said:

I'll freely grant that something has changed, but it has changed to be exactly the same as alt arts. 

Yes, the change is exactly the point, and exactly why it is very different doing this with mechanically distinct cards versus doing it with alt-arts: It isn't a change for alt-arts. If you care about alt-arts, for whatever reason, they have always been chase items to varying degrees. There was never a time when this was not the case in LCGs. If that's a strike against the format for you, it obviously doesn't bother you that much, if you've played and purchased every single LCG to date as you claim.

42 minutes ago, Buhallin said:

My original point was that there is no higher moral principle here, FFG hasn't broken any pinkie-swear promises.

Don't be a child. Businesses, marketing and PR don't work on pinkie-swears. They work on creating and managing expectations, and fulfilling those expectations.

The expectation FFG created, regardless of whether through explicit marketing, through a consistent business model, or by any other means, was that mechanically distinct cards would be available in LCG game products, while promotions and tie-ins would alt-arts.

Whether or not you agree with that is, frankly, immaterial. If you're tired of seeing the complaints, don't read the threads, or put people on ignore.

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I also wonder why this comes up every time a new novel is announced.  No ones opinions have changed since last time and we all understand all sides of the discussion (why some people like them and others don't).

I mean no one hears me mentioning that I don't need a box to store one campaign in and I have to buy it (and dividers) if I want the cards that come with it.  To be clear, that's how I feel about the box but I have not raised it is an issue on the forum; I am going to just buy it and not mention I don't need it or like it every time a conversation around that campaign arises.  I don't see the box as a betrayal of LCG principles either.

I also recognize that others may love the box and that future expansions like this may also include a box.  I will probably buy them too.  Or maybe not.  I will see how it goes. 

 

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48 minutes ago, BD Flory said:

This is twisting the language into absurdity. No cards ever need to be chased, whether you emphasize the need or the chase. You could say exactly the same thing about hundreds of ccg promos, maybe thousands, from the 90s to now.  FFG could release an Arkham Nights only neutral promo was a 0 cast fast card that removed a doom from the agenda and drew a card. Ridiculously powerful in the context of the game, but no one "needs" to "chase" it, even if there are only 100 out there.  Just like no one ever needed to chase Black Lotuses or Moxes. The meaning is quite clear in the context of the ccg market to which the LCG market was a direct response, and FFG's business practices were firm supporting evidence for that interpretation.

I'm pretty sure what he meant by not "needing to be chased" is the long-term retail availability of these cards. 

In your Arkham Nights example or the countless magazine- and convention-promos of the CCGs of the 90s, the availability of the promos is finite (sometimes to the point of being extremely scarce), and therefore became "chase" cards that were difficult (or impossible) to track down.  Whereas with the Novellas, yes... obtaining the cards requires purchasing something outside of game expansions (and hence they are certainly "promos"), but it is safe to assume based on publication history of FFG's previous novels that the books will be printed and available almost indefinitely.  Sure, the books are a bit hard to come by now, but FFG's supply will eventually catch up with the demand, and you'll be able to find the books pretty easily... at which point, it will obviously still be your choice as a player as to whether you want to buy the books just for the cards, but it shouldn't require any kind of effort or "chase" to obtain them.

Edited by KBlumhardt

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1 hour ago, BD Flory said:

This is twisting the language into absurdity. No cards ever need to be chased, whether you emphasize the need or the chase. You could say exactly the same thing about hundreds of ccg promos, maybe thousands, from the 90s to now.  FFG could release an Arkham Nights only neutral promo was a 0 cast fast card that removed a doom from the agenda and drew a card. Ridiculously powerful in the context of the game, but no one "needs" to "chase" it, even if there are only 100 out there.  Just like no one ever needed to chase Black Lotuses or Moxes. The meaning is quite clear in the context of the ccg market to which the LCG market was a direct response, and FFG's business practices were firm supporting evidence for that interpretation.

I agree that the meaning is quite clear, but this is either completely ignorant of the CCG market or insanely disingenuous.  Many people did (and do) indeed feel pressured to chase these high-dollar cards.  If you don't feel the need to chase specific cards, CCGs are a trivially cheap game to play.  Amazon has a listing for 1,000 Magic commons for $14.  As you present it here, LCGs are a stupid investment compared to CCGs.

Using Destiny as an example (and if you want to bash FFG over abandoning the principles they built with LCGs, that's where you should be doing it) Legendary cards are included 1 every 6 packs, replacing the rares.  That means 6 per box of boosters, which is $108 at retail or $18 per card just at base value.  There are 17 per set, which means you spend $108 for about a 1 in 3 chance to get the one you're looking for.  And that's one of the two copies you probably want in order to play it.  This is why popular legendaries will often sell from $50-$70 each.  Many people DO feel the need to chase after these cards, which are hard to get through a combination of rarity, popularity, and high play power.

This is the situation which LCGs were promising to replace.  If you weren't aware of that or never dealt with it, and decided they meant something else, that's on you.  If you just decided that they couldn't mean that because nobody NEEDS any particular card, that's also on you.

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On 3/15/2018 at 11:03 AM, KrisWall said:

Realistically, you could probably get me to buy a ton of different things if they came with new content for this game.  FFG and Kellogg team up to produce a breakfast cereal called Cthul-O's?  I'd buy it and eat it if it came with new cards.  Cthul-O's...  now with more marshmallow tentacles!

Back when I was a young whippersnapper in Arkham, the cereal would eat YOU, ayuh. The kids these days don't appreciate what they got.

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I would also like hear more about the "MORE SIDE ADVENTURES" part of the original premise of this thread.

We always run our characters through CotR and CoH to get more XP/kick the tires before we've invested too much in a particular build. But I would happily take 2 more side adventures/mini-campaigns each year. They can dump one at GenCon and unveil the other at Arkham Nights, I don't care. I just want more content.

(I like the novellas, too, but I'm really just using them to visualize what I would like to see in a Netflix series based on AH...)

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On 3/16/2018 at 12:35 PM, Buhallin said:

I agree that the meaning is quite clear, but this is either completely ignorant of the CCG market or insanely disingenuous.  Many people did (and do) indeed feel pressured to chase these high-dollar cards.  If you don't feel the need to chase specific cards, CCGs are a trivially cheap game to play.  Amazon has a listing for 1,000 Magic commons for $14.  As you present it here, LCGs are a stupid investment compared to CCGs.

And there were also promos that people backed decks with. The problem with promos is that they aren't necessarily chase cards by design -- many companies tried to make powerful promos easy to get by keeping them in print for the life of the game or the expansion with which they were associated, and made promos with short runs exceedingly narrow use. Many companies tried to do the same thing with rares. I worked for one of them during the exact period we're discussing. But demand is unpredictable, and the play value of cards in relationship to other cards changes over the life of the game.

What you "needed to chase," as a player or collector, was unpredictable. This is like arguing that you don't want to buy bad fiction to get cards (if you're on the con side) or that it's buying good fiction with that comes with bonus cards (if you're pro). Whether the fiction is good or bad is immaterial. Just like whether the promos or rares are good or bad, vital or coasters, is likewise immaterial, in part because it's both unpredictable and subjective. Even with the best intentions, it's inevitable that a power card will slip through. The only thing we can say is true for all (primary market) purchasers is that they had to buy fiction that made up the bulk of the cost of production to get the cards.

Many companies *tried* to make promos and rares without making chase promos and rares. That wasn't a new thing, and wouldn't have been worthy of announcement. The whole point of the promise wasn't that LCGs were supposed to be a stupid investment. It's that they weren't supposed to be a financial investment at all. You buy a game at a reasonable price, for its value as a game, not an investment. So of course the promise makes LCGs sound like a stupid investment. They were supposed to be.

The far more important point, though, as I've said multiple times, is that FFG's business practice following the introduction of the format was 100% consistent with my interpretation. You know a tree by its fruit, and the fruit of this announcement was no mechanically distinct promos or rares, no matter how innocuous.

On 3/16/2018 at 12:35 PM, Buhallin said:

Using Destiny as an example (and if you want to bash FFG over abandoning the principles they built with LCGs, that's where you should be doing it) Legendary cards are included 1 every 6 packs, replacing the rares.  That means 6 per box of boosters, which is $108 at retail or $18 per card just at base value.  There are 17 per set, which means you spend $108 for about a 1 in 3 chance to get the one you're looking for.  And that's one of the two copies you probably want in order to play it.  This is why popular legendaries will often sell from $50-$70 each.  Many people DO feel the need to chase after these cards, which are hard to get through a combination of rarity, popularity, and high play power.

Yes. And it was known it would be a collectible game from the jump. What's your point? FFG never said they wouldn't do promos for any of their games, or that they would never do collectible games with rarity. Only that they wouldn't do either of those things in the LCG format. Destiny is as advertised, and everything you described is a predictable consequence of a successful collectible game. This is another false equivalence.

They also do exclusive promos cards for the other Arkham Files board games at Arkham Nights. I would be happier if they were widely available, of course, but FFG never promoted those games as a response to the proliferation of promotional items in the board game market.

On 3/16/2018 at 12:35 PM, Buhallin said:

This is the situation which LCGs were promising to replace.

Yes, and they did so not by presuming they could predict which promos or rares would be "chase" items, but by entirely foregoing promos and rares for gameplay, and marketing the format based in part on that decision.

Edited by BD Flory

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It really sounds like some people assign no value to the actual books and don't think a handful of cards are worth $15.  This feels like more of a value proposition conversation than a promo card conversation.  I think 99% of the complaints in this thread would cease immediately if the books/cards were selling for $5 instead of $15.

"I want the thing."  "So, go buy the thing."  "I want the thing, but I don't want to spend $15."  "Well, then..."

From the LCG/Promo side of things, I see no issue.  These book cards aren't limited release.  Barring the normal kind of stocking issues we see with FFG games (items being out of stock for months at a time while being reprinted), anyone can get one of these books/cards at any time.  They're not like CCG rare/chase cards where you could theoretically spend hundreds of dollars opening packs and not get the card you want.  I tend to think of them as regular stock Arkham Horror LCG "Character Packs" that run $15, come with alternate artwork character cards, new replacement good thing/bad thing cards and a nice book giving some insight into the character.  $15 feels like a fine price for what I'm getting. 

I do understand that some people would rather ditch the book and pay less.  Unfortunately, that's not being offered as an option.

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4 hours ago, cheapmate said:

You might have to wait a while longer for new novels to come out.

If these 5 were the only ones commisioned at he time, it could be a year or 2 before the next batch come out.

I'd be surprised if FFG doesn't commission more.  The fact that we're seeing second print runs so quickly tells me that these books sold well...  maybe better than expected.  I'd also be surprised if we have to wait a year or more for more books.  I think there are 50+ different Investigators in the Arkham Horror universe.  I'm expecting to have 50+ of these books sitting on a shelf at some point in the future.  FFG will keep putting out books and expansions for AH LCG so long as we keep buying them.

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42 minutes ago, KrisWall said:

I'd be surprised if FFG doesn't commission more.  The fact that we're seeing second print runs so quickly tells me that these books sold well...  maybe better than expected.  I'd also be surprised if we have to wait a year or more for more books.  I think there are 50+ different Investigators in the Arkham Horror universe.  I'm expecting to have 50+ of these books sitting on a shelf at some point in the future.  FFG will keep putting out books and expansions for AH LCG so long as we keep buying them.

I expect more as well, but if they will only start writing them now it might be a while before we see a new series.

Hour of the Huntress was already completed somewhere in 2016 (or maybe before even) and only published recently. 

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