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TheHil

Old Star Wars Card Game

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 This may seem like a dumb question to some of you hardened vets out there, but I was wondering if anyone remembers an older Star Wars card game from the 90s? It was kind of like Magic: The Gathering and had actual photos of the original trilogy on the cards instead of artwork. Does anyone remember what it was called, and how does this FFG LCG stack up to it? Do people still play that old game? 

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TheHil said:

 

 This may seem like a dumb question to some of you hardened vets out there, but I was wondering if anyone remembers an older Star Wars card game from the 90s? It was kind of like Magic: The Gathering and had actual photos of the original trilogy on the cards instead of artwork. Does anyone remember what it was called, and how does this FFG LCG stack up to it? Do people still play that old game? 

 

 

This is just a personal opinion, but I would say this game trumps both of the previous ones, solely on the premise that it features original artwork, as opposed to film and promotional stills. What this does is it enables FFG to produce a lot of material from the EU without having it look silly next to "movie saga" cards. It was excellent planning on their part, and I predict that it will pay off in the long term.

As to the actual gameplay, it sounds pretty solid, although many are voicing dissent to the fact that SW:LCG is a cooperative, rather than a competitive, card game. I see ways in which it could be adapted to become competitive, in either a free-for-all or team-based format, but it would require FFG to adopt an entirely new approach to the Empire side, which is currently represented by a simulated AI opponent, with the Imperial cards thus formatted in a way that would be inappropriate for a player-controlled deck.

But if you aren't against the idea of playing alongside your friends rather than beating them to a bloody pulp, I would recommend watching this game when it comes out.

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It was called Star Wars: Customizable Card Game and it was released by Decipher. I still collect the cards from all the expansions through Death Star II (the ones after that before the game was discontinued were based on Episode I and completely ruined the gameplay and continuity). It is a great game and the best card game ever released in my opinion. You needed no counters or other things to play the game, just the cards themselves. The only problem I have is that I can never find anyone to play with now.

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spalanzani said:

Is the Decipher one the one where they engaged that model to pose as Mara Jade? I can never remember, and can't find any mention of it anywhere sad.gif

It's funny you should ask about her, since it gives me a chance to elaborate more on why I feel original artwork is such a sensible decision. Decipher's game established Shannon McRandle as the "official" Mara Jade, thus giving WOTC more of a headache than they bargained for when they later owned the license: To generate enthusiasm for their The Empire Strikes Back expansion, Wizards held a player poll to have fans "create a character." The first step was determining which character they wanted to see, with the overwhelming result being, of course, Mara Jade. Only problem was, McRandle was noticeably pregnant at the time. So they opted to shoot the close-up of her hooded face that you see often, which IMO actually turned out pretty good. But I'm also guessing this is why they went with a really shoddy-looking CG piece in the subsequent set where they wanted her to be holding a lightsaber. XP

So this is why I'm looking forward to this game using original artwork.

TL;DR: They both did (SWCCG and SWTCG).

 

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No kidding. I recently calculated the cost of getting all the cards I lack and found that everything through Jabba's Palace would cost me around $150. To get complete Endor would be around $75, and Death Star II would be $60 ($160 to get the Ultra Rare Luke and Emperor cards). I would love to complete Hoth, Dagobah, and Cloud City, which would be around $40. But, since that's how much FFG's version will be, I think I should just call it a day on collecting Decipher.

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And, as I mentioned, since I have no one to play with, it doesn't seem wise to put any more into it. I think it would be best to just create decks for each expansion that play well together and don't have a horrendous learning curve for newbies. That way, maybe I can get my wife to play on occasion. Wishful thinking maybe? :)

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MarthWMaster said:

spalanzani said:

 

Is the Decipher one the one where they engaged that model to pose as Mara Jade? I can never remember, and can't find any mention of it anywhere sad.gif

 

 

It's funny you should ask about her, since it gives me a chance to elaborate more on why I feel original artwork is such a sensible decision. Decipher's game established Shannon McRandle as the "official" Mara Jade, thus giving WOTC more of a headache than they bargained for when they later owned the license: To generate enthusiasm for their The Empire Strikes Back expansion, Wizards held a player poll to have fans "create a character." The first step was determining which character they wanted to see, with the overwhelming result being, of course, Mara Jade. Only problem was, McRandle was noticeably pregnant at the time. So they opted to shoot the close-up of her hooded face that you see often, which IMO actually turned out pretty good. But I'm also guessing this is why they went with a really shoddy-looking CG piece in the subsequent set where they wanted her to be holding a lightsaber. XP

So this is why I'm looking forward to this game using original artwork.

TL;DR: They both did (SWCCG and SWTCG).

Shannon McRandle! Of course! I've been fruitlessly trying to remember the name for a while now. The card of her in Jabba's Palace is awesome, I need to find a copy.

I never got involved with the Decipher game, though I am still collecting singles from the TCG from WotC just to have them as a collection. I have read lots of conflicting reviews of the later game, I think the general theme is that old Decipher players are bitter about the game ending. This I will say about WotC's game though - when they began incorporating EU characters (in, I think, Rogues & Scoundrels), the CG artwork was so hideous I can't begin to describe my horror.

So yes, I am truly thrilled about the original artwork. That I have seen some of said original artwork in the previews has just made me go into raptures of delight!

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i disagree, just cuz this uses original artwork doesnt make it better at all, it just opens more possibilities which we dont even know if they will use. The Stat Wars decipher ccg was one of the best games I ever have played and still is. They made great use of the screen caps photos, the gameplay was solid, complex, fun and challenging. There was so many different decks you could make and strategies you could use. The second star wars card game I personally didnt enjoy, the one from wizard, star wars tcg.

Not anyone has actually played the non demo version of this new star wars game yet so we dont know if its good let alone better then the previous star wars card games. We can hope but the whole basis of stating this game us better cuz it uses original art is totally wrong.

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again i sate this cuz we dont even know if FFG will use the EU at all. We can hope but right now we dont know, and from what they have release nothing indicates that they will use EU. But got i hope they do.

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yagyu said:

 

again i sate this cuz we dont even know if FFG will use the EU at all. We can hope but right now we dont know, and from what they have release nothing indicates that they will use EU. But got i hope they do.

 

 

A mission used in the Gen Con demo involved an attempt by the Rebellion to infiltrate their former base on Yavin 4 to retrieve sensitive data. While plausible as an event that might have occurred shortly after A New Hope, it didn't happen in the movies, and by definition, if it didn't happen in the movies, it's part of the EU, or it didn't happen period. Ergo, yes, the game will incorporate EU material.

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For my money Star Wars CCG by Decipher was far and away the best and most complex CCG ever made and I've played my fair share. However I think it would be comparing apples to oranges to compare the two. I checked out FFs LOTR:LCG upon hearing of this games development and I think the models are different enough that comparisons are useless. Just the fact that it uses co-op as opposed to head to head alone is enough to throw a proverbial monkey wrench in any attempt to match the two up. I think there are many advantages to the LCG model as opposes to CCGs and I just hope the game is fun in its own right. I however find the main thing going against the LCG model is I miss the head to head competion of CCGs however it sets up well since due to its very design with you getting every card every time and at least a month between sets that it sets up more as a social event game. I've already talked to a few friends about just setting a day of the month each month where we play out each new expansion set. Long story short you'll have to judge the LCG on its own merits, but I don;t think you can really compare the two.

@ Spalanzani: I'm sure I have an extra copy of Mara Jade lying about if you are interested.

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It was one of the most well thought out games ever made. It only died because Decipher was run poorly. 

Original art doesnt really make or break a game. Did they use film photography? Of course they did, but lets be realistic, that will get you threw a good 6-8yrs no problem without going any deeper. There is a ton of it to sample from. However that wasnt the biggest thing, it also was very nice because of the mechanics, and the fact that you could play really REALLY good decks without focusing on what made the movie great. You could do really nice rebel decks without having to use Luke, or Vader for the imperials. That is one of the huge attractions at least for me. 

I think this game will be great, and unbelievably fun, BUT idk if it will be better than Decipher unless they make a mechanic to make it Vs rather than just Co-Op. That kills it IMO, tho I will buy a ton of it because my kid and I will be able to play it together. 

 

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Reading all this Decipher talk has made me nostalgic, so I pulled out my old cards...and immediately got some deck ideas! I gotta send out a few emails to see if any of the old group of players still makes decks and wants to play.

On a side note, if anyone here has any of the tournament foils from the Decipher game available, please let me know since I never finished collecting them all.

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I still have a complete set of the Decipher game. Loved it! Best CCG ever. Wish I knew someone who would play it with me.

 

I hoped FFG would buy the game mechanics and re-release it. sigh...

 

I look forward to this game and I'm sure I'll enjoy it, but nothing will ever replace the love I had for the Star Wars CCG.

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HisstKa said:

 

I hoped FFG would buy the game mechanics and re-release it. sigh...

 

 

I would love to see a streamlined, updated version of the game under FFG. Decipher sort of did this with WARS TCG, in an attempt to satisfy fans of the game mechanics (and they would've gotten away with it too, if it weren't for that meddling Rick Eddleman* and his dog). But to take the original game whole-cloth would be a bad idea, as the rules had become insanely convoluted by the end of the game's printed run.

At the same time, I would assume Decipher still owns the rights to the so-called "WARS Engine" (the ruleset employed by both WARS and SWCCG) and would not even think about selling them, especially to a company that currently owns the rights to produce a Star Wars card game. It would be a poor business decision, plain and simple.

But boy would it be awesome.

*Note: Meddling rhymes with "Eddling," as in Rick Eddleman. I know there was an awesome pun that could have been made out of this, but I couldn't find it. It's up for grabs if anybody wants to take a shot at it.

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There was talk when WotC got the license for the card game from Decipher, that they had the option to license the game engine.

We all felt the game needed a revamp because of all the rules additions and were excited about the possibility of WotC running with that. They chose not to license the engine and did their own...sigh

 

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WOTC using their own engine doomed it from the start. The Decipher game players felt burnt and had no desire to go from a complex strategy game to an overglorified form of Yahzee and WOTC fans don't really support their games outside of Magic as well as you'd expect from that large of a fanbase. Thusly it died within about 2 years.

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Wampa Dan said:

 

WOTC using their own engine doomed it from the start. The Decipher game players felt burnt and had no desire to go from a complex strategy game to an overglorified form of Yahzee and WOTC fans don't really support their games outside of Magic as well as you'd expect from that large of a fanbase. Thusly it died within about 2 years.

 

 

Your math is a little off: the first set they printed was Attack of the Clones, and the last was Revenge of the Sith, with each coming out a few weeks prior to the release of their respective films, which establishes the game as having a roughly three-year lifespan, give or take with respect to fans expecting the unreleased Rise of the Empire expansion. I agree with your general points, but still felt I might as well clarify. 

Just to be clear, I am wholly in favor of the idea of FFG licensing the WARS engine, if it's something Decipher is willing to give them. And it's been said that there will be "other card games" printed while they own this property, so hopefully this is an option they will consider. I just wish there were an official channel in which fans could state their advance support of such a decision (I don't think they read these boards very much).

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Has anyone else ever stepped back and taken a look at just how immersed in the past Star Wars fans tend to be? Everything was always so much better way back when, and whatever is out now, or upcoming, is always never going to be as good as what was once, way back when. I suppose the ultimate expression of all this is how the Classic Trilogy is much, much better than the Prequel Trilogy, and as such the Prequels should all be burned in the fires of hell, or whatever it is... (I was almost going to say "Mustafar" then, but that would just be too ironic).

I myself never played the Decipher game, and I may have mentioned here somewhere that the TCG I only ever collected as a collectible item, each card kept in folders without the intention of playing. Similarly, the only RPG I've actually used is Saga Edition, with all the WEG books and d20/RCR versions of the WotC game merely kept in boxes elsewhere. So I can't really comment on them. But why don't we ever seem to want a new game? Why, when FFG announced they'd be producing minis/card games and RPGs did people almost immediately start clamouring for them to buy the rights to the d6 system for the RPG, without waiting to see what they would bring that could be new to the universe?

I myself am guilty of harking back to the good old days, vastly preferring the Bantam era to almost anything Del Rey have published (though it doesn't stop me from buying everything that Del Rey have ever published!) and treating anything since the KotOR and Legacy runs of Dark Horse Comics with something like disdain, instead favouring anything up to about the Republic series. And don't start me on Invasion...

FFG have produced some really good games that I've seen, so why can't we trust them to continue to do this with Star Wars? There seems to be a trend of pre-judging, almost, which is so much a pointless exercise. Looking at the current stable of LCGs, if the Star Wars game was anything like Lord of the Rings, I'd be at risk of having a heart attack in delight. If they produced a separate, stand-alone card game in the manner of the revised edition of Arcana for one of the other eras of Star Wars, I'd be rubbing my hands with glee. That the company has managed, in each of the LCGs I am invested in (LotR, Warhammer, and AGoT) to produce a game with the distinct feel of each "universe" the game inhabits gives me immense confidence that they are competent enough to do so for Star Wars, and not need to buy the rights to someone else's engine.

Why do we do it? Why do we resist change and innovation so?

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