It is no secret that anything Star Wars is sure to be a huge money maker. Star Wars: Destiny is a collectible card and dice game from Fantasy Flight. Awakenings is their first set and it must be selling like hotcakes because it is sold out everywhere. I have been curious about the game and I have been looking for it all over New York City. I couldn’t find a starter set but I did find 3 booster packs which is better than zero.
Each pack has 5 cards and 1 premium die. It seems like Boba Fett’s Jetpack is a good pull, worth about $15. I can’t say much about the game play until I get a couple of games in.
I wouldn’t pay the inflated prices you see at Amazon, eBay and the like right now. Fantasy Flight is sure to make another huge print run. I am waiting to pick up a Starter deck that I need to play then.
Unlike previous years, the 2016 AEG Black Box has only one game and it is marketed towards advanced gamers only. Interesting. Well I have my hands on the Black Box now and the game is Phase!
It includes 306 cards (6 reference cards, 6 preconstructed decks and loose cards to build and upgrade decks with), a bunch of tokens, 150 sleeves and a rule book.
Phase is a CCG/ TCG (maybe LCG?) years in the making. It was announced way back in 2010 and it wasn’t released until now. I haven’t played the game yet but it has an intriguing mechanic where each card is double sided, one good and one evil. A big emphasis on this game seems to be deck building and finding game breaking combos. For me, deck building is my favorite part of most card games (including Magic: The Gathering) and I also just happen to love finding wonky combos and intricate synergies. In fact, AEG has a prize for those who can find these game breaking combos in Phase. The art on the cards is outstanding and the cards are tarot card size which is unusual. Another interesting thing about this game is instead of buying packs like in a CCG/ TCG to get the cards you want, you can make your own combination of cards (the good side and the evil side) and print it with Drive Thru Cards.
The game is for 2-5 players. I skimmed through the rulebook and watch this youtube video so I think I get the game. With four different modes on each card, the game could be complicated to keep track of. But the game in a nutshell is just recruiting strong warriors and playing pump spells or removal spells in combat to win influence tokens/ victory points. Combat is like Magic. Warriors have an attack and defense value and they trade blows. One twist is that only good warriors can block evil warriors and vice versa. You pay for most cards by phasing aka flipping between the two sides of cards in your resource pool.
I haven’t been this excited about a board game or card game in a long time so I have high hopes for Phase. I just have to convince some of my MTG friends to try a new card game.
There was an explosion of collectible card games (CCGs) in the late 90’s and in the shuffle, a lot of great games got lost in time. If you can find them for cheap, they can actually be a lot of fun. I want to highlight some of these forgotten CCGs in my new blog segment simply called Lost CCGs!
I have to start with Comic Images’ WWE Raw Deal which is probably my favorite “lost” CCG. It was quite popular in its heyday but they couldn’t quite capitalize on the momentum. It is such a shame but not surprising. I found these Paul Heyman and Evolution decks for only $2 each. If my memory serves me right, these are two cornerstones for powerhouse decks.
I imagine professional wrestling to be incredibly difficult to convert as a card game. There are just so many elements to stimulated a match in a fun way but the mechanics of this game do reflect them flavorfully without being too complicated. Without going to much in detail, you have to build up fortitude to land bigger moves and you do that by successfully executing smaller moves. So to land say a shooting star press, you need to land a couple of punches and kicks first. When you take damage, you actually mill that many cards from the library aka the arsenal. Moves can be reversed if your opponent has a reversal in his or her hand or if it is among the cards milled. It is actually one of the few games I like that has the deck as your life mechanic. Also I love how you keep the moves you land in front of you so you can’t help but to use your imagination and just visualize the match from start to finish as you play the game.
So why did Raw Deal failed? I think the game got a bit complicated with the added rules each set brought. For example, I read the rule book a couple of times and I am still unsure about some of the prematch mechanics. Also cards can be a bit wordy and confusing itself. You have to read some superstar cards a number of times to get what is going on.
Anyways, living card games (LCGs) where there is no rarity or random booster packs are seeing more popularity lately and WWE Raw Deal would actually be perfect rebooted as a LCG. *Fingers crossed*
I recently came across this pack of Dragon Ball GT.
From what I can get from the packaging, it is a card game made by Tesla Distribuzione in 1998 and it is not in English. I am not 100% sure what language it is in (Italian?) but I can make out that you can pull 1 metal card or 2 rares. Interesting. The pack is something you don’t see every day so it really piqued my interests.
So I pulled a metal card and the cards in general are wicked cool. The game came out in the late 90’s which is basically when everyone was making CCGs aka TCGs and it really felt like a new one was coming out like every week. The CCGs business model was flaw though. In a nutshell, you really need a large passionate fanbase for the game to be fun (and profitable for the company) but CCGs can be a huge commitment, so many aren’t willing to make the commitment unless they are sure they can play with at least a core gaming group. Spending hundreds of dollars on a game that no one plays is no fun. So there is a bit of catch-22. I know companies tried everything back in the day like ambassador programs, tournaments etc but most are short lived. Everyone thought they can be the next Magic: The Gathering. This is unfortunate because there are lot of CCGs out there that are actually solid games but are largely forgotten nowadays.
Anyways, I was thinking it can be fun to try to find some of the more obscure CCGs and blog about it…
There are two things I can’t resist, a bargain and oddball cards. K- Mart was selling repacks with 35 random non- sport and trading card game (TCG) packs plus a promo card for only $5. That is less than $.15 a pack! I know most of packs would be of games no one plays any more (thus the cards should not be worth anything) but at the very least it would be interesting and something a bit different.
I am going to start with a TCG I actually played (a long, long time ago), the Harry Potter TCG and this is the promo card I pulled by the way.
So in four packs, I pulled a foil card! Maybe it is worth a quarter. I can’t say I remember too much about his game. I vaguely remember playing some sort of Hermione Granger deck and there were some owls in there some how. Wikied Harry Potter TCG and at one point it was the second best selling toy in the United States but of course now it is out of print. The fact is it is very difficult for any TCG to have any staying power. It seems that the only ones to beat this trend is Pokemon, Yu Gi Oh and of course Magic: The Gathering. Speaking of Magic, in the card store I play Friday Night Magic, The Stand in Gravesend, people are playing some serious tournament quality decks and I think it is time to pull out the big guns this week…
Battlecards is one of the Collectible Card Games (CCGs) lost in the sands of time. The name was kind of lame but the cards were interesting to say the least.
They came out in 1993 which is about when Dungeons and Dragons was popular (I think) and just as the Collectible Card Games (now known as Trading Card Games or TCG) boom was just developing. What is interesting about them is instead of dice like most fantasy games of the era, it used a Scratch and Slay mechanic where you scratch off a circle to determine the outcome (kind of like a scratch off lottery ticket). Here are the rules in the back of the packs and some of the cards I pulled.
Also another interesting mechanic in the game is the Trading Posts cards. You scratch off one of the circles to see what treasure you can buy (probably rare/ promos cards) and how many gold it would cost. You get gold by defeating your opponents’ characters and I guess sending them in. I think it is a very ingenious aspect to the game but I can see why it may not have taken off. No one wants to lose their cards, right?
As for the art, it is in the styling of Dungeons and Dragons books and Magic cards and I am a fan. I also think that the background and stories of the characters on each card is a nice touch.
All in all I think Battlecards was way before its time. I think it would have work better with some sort online element instead of the send cards in to get the treasure which would have been a hassle for both the players and the company. I guess this can be an example of being too innovative.
NFL Showdown was a Trading Card Game (also known as Collectible Card Game) from Wizard Coast to Coast and yea it was kind of a flop. I actually played the MLB equivalent but to be honest I got bored with it after the first couple of games. It also really doesn’t help that my little brother keeps winning…
Anyways I decided to pick up a bunch from a card machine as trade bait for football team collectors. I figure it is kind of oddball and I can’t imagine too many people buying them when they first came out.
They came in three packs/ lots and in the pack I thought would be a bunch of Jets, it was instead all of the same Curtis Martin card. So if there any Curtis Martin super collectors out there are 40+ Curtis Martin NFL Showdown cards that can be yours!!
Here are some of the other more interesting cards
Yep I pulled another but different Curtis Martin card.
As for the rules, you basically just roll a dice add to the stats and see what the outcome is. You can play cards to influence the die but yea it basically a game of chance. The football cards have bar codes on the side and I think this may be the game where you swipe it on a device and it does all the calculations for you. Again it sounds a lot more interesting than it really is.
So once again all the cards are for trade. They are kind of taking up space so if there are no interest in them (which wouldn’t be surprising) I may add them to a box of cards I am planning to donate.