Journey Through the CCG Graveyard

Journey Through the CCG Graveyard #2

Welcome to the second installment of Journey Through the CCG Graveyard! Earlier this month I started out by recapping my CCG plays from September, and there will be a post much like that coming at the beginning of November. You’ll still get raw data at the end of this which will show you what I’ve played so far overall and can help you to see where things might be heading for the post and what I might talk about. But today is going to be more of a review for a single CCG. And to kick it all off, I’m going to talk about the Tomb Raider Collectable Card Game. And I am going to operate under the likely assumption that you know absolutely nothing about the game, so there are a few things I will be covering:

 

***Brief shoutout to the folks at Cardgamegeek.com for a great deal on the two starters and a small number of boosters. Check out the website for some CCG Collection tools (not for Tomb Raider yet, unfortunately) and check out his eBay store for a ton of product for sale.

The Goal of the Game

Regardless of the number of players involved, the objective for the Tomb Raider Collectable Card Game is to explore the location until you discover the Treasure Room, and then successfully find and obtain the treasure in that room. This makes thematic sense for anyone who has played any of the Tomb Raider games (regardless of era) or seen any of the Tomb Raider movies. In a solo game (which is what I have played), you are navigating through the chamber until you reach that room and discover the treasure. In a multiplayer game, you are trying to be the first player to accomplish the task.

Who you are

Each player will control an explorer character who has four printed stats: Fight, Move, Search, Think. With the base game, your stats begin as either a 2 or a 3 in each of those, and that value represents the number of 6-sided dice you roll when trying to pass a skill check involving those stats. The Move value is also the number of rooms you can move through during a turn (although hitting an encounter in a new room will end movement, which is usually what happens). The Think value is the number of cards you draw at the end of each turn, and also determines your starting hand size. All players can be the same person, i.e. just because Person A is Lara Croft doesn’t prevent Person B from also being a Lara Croft.

The Flow of the Game

Turns are relatively straight-forward. Most of what you will do is going to involve moving, revealing the new location, and facing obstacles or searching the location. So let’s talk briefly about each of those:

Movement – Imagine, if you will, a grid of cards 3 wide x 6 long. This is the basic idea in Tomb Raider for the layout of your location, and you begin with only an entrance in play at “Depth 1” and you know (roughly) the range of Depth where the Treasure can be found. There’s a nice little Depth measure that comes with the quest box, and the further you go the more dangerous it can be (more on that on Encounters) and it can go all the way up to a Depth of 12 for a longer and more dangerous expedition. Each card has yellow arrows pointing in the directions of travel that the player can go from that chamber, so for instance I might move onto a card that has an arrow at the top of the card and one on the left edge of the card. I move my figure onto that card, orienting it so the bottom edge faces back toward the card I moved from. That then informs me the directions I can move from this location, assuming it fits within the 3 x 6 grid of cards.

Obstacles – When a new location is flipped, your opponent(s) have the opportunity to play an Obstacle card – usually in the form of either Traps of Battles – onto the new location. The left side of the card has a Danger number, which is added to the Danger number printed on the current Depth, and this tells you the value of Obstacle card that can be played onto the location. Each Obstacle card has a numerical value in the corner, so as long as it is equal to or less than that number, you can play it on your opponent. In a solitaire game, you have a separate Obstacle deck that gets shuffled, and every time you move you discard cards until you find a playable card on the location – so you are running into more encounters in a solo game, but the tradeoff is your hand is all cards that can be used to your benefit rather than having some to slow the opponent. Many locations additionally have printed Obstacles on them. Most Obstacles will list two of your traits and a number after each, i.e. Move 9 or Think 11. You choose one to test, and roll dice based on your value. If the sum of the dice is equal to, or greater than, the number for the test you succeed and the Obstacle is discarded. They will have text on the card informing you of the effect should you fail, such as being Stuck for a turn. Enemies will require the Fight skill to be used, and success will deal them 1 hit from their life while failure means you take damage. Lose enough life, and it is Game Over…kinda…

Searching – Various item and equipment cards will be present in your deck as Discovery cards, providing potential benefits such as increasing skill values, adding dice to certain skill checks, increasing damage, drawing more cards, healing wounds, and more. Additionally there are things like secret passages which can add Arrow tokens onto a room, or even Save Points which can return you to life mid-dungeon and keep your saved inventory in tact. Drawing these cards does nothing on its own – to play them you have to successfully Search at a location. You cannot Search a room where you fought that turn, and once you’ve successfully found something at a location you mark it with an X token to indicate it has been Searched already and no future Search actions can be taken there. Like the Encounter cards, these item/equipment cards have a numerical value that you need to meet, or exceed, when rolling on a Search test and you don’t need to announce beforehand what you are searching for, so if you have Magnum Pistols needing a 15 and a Small Med Kit needing a 10, once you see what you roll high enough for you can choose which one thing to bring into play for future use. Many locations also add, or subtract, the number of dice rolled for the Search test so Searching in the right location can make it easier to get a stronger card into play.

On Death and Save Points

The game is very much like a video game. You essentially have infinite lives, and dying simply has you respawn either at the entrance (if you have encountered no Save Points) or at the last Save Point. Any items/equipment in play are discarded when you die EXCEPT any you had out when you used the Save Point, so there is a pretty strong incentive to find and use one. You also lose your entire hand but, thankfully, the cards in your discard pile just shuffle if you ever run out of cards to draw (which can and probably will happen). In a multiplayer game, dying also theoretically will put you behind your opponent in terms of progress, but you are never eliminated. And any advancement they make into new rooms conveniently also opens them up for you to move through encounter-free later.

The Card “Art”

Do you remember games on the Playstation 1 like Final Fantasy VII and Tomb Raider? Those “3d” models of characters and backgrounds that, at the time, was heralded as revolutionary for what was being done in video games? Well, that hasn’t aged well at all aesthetically and, unfortunately, almost everything you will see in the game comes from the PS1 visuals. It isn’t going to win any artwork awards, but if you don’t mind the graphics of the stills, it doesn’t really impact the gameplay. But still, this isn’t a game you’ll be showing off for how great it looks. A modern reprinting, if one happened, would do well to ditch what is one of the worst aspects of the game.

Starting Experience

The entry point is extremely fixed here for Tomb Raider, because you pretty much will need to pick up at least one of the Quest Decks. For the base set, there are two of them: Into the Caves, and Trapped in the Tombs. Both are very different and each offers a fixed set of cards, a Lara figurine, a pair of dice, a Depth tracker, a sheet of tokens, and a sealed Booster Pack. They are excellent in value, being relatively cheap to pick up both on eBay or other sites. It has your first game be relatively small, and has a great guide to start things out as a 1-player introduction. You even know where the Treasure Room is located, being a face-down card in the center of Depth 4. It allows you to search the same turn as you fight, and has you skip putting an encounter on the Treasure Room card, as you’re likely not overpowered yet in such a small footprint. Having played through them both, there is a little variety between the two sets but most of the reason to get both is having two full sets of room cards to explore which, as you will see, is a really nice thing. It will also increase your collection of some of the key cards that you’ll probably be using early on in your deckbuilding ventures. All in all, these are both EXCELLENT starting points for Tomb Raider, both for a player and for a collector. And if you have them both, you also easily have enough to play this with a second player going forward, although your decks will be a little more restricted trying to make 2 from that pool.

The Rulebook

The rules seemed like a daunting task but I quickly discovered that about half of the book was spent giving various scenarios and providing a card list for the Base Set (always helpful!). What I genuinely appreciated, although it stopped my plan of “I’ll read/learn this during ____”, was that it jumped quickly into telling you to set up for a short demo solitaire game and gave you just enough to go off to learn the basic mechanics. After that it has a handful of pages expanding on some of those concepts, introducing a few new things, and breaking down the entire flow of a turn. The back of the book also has a handy turn structure reference, which is a wonderful thing to have handy. All in all, this game has a very easy barrier to entry in terms of learning how to play and going from new player to being able to at least understand the basics. If you prefer to learn by doing, this game does it right.

Expanding beyond the Starters

There are three different sets that were released for the game: Base Set, Slippery When Wet, and Big Guns. Of the three, the Big Guns set is really rare and difficult/expensive to find. If you are looking at this game as a collector, that is probably where you’ll get the best ROI on the cards because I would imagine those are the expensive Rare/Super Rare cards. There is another Quest deck in the Slippery When Wet set, which is a set that introduced some underwater mechanics that changed the amount of preparation you might need to do before moving too far. The base set has 209 cards, Slippery When Wet has 209 cards, and Big Guns has 159 cards. There are also a handful of promo cards. Overall, the Base Set appears to be very reasonably priced, making it an easy entry point for picking up enough cards to add deck variety. Slippery When Wet also appears to be fine in its pricing, although a little more expensive, but should be easily accessible for anyone wanting to play. If you’re okay with “missing out”, I imagine you could play the game for a long time without needing anything from the pricey Big Guns set.

Deck Construction

There is a very liberal amount of flexibility offered in deck construction, allowing you to make a deck between 30-60 cards. The fewer cards used, the fewer copies of individual cards are allowed in the deck. So essentially at 30 cards you can have at most 2 copies, whereas at 60 you can add a 3rd copy of cards. The Locations themselves are separate from you deck, so what you are building will be a combination of one-time event cards, items/equipment to find via Searching, Obstacles to play on your opponent (or to have played on you in a solo game), and Level Up cards to boost your base stats at a Save Point. Striking a balance between those would be a key to success. Personally, I went with 20 Encounters and 40 split between the rest. See the end for my complete Deck List that I built.

A Variety of Modes

One of the coolest things about the game is that it offers a variety of scenarios to play, most of which being designed for 2+ players. However, it also welcomes players to come up with their own scenarios. There is also a Freestyle Mode, which is the easiest to run with and supports any number of players. Essentially, instead of a specific setting you take all of your locations and shuffle them up. You choose either Power 2 (goes to Depth 6) or Power 3 (goes to Depth 12) to determine the size, as well as the minimum depth where you can see the Treasure room. And then you just go for it, trying to either discover the treasure or be the first to obtain it. If you ever are in a situation where there is only one space left unexplored, it is guaranteed to be a Treasure Room and you would draw cards until you reach your first Treasure Room.

Losing the Game

Honestly, this appears to be a difficult game to lose. From what I can tell, the only way it is possible to lose would be to have no more possible moves to explore further. But with a myriad of cards that can add exits and/or manipulate card orientation there are plenty of ways you can press onward even if it seems like you are running out of options.

My Thoughts

Okay, enough preamble here. Let’s talk about the Tomb Raider CCG. I genuinely enjoy the thematic feel it provides of moving around a “map” and exploring to try and discover treasure. It makes this card game feel closer akin to a board game because of the spatial aspect, and I like the little figurines that come in with the Quest Decks. This part is easily one of the strongest aspects of the game, and it comes through exceptionally well in those Quest Decks which have a fixed set of locations that all make sense together. And even when you mix it all into one massive location deck, it doesn’t bother me to go from a cave location to a temple location to an Atlantean location in the same adventure, and you could easily tailor the deck to include only specific thematic locations if you wanted. I also like how the threats can potentially get bigger as you go deeper, but no matter how far in you go there is still a chance of running into lowly bats, or a pack of wolves, or just a pit of spikes.

The deck construction was a fun aspect, although as a solo play it made a small number of the cards I own unplayable because they interact based on other Tomb Raiders – something that would be really useful and fun to include in a multiplayer game but a dead card if running a solo adventure. But you could easily just have it be discard fodder, as you cycle the deck quickly enough, or you could have a deck for solo and a different one for multiplayer games. The cards themselves are all relatively straightforward to understand, and there are not many keywords to have to remember. It is a quick and easy game to learn with enough interactions and nuances in there to encourage repeated plays for mastery.

A lack of player elimination is something that seems unusual for a CCG like this, and provides what I imagine to be an exciting multiplayer experience as each of you races toward being the one to discover the treasure, playing cards to hinder your opponent while also boosting yourself to make it easier to overcome anything they can throw at you. Trying to decide whether to hold onto a card for later or to discard it now can be a really tricky decision, because you want to strike a balance between those two things but if you can’t help yourself enough, it’ll be Game Over and you’ll have to respawn with a fresh start.

However, in the solitaire game this is also its biggest weakness, because it feels almost impossible to lose the game. Especially once you get a Level Up on your character and a weapon into play, things go down relatively easily and it becomes simpler to discover new items. And I imagine that as you go deeper, the risk of getting overwhelmed only increases. I do plan to go to a full 12 Depth run soon, and that might show a huge difficulty spike, but at 6 Depth it definitely feels like there is a point where you just can’t be stopped and rolling the dice becomes a sense of “going through the motions” in the game.

And there is a lot of dice rolling that will happen in the game. Every turn you’re likely to roll dice, whether to overcome an obstacle or to search for things in the room. Early on it introduces a level of uncertainty that provides a nice tension but, unfortunately, that tension does decrease if you can get some key cards into play early on. Being able to hand-pick your opening hand can easily set you on the path to success if you get a really good search or two at the start.

The game is also exceptionally fiddly with the thin, small tokens that you’re using to track damage, when rooms have been searched, adding new exits, adding Save Points to the map, and more. If I can find a good system for storing them in an organized manner that also is convenient for playing the game, I’ll be very happy about that. Because right now, that is one of my least favorite parts of the game because I’m trying to find the right token to put on the card, and later when picking up they are a bit of a pain to grab because of their size and lack of thickness.

However, this game provides a strong sense of excitement, adventure, and accomplishment as you go through and explore, gain power ups, and discover new secrets. It is a really fun and successful experience that I found myself eager to explore time and again after that first play, and even though I’ve moved on to try other things I am still looking forward to the next play. Even if only as a solitaire experience, this is one I’m happy to not only keep playing, but that I’m willing to expand my collection at least a little – gradually – into the future. This game is so very solidly in the “keep” side of things that I’m genuinely excited to continue exploring more dead CCGs based on the strong success of my first few games that I’ve dabbled into. Is it a perfect game? Show me a game that is. That’s an impossible task, my friend. But this is genuinely a solid game experience that I’ve enjoyed and that is all you can ask from any game out there. I truly do wish there was a stronger threat of failure in the game, but the dungeon crawl exploration nature of the game helps make up for it because things usually remain interesting – as long as you don’t have to explore every single location in the grid.

So far I’ve found Facebook groups specific to a few of the old CCGs I’m enjoying, but I can’t seem to locate one for the Tomb Raider CCG. If you know of one, let me know. But my guess is that I need to play it from my hand and create that group, because this is a game more people can and should get to enjoy.

Notes on the Journey
Total plays (plays since last report).

Tomb Raider = 4 (+4)
MegaMan NT Warrior = 4 (+4)
Harry Potter = 4 (+2)
Final Fantasy = 2
Spellfire = 2

Decklist

Lara Croft, Treasure Hunter
All or Nothing x 2
Atlantean Big Boss x 1
Atlantean Life Amulet x 2
Attack from Behind x 2
Backpack x 1
Bats x 2
Bear x 1
Blinding Flash Trap x 1
Bounty x 1
Compass x 1
Cool Shades x 1
Dark x 2
Dart Trap x 1
Detailed Search x 2
Flare x 1
Flying Atlantean x 1
Gap x 1
Good Shot x 1
Guarded Attack x 2
Hidden Exit x 2
Idol of Life x 1
Improvise x 2
Just Made It x 2
Lara Croft, Adventurer x 2
Leather Jacket x 1
Look Again x 1
Magnum Pistols x 2
Natla x 1
Natla’s Thug x 1
Pit Trap x 3
Pumas x 1
Rough Ground x 1
Rope x 1
Run x 1
Save Point x 2
Small Medi Pack x 2
Snoop Ahead x 1
Spiked Slope x 1
Superior Tactics x 1
Take Aim x 1
The Way Through x 1
Triggered Door x 1
Wolf Pack x 1
Wolves x 1

Journey Through the CCG Graveyard

Journey Through the CCG Graveyard #1

Welcome to the first of what promises to be a decently-lengthy series where I’ll be chronicling my ventures into various defunct Collectible Card Games (also interchangable with Trading Card Games). And there are a LOT of them out there, let me tell you. My CCG days began as a child when my parents, because I was really big into Star Wars and used to love collecting and sorting sports cards, got me the 2-player introductory set for the Star Wars CCG. At the time I knew nothing about expanding the game, much less being very good at learning or teaching the rules, but I have extremely fond memories of organizing the cards and attempting to play rounds of the game – and maybe one day I’ll find out my version of playing it wasn’t too far from how the rules are printed. Yes, it will eventually appear in here because that is one of the games I 100% for sure want to explore.

Fast forward to the second half of high school, where I had a group of friends and we’d get together pretty much every weekend to play D&D 2nd Edition, PS2 games, and Magic: The Gathering. I had a blast with the game, and loved constructing new decks to test almost as much as I enjoyed playing the game (something I still enjoy way more than the average player). I was extremely limited in my card pool, and was frequently the player with the weakest overall set of cards to use, and so I had to come up with clever ways of finding combinations to counter what they could build, which is something that also has followed me: I am not big on chasing the expensive, powerful cards nor in “net decking” where I take someone else’s powerful deck and recreate it for my own play. I’m 100% a deckbuilder based on my own instincts based on my own pool of cards and so, as I explore some of these further, you’ll find some interesting decklists might arise (which I will definitely share as I construct decks, when able).

After high school, though, we all went our own ways and the band never got back together and, thus, my Magic cards eventually left my possession. It would be many, many years before I would try another CCG (Star Wars: Destiny), and then another TCG (Final Fantasy) and quit them both for essentially the same reason: an aggressive release module just doesn’t jive with me. I don’t want to chase cards, and I don’t want the game landscape to dramatically change every 2-4 months and require me to invest in a new set in order to remain competitive with other players. Spoiler: I’ve recently picked up some cards again for the Final Fantasy TCG as it is still a smooth, fun game with characters I love from having played most of those video games – but I am restricting myself to getting it more as a way to play with a pair of close friends who also have some cards in the same boat as me rather than try to entrench myself in a competitive meta for the game. And while I know it isn’t a dead game by any means (with the 10th set just about to release and an 11th already announced), it will still get some mention and coverage here in the CCG Graveyard adventure.

About two years ago I discovered a long-dead CCG called Middle-Earth. As a huge fan of Tolkien and a person whose top two board games are War of the Ring and the Lord of the Rings LCG, I needed to try it because I kept hearing it was one of the absolute best Tolkien-inspired games ever made. So I picked up some cards for cheap from a person and made some decks and forced a friend to try the game. Short story long, we both really enjoyed the game and we both have a small but respectable collection in the game, but it is one that simply hasn’t hit my table often enough (and this WILL be motivation to get it out more often, even if only for solitaire play). In the process I learned of a few other CCGs out there, but mostly dismissed them as something I didn’t really want to explore.

So what ultimately led me to the CCG Graveyard as a playground to explore these older games? First, I stumbled across a lot of them this year as I was researching into 2-player only titles. It quickly became a “well, duh” moment of realization that some of these might offer some of the best head-to-head gameplay that can be found. Second, was taking a few of those a step further and seeing what market price was for starter sets and some loose cards or a few random booster packs. Again, I’m not the type of player to chase the expensive and hard-to-find cards. Most of these, I’m not even looking to begin a collection of the game, but rather to explore the game, create some content to benefit the community that either a) already enjoy some of these older games or b) might be considering one of the games but can’t find anything current about how it plays, etc. And that is, primarily, where I want to step in here.

So as a brief summary, before this past month the CCGs I have played are:

Star Wars CCG (as a younger person, and I may not have even learned it or played it properly)
Magic: The Gathering (back around 2000-2002)
Star Wars: Destiny (for the first two sets, really)
Final Fantasy TCG
Middle-Earth

And of those, I have to toss out Star Wars since I’m not convinced I knew it or could recall it well enough to rank it. Anyway, enough preamble, onto the real content here:

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In the past month I played three different CCGs, two of which were new dead CCGs: Final Fantasy TCG, Spellfire: Master the Magic, and Harry Potter TCG (the latter of which was played just last night!). Because of the lengthy introduction, most of this discussion will be brief compared to future posts in this series – especially as I get into construction of decks and such. I will opt to take the approach of discussing them in alphabetical order:

Final Fantasy TCG

I played two games of this at my local game store back on 9/12, and had gone that Thursday night strictly with the intention of playing this with the group of local players. Sadly, only one other person came that evening (I think partially due to a shift by the group to trying out tournaments on Tuesday nights as well, which I would assume means most are doing one or the other) but I did get two games in against him with my trusty first deck, which is an Ice/Water summon-based deck. He brought a Final Fantasy Tactics-based deck. Both plays went relatively similar, as neither of us was running a fast deck. In fact, it was a bit of a slog as the first game I kept drawing Backups, and in the second I didn’t get a second Backup in my hand until near the end. So in the first game I lost eventually because I couldn’t maintain any strong board advantage, in spite of getting several early damage on him. Once his engine got started, we stalled and eventually traded damage until he was able to pin me down for a very, very narrow win. In the second game I had great cards, but they were really costly without any backups in play which meant I was typically bringing out only one new card or casting one Summon per turn. Still, I had a chance to win this one with an opportune attack that ended up being cut short by a fortuitous EX Burst in his deck popping to prevent my final damage from being able to drop on him. And that was enough, as I couldn’t get 2 more damage on him before he finished me off in a game that I decidedly should have won if any other card had flipped for his damage that round.

Overall I still enjoyed my plays of the game against him, but it confirmed that my deck, which i built when I had my first handful of cards, is still not very good and should probably be scrapped for now rather than trying to throw duct tape onto it. That deck remains winless, although it has been on the cusp of victory in every game it played – but all of them have been relatively slow which has allowed us both to get set up properly and, at that point, the deck just doesn’t have enough of an aggressive push even if it has tools to answer most situations. Better summons and more summon-focused units will help, and it may be a deck I try to build again later on. A final decklist will be edited in here soon

Harry Potter TCG

This was my most recent game and is, of course, freshest in my mind as a result. I taught this to my wife on October 2nd, and we played two games using the starter decks (Draco Malfoy vs. Hermoine Grainger) since that is all I have for the game right now. The first game I ran Draco and used his attack-oriented spells to put some strong pressure on Hermoine, but her swarm of creatures eventually pushed me into a very narrow loss since a good portion of my blasty spells ended up getting discarded from damage in the early part of the game. We immediately swapped decks and played it again to see how things were different. For a long time I was very much in control with Hermoine, removing Lessons and whittling away on damage. But since my wife wasn’t getting any Creatures into play I had too many unplayable cards that, eventually, she was able to force me to discard with Draco’s ability. My choice to draw cards two different times during the game ultimately led to my demise, as she decked me a turn before my teeny creatures could finish her off and she did a great job of removing my bigger creatures as soon as they arrived – and I was sad to see two of my trolls discarded to damage about halfway through the deck along with my last creature retrieval spell.

Even with just the beginning decks of cards, I was impressed by the difference in approach to the two decklists. One is about getting big creatures out and removing your opponents’ stuff directly, while the other is more about blasting into oblivion. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of variety in either deck, with about half of the 40-card deck being Lessons and the other cards all being repeated in the deck 2-3 times. But I did enjoy the oversized paper playmat that served as a learning guide and the quick, streamlined gameplay offered in this introductory package. It is definitely just a jumping in point, as playing with only these two decks as-is would grow really boring really fast. We may play it another time or two until I can get a smallish set of cards to expand the decks with, but for now this is likely going to sit in idle limbo until I do get said cards – and that’s okay as my wife isn’t likely to get an itch to play a card game with my anytime soon. But I think we’d both be happy to play it again, and the rules are relatively easy so we’ll have no issues picking it back up when it does return to the table.

Spellfire: Master the Magic

This game started as one I was mildly interested in when doing research on the various CCGs that had been produced. I knew I had friends who love D&D and that getting them to play it wouldn’t be difficult, but it was on the higher end of pricing for starter decks and I just wasn’t sold on it being a good game from surface-level research. Thankfully, I happened across a sealed starter deck set locally at an insane deal and picked it up because it was a small risk for trying it out. I played two rounds of Spellfire back on September 5th using those starter decks with a friend. It was a relatively easy teach, but it did not go so smooth as I was mix-up about what a Champion was. In my mind I kept picturing it as the Hero cards with the white helmet icon, so our first failed attempt did not go so well and it was a runway victory for me, as I was the only one consistently drawing Realms to play.

The second game we corrected that ruling, and although it was still pretty lopsided it was far more fun and competitive with some intense battles fought as he decimated my Realms. I spent most of that game without drawing any Champions, and when I finally got some it was too little too late. After the game we were able to better scrutinize the decks and could see the issue: my deck had about half as many champions as the other deck, which was exactly why I couldn’t draw them consistently. However, there was enough fun factor during those skirmishes that we could both see the strong potential in the game and we planned to play it again soon with rebalanced decks.

Well, plans didn’t quite pan out so we’re playing tonight at last and, while those first decks have been rebalanced in terms of composition, I now also have two more decks of cards and a handful of boosters from the Ravenloft set that have been opened so we’ll probably throw two new decks together from that pool of 250-ish cards and test those out to see how it all holds up. Which is where these entries are heading, into being session reports similar to what

Mike Haverty

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did with his “My Journey Back to CCGs” series. Go read them, they are seriously a delight to go through (Geeklist link!). You’ll see a monthly CCG recap like this, and in between some session report/sort review posts that are tailored specifically to one of those old CCGs.

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this. I know I am loving this so far. In addition to this, I’ve started making a series of videos on Spellfire over on my YouTube channel to teach the game – look for links to those to appear soon on the Spellfire BGG Page, or find me as Cardboard Clash on YouTube and subscribe! And so tell me, are there specific CCGs you’d love to read or watch more about?

And in following the tradition started by SiddGames, each post will conclude with my updated plays of each game:

Notes on the Journey

Total Plays(plays since last report)

Final Fantasy = 2(+2)

Harry Potter = 2(+2)

Spellfire = 2(+2)