Response to Lucas Licensing's Response

Discussion in 'Games: CCG, TCG, and Boardgames' started by Red84, Jan 8, 2002.

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  1. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    His response is pretty interesting. My main problems are: 1) Which players exactly did they talk to? and 2) It's very obvious that LL has the "If you build it, they will come" attitude--how it is he can make the statement "This was a very difficult decision given the strengths of both companies, our long history with Decipher, and the considerable investment that many players had already made in the existing games." and then in the very next sentence say "In the end, we felt we had to do what was right for the fans in the long run, knowing that our decision would not be well received by everyone." is beyond me. That just doesn't make any sense if he took the "considerable investment" into account.
  2. HisstKa Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2001
    Well, there has been alot of talk on that other SWCCG site and lemme tell ya, when Howard said: "That vision encompassed an improved game that could broaden the player base by offering a multi-layered experience within a single game (as opposed to multiple games for different audiences)" it was a slam!
  3. Darth Ludicrous Manager Emeritus

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    Jun 25, 2000
    star 5
    the license is only being improved by moving it to Wizards.
    the rules and gameplay of the decipher game was very erratic. For instance whenever new expansions came out there would be completely new rule books.. often very hard to obtain unless you were one of the obsessed who plunked down gobs on entire boxes. Also, the game was packaged too much toward the collector rather than the player.
  4. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    Tell me, Darth, if the game was that impossible, how is it it held the spot behind MTG as the #2 CCG in the world from its inception in 1995 till Pokemon bumped it (and Magic) down a spot in late 1999. The SWCCG never dropped past 4th on that same list. So, DL, I don't think your statement is conducive with the facts.
  5. Darth Ludicrous Manager Emeritus

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    Jun 25, 2000
    star 5
    it's amazing what name recognition can do for a product, isn't it?
    I don't know anyone personally who plays the game and sales at my comic shop are stale, I really wonder who is playing.
  6. 1stAD Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 10, 2001
    star 5
    -For a long time, releases were few and far between. Collectors and players alike were able to pick up the cards they wanted in between each expansion. Then there came the deluge of expansions. I found the game impossible to continue and quit.
    -Each set would ADD pages of new game mechanics. It was fun for a while, but eventually it got tedious to learn and remember every little rule for a card. Look at how big the stupid glossary book is for SW:CCG and compare it to the errata sheet and banned list for Magic. In a short time Decipher manages to surpass Magic in this regard.
    -Who needs five or more different copies of each main character?
    -Each expansion had the feel that it was designed to counter some hugely abusive strategy in a previous expansion.
    -The games take too long. Tournaments take the whole day to get through.
    -The game is too complex for an average player to get into.
    -Reflections. Buying a huge ammount of cards I would never buy in the hope of getting a foil or special card not available anywhere else.


    That's all I can think of right now. I hope Wizards' new game will do well, because I have lost faith in Decipher.
  7. DuffMan Jedi Knight

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    Jan 4, 2002
    Dl your full of crap. I know for a fact that all card/comic shops in my city carry the swccg and to tell you the truth it is very hard to buy cards from these shops since they often sell out due to the high demand for this product, now I dont know what area you have your shop in but I know that it is very popular in my community. Anyways Im ganna have to ask the same question Red84 asked, what players did they interveiw? I know if myself or my freinds were asked weather they should give the liscense to Wotc we wouldnt needed to think we would firmly say NO. I think if they wanted to know what we wanted they should have done an online pole or something where we could have all had our word in on this decision.
  8. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    Yeah, Darth, the name did wonders for Jedi Knights and Young Jedi--which were actually easier games to play.

    And AD, you obviously ignored my explanation of what the Glossary is. It is NOT a book full of errata. It is a book that merely clarifies gametext and rules. The majority of the community didn't have a problem with it because its contents were only relevant to the decks/cards you played. In other words, the Glossary is NOT "required reading". It's a reference document--like a dictionary or encyclopedia.
  9. Darth Ludicrous Manager Emeritus

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    Jun 25, 2000
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    you shouldn't be required to have an encyclopaedia handy just to play a game.
    So much of the CCG hinged on exactly how cards were worded. There was much confusion over many cards for this reason.

    1stad summed up all my problems perfectly.
  10. LanceJade Jedi Master

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    Mar 26, 2001
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    DL - I played the game and still do. I also used to play Magic the Gathering, but got sick of the tourney rules banning cards and changing rules. Look, I never had to worry about that with SW:CCG, and I know that with WotC we will have issues with that.

    I received the same response from LFL about my letter informing them I WILL NOT be purchasing any WotC card game. I have invested way too much into the Decipher card's and will not purchase any WotC cards. It may be the greatest card game ever, but hell, I dont have time. Forget it.
  11. Darth Ludicrous Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2000
    star 5
    Decipher has banned cards.

    Asteroid Sanctuary was it?
  12. Roddd Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 8, 2002
    There are no banned cards in SWCCG. Asteroid Sanctuary was never banned. There is errata for the card and it was immediately issued (and could be obtained by mail).

    The only card that is banned by Decipher for tournament play is still "Raise The Stakes" from Star Trek CCG. One should expect Decipher to never ban cards since it is not their general policy.
  13. Artie-Deco Jedi Knight

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    Aug 23, 2001
    star 3
    Decipher doesn't "ban" cards, they just errata them until they are useless. Look at Seekers.

    The glossary and supplement to glossary are extremely annoying. You can't go to a serious tournament without reviewing EVERY CARD to see if it is in the glossary or supplement.

    But as to the main topic of this thread....

    Obviously, WOTC just pushed all the right buttons with LFL. Look at these excerpts from Roffman's response:

    "Wizards had a better vision"
    "an improved game" (implying the existing game needed improvement)
    "broaden the player base" (implying they believe Decipher's player base to be narrow)
    "designed by Richard Garfield himself" (this is like saying "directed by George Lucas himself")
    "an improved organized play system that would support players better than ever before" (implying Decipher's system was flawed)

    LFL saw an opportunity to take the CCG license from the #2 company and give it to the #1 company.

    One observation I'm making is that even those who defend Decipher are really only defending SW:CCG. But LFL's decision is an indictment against all three Decipher games. We SW:CCG players have been as vocal in our criticism of YJ and JK as anyone else. In a sense, our criticisms of YJ and JK just prove Roffman's point, that Decipher lacks vision.

  14. Roddd Jedi Padawan

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    Jan 8, 2002
    One word: Hasbro.

    There is no other reason. Everything else is just used to deceive people because they know people will believe anything they say.
  15. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    Again your knowledge of the CCG fails you.

    34 cards errata-ed (at least 10 of which are same texts: like I'd Just As Soon Kiss A Wookie/It Can Wait, LS and DS Undercover, Luke Skywalker/Luke's Cape, etc.)

    0 banned cards

    And I'm sorry, but I can't think of any popular game (except board games) that doesn't have some sort of reference document that clarifies the rules of the game--and I'm talking from the most popular CCGs to "games" like baseball and football. It's just teh nature of the beast.
  16. Darth Ludicrous Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2000
    star 5
    aye, games have rules. but Michael Jordan doesn't need to keep an official NBA rule book in his back pocket to play the game.
  17. Roddd Jedi Padawan

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    Jan 8, 2002
    Right. That's what referees and tournament directors are for. TDs don't bite if you ask them a question.
  18. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    Nope, just the refs do...just like the TDs. But does that mean he hasn't read some of the rules?

    Like anything, how good one wants to be usually depends on how much time and effort one is willing to spend on one's craft. Like Artie said, to attend a serious tournament (like a championship), yeah you should know as much as possible because the level of competiton is higher. And chances are, players who attend those tournies are high-level gamers: players who usually don't care that they have to read rulings or who are at least used to it. Believe me, at casual tournies players don't pay attention to every clarification and whatnot.

    Anyone can play basketball, but to take your game to another level, a player will want to know what they can and can't do at whatever point in the game. That's the difference between a "casual" gamer and a "hardcore" one. Not that you need to be either or to have fun.
  19. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

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    Jan 27, 2000
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    >>-Each set would ADD pages of new game mechanics....Look at how big the stupid glossary book is for SW:CCG and compare it to the errata sheet and banned list for Magic. <<

    The glossary was used for reference purpsoes mainly, usually not needed unless you were not familar with certain special cards (like sabaac, bluff rules, search parties, etc) and personally, i prefer to have all of those in one spot instead of wasting cardspace gametext.


    >>-Who needs five or more different copies of each main character?<<

    Because they each function differently and represent the characters under different circumstances.

    >>-The games take too long. Tournaments take the whole day to get through. <<

    I think the games length is just right...just epic enough to be reprentative of the films but not too short as to be unfulfilling.

    >>-The game is too complex for an average player to get into. <<

    I don't think it is...beyond the attrition concept, the game is pretty straight forward.

    >>-Reflections. Buying a huge ammount of cards I would never buy in the hope of getting a foil or special card not available anywhere else<<

    More aimed at the collectors than the players, but also a great way of getting extra copies of certain cards for decks and such...not to mention it's still the best way for a beginning player to get a decent variety and selection of cards in their collection when getting started.
  20. DuffMan Jedi Knight

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    Jan 4, 2002
    "The games take too long. Tournaments take the whole day to get through."

    Each game does no take that long, probably on the average of 30 min for each game. Granted a tournement does take up a whole day but thats the fun of it, a whole day reserved for competing in a swccg tournament, would you want a tournament to last just a coupl og hours?
  21. DarthBinky Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 8, 2002
    I COLLECT THE CARDS FOR ART REFERENCE AND RARELY DO I PLAY, MANAGING A THEATRE GIVES ME LITTLE TIME FOR MUCH OF ANYTHING ELSE. SO FAR, NO ONE HAS METIONED THE FACT THAT, AND WHAT I THINK IS THE REAL REASON THAT DECIPHER GOT THE SHAFT, IS THIS. WOTC IS OWNED BY WHO? ANYONE ANYONE, HASBRO. WHO OWNS 10% OF HASBRO, THE MAKERS OF THE FIGS AND VEHICALS FOR STAR WARS, ANYONE ANYONE, GEORGE LUCAS. PUT TWO AND TWO TOGETHER, AND METHINKS DECIPHER NEVER QUITE HAD A SNOWBALLS CHANCE. AND THIS WHOLE THING OF CONSULTING PLAYERS, WHAT, MAGIC PLAYERS MAYBE. AS FOR THE OTHER TWO STAR WARS CCG'S, HERE IN ALTOONA PA, YOU COULDN'T GIVE THEM AWAY. A BAD DECISION I THINK, AND AS SOME HAVE MENTIONED, IF WOTC GAME SUCKS DONKEYS HARD, WOULD DECIPHER REALLY WANT IT BACK AFTER BEING TREATED THIS WAY. THEY COULD HAVE JUST AS EASILY IMPROVED THE SYSTEM AND MINOR THINGS AND DONE JUST AS GOOD AS ANYONE ELSE. BUT HEY, WHO ARE WE?, I'LL TELL YOU. WE ARE THE ONES WHO PAYS GEORGES' BILLS AND PUTS FOOD ON HIS KIDS PLATES. DON'T BITE THE HAND THAT FEEDS YOU. YEAH I KNOW, THE CCG BIZ WON'T MAKE A GREAT DENT IN THE GRAND SCEME OF THINGS, BUT IT MAY JUST ADD UP IF HE'S NOT CAREFUL. :D
  22. glen Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Oct 1, 2001
    The main reason that this changeover happened has little to do with which company could do better with the games....
    Instead, it boils down to control & money.
    Lucas has a stake in Hasbro (10% ownership I believe) and Hasbro now owns WOTC. Seems pretty simple that Lucas & Co. would want a company that they own a stake in to put out the games. More control, more money....if it offends people, so what.
    I'll reserve judgement til April when the WOTC game premieres, but I can't say that no matter how fantastic the game is that I would be in any hurry to buy all over again...
  23. Teknobabel Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2000
    star 5
    After reading that little thing up on the force.net ccg page and up at the other site I have come to a couple of conclusions

    1) Matey boy who wrote that is running scared of all the stuff he has seen up on the net, for a few reasons that come clear in what he has written.
    eg: "and would be designed by Richard Garfield himself " Who cares if Richard Garfield designed the new game? Not I. If it said "designed by George Lucas himself" then I would accept that, otherwise, it doesn't seem like that much of drawcard to me

    and because of the line "Wizards is also a great company and holds a very special position as the originator of the CCG format and the creator of Magic: The Gathering."
    So? So what if they made M:TG, Is there a reason that Garfield has to put adds for another ccg made a subsidiary in his press reports? Or is he saying "Look, they made M:TG, they MUST be good!"

    2nd conclusion
    "Sometimes change is hard to accept, but our experience has been that change can be a good thing, and a way of encouraging greater creativity and innovation"
    Well I've already thought of about 500 new swear words to describe Mr Garfield, so he's not wrong there (No offence to the man himself, of course).

    3rd Conclusion
    "This was a very difficult decision given the strengths of both companies, our long history with Decipher, and the considerable investment that many players had already made in the existing games. In the end, we felt we had to do what was right for the fans in the long run, knowing that our decision would not be well received by everyone."
    Once again, our friend at Lucas marketing cannot hold to a single line of argument. He praises Decipher for their long relationship, then says "to hell with em, we know exactly what we want, and you aren't it."
    A few more observations about this piece of hypocritical claptrap.

    When he says "we had to do what was right for the fans in the long run" What gave him that idea, did we see any polls up on the official site?
    Surely Wotc, (being a wholly owned subsidiary of Hasbro, and Lucas owning 10% of Hasbro) gotten a real cheap mates rates deal on advertising? After all, that's why theres an advertising inquiry link on the bottom right of the official site's forums, isn't it?

    "Not every decision I have made has been right, but I can tell you that every product decision is motivated first and foremost by whether it will result in a better experience for the fans of Star Wars."

    I would like to add the words " and make more ca$h as well, why else would we give the licence to a subsidiary?"

    Thank you for your time
  24. Auge_Der_Sturm Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 2
    Whoever said that the deluge of expansions in recent years led to the demise of the game hit the nail on the head. Too much product, too many gameplay changes, not enough time to acclimate. I loved the CCG since the first day but stopped playing after Cloud City, and stopped serious collecting with Endor. I was turned off by YJ and never even bothered with JK. When the game started it seemed to be more fan oriented but by TPM it had fallen into the same category of mass-market product placement where the rest of SW merchandise had been languishing. I'm interested to see what WOTC has in store - the world of SWCCG needs a fresh start.
  25. Red84 SWCCG Content Mgr. (Card Games)

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    I think it would be fair to point out that LFL decides the direction of their products, including the CCG. Take a look at some of the stuff Decipher proposed. ALL of the "fan-friendly" stuff was rejected by Lucas Licensing. So if you're going to blame Decipher, you have to also blame LL. And if LL did that to D, what makes you think WOTC will be able to make it any more "fan-friendly"?

    Such is the double-edged sword of working within someone else's license.
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