New Holocron, New RRG, New SET!

Out of nowhere, FFG just dropped a Destiny bomb on us.

Yesterday, with not even a news story to go with it, FFG released a brand new Holocron, a new RRG (Rules Reference Guide) and a brand new, print-at-home set:Transformations.

You can be sure there’ll be plenty of articles coming about this, but for now, here’s a quick hit summary of what just happened, as well as some first thoughts on the 12(ish) new cards:

New Holocron
We’d been waiting for this for a while, and here it is, pretty much exactly as it was in The Gandork Holocron. It’s not surprising the two were similar given The Gandork‘s close association with FFG, but it is a little shocking just how similar they were. The great thing about this though, is we’re no longer in limbo: these changes make what most of us were playing anyway, official.

The restricted list is identical, Armored Reinforcement can only pull Red vehicles, and all the points reductions are exactly the same.

The key change to highlight is that Trandoshan Hunters remain on 9/11. They’re still on the restricted list, so you can’t run them with Face The Enemy or Hidden Motive, but you can still pair two elite Trandoshans with an Imperial Death Trooper.

Also, the Infinite Holocron has a much shorter restricted list. Only Chopper and Abandoned Refinery have been added to this list, meaning you can still play full power 2eTrandoshans in that format.

Finally, the Infinite and Standard (but not Trilogy) Holocrons list Transformations as being legal in those formats from tomorrow (15 July), meaning we can start playing them right away, which is pretty exciting. The timing is perfect for the UK Standard TTS event on 26 July, so sign up now.

Also, this new set has not triggered rotation, which makes sense as it’s only 12 cards.

This is amazing. FFG have given us 12 new cards to play with, all of which are double sided, and which introduce some pretty interesting new mechanics. The new RRG explains the mechanics of these new cards, which is pretty handy.

In summary though, our 12 new cards are all characters, plots or battlefields, meaning it doesn’t really matter what you print them on as they will never enter your deck. They re-use dice from previous sets (cue a hike in the price of Awakenings Vader), and all have mechanics which allow them to flip mid-game (much like Objectives in SW:CCG), changing your team considerably.

All these cards must enter the game on Side A, though you may choose the other side if it has a points cost. This means you can start the game with any one of the Clone Troopers (5B/C/D) on your team, but you can’t start the game with Obi-Wan’s Spirit (3B) in your deck or Mortis on the night side (10B). You also cannot start the game with a unique card which matches the flip side of one of your other cards, so you can’t start with Rescue Han Solo (7A) if you have any Han Solo on your team.

We also have a new term called Team Up, which gives you points discounts for all characters listed on the card. For example, new Luke says Team Up 1: Obi-Wan, Yoda, meaning those characters get a -1 discount when paired with him.

We’ve reproduced all the new cards below with some very quick thoughts, but there will be more.

Both these characters seem pretty good on their own. Anakin is undercosted for his dice sides, but 10 health when you’re hitting yourself for one damage every round hurts. However, that can easily be mitigated through shields, meaning he really does represent exceptional value. His Vader alter ego is a melee monster, who’s Power Action allows you to utilise that 2 disrupt as a 3 melee and/or strip shields. If you manage to convert Anakin to the dark side, you gain 5 health and better dice, but you lose both his character dice for the round as the Vader dice get placed on the card. And yes, you can defeat your own Youngling to turn him to the dark side, if you want to go thematic.

Farm Boy Luke is pretty decent value, especially when he brings a discount to Obi-Wan and Yoda. His Jedi flip side looks pretty nice, with 15 health and 2 free shields every round, though his die sides are underwhelming. I’m not sure we’ll see many people start with the B side. If you do manage the flip, you will gain a huge amount of value, but it’s going to be tough and if you fail after loading him up with some upgrades, the game isn’t likely to go your way. He might make a nice mono-blue pairing with Spark of Hope Yoda and elite United (9A).

Hmmm, 9/12 for a diceless character. And one that it looks like you’re trying to defeat. Clearly aimed at facilitating Luke‘s transition to Jedi-hood, which is nicely thematic, and certainly will make that a bit easier. Removing 4 dice could be utterly game changing, but it’s a bit situational. However, you gain a readied copy of Obi-Wan’s Spirit. A tricky one, but at the moment I’m thinking he’s probably too expensive. I do however like the idea of loading him up with redeploy weapons, get some use out of him, then killing him off for the redeploy, and still getting to roll in his spirit.

Interesting. Free rerolls, free damage, just for playing cards. It’s an expensive plot though for a minor gain. If you’ve got 3 points left I think you’re more likely to play Armored Reinforcement or Profitable Connection. One trick you can do is deliberately trigger the B side when you have no non-event cards you can afford to play. You don’t deal the 1 indirect, but you can flip the plot back allowing you another free-reroll if you play an event.

I’m loving the troopers. The plot looks quite difficult to resolve, though not impossible. The strength of these troopers though for me is ignoring the plot and starting them elite right from the get-go. Echo for instance could be paired with a big character like Spark of Hope Yoda to roll his dice in twice. Fives though is my standout favourite. There’s plenty of ways to get multiple activations out of him or his ability, such as Through The Pass, Fateful Companions and Unfetter, meaning you could be rolling 6 Clone Trooper dice into your pool in a round, each of which has a 89% chance of finishing on a damage or resource side if you control the battlefield.

Closing In is basically a 2 point plot to add to a team with 2 unique bounty hunters (though 3-wide is doable). All you need to do is play a bounty and deal damage to that character (it can even be blocked by shields), and it spawns a powerful downgrade. If you were allowed to put it in your deck, Captured would be the best downgrade ever. As it is, forcing your opponent to give you a resource before they can use their character again is huge, and it’s easy to trigger (perhaps too easy). The designers were smart to force you to exhaust the plot to use its ability, as it would be open to serious abuse otherwise. I think this is going to see some play, in something like eIG-88/eGreedo, eJango/eBoba, eAsajj/eDengar or even Greedo/Dengar/eZuckuss.

Wow, this is a hard plot to trigger. You have to play 5 cards, in the precise order 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, costing a total of 10 resources. To stand a chance, you’re probably pairing eLando for money with maybe Red 5 eLuke for an elite plot, though in infinite you could have fun with new farm boy Luke (8 points), OG Leia (10 points) and Beast Chewie (10 points) for a 33 health start, with the highly unlikely possibility of morphing into an epic 51 health team (if you flip Luke and Han).
However, the real powerhouse here is Han. Start on the B side, and for 13 points you’re looking at maybe the best value support character ever. Sure, you lose the gain 1 resource per round ability, and he has a negative on defeat ability, but that’s easy to play around. I expect to see him cropping up a lot.

Infinite Plot. The downside is pretty big in infinite, but it’s a -1 plot, which, if you get your timing right should be pretty doable to trigger and give you a free resource. Your opponent can stop you by flipping it back before the upkeep, but it’ll probably mess with their timings. Looks fun.

This plot is exactly what mono needs. A 0 cost which does something pretty powerful as a one off, and for 1 cost something very powerful, albeit for a high penalty. This is going to see a lot of play, and the wonderful thing about it is it can’t be played in ReyLo, a Rule Of Two deck, or Han/Qi’ra.

And we finish with another really interesting card. Every time you claim you choose whether it’ll be day or night, meaning you choose between every character healing and every character getting dealt 1 damage. The power to be the one to make this call is huge. This could be good for mill, as they could get the heal on claim and during upkeep, but it’s a double edged sword if they’re not fast enough on the claim. I think this will be more likely to see play in fast aggro decks.

Overall, we’re loving these new cards, and think they’re going to shake things up considerably. The set is small, but every card is playable, and I can’t wait to try them out.

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