Players of X-Wing, Imperial Assault or Netrunner, Big Changes are Coming

Players of X-Wing, Imperial Assault or Netrunner, Big Changes are Coming

Fantasy Flight Games is making big, unprecedented changes to some of its biggest competitive products and some gamers are not happy about it.

Runners and Corps, Rebels and Imperials beware: some big changes are coming to your favorite games. Fantasy Flight Games has released its plans to rebalance two of its biggest competitive products, Android: Netrunner and Star Wars: Imperial Assault.

The changes are meant to address some of the most prolific strategies in each game's competitive scene, ideally allowing new ideas to blossom. It would be hard to argue that no change at all was necessary, but some players might be upset over the details.

In Imperial Assault, a miniatures game set in the Star Wars universe, players can either play campaigns as Rebels versus the Empire, or in a two-to-four-player skirmish mode. The list - meaning the squad set-up - that dominated the skirmish game from the very beginning is known as "Four by Four," and used four Royal Guard units backed up by four Imperial Officers. This allowed for a huge amount extra movement and defensive capability. Both players in the game's championship finals this year were playing "Four by Four."

The changes to IA mean that Officers can't give free movement points to other units quite as efficiently, while the Guards are unable to protect each other, only non-Guard units. At the same time, the Rebel's Saboteurs have taken a hit to their ability to tear through squads of clumped together units like tissue paper.

Android: Netrunner is a competitive card game, wherein one player takes on the role of a computer hacker, or Runner, and their opponent plays a megacorporation (a Corp) trying to keep them out of their servers. It's an asymmetrical heist game, and FFG's changes to it are aimed at strategies both old and new.

Notably, from the game's Core Set, the cards "Desperado," "Parasite," "Yog.0," "Astroscript Pilot Program," and "SanSan City Grid" have all been nerfed. Players can still include the cards in their decks as they are, but at a greater cost. Normally when deck-building, players use "influence" to include out-of-faction cards in their decks; the cards subject to FFG's changes will now cost extra influence, even in-faction.

The changes also affect some favorite cards that have come out since the Core Set, such as those found in the world champion's deck, so if you play in the competitive scene you should take a look at how your own decks might be affected.

Update: the Star Wars LCG (Living Card Game) has also undergone some changes about how its list of restricted objectives work. Now, specific objective sets cannot be combined together. Check it out!

X-Wing Miniatures will require, in tournament settings, use of the new damage deck that comes with the The Force Awakens core set.

Source: Fantasy Flight Games

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Amusingly the Star Wars LCG also changed it's restricted list. Only, now, instead of the restricted lists being global (you can only include one objective set from the list in your deck, though you can have two copies), they're now specific objective sets that are restricted from being used with each other, such as combining The False Report with Against All Odds. But those won't conflict with future restricted combinations.

Starke:
Amusingly the Star Wars LCG also changed it's restricted list. Only, now, instead of the restricted lists being global (you can only include one objective set from the list in your deck, though you can have two copies), they're now specific objective sets that are restricted from being used with each other, such as combining The False Report with Against All Odds. But those won't conflict with future restricted combinations.

Thanks for letting me know, I updated the article. I don't play the Star Wars LCG so wasn't paying attention to it - is this better or worse than the way it worked before?

Okay, and how exactly does FFG think i should come in possession of these errata'd versions of cards? Buy them a second time with another text?

This makes sense in MTG, where they can refine card texts (but never directly change cards) from one edition to another via a reprint.
But Netrunner isn't a TCG, i'm not constantly buying new packs or playin' limited format to get new stuff. So if they reprint these cards now, that deal has to be pretty dandy, because it would have to have these erratas AND some new cards.
Because i can't see any casual player grabbin' the same cards he already has.

PatrickJS:

Starke:
Amusingly the Star Wars LCG also changed it's restricted list. Only, now, instead of the restricted lists being global (you can only include one objective set from the list in your deck, though you can have two copies), they're now specific objective sets that are restricted from being used with each other, such as combining The False Report with Against All Odds. But those won't conflict with future restricted combinations.

Thanks for letting me know, I updated the article. I don't play the Star Wars LCG so wasn't paying attention to it - is this better or worse than the way it worked before?

It's an improvement. It allows them to restrict specific abusive combos, without locking out a lot of unrelated objective sets in the process. Because of how deck construction in Star Wars works (you select cards in pre-constructed slates of six, rather than individually), this was in the process of turning into a bigger issue before the new FAQ released.

Adeptus Aspartem:
Okay, and how exactly does FFG think i should come in possession of these errata'd versions of cards? Buy them a second time with another text?

This makes sense in MTG, where they can refine card texts (but never directly change cards) from one edition to another via a reprint.
But Netrunner isn't a TCG, i'm not constantly buying new packs or playin' limited format to get new stuff. So if they reprint these cards now, that deal has to be pretty dandy, because it would have to have these erratas AND some new cards.
Because i can't see any casual player grabbin' the same cards he already has.

FFG rarely releases copies of the cards with Errata. Actually, WotC is kind of unusual in that respect. That said, I know LotR and first edition Game of Thrones both got reprints with corrected text. For Netrunner? I don't know. But, given how well it's sold, future copies of the Core Set might include the revised text.

Oh, right, that's the other major FFG rule change. The Game of Thrones LCG has been migrated to an entirely new edition. With a lot of changes. It's not quite a new game, though from what I'm told, it does away with some of the weirder idiosyncrasies of first edition. (Though, "rule change" might be understating it somewhat, because it's an entire reengineering of the game, with an entirely new card pool. Still.)

Only play Imperial Assault in campaign, so these don't really affect me. I can understand why they make these changed in competitive play though.

As for X-Wing, they make changes all the time, new errats pop up at least every couple of months, so nothing new for us to look out for.

Adeptus Aspartem:
Okay, and how exactly does FFG think i should come in possession of these errata'd versions of cards? Buy them a second time with another text?

This makes sense in MTG, where they can refine card texts (but never directly change cards) from one edition to another via a reprint.
But Netrunner isn't a TCG, i'm not constantly buying new packs or playin' limited format to get new stuff. So if they reprint these cards now, that deal has to be pretty dandy, because it would have to have these erratas AND some new cards.
Because i can't see any casual player grabbin' the same cards he already has.

For Netrunner the cards haven't changed, you just have to pay 1 influence in deckbuilding for each of them you are using. It means memorising the list if you want to play at the top end of tournaments, otherwise it's all handled by your deckbuilder. If you aren't using one just print that list out when you make decks, and also start using a deckbuilder.

Don't play the skirmish mode of Imperial Assault anyway only the campaign so couldn't care less.
This sort of stuff always happens when they rebalance a game to make it fairer whether it is online or tabletop, a broken rule/card is usually an error, which in a computer game would get patched out, why would a tabletop/card game be any different. People that are complaining maybe need to use a bit of imagination and creativity instead of just copying someone else's deck/squad.
Magic the Gathering spends a lot of its time rebalancing with every new release, often reprinting or just removing cards entirely, the tournament scene is as strong as ever. A good player would adapt his strategy to take into account new cards and ideas, instead of just taking the hump.
If a full group of miniatures was just removed because the company couldn't be arsed to redress the balance, I'm sure the complainers would have a reason to do so, but rules tweaks are nothing new and keep the game fresh.

Adeptus Aspartem:
Okay, and how exactly does FFG think i should come in possession of these errata'd versions of cards? Buy them a second time with another text?

FFG usually puts up a PDF on their website that has all the changes for free. I think they will also have the changes when they print new copies of the cards. However I have been to 2 local X Wing tournaments and each time the hosts handed out the changes to use in case we didnt have them.

 

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