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What is FFG up to?


#1

So, time’s a-passin’ and things are all very quiet on the Netrunner front. We’re almost out of Africa and I don’t know when R&R is scheduled for. This is not a “we’re all doomed” post. Rather, I presume that FFG have been busy rebuilding all sorts of stuff for Netrunner and are likely to come out with a flurry of announcements soon. (Possibly coordinated with the Euros but the timing is more likely to be dictated by internal considerations.)

What I think/hope (delete is appropriate) is that they will announce deluxe set rotation and will do so by attaching each new deluxe to a data cycle. In this case then what I would like is to see that R&R is the start of a ChiLo cycle. The proof is in the playing but I like the idea of a deluxe which has something for everyone. It also makes organised play much smoother.

If they do this they might rotate out C&C when R&R comes in. Alternately they might decide to rotate out all of the 4 original deluxes at once when Lunar and San San rotate out. Each deluxe was released after each of the first four cycles so there’s a justification for it.

I personally think they’ll rotate out 1 by 1. Three of the four factions in the first two deluxes are in Terminal Directive so there won’t be a significant imbalance in the force.

Anyway, this is idle speculation as I’, just curious to see what anyone else thinks.


#2

Well, Game of Thrones recently got a set of premade beginning decks for each of the houses, and I think that makes a lot of sense for Netrunner as well. It gives newer players an extremely easy jumping in point, and could potentially provide another avenue of purchasing new cards for veteran players as well, depending on how they decide to package it. Seeing the similarity with the houses and the netrunner factions, I would be at least a little surprised if they didn’t do something similar in the future.

No clue about big box rotation. I haven’t heard anything about it, and I guess I’d be a little surprised if they did it, but not super surprised.


#3

I’m really bummed out about how long the revised core was out of stock for. Its release prompted a wave of (mostly pretty positive) reviews and re-reviews of the game in the gaming press, and then it coincidentally got a bunch more coverage when RPS did that feature on jinteki.net. Then we had it featured on a big tv show, in a pretty good way, even if only for 2 minutes. FFG should’ve been ready to pounce on that publicity, but instead they didn’t even have any core sets to sell!

I’d love to be able to give them a pass by saying “well, they were just so focused on building up L5R”, but the fact is they’ve basically only had a single oversized pack released in the past five months!

Things I would’ve liked to have seen:

  1. Promotions for new players: give incentives to retailers to bundle multiple core sets, or a core set and a deluxe, or a core set plus a Kitara subscription. Incentives wouldn’t even need to be discounts, they could have given people a free playmat, or a free cardboard deckbox or something.
  2. More beginner-friendly events (core only tournaments, Cache Refresh tournaments, Core+Kitara league events, etc). OK that;s down to TOs to organise, but TOs can only do so much. Give the TO some incentive, with a cheap and well-stocked prize kit to give out (possibly featuring alt arts of some of the 1x revised core cards, or deckboxes and other things that beginners find useful), send the shop hosting the event some swag and some posters to put up to advertise it, feature stores runnning beginner events on FFG OP’s website. Do you really think someoen who just bought a core set will have heard of alwaysberunning.net so they can go find their closest event?
  3. More support to content creators! People making youtube videos and writing articles for your game are compeltely unacknowledged on FFG’s website, they might as well not exist! There isn’t even a link to the Team Covenant videos anywhere. And it’s not evne like they have their own beginner resources featured on there: the tutorial video on the game’s website IS THE ONE FEATURING THE ORIGINAL CORE SET!

I know all this stuff is WORK and doesn’t happen instantly, but as month after month goes past in which FFG make no effort to promote and support the game, it becomes very frustrating to just watch them releasing packs into the vacuum of space and forgetting about them. It’s like the company is on autopilot with no direction or vision whatsoever.


#4

Idle observation: FFG’s upcoming products page lists O&C/D&D as “Awaiting reprint” with a reasonably recent “Latest update” date. My guess would be that if big box rotation were coming, those boxes would not even be considered for reprinting…unless they’re rotating them out one by one and D&D isn’t going to rotate until 2020 or so? (Hypothetical: C&C rotates late this year, H&P rotates ~six months later, and so on.)


#5

Interesting point. Then again, I just noticed that The Underway and others from San San are “awaiting reprint” but they are next up for rotation. I guess if there is any product which is out of print but is currently meant to be in print, that it may automatically get categorised this way. In fact, checking again, Chrome City has been “awaiting reprint” since February 2017.


#6

I was bored and went back to look at dates.

Crimson Dust came out 8/17. (Announced 5/9/17.)
Sovereign Sight was announced 9/11, alongside Revised Core 2.0. Came out 12/28.
Down the White Nile was announced 10/11. Came out 2/1.
Council of the Crest was announced 11/7. Came out 3/1.
Revised Core came out 12/17.
Devil and the Dragon was announced 12/19. Came out 4/5.
Whispers in Nalubaale was announced 1/11/18. Came out 5/3.
Kampala Ascendent was announced 2/7. Will come out 5/31.
Reign and Reverie was announced 3/6.

It’s interesting that there’s a fairly regular pattern of things coming out this cycle around a little under four months after being announced. If I were to make a prediction, I could see the next cycle getting announced this week, or maybe next. It feels like the FFG PR machines are starting to gear up, since we’re getting close to GenCon (only 71 days!), and they might want to get the announcement of the cycle out there. The X-Wing 2.0 announcement probably has taken a lot of focus from PR, though, since it’s pretty huge.

I’d guess that R&R will come out 6/29, since that fits the spacing from announcement to release pattern, and that’s the last Friday of the month. I could possibly see July being a off-month, or one where they release something light like the Championship decks.


#7

I still don’t know that I believe in deluxe rotation – rotating one product that they said was evergreen once is one thing, but these would be four more.

I would personally be nostalgic for a lot of cards from those four boxes and am not in favour of them rotating, but especially with regard to C&C I also see merit in advocating for rotation.
But I really don’t think it’s as important for the game as changing the core set, so they might just not do it.

FFG has been super behind on announcements before, so I’m not worried yet. I assume they’ll announce a new cycle soon after the last Kitara pack.


#8

RE: Big Box rotation… I don’t see it happening. What I can see happening (and might even be likely) is a Big Box 2.0 type thing. The big difference being that this would be the second (and likely final shot) at balancing the big boxes better than they were upon initial release with no plans to update them afterwards. They could even throw in a few cards from the following cycles that have rotated to help.

The main thing would be that there should be no new cards. Everything in these 2.0 boxes would need to have been released already so that people who purchased these boxes expecting them to be evergreen still have all the cards (we can safely assume that someone who bought the boxes will also have cards from the cycles).

No one is expecting them to rotate the core set, right? As in actual rotation? We’re all pretty set with Core 2.0 being around for a while?


#9

Given the direction they’ve been going in Kitara, I’d be pretty surprised if they didn’t rotate the deluxes. Cards like Reclaim, Compile, and Kabonesa suggest a very different–and, dare I say, better–approach to tutoring and recursion than the one we’ve had since C&C, but will gain very little independent traction as long as we still have Clone Chip and SMC around. I feel like I react to these cards much like I would have to Trypano and Diversion if they had been spoiled before we knew about Core 2.0.


#10

Yup, just like what happened for the first rotation, when the Revised Core was used as an opportunity to both update the original and rescue a few cards, it might be nice to save some Lunar and SanSan goodies by integrating them in a “Revised Creation and Control” of sorts :slight_smile:


#11

This is a good point, actually, and the most compelling argument I have seen for some form of change to the current composition of the deluxes.


#12

Actually, it seems to be pretty common for casual players to just have bought core + the deluxes, so these players are somewhat out of luck with Revised Core, and would be seriously out of luck if the same happened to the deluxes.
But FFG may be willing to risk that.


#13

Except that if they are casual enough to not have bought any cycles, then they probably don’t even care about Core 2.0 (or any future Deluxe 2.0) and will continue playing with their current card pool.

If they add new cards to the Deluxe 2.0 Boxes then competitive players will be forced into buying them all over again. Casuals will either buy them or not (probably not, unless they haven’t already bought into the previous ones).

If they don’t add new cards, then competitive players will be able to keep their current cards and not need to make another purchase (unless they want updated art)… much like Core 2.0.


#14

This, Engolo/Laamb psuedo replacing Kit, and R&R supporting all factions (along with the general dislike of the inconsistent power level of the deluxe boxes) is why many players theorize a deluxe rotation. My suspicion is that we’ll likely get a second all faction box after the post kitara cycle and we’ll get an announcement of all the old deluxe boxes rotating out (possibly with some cards being saved in a 3rd all faction deluxe 2.0) at the same time as the next rotation. There’s just too much cruft in many of the boxes. NBN and Shaper’s were gold, Jinteki/Anarch/Crim were decent, and Weyland/HB got stuck with mostly useless cards.


#15

In reviewing the System Refresh article, it does not mention the Deluxe expansions being evergreen. I’m having trouble finding that in writing anywhere. That being said, with how healthy rotating the Core in favor of the Revised Core has been for the meta, I fully think that rotating the Deluxe expansions will be a great idea if handled as well as the Cores.


#16

So, again, I think there might be confusion in how we talk about this. Do you mean rotation like current rotation (things will be gone after a set amount of time)? Or rotation as in it will just be replaced by something at some point… maybe?

I don’t consider the latter “rotation” simply because the mechanism and rationale are different from what we consider normal rotation.


#17

If they change the deluxes, I certainly prefer them to not include new cards, so no need to convince me.

The only reason I wrote that was that when Revised Core was announced, a number of casual players and new players who only had old core + deluxe boxes got very upset and felt shafted, because they had explicitly bought those products that they were told would always be legal.
I mean, you can never please everybody, and in the case of Revised Core FFG certainly did the right thing, but breaking the promise of certain products being evergreen should still not be done lightly in my opinion.


#18

Sure; by definition, rotation is a thing that only happens to datapacks, so, strictly speaking, deluxes won’t ever rotate. That said, they might nonetheless stop being tournament legal (maybe according to future releases, or by one-shot acts of Boggs, and they might or might not preserve some of the existing cards). We can call this retirement if you prefer, but the distinction is pretty academic.


#19

I hope we don’t rotate deluxe boxes. I feel like a fair chunk of Kitara was already spent scrambling to fill the void left by the first rotation and I don’t think future deluxe boxes need to get caught up in the same design problem.

Rescuing some cards from genesis and spin and purging some of the cards in the old core was FAR better than I expected them to handle that transition but it wasn’t perfect and we don’t need to go overboard. The deluxe boxes are not cheap and they expand on each faction well, why fix what ain’t broke?


#20

I bet the only reason they designed pseudo-replacements for SMC, Clone Chip, etc. in Kitara is that they forgot these are in Creation and Control, not the original Core Set, as everyone has been known to do on occasion.