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It’s a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the Evil Galactic Empire.

These simple words, appeared for the first time in the theaters of the world almost 40 years ago, were destined to have such an impact on our culture we couldn’t even imagine at that time. In the last decades, we had new movies coming and with them a plethora of books, comics, gadgets and toys arrived with the Star Wars logo on. And clearly we also had boardgames. Some were (or still are) incredibly good, some others were emberassing, some others just fun: but the truth is that there is already a plenty of games to choose from.


Then, why the need of a new game? What makes Destiny interesting?

Destiny is a bizarre game. A rather unusual one, I’d say. Usually from a Star Wars game we’d expect to see a specific story arch taken from the movies used as setting for the game. And if an entire story arch isn’t possible, then we had very solid games telling different stories set in the same universe, or we’re ready to field miniatures to revisit specific moments of the classics. But Destiny… it’s different from any of these games. Destiny focuses on characters and vehicles and items that made their appearances during the whole narrative arch covered by the 7 movies. This means that you can field Dooku with Vader against Luke with Han. Or have the Millennium Falcon landing on Coruscant. And so on. Indeed, it’s anachronistic. And chaotic. But it’s also a load of fun! Have you ever had a discussion with friends where you were assessing that Qui-Gon would have been able to beat Vader with just one hand and no one believed you? Well, now you can show them how it could have ended.

So, Destiny for me spells freedom. The freedom to try the unthinkable, to create a sort of temporal revolution and finally have all the champions we ever loved at our disposal to enact the most improbable battles and rage war throughout the starred galaxy.


But how’s the game played?

First of all you need a deck to play with, and in order to have a deck you must first select the characters you’ll be playing with. You have a total of 30 points to recruit some characters. The recruitment cost for a character is expressed in terms of point value, and some characters have two different point values separated by a backslash. This simply means that if you recruit the more expensive version of the character, that character will be allowed to roll two character dice during gameplay; if you choose the cheapest, you’ll be rolling only one die. At this point you need to build up your deck of 30 cards, featuring colors matching the colors of the characters you will field. So, you can’t add Rogue (yellow) cards to your deck unless at least one of your characters belongs to the Rogue faction. And clearly you cannot add cards from the dark side pool if you’re playing characters belonging to the light side.

At this point you’re ready to go: you field the characters, put your battlefield on the table, and roll for initiative. The player winning initiative decides which of the two battlefields will be used for the entire game. The player whose battlefield is not used gains two shield tokens, and the game’s ready to begin.

Each turn players may perform one of the following actions:

- play a card from their hand, by paying its resource cost and following the instructions on the card
- activate a character or a support card, by rolling its die (dice) into the dice pool
- resolve dice featuring the same symbol (for those familiar with RuneBound, the system is the same: you’re allowed to resolve as an action any number of dice in your pool showing the same symbol)
- discard a card from hand to reroll any number of his dice
- use a card action, usually by paying a cost or exhausting the card, as per instructions on the card
- claim the battlefield, which is feasible only if you’re the first player to pass in a given turn; upon claiming the battlefield, you resolve the claim as written on the specific battlefield you’re using (for example, “when this battlefield is claimed, then gain XY”

After both player passed, they refresh their exhausted cards, generate 2 resources, and may discard any number of cards from their hand, to draw new cards until they have 5 in hand.

The game ends when one side manages to have all characters belonging to the other side defeated, or one player with no cards in hand is forced to draw from an empty deck


So, is this game fun?

Yes, it’s a lot of fun. First of all, it’s incredibly fast (one game is played under 30 minutes) without lacking in strategic depth. Having a good timing in dice resolution is vital, and so is understanding when to conceed an initial edge to claim a battlefield and strike first during the following round. Often chosing between spending cards to reroll dice and using some mediochre results could mean the difference between life and death. And sure, there’s luck involved (after all it’s a dice game, where the dice pool is assembled in function of the cards we draw and put into play), but good decks will almost always win over bad decks, and minds good at proper strategy will rarely loose a game to bad luck because they’re given a lot of options to control the impact of luck on the game.

Additionally, results on dice are different enough to allow a lot of builds to be effective: some players will just go for mere damage, while others could enjoy more focusing on dice and resource manipulations, and some others finally will just mill your deck to oblivion. Factions seem to be very well characterized both in terms of theme and in terms of specific damage.


And what about the distribution model?

Well, as you know, the game is a collectible. Some people will love it (the magic of opening a booster and see what’s inside, the fun of trading the cards with friends and play together), some people will hate it. Some people will say that collectibles are money pits deeper than any LCG ever existed, some others will assess the contrary; truth is we could debate the whole night without reaching any conclusion able to have both sides happy. But regardless of all of this, I think there’s something very important to tell: the game is varied enough and so brilliant and allows so many solutions that having that legendary card or just going with something more moderate will not ruin the fun of the game. Get the starters, a few booster packs, take a few friends, and go play. Every game will be different and fun. And then, if you love it and wanna start the collection, well, the whole galaxy is there, waiting for you.

_____________________________________________


DISCLAIMER: I had the chance to demo an earlier version of the game, and received permission to post this review. I don’t have any info on the final quality of the dice, nor on the frequency of cards, and my hinsights on rules is limited to what my memory remembers. I still hope this review could answer some of the questions the community had
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Justin Bolles
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Thanks for the review!
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sacha cauvin
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Thanks scarlett.
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Elijah
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What I find upsetting is when FFG announced the LCG model, they had an article in which they explained the reason for moving to the model and how it was good for consumers, etc.

And here we are with a collectible model.

So for me, I do not care how good of a game it is, I will never purchase it solely out of principle.

Thanks for the review though!
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derp wrote:
What I find upsetting is when FFG announced the LCG model, they had an article in which they explained the reason for moving to the model and how it was good for consumers, etc.

And here we are with a collectible model.

So for me, I do not care how good of a game it is, I will never purchase it solely out of principle.

Thanks for the review though!


They are benefits to LCGs and there are benefits to CCGs. FFG acknowledges that and pretty much always has.

You can spend less money on CCGs than on LCGs and still have a great time. It all depends how you play and how far you're willing to take it.
 
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I will at least check it out by buying 2 Starters with a friend. If they do support Draft and we like the game, we will mostly be drafting. I will not hunt down certain rares like I did with other games. And I will certainly not try to collect all the cards.
 
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derp wrote:
What I find upsetting is when FFG announced the LCG model, they had an article in which they explained the reason for moving to the model and how it was good for consumers, etc.

And here we are with a collectible model.

So for me, I do not care how good of a game it is, I will never purchase it solely out of principle.

Thanks for the review though!

Asmodee made them do it.
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Destrio Dai
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A mash of Runebound combat with the hand management of an lcg to a lesser degree on top of a CCG and star wars theme. My concern is depth given that games could be 4 rounds short if you draw up to 5 cards though once you buy boosters having the full 30 deck instead of starter 20 would give players more room to discard.

Not sold on the model especially since pre-asmodee they came up with the lcg lines but glad to see it is not a dice masters clone.
 
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Julia
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Destrio wrote:
A mash of Runebound combat with the hand management of an lcg to a lesser degree on top of a CCG and star wars theme. My concern is depth given that games could be 4 rounds short if you draw up to 5 cards though once you buy boosters having the full 30 deck instead of starter 20 would give players more room to discard


I'm really into LCGs (to the point that I was tester for two of their lines) and I didn't find this game to be lacking in depth (if this may be of help). My plays lasted around 25-30 minutes each, so, it's not exactly play-destroy opponent-win-repeat
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Tommy Roman
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That was a comprehensive and objective review. Thanks.

I used to play several CCG formats but ultimately gave them up because of the various issues that arose with the distribution model. When FFG piloted the LCG format, it made a lot of business sense and was a step forward for customer/player engagement. I'll probably continue to buy ANR until they stop making it.

The return to the CCG model seems like a step backward, and the line given at the In-Flight Report (now we offer collectors their own piece of Star Wars) sounds more excuse than thoughtful enterprise. I don't doubt that it's a good game that offers an engaging degree of depth and strategy, but the CCG label is a non-starter for me personally.

I also think the dice-as-resource mechanic has been better implemented in another game. I've been very impressed with Ashes RotP from Plaid Hat Games. It's got characters, dice, a great theme, depth, (better) artwork and it's NOT a CCG.

Of course, Asmodee is merging with F2Z (owner of Plaid Hat Games), so who knows how they'll manage to screw it up...
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Julia
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tommygunn2011 wrote:
The return to the CCG model seems like a step backward, and the line given at the In-Flight Report (now we offer collectors their own piece of Star Wars) sounds more excuse than thoughtful enterprise. I don't doubt that it's a good game that offers an engaging degree of depth and strategy, but the CCG label is a non-starter for me personally.


My two cents on the matter (I don't like collectible, but I'm trying to give an objective point of view, so, my personal opinion doesn't matter). In the last months, FFG

- produced an adventure card game (Warhammer: Quest), with no deckbuilding involved and a campaign structure to create an antagonist to Pathfinder the ACG
- created an app enabling full coop / solo games for Descent, entering the territory of coop dungeon crawl where other realities have already established a good base, and they announced the app for Imperial Assault that will do the same
- entered the fantasy miniature market with RuneWars: the miniature game
- entered the collectible games market with Star Wars: Destiny

all these points for me mean that they are simply trying to become bigger and bigger and enter different areas of the market where they were not present. So, I don't think SW: Destiny is a step back because they are still supporting all their LCG lines (heck, there are two brand new lines of LCGs arriving in the next months), it's simply a game that is meant for a different-from-usual audience (but yeah, I get that many will be pissed off by the choice)

The only thing I can add is that I played a few games with a couple of different decks, and I didn't feel a power creep towards ultra rare cards, so, the collectible aspect here seems more something related to "I wanna get that iconic character" rather than "I need that ultrarare card to win, take my wallet", which is possibly not so bad

This has nothing to do with a choice made on principle, i.e. not getting the game due to its collectible format, which is a sound principle I 100% respect
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Destrio Dai
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Depth certainly does help. I like their LCGs too which is why ironically if they expand this game to LCG proportions, the collectible aspect of the game will be exacerbated. Competitiveness might not be affected much by missing out on some rares in a small game but would get riskier with each new rare introduced even if the cards are balanced rather than making rares powerful. I do think it is a step backward when it comes to gamers even if there is a collectors market out there that they're trying to tap into.

I am keeping my eye on it in spite of the CCG aspect due to the gameplays positive introduction thus far but sad to see they chose this type of distribution model to finance it. Not a principle against collecting or lottery style products but that it hurts the gaming aspect in my opinion. Keep rares with collectible trading cards and out of games IMO.
 
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Scarlet Witch wrote:

- produced an adventure card game (Warhammer: Quest), with no deckbuilding involved and a campaign structure to create an antagonist to Pathfinder the ACG


All signs point to that game being dead in the water.

- Zero Warhammer and/or Warhammer 40K games or expansions announced from FFG at Gencon.
- The Warhammer Conquest LCG is putting out expansion packs at a faster rate that they ever had... with no new waves on packs in sight (a first in the LCG model).
- Warhammer adventure card game got quick Print on Demand mini-expansions instead of larger ones, released without any marketing made about them (for a game that was selling very well).
- They announced RuneWars miniature... which will be the most direct competition to Warhammer that will exist on the market.

... me thinks FFG lost the license with Games Workshop. Many predicted this last year when Games Workshop started back it's specialist line and started to do boardgames again.
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deedob wrote:
Scarlet Witch wrote:

- produced an adventure card game (Warhammer: Quest), with no deckbuilding involved and a campaign structure to create an antagonist to Pathfinder the ACG


All signs point to that game being dead in the water


I fullheartedly agree with you on this point; this doesn't mean that they will let the game die there, tho: the game can be resurrected by means of a theme reskin with another setting. It'd not be the first time such a thing happens. In my previous post, I just wanted to show how they're trying to enter different markets instead of remaining in their comfort zone
 
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Scarlet Witch wrote:
deedob wrote:
Scarlet Witch wrote:

- produced an adventure card game (Warhammer: Quest), with no deckbuilding involved and a campaign structure to create an antagonist to Pathfinder the ACG


All signs point to that game being dead in the water


I fullheartedly agree with you on this point; this doesn't mean that they will let the game die there, tho: the game can be resurrected by means of a theme reskin with another setting. It'd not be the first time such a thing happens. In my previous post, I just wanted to show how they're trying to enter different markets instead of remaining in their comfort zone


Nah... FFG was always this way, putting new concepts forward and trying new markets.

- They're the one that pushed licensed boardgames and actually proved to people they could be more than hastily-made crap games we had before (Doom, Starcraft, Warcraft...).
- They invented the LCG model
- They pushed component quality up so much, other had to follow suit.
- The first well-known humongous, highly priced, boardgame was TI3. I remember on BGG people thought it was insane to put out such a game... nowadays half the games being released are as insane as TI3 was back in the day.
- They went into miniature games a long time ago. Dust Tactics and Dust Warfare started with them.

I personally think Destiny is one of their LEAST inspired designs. It's so "generic" looking compared to other stuff on the market it surprises me it came from FFG. Not saying it's a "bad" game... but it's derivative to be sure.
We are a long way from the uniqueness of Android (the boardgame), StarCraft, Twilight Imperium, Lord of the Rings LCG and other such "unique" games (when they were released).
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deedob wrote:

I personally think Destiny is one of their LEAST inspired designs. It's so "generic" looking compared to other stuff on the market it surprises me it came from FFG. Not saying it's a "bad" game... but it's derivative to be sure.


I guess? After watching the Team Covenant demo, "derivative" is hardly how I'd describe the game. The most similar game on the market is, of course, Dice Masters, and they are entirely different games - to the point that I cringe when I hear people compare them. What, exactly, do you find it derivative of? Perhaps I just need to expand my CCG horizons (which are admittedly small).
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How are the dice themselves? they seem like stickers placed on dice
 
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languin wrote:
How are the dice themselves? they seem like stickers placed on dice


Scarlet Witch wrote:

DISCLAIMER: I had the chance to demo an earlier version of the game, and received permission to post this review. I don’t have any info on the final quality of the dice, nor on the frequency of cards, and my hinsights on rules is limited to what my memory remembers. I still hope this review could answer some of the questions the community had
 
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languin wrote:
How are the dice themselves? they seem like stickers placed on dice


They're definitely NOT plastic stickers on the dice. The images are printed on the dice and then sealed. FFG clarified this somewhere, but I don't have the link handy. You'll have to take my word for it, google it, or rely on someone else to provide it.
 
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Justin R
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derp wrote:
What I find upsetting is when FFG announced the LCG model, they had an article in which they explained the reason for moving to the model and how it was good for consumers, etc.

And here we are with a collectible model.

So for me, I do not care how good of a game it is, I will never purchase it solely out of principle.

Thanks for the review though!


I...just don't understand this position. I understand not liking a CCG model, but you can choose to participate precisely as much as you want. And then, as with every popular CCG ever, a secondary market for specific items will develop. People that like it can sink money into it; people that don't can play the aftermarket. Or not. I'll probably pick up a couple of starters, and if I like it, grab a booster box for xmas. Maybe even pass it off as a gift to my kids!
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