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Subject: Fate deck was not “stacked” rss

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Charles "Chick" Lewis
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Fate deck was not “stacked”

Sat down across the kitchen table from “Fernando” again last night, (see previous ‘illusions shattered’ thread).

http://boardgamegeek.com/article/2057600#2057600

The interaction was wildly different than I expected.

When his deck hit the table I said I was worried about never seeing any German Event triggers in our previous game, and asked if I could check to see if maybe GMT had sent him a defective German deck. (Note the face-saving option offered)

He looked slightly sheepish for a second, then said, “Oh, I replaced those cards.”

I said “You’re saying you stacked your deck against me, right ?”

Fernando: “No, it isn’t ‘stacked’, I TUNED my decks. Had to buy another game to do it.”

I sat, semi-stunned, biting my tongue while trying to formulate an expletive-free response.

He proceeded into a rambling tale of how he had analyzed the cards and decided which ones were the most effective, then included two each of the 36 best cards in his deck. His tactical choice was closing and eliminating enemy units in melee, so he retained all the Advance, Move, and Ambush cards, then filled the deck out with some Recovers and the Fire cards which had the highest die numbers on them. No fool would want to include the Confusion or Rout cards in a deck. The Artillery cards he considered only corner-case-useful, so they came out as well.

While learning how he reinserted the Time trigger cards when he planned to play defense, I interrupted to state that Fate decks were meant to be FIXED decks.

Fernando said that was silly, declaring that part of the challenge of ANY card game is building an optimum deck. (Yah, he’s a big ‘Collectable Card Game’ player) Fernando said the only restriction was that a fate deck had to have 72 cards and challenged me to show him where in the rules it forbad ‘tuning’ his deck.

I dove for my rulebook and discovered - - - well, - - - he is right, it isn’t explicitly forbidden.

1. "The Fate Cards – There are three sets of Fate cards included with this game - - . A player’s 72-card Fate Deck is the Heart and soul of the game. Once the game begins, no action may be taken - - without a fate card in hand allowing it.”

I persisted, claiming the rulebook definitely IMPLIES that Fate decks are fixed. He dove for his rulebook and immediately referred me to the adjacent red-boxed note:

” Important: In Combat Commander - - a rule means exactly what it says - - Do NOT infer or imagine more to a rule than is stated in it. - - “

At that point I was ready to cut my losses and leave, but, maybe I could salvage the evening - - I asked if he would be willing to play, but with both of us using my unmodified Fate decks. Fernando said he had played CC twice with the starter decks, and it wasn’t much fun, too frustrating. He found that often he couldn’t do what he wanted to do.

I suggested that this was exactly the point of the game. He didn’t answer, but looked at me as he would at a particularly dim-witted specimen.

My erstwhile opponent then offered to loan me his ‘TUNED’ Russian Defensive Deck for a game. This idea I found disturbingly attractive. I considered it for a long moment (only as a ‘variant’, of course). Finally passed my morale check, and turned away from the Dark Side.

Fernando then compelled me to admire his ‘All Heavy Artillery All the Time’ deck for the old WWII CCG “The Last Crusade” which he said had never been beaten. I allowed him to demonstrate some cool first-person shooter WWII X-box game, watching him play just long enough to be polite, before returning home.

So, what did I learn from “Fernando”? That it takes all kinds. The upside to this story is that GMT got to sell two copies of CCE to the guy.

Chick
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John McLintock
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That's one of the funniest gaming stories I've read in a while. Who'd've expected that outcome to the situation, eh? I expect I'd've suffered jaw-dropping bogglement myself. I can understand how you'd be pissed at losing a potential CC opponent, but you can't really take it personally, can you?
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"Were Spencer Tracy still around (God rest his soul) he'd have given that montebank "Fernando" a right, proper thrashing."

(Have to say it in your best Katherine Hepburn voice.)
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J Mathews
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Actually, the game includes a card manifest for each deck that states what cards make up the Fate Deck. If you alter that, it no longer fits within the defined decks. Since there is nothing explictly or implicitly stating that you can alter the Fate Decks, you have to go with what the manifests say as that's the definition of each country's Fate Deck.

Btw, why didn't he just buy extra card decks instead of the whole game? Wierd.

Edit 1: Spelling

Edit 2: Isn't there somewhere in the rules referring to the 72 cards as being 2 complete dice combinations? If so, his deck must conform to that convention as well. If not, I'm sure that you can find Chad saying that that is the purpose behind the number of cards in the deck.
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Re-reading this story, I couldn't help but remember this famous exchange from The Wrath of Khan.

(I know. I'm damned.)

McCoy: Lieutenant, you are looking at the only Starfleet cadet who ever beat the no-win scenario.

Saavik: How?

Kirk: I reprogrammed the simulation so it was possible to rescue the ship.

Saavik: What?

David Marcus: He cheated.

Kirk: I changed the conditions of the test. I got a commendation for original thinking. I don't like to lose.
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Bryan Collars
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Combat Commander:Europe-$79.00
2nd Combat Commander: Europe-$79.00
Unbelievable Combat Commander:Europe Story to Tell Forever-Priceless

I love this. It will certainly be recounted by me at my next Game Meeting.
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Jean-Luc Simard
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This guy reminds me of some of the players I had when I was running CCG tournaments, always looking for the unwritten edge.

Why put Command Confusions in a deck if you could simply remove them by buying more decks?

BTW, here's my ultimate any-nations Defense deck of Doom:

72x Fire Order with Dice Roll '12'

On every turn fire as much as you can. Each shot will give you a great FP, plus a Time event! Sure, you'll never make your Sudden Death roll, but the game should be over after 12 Orders (and less if your opponent is kind enough to shoot back at you).

What great fun!
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Aaron Silverman
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Re: Fate deck was not “stacked”
Chick,

I'm really sorry you went through that, but on the bright side, this is one of the best funny gaming stories I've ever read in my 30+ years of gaming. Seriously, you've provided a lot of entertainment for a lot of people, and you'll be telling this one a lot longer than you'd be remembering just another scenario that got played.

Thank you, sir!
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Antigonus Monophthalmus
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There's 2 for one of the most amazing stories I've ever heard.
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David desJardins
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EventHorizon wrote:
Actually, the game includes a card manifest for each deck that states what cards make up the Fate Deck.
There's no card list in CC:E.
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Isn't there a card with each Fate Deck that tells you what its composition is? I thought there was...
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David desJardins
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BradyLS wrote:
Isn't there a card with each Fate Deck that tells you what its composition is? I thought there was...
Oh, true enough. I was thinking of the detailed card manifests that appear in CC:M. But you're right, there are summary cards that don't give all of those details but do list the number of Orders and Actions.
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M King
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This is a great story, but rather than thinking Fernando is a scoundrel, I find it fascinating that he came to the game with a CCG mindset and then approached the game with that mindset. From within the world of CCG's what he did made perfect sense. Makes me wonder what other gaming sub-world's have assumptions that would be hideously wrong applied to another game world.

I also wondered what would happen playing two "tuned" decks against each other. I don't think I could have resisted just trying once to see what it would have been like.
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Alan Kaiser
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WOW, just WOW! angry

I'm completely amazed
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Alan Kaiser
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chicklewis wrote:

Fernando then compelled me to admire his ‘All Heavy Artillery All the Time’ deck for the old WWII CCG “The Last Crusade” which he said had never been beaten. I allowed him to demonstrate some cool first-person shooter WWII X-box game, watching him play just long enough to be polite, before returning home.
The Last Crusade! I have that and if he had experience with that game I can certainly see why he did what he did. All heavy artillary . . . hmmmmm. Interesting.
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Chad Jensen
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Sorry for your wasted afternoon, Chick. Glad you passed your personal morale check. I can just imagine this guy buying several copies of some card-driven wargame like Paths of Glory and seeding his deck with nothing but 5-Ops cards. shake

On the bright side you've brought some welcome humor to these forums, and did so with a nice bit of levity. Thanks for reporting back to us! laugh
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Gregory Wong
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Jaels wrote:

Why put Command Confusions in a deck if you could simply remove them by buying more decks?
That's precisely why. To make you buy more decks... at least that's how it works in the CCG world. They're called "commons", and that's how they make money.

This was a very entertaining thread. Made me laugh out loud.

Hey Chad. Is there a Capt. Fernando in a CC module someplace?
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Jean-Luc Simard
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saxophone wrote:
Jaels wrote:

Why put Command Confusions in a deck if you could simply remove them by buying more decks?
That's precisely why. To make you buy more decks... at least that's how it works in the CCG world. They're called "commons", and that's how they make money.
Oh don't worry, I know about that part. I've had the CCG fever and too much disposable income for a long time (but thankfully I'm cured of the first part now).

Very entertaining thread indeed.
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...Thing is, collectible card games are advertised that way and don't come with deck manifests for each pack you buy. (Or do they???)

Anyway, nothing about CC:E/M says its' collectible.

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Timothy Burke
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NinetySixer wrote:
Combat Commander:Europe-$79.00
2nd Combat Commander: Europe-$79.00
Unbelievable Combat Commander:Europe Story to Tell Forever-Priceless
If he was used to building MTG decks $160.00 is sort of a bargain.
Great story!
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Timothy Burke
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saxophone wrote:

This was a very entertaining thread. Made me laugh out loud.

Hey Chad. Is there a Capt. Fernando in a CC module someplace?
Any crazy assed leader not following my tactical suggestions will henceforth be labeled a "Capt. Fernando"
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Jesse Miller
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It is *absurd* how much I enjoyed this story.
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Chad Winter
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"Fernando" must have known he was doing something wrong, right? Else why wouldn't he have been up front with you about his deck during the first game?

What fun is it to beat somebody when you're cheating? That sounds like dullsville to me.
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Ronster Zero
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First, thanks for posting the follow up to your original post. I was eagerly awaiting the answer the next time you meet Fernando.

Although I was hoping you would have passed your "detect cheater and go berserk" check and unleashed a beat down, I like the class in which you handled it.

Also, if he thinks deck building in a war game is not cheating...I guess brining loaded dice just helps your boys shoot straighter....

Some people.

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Andrew Young
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Did he expect a booster pack in Combat Commander: Paratroopers??

Yikes.
yuk

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