This appears to be becoming a bi-weekly mail bag, but I’ve not given up!  I’ve got loyal fans that have questions that need answering!

It’s been a super busy couple of weeks with Spark of Hope releasing which meant a release event and cracking packs.  Cracking and sorting packs is by far my least favorite part of the hobby.  I’d be all over buying complete, sorted sets if I didn’t get my hefty contributor discounts.  But as it is, I can generally complete my play set for cheaper AND have a bunch of extras to donate to our local community, so I bite that bullet.  I’ve got my case cracking and sorting time down to about 2 hours which is nice I guess.

What am I playing?
Spark of Hope brings with it a giant plethora of new stuff to try.  I frequently get asked “what are you most excited to play with out of Spark of Hope?”  My answer is always: ALL OF IT.  My first decks out of the gate though are Reylo and a Maul2/Jabba3.

Reylo is really interesting to me.  It feels very R2P2-like in that you aren’t making many big, flashy plays, but you’re making a lot of small, incremental plays that eventually add up to the win.  But players tend to shy away from decks like that – people like flash.  I’d be surprised if it wasn’t in the running at Gencon.  I went 2-1 with this barely losing to a Vader/FOST deck.

Maul2/Jabba3 I also played this week – it was a ton of fun.  Yellow brings a couple cards that have a lot of synergy with Maul’s ability – Tireless Pursuit and No Good To Me Dead.  You take that off-target damage from the Maul Power Action and put it to even better use.  Using Nightsister Lair and free bounties can give you a little money engine and you have a good roll off average.  And Jabba’s ability to search your deck for yellow events/bounties is super solid.  The 1 die on Jabba with his +2 resource modifier is pretty meh though.  I went 2-1 with this deck as well.

Our Tuesday this week is standard again – not sure what I’m going to play yet, but mono-red villain might be in the works.

Bourbon of the Week:
Bourbon was out this week – Moscow Mules were in!  Fever-Tree Ginger Beer, Svedka, fresh lime juice in a copper mug.  It was my first time trying Fever-Tree and it was some fantastic ginger beer, even though it tends to be a bit on the pricey side.  If you’re going to have a mule, you want your ginger beer to have that ginger kick and Fever-Tree brings it.

Rules Updates:
A lot of happenings in the rules realm these weeks.  The Rules Reference got it’s Spark of Hope update – nothing too crazy here.  Uniqueness rules were updated to handle the situation of having both R2-D2 the character and the support in play – you can set aside your character or discard your support.  Setup rules were fixed for the scenario with both players having all diceless characters – randomly determine it.  Guardian was stealth changed to be an after ability trigger.  “Diceless card” and “free” were given definitions.

The bigger changes were in the holocrons – introducing the Restricted List.  I personally wanted to see how the Traitor Order 66 decks and the Droid/Military Camp decks played out in the meta before they got hit, but there was definitely a risk with not being able to address them if they were a problem with a couple of the biggest U.S. tournaments happening a month apart on the horizon (NAC and Nats).

Then a fresh hot take as I’m writing this – these updates just got posted to the “Official Rulings” thread on the home base forums:

Let me talk about the second entry first – it has now been updated that you CAN move shields, upgrades and downgrades to a character who is at their limit.  For upgrades and downgrades you’d follow the rules for discarding down.  And for shields they would get set aside until the character is at their limit.

This has some big implications with new Kylo, Dagger of Mortis and Moving Rocks.  It also gives shields a little more versatility and opens up some design space allowing for better effects.  The aforementioned Reylo deck feels real great knowing Kylo can move shields and still get his damage even if Rey is loaded already – a fairly common scenario since Kylo is usually the first target.

Also side tip – you can resolve Rey’s special on a character that already has 3 shields and still get the reroll.  You can give shields to a character over their limit and it still counts.

The first entry – about “Resolving Dice Through Cards – was intended to put to death the “die resolution window” that hadn’t been spelled out, but had been represented in many card rulings/clarifications in the past for stuff like Palpatine1, Poe1, All In, and Clandestine operation.  My goal was that dice resolved by a card effect would basically happen inside the effect at immediate speed, THEN any “after abilities” triggered by those die resolves would have to wait until after the card effect had completely resolved before entering the queue/resolving themselves.

For example, if you played All In and your opponent had Improvised Defense – you could resolve focus sides to turn dice to better sides, then resolve those dice and your opponent wouldn’t get to resolve his Improvised Defense until AFTER you had finished resolving All In.  Effectively making All In beat Improvised Defense.

The usual “Resolve Dice” action would remain unchanged, where you still would resolve dice one at a time (plus modifiers) with any after abilities resolving in-between die resolves.

This makes “Resolving Dice Through Cards” and the “Resolve Dice Action” work a little differently, but its far simpler than having to figure out how “dice resolution windows” work.  Some stuff will get stronger, like All In, some stuff might get weaker.  But we also maintain the ability to design cool “after abilities” that can still work in the “Resolve Dice Action”, kind of like Qui-Gon Jinn’s Lightsaber.

BIG BUT – the term “multiple dice” in the entry makes what I explained above a little confusing.  How does it work with something like Pulse Cannon that resolves one die at a time, three times?  Does that still use a “dice resolution window.”  I believe the answer is no and it should work like what I have above, but I’ll have to see if I can get it clarified.

OK onto the emails:

Thoughts on restricted list vs restricted groups? Feels weird that Military Camp is now unplayable with Rebel Traitor.

-Dass

Great question – some other games, like the Star Wars LCG, used restricted groups instead of one big restricted list like we went with here in Destiny.  The LCG’s deck building was very different from Destiny in general that I think using the groups was a bit more natural.  For Destiny, I think the big debate was simplicity vs complexity.  Using restricted groups can get complex – particularly if you end up with a lot of them.  Whereas the restricted list is always simple.  For now, with so few things on the list,  I think the list makes sense, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see things get broken out to groups in the future if more stuff gets added and Infinite balance gets addressed a little harder.

As another argument entirely – I was actually against implementing the restricted list at this time, before Traitor/Order 66 and Droid/Camp had a chance to even effect the meta, as I said above.  I think “NPE” is a very subjective term and I’m not really a fan of knee-jerk fixing something that isn’t already obviously broken, like LAAT was.  Part of that is just my gaming personality though – I like to see the challenges that those decks propose to the meta and how the meta would respond.  I can also see why the casual player base would hate those decks though.

Do as much as you can. Often in destiny card effects are do as much as you can, except for when u see the word then. When you see then you must complete the text before then to get the second part of the effect. now some cards don’t use the then keyword, but you still must do part a to do part b. this is where I tend to get confused in the rules. how to no when a card is do as much as you can or you do part a to then do park b. Can u help me understand this?

-Cornelius

Sure – “Then” is definitely confusing to a lot of players since colloquially it just means “do this next” in this context.  But for Destiny’s rules, “Then” has some complicated rules baggage that gives it a more complex meaning.  You have to be able to complete all effects before the “Then” in full in order to do the effect after the “Then.”  If you are not able to complete the previous effects in full, then the ability resolution stops at the “Then”.

Destiny also follows a “do as much as you can” rule for any effects that you resolve.  If an effect says “draw 3 cards”, but you only have 2 cards in deck – you draw those 2 cards.  If an effect says “Remove a die and give a character 1 shield” and there are no dice to remove, you can still give a character a shield.

If an effect says “Remove a die. Then give a character 1 shield.” And there are no dice to remove, the “Then” rule says you have to stop resolving the ability since you weren’t able to complete the first effect.  You don’t get to give a character a shield.

If I was involved with Destiny rules from the beginning I probably would have heavily argued against using the word “then” in this way, because players aren’t going to understand the rules meaning from context alone.  “Then” should have been a specialized keyword or maybe even a symbol, so players understand it as additional meaning.

Looking for a clarification about the Spark of Hope card ‘Exchange of Information.’ At first glance, I interpreted this as you only get the dollar if you reveal your hand, but on closer reading, the card says “Reveal your hand AND gain 1 resource.” It’s an ‘and’ effect, not ‘to’ or ‘then’ so would it be functionally the same as Truce without Ambush (since your opponents can take the dollar without revealing their hand as well)?

-Alec

Ok – it says “Reveal your hand and gain 1 resource.” for the first effect.  The “reveal your hand” part isn’t optional so you have to do it no matter what.  Now for the next sentence, “Each opponent may reveal their hand and gain 1 resource.”  This is optional for your opponents but the “reveal their hand and gain 1 resource” is all one effect they “may” do.  It’s all one sentence – they can’t choose to not reveal their hand and still get the resource.

Also as an aside – you do not have to have cards in your hand to “reveal your hand”.  Your hand could be empty and you can still reveal it.

When everyone was concerned about the rebel traitor order combo you expressed a lack of concern. How long ago did you know about the restricted list? Also – coke or pepsi? There is only one right answer there lol

-Vontz

I can’t answer the first question, but you can see my thoughts about the restricted list in other answers.  And Coke 100% – Pepsi is ass sugar water.

Concerning new Kylo and QuiGon’s Lightsaber, does the shield being moved, proc the effect on the Lightsaber for when a shield is removed? Or is similar to damage in that shields when moved are not considered to be removed like how damage is not dealt when moved? Thanks so much! 

-Benjamin

A shield that is “moved” is not considered to be “removed”.  A “removed” shield specifically refers to it leaving the card and returning to the supply.

This also applies to Mining Guild TIE Fighter – “losing” a resource is not the same as having your resource be “taken” like from Beckett’s special.  “Losing” a resource means returning it to the supply.

Hey boss;

Couple of items/questions for you. Some of them I’m pretty sure how they work; others I’m not 100% on. Also, if on the ones below that I say ‘explanation please’; what I’m really asking for is a description of the how/why it works as such. 

1) Explanation Please – The recent ruling on Han’s Dice – could you give a short explanation of exactly how/why this works as per the recent RRG?

2) Moves – Is the restriction of ‘a character can only have one move’ similar to such of unique upgrades (cannot overwrite a unique w/ itself)? In other words, can I overwrite Niman w/ Soresu? 

3) Niman Mastery (‘AND’ effects) – Niman Mastery reads:

–  Turn a character and upgrade die to the sides of your choice.   I am unclear on the requirement of ‘AND’ vs. ‘do as much as possible’. I get that if there are both a character and upgrade in play, I must do both. However, if there is only a character but no upgrade (or vis-versa) can I complete the action? Can I turn one if the other is not present? Because AND implies you must do both…

Thanks much.  

-Andrew


Alright – Han Solo’s Lucky Dice on Han Solo.

You activate Han Solo and roll him in – both of his dice hit blanks (!)

The trigger for Han’s Dice is “After one of attached character’s character dice rolls a blank” – they both rolled a blank so you get 2 triggers of the ability – they both go in the queue.

You resolve the first trigger – you exhaust the upgrade to reroll it. It lands on blank again (!).  That triggers Han’s Dice again which puts the ability in the queue (You have two triggers waiting to resolve now, one from the initial roll and this new one).

Before you can move on though, you have to finish resolving this trigger – the upgrade is on Han, so you ready it.

Alright next trigger – you exhaust the upgrade to reroll your other blank.  It hits resources this time.  Finish resolving the ability – the upgrade is on Han so you ready it.

Alright, last trigger that was in the queue, you exhaust the upgrade to reroll your first blank again.  It hits blank AGAIN.  New trigger, added to the queue.  Ok finish this one, upgrade is on Han so you ready it.

Ok, resolve that Han’s Dice trigger – exhaust the upgrade to reroll that pesky blank again – it hits ranged this time.  Finish resolving the ability, since the upgrade is still on Han – ready it.

Alright good to go.

Moves:

The “Limit 1 form per character” rule is not the same as the Uniqueness rule.  The uniqueness rule says you can’t play a copy of a unique card you have in play – you are not allowed to play it at all, so you don’t even get to the point where you can discard the other one to replace it.

For the “Limit 1 form per character” rule though – the only rule is you have to discard one if you have multiple on the same character.  There is not rule that prevents you from playing it, so you can overwrite Niman with Soresu or Soresu with Soresu etc.

Niman Mastery:

I get the feeling you are thinking of “and” as a Boolean operator here, where both must be true – but in this case we are using “and” more colloquially – basically just tying two nouns together of which you will apply the “turn” verb to.  It saves space, but is functionally the same as if we had put “Turn a character die to the side of your choice.  Turn an upgrade die to the side of your choice.”

And yes, if you are only able to do one or the other, you can do just one.  You have to do both if you can.  The essence of “do as much as you can.”

Basically the only things that restrict what effects you can do based on other effects completing too are the words “to” and “then”.  If it doesn’t have “to” or “then” you are usually safe to just do as much as you can, include partial resolves.

Conclusion:

A lot of really great questions in this mail bag – thanks to everyone who wrote in.  Keep the questions coming and I’ll see you again in a week (or two).