by Phil Fleischmann
Or is it simply time to have this discussion again? Well, we haven't in a while, so why not?Moons
were never all that great - but they probably could be made to work well enough with a little tweaking. The problem is, having a moon encounter has a very high opportunity cost and relatively low reward if you win. If there are to be moons with bad effects, then you're not only giving up the chance to gain a foreign colony and get 20% closer to victory, but you're also risking significant harm to yourself.Lucre
was never particularly good at all, and it would take quite a bit of work to make it worth adding to the game. FFG has specifically said they won't be adding lucre to the game. Of course, there's no reason why they can't change their minds if they want. And they have taken a few of the old Lucre powers and released them in a de-lucre-ized form: Ethic, Butler, Extortionist. No, not the Pirate - the new Pirate is not a de-lucre-ized version of the old Pirate, it is a completely new alien.
There are three main underlying problems with Lucre, all of which need to be solved if FFG is going to even consider publishing a lucre expansion:
1) Probably the biggest problem - it adds more complication to the game without adding that much more fun.
2) The Lucre Equalization Problem - players can use lucre to compensate for the things their power doesn't do. The obvious example would be if Lucre can be used to buy cards or ships from the warp, then Zombie and Mutant lose their respective uniqueness. Zombie spends his lucre on cards and Mutant spends his on ships - and now to completely different aliens now play almost exactly the same. If this problem can be solved, it might be a big step toward solving the first problem.
3) The specific powers that deal with lucre have to be decent powers, which has always been a problem. Pretty much all of the original Eon lucre powers weren't good at all. And while the Mayfair version greatly improves some of them, they also introduced a few new ones which were bad (Gnome, Entrepreneur).Comets and the Reverse Cone
have been incorporated into the Hazards, And very nicely done! I wouldn't mind seeing a few new Hazards or Special Destiny cards in a future expansion. I remember the original Hazards variant as it was posted on the internet somewhere (Jack Reda's Warp?) in the early '90s, and it was incredibly stupid. FFG's version is quite good.Technology
was something that was promised in a Mayfair expansion, but never happened. Now that it's here in FFG, it's not too bad, but not great, IMO. I wouldn't mind seeing some new Tech cards in a future expansion - and possibly even some new Tech-related rules variants, so they come into play more often. As with Moons, giving up an encounter to gain a Tech is a very high opportunity cost for what might not be that much gain - but at least none of the Techs hurt you.Aliens
These are the previously published aliens by Eon and Mayfair that have not yet been published by FFG:
Anomaly - Mayfair. bad, but possibly fixable
(Assassin) - Eon - renamed to Shadow
Assessor - Eon, made slightly better, but Lucre-based, by Mayfair
Aura - Eon
Berserker - Mayfair
Boomerang - Eon (essentially replaced by Invader)
Busybody - Mayfair
Connoisseur - Mayfair, too powerful, but fixable
Crystal - Eon (the FFG Crystal is a completely different alien)
Delegator - Eon, possibly replaced by the Usurper?
Demon - Eon
Dragon - Eon - a Lucre power so closely tied to lucre that it may be impossible to de-lucre-ize it.
Entrepreneur - Mayfair, a very weak Lucre power, fixable with lucre, but de-lucre-izing it might just turn it into Merchant or something like that.
Force - Eon, poorly-defined Lucre power
Ghost - Mayfair, essentially replaced by Wormhole
Gnome - Mayfair, weak lucre power, possibly not un-lucre-izable.
Grief - Mayfair, replaced by Reborn
Hurtz - Eon, Lucre power
Insect - Eon, meta-power, might cause a few rules problems, but maybe those could be ironed out.
Lloyd - Eon, Lucre power, if de-lucre-ized, might be too similar to Healer.
Magnet - Eon
Negator - Eon
Obverse - Mayfair
Pavlov - Mayfair
Pirate - Eon, Lucre power, perhaps too inextricably linked to lucre.
Prolong - Mayfair
Queue - Mayfair
Serpent - Mayfair
Silencer - Eon, possibly the most annoying power ever.
Subversive - Mayfair
(Terrorist) - Eon - Renamed to Saboteur
Vampire - Mayfair
Witch - Eon, poorly-defined
Wrack - Eon
Wraith - Mayfair, similar to Sloth