|Living Card Games | Published 31 December 2009|
Since its introduction almost two years ago, the LCG™ (Living Card Game™) format has come to be immensely successful for FFG. The core sets for each of our three LCGs are in their second printing, and sales continue their growth rate in both domestic and international markets. In fact, the first printing of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game sold out in Spain within just a few short weeks of its release! Fans around the world have enjoyed augmenting their LCG core sets with our fixed 40-card monthly packs, and have experienced the strategy of deck building without the financial strain of random card packs.
So why a change?
We have consistently been receiving feedback that the LCG™ model could go from a solid success to a huge success with only one adjustment. With the greater-than-expected sales of our LCG™ games, FFG has been able to muster the resources to make this adjustment happen.
Today, we’re proud to announce a coming improvement in our monthly LCG™ expansion packs, and we think you’ll love it.
Each of our current monthly expansion packs (for all three of our LCGs) consist of 10 unique cards in single copy, and a second set of 10 unique cards in triplicate copies (for a total of 40 cards), with each expansion pack retailing for $9.95 U.S.
For players desiring maximum flexibility in deck construction, this has meant purchasing three monthly packs (for close to a $30 total retail price) and an undesirable overage of 60 cards (having nine copies, instead of three, of half the cards.) Though still an attractive solution when compared to Collectible Card Games, the LCG™ collation was not ideal for players. Not only that, but FFG had consistently feedback that (although LCG™ sales were successful) the monthly 40-card pack collation caused confusion and resistance with many otherwise-interested players.
So, in the months ahead FFG will be changing the collation of our monthly packs, adopting an approach that both existing and potential LCG customers have been requesting. Once fully implemented across all of our LCG’s™, your monthly packs will include 60 cards, consisting of 20 unique cards in triplicate copy, and will retail for only $14.95!
This means with one convenient purchase, you’ll be able to acquire three copies of each new card... at less than half the current cost.
When will this change take place?
That depends on which LCG™ you play. Over the next several months, we’ll be “phasing in” this improved model.
The upcoming cycle Defenders of the North, which is scheduled to start shipping in January ’10, will still be released in the current (40-cards per Chapter Pack) format, but subsequent cycles will incorporate the new format described above.
Players that are currently delving into the horrific and wonderful Dreamlands Asylum Pack cycle will soon have their hands on Search for the Silver Key. The final Asylum pack in that cycle, Journey to Unknown Kadath, will follow soon thereafter. The unveiling of the next gripping Call of Cthulhu cycle is right around the corner, and will incorporate the new format.
Once all six of the Battle Packs in The Corruption Cycle have been released, the next cycle of Battle Packs will be in the new collation format announced today.
. . .
We think you’ll agree that the forthcoming improvement to LCGs™ is one that is wonderful for its many fans, offering more convenience at a much lower cost. As always, we thank you for your support!
If you have any questions on any of the above, you may be able to find some answers below.
Why can’t you change the upcoming packs to the new format immediately?
The production cycle for LCG™ packs is quite long, and FFG produces all six packs of a cycle at the same time (so that we can ship them on a consistent monthly basis.) This means that cycles that have already completed production (such as the A Game of Thrones: Defenders of the North Cycle) will still contain the 40-card format.
What about the larger special expansion releases such as Secrets of Arkham?
While Secrets of Arkham will still contain two copies of every included card, we’re looking to move most of our special expansion to a three copies of each card/set, if the scope of the expansion allows it.
What about the LCG™ core sets?
We believe that variety of cards in the core sets, for a varied game experience, is much more important than providing triplicate copies of all cards. The LCG™ core sets will therefore continue to be sold in their current format. Even the most enthusiastic players, who purchase multiple copies of the core set, will still find themselves spending less on this than the cost of a single CCG booster display.
Why didn’t you release the monthly packs this way in the first place?
For several reasons. At the time we launched the LCG™ format, it was important to FFG to keep the monthly decks below the $10 price point, which placed restrictions on the contents. Then we had to guess not only whether the format would be popular enough to support a long-term business, but whether the typical customer would want to purchase one or three decks (making the 40-card format a reasonable middle ground that also met our costing restrictions). As we already had successfully published several experimental Asylum Packs in the 40-card format for the Call of Cthulhu CCG, it seemed prudent to launch the LCG™ concept with this collation.
So why is charging half the amount of money for three copies of each card now possible when it wasn’t upon launch?
There are four primary reasons.
First, the LCG™ format has been so much more successful than we had planned. This higher volume has allowed FFG to recoup our fixed investment faster (design, development, testing, artwork, etc), in turn providing FFG with the opportunity to pass part of that upside along to our LCG™ customers.
Secondly, we believe that this new collation format will allow the LCG™ concept to really expand its already impressive growth, attracting even more new players, thus furthering the virtuous cycle that enabled this positive change in the first place.
Thirdly, the new format allows FFG to print 60 fewer cards and two fewer pieces of packaging than the equivalent three 40-card packs. Not only can we pass some of these savings along to players, but this approach is better for the environment.
Lastly, FFG is willing to make this investment because we believe the LCG™ format to be, along with board games and roleplaying games, one of the main pillars of our games business. You may note that we have recently made several important decisions towards this same effect. For example, FFG announced last week the cancellation of our two remaining Collectible Card Games, in part to allow us to focus on LCGs™.
Wait a second.
I only have the WARHAMMER INVASION CARDGAME.
With this change I'll pay for cards that won't be used. Is that it?
Great news to start next year :D I hope Polish distributors will soon get second print of A Game of Thrones LCG Core Set.
GREAT news!!! Now the LCG format is pretty much perfect compared to the competition.
I might try a LCG now. I wouldn't prior to this. Thanks!
Happy New Year to you FFG. I think this is great news, and i'm very happy to see that a format for card games DOES in fact exist.
Now, i have a New Year request: Could you please continue UFS as an lcg? The mechanics of this card game are second to none, and the ShadoWar set developed by Steve Horvath and James Hata has depth and intrigue written all over it.
I would hate to see a game as great as UFS go the way of the Dodo, when it could make a more than viable addition to your roster as an lcg; you are correct that the ccg model has failed.
I certainly hope that you will give my sentiment careful consideration, as there exists a staple of die-hard UFS'ers who want to see this game live on, pun fully intended.
Fantastic news! This is what these games needed from the start. Thank you FFG.
You know, this is actually great news. I've been wanting the Call of Cthulhu LCG for several months but never got it because of the perception that the cost would still be prohibitive. With this implemented, I think I'll go buy it for sure now. Yay!
great news. this actually means I'll be able to play more LCGs. best format for card games, beats the traditionnal ccg model by far (except maybe for drafting, but so few ccgs are good at that...), and beats Decipher's attempt at something similar with fight klub. great news to start a new year in gaming!
I definately think a Twilight Imperium LCG would be AMAZING . . . . but I'm just as happy about how awesome this news is.
The 40K LCG would be good fun as well.
This is such a good decision. Well done, FFG!
And I hope the "of co..." may lead to a Twilight Imperium LCG. Make good use of your own core intellectual property, which is a wonderful universe to play in and way to underutilized in my opinion.
Amen! The LCG model is sheer genius (I wish UDE/VS had thought of it) and this change is just another reason why FFG has earned my players' respect. Keep up the great work guys!
Now, how long do we have to wait for a Superhero/Marvel/DC styled game!
I echo Endbringer....this is why you are my favorite gaming company, and why you will always own stock in my wallet.