We're here with Trevor McGregor of JoyRide, to talk about the new changes made to the Fullmetal Alchemist Trading
Card Game. Also with us here is 'Team Hammergirl', the top eight FMA-TCG players of 'Hammergirl Anime' -
Rochester, NY's premiere anime and japanese culture store. This is in regards to the recent changes made by JoyRide to Gluttony Big Fists, Envy Copycat, Edward Elric Researcher, Library Ruins, Challenge the Sun, and Sneak Thief.
Trevor: Thanks for having me.
Sneak Thief has been said to be CRD'ed due to the card advantage it creates. The advantage: -1 attachment for an opponent, +1 attachment for the player, for one card - is no more of a card advantage than Quick Draw. Why the hate?
Trevor: That is really comparing apples to oranges and not apples to apples. You'd want to compare Sneak Thief to something like Oops or Bull's-Eye or even Aflame. Aflame is pretty close to Sneak Thief, it takes away a permanent from your opponent and gives you an advantage - all for one card. Aflame, however, is much more situational and is not long lasting. You play Aflame, get rid of attachments, get a strength bonus, be done with it. It is also situational, you must be in a battle with the character bearing the attachments you want to kill. Sneak Thief you keep the attachment to use against them plus you can do it in the Main Phase when everyone is fair game.
Lust and Psiren have the same basic ability as envy / gluttony. will they be CRD'ed? If not, why not?
Trevor: Both of those are level 3 leaders and are not able to put into any other decks, plus they are less universally useful.
What other cards are you 'looking at' in terms of possible CRD / bans?
Trevor: Since we keep printing location control counters we're obviously keeping an eye on them. Cards, like Challenge the Sun or Catch the Train, will always be watched since it actually goes around how the game works. There is an attachment in development that plays in the search phase, we'd keep an eye on that as well. Then we keep up with the popular cards, just keep an eye on them. Usually, though, we don't look to change things.
Why weaken Gluttony, Challenge the Sun, and By the Order all at once? This really seems to hurt Rebel, without the payoff. Do they get a lot of 'love' in upcoming sets?
Trevor: By Order wasn't changed per se, a rule was changed because of an omission to the original rulebook and that made By the Order too powerful. We changed that -but By the Order was only that way for a few months though. As to CTS and Gluttony, they each have their own issues separate from each other, obviously combined they are even stronger. To answer the follow up, that (character kill) isn't exactly what FMA the show is like or how the game was set up to be. Character kill is obviously an option, but it shouldn't be the easiest option, which in some cases it had become.
Errated cards seem to be moved from 'essential tier 1 cards' to tier 3, where things 'like the Mark of the O', while CRD'ed, are still great Tier 1 cards. why the decision to change Envy / Gluttony / Ed so heavily? (follow up from another player) Why not just add a discard cost, or something to give a 'card disadvantage' for the cost?
Trevor: the issue with them isn't card advantage, it is cherry picking your best cards and having 6 of them instead of 3. One of our playtesters put it the best, a little blunt, but still valid: "you don't errata card for power level if you don't want to make them weaker". I still think Gluttony is really good for rebels, I think Envy can be good in the right deck.
There's a lot of discard pile removal. was that an early shot against things that are currently CRD'ed?
Trevor: It was more a shot at what I like to call the 'in-house meta'. Someone in-house used Lust a lot, others didn't like it, bam, discard pile removal. That goes all the way back to before Premier was printed. As for the 'in-house meta' that applies to all games. It is actually funny how some cards come about - certain designers like to abuse certain things, others write counters, lots of fun.
Will we see any targetted main phase attachment destruction?
Trevor: Yes, one of the upcoming brotherhood cards does something like that, which was designed/printed without knowing we would ban Sneak Thief.
There are leaders (ALA, Greed) which are seen by the meta as 'not Tier 1' (Interviewer's note: What are you talking about, Expert Shadow is awesome). Also, in the show, many characters fall out of the spotlight (Cornello, Maes). Will we be seeing leaders to 'bump up' the less popular leaders, and will we continue to see leaders for characters that aren't in the show anymore?
Trevor: Yes and yes - I can't really say more than that. (and what are you talking about, my Greed/Toughness - 9 Deadly Sins deck is sure tier 1, well maybe 1.5 - 9 Deadly Sins, baby, 9 is the new 7)
The promos from World's (int. note: they ran out of the promos given away at World's, and gave 'rainchecks'), when are they being sent out?
Trevor: Some of them are already sent out, the others go out on Monday.
Will there be a movie set?
Trevor: I hope there is a movie set. We want a movie set, the people who own the movie want one but there are things to be worked out first. Both sides want to make it happen.
How many sets do you have planned out?
Trevor: we're working on Sacrifice and the set after that. Right now we have four sets planned for 2007 just like in 2006.
Who's on the list for new leaders? Any new Sins?
Trevor: We have two new leaders in Sac (one new and one redone), and then four on the books for the set after Sac but none of them are Sins.
Say something about football!
Trevor: Broncos 17, Steelers 9. Football is dead to me (not really). Ben (int. note - Trevor has been publically designing a card, using 'Ben Roethlisberger', a football player, as the interim name) is becoming a well-known character in FMA that is going to be new to the Rebel faction. Good stuff.
Trevor: have you guys seen Rose's Baby yet? 1 cost, 0 s, 1 w, 0 a, Battle Wits Set: Target other attacking zealot gets +2 to one attribute. This ability can be played from home. "And thank you...for you baby's cry," - Edward Elric
Thank you, Trevor. That'll wrap it up for our interview with Trevor McGregor. Thanks as always, and we look forward to more great releases from Joyride Studios!