Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Collectible Card Games

Collectible Card Games (or CCG's) are a part of my RPG repertoire. If I had been more focused on games and less focused on getting laid, I probably would have started my on-again/off-again obsession with Magic: The Gathering starting at either the Beta or Unlimited set;but because I was more inclined to find a girlfriend, my real introduction into the world of CCG's began around The Dark. More information about the various sets and expansions of Magic: The Gathering can be found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Magic:_The_Gathering_sets

I say on-again/off-again because I have (at the time of this writing, at least) bought into and sold out of Magic 3 times each. I currently have a couple of per-constructed decks that I bought on a whim but I only actually play Magic on my XBox 360. Due to some of the players in my local area, I never really enjoyed playing Magic outside of my group of friends. I tried playing in a couple of tournaments, but washed-out really quickly in each attempt. The attitudes of the other people at the tournaments really left me unimpressed with maintaining a long lasting relationship.

Over the years, I have played many different CCG's such as:
  • Star Trek (Decipher)
  • Star Wars (Decipher)
  • Arcadia (White Wolf)
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Score)
  • Galactic Empires (Companion Games)
  • Illuminati: New World Order (Steve Jackson Games)
  • Jyhad/Vampire: The Eternal Struggle (White Wolf)
  • Legend of the Five Rings (Five Rings Publishing Group/Wizards of the Coast/AEG)
  • Middle-earth Collectible Card Game (Iron Crown Enterprises)
  • Netrunner (Wizards of the Coast)
  • OverPower (Fleer)
  • Pok√©mon Trading Card Game (Wizards of the Coast/Nintendo)
  • Rage (White Wolf)
  • The Lord of the Rings (Decipher)
  • The X-Files (Voyager Promotions)
  • XXXenophile (Slag-Blah Entertainment/Studio Foglio)
I have recently rekindled my obsession with both Star Wars and Star Trek. I'd also like to get back into playing Vampire: The Eternal Struggle. What draws me more than the game is the art and pop culture fondness I have for these games. They are all out-of-print now and the companies that produced them are either out of business or no longer deal in cards. I have been fortunate enough to find Star Trek and Star Wars collections for sale locally. Vampire, I have been able to acquire a few per-constructed decks.

Sometimes I wonder why I actually keep buying the cards if I don't actually play the games. There's probably a psychological condition that afflicts me, or perhaps it greed that lures me to continue to acquire these cards. I'm sure someone could have a heyday studying me.

When Star Trek first came out, I was luck (or unlucky as the case may be) to be working at a sports card shop that was looking to diversify by getting into CCG's. I remember that I bought a few boxes of Star Trek and several of Fallen Empires expansion of Magic. With an easily obsessive personality as my own (never gone stalker on a person, to keep your mind's at ease), having regular access to boxes of CCG's and an employee discount was a terrible mix.

As an avid Star Wars fan, this drew my interest instantly. It was when Star Wars was first released that I started delving into the secondary market of CCG's. Each card has a specific rarity (common, uncommon and rare) due to the number of that specific card that was actually printed. Because of this, there was value in many of these cards. I recall selling my first binder of uncommons and rares for only $100. I immediately spent that money to purchase more Star Wars cards. It wasn't until later that I realized I had sold several hundred dollars worth of cards for just $100. I know better now.

In the mid 90's, I wondered about a new game called Overpower. It was a CCG based from Marvel comic book characters, and that seemed to call my name. I was at a comic book show in Portland, Oregon and I was trying to sell some of my comics. I came across a guy who had some Overpower cards and I asked if he would be willing to make a trade. He ended-up trading me a full box of booster packs for my copy of Amazing Spider-Man #300. Those that know comic book probably felt your stomach drop upon reading that statement. To those readers who do not understand what this issue represents, it is the first appearance of Venom. When the 3rd Spider-Man movie was released, the value for this book was at an all-time high... much more than the value of that box of Overpower. The worst part about it was that none of my friends played and I never met anyone who did. I can't remember if I actually sold those cards or if they were recycled during one of my moves.

I still have some Legend of the 5 Rings, Jyhad/Vampire: The Eternal Struggle and Rage cards stashed away somewhere. I pulled characters from these games that I thought I could use as NPC's for future games. So far, I don't remember ever actually using them. We'll see.

1 comment:

  1. I think I still have boxes of old CCGs. Ill have to go through them at some point and see what I didnt get rid of.

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