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Star Wars Unlimited Pre-Release Events: Exclusive Trading Cards and Tournaments in Germany

The pre-release week for Star Wars Unlimited has begun – events have been and are taking place in game stores all over Germany where fans can secure the first trading cards, including two new promos and accessories from Gamegenic, and then play the trading card game in informal tournaments to try out.

Fantasy Flight Games and Asmodee have taken players around the world on a pretty wild ride in recent months: it wasn’t until May of last year that it was even announced that they were working on a Star Wars trading card game.

Star Wars Unlimited: „Mega!“

Less than a year later, fans can already get started. In the weeks and months prior, Fantasy Flight Games had released bits and pieces of information to drum up interest. This is obvious, as shown by the example of the pre-release event in the Asmodee flagship store “White Rabbit” in Essen – directly opposite the university. A total of 80 fans took part in the tournament, which took place in two blocks, and many more stopped by the store to find out more or to buy pre-release packages and accessories.

Sascha Krey, who, along with Mathias Scholten, is the owner of the board game store that runs an outpost in Aachen, draws a short and positive conclusion: “It was mega.” Everyone had a lot of fun, the atmosphere was great, now we’re looking forward to the coming weeks and want to see, among other things, how the “Weekly Plays” (weekly game meetings for Star Wars Unlimited) are going in the White Rabbit and make any adjustments if necessary of the organization, for example optimizing the number of places. For the two store operators and experienced TCG event organizers, the early launch of Star Wars Unlimited was particularly exciting because it is a completely new game. In any case, Sascha Krey sees great potential in the Fantasy Flight Games new trading card game community. Even if everything didn’t go smoothly at the start. Asmodee still has to adapt the tournament software; a lot of it had to be entered manually at the start. Things still went smoothly in the Essen game store, and the difficult technical conditions didn’t dampen the fun.

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Contrary to initial predictions, Star Wars Unlimited doesn’t just seem to appeal to core trading card players – and you don’t have to be a Star Wars fan first and foremost. A survey among the players on site in Essen showed that they ended up playing this trading card game for various reasons. Yes, many have a passion for George Lucas’ sci-fantasy epic and were excited when the game was announced.

Experienced fans in particular had to overcome a long dry spell because, in contrast to other popular franchises such as Pokémon or Yu-Gi-Oh, there hasn’t been a real trading card game in Star Wars for a long time. Most recently, a trading card game from Decipher was available, the Star Wars Collectible Card Game – but it was too complex even for a tracing card game to be able to establish it sustainably on the mass market. The title ended around the millennium. The joy is now all the greater to be able to play, collect and trade cards from the Star Wars universe again.

Other players first became aware of Star Wars Unlimited at the gaming fair in Essen last October and got stuck; Still others wanted something new in the TCG genre, because the popular titles have been running for decades and are being further developed, but often offer little that really offers a breath of fresh air. And then there were those who appreciated the community spirit and wanted to be there from the start.

Not everyone has ever played a trading card game before, so it was sometimes difficult to put together a reasonably powerful deck in a seal format. In the end, it was all about fun – the pre-release tournaments served to bring fans together so they could enjoy a common hobby. The plan obviously worked: the mood was good. Some influencers mingled with the fans, such as “Brett-Man” Simon or the “Board Game Geeks”.

Those game fans who pulled one of the showcase cards from a booster had reason to be particularly happy. These special leader variants are quite rare with a probability of around one copy per 288 boosters – and that was also the case at the event in Essen: There was showcase cheering, but only a few times.

Jan-Eric, among others, had fun on Saturday evening. For the 28-year-old from Essen, Star Wars Unlimited is his second trading card game; he had previously played Flesh and Blood. Board games also regularly end up on the table. He came to the hobby through Corona and ultimately through the White Rabbit game store, which provided rare shared moments during the pandemic and offered on-site game meetings.

In Essen, Star Wars Unlimited was played at a total of 19 tables in the “White Rabbit” game store – in two blocks. Photo: Volkmann

“Before Corona,” the Essen native mainly played computer games, but today it can be analogue, especially cooperative – or Star Wars: Jan-Eric was fond of “Legion,” so he took part in the meetings at the White Rabbit others to play the tabletop miniatures game. He would initially like to tackle Star Wars Unlimited “just for fun,” perhaps taking part in smaller tournaments – “as it fits with work,” says the 28-year-old. Between 30 and 100 euros per month go from his wallet to board games over the counter. In the end, he couldn’t resist the pre-release of Star Wars Unlimited: “The joy was just too great,” says Jan-Eric. He competed against Gamegenic man Tobias Franken at the informal tournament in Essen, was able to keep up, but at least couldn’t win this duel. Was it still fun? “Absolutely!” says the Essen native happily.

Something similar was often heard on Saturday: Wins and defeats hardly played a role for most SWU fans, it was all about trying things out, meeting nice people, Star Wars – and ultimately, for some, getting started in a new hobby that they love could possibly accompany you for many years to come. Whether and how well this works depends largely on Fantasy Flight Games and Asmodee and how they deal with the trading card game, the community and the new content. In any case, the foundation has been laid.

The pre-release week now runs until March 7th, and the next day Star Wars Unlimited officially celebrates its launch in retail stores – both stationary and online. From mid-March the first “Weekly plays”, the weekly game meetings at SWU on site, will begin.

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Last updated on March 3, 2024 / Affiliate links / Images from the Amazon Product Advertising API. Images from Amazon PA API.

2024-03-03 13:18:27
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