Tuesday, October 16, 2012

All Together Now, Vol. 2 - A Little Addition To The Star Trek CCG Is "Second Anthology!"

The Good: Intriguing unique cards, Not a bad value for the boxed set
The Bad: Everything else is available elsewhere
The Basics: Six unique cards highlight the "Second Anthology" boxed set which served to unload extra inventory from the second trio of Star Trek CCG releases!

Based on the success of the "First Anthology" product (reviewed here!), when Decipher had released a few more sets, it came out with "Second Anthology," an exclusive set of six cards boxed up all special in a decorative box designed to appeal to both collectors and players. This decorative box that holds over five hundred gaming card singles is designed to sell a compact playing experience to the casual fans of the game and give collectors a chance to enhance their collections. With two "Starter Deck II" Starter Decks (reviewed here!) and two packs each of boosters from "First Contact" (reviewed here!), "Deep Space Nine" (reviewed here!) and "The Dominion" (reviewed here!) this is a monument to the Star Trek CCG experience thus far.

Inside every box of "Second Anthology" cards, is a cellophane pack of six cards. This is what is unique about this set and this is the only reason anyone would buy them. These six cards are the "Second Anthology" preview cards.

But as far as preview cards went, the "Second Anthology" set is remarkably well conceived. All six cards are of characters and popular ones at that, piquing the interest of both fans and collectors. The "Second Anthology" cards in the preview set are alternate affiliations and personas of popular characters or updates that give characters from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine that became more important more juice for players! The characters include: Vedek Dax (a Bajoran Affiliation Jadzia Dax!), Legate Damar, Bashir Founder (an insidious Dominion Affiliation Personnel card), Luther Sloan (who creates a Section 31 sub-affiliation), Jodmos (the Klingon Affiliation Sisko from when he went undercover in the fifth season premiere!) and Koval, who may become an asset to any Romulan deck given his political power!

These characters may be used to enhance virtually any deck, though it is worth noting that some of them require special attention. The Bashir Founder must be played using the infiltrator rules established in "The Dominion" CCG set and more advanced players who play with a strict interpretation of the Unique card rule will prevent Jodmos from being played if there is another Sisko on the table. None of these six cards resulted in any changes to the rules or playability, though all of these personnel were remarkably hot to collectors and fans.

Indeed, Decipher should get some kudos for picking a great blend of intriguing characters from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, a series that would begin to truly take off in game play, but had been underused for much of Decipher's gaming run.

Despite the enduring popularity of the characters depicted on the six cards, the expense for the boxed set now makes it cost prohibitive to purchase it for the exclusives. Despite the fact that "Second Anthology" boxes are more readily available and less expensive than "First Anthology," the extra packs and starter decks all contain product most players and collectors will already have. While the "Starter Deck IIs" might be a dud, though, packs of the other three sets thrown into this package tend to be getting harder to find, so collectors and players may not object to the repack.

Also, unlike the "First Anthology," which had preview cards, "Second Anthology" had unique premiums; these cards are never reprinted and they are ONLY available in the "Second Anthology" set! The nice thing about this is that the "Second Anthology" set appeals to players who are playing any number of affiliations! With one decent card from each of the major "Deep Space Nine" friendly affiliations, these six cards are bound to help the majority of players out even if they play with only one of the six cards!

As a side note, it is incredibly difficult to find Star Trek cards that have the likeness of Casey Biggs as Damar, so the Legate Damar card here is a fantastic option for those looking for something to get Biggs to sign at conventions! Casey Biggs is very popular on the convention circuit, so finding anything for him to sign can be a bear. This set makes it easy!

Ultimately, though, this is just six cards and they are more fun and collector/fan favorites as opposed to cards that truly change the way the Star Trek CCG is played. The images are found almost nowhere else, so they look good, making them a consistently sought-after product. Too bad they didn't do more! But if they had, it wouldn't be a little release!

This set was snuck into the marketplace after "Blaze Of Glory," (reviewed here!) but before "Rules Of Acquisition" (reviewed here!).

The six unique cards cull images from the following episodes:
Dax is from "The Siege"
The Bashir Founder is from "In Purgatory's Shadow"
Jodmos is from "Apocalypse Rising"
Koval is from “Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges
Legate Damar and Sloan appear in the seventh season of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

This is a set of cards I proudly sell in my online store; check out my current inventory of these cards here!


For other gaming card reviews, please visit my Gaming Card Review Index Page!

© 2012, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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