Upcoming Star Wars TCG Unlimited has revealed the first details of its gameplay, along with information on plans for its release schedule and organised play.
Star Wars: Unlimited was revealed earlier this month as an upcoming trading card game from Fantasy Flight Games, the studio behind collectible dice game Star Wars: Destiny (ended in 2020), living card game Star Wars: The Card Game (ended in 2018) and the recent Star Wars Deckbuilding Game (alive, for now).
Unlike the fixed card lists found in the publisher’s living card games, Star Wars: Unlimited will be a true trading card game - in the vein of CCGs such as Magic: The Gathering - with randomised booster packs. Its first set, Spark of Rebellion, will include more than 200 cards when it releases in 2024. As in other TCGs, players will be able to build a custom deck out of their collection to adopt different play styles and strategies.
A new blog post giving the first details of Unlimited’s gameplay revealed mechanics that go beyond the traditional mould set by the likes of TCG classics MTG, Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh!
Each player only gets a single action on their turn - whether it’s playing a card, attacking the opponent or using an ability - with turns bouncing back and forth quickly. Fantasy Flight says that the one-action structure - similar to that used in Destiny - means players can quickly respond to their opponents’ moves, with the timing of card actions playing a big part in the outcome of matches.
Victory comes through destroying your opponent’s base before your own base falls. Players can choose to attack from multiple fronts via Unlimited’s division of battles into two separate arenas: ground and space.
Cards can only be played to one or the other - meaning you can’t have an X-Wing on the planet surface, or Luke Skywalker swinging his lightsaber in the vacuum of space - requiring players to ensure their deck can defend on both sides. However, some cards will have abilities that affect cards outside of their own arena.
Among the cards that can affect multiple arenas are leader cards, which sit separately to each player’s main deck of cards and act as a singular powerful presence in a deck - not unlike commanders in Magic: The Gathering’s hugely popular Commander format.
Leaders are represented by horizontal cards that depict some of Star Wars’ more famous faces - Luke and Darth Vader are the first to be revealed. Leader cards can use an effect while outside of the main battle, before later being deployed - flipping the card over to reveal new abilities - by paying their cost to join an arena as a unit card.
Fantasy Flight also provided a look ahead at its plans for Unlimited’s competitive scene, confirming plans to support multiple formats including draft, sealed and constructed play.
Organised play will be divided into casual and competitive events. Casual play will span prerelease events, regular weekly matches and other events called ‘Store Showdowns’, aimed at newcomers to the game and players looking to test out their decks in unranked matches.
Competitive events, meanwhile, will include “large-scale tournaments and massive prize pools”. Competitive events such as regional, ‘sector’ and ‘planetary’ qualifier rounds will earn players tournament points based on their performance, with the highest-ranking players earning a place in the game’s Galactic Championship.
“We at FFG have taken all of the lessons we learned from our past games - including what worked, what didn’t work, and what we never got the chance to try - and used those as a foundation to construct a new Organized Play structure for this game from the ground up,” Fantasy Flight wrote in its post. “We’ve been working on OP for Star Wars: Unlimited since the game’s inception, coordinating with the game’s designers every step of the way to make sure that it’s integrated into the game’s DNA as deeply as possible.”
Star Wars: Unlimited - Spark of Rebellion will be released next year, following on the heels of fellow Disney TCG Lorcana’s launch this summer.