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Gaming Havens – Decipher Special Report #2

September 22, 2001 at 3:25 pm by Strider  - 

The all day event at Decipher continues with Sandy Wible, Monica Jones, and Tom Lischke, who stuck around beyond the call of duty.

Unfortunately Monica Jones had computer trouble, by Kyle from Decipher held contact with her on the phone and did his best to entertain the masses with trivia, and short answers for the avid fan’s questions.

So what did we learn? Well, to start a fan asked the question, “Are there any Tolkien games being made by EA or Sierra?” and our very own Ostadan came to our aid, putting this complicated question into an understandable perspective.

EA has the license for LotR games based on the _movies_. Sierra (actually Vivendi/Universal) has the license for games based on the _books_. Several games are planned — I know that Vivendi will have a “Fellowship” game for the X-Box planned for early next year, and have revived the online roleplay project. I do not know what EA’s plans are.

Tolkien sold the movie/media rights (and derived rights) years ago, and they are held by Tolkien Enterprises. The book copyrights and derived copyrights are held by the Estate, and of course the publishers.

And of course, it’s more awesomely complicated, since the rights for the Silmarillion and other posthumous works are separate. It took about half a page of tiny print in the rulebook for the Iron Crown CCG to explain the whole mess.

Sandy Wible (Production) then came on the scene:

For those who don’t know, I handle a lot of the production details, as well as helping the Art and TCG people with all kinds of odds and ends.

Lately, I’ve been working hard getting the press sheets ready to go to the printer, and also finalizing the foil templates for the cards.

She was asked:

What does most of the art consist of. Still, publicity shots?

We have always desired to use images that are _not_ publicity shots in our games. You see the publicity shots all over the place… which is great for their purpose, but we like to show you something unique and different.

Also, film images tend to have more “real life” in them. You know what I mean… you can look at a publicity shot and tell right away that it was staged.

In some of our other games, we have resorted to using stills and other things only where the film images turned out blurry or too far away or something.

We have gone to great trouble and expense to wheedle (and yes we wheedled big time) images from the film that NOBODY else has access to. When you get your cards, you’re going to see images from the film that aren’t available anywhere else!!!

What’s in a deluxe starter set?

We plan to have the special precon deck made just for the Deluxe Starters (based on hobbits and Ringwraiths), glass damage markers, glass Fellowship tokens, a booster pack, a collector’s card list, and more. Now, some of this might be eliminated (such as the card list) since we’re still finalizing the contents, but this is the basic idea.

Tom Lischke (Design) stuck around to answer more questions:

Adventure Path: a line of up to nine sites. When the game starts, only a site 1 is in play (a Hobbiton or Bree site, most likely). As fellowships move, sites are added to the path as necessary until at the end, there will be nine (site 9s are stuff like Amon Hen, Falls of Rauros, etc.). Rivendell is at 3, Lorien is at 6.

Adventure Deck: each player has an Adventure Deck with nine sites in it (one of each number).

The player who goes first puts out their site 1, and both players put their fellowship marker on it. When a fellowship moves, if the site they are moving to hasn’t been revealed yet, one of their opponents plays that site from their adventure deck (for instance, if the furthest advanced fellowship was at site 5, and choose to move, one of their opponents would play their copy of site 6).

What will Decipher be using for advertisement and giveaways? Monica Jones (Vice President of Marketing) gives us a peak:

We’ll be producing posters, static window cling, etc. for retailers and posters for giveaway to guys like you. Have you seen any of the oversized LOTR TCG cards? I think they’re pretty cool.

Well folks, this will be going on all day, so if you have any questions, or just want to hang around and answer the ongoing trivia in hopes if winning prizes, go Here and tell ‘em Berendir sent yah.

Posted in Old Special Reports on September 22, 2001 by

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