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How Do You Solve A Problem Like Ezri?

by Michael Moskop, Designer

5th January 2018

"The day she realizes she's more than just the sum of her parts, she's really going to be something." – Sarina Douglas

Ezri Dax

In order to explain the genesis of today’s card we have to dial back the clock. Cue a Wayne and Garth doodley-do flashback to August 18, 2013. I had just been crowned Coolest deck for the 2013 Gencon Cool tournament and I win another opportunity to design a card. (Click here if you want to read about my previous Design-A-Card prize. You might notice a theme.) After a lot of thought, I decided to dig into my files and find an old card that I had created just for fun years prior. Yea, I know it might be weird to keep a Word file full of card ideas that pop into my head, but when an idea strikes, you have to write it down. When I started digging, I actually knew what I was looking for. One of my favorite characters as well as one of my favorite episodes had neither really been fleshed out in First Edition, so I knew exactly what card to submit.

Though we only had one season of Deep Space Nine with Ezri Dax, she is one of the most interesting characters we have seen in the franchise. You might have heard the term, especially lately, of “Star Trek as a place.” The Star Trek franchise has thrived in no small part because they have taken the opportunity to fully realize so many alien species, fantastic planets, and futuristic technologies. The universe that these characters inhabit seems plausible and real because writers have taken the time to answer the logical questions that arise. Ezri Dax is the answer is one of those questions; “what happens when a Trill is joined and they are not trained or ready for it?” Throughout the last season of DS9, we see Ezri forced into accepting the many past lives thrust on her which made for excellent storytelling.

I have a character and story I love for the card, but this is where design can face issues and problems. You can have an awesome idea to make a card, but you have to fit it into the game. Under 1E rules, Ezri already has a card and is a persona of Jadzia Dax who has 6 versions across 4 affiliations and 2 eras! Making a new card for this persona would obviously take some work. I could mitigate the first point in my head because since I came back to 1E, I have never seen anyone in the Continuing Committee era use the version of Ezri from Holodeck Adventures. She has been sitting there with “Recent decks using this card: None” for as long as I have been playing the game. Getting past the Jadzia problem was the true challenge.

CCG’s are all about deck options and the existing Ezri is not the option that anyone chooses. That means it is time to make a version people will choose.  The new Ezri keeps her counselor background with OFFICER and Anthropology, knowledge of her last host with SCIENCE, and her obvious Youth. That’s all good but nothing special by itself, so let’s see the things she’s gained. First, thanks to mentioning DS9 in lore, she plays free with Here by Invitiation. Second, she has three classifications! Her detective work pays off with her shiny, new SECURITY skill. Lastly, she also fills two DS9 skill holes at once with her ability to call upon Joran Dax’s memories of Music or Treachery. In the Pale Moonlight, anyone?

So, I submitted my new version of Ezri years ago and she sat in design limbo. She was playtested and approved but just never found a place in a set. When Dan asked James and I if there were any non-Enterprise era cards that we could put into Cold Front to round out the set, my ears perked up and I say that I have a new Ezri and she’s complete with no work needed. In the set, she went. Now the question is does she make it into your deck?


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