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A Guide to New and Returning Players

by Stephan Allhoff, Guest Writer

13th February 2014

Are you new to the game or have you recently return after years of absence? Are you overwhelmed by the aesthetic appeal and complexity of the new cards the Continuing Committee created for us? Are you as well a little bit confused due to the array of new cards, their rules and their opportunities?  Do not be afraid! That happens to most new or returning players, and this guide shall help you to re-orientate. 


Totally new and without Orientation?

First of all you should decide what type of game you want to play. There are basically two options here. First, the block format which is recommended to totally new players, because it comes along with pre-constructed starter decks and limits the pool of cards so it is easier to get into the game.

Pre-constructed starter decks of the current Block “Deep Space 9” can be found for various affiliations:

Though, you can also take the starter decks from the last block “The Next Generation”:

It is anticipated that there will be an additional starter for each the Dominion and the Maquis in the next two upcoming sets of the DS9 block, most likely expected in spring and fall of this year.

But Deck Building is also fun!

As a returning player you may not want to play the block format, because you know the basic rules of the game and you own a good number of cards yourself. Perhaps you want to create decks with beloved cards from the Decipher-era combined with some new cards created by the Continuing Committee. This feeling is totally natural and let me say that the virtual expansions gave the old cards a new life and made them more playable and competitive.


One good example would be the bridge crew from First Contact and the U.S.S. Enterprise-E. They got a really beautiful boutique styled set named Resistance is Futile which gave players some good cards to make that faction playable.

But that is only one example out of many! The Continuing Committee strives to give every affiliation, and even more important: its sub-factions, a bunch of new cards! Did you ever think that playing a Starfleet-only deck would be really nice, but recognized that it will just not work out due to the limitations of the existing cards? Well, that said, we got some nice new cards like Finally Ready to Swim, Erika Hernandez, or even a universal personal named McDermott. In particular, the Straight and Steady expansion did a lot to make Starfleet a playable deck type.

Rules, Ban List and Deck Helps

The follow up question usually is: 'what has changed since I last played the game?' The short answer is, not so much. You still need to solve missions in order to win the game. From my point of view the biggest difference is that nowadays decks are faster with downloads and free plays, and they are more focused on one strategy and, more often than not, tend to go for a two mission win.

When you are creating your deck you should keep in mind that you need some sort of free reports of personnel and some sort of drawing mechanism to gain access to more card than just the standard one. This should be obvious since when you are able to play more than one card each turn without drawing more cards, you will run out of cards in hand pretty quickly. 

The most commonly played rule set nowadays is OTF (Open Tournament Format) developed by the Continuing Committee. You can find the current rules and ban list here and here. OTF is good place for returning players to play as it requires less knowledge of powerful strategies.

Where to Start?

Before you spend time building a deck that is totally not competitive here are some generic helpers you may want to include in your deck:

Beware of Q

Next, you should be aware of some cards and dilemmas that are likely to see in matches.

Where to play?

Now that you have created a deck with your beloved old cards and gave it some added power with the new cards. You are feeling pretty sure you can survive in an actual game, but you have no idea where to play, because all card shops stopped selling (and therefore supporting) Star Trek CCG many years ago. Well, there is an answer to your problem! Thanks to modern technology nowadays a lot of games take place with the help of Lackey, a program to play several CCG’s online. Though, we will stay focused on STCCG here.

Now Lackey is configured to work with Star Trek: CCG: First Edition. You can setup some basic information (e.g. Name, Email, and Skype account) on the “Preference” tab and then you need to load your deck.

Usually this is done by creating it either with Lackey itself (in the Deck Editor tab) or with CC’s online deck builder. If you used the online deck builder you can export a list of your deck from your deck overview page (you need to be registered on the forum to use this feature) and click on “Export to Lackey”. A download window will appear in your browser and you need to save the *.txt file to your computer. Then, you will need to copy this file to Lackey’s deck folder, which you can find in Lackey’s subfolder “plugins/startrek1e/decks/”. Once the file is there, you can select the “Deck Editor” tab in Lackey, click on “Browse” and load your exported deck. 


That was just a short overview of how to return to the game. In case you have more questions, you are always welcomed to contact the community via the forums. Also, check out the Online Tournament that starts March 1st as an option for your first tournament back in the game.


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