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5 All Our Yesterdays All-Star Cards Worthy of Your Attention

by Brian Sykes, Meta Analyst

31st August 2020

Now that All Our Yesterdays is here, and all of the cards are public, I wanted to do a top 5 countdown, because while some of the cards have been controversial, there are some real gems as well that deserve to get called out in a positive way. There's also some dark horse cards that have the potential to be "sneaky good" that I wanted to call attention to as well, and I'll be doing that in a future article.

It's axiomatic that any list like this is going to be subjective, and I make no pretense otherwise. This is my opinion and does not necessarily represent the views of the CC, the AoY design team, or other 2e staff. To the contrary, when making this list, I put on my player hat and asked myself "Which cards from this set do you think you'll play yourself, and which cards do you think you'll need to prepare for?"

So with the disclaimer out of the way, and without further ado, here are my top 5 All Our Yesterdays cards!

NUMBER 5: Leodis
Sometimes the simplest cards are the best cards, and this guy is a textbook case of that. 4 skills, 2 of which - Anthropology and Honor - were previously unavailable on Remans, a nice beefy strength of 8, and a coveted  [Pa]  icon (more on that in a minute), all for 2 counters? I'll take that every day of the week and twice on Sunday!  And his other two skills - Geology and Security - pair quite nicely with The Viceroy to cover down on Supervise Dilithium Mine - just add meatshields (of which the Remans have plenty to choose from) and you're well on your way. There's options here, a lot of them, and when you can bring a lot of options without overcomplicating the card, that's a sign of good design.






NUMBER 4: Thelev
Thelev This guy is interesting. Very interesting. I can see him fitting into a lot of decks. On the one hand, he's a good skill support personnel, with that coveted low Integrity/ Acquisition combo that is needed these days with Nothing to Lose so prevalent in the meta. On the other side of the attribute coin 2-6-6 means he can go in cunning- or strength- based solvers and not be a liability, all for a measly 1 cost. That's some solid value right there.

But in addition to that, he also presents some interesting defensive options as well. He's the first 1-cost Assassin in the game, and while he doesn't have the classic "return-to-kill" ability that most assassins do have, the fact that he has the keyword means that he could make use of Assassination Plot, which has been relegated to the binder since basically 2003.

But that's not all he does. His ability is useful to have at an opponent's mission, especially if that extra draw and spend of a dilemma can buy you that critical extra turn in the mid- to late-game to get over the top. Plus, as an infiltrator, he can go on - and come off of - Anything or Anyone, so you can get him over to your opponent's mission without even having to break stride on your mission solving effort.

Overall, Thelev packs a lot of versatility for a 1- cost  [NA] personnel, which is why I expect him to be showing up in more than a few decks.


NUMBER 3: Memenda
Memenda This is the first [Rom] ship in the game to have a printed range of 8 or more and not cost 7.  Let that sink in for a minute. On top of that, not only does it cost a mere 4, 4 is the most you'll pay to put it into play, as the ship's ability can reduce the cost as little as zero if you catch your opponent holding a bunch of relevant cards. That's right: the only ship you'll need to get into play in a Romulan speed solver can end up costing the same or less than any of the personnel you'd put in that deck. That's some grease right there.

Now, even with a strong card like this, there's no free lunch. It is vulnerable to Outclassed, and you still need two  [Pa]  [Rom] personnel to play it, but with Leodis (see above) and Ptol you have immediate access to six  [Pa]  [Rom] non-uniques, plus you have the classics: Keras, Charvanek, T'Auethn, and most importantly Tal, who can download whoever you need.  I'd say that's a pretty reasonable tradeoff for the speed boost this ship provides.

Is it too good? Too undercosted? Maybe. There's a case to be made, and I won't argue too hard against it. However, whether or not you think this ship is on par or above the curve, the fact is it's definitely good enough to see play, and I'd be surprised if it didn't see a lot of play in a number of different (though probably not all)  [Rom] decks going forward.


NUMBER 2: Edith Keeler
Edith Keeler
Wow. Talk about opening up deckbuilding options. Despite everything I've written above, I sincerely think this is the most dynamic card of the set and brings a LOT of different deck concepts into possible tier 1-territory.

I could probably write an entire article on this card alone (and who knows, maybe I will!) But just to touch on a few high points, I see her making my son's  [TOS] battle deck better, by increasing the speed of maneuver deployment with Advanced Battle Simulation.  I've been toying around with a  [TNG] Bluegill deck for awhile that I haven't quite gotten to click yet, and since it runs B'Hava'el, Edith can both make my copies of Peaceful Coexistence play for free AND if i don't need her ability, her 8 Integrity makes for a nice counterbalance to all my shady Bluegills running around.

Another deck I'm definitely looking to try her in that I've always wanted to build: Commodities. With Resolve Trade Dispute, getting all of those commodities out early sets things up a lot faster. It's my hypothesis that Commodities decks actually gain the most from Edith. I hope I'm right, because the thought of a tier one commodities deck definitely would make the game more fun in my view.

Funny story: Richard already touched on the difficulty Design had getting the wording right on Edith. Going back to my first playtest review I made a comment to the effect of "I don't know how good or bad Edith Keeler is because it's not entirely clear to me what it is she's supposed to do." I'm glad we were able to get that wording ironed out, because the result is one of the best cards in the set, and a great example of the theory that "Design makes cards, players make decks," and if you've ever heard me rail against LEGO Design, you'll know that adherence to this line of thinking is generally good for the game.

So that's 4 of my top 5, but I definitely think I've saved the best for last.

NUMBER 1: Gonik
Gonik This guy. So much good. So little downside.

I'm having a hard time finding anything bad to say about him. His skills are amazing, his attributes are beastly, and his printed cost is a feature, not a bug, especially since you don't have to pay it. He's basically a one man dilemma pile meta adjuster.

Nothing to Lose bothering you? He's got that. In Development making you sad? He's Developed. Adopted Authority driving you nuts? He'll bury that thing deep. He's even an asset against Underlying Influence-boosted Archaeology dilemmas (and with Treachery he can Shady Resources - remember that card? - his monster skill set to others and get you by any number of Archaeology shenanigans).

Funny story number two: an early version of this card didn't have Acquisition, and the first time I saw it was when Nothing To Lose complaints were pretty prevalent on the boards. I posted a comment that if Design is going to go to the trouble of making a low Integrity Klingon Smuggler, they should probably give him Acquisition, as it's something the Klingons need in the current meta. Thankfully, the Designers accepted that feedback and i think the card, and the game, are better for it.

In addition to his mad dilemma-busting skills, he also has that precious  [Pa] icon.  That means, in addition to playing for 2 himself, he also helps the "classic"  [Pa] Klingons (e.g., Kor, Kang, Koloth, and the like) get cheaper faster.  Envisioning a Klingon solver that plays as fast as its weenie-based competition without nearly as many drawbacks isn't particularly hard to do.

Did I mention that this guy is non-unique? Why does that matter, you ask? Well, in case you forgot (and given its lack of play lately I can forgive you if you did), Bajor, Terok Nor is a thing. So now  [AU] Gonik can take his talents to Bajor and join the KCA. That's definitely a boost to the Mirror guys as well, and I'll be shocked if he doesn't find his way into KCA decks in multiple as well - he's that good.

And finally, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention his keywords. His Thief keyword makes for a great pairing with Navaar - because he needs more skills!  - and Maras - gotta keep him alive to keep being awesome - while his Smuggler keyword allows him to use the Breenzooka (aka Breen CRM 114) to make his team literally unstoppable!

Like i said there really isn't a lot to not like about Gonik, and he should see a lot of play in a lot of decks.  This may end up being another "too good" card, but I want to see how the meta develops with him in it before I render judgement.

So there's my top 5. Hopefully you found this review helpful and maybe even gotten a inspired to put these cards to work. At the very least, even if they aren't your cup of tea, I've given you some meta things to think about as you build your next deck. There's some cards in All Our Yesterdays that don't really get me too excited, but these cards aren't among them. There's several different flavors of goodness here, and i hope you find at least one that's to your liking. I know I have.

Until next time...

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