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2E Emergency Errata - Playing by the Rules

by Stefan Slaby, Second Edition Errata Manager

17th November 2020

One Second Edition card is receiving errata today.

Apocalypse Rising was released only last friday. Now Playing by the Rules receives errata before it ever becomes tournament legal? Our apologies, mistakes have been made. Many experienced volunteers from Design, Playtesting, Rules, Art, and Proofreading have completely missed this card's issues. (Yes, there's more than one issue.) If you haven't already been involved in the last days' frantic discussions, why don't you continue reading to take a look at the original wording, and try to spot the issues yourself? The original text was:

Playing by the Rules
Ritual. (When you play this event, if you do not command a Ritual, draw a card. Cards you own cannot destroy this event.) Plays in your core. When a player is about to return a non-Damage dilemma that costs 1 or more to their dilemma pile, the opponent on their right may discard a non-[Bor] personnel from hand to place that dilemma beneath one of that opponent's non-headquarters missions instead.

In my experience, this kind of issue seems much more obvious in hindsight, though it helps a lot to simply know that there actually is an issue, so you won't get distracted by the (intended) gameplay impact of a powerful card. If you do happen to spot the issues, please be kind to all the people who missed them. (Have you considered volunteering yourself?) Most of our volunteers' work is excellent, and we'd like them to keep doing it!

Anyway, here come the issues:

  1. The dilemma's owner is not always the person doing the returning. Most importantly, during a mission attempt, a dilemma's gametext gets executed by the player facing it. So, taken literally, the original wording would not trigger at all when a dilemma returns itself after being faced!
  2. There are many cards which return dilemmas to a dilemma pile when those dilemmas have never entered play at all. The original wording would have triggered off such cards, allowing to generate overcomes when a player simply uses e.g. Unexpected Difficulties, and (depending on the resolution to Issue One) even abuse e.g. Helen Noel to actively generate overcomes.
  3. Finally, there've been complaints that this card causes undue collateral damage by affecting Persistent dilemmas. (Which weren't excluded by the original wording, mostly for lack of space.)

Playing by the Rules - Original Version
Original

Playing by the Rules - Errata Version
Errata

These issues are serious enough to warrant immediate errata, before the card becomes tournament legal. The Errata Team has been working together with other departments to find a wording that resolves the issues while remaining faithful to the original design intent. And here's what we've come up with:

Playing by the Rules
Ritual. (When you play this event, if you do not command a Ritual, draw a card. Cards you own cannot destroy this event.) Plays in your core. When a dilemma is about to be returned to a dilemma pile during a mission attempt in which it was faced (or from beneath an incomplete mission), that mission's owner may discard a non-[Bor] personnel from hand to place that dilemma beneath their non-headquarters mission instead.

This change is effective immediately!


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