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2020 Mechanic Survey

by Ross Fertel, Surveyor

6th January 2022

One of the questions that comes up post-expansion release is when we will ever see the features in the set again. The answer to that question is complicated. Last year, we looked at some criteria to inform these decisiosn going forard. They are:

Popularity - How loved is it. Did players use the cards featuring it in a deck? Regardless of how it was implemented on cards, how liked is it overall.

Design Space Remaining - If we go back and make more cards, how much room is left to work? Were there a lot of 'pieces' left to follow up on later or did design exhaust the material both in terms of game mechanics and in terms of footage with attention to Star Power as appropriate.

Versatility / development – Do you need to dedicate your deck for this to be effective? If so, this might be a lower priority than something that can benefit a lot of decks. This primarily looks at the work going into making the cards themselves. Is it standard to develop or do we need to take more time specifically working on them to make it work? A basic personnel can go in just about any deck but a Ferengi Affiliated Terok Nor Waiter has a very specific purpose.

Playability - Does this have a huge effect on the play environment? We have a limited amount of time to play and even the best mechanic is not that great if it takes five (or ten) minutes to get resolved.

Popularity is something that we can gauge by popularity the number of times a card is used. Another way is to ask the community what they think. To that end, the Department of Second Edition is looking for feedback on the mechanics produced recently and the Director has empowered me to conduct this survey. I have heard the heard the community's complaints about the survey from a couple years ago have made significant changes to its format to make it shorter, but more robust.

With that in mind please fill out this survey. We ask what tier you think the main aspects from prior sets fit into. Is it the best of the best of the top of everything? Is it in that top tier but not necessarily on the very top? Is it in the middle, not great but not bad? Bottom tier? Right on the bottom?

Why do we wait to look at this? It takes time to see how the stuff in a set permeates the meta. There are early adopters, but it usually takes a good six months before it is well established in the community as a whole.

One thing we will need to determine is popularity. There are ways to tell this. Data from how much a card is used tells us a lot but it may not tell us the whole picture. To that end, While this data is important, it does not say everything. To that end, each question is followed by a comment section. This will be an opportunity for you to give us feedback on the concept. You can put as much or little as you want.

This survey is pretty comprehensive with everything we have done in 2020 from the interaction theme that has spanned sets to flip missions which were only on two cards.

What will we do with this data? Well for one, we will look at the mechanics and see which may make a return sooner rather than later if not at all. Also, we have done this for two years in a row and are getting data over time for the popularity of mechanics. It will also be available for all Second Edition Staff, including the Director.

Thank you for filling out the survey. We'll leave it open for at least a couple months for everyone to do so. Please assist us with getting everyone in the community to complete it and let us confirm our successes and what we can learn from.

Discuss this article in this thread.

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