Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Archives TCG: Nerdiest thing EVER.

Sooooo, this is supposed to be a wrap-up post on SAA 2010. Which I swear I am still going to do. But first for something a bit sillier. OK, check that, a LOT sillier.

A bit of context: 2011 is SAA's 75th Anniversary Year, which means a lot of ill-conceived nostalgic foolishness. Exhibit A: Archivist Trading Cards. No, really, check that link. This is a true thing that is happening that is being sponsored by SAA. Go ahead. I'll be here when you get back. (Let the record show as well that Student Archivists at Maryland thought of this first.)

Anyway. Have you read the call for archivist trading cards? A little frivolous for a professional organization, you say? A lot of the Archives Twitterati thought so too. In fact, we took it a step further: why just have trading cards when you can have a COLLECTABLE CARD GAME?

@cdibella: I'm sorry, but the prospect of #archives trading cards makes me giddy. Hans Booms, black box, that crazy macroappraisal diagram - I want.

@sheepeeh: @cdibella I may or may not have a set of attribute icons and monster cards in my sketchbook already.

@cdibella: @sheepeeh Omigod - too cool. SAA's example card is pretty darn staid, but there's definitely a lot of potential there.

@sheepeeh: @cdibella As soon as I heard about the trading cards, I started imagining an #ebz like game for archives :P #nerd (never a big Magic player)

@derangedescribe: @sheepeeh @cdibella Archives: The Processing? @herodotusjr could write the rules.

I am sure Ms. Goldman thought she was being funny because Magic: the Gathering is one of the Big Three topics I tweet about, the others being Archives and Politics. Well WHO'S LAUGHING NOW HUH?! I give you the introductory rules for ARCHIVES: THE PROCESSING, the first trading card game where you fight not for universal domination, but for domination of the ARCHIVES WORLD! MUAHAHAHAHAH *cough cough* Sorry.

(Note: These rules are highly influenced by Magic: the Gathering, so all apologies to Richard Garfield, Aaron Forsythe, Mark Rosewater, etc. None of the example cards are balanced at all and are likely to stay that way unless the full set is actually developed, which seems unlikely if it's just me. So in the unlikely event that you are reading this and want to submit cards or card ideas, please feel free. If you are one of my Magic friends who have drifted over here, I am so, so sorry for butchering the game. But the potential for lulz was just too high. Also, I am probably the biggest geek in the history of geekdom for doing this.)

You're an archives manager looking to achieve complete archives domination. Or failing that make those other repositories fall flat on their faces. (We don't go for those namby-pamby consortia here in the world of Archives: the Processing.)

Win the game by either reducing your opponents’ Reputation to 0 (starting from 20; when Reputation = 0 the head of that player's institution no longer sees a point to an archives and discontinues the program) or accumulating 20 Processing Points (starting from 0; when you hit 20 processing points you have cleared out your backlog and are acknowledged as an Archives rock star).

Resources: Analogous to lands in MTG, produce Funding instead of Mana. Come in basic and specialized flavors. Basic Resource Types:
· Public Grants: W
· Institutional Support: U
· Shady Sources: B
· Benefactors: R
· Private Grants: G

T: Add WW to your Funding Pool. This Funding can only be used on Arrangement, Description, or Preservation cards or to pay upkeep on Project Archivists.

Electronic Records Management Initiative
T: Add an amount of U to your Funding Pool equal to the number of Computer Artifacts you control.

Analogous to creatures. Legendary if named (Greene/Meissner, Margaret Cross Norton, Schellenberg, etc.) Instead of power and toughness have Publishing Offence/Defense to put dents in Reputation. Usually require resource upkeep cost.

University Archivist 2U

Salary U (During your upkeep, pay U or sacrifice this archivist.)
If you would tap University Archivist to add a processing counter to a University Collection, add two processing counters instead.
T: Draw a Card.

Tenure-Track Professor 4GG
Salary GG (During your upkeep, pay GG or sacrifice this archivist.)
Rhetoric (This archivist may only be blocked by other archivists with Rhetoric.)
Tenure-Track Professor cannot be tapped to add a processing counter to a Collection.
Sacrifice a Student: Add a processing counter to a University collection.

STRATEGIES: Analogous to enchantments. Have one or more of seven subtypes (preservation, description, arrangement, appraisal, reference, outreach, acquisition). Provide benefits to player who controls them, sometimes include drawbacks. Cannot have more than one of each subtype on board at once.

Collection Policy 1UUU
Strategy—Acquisition Appraisal
As Collection Policy comes into play, name a Collection subtype. Collections of that subtype require 1 fewer Processing counters to Process. This effect can’t reduce the Processing cost below 1.
You may ignore any effects triggered by rejecting a collection.

More Product Less Process 2RR
Strategy—Arrangement Description
At the beginning of your upkeep, put an additional Processing counter on each collection you control.
You may only play one Action, Challenge, or Artifact per turn.

ACTIONS: Analogous to instants. May have one or more of seven subtypes and are usually, but not always, used for defensive or beneficial purposes. Discarded after playing.

Conference Presentation 1G
Search your library for a basic Resource and put it into play tapped. Then shuffle your library. You gain 2 Reputation.

Collection Sell-Off B
Action—Acquisition Appraisal
As an additional cost to play Collection Sell-Off, return an unprocessed collection you control to the accessions deck. You may add an amount of B to your Resources pool equal to the number of processing counters on that collection.

CHALLENGES: Analogous to sorceries. May have one or more of seven subtypes and are usually used for offensive purposes. Discarded after playing unless they have Ongoing supertype, in which case only one of each subtype can be put on the field at once.

Mildew 2B
Ongoing Challenge—Preservation
Affect Opponent
Collections affected opponent controls have “At the beginning of your upkeep, sacrifice this collection unless you pay 1.”

Inconsiderate Researcher XRR
Challenge—Reference Preservation Remove X processing counters from target collection. Inconsiderate Researcher does X damage to that collection’s controller.

ARTIFACTS: “Tools of the trade”, usually have a beneficial effect for controller. May be tapped or sacrificed for additional benefit.
Hollinger Box 2
Preservation Action or Challenge cards cost 1 less to play.
T: Add U to your resource pool.

Reading Room Reference Collection 5
Archivists you control get +1/+1 for each other archivist you control.
At the beginning of your draw phase, draw an additional card.

COLLECTIONS: Free cards revealed from the Accession pile. Have processing point value which shows how much processing they require and how many points they provide once processed. May or may not have additional benefits. Untapped: Unprocessed; Tapped: Processed

Photo Series
Collection—Visual Records
When you complete processing on Photo Series, you gain 3 Reputation. If you also control an artifact named Content Management System, you gain 6 Reputation instead.
If you reject Photo Series, the next time you would gain Reputation, you gain no Reputation instead.


Unsolicited Benefactor Papers
Collection—Paper Manuscript
At the beginning of your first main phase, if Unsolicited Benefactor Papers are processed, you may add RR to your funding pool and lose 1 reputation.
If you reject Unsolicited Benefactor Papers, sacrifice a resource and lose 4 reputation.


· UPKEEP: All “During your upkeep” things happen. Active Player places one “free” processing counter on an unprocessed collection he controls (representing his/her own processing efforts that turn).
· ACCESSION: Active Player reveals top card of communal collections deck. S/He may choose to accession the collection, in which case it enters play unprocessed under his/her control, or to reject it, in which case it’s put on bottom of deck. There may be consequences for rejecting a collection as noted on the collection card. “Accession” or “Appraisal” Action cards may be played at this time by any player.
· DRAW: Player draws one card from own constructed deck (action, funding, archivist, strategy, challenge, artifact).
· FIRST MAIN: Players may play one Resource Card per turn during this phase. Any number of non-Resource cards may be played. Cards in play may change these limits. Any player may also play Action Cards of any subtype during this phase.
· PROCESS: Active player may tap any number of his archivists to add that many processing counters to his collection. OR he can attack the reputation of an opposing archives (Representing a withering scholarly article published somewhere). Opposing archives may block with any untapped archivists available to prevent damage to the defending player's reputation. If an Archivist takes damage equal to his reputation defense, that archivist is Fired and goes to the discard pile. “Arrangement”, “Description”, or “Preservation” Action cards may be played at this time by any player.
· SECOND MAIN: See First Main for cards which may be played during this phase.
· DEACCESSION: Damage is removed from Archivists and “Until End of Turn” effects end. All Resources remaining in your pool drain and do one damage to your Reputation per resource (Administrators don't like it when you don't spend the money that you have been allocated). Any player may play Action cards at this time.