Ok, last post on Jump Drive until new information comes out. Let's break this into like 3 mini-posts.
Twitter user (and iSlaytheDragon writer/photographer) Uplift Andrew noted the graphical clarity of the new cards versus the older Race for the Galaxy cards. While the RFTG art appears to be getting recycled to a certain extent, it's presented in a far better way: text and iconography in a completely separate box, without covering portions of the art like in RFTG. For the most part.
The Moons of Color-blindness
In the above Space Symbionts card, a small moon is orbiting the planet in the bottom left corner. In the above Blaster Factory, the moon is orbiting in the top right corner. Per Lehmann, this was done to help color-blind players quickly identify types of planets without guessing on the color. I'm glad to see these little touches go into a game, most people would never even notice them unless it was called out.
Dirty Downward-facing Discard Piles
After spending a lot of time playing RFTG online as part of my GenCant celebrations, I once again really appreciate all the work the designer of this game went into taking out extraneous thought points.
In most games, it's a given you can see the discard pile. In many traditional card games sometimes this is the only information you have!
But RFTG, The City, Jump Drive (and even San Jaun) buck this historic tradition and tell players that in all cases cards are discarded facing down.
I thought this was pretty weird at first. But after countless games, I really like that I can focus with laser precision on my hand, my tableau and my opponent's tableau without trying to memorize what cards I've seen go through the discard pile.
In a big stack of cards, with many duplicates anyway, seeing the top card hardly makes a difference. But it speeds up the game by chiseling away information that might subtly affect your decision making.
When you end the round in RFTG, and I assume the same applies to Jump Drive, you have all the information you need in your hand for planning your turn, and unless there is a big upset during the turn you won't be changing your plans.
The Future of Jump Drive
Unless Rio Grande Games throws out a surprise delay, Jump Drive should be arriving in stores in time for Christmas. Very convenient indeed. Now I need to find something else to focus on for the next post.
See you then!