Hello everyone, generic copy here. Today I am interviewing the Redemption player, elder, and superfan whose stats and identifiers I copied regarding his latest project, the Official Redemption Card Information Database, aka, ORCID. The project began a little over a year ago, and just recently was released for download on Land of Redemption. You can find the files in our resource section.
Please enjoy the interview, and respond with any questions or comments below!
GC: Hi Jordan. How are you today?
JA: Fantastic! It’s nice to be at the “finish” line.
GC: What’s with the air quotes on “finish”?
JA: Well, the initial part of the project is finished, but the whole project itself isn’t. With thousands of cards, many rules and rule changes throughout the game’s history, and a lot of, shall we say, varied wording that has been used throughout the life of the game, I’m sure there are many needed fixes and updates in the days and months to come. Although, now that it is available to all players, I’m hoping I won’t have to only rely on the playtest team to find errors. My hope is that everyone will be able to point them out so that I can update the documents regularly. Also, as wording continues to evolve surrounding rules and abilities, future updates will be needed. When I started the project, “banish” and “resurrect” weren’t terms in the game, so those were some changes I had to implement in the last few months.
GC: I see. So, explain what the project entails.
JA: Well, there are two primary documents: the ORCID PDF and the ORCID Spreadsheet. The ORCID PDF is an indexed document with every card in the game sorted by set, with an individual page for each card. The only official Redemption cards that are not necessarily included are the slight-variant card art/symbol cards from the Apostles, Patriarchs, Kings and Angel Wars (so the right or left fish, flipped card art, or different border color variants). Any completely new printing of a card (such as the AB sets from the past 2 Nationals, or the Unlimited print of the original set) or any card with different Special Abilities or identifiers (such as the two versions of Shadow or Stolen Blessing) is included. Each page has the card title, type, brigade, stats, class, special ability, identifiers that are written on the card, the scripture reference, the rarity, even the artist’s name. But best of all for hosts and players alike, it contains the most up to date Play As and Errata information for the card. The spreadsheet has essentially all the same information as the PDF, just in a filterable column format. So if you want to know how many cards come from Daniel, for example, all you have to do is filter the Book column on Daniel.
GC: That sounds pretty neat. When you mention the Play As and Errata, why should players and hosts be excited?
JA: Well, as we all know, several cards either don’t say what they really do (in which case they need a Play As) or they don’t do what they really say (in which case they need Errata). I’m sure it’s frustrating for new players who want to do something as simple as use Mayhem on their first turn to learn that they cannot quite do that, especially if they don’t have an account on the forums. Well this document will be an easily referenceable way for them to learn which cards have Errata, and what they say. The Play As will also clarify when an ability uses old or outdated wording as to what the ability actually does. So all those old “Take a Hero prisoner and treat as a Lost Soul” cards become “Capture a Hero” in the Play As.
GC: That does sound handy. So I was looking through the Play As and Errata, and I found some things I’ve never seen ruled before. For example, Mary Magdalene from the Women’s set is protected from orange Enhancements. When did that happen?
JA: The playtest team looked through some cards that have pretty unique wording, such that only a small number of cards use that wording, most of them are pretty old, and there is no plan to continue using it. Mary’s “connected with demons” was one of them, as is “fought in an earthly battle”, “depicting weapons”, “connected with David” and “spiritual gifts”. So we decided to errata cards with these descriptors to say something pretty close to what they mean, but more in line with what current and future cards would say. So since going forward most Enhancements that are connected with demons will be orange, that’s how Mary got that ability. These changes will also be reflected in the upcoming REG release. There are some other less obvious changes in the wording of some abilities (such as Take) that will be updated with the upcoming REG as well, and the ORCID uses them as they will be when updated. Those changes don’t impact how the cards should be played, however.
GC: Got it. So what happens if something is written in the Play As that drastically changes how the card is played? Is that official?
JA: No, more than likely it is just an error. The playtest team tried to review the documents carefully to avoid that situation, but it is certainly possible that some things fell through the cracks, just due to the large amount of cards. We did look more closely at the Erratas however, so anything written there that seems like a change, is actually legitimate, and was discussed and decided by the team. If a player does happen to see a Play As that makes it seem that the card is changed, my hope is that they will ask about it, and I can confirm if the document needs to be updated. My goal was to release the documents before any big tournaments come up, so that those types of issues can be resolved before someone tries to exploit a combo that seems to work based on a Play As being written slightly incorrectly.
GC: I see, so this is effectively a Beta version of the document then? When will it become officially official?
JA: That depends. As soon as possible is my hope, but that is up to Rob and the playtest team to decide. Until then I guess it’s the BRCID…or RCIDB…or something. But that sounds way less cool. I’d say that 99.9% of the time, it will be perfectly reliable for any ruling question needs. So everyone should feel free to use it, but if they happen to stumble upon a .1% situation, they should just know that there may be some kinks to iron out. Patience is a virtue, after all. It also happens to be a spiritual gift…
GC: Speaking of that, where’d you come up with the name for the documents?
JA: Well, I wanted a cool sounding abbreviation. I really tried to find an H word that would fit between Card and Information, but couldn’t think of one. But it should still be pronounced like OHR-KID. Like the flower.
GC: What was your favorite part of the project?
JA: Probably discovering all of the little intricacies of the game throughout its evolution, as well as some odd or humorous typo errors that I found (all on cards from before I joined the playtest team of course…). One of the funniest things I discovered was that before the Errata (which came about as part of this project) and based on other well-known rulings Raiders’ Camp was one of the most, if not the most powerful defensive card in the game, without anyone really knowing it.
GC: Why’s that?
JA: Well, if you read the original printed ability, you could always release 0 captured Heroes to instead the rescue of the Lost Soul (same reason why you can discard or shuffle a 0 card hand for Sinning Hand or Mayhem). Which means you could successfully block every single rescue as long as RC wasn’t negated or discarded, regardless of how many characters you captured.
GC: Wow. That would be bad. So how much time did you spend on the project?
JA: I bet if you asked me to estimate it, and asked my wife to estimate it, we would come up with very different answers…Needless to say, a lot. However, it was something I really enjoyed doing, both because I‘ve always liked discovering odd things, and also because I know it will be a benefit to a community I love being a part of. I also learned a ton about coding in MS Office Visual Basic, as that is mostly how I transferred the spreadsheet to the PDF. And that is also how I will be able to do massive updates (following new sets or new definitions) without spending a ton of time reformatting everything.
GC: So, what’s next?
JA: I have some ideas in mind, but for now I want to mainly focus on converting 99.9% to 99.9999%. Then I might be able to work on some of those other ideas.
GC: Why not 100%?
JA: Because there’s always room for improvement. /cliché
GC: Well, thanks for joining us today on Land of Redemption. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
JA: Yes, two things. First, I’d like to thank a couple of people who were incredibly helpful through the process. The entire playtest team deserves a lot of credit, but I’d especially like to give a shoutout to Marcus Parker (RedemptionAggie) and Gabe Isbell. I have no idea how he did it, but it seemed like every day or two as I was submitting the documents to the team, Marcus would point out a dozen things that were inconsistently worded or missing. His attention to detail was incredible, and if anyone has a hard time finding even slight errors, that would mostly be because Marcus found them already. Gabe was also instrumental in this project getting done, both in encouraging me to keep it up after the project had stalled for awhile, and in helping me release it via Land of Redemption.
GC: Well, that’s all the time we have folks. Thanks for reading! Head on over to the Resources page here on Land of Redemption and download the PDF and spreadsheet versions of the ORCID. And feel free to ask questions or add comments below!
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