Welcome to the Guardians CCG Page

This is a site dedicated to the Guardians collectible card game released by FPG in the mid '90s. This was a great game featuring beautiful artwork and a complex battle system. The game is now out of print and some cards are extremely difficult to find.

Here you will find alternate rules and game mods (including solo play), homebrew cards, and links to other Guardians sites.

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Friday, November 30, 2012

Planar Conflict Card #32: Pit Fiend

Pit Fiend belongs to Abbaddon's deck...

Planar Conflict Card #31: Astral Phoenix

Astral Phoenix belongs to Kru'chek's deck...

Monday, November 26, 2012

In a Funk...

I apologize for the lack of posts lately. Last month I lost my 12 year old Pomeranian, named Pixie, to kidney disease. My little Pixie had so much personality, and as a wee creature (she weighed 6 pounds), we shared a lot of laptime watching TV and movies, and she also slept at the foot of my bed. There's this great big emptiness now where she used to be, and my heart is crushed. I'll admit I haven't been very motivated to do much of anything lately, including creating cards. On top of that, the holidays are here (perfect timing to have your heart broken, right?), so I'm also dealing with traveling, cooking, Christmas decorations, poor weather, and shopping.

I hope to have something up soon, but it still might be a little while. Please be patient and I'll resume working on cards when I get a chance. May your holiday season be far, far better than mine...



Monday, October 22, 2012

Planar Conflict Card #30: Fire Revenant

Fire Revenant belongs to Z'Grall's deck...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Planar Conflict Card #29: Focus

This is the final Glyph card. Focus belongs to Kru'check's deck...

Monday, October 1, 2012

Planar Conflict Card #28: Willpower

Willpower belongs to Tavu-Ra's deck...

Planar Conflict Card #27: Regenerate

Regenerate belongs to Z'Grall's deck...

Planar Conflict Card #26: Speed

Speed belongs to Eil Perma's deck...

Planar Conflict Card #25: Endurance

Endurance belongs to Danuu Mreeshi's deck...

Planar Conflict Card #24: Power

Well, it appears that my first design for Glyphs has the most appeal, so here is the fist Glyph card, which belongs to Abbaddon's deck...

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Now Requiring Word Verification for Comments

I've been getting an increasing number of spam comments lately, so it's time to implement word verifications when you leave comments. I'm not changing anything else, you can still leave comments anonymously, I just want to eliminate trying to figure out if people or spambots are leaving the message. I personally can't stand using verifications because they can be so hard to decipher, but in this day and age they are a necessary evil. It's a shame that some few have to ruin things for the rest of us, but the sad fact is there are lots of these kinds of people in the world that care only about themselves.

I hope this doesn't discourage you from leaving comments...if I get negative feedback from you readers I can always turn it off. Just let me know if it gets to be a hassle.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Planar Conflict Card #23: Deranged Wyvern

Deranged Wyvern belongs to Danuu Mreeshi's deck...

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A Quick Thought About Style

In one the comment sections of the new cards, an anonymous reader expressed dissatisfaction with the "fluorescent, plasma-like, World-of-Warcraft-style" design. That is a perfectly valid criticism, as none of the flavor and humor of Guardians cards has been captured by the Planar Conflict cards. So let me explain why the cards were developed this way...

Planar Conflict cards were meant to be "scary". These guys represent a significant threat to the Mid Realms. If you remember, I started the set with a hideous purple border. While this stylistically matched traditional Guardians cards, it just wasn't working. At that point my perspective began to shift. Being from places outside the Mid Realms, I felt that that stylistically the cards should resemble Guardians, who had a "fluorescent" or "plasma-like" appearance long before World of Warcraft came around.

There's also another way to look at the design, metaphorically: if the new cards represent the current state of CCGs (by games such as World of Warcraft), then it is your duty to take these cards down with Guardians cards. Strike a blow for the Mid Realms - take a Vassal down with your Brap Back Goblins and your Sleeping Spirits! Destroy an Infernal with a Zombie and a Joomjaba! Strike a blow against these upstarts with a real game!

Thanks for listening, and keep those comments coming...

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Planar Conflict: sample of a Glyph Card

Below you will find two samples of a Glyph card. The first is a pretty straight forward glowing rune, as if it just popped into existence. The second has a trail of sparks as if the Glyph was drawn by hand, possibly with some kind of Artifact.

Please have a look and if you have any opinions, leave them in the comments. I'm having trouble choosing one, although I'm leaning towards to the first sample at the moment...

Monday, August 20, 2012

Planar Conflict Card# 22: Lightning Giant

Lightning Giant belongs to Kru'chek's deck...

Planar Conflict Card# 21: Abyssal Wyrm

Abyssal Wyrm belongs to Danuu Mreeshi's deck...

Friday, August 17, 2012

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Planar Conflict Card# 18: Barakkas the Rager

Barakkas the Rager is part of Abbaddon's deck...

Planar Conflict Card# 17: Death Harpy

Death Harpy is part of Z'Grall's deck...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Planar Conflict Card#16: Bone Flayer

Bone Flayer is part of Abbaddon's deck...

Planar Conflict Card#15: Razor Sparker

Razor Sparker is part of Danuu Mreeshi's Tavu-Ra's deck...

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Planar Conflict Card# 14: Soul Seeker

Soul Seeker belongs to Z'Grall's deck. Note the red color inside the Vitality shield, which indicates that Soul Seeker is not a channeling receiver...

Planar Conflict Card# 13: Valkyrie Champion

So I ditched the "claw", which I really didn't like, and added a second, different shield for the Size icon. Here, then is the final version for the Vassal template and also the final version of Valkyrie Champion, which belongs to Eil Perma's deck...

Monday, August 13, 2012

Vassal Template, v2.0

So here's my mock-up on what I hope will be the final design of the Vassal card. As you can see, I muted the green channeling color with a slightly darker color. I also added different icons for size and flying and moved them down towards the bottom of the card. Finally, I showed where bribery icons would go.

I like the icon for flying, but I'm concerned the "claw" icon that I used for size doesn't look too cheesy. How can it? I mean, after all, lips and beer mugs have been used from the start! Any thought?

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Planar Conflict cards# 1-6: The Planar Cards

Planar Conflict Decks

I'm finally ready to start rolling out Planar Conflict cards. Before I do, here's a look at the decks.

Think of each deck as a stand-alone product that you would walk up to the store counter and buy. Each deck contains a total of 45 cards, and contains the following:

1  Infernal
1  Control Card
12  Planar Cards
20  Vassals
5  Glyphs
2  Relics
4  Trials

There are six different Planar Conflict decks. I may add a few more in the future, but for now, here is the current list :

Planar card            Infernal
Limbo                         Dannu Mreeshi
Avernus                      Abbiddon
Carceri                       Kru'chek
Elyssium                     Eil Perma
Hades                         Z'Grall
Tartarus                      Tavu-Rae

Now that you know the make-up of the Planar decks, I can start unveiling some of the cards...

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Cooperative Play in Planar Conflict

After posting the rough draft of the rules, it might not be easily apparent how Planar Conflict is cooperative. Here are some ways in which players can work together to defeat Infernals:

1. Card trading. Need a 3 point creature to get your Shield up to 30? Didn't draw a Shield? If one of the other players has what you need, make a trade. Just remember that you can only trade cards in your Storage Hand during the Draw and Organize Phase.

2. Run block. You can keep Vassals busy while your partner makes a run at the Infernal.

3. Save your friend's butt. Is your buddy's Guardian or depleted Shield about to get pummeled by a Vassal? Move your Shield over to intercept it. Your friend will owe you one.

4. Sacrifice. Put some damage on an Infernal so the next Shield can finish it off.

5. Strategize before playing. You know what Infernal you've chosen to face. Have your friend help you build your challenge deck and vice-versa. He may think of something that you didn't.

6. Combine Dispel Magics and Bribery Cards. Runes and Artifacts take 3 Dispel Magic spells to dispel them. Some Vassals require 3 bribery cards to bribe. If you've got 2 cards and your friend has 1, you can Dispel or bribe problems away together by combining them.

I hope now you have a good grasp of how players can work together to take down an Infernal...

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Planar Conflict: Rules (Draft)

Here is a rough draft on the rules for Planar Conflict and how it differs from the base game. This is just an early draft, so nothing is set in stone...

You will need a pen and paper, or use some other way of tracking damage (like 2 ten-sided dice) for each creature in play.

Players begin with only a center Stronghold in play for each player. If there are only two players, each may have two strongholds and two Guardians. Each player chooses a different Guardian and places it behind the Stronghold. Each Stronghold space has 3 empty spaces in front of it where players will be able to place Terrain just like in the base game.

For the Infernal, there is no Stronghold. Instead, the Infernal is placed along with an accompanying Planar card. All Vassals (identified by the word "Vassal" on the back) are placed faced down in the Conflict Deck, which is then shuffled. In addition, place 9 or 12 copies (depending on the number of Terrain spaces) of the Planar card face down in the Conflict Deck. Place the Control Card in play so that the players can read it.

Opening Sequence
Unlike the base game, players will draw only 6 cards instead of 12. The Infernal draws a number of cards listed on the Control Card. Players now place Shields and Creatures on their Stronghold, observing the 30 vitality space limit. Players may trade creatures and Shields with each other...for every card a player gives up, he must receive one in return. Once each player has their Shields ready, it's time to place the Infernal's cards. If the card is a Rune, it is put in play on the left. If it is an Artifact, it gets attached to the Infernal. If it is a Trial, place it next to the Planar card, and it stays in effect for the turn. If a Planar Card is drawn, put it under the one next to the Infernal.

If a Vassal is drawn, it is placed face down in a formation similar to a pyramid, across from each Stronghold and just beyond the empty Terrain spaces. If there are 3 Strongholds, the first row of Vassals contains 3, the second row 2, and the third row 1 Vassal. If there are 4 Strongholds, the first row of Vassals contains 4, the second row 3, and so on. Vassals enter into a free space closest to the front, so if there are 3 Strongholds and 2 Vassals in the front row, the next Vassal would also be placed in the front row, and a Vassal placed after that would go in the second row. Roll to see where a Vassal is placed if there is more than one place open. When a Vassal moves and creates an open space, a Vassal behind it may then move forward.

(Note: I'll create a map to better illustrate this in an upcoming post).

Similar to the base game, players move out into the Terrain spaces and place Terrain. After all players have moved, the Vassals across from them now move. When a Vassal moves to an empty Terrain Space, place a Planar Card on the space instead of Terrain if one is available. There must always be a Planar Card next to the Infernal. For card text purposes, Vassals are considered to be under a Shield even though they don't have one. When a player's Shield and a Vassal occupy the same space, combat ensues. The players' goal is to move Shields to the Planar area and destroy the Infernal.

Unlike the base game, combat damage is permanent. Think of a creature's Vitality as both an attack value (or damage dealt), and as health (or damage that can be taken, and will still be referred to as Vitality). Let's use an example based on a Shield from one of CJ's examples: Chris's Shield. Chris runs into a Vassal but can't see what he's facing. Chris plays a Vitales Dark Cloud and does 4 damage to the Vassal. In a normal game, the Vitales probably wouldn't affect the Vassal, but here it takes 4 damage permanently.

Next Chris plays Wild Nymph, while the Vassal is flipped to reveal a Valkyrie Champion, a Vitality 44 Vassal that has an AOE destroying channeling receivers. Valkyrie Champion hits the table and launches the AOE. Wild Nymph is a channeling receiver and is discarded. Had Wild Nymph not been a channeling receiver, it would have taken 44 damage and been destroyed, but it also would have dealt 4 damage. Chris also is forced to discard Wraith, which is also a channeling receiver.

Primary attacks have ended and now secondary attacks begin. Chris plays Snogwart, doing 8 points of damage; Supermodel, doing 1 point damage; and finally Archer, doing 6 damage. The Valkyrie Champion has taken 19 points damage, but is in good shape with 25 Vitality remaining. Chris must retreat his Shield and reinforce quickly.

Notice that no channeling was initiated by the Infernal. If channeling did occur, it would be permanent. Let's say that Valkyrie Champion received 8 points of channeling during combat. That 8 points is permanent, so Valkyrie Champion's Vitality, if it was 44, is now 52. It's attack value is unchanged. The Infernal loses one Power Stone when channeling, just like a Guardian. The Infernal's Control Card will state under what conditions it will channel. Guardian channeling is the opposite: it is not permanent, and increases both attack value and Vitality (but only during the matchup).

Vassals will move across the playing field and try to kill Guardians. Players must work together to stop the Vassals while at the same time try to take the fight to the Infernal. Also, unlike the base game, a Guardian can travel under a Shield and give and receive damage, including attacking Infernals! If a player loses his Guardian(s), he is out of the game.

Other considerations
MDL: if a player controls more Terrain than any other, he gains MDL.
LDL: if a player controls the least amount of Terrain, he suffers LDL.
LUC: the lowest upcard among the players gains LUC.

The opposing Infernal does not affect MDL, LDL, or LUC.

Challenging an Infernal is similar to fighting a Vassal. The players do damage to it with their creatures or Guardians. The Control Card will indicate when the Infernal should be flipped to trigger its special ability. For card text and rules purposes, Infernals should be treated like Guardians. For example, if a card states that its ability only affects non-Guardian creatures, it would also not affect an Infernal. Once an Infernal's Conflict Deck is empty, it may destroy 1 Stronghold per turn (roll to see which one). Once all Strongholds are rubbled, the Infernal destroys 1 Guardian per turn (again, roll to see which one).

End of Game
The game ends when either the Infernal is defeated, or all Guardians are defeated.

# of Players

  • 2 players: each player controls 2 Guardians and 2 Strongholds, as well as 2 decks.
  • 3 players: each player controls 1 Guardian and 1 Stronghold with 1 deck. Alternate: same as 2 player game with player 3 controlling the Infernal.
  • 4 players: each player controls 1 Guardian and 1 Stronghold with 1 deck. Alternate: same as 3 player game with player 4 controlling the Infernal.
  • 5 players: same as 4 player game with player 5 controlling the Infernal.

I'll post a sample game soon with illustrations of key points, although I'll need to develop a few more cards first...

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Planar Conflict Sneak Peek - Vassal Design

I'm having some trouble with my home internet, and as I've stated recently I don't have a lot of time right now. Still I've managed to put in a little time to development when I can find it. Here is a first look at the new Vassal card type, featuring Valkyrie Champion. I initially called this card type a Thrall, but I like Vassal better. Once again, I must state that this is a prototype and not necessarily the final design.

Originally I intended to have Vassals be the standard Mortal/Elemental/External card types. As you can see, this is quite a departure from that. I've removed borders and text boxes, and replaced the old Vitality Shield with a new one. You'll notice that the new Vitality Shield is green in the center...this indicates a channeling receiver. A non-receiver will have a red center.

As usual, please leave any feedback in the comments section...

Friday, June 22, 2012

No Time for Guardians...

Sorry folks, all my free time right now is being spent on turning my old house into a rental so that I can get some much-needed money coming in. I have been intermittently working on a couple of new cards, as well as working through the mechanics of Planar Conflict, which I will post sometime during the next couple of weeks.

So get out, enjoy the sun, and check back in a couple of weeks or so....

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Final Design of Planar Card

After recovering from a nasty cold I got on the plane on the way back from Florida, and rejecting the Planar - Stronghold design, I've come up with my final design for Planar cards, which are now inspired more by the Guardian card type rather than Terrain or Stronghold cards. This is the design I will be going with for all Planar cards from this point forward. Note that the card text is still reflective of it being a prototype; the final card may say something different. The layout, however, will not change. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Another Planar Design Possibility

Here's another posibility for a Planar card - as a Stronghold...

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Revised Planar Card, and Planar Conflict Variants

Greetings from Orlando!

The rest of the crew is worn out after a long day of swimming with dolphins and sting rays, but I'm still going strong while I'm tasked with charging cameras, phones, and laptops, so I've got a little time to myself.

Okay, so after a comment about how bad the purple border looked, I made a change to the Planar card. To tell you the truth, I didn't really care for purple either but I was trying to distinguish it from other cards in the way that green borders were chosen for Events.

I left the purple text boxes, but removed the border so that the card is still distinctive. I think it looks pretty cool. Tell me what you think:

Also, do not fear, Planar Conflict will have it's own variant rules allowing for 2 person and solo games as well. However, co-op play will be developed first.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Another Infernal

So in the comments someone said they can't wait to see more Infernals. Here is a sample of one I've been working on. Again, it's not complete, this is just conceptual at this point...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Planar Conflict Sneak Peek: Infernals

Here is an early mock-up of what an Infernal might look like. Note that I need to flesh some things out, and the stats are only placeholders and not final values...

Friday, April 27, 2012

Cooperative Play: the Development of Planar Conflict

I've used this blog to publish a solo version of Guardians, homebrew cards, and other variants. But there's one thing I haven't really attempted yet: a cooperative variant.

Cooperative games have become quite popular lately. From the Arkham Horror & Lord of the Rings board games by Fantasy Flight Games, to World of Warcraft  and other video games, it's been proven that sometimes it's just as much fun to play alongside your friends as it is to play against them.

As you know (if you’ve been following this blog for awhile), I originally developed Solo Adventures using elements I found in other games such as Runebound and Arkham Horror. I want to do the same for a cooperative-style game of Guardians.

Back in 1999, after I initially stopped playing Guardians, I switched over to another CCG from AEG called Warlord: Saga of the Storm. It was a great game, but probably the most unique feature at the time was the Overlord Challenge. This pitted player decks against an Overlord and his army. The Overlord had inflated stats and a special, custom deck that made defeating it very challenging. To the right is an example of an Overlord.

After a few years I moved on from Warlord, turning to Upper Deck’s World of Warcraft (WoW) CCG. I soon grew bored with this game, except for the excellent Raid Decks. These Raid Decks featured a ramped-up boss, similar to the Overlord in Warlord, except players joined forces to beat Raid Decks. In fact, Raid Decks were optimized for 4-5 players with 1 player playing the boss, so if two players faced the boss, each player used two decks to simulate 4 players! It was incredibly fun and challenging. The merging of the Warlord Overlord and WoW Raid Deck concepts have served as the inspiration for my cooperative Guardian design.

Planar Conflict is a 2-5 player variant - a cooperative game for Guardians - and is part of the Celestial Battlefield set. Players team up to challenge an Infernal on another plane of existence that represents a threat to the Mid Realms and the Guardians themselves. Like Solo Adventures, it is a departure from the base game but uses some of the same elements.

The following are new card types that are seen for the first time in the Guardians environment:
  • Infernals: these villains are like Guardians, in that they are the most powerful beings in the Planar realm over which they rule. They use Glyphs and Relics, and get Vassals to do their bidding. They seek to conquer and enslave the Mid Realms, stealing the power of the Guardians. They cannot be bribed.
  • Control: these are cards that describe to the players how the Infernals behave and react, and also lists stats such as card draws, etc.
  • Vassals: servants of the Infernals, they are wicked and quite powerful in their own right. Glyphs increase their power. They are the front line - the players must go through them to challenge the Infernals. Some Vassals can be bribed.
  • Planar: this is the “Terrain” of the Infernals; it represents the realm over which they rule. Although Planar cards benefit Infernals and Vassals, some player creatures will also benefit.
  • Conflict: these cards are made up of three card sub-types: Glyphs, Relics, and Trials (see below).
  • Glyphs: like permanent Spells, Glyphs remain in play and affect the combat environment. Many Vassals gain bonuses based on the number of Glyphs in play. It takes 3 Dispel Magic cards to dispel a Glyph.
  • Relics: similar in concept to Magic Item Accesories, Relics are attached to an Infernal, giving it some kind of special power, boosts in stats, or acting as a weapon to enhance combat ability. Like Glyphs, it takes 3 Dispel Magic cards to dispel a Relic.
  • Trials: these are similar to Event cards, and change conditions during combat. They cannot be dispelled.
I'm still fleshing out a lot of the details. Obviously my Florida vacation will delay the development, but I hope to have something firm by the end of June. Just to give you a teaser, here are how some of the cards are shaping up. You might recognize the Limbo art, which we tested and ultimately rejected as C.J.'s First Circle of Hell Stronghold...

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Taking a Little Break

Hi everyone. I know the blog hasn't been very productive lately, but I've been really busy spring cleaning and preparing for a new roommate to move in. I'm also preparing for another trip to Orlando, this time to swim with dolphins & whales, in addition to Disneyworld and Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure (Harry Potter village is so awesome!). I'll try to get a few more cards posted before leaving for my trip. Thanks for hanging in there!