Thursday, March 20, 2014

News: Fighter's Collection 2014 to See English Release, English TCG Approaching Synchronization

The next eight English-language set releases have been announced through the official Cardfight!! Vanguard USA Facebook page, and much excitement has been raised over the upcoming release of VGE-FC: Fighter's Collection 2014 at the end of the year. Due to the nature of FC sets as primarily featuring reprints with few new cards and the rapid release schedule of the game's English edition, it has been a concern of the English-language Cardfight community that they would never get a western release. FC2014, which is set to feature at least 23 new cards with one new grade 3 for each of the clans, has more incentive to be brought over to western shores due to the decreased count of reprints. All of these sets have been added to the official products page, sans set images.

With 37 cards and just 7 known reprints, FC2014 will feature SP reprints of Majesty Lord Blaster, Goddess of the Full Moon Tsukuyomi, Phantom Blaster Overlord, Dragonic Overlord the End, Eradicator Vowing Sword Dragon, Perfect Raizer and Top Idol Pacifica. The full Japanese setlist is not yet currently known, but as no English release of FC2013 has been announced and the set size of Fighter's Collection sets is not necessarily set in stone, it has been variously speculated that the English release could include cards from FC2013 by bumping the set size up to a full 72~80 cards, similar to the set sizes of BT01~BT05. The lack of a release for FC2013 has been a sore spot for westerners, in part due to the exclusive break rides Bleoberis and Electric Shaper Dragon, and also due to the highly coveted alternate artworks in the set for Asura Kaiser, Phantom Blaster Dragon, Blaster Blade and Blaster Dark.

More immediately, VG-BT14: Brilliant Strike and its accompanying pool of Reverse cards are suspected to be arriving in July or August. Eight releases are scheduled for after June, and with only six months remaining in that time period, it's possible that some of these will be dual releases within a single month. In particular, TD13: Successors of the Sacred Regalia and the later trial decks TD14: Seeker of Hope and TD15: Brawler of Friendship are all opportune products to release in the same month as accompanying booster sets due to how they complement the cards in Brilliant Strike and Legion of Dragons and Blades. Another possibility is for the sets following Infinite Rebirth to be released in the winter months following the new year, though this would contradict Fighter's Collection 2014's placement.

With these factors in mind, the annual World Championships--which have historically taken place in August/September through December/January--will likely be held in at least a Brilliant Strike or Divas Duet-on format, with Infinite Rebirth available in time for the finals. This oncoming rapid release schedule will likely put the English card game close to being totally synchronized with the Japanese TCG, matching the goal outlined at last year's Anime Expo of achieving simultaneous release.