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9:06pm on Sunday, 6th January, 2008:

Off the Wall


A few years ago, the Star Trek collectible card game was in vogue. I didn't play it (I never did like micropayments in games), but I was curious to see if I could make money trading in them at GenCon. When I was a kid, that's how I used to get most marbles — by giving someone 4 for a really nice looking one and then trading it for 6 to someone else, rather than actually playing marbles.

I less than broke even with the cards, unless you count the money I made from the black-edged ones I took back home and sold at GenCon UK a few years later. However, I quite liked the look of them and my wife is a Star Trek: The Next Generation fan, so I had this made up:

We had it hanging in our bedroom for several years. This is what it's like on the back:

In case you can't make it out, that's Wesley Crusher. We couldn't bring ourselves to put him on the front with the rest of the bridge crew... Just as well: the rumours are that he's worth most of all the cards in the set, on account of how he's so rare (there were scenes of mass Wesley-ripping at some games conventions; setting one on fire was a prize at one GenCon UK I attended).

That's the kind of popularity you get when you have a Mary Sue in your programmes, Eugene Wesley Roddenberry...

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Copyright © 2008 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).