Rules and regulations? Why?
In a word: maturation.
In the early days of community-driven Transformers TCG, it was easier for smaller teams of creators to share ideals, resources, and goals. As the community began to grow and diversify, so did the interests, goals, and abilities of those creators. Given the rich depth of perspectives and behaviors of the creator and contributor base now responsible for the content of the game, the creator community must “grow up” – and embrace guardrails and guidelines.
The All Are One Ideals that each of the original community groups signed onto should be kept top-of-mind when it comes to rules and regulations. Additionally, it becomes more apparent that the following principles must be upheld in the pursuit of creating content:
These rules and regulations will help ensure those principles are foremost in practice and in process.
Community creator team
For the purposes of rules and regs, it’s necessary to define the current structure of community creators within the Transformers TCG.
- [BF] billmoo, principal of Team Bayformers
- [TROP] TheEnergonHustler, principal of Turbo Revving Old Punks
- [Ark] Technomagus, principal of The Ark
Subteam: Team Bayformers
- [BF] billmoo, principal
- [BF/PP] Hawkhammer
- [BF/PP] Legendary Void
- [BF/PP] ScorpX7
Subteam: Turbo Revving Old Punks
- [TROP] TheEnergonHustler, principal
- [TROP] KingNaga
- [TROP] Matafer
- [TROP] Ozzy
- [TROP] Sandman
- [TROP] Wheeljank
Subteam: The Ark
- [Ark] Technomagus, principal
- [Ark] MikeComicMan
- [Ark] SaltyN7
- [Ark] Wes
- Vangelus, media, marketing
- Veral, TTS mod developer
- Z-R0E, teletraan1.net developer
The Transformers TCG community values a number of ideals and principles. However, when decisions must be made, knowing which ideals and principles have greater weight than others can be key.
Keep in mind that the ranking is relative. Just because a value is placed near the top does not always mean it outranks lower-placed values and vice versa. Likewise, a lower-place value is still highly important to the community. Reason, logic, and compassion are key. New ideals and principles may be added at any time.
- Transformers TCG players are important – no matter their skill level, time spent in the game, amount of media exposure, or self-identifiers.
- A healthy gameplay meta is a highly diverse one. Cards and designs that reduce diversity are counter to community design ideals.
- The WotC Fan Policy must be honored.
- Mechanics made by creators should be made available to other creators after their initial release.
- All play styles should be encouraged with none more worthy than the other: competitive, casual, party, or solo.
- Powerful cards are acceptable, as long as they do not reduce design space or meta diversity.
- Everyone should be given the opportunity to make cards.
The following sources of art are considered “fair play” for community card creation, and no one creator has priority over any other for utilizing art from these sources.
- Art previously utilized for the Transformers Legends mobile game
- Art featured in Transformers box art, packaging, and promotional materials produced by Hasbro, Wizards of the Coast, or TakaraTomy
- Art featured in official Transformers comics series, including those published by:
Hasbro, Wizards of the Coast, and TakaraTomy have edited existing art for projects, and so recolors and edits to existing art are acceptable as long as the standards and spirit of the original art are maintained in an art and artist-positive way. This rule only applies to art from the above sources; fan art and commissions cannot be edited save by the original artist and the origin of the commission.
Some of the reasons why recolors and edited art may be rejected for use:
- Sloppy/bad/rough work
- Edits that go against the spirit of the original work; e.g. satirical, comedic, or suggestive edits
- Other unused, existing art that fulfills the need of the card or concept
Explicitly excluded from the “fair play” art sources list are the following sources.
- Fan art should never be used unless explicit permission from the artist(s) has been acquired
- Art commissioned by a specific creator is always for the exclusive use and permission of the original artist and the creator that commissioned it
As mentioned above, no creator has priority over any other for most sources of art (save the exceptions detailed above). It is important that creators have a relatively equal level of access to art, with no one creator hoarding or unfairly claiming art for their own purposes.
To formally claim art for works, a creator should follow the “dibs” rule, as detailed in Appendix A.
To resolve conflicts around competing, similar ideas, utilize the “dibs” process as detailed in Appendix A.
Signoff by all project principals must be obtained before any major, non-1C Open release.
Public beta duration
Absolutely no Public Beta for any release larger than one card shall be shorter than 3 months in length. Time spent in a private alpha does not count towards the Public Beta length. A Public Beta’s unannounced “soft launch” does not start the Public Beta – announcements must be public, obvious, and broadcast widely.
For upcoming releases larger than 100 cards, it is highly recommended that the Public Beta run for at least six months.
For individual new card releases (such as a 1C Open card), a one to two-month public beta is recommended.
The release of holiday-related cards and releases is an effective way to market the game. However, tying a release to a calendar date has its challenges and risks. Therefore, when working with holiday releases
These regulations are put in place for the values of accountability, fair play, and ownership in the pursuit of card creation. Each project principal has signed onto them with those values in mind. Blatant or repeated disregard for these regulations will leads to consequences for the violating creator up to and including removal from the creator community.
Appendix A: The “dibs” process
If a creator is working on a card or feature for a near-future release, they should utilize the “dibs” process to protect their work