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The Holding Cell

“But where’s (insert missing character/ship/creature)?”

Bounty hunters aren’t the only ones to keep prisoners in carbon freeze. In the spirit of Rogues and Scoundrels, here’s the dark and treacherous tale behind those cards that didn’t quite make the expansion.

According to Henry Stern, R&D Lead for Star Wars TCG, expansion sets were originally created with their exact number of cards; if the expansion promised 100 cards, then 100 cards were sent to Lucasfilm for approval. However, this didn’t leave a whole lot of wiggle room. There’s huge devotion to the Star Wars universe, obviously, and plenty of esoteric discussions can creep into the process (…does Power 5 reflect the true danger of IG-88…?). Since these discussions must be settled before approval can take place, this affects the time needed for other aspects of releasing an expansion: getting the cards on film, getting the film to printing, and so on.

These days, Star Wars TCG expansions are designed with more cards than the set demands, knowing that some will be sacrificed to the process. For a 105-card expansion, 115 might actually be sent to Lucasfilm, since it’s wiser to cut more debatable cards rather than postpone an expansion’s release.

So what happens to these cards? As it turns out, R&D also follows a policy of “no disintegrations.” Instead, these cards are placed inside the “Holding Cell,” a special part of R&D akin to the interior of Slave 1.

Sadly, some of these imprisoned cards will never make it back to the light of day. (It’s not likely that you’ll see Kyle Katarn’s first ship, the Moldy Crow). Other cards must simply wait patiently for their release—such being the case with one gluttonous crime boss. We’ve seen Jabba’s Death Mark, but what of Jabba himself? While he didn’t make Rogues and Scoundrels, Jabba may yet appear in some future expansion.

Until then, he’ll take up more than his share of space in the Holding Cell, dreaming fondly of his dancing slave girls…