We have a new Booster box opening for you today! Rise of the Combiners is the first expansion (Wave 2) for the Transformers TCG. Wave 2 cards can be added to your Base Set Cards (Wave 1) to make all new decks to battle with. Rise of the Combiners will hit stores on March 1, 2019.
Before I rip off the wrapper, I want everyone to know that all Wizards of the Coast product (like Magic: the Gathering, Transformers TCG) is packed in a tight, plastic overwrap that contains white Wizards logo symbols printed on the plastic. This helps ward off counterfeiters.
What is Rise of the Combiners?
Rise of the Combiners introduces new characters and mechanics into the Transformers Trading Card Game (TCG). New cards allow players to assemble and activate their team into Combiner mode while battling.
Combiner character have a new physical mechanic (in addition to flipping them over). Each Character card is a standard-sized Transformers TCG character card (3.5″ x 5″), but has a piece of the Combiner character on one side, and the Alt and Bot modes of a character on the Combiner team on the other. The cards have a reinforced hinge in the center, which allows them to be neatly folded when in play as one of several characters on a player’s team. When folded in half, the Character cards are about the size of the Battle Cards.
Now that we have these cards in hand, we can attest that the cards do lay flat nicely, and the hinge seems really strong. We’re truly impressed! We don’t think there will be long term negative effects on the hinges while folding these cards. Here is a look at the Divebomb’s Bot Mode and Alt Mode (folded closed).
Here is a look of Divebomb (UT T23) folded-open into a Combiner component. Divebomb is part of the Predaking – Ferocious Hunter Combiner Team.
Below is a look at the final Predaking Combiner if you decide to bring him out. Divebomb is just one of 5 pieces of the total Combiner. We added Card Numbers into the image below to show you that you will need UT T23, UT T33, UT T34, UT T36, and UT T44 to get this combiner out. This combiner is made of all uncommon cards.
We have all 6 Combiner Images on our Wave 2 Character Card Set List Page if you want to see them all, and want to know what numbers you need for each.
If you really want to get into the nuts and bolts of the rules on how Combiners work in the TCG, the Official Transformers TCG Rules are where to look. Here is a link. We are just going to focus on the Booster Box Opening today.
The Booster Box Opening
The Booster Box contains 30 Booster Packs. Booster Packs are huge. They are 7.5″ tall and 3.5″ wide. That is considerably larger than a typical pack of MTG / Pokemon / Yu-Gi-Oh! Booster packs. When you open the Booster packs, you notice that all the cards inside are nicely sandwiched between two solid pieces of white cardboard – similar to comic book backer boards. These backer boards do a nice job of protecting the cards inside from getting dinged up. Wizards of the Coast packages Transformers nicely.
Inside the Backer Boards you get 1 Foil Transformer Character Card, and a sealed pack of 7 Battle Cards. The Transformer Character Card is two-sided for gameplay (as we showed you above). The Battle Cards are one-sided, with a Transformer Logo Backing for gameplay.
The Facts and the Odds:
There are 46 New Transformer Character Cards and 76 New Battle Cards not previously found in Wave 1. Rise of the Combiners includes cards to assemble and activate 6 Combiner characters. Multiple character cards are needed to form a Combiner character.
Five Combiner teams have their own Enigma Battle Cards, which a player must deploy to assemble the component characters into the full Combiner character.
The side of the Booster Box gives you approximate odds on getting certain cards:
- Approximately 1:2 Rise of the Combiners Booster Packs contains a Character Card needed to form a Combiner Character (about 50% chance)
- Chances of a Super Rare Character are 1:50 (about 2% chance)
- And every booster pack contains 1 Rare Battle Card.
Some Combiners are going to be easier to acquire and make than others. Dreadwing, Menasaur and Superion Combiners use all Common cards. Devastator, Optimus Maximus and Predaking Combiners use all Uncommon cards. Volcanicus uses all rare cards. Again, we have all Combiner Images on our Wave 2 Character Card Set List Page if you want to see them all, and want to know what numbers you need for each.
Character Card Pulls
All Character cards in the Transformers TCG get the Foil Treatment – even the commons. So the Character cards all look gorgeous. What Character Cards did we get in our box? All images were previously released to the public, and you can see them all on our Rise of the Combiners Character Card Set List page. We received 10 Character cards that were not combiners.
- 2x Autobot Novastar
- Decepticon Venin
That’s 4 Commons, 4 uncommons and 2 Rares
And we received 20 cards that were combiners
- Autobot Springer – Super Rare
- Dinobot Slug
- Dead End
- Decepticon Drag Strip
- Air Raid
- Precon Rampage
- Optimus Prime
- Autobot Mirage
That is 11 Commons, 6 Uncommons, 2 Rares, and 1 Super Rare Combiner Character cards.
So, in our box, 2 out of 3 packs contained a Combiner. That is 66% compared to the 50% we should have expected. And we got lucky that we busted open a Super Rare Character Card, which we only had a 30% chance of getting.
Our overall Breakdown of Character Cards were:
15 Commons, 10 Uncommons, 4 Rares and 1 Super Rare. And we only had one double (Autobot Novastar).
We would like to mention that we love the way the Wizards of the Coast packaged the Battle cards in each booster pack. Inside each Battle Card sealed package you will get: 4 Commons, 2 Uncommons and 1 Rare. You can only see the commons through the packaging (as seen in the photo above). The rare is always the 5th card down. And the last 2 cards are the uncommons. If you are new to the game, you might need more Battle cards for your deck. And, if you run across someone selling sealed Battle cards, you know there will always be a rare in there, and the seller has no idea which one it is.
We’re not going to list the 105 cards we pulled from the Battle packs. You can see all the Battle Cards on our Rise of the Combiners Battle Cards page.
Final Thoughts on Wave 2
Our overall first impression of Wave 2 – Rise of the Combiners is great! The foil cards are beautiful and are on very nice card stock. The packaging is amazing, just like Wave 1. The folding Combiner cards are solid, with great folding technology. We are not quite sure how the Combiners will play out yet, as we wanted to get this Box Opening Up, and don’t even know if we have the right cards to make a Combiner yet.
We love the idea of the Combiners though. Unfolding Transformers and Converting Transformers into a Combiner is an amazing idea. We bet the Combiners will look awesome once they hit the table. We just don’t know yet how easy it will be to trade for the cards you need to make a Combiner. You might want to pick a Combiner you really like, and trade away your other Combiner cards to your friends in exchange for what you all need. You can make all commons combiner like Menasaur, and trade Superion common cards to your friends. Then face off against each other.
All in all, this looks like a solid expansion. We can’t wait to get some Combiners on the table!
The only downside we see right now is that we don’t know how you would sleeve your Combiner cards. You will probably have to be old school, and just play them. After all, it is a game.
One last note. The empty Booster Box has cool artwork inside and out. If you are buying the last few packs from your retailer, you might want to ask if you can keep the display. Retailers are usually very open to letting empty display boxes go to their customers.