24 August 2018 | Cosmic Encounter

A Close Encounter

Producer Molly Glover Looks Forward to Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition


In the Cosmic Age, spaceships whirl through space, sending alien species across the galaxies to establish colonies and ensure their civilization’s dominance. In Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition, you become the leader of a unique species, guiding them as they take to the stars and use negotiation, betrayal, and war to earn your victory. With advanced technology and your own special abilities, the race is on to establish the colonies needed to ensure interstellar supremacy; but be wary—diplomacy is every bit as important as strength in numbers, and you never know when a friend may become your enemy.

For more than four decades, this classic social game of galactic conquest has delighted players with madcap clashes, colorful characters, and fast-paced gameplay that challenges you to think on your feet and adapt to ever-shifting alliances. Now, as the game evolves into its latest edition, we meet with producer Molly Glover to discuss what awaits in Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition!

Molly Glover on Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition

Fantasy Flight Games: When did you first become interested in Cosmic Encounter? What about the game made it resonate with you?

Molly Glover: When I worked in the Sales department, I sold a lot of Cosmic Encounter. That was my first realization of how popular the game is. Then, I worked on The Wars to Come expansion for Game of Thrones: The Iron Throne, and I fell in love with the Cosmic Encounter mechanics that were brought over to that game. When I found out I was working on Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition, I was so pleased that I would get to spend time with the original game and its aliens. It was really cool to delve into the game, the expansions, and the FAQ; I learned a lot!

FFG: Forty-two years is quite an anniversary! Why do you think Cosmic Encounter has stuck around?

MG: What Cosmic Encounter brings to the table is a beautiful kind of controlled chaos, and that's not something that's easy to achieve in a board game. It's easy enough to learn the basics of play, but difficult to master all the interactions of the various aliens, flares, technologies, and other abilities; after your first game, you immediately want to play again. Add that to the family-friendly nature of the aliens and the amazing art that goes with them, and you have a game that can truly be enjoyed by all ages. It doesn't surprise me at all that Cosmic Encounter has been a mainstay of gaming for more than four decades.

FFG: What do you think players will enjoy the most about this edition of Cosmic Encounter?

MG: We have this fantastic comic-book-style Quick-Start Guide for brand-new players that takes you through a basic encounter, so you can jump right into playing the game. Plus, the new rulebook is so well organized and easy to use that new and experienced players alike will appreciate it. The new Cosmic Combo cards make setup really easy and can provide fun, thematic challenges with their combinations of aliens. More than anything, though, I think players are going to adore the new translucent spaceships. The colors are really gorgeous, and the ships look so cool on the table.

FFG: What was the most difficult part of developing this latest edition of Cosmic Encounter?

MG: Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition is replacing the previous edition of the Core Set, which means we needed to keep a lot of the game exactly as it was so that it would still be compatible with all of the expansions. However, we also wanted it to feel new and fresh to appeal to experienced players, should they choose to add it to their game collection. All of those expectations required a tricky balancing act! I think we really managed to create a new edition that brings in new players, while providing exciting new aspects and components that make the purchase worthwhile for experienced players.

FFG: Which alien species do you identify with the most?

MG: If we're strictly speaking species traits, probably Mirror. Mostly because I'm bad about directions, but also because I'm good at turning things around so a negative situation can become positive. I also relish symmetry. If we're talking about game mechanics, I definitely identify with Loser. I very rarely win games, but when I do, it's an upset. And I love being able to turn the tables with Loser's power!

FFG: Can you give us any insights into the minds of the Demons?

MG: I would never presume to know such arcane and terrifying things! That said, in my experience, Demon will possess you and then go on their way. It's not an ideal situation, being possessed, but it's nigh impossible to escape. Best not to worry about it and enjoy their presence in your game.

FFG: How do you plan to celebrate when Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition is released?

MG: The only way to celebrate such a thing: gather my friends, grab some snacks, and vie for galactic dominance until the sun comes up!

Bright Lights on the Horizon

Thanks, Molly!

The time is fast-approaching when Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition will land on shelves. Are you ready to launch your ships and begin your cosmic conquest? Form your alliances, build your colonies, and ensure your civilization’s rule across the stars!

Look for Cosmic Encounter 42nd Anniversary Edition (CE01), the new standard version of the classic game, when it hits shelves in the third quarter of 2018 or pre-order your copy at your local retailer or through our website here!

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