Shadowfist Flashpoint Expansion

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Home > Sets > Flashpoint
[posted 15 Feb 2003; updated 28 Feb 2009]

What's in the set? - rarity, distribution by faction, and obligatory statistics
Nitpicker's Guide - errors big, small, and ludicrously small
Storyline summary - the story behind this set, summarized in a couple of paragraphs
Card list - opens in new window
Etc - whatever's left, random thoughts and comments, sometimes my opinions on this set or cards in it, and/or the State of Shadowfist at the time of this expansion

What's in Flashpoint?

Shadowfist Flashpoint booster display boxDaedalus Entertainment's second (and last) expansion set was the booster-only Flashpoint set printed in 1996. All cards are black-bordered with a gold foil Buro Blue Spear (a type of automatic rifle) stamp Flashpoint in the upper right corner. Some of the cards appear more than once on the card sheet, so you'll find them more often than others of the "same" rarity. My card lists include the rarities determined by counting the cards on the uncut sheets.

Shadowfist Flashpoint booster packThis set featured 147 cards, with rarities divided into Common, Uncommon and Rare. Booster packs contain 8 randomly assorted cards; each display box contains 30 boosters.









Booster - usual




Booster - rare




* I count the promo White Ninja as a rare in this set, because she actually appears in some boosters, and she has a Flashpoint symbol. If you prefer to count her as a promo, then there are only 16 rares in Flashpoint, and the set total is 146.

Flashpoint Info Card, Flashpoint. Art copyright 1996 Brian Snoddy. Used with permission.This set included an "Info Card" to provide new rules and rulings for players who didn't have the FAQ or the Players' Guide. The Info Card is not playable. It appears as an Uncommon card, and that annoyed a lot of people, which is why Daedalus offered to trade them for rare cards (keep reading...).

The distribution of the rare cards is unusual (to say it politely) in Flashpoint. Daedalus decided to put a rare card in about one out of 4.5 packs (4 - 7 rares in each box), rather than one in every pack. Rare cards take the place of a Common card in those packs. When you do the math, you can figure out that there were a lot more Rare cards printed than were distributed in boosters. Some were given away at conventions. Others were offered in a mail-in program where people could swap Info Cards 2-for-1 for random rares. The rest are gone, rumored to have been stolen from the Daedalus offices and sold on the secondary market (which means that some card dealer somewhere has a huge box of Flashpoint rares and doesn't know what they are or what to do with them :).

Daedalus also introduced the "play as printed" concept in this set, with the new Alchemist Lair and White Ninja. Players were allowed to use the version of their choice (or to mix and match, if they liked) but the "maximum 5 in a deck" rule still applied.

Here's the breakdown by faction and by card type. Apologies for the formatting of the table, but it's much smaller to plop an image in than write a table in HTML. Eventually I'll try out the CSS thing and redo all my tables...

Shadowfist Flashpoint Expansion breakdown by type and faction

Looking at this graphically may or may not help you, but I like it. Click either graph to see a larger version in a new window.

Breakdown of Flashpoint cards by faction Breakdown of Flashpoint cards by type

The Dragons and the Architects got the largest chunks of cards in this set, which makes sense from a story perspective.

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The Nitpicker's Guide: Flashpoint

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Storyline Summary: Flashpoint - The Arcantowers, Now and Then

Like Netherworld, the fiction for Flashpoint wasn't published. It was roughed out by Rob Heinsoo, and small blurbs appear in the Shadowfist Players' Guide, but I can't find the whole story anywhere. Daedalus never posted much about the storyline; the only thing I could find was this one posting by Jose in the newsgroups [, 8 Feb 2003] which didn't help too much. As far as the Feng Shui roleplaying game is concerned, Flashpoint hasn't happened yet, so there's not much help from that direction either except for a few bits that show up in the Back for Seconds book. I've cobbled this summary together based on that, the Players' Guide and Rob's unpublished notes.

The Architects secretly start to grow an Arcantower in the jungles of South America in the modern juncture. When fully grown, it will cause a critical shift. Colonel Griffith leads the Architect force in the jungle. They are helped by Dunwa Saleem, a traitor to the Lodge, who intends to hide the project from the Ascended until it is too late. The Dragons discover the plot when Dirk Wisely steals information from an Architect base in the modern juncture. Dirk plans a strike against the new Arcantower (Kar Fai is in the AD69 juncture where Throne War trouble is already brewing, and doesn't appear in this story). Jason X points out that the portal in Tower Square in the 2056 juncture must be attacked at the same time to prevent Architect reinforcements from coming through. Zheng Yi Quan leads the team to the Amazon and Jason X leads the team to hold the Portal. The Dragons encounter stiff resistance in 2056, where Genghis X faces off against Jason X. Homo Omega puts a stop to that fight; Jason X is last seen fighting Homo Omega when the Jammers arrive to cause even more confusion. The Architect reinforcements don't make it through the Portal.

In the Amazon, Dunwa has duped Sam Mallory into attacking the Dragons' force. After some serious butt-kicking on both sides, Melissa Aguelera convinces Sam that the Lodge has been betrayed, and he joins with the Dragons to assault the tower. For whatever reason, Shih Ho Kuai also shows up, I guess because it makes a good picture on Comrades in Arms :) The Golden Gunman, Sam Mallory, and Shih Ho Kuai take out the Arcantower Now.

At the end of the day, Marisol and Big Joe Conner are dead (who's Big Joe? I have no idea), Jason X is presumed dead, and a bunch of other guys are hurt badly (but that doesn't mean much in Shadowfist :)

In the Back for Seconds book, we learn that Jason X isn't really dead, he's been captured by Homo Omega and will be used in some sinister plot that he and the Vivisectors are cooking up. (this thread is continued in the Year of the Dragon story, and ends in Dark Future where Jason X reappears as an Architects card).

From a story perspective, I'd have loved it if the Arcanotower cards were more playable. They did see a bit of play at first (novelty, I suspect) but in general they just aren't quite as good as Secret Headquarters...

previous story summary (Netherworld) | back to top | next story summary (Year of the Dragon)

Etc: Flashpoint

Flashpoint was another gift to the Dragons, which I guess makes sense based on the story, but didn't make much sense to me from a play balance standpoint. Flashpoint opened up a couple of new deck types, like the Gun deck and the Peacock deck, but what it really did was unleash Hacker and City Park, on everyone, everywhere.

The Dragons win again here, getting Hacker. Everything else is secondary to that :) They were handed a new deck type, with Ex-Commando, Both Guns Blazing, and Slo Mo Vengeance. Did I mention Hacker? They got several new hitters, but they didn't rate compared to Ting Ting or the Gunman so they didn't get much credit (and there's Joey Paz, who didn't rate compared to anybody :). Oh yeah, and they got Hacker.

All the other factions win too, because they also get Hacker :) and City Park. But the other factions got a sprinkling of interesting cards, nothing over-the-top.

The Jammers finally got a decent boost here, with solid mid-range hitters Gorilla Fighter and Homemade Tank (yeah, I know it's a State, but it's the best hitter the Jammers had :). Dallas Rocket and In Your Face Again weren't bad either. However, their events were generally still sub-par, and with no alternate power generation they were still lame by themselves.

The Ascended got a playable Lodge hitter with Sam Mallory, although it turns out that he plays best with Dragons in the mix and wasn't soooo playable that anyone dropped their speed Pledged decks for long. Mr. Big and some Hood support cards opened the concept of a decent Hood deck, and Lodge Politics was my favorite for a card that played like it was named.

Finally, everyone loses because of the stinky distribution of rares; not that the rares were all that earth-shattering, but it's the principle of the thing :) It didn't help that the rare Sites were R2s, so when you finally did get a rare card, much of the time it was a duplicate Site you already had!

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