News for January 2011
Scratching the Stars 24
A preview for Cosmic Conflict, an expansion for Cosmic Encounter
Cosmic Encounter | Published 06 January 2011

Planets have been disappearing at an alarming rate, leaving no trace of their existence behind, besides the occasional vacant moon...with signs of a gigantic claw tearing through it.

Our exploration of Cosmic Conflict, the upcoming expansion for Cosmic Encounter, as so far uncovered the secrets of Hazard cards and Filth, as well well as they treachery of the Saboteur. Today, we’ll take a quick look at a new alien, sure to scratch that itch for interstellar devastation.

Soon Cosmic Conflict will populate your swelling ranks of playable alien races with plenty of new options. From the speedy Cavalry to the shifty Changeling, each alien race introduces new abilities and unpredictable changes to play. One of these new alien races is sure to be a fan favorite, known and feared by even the staunchest combatants in Cosmic Encounter.

A Stealer of Planets

The Claw has an interesting and terribly destructive special ability, able to snatch planets away from opponents in the blink of an eye. The Claw adds an element of bluffing to the game, making opponents constantly guess which card is secretly the Claw, awaiting to steal their planets away!

(Click to enlarge)

Watch store shelves, because the conflict is coming. Are you prepared?


Cosmic Encounter is a classic board game that puts players in charge of the fate of an alien race. Three to five players each strive to be the first to conquer five enemy colonies and establish themselves as the dominant life form in the galaxy. With over 50 alien characters to choose from, no two games are ever the same.

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Comments (24)

Published: 1/25/2011 5:08:27 PM

 Just to make sure I have this right, the planet itself counts as a foreign colony if you steal it, you do not need to put any colonies on it (and if you do, those colonies count as home colonies).

Sounds awesome.

The Warp
Published: 1/11/2011 12:49:41 PM

I was just telling a friend how much I can't wait to get my claws on The Claw.  This, like Saboteur is going to really add the best tension to the game.  What I love most about CE is how different aliens (and different combos of aliens) can really change the flavor of the game.  I also love an alien that lets me gleefully consider my options and then bide my time to strike. 

Published: 1/10/2011 8:50:04 PM

 From the style of it this looks like a Ryan Barger illustration. He did about half of the powers in the base set and all but one of the powers in the expansion.

Coin-coin le Canapin
Published: 1/8/2011 10:40:05 AM

@hulahoop : except the empath ;)

My guess is that they mostly show red power because they're stranger or/and impressive.

Does anyone know where I can found informations about the artist who illustrated The Claw? that's not the same (feliciacano) as the three previous ones...

Published: 1/7/2011 10:53:25 PM

Well, probably will house rule something simple like Claw can only reveal a non-negotiate card for the "claw" to activate his ability.. to get rid of scenarios where he's forced to put a negotiate card otherwise..  though nothing to prevent him from hiding an unwanted negotiate card (can't tell anyway and makes little difference).. Nice mind games to play with others, and it hurts the other players sufficiently (-1 home colony almost always.. if you choose one with his ships on it).. can see him being ganged up again if he successfully steals more than one planet..

And anyone noticed all the aliens previewed are red?

Published: 1/7/2011 6:26:29 PM

The earliest reference I immeditely think of when I hear 'The Claw' is the oriental mastermind bad guy in the old TV series 'Get Smart.' Just a bit of pop culture for the youngies! ;)


Published: 1/7/2011 5:03:27 PM

I believe the name comes from Toy Story.  The three eyed aliens worshipped it.  It would occasionally snatch one of the aliens away seeminlgy at random.  It's name must have the the, and it should be said with revererence.  Like so,"The Claaaaaaaaw!".  It also works better if you get the whole table to say it in unison.

Published: 1/7/2011 4:51:48 PM


There is no time to play a finder or a handzap before the claw card gets replaced.  There's effectively no pause inferred between getting the card back and replacing it on the alien sheet.

@Adam & Joe,

Leviathan is still pretty good.

Coin-coin le Canapin
Published: 1/7/2011 11:08:11 AM

@Adam , when I first played the French version of the game, I was confused about the new alien names.

They added "Le" or "La" before each name of alien (it's the French "the").

For example, they renamed "Zombie" to "Le Zombie". Weird.

By the way, I don't really like "the claw" as the alien name and power too.

Published: 1/6/2011 10:24:03 PM

I have to assume they meant to have the "non-negotiate" modifier also apply in the game text.  Otherwise, why even bother? You could just put any old card down during Game Setup and then swap in a negotiate on the very first regroup phase of the game — literally seconds later.


EDIT: Ninja'd by sepayne7l.  I think you're right, but I don't think you even have to wait for the second encounter.

Published: 1/6/2011 10:21:36 PM

From reading the card, I think the spirit of the power would say that you can never put negotiate cards down as the claw. It says at the start of ANY regroup phase you can swap a card from your hand with the claw. That would only prohibit the claw from being a negotiate card for the first encounter of the game. If that were the case, why not allow a negotiate to start, since it can become one 2 minutes into the game?

It seems like a power that will only get used once or twice a game, but looks awesome when it happens.



Kobold Curry Chef
Published: 1/6/2011 8:14:57 PM

Well, assuming that you can never use a Negotiate as your claw.  The more I re-read that, the less confident I am in that assumption...

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