Upper Deck shared preliminary plans for the format change with ICv2 this summer (see “Upper Deck Shifts 'VS System' Release Format”). In February, Upper Deck will introduce a new type of smaller expansion, called Issues, which will be released monthly, which focus on a specific theme. The releases will include around 55 cards, and will contain new Main Characters, Supporting Characters, Equipment, Plot Twists, and Locations.
Each Issue release will be part of a larger story Arc that concentrates on a character, storyline or theme. The Issues will interact with the Arc in a specific way. The first Arc launching in February is The Beginning. The Arc will run for 3 Issue packs, focusing on the New Mutants storyline that introduced Deadpool.
Existing small-box expansions (A-Force, Defender, Legacy) will be renamed Giant-Sized Issues, and may still be used, possibly as standalone products, or as part of an Arc. The big-box-style releases (Monsters Unleased!, The Marvel Battles) will be retired for now.
Upper Deck is making these changes in response to distributors, retailers, and players requests for more content released on a more regular basis.On its Facebook, an Upper Deck representative confirmed "these changes will apply across the board in the U.S. and Internationally."
VS System 2PCG: S.H.I.E.L.D. vs Hydra the last small-box expansion / first giant-sized issue, will release at the end of the month (see “'VS System 2PCG' Adds 'S.H.I.E.L.D. Vs Hydra' Expansion”).