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Subject: The biggest disappointment in my gaming life... rss

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Giles Pritchard
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I'd love to see a clever use of the deployment card system from Call to Arms and the Specialist cards in a campaign system. With specific adventures or objectives adding items, more cards to the deck, etc.

More 'adventure' style scenarios would be cool as well. A 'choose your own adventure' element to objectives within a series of scenarios would be a lot of fun.

I would love to see an overarching story developed through a rigged set of call to arms deployment and specialist cards, that cause the army mix to change and fluctuate based off in-game occurances. There could be a series of these 'campaign' packs developed and sold.

Of course I'd love to see more races, race specific heroes, creatures, etc. I'd also love to see Fantasy Vehicles, siege engines, cannons etc.

I'd love to see some setting development.

There are many things I'd love to see from Battlelore. Hopefully we'll see some we expect, some we want, and some that surprise us!

Cheers,

Giles.

Edit: oh, and a race specific or army specific Command deck for each player would be very cool.
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Truth be told, I think the only thing we are "missing" is the Campaign rules. Once we have that, I think we have the entire foundation of the system: basic, epic, army deployment, heroes, creatures, campaigns, and army model.
If the campaign comes with loads of map like the M44 book, it's cool. Otherwise, I'd like an official custom map creator system.
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brian
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Sevej wrote:
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Truth be told, I think the only thing we are "missing" is the Campaign rules. Once we have that, I think we have the entire foundation of the system: basic, epic, army deployment, heroes, creatures, campaigns, and army model.
If the campaign comes with loads of map like the M44 book, it's cool. Otherwise, I'd like an official custom map creator system.
Do you mean like the computerized version that DOW had? FFG didn't get that in the deal and I am not sure how much they are going to invest in something like that.

But if you mean a random terrain generator similar to how Call to Arms puts armies on the board, I think that would be a good idea to give you endless scenarios to attempt.
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Geoff H
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
FFG didn't get that in the deal and I am not sure how much they are going to invest in something like that.
This is exactly my point. If they really cared about BattleLore, there would be a scenario generator for it. They have one for Tide of Iron, so how hard would it be to adapt it?

Geoff
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brian
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gheintze wrote:
ColtsFan76 wrote:
FFG didn't get that in the deal and I am not sure how much they are going to invest in something like that.
This is exactly my point. If they really cared about BattleLore, there would be a scenario generator for it. They have one for Tide of Iron, so how hard would it be to adapt it?

Geoff
I wasn't aware of that (I sometimes have blinders to only the games I have an interest in). If they have a ToI generator, then it should be easy to convert to BattleLore, I would think.
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Geoff H
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
(I sometimes have blinders to only the games I have an interest in).
You and me both.

Geoff
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I have been following the discussion on this thread. I apologize for the tangent, but can someone expound on the following:

ColtsFan76 wrote:
Delivered on only the Troll in a piss-poor marketing move that destroyed the essence of the brand and received such a backlash that they ditched the line within a week.
There were several mentions of the Troll earlier, I believe "fiasco" was used to describe it as well.

I only got the core set this past Christmas, and am finding the history of DoW's "mishandling" fairly fascinating.

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Do you mean like the computerized version that DOW had? FFG didn't get that in the deal and I am not sure how much they are going to invest in something like that.
Umm, no. I'd love to have some call-to-arms style battlefield creator. Or failing that, give me a map of Uchronia and dozens of battlefields that exist there. I can even play campaigns off it.
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Geoff H
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dfed22 wrote:
I have been following the discussion on this thread. I apologize for the tangent, but can someone expound on the following:

ColtsFan76 wrote:
Delivered on only the Troll in a piss-poor marketing move that destroyed the essence of the brand and received such a backlash that they ditched the line within a week.
There were several mentions of the Troll earlier, I believe "fiasco" was used to describe it as well.

I only got the core set this past Christmas, and am finding the history of DoW's "mishandling" fairly fascinating.

When BattleLore was released, there was promise of a campaign style game that specifically mentioned Heroes. They were also supposed to release the expansion armies in small blister packs.

Apparently there was some backlash against the blister packs from retailers, so they went with the larger style expansions that you can get today. They released several of these packs for goblins, dwarves, and the 100 years war (historical version).

In addition, they also released an epic board (for bigger games) and Call to Arms so that you can play random adventures. These two expansions are often considered essential to BattleLore.

After this initial flood of expansions, the well dried up. Not only were there no more expansions forthcoming, but DoW was strangely silent about the future of BattleLore. As you might guess, the natives became restless and concerned -- where was heroes? are more creatures coming? complete goblin and dwarf armies? a campaign system? All of these were promised but there was no word from the publisher.

Finally after this long silence, DoW announced the release of Troll and Country, a BattleLore battlemap in epic format that would include a new Creature -- the Troll. However, it did not include the stone bridge tile or summary cards for the Troll. (As an aside, I should mention that a similar format has proven remarkable successful for Memoir '44).

In any case, the fanbase was extremely disappointed -- we expected Heroes, but received an expensive and seemingly incomplete minor expansion. This led to a maelstrom of discontent -- scathing open letters to DoW, arguments in the forum, and general chaos.

Within a week, BattleLore had been sold to FFG. Whether this was in the works or caused by the backlash, we'll never know. The rest is history...

Disclaimer: this recollection of the events may be inaccurate in some or even all of the facts. It's been a long time and I wrote this off the top of my head without doing a shred of research. Please flame me by geekmail instead of in the forum.

Geoff

Edit for random typos.
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brian
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I think your recollection is mostly accurate. Of course, it has been so long my memory isn't going to be able to point out any inconsistencies (and I don't really want to pull out old threads to start those debates again).

I will just add what I meant about my comment on the Troll. Not only was the fanbase disappointed that the Troll was all that was announced after so many months of silence but the production value of the set was sub-par.

1) One of the core strengths of the C&C system is a plain board with variable hexes. This concept lets you play limitless scenarios on a base game. Moving towards a pre-printed map seemed contrary to everything that the system stood for. They made it work slightly better with Memoir but it still left a bitter taste in my mouth even there.

2) Though it came with a Creature, they didn't include the actual cards opting to print them on the map itself. While this wasn't necessarily bad, it did make it very difficult to use the Troll in other scenarios because you would need to pull out this huge map just to read what it did.

3) The again made a creature more expensive than it needed to be by forcing you to pay $15-$18 to get it.

4) The glued the flag into the creature. So first off this meant you could never customize it by making it a green or red banner unit but more importantly, with the shoddy packaging, it meant most of them were snapped off never to be used again.

All around, a horrible idea that cheapened the line and served as the final nail in DOW's BL coffin. So that is what I meant specifically by my comment above.
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Geoff H
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
I think your recollection is mostly accurate. Of course, it has been so long my memory isn't going to be able to point out any inconsistencies (and I don't really want to pull out old threads to start those debates again).

I will just add what I meant about my comment on the Troll. Not only was the fanbase disappointed that the Troll was all that was announced after so many months of silence but the production value of the set was sub-par.

1) One of the core strengths of the C&C system is a plain board with variable hexes. This concept lets you play limitless scenarios on a base game. Moving towards a pre-printed map seemed contrary to everything that the system stood for. They made it work slightly better with Memoir but it still left a bitter taste in my mouth even there.

2) Though it came with a Creature, they didn't include the actual cards opting to print them on the map itself. While this wasn't necessarily bad, it did make it very difficult to use the Troll in other scenarios because you would need to pull out this huge map just to read what it did.

3) The again made a creature more expensive than it needed to be by forcing you to pay $15-$18 to get it.

4) The glued the flag into the creature. So first off this meant you could never customize it by making it a green or red banner unit but more importantly, with the shoddy packaging, it meant most of them were snapped off never to be used again.

All around, a horrible idea that cheapened the line and served as the final nail in DOW's BL coffin. So that is what I meant specifically by my comment above.
I concur with your assessment of the Troll expansion (especially the glued in flagpole -- I could have saved that glue for my Horrific Horde and Battle of Westeros sets whistle ). It was very disappointing. However, I still can't figure out why it was such a bust with BattleLore, but OK with Memoir fans. Different fan bases I guess...

I still think it's a shame that DoW couldn't make BattleLore work. I've been pretty happy with their handling of Memoir '44 and wish they could have done the same with BattleLore. But if I recall correctly, the effort it took to "support" BattleLore was having deleterious effects on Memoir '44 as well. Weren't the Memoir fans upset that nothing had come out for that game either? IIRC, then they announced the Air Pack and Hedgerow Hell at about the same time as Troll and Country. Perhaps the Air Pack took the sting out of Hedgerow Hell and Heroes could have done the same for Troll and Country if it had been released (or announced) at the same time.

Hopefully, FFG will step up to the plate soon. Maybe Brian knows something we don't...ninja, and we should just trust him.

Geoff
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brian
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gheintze wrote:
I concur with your assessment of the Troll expansion (especially the glued in flagpole -- I could have saved that glue for my Horrific Horde and Battle of Westeros sets whistle ). It was very disappointing. However, I still can't figure out why it was such a bust with BattleLore, but OK with Memoir fans. Different fan bases I guess...
I went back and re-read some of the threads. I think the bust with BL was things had been silent nearly a year and then this was all we got out of it. At least with Memoir, Air Pack had just been released and there was still some support with scenarios. More importantly, M44 was a COMPLETE game where as BL never had its foundation set since Heroes had been promised and not delivered at that point.

Quote:
I still think it's a shame that DoW couldn't make BattleLore work. I've been pretty happy with their handling of Memoir '44 and wish they could have done the same with BattleLore. But if I recall correctly, the effort it took to "support" BattleLore was having deleterious effects on Memoir '44 as well. Weren't the Memoir fans upset that nothing had come out for that game either? IIRC, then they announced the Air Pack and Hedgerow Hell at about the same time as Troll and Country. Perhaps the Air Pack took the sting out of Hedgerow Hell and Heroes could have done the same for Troll and Country if it had been released (or announced) at the same time.
Yeah, M44 fans were mad because they felt all the time was being spent on BL, but BL had nothing to show for it so were mad there as well. Air Pack had come out a bit earlier than that announcement. What was announce with Hedgerow Hill was the Overlord expansion which offered more than the print-in-play rules we had before. So there at least had some direction. If Heroes had been released at the same time as the Air Pack, this would probably still be a DOW product. So I agree with your assessment.

Quote:
Hopefully, FFG will step up to the plate soon. Maybe Brian knows something we don't...ninja, and we should just trust him.
Trust me, I don't know anything. I'd love to give you a wink wink but everything is from my own perspective. I continue to try to get a toe in the BL war room.
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Thanks for the DoW history. What a tragedy really. I had gathered there was quite a bit of discontent towards the direction of the expansions from reading on here the past couple years, but never realized the extent of the campaign/heroes/blister pack details you mentioned. I am just curious, were those thing explictly mentioned by DoW, or desires that grew from the fanbase?

I am coming into BattleLore post DoW, so I don't have the scarring that many of you do. While a business can pull the plug on something at any time, it appears to me that FF is supporting the game. While it may not be their #1 priority, that does not mean it is left for dead. I don't think it is black and white. Not to rehash what others have said, but the release of the goblin and then dwarf armies appear to be part of the solution to the new core set. The printing of the core set is the key to the future, and seeing that the current releases appear to be in line with a solution can only be seen as good news to me.
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
I went back and re-read some of the threads. I think the bust with BL was things had been silent nearly a year and then this was all we got out of it. At least with Memoir, Air Pack had just been released and there was still some support with scenarios. More importantly, M44 was a COMPLETE game where as BL never had its foundation set since Heroes had been promised and not delivered at that point.

Yeah, M44 fans were mad because they felt all the time was being spent on BL, but BL had nothing to show for it so were mad there as well. Air Pack had come out a bit earlier than that announcement. What was announce with Hedgerow Hill was the Overlord expansion which offered more than the print-in-play rules we had before. So there at least had some direction. If Heroes had been released at the same time as the Air Pack, this would probably still be a DOW product. So I agree with your assessment.
And those of us that were/are fans of both were totally screwed.

My only real discontent with M'44 is Operation:Overlord. I'm never going to use those counters, I can't imagine how they would look with figures.yuk And I still wish they would sell the Airplane figures separately for Overlord games. (I just sucked it up and bought a 2nd Air Pack, but I'd like one more set just in case.)

I still really want BattleLore to be my favorite game. I can still remember the excitement when it was coming out -- Memoir '44 with my favorite theme, fantasy! Unbelievable! And a campaign system and a fleshed out campaign world...Can it be real? Can this still happen???

Please, Fantasy Flight, tell me that it will.

Geoff

Edit: I forgot to answer the question. Yes, those things were mentioned by DoW in the runup to its release. The change of plans and subsequent discontent has led to DoW's current policy of not announcing future plans until the game is at the printer.
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Yeah, we were double screwed by DOW back in the day.

Actually, the reason why DOW went mum was because of the Air Pack. The Carry case was supposed to be this grand carry case with airplanes. But then they couldn't get the carry case concept to work and missed their self-announced release date. Then they ended up scrapping the carry case and split out the Air Pack as a separate expansion and ended up with a canvas carry case.

Since they got such a backlash on that one (which really wasn't that bad in comparison to others), they went radio silence on everything elkse from that point forward. Wouldn't commit to anything. And so that is why they chose to say nothing on BattleLore.

I begged Erik and Mark their Marketing guy to say something but they thought they knew best. Oh well.

But yeah, a lot of what was outlined by DOW never came to be - monthly blister packs, heroes, creatures, etc.
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It's actually kind of amazing when you look at Days of Wonder and Fantasy Flight side by side over the last five years. I say that because I remember there was a big thread about 5 years ago with people comparing DoW and FF. At the time DoW was on a major roll with Memoir '44, Battlelore and Shadows over Camelot. Fantasy Flight had Arkham Horror, Doom and Descent. In 2005 they both were just coming into their own.

At that point however they went two different directions. Fantasy Flight took off and in the last five years has grown into perhaps the top publisher in the hobby. For DoW however the wheels came off. The last five years they've seemed to lack a consistent vision with any of their game series.
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mrbeankc wrote:
It's actually kind of amazing when you look at Days of Wonder and Fantasy Flight side by side over the last five years. I say that because I remember there was a big thread about 5 years ago with people comparing DoW and FF. At the time DoW was on a major roll with Memoir '44, Battlelore and Shadows over Camelot. Fantasy Flight had Arkham Horror, Doom and Descent. In 2005 they both were just coming into their own.

At that point however they went two different directions. Fantasy Flight took off and in the last five years has grown into perhaps the top publisher in the hobby. For DoW however the wheels came off. The last five years they've seemed to lack a consistent vision with any of their game series.
I couln't agree more. FFG is getting bigger and better while DOW has been on the decline. I wonder if in another 5 years we will be talking about DOW in the past tense completely.
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That would be a shame as I really like a lot of DOWs games as well.

Does anyone here speak German?
http://www.worldofbattlelore.de/index.php?option=com_docman&...

That looks like a really nicely done fan supplement for the Undead. The link takes you to World of Battlelore, which is a fantastic German fansite for Battlelore. Makes me wish I could speak German!

I'd love to know what models they've used and what the rules actually say as it looks very professionally done.

Cheers,
Ben.
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I think Days of Wonder might be going in a NEW direction. Anyone play Small World for IPad? It's really cool and addicting!
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mrbeankc wrote:
It's actually kind of amazing when you look at Days of Wonder and Fantasy Flight side by side over the last five years. I say that because I remember there was a big thread about 5 years ago with people comparing DoW and FF. At the time DoW was on a major roll with Memoir '44, Battlelore and Shadows over Camelot. Fantasy Flight had Arkham Horror, Doom and Descent. In 2005 they both were just coming into their own.

At that point however they went two different directions. Fantasy Flight took off and in the last five years has grown into perhaps the top publisher in the hobby. For DoW however the wheels came off. The last five years they've seemed to lack a consistent vision with any of their game series.
I see the companies as two completely different entities. DoW has always been a "family" game company. Their gamer's games are lighter so that families can play them. I think that gamer's may say "the wheels came off", but people on the street (and families) will probably identify more with Dow games (Wits and Wagers, Pirate's Cove, for example).

FFG is a much bigger company. They've been involved in CCGs, RPGs, LPGs, as well as board games. They've always had grittier more complicated board games. For example, the difference between Tide of Iron and Memoir '44. Just look at FFGs back catalog -- they have produced at least 5x more games than DoW.

It seems to me that games like Memoir '44 and BattleLore are the exception rather than the rule at Days of Wonder. And as mentioned in the previous post, DoW seems to be concentrating equally on electronic versions of their games.

Geoff
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I think DOW was headed in the direction of a bigger leader in the industry. The wheels haven't really fallen off but they have the appearance of contracting their presence. Small World was a hit and will probably see more expansions, but that has been the exception most recently.

BTW, Wits & Wagers is from NorthStar Games so not many will associate DOW with that title. DOW just acquired the rights to distribute it worldwide in different languages and as Gambit 7.
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You mean you guys don't think Fictionaire will be as compelling as BattleLore...?
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Harrelson wrote:
You mean you guys don't think Fictionaire will be as compelling as BattleLore...?
And seeing how it was sitting unplayed on a high small table in the middle of their booth every time I walked by at GenCon, not many might find it compelling....
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
Harrelson wrote:
You mean you guys don't think Fictionaire will be as compelling as BattleLore...?
And seeing how it was sitting unplayed on a high small table in the middle of their booth every time I walked by at GenCon, not many might find it compelling....
I don't know if gamers at GenCon are their audience for that one.

I think it's difficult to compare the companies. We can sit back and make assessments based off very little real information - but who knows - DoW may have a profit that doubles or triples FFGs. FFG have the huge line-up, but DoW have a few widely distributed big hits. FFG Has a large staff and tackles many game areas, DoW does not have to pay that many wages.

Who knows?

I don't think DoW was ever set up to be the style of company FFG is becoming though. But I'm not familiar with their plans!

Cheers,

Giles.
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Geoff H
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caradoc wrote:
ColtsFan76 wrote:
Harrelson wrote:
You mean you guys don't think Fictionaire will be as compelling as BattleLore...?
And seeing how it was sitting unplayed on a high small table in the middle of their booth every time I walked by at GenCon, not many might find it compelling....
I don't know if gamers at GenCon are their audience for that one.

I think it's difficult to compare the companies. We can sit back and make assessments based off very little real information - but who knows - DoW may have a profit that doubles or triples FFGs. FFG have the huge line-up, but DoW have a few widely distributed big hits. FFG Has a large staff and tackles many game areas, DoW does not have to pay that many wages.

Who knows?

I don't think DoW was ever set up to be the style of company FFG is becoming though. But I'm not familiar with their plans!

Cheers,

Giles.
I agree. You stated it much more clearly than I did.

Thanks!

Geoff
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