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Thoughts on SW: Legions?

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23 Jan 2018 12:17 - 23 Jan 2018 12:23 #261845 by charlest
Replied by charlest on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?

Colorcrayons wrote: The difference between gw and ffg is quite simply models.

Gw went on record long ago stating that they are a model company that happens to make rules to use their models.

So even if you don't play thier games (which were, quite frankly, largely horrible designs) you could still surround yourself in nice models that gw photographic marketing leads you to believe will look just as good on your shelf.

Ffg doesn't enjoy this same retreat for their minis games.


Sure, definitely true (regarding model quality, don't agree about their design quality). But it seems the majority of discussion was FFG supporting their games and not trusting them due to product not being supported (which I agree, is true at times). If quality is a major talking point we need to talk about price as well then.



Nate - is that really true though? X-Wing is clearly FFG's main line and I don't think they expected Armada to compete with it. The Armada starter was priced at a point they knew it would be more niche. It's also a much longer game. I think they knew how well it would do and it's probably right where it should be.

I'd also be very surprised if they expected Runewars to take off like X-Wing. It's probably performed weaker than they expected, but I don't know if that's a huge blow or if they went "all-in" or anything.

To me, FFG's main line is clearly X-Wing and Imperial Assault. Netrunner and Arkham LCG now would be the tier down. I think they'd like Legion to be elevated to their main tier. I never saw Battlelore 2E as being one of their few core products. I'd compare it to more of a specialist games line from FFG. Same with Mutant Chronicles and Cadwallon, I don't remember those being marketed extremely hard or positioned on their website or printed advertising materials as a main product.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:23 by charlest.

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23 Jan 2018 12:19 - 23 Jan 2018 12:23 #261847 by Mr. White
Replied by Mr. White on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?
Nah, GW's new designs are quite good.

I can speak to AoS and it is leagues better than WFB was. Shadespire and Gorechosen are smashes to play. Necromunda offers an out-of-the box experience as well as 3d play. And to wisely round it out, GW pretty much kept Space Hulk and Blood Bowl as is as they were already close to perfection.

Nu-GW knows what it's doing.

www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/01/10/...tailer-battles-back/
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:23 by Mr. White.
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23 Jan 2018 12:27 - 23 Jan 2018 12:27 #261849 by Sagrilarus
Replied by Sagrilarus on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?

charlest wrote: Nate - is that really true though? X-Wing is clearly FFG's main line and I don't think they expected Armada to compete with it. The Armada starter was priced at a point they knew it would be more niche. It's also a much longer game. I think they knew how well it would do and it's probably right where it should be.


Oh, come on. They hoped and prayed that Armada would kick X-Wing's ass and wanted it to be their most successful product ever. Businessmen don't release products hoping for breakeven. They want a barn-burner.


charlest wrote: To me, FFG's main line is clearly X-Wing and Imperial Assault.


That's because those caught fire. X-Wing would have been rolled up in a weekend if it hadn't gotten footing with the starter kit. I'm sure FFG is very happy to have those two be standard bearers and very profitable, but they'd love to have every other game they publish right up there with them or bigger. They just aren't. We get to decide that, not FFG. They spend their time trying to figure out what the hell we want, and we're a fickle bunch.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:27 by Sagrilarus.

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23 Jan 2018 12:30 - 23 Jan 2018 12:31 #261850 by charlest
Replied by charlest on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?

Sagrilarus wrote:

charlest wrote: Nate - is that really true though? X-Wing is clearly FFG's main line and I don't think they expected Armada to compete with it. The Armada starter was priced at a point they knew it would be more niche. It's also a much longer game. I think they knew how well it would do and it's probably right where it should be.


Oh, come on. They hoped and prayed that Armada would kick X-Wing's ass and wanted it to be their most successful product ever. Businessmen don't release products hoping for breakeven. They want a barn-burner.


charlest wrote: To me, FFG's main line is clearly X-Wing and Imperial Assault.


That's because those caught fire. X-Wing would have been rolled up in a weekend if it hadn't gotten footing with the starter kit. I'm sure FFG is very happy to have those two be standard bearers and very profitable, but they'd love to have every other game they publish right up there with them or bigger. They just aren't. We get to decide that, not FFG. They spend their time trying to figure out what the hell we want, and we're a fickle bunch.


All I'm saying is that they probably didn't forecast sales of Armada at the level they would of X-Wing. I'm not saying they wanted to break even. Nate mentioned that nothing GW releases is expected to sell as well as AoS or 40K and I'm saying that's true of FFG's output as well.

The main point I'm trying to make is that it seems unfair to writeoff GW's lack of support of product while criticizing FFG over it.

For the record, I'm a bigger GW fan than FFG fan when it comes to miniatures games and Shadespire was my 2017 GOTY.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:31 by charlest.
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23 Jan 2018 12:38 - 23 Jan 2018 12:45 #261851 by Colorcrayons
We may be fickle, but in this day and age where you can find very good table top war game designs everywhere, you have to know what you're doing.

Throwing shit against a wall to see what sticks, only results in a wall covered in shit.

Osprey isn't known for their wargame designs, yet they saw Frostgrave and decided that was the team they would back. They didn't toss a dozen designs out there to see what would stick.

The result is a game that gives anything gw has ever made a good run for it's money.

We now have confidence and an expectation that if Osprey we're to release another game, that it could be another winner.

I don't believe ffg has that same luxury.

[Edit]
I don't believe GW has that luxury either, especially when sunk cost theory enters into the evaluation. But again, GW has it's models to fall back on.
Ffg are relying on the SW IP to carry and strengthen it's sales.

But gw, as Mr White has pointed out is doing much better. With actions.

We see just more of the same from ffg and we are expected to buy into it with our collected eroded confidence.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:45 by Colorcrayons.
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23 Jan 2018 12:53 - 23 Jan 2018 12:55 #261853 by bfkiller
Replied by bfkiller on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?
I played and loved the Runewars Miniatures Game. It was probably my favourite new game of last year. Huge disclaimer, though: it was the first true minis game I'd ever tried. Perhaps I was more impressed by the hobby in the global sense than I was with that particular rules system? Either way, I dug what FFG did with it so would be willing to give Legions a try. (Though, when it comes to Star Wars and miniatures, space pew-pew is much more intriguing to me than ground pew-pew.)
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 12:55 by bfkiller.
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23 Jan 2018 13:08 - 23 Jan 2018 13:11 #261856 by charlest
Replied by charlest on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?

Colorcrayons wrote: We may be fickle, but in this day and age where you can find very good table top war game designs everywhere, you have to know what you're doing.

Throwing shit against a wall to see what sticks, only results in a wall covered in shit.

Osprey isn't known for their wargame designs, yet they saw Frostgrave and decided that was the team they would back. They didn't toss a dozen designs out there to see what would stick.

The result is a game that gives anything gw has ever made a good run for it's money.

We now have confidence and an expectation that if Osprey we're to release another game, that it could be another winner.

I don't believe ffg has that same luxury.

[Edit]
I don't believe GW has that luxury either, especially when sunk cost theory enters into the evaluation. But again, GW has it's models to fall back on.
Ffg are relying on the SW IP to carry and strengthen it's sales.

But gw, as Mr White has pointed out is doing much better. With actions.

We see just more of the same from ffg and we are expected to buy into it with our collected eroded confidence.


What? Osprey has been pumping out books that haven't taken off for years. You can currently buy 36 different rulebooks from them (this is counting the entirety of Bolt Action and Frostgrave as a single book each) and that's only what's available now. I played their release of Tomorrow's War years ago when it came out, and while it was a nice update to Star Grunt, it was overly complicated and had a very unwieldy rulebook. I would like to try Frostgrave though (it looks great) and do enjoy Scrappers. Plus, Zoo Ball was one of the best games of 2017 folks.

Osprey has been into wargaming for many years.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 13:11 by charlest.

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23 Jan 2018 13:21 - 23 Jan 2018 13:23 #261858 by Colorcrayons
Shows how much I pay attention then.

I thought they only produced resource and reference books on armies, in an Audubon fashion. I never saw anything else for sale in game shops besides those.

Mea culpa.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 13:23 by Colorcrayons.

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23 Jan 2018 13:57 - 23 Jan 2018 14:08 #261862 by Mr. White
Replied by Mr. White on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?
In the 90s through to the mid 00s I was a steady GW Specialist Games (SG) gamer. Blood Bowl, Man O War, WHQ, Necromunda, Mordheim, etc. I stayed pretty well clear of the big 2 (40K and Warhammer Fantasy). _However_ we would mine the minis from those games for the SG titles. At the time I would bemoan GW's lack of support of their SG titles.

Turns out...I was wrong.

Steady, solid focus on fewer lines allowed for better growth, penetration, and branding in the marketplace. Letting the SG titles slough off to hobbyists was the right call. Hobbyists had the rules and the creativity to continue the games on our dining room tables.

The industry is littered with companies such as Mantic, Spartan, maybe FFG, who flood the market with titles in a 'Fire and Forget' manner. They don't seem to have legs. I'm not saying that GWs games are 'best to play', but they for sure provide a better overall package as a lifestyle game. And that's the thing...you can have faith 40K and some flavour of GW fantasy will be around. When I buy a box of Dire Wolves...I'm not worried about a license expiring or support drying up.

Less is more.

"The stock surged 269 per cent last year, the best performance of any stock on the FTSE All Share index by a wide margin."
www.ft.com/content/6b8a147f-33cd-33fd-a3a4-bc62bb3ed5b4
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 14:08 by Mr. White.
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23 Jan 2018 16:04 #261878 by Michael Barnes
When it comes down to it, FFG has soured their reputation and this was done years ago between piles of extraneous expansions, quite a lot of DOA titles, ne'er-do-well licenses, and games with support that just dries up because they've flooded the market with repetitive and redundant product. I think the first time I felt like they were shitting the bed was Mutant Chronicles. Maybe even World of Warcraft. Remember when we ALL thought FFG could do no wrong? Man, there was a period- around the time they did Talisman and Cosmic (not their designs, significantly)- where they were THE king shit of the gaming world. They were the LEADERS. Now...they are an Asmodee footnote that occasionally releases something of note.

I was thinking last night that it is interesting, the only real success they've had in terms of creating a proprietary game world is...Arkham Horror. NONE of their other attempts have managed to work. The Android world, who cares about Bio-blob or Haas-Googatech or whatever. Terrinoth...well, there you go. But Arkham Horror has a distinct sense of setting and even characters. The whole Lovecraft-inspired pulp adventure concept...they have that pretty much locked up. Thanks to Richard Launius and Kevin Wilson, who, notably, are not FFG employees.

I think Petersen really wants to be like GW, but what he doesn't get is that part of what makes GW so successful is that they really just sell TWO games. Sure, there are standalone releases and occasionally other lines that intersect those two games, but they don't do something totally fucking stupid like release ANOTHER miniatures game in ANOTHER setting with ANOTHER rules system. You buy Gorechosen, it's Mortal Realms and it's the same miniatures that you use in AoS. It's coherent, cohesive, and the products support each other. FFG will just shit out another complete game system with a big froo-fra about a whole product line, throw their hands up when it doesn't sell, and boom- Christmas sale it is then. AND they make the mistake of continually trying to duplicate success rather than look for NEW successes. I almost think that the games they get right- like Fallout and Destiny- almost happen IN SPITE of the leadership and marketing strategies there.

OMG that GOT Battlelore. I think that is the biggest fumble in the history of board games to be honest. Remember all of the EXCITEMENT about the mystery new release? And it was...that. An unasked for, unwanted reimplementation of game that wasn't exactly sales dynamite to begin with...and that had a few EXACT ANALOGUES (Memoir '44 and C&C: Ancients, not to mention WHFB and other medieval miniatures systems) on the market already. I posted a dismissive comment in these very forums (I believe I said "I don't even want a review copy of that one) and Mr. Petersen himself had me removed from the FFG press list for the second time- he did it previously when I wrote that article about Descent's declining appeal.

But here is where it gets really funny. At that time, I had done this HUGE interview with him, at his suggestion BTW, and his marketing people killed it. Which is probably for the best for him, and I also agreed that it was not really the right direction for me either because I think they expected it to be more of a puff piece than what I was willing to do. I wanted it to be more challenging, they wanted a fan piece or something like that. So he called me (while I was at Frank Branham's Swamp Castle, funny enough) to tell me that the interview was axed. But he wanted to "reward" me for the work so he offered quite literally the first copy of Battle of Westeros they had gotten in for a review. So I took that, and gave it a pretty middling review because the game was not very good- it made the Battlelore system needlessly more complicated, and the concept didn't match up well with GoT at all. And that was the last I heard from Petersen or FFG at all. No contact since then, and I don't even bother to ask for review copies from them because I felt, at that point, that my place on the press list was secured by providing positive reviews and that is a compromise I was not willing to make. They are, of course, well within rights to establish whatever criteria they want for what they expect from reviewers they comp.

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23 Jan 2018 18:02 #261897 by Sevej
Replied by Sevej on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?
Much simpler for me. Do I want to paint only black, white, and shades of tan and browns all the time?

No thank you.

Huge part of minis gaming is you army is yours. SWL, at the moment, doesn't provide that.

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23 Jan 2018 19:11 #261904 by BillyBobThwarton
Count me in the group that could care less about playing Legion. I'll probably stop to marvel at someone's game when laid out somewhere, but I just don't have the life for something like that.

Regarding FFG as a company, I'm sure that at 4 am it's time to make the donuts just like everywhere else. I understand where we are coming from with seeing some product lines come and go, but I am happy that they continue to churn at it in their way. I really enjoy their art design, and of the many games that I would love to play (but don't have time to) many of them are FFG. We are living in peak Star Wars and they have a license. At the very least, their ads in the Star Wars comics for their Star Wars games are better than the Star Wars stories I've been trudging through.

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23 Jan 2018 20:19 - 23 Jan 2018 20:42 #261905 by Jackwraith
Replied by Jackwraith on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?
Well, Twilight Imperium is a proprietary game world and the first game the company ever produced, incidentally. Given the massive success of all four editions of the game, I'd say they did pretty well, even if the reskin of Dune in the same universe didn't go over so well. Of course, that may also be because Dune itself, heralded as it may be by long-timers in the hobby, simply isn't interesting anymore to all of the people who've gotten interested in this century. When I tried Rex with my group three times, people didn't object to the setting, but to the game.

OTOH, I don't know that I'd refer to the setting of Arkham Horror as an FFG proprietary world. After all, the setting was created by Lovecraft and his contemporaries and, IIRC, they still license the setting from Chaosium. So, it's not really FFG at all. Now you can discard Terrinoth and TI as invalid for some reason, but Terrinoth has been used as the setting for games that have sold really well and which a lot of people around here really like (Runebound, Runewars, Rune Age, Descent, Descent 2nd Ed., Runebound 2nd Ed.) and have spoken of highly over the years. I know it's fashionable to bash FFG for not being what they once were and/or for the absolute glut of Star Wars product, but that's a style complaint, not one about their capabilities as designers. I don't buy much from them anymore but I am far from a Star Wars fan. That said, I loved playing X-Wing for a while. I stay away from collectible card games (be they CCGs or LCGs), but I LOVED Netrunner and Call of Cthulhu when I was playing them and have been sorely tempted by the L5R and Arkham games.

And, in the end, I don't know that creating a great setting is a necessary point for a game designer, is it? How many Knizia games had themes pasted on to brilliant mechanics? Nobody gave a shit that T&E or Ra or Modern Art or Samurai or Blue Moon or even Lord of the Rings barely had any connection between game and setting. Is Knizia a failure for having been unable to come up with a backdrop for one game that could be pasted on all of his other designs? Coming from the other side, does anyone care that FFG didn't invent TIE Fighters and Y-Wings? Or do they care that FFG made one of the best space combat games ever in X-Wing? Does anyone care that FFG didn't invent Tzeentch and Khorne? Or do they care that FFG released one of the definitive games of the first decade of this century in Chaos in the Old World?

I find the hold that nostalgia has on much of the gaming community kind of fascinating, in that what a company has done in the past somehow becomes less because of what they're doing now. Or how a game that is re-released but not precisely like the older version is somehow an utter disaster, even when complaining about the shitty mechanics (GW games too numerous to count...) is part of the pastime of saying how wonderful they supposedly are. FFG cleaned up Talisman and added the Luck attribute; by all accounts an improvement, even if not a huge one. FFG released Merchant of Venus, not only with the old ruleset for fans of the original, but with a completely separate one for people to try, as well. But those genuine accomplishments were mournfully criticized at the time, despite there being no impediments to playing either game the old way, one of them even providing the rules and counters to do just that. And now because they haven't invented a lasting world (other than TI and Terrinoth, the latter of which, again, has been the setting for multiple successful games, including what many regard as the definitive dungeon crawler), they're somehow a shell of their former self? Color me doubtful.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 20:42 by Jackwraith.
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23 Jan 2018 22:21 - 23 Jan 2018 22:24 #261908 by Da Bid Dabid
There is some damn fine discussion in this thread... glad I clicked in despite not really caring about SW: Legion.

Quick thoughts.

Man I wish I could get people to pay more attention to the smaller tabletop games companies rules. Just like Crayons, most people have no idea they even exist - even people balls deep in tabletop wargame products from the BIG companies. In my experience if its not one of these main lines you can maybe get one or two other people interested and that usually results in a one off game or two and then back to the safety of the rule set that everyone else plays. I'm sure people into CCGs feel that way about Magic hogging all the players other than their niche group. Damn it I want to play SAGA, Dracula's America, Rogue Planet, and Fistful of Kung Fu. It's a lot more fun when other people are building forces to battle you, not just you providing both sides. Even the smaller games with backing from GW like Blood Bowl, Necro, Shadow War, etc. seem to have a tough time maintaining any momentum.

New Warhammer 40k is a lot like old 40k. I don't find it to be this great new redesign that makes it so much better. At the core its still lots of dice rolls and all about deployment. I'm finding it fun, but I did when I played in 3rd edition too. Is GW really WAY more successful than FFG? Like I doubt either of these companies hold the other on some pedestal or a goal they are trying to reach. They both are making their cash doing their thing.

FFG has a ridiculously awesome catalog of games. Sure they are not all winners, to expect that from any company is unreasonable. I wouldn't trade my TI: 3rd or 4th edition experiences for 50 CMON Blood Rages (A game I actually also like). Also their partnership with GW gave us some incredible games that I don't think we would've seen otherwise. I don't fault them for banking on SW. If you don't dig their stuff thats fine, but what they are doing even now with SW, LCGs in general, Legend of the 5 Rings, and Genesys is pretty incredible and those are just the projects I have a little interest in. I admit I haven't purchased any of the aforementioned things but I find it impressive. The only company that comes close to putting out games that grab my interest like that is Gale Force 9, recently they too haven't been hitting all grand slams, but I sure as shit keep my ear to the ground to hear what they are planning next.

I don't see any of these companies being soured or reborn as much as discussion sometimes leads us to believe.

EDIT: I forgot to mention Jackwraith your friends who don't like the Dune mechanics are idiots. ;)
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 22:24 by Da Bid Dabid. Reason: idiots
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23 Jan 2018 23:10 - 23 Jan 2018 23:12 #261911 by Jackwraith
Replied by Jackwraith on topic Thoughts on SW: Legions?

Da Bid Dabid wrote: EDIT: I forgot to mention Jackwraith your friends who don't like the Dune mechanics are idiots. ;)


Whether they liked the mechanics or not isn't the issue. The point is that they didn't like the game and/or were far more interested in playing something else than Dune. I can't begrudge them that, anymore than I can begrudge my girlfriend's passion for Power Grid when I really don't enjoy it. This same group that didn't like Rex/Dune is split between players who loved Twilight Imperium 3 and those who detested it. Who's "right" there?

You said you had fun playing 3rd Ed. 40K. I thought it sucked compared to 2nd, 3,5, and 4. They cleared up the panoply of rules from 2nd, but they drained the game of all of its color and made Chaos into a walking joke until the new codex that basically introduced 3.5 and made all of the units that no one would touch, like Obliterators and Possessed, actually functional. Remember Terminators at the start of 3rd when they basically disappeared from the table because of the proliferation of plasma? World famous game designer Jervis Johnson's response: "Learn how to use them better!" Then, when sales of the models tanked, he said: "Oh. Well. How about a 5+I save?" "But, wait!", we all said. "Aren't the rules already perfect?" Of course not. The only really positive thing about 3rd Ed. was the introduction of the Dark Eldar. I learned to use them to devastating effect when everyone in my area thought they were a complete waste of time. And half the codex WAS a complete waste of time. We sorted out the upgrades to all of the Wych units with the studio on their message board. But if you believe that the rules are great as released, as with debacles like Dungeonquest (a game I know that we significantly disagree over), then you'd end up believing that DE were either useless or monochromatic (i.e. only as good as the number of Dark Lances you could stuff in an army. Monochromatic? Dark Lances are black? Get it? Never mind.)

But all of that said, I loved 40K and played it and every minis game that GW ever produced. I'm out of collectible games and have no impetus to paint any longer. But even if I were still into it, I'd have to say that I disagree with their current stance that super-huge models are the be-all and end-all of the game. But that doesn't mean I think that anything they did in the past is the "golden era" that makes their current output so inferior because, man, there were a LOT of fucking mistakes in the past.

I also don't think Dune is one of the greatest games of all time. I think it's a great game, but there are many others that I would play before it. Consequently, I don't think anyone's preference of game makes them an idiot or a genius, quite honestly.
Last edit: 23 Jan 2018 23:12 by Jackwraith.
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