Corporate Agenda: Murder Netrunner

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11 Jun 2018 23:34 #275190 by AndrewMcAlpine

When bad things happen to good games.

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12 Jun 2018 09:43 #275191 by Legomancer
You're in Northampton? Where do you play games?

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12 Jun 2018 10:22 #275196 by Shellhead
Excellent writing. I've been a fan of the cyberpunk genre since reading Johnny Mnemonic in the early '80s in an issue of Omni magazine. I dabbled in the original Netrunner game, which was very playable right out of the starter deck. But it was a time of many CCGs, and I was having more fun with Vampire, Shadowfist, and Legend of the Burning Sands. I was glad that FFG brought back Netrunner, but by then I had seen too many card games come and go. As you mentioned in your article, new cards are crucial to the ongoing health of a game, and once there are no more new cards, most players lose interest. My game collection includes several cubic feet of cards for dead CCGs, including the original Netrunner.

I used to play the Cyberpunk RPG back in the '80s. The campaign setting was the backdrop for the original Netrunner CCG, and it was set in the year 2013. The second edition rules were set in 2020. One of these days, I should get out the old rulebooks and scenarios and see what they got right and wrong about 2013.
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12 Jun 2018 11:21 #275202 by Sagrilarus
Heroscape tournaments continue, though that's a much softer, more celebratory fare than Netrunner.

But here's my question -- FFG has lost the license. Does that me Netrunner is dead, or that some other company is going to continue it or restart it as Netrunner 2.0? All I've heard to date is that FFG will no longer publish it.

Given how vanilla the Android setting is I could see the game getting reset in a Blade Runner world or some other, and being published by the original rights holder with all new content. Just a thought, don't have any evidence either way.

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12 Jun 2018 12:52 #275208 by jpat
The fact that many of the eulogies I've read contain lines such as "I used to play" is suggestive that maybe there wasn't enough money in it, as the OP concedes, but FFG was clearly operating, it would seem, under the assumption that the license would be renewed, else why a new core set? If, on the other hand, WotC saw this game as successful, rebooting it after stripping out the FFG universe trappings seems likely to annoy people, especially those who may have just gotten into the FFG game on the promise of the revised core. So I don't know. This is a game I always wanted to try, but even though it's probably, if anything, easier now, I know I probably won't because it's a dead game.
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12 Jun 2018 13:42 #275212 by Michael Barnes
Netrunner’s perfect state was like, 15 years ago when the game was “dead” but kept alive and supported by enthusiasts with zero financial stake in it. Playing starter deck matches was so much more fun than anything FFG did with it. The worst thing they did, IMO, was to take it out of that quaint 1990s dystopian setting and shoehorn in all of their lame proprietary Android setting.
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12 Jun 2018 14:15 #275217 by Shellhead
The most edgy aspect of the Blandroid setting was the androgynous characters.

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12 Jun 2018 14:18 #275218 by charlest
I kind of enjoy how they featured Africa prominently as well as many minorities. Gave the setting a bit of a unique feel.
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12 Jun 2018 14:45 #275220 by Sagrilarus

jpat wrote: The fact that many of the eulogies I've read contain lines such as "I used to play" is suggestive that maybe there wasn't enough money in it, as the OP concedes, but FFG was clearly operating, it would seem, under the assumption that the license would be renewed, else why a new core set? If, on the other hand, WotC saw this game as successful, rebooting it after stripping out the FFG universe trappings seems likely to annoy people, especially those who may have just gotten into the FFG game on the promise of the revised core. So I don't know. This is a game I always wanted to try, but even though it's probably, if anything, easier now, I know I probably won't because it's a dead game.


I'm just saying that FFG losing the license doesn't mean the game is dead. WOTC may just keep running it, replacing Jinteki with Tyrell or Yoyodyne. Could even be backward compatible. Garfield may have other ideas. Don't know. Maybe not.

Why would you rescind a license for something you're not interested in publishing yourself? FFG was writing a check for it. Either they couldn't come to agreement on price, or WOTC wants it back. Don't know. FFG didn't announce discontinue, they announced they lost the license.

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12 Jun 2018 15:41 #275234 by ubarose

jpat wrote: The fact that many of the eulogies I've read contain lines such as "I used to play" is suggestive that maybe there wasn't enough money in it, as the OP concedes, but FFG was clearly operating, it would seem, under the assumption that the license would be renewed, else why a new core set? If, on the other hand, WotC saw this game as successful, rebooting it after stripping out the FFG universe trappings seems likely to annoy people, especially those who may have just gotten into the FFG game on the promise of the revised core. So I don't know. This is a game I always wanted to try, but even though it's probably, if anything, easier now, I know I probably won't because it's a dead game.


That’s a really good point about so many people saying “I used to play.”

I know nothing about Netrunner, but I think LCG need to be re-booted every few years to get new people interested. It’s too much work, and too overwhelming to get into a LCG after it’s been around for several years.
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12 Jun 2018 15:49 #275236 by Shellhead

ubarose wrote:

jpat wrote: The fact that many of the eulogies I've read contain lines such as "I used to play" is suggestive that maybe there wasn't enough money in it, as the OP concedes, but FFG was clearly operating, it would seem, under the assumption that the license would be renewed, else why a new core set? If, on the other hand, WotC saw this game as successful, rebooting it after stripping out the FFG universe trappings seems likely to annoy people, especially those who may have just gotten into the FFG game on the promise of the revised core. So I don't know. This is a game I always wanted to try, but even though it's probably, if anything, easier now, I know I probably won't because it's a dead game.


That’s a really good point about so many people saying “I used to play.”

I know nothing about Netrunner, but I think LCG need to be re-booted every few years to get new people interested. It’s too much work, and too overwhelming to get into a LCG after it’s been around for several years.


It's easier with a game like Magic where the primary skill is deck design, so you can quickly catch up by copying some good deck designs off the internet. Netrunner involves more skill, especially bluffing, and that isn't something that can be easily acquired online.

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12 Jun 2018 15:59 #275237 by Black Barney
i used to play this
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12 Jun 2018 16:32 #275241 by ubarose

Shellhead wrote:

ubarose wrote:

jpat wrote: The fact that many of the eulogies I've read contain lines such as "I used to play" is suggestive that maybe there wasn't enough money in it, as the OP concedes, but FFG was clearly operating, it would seem, under the assumption that the license would be renewed, else why a new core set? If, on the other hand, WotC saw this game as successful, rebooting it after stripping out the FFG universe trappings seems likely to annoy people, especially those who may have just gotten into the FFG game on the promise of the revised core. So I don't know. This is a game I always wanted to try, but even though it's probably, if anything, easier now, I know I probably won't because it's a dead game.


That’s a really good point about so many people saying “I used to play.”

I know nothing about Netrunner, but I think LCG need to be re-booted every few years to get new people interested. It’s too much work, and too overwhelming to get into a LCG after it’s been around for several years.


It's easier with a game like Magic where the primary skill is deck design, so you can quickly catch up by copying some good deck designs off the internet. Netrunner involves more skill, especially bluffing, and that isn't something that can be easily acquired online.


I’m not talking about the skills required to learn and play a game. I’m talking about getting into a game when there has been years worth of product released. It’s daunting to figure out what you need to start, and then you see the price of what you are getting into. It’s easier when you come in at the beginning of that train ride. You get a core set and then picking up a pack of cards every couple of months is painless. Re-booting an LCG is probably good for business. It opens up your market to new players, and a large enough chunk of the old players will probably continue to buy., to make it worthwhile.

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12 Jun 2018 17:03 #275247 by Shellhead
It still depends on the game. A new Magic player can safely ignore most of the sets that have been published, because competitive play only uses the most recent base set and a fixed number of recent expansions. The new Magic player wouldn't necessarily know that, but can easily find out after playing with other Magic players or doing some Googling. And of course the new player would need to learn a bit about the five colors of mana. By contrast, a new Vampire player would soon need to learn about a few political factions and 28 disciplines (similar to colors in Magic). Then they would need to know about the 40+ clans, each of which has three specific in-clan disciplines. The combat was significantly more complex than in Magic, and then there was the voting rules.

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12 Jun 2018 18:01 #275249 by Not Sure

ubarose wrote:
I’m not talking about the skills required to learn and play a game. I’m talking about getting into a game when there has been years worth of product released. It’s daunting to figure out what you need to start, and then you see the price of what you are getting into. It’s easier when you come in at the beginning of that train ride. You get a core set and then picking up a pack of cards every couple of months is painless. Re-booting an LCG is probably good for business. It opens up your market to new players, and a large enough chunk of the old players will probably continue to buy., to make it worthwhile.


The ironic part in the timing of the announcement is that FFG basically just did this by releasing new core sets. In the other thread the "going forward" recommendation was "a couple of those, the most recent expansion, and some stuff not out yet". Not "all the shit from the last six years".

FFG really had to have been expecting that license renewal to have gone through easily. They did a lot of work over the last year to create a reboot, only to watch the power get pulled at "Loading.... 90%"
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