Vast: The Mysterious Manor is the Arthouse Dungeoncrawl - Review

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04 Oct 2019 17:54 #302219 by Michael Barnes
The genius of Vast: The Mysterious Manor is in how...

One of 2019's best and most compelling designs.

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05 Oct 2019 11:36 - 05 Oct 2019 11:38 #302220 by drewcula
Pretentiousness aside, this review is a good read.

BTW - This game was Kickstarted.
Last edit: 05 Oct 2019 11:38 by drewcula.
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05 Oct 2019 18:04 #302222 by Michael Barnes
Hey, how often do I get to just flex on something like this? It’s rare something comes along that really inspires me to go full critic like this.

Yeah, it’s a Kickstarter all right- and the upcoming Root expansion also from Leder is the only thing I’ve ever backed other than Glory to Rome. I had no qualms about backing them on that- it’s a proven company with proven product and a relatively modest KS. It’s kind of unavoidable anymore. But I’m no less critical of the platform, especially with their union-busting.

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05 Oct 2019 19:24 - 05 Oct 2019 20:15 #302223 by Frohike
I understand what you're getting at here, but just as Vast has -- via KS increment -- improved & crossed a qualitative threshold that has made it a noticeably better game, so have the strawman "Heroquest clones" you're decrying in the review. These were all the rage back when Dark Souls came out but I think the relentless KS churn has started to also introduce some good designs into this space. As much as I'd like to think that Vast comes from a singular, "better" primordial soup, I think other styles of compelling crawlers are also emerging from the same swamp.
Last edit: 05 Oct 2019 20:15 by Frohike.
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05 Oct 2019 23:38 #302224 by Michael Barnes
Sure, look no further than my reviews of Core Space and Lifeform- both are fundamentally dungeoncrawlers with Core Space being way closer to Heroquest. But Vast is really a very different format, with the whole multiple perspectives/processionally divergent roles thing going on. I think the roles concept isn’t necessarily new (see: Dune) but applying that to this kind of game is. I am including the original Vast on that.

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08 Oct 2019 15:29 - 08 Oct 2019 15:29 #302277 by engelstein
I need to check this out. Cole has been on a tear with his designs.

This really makes me want to go back to Space Cadets. One of the big knocks on the game was that every player needed to be taught a different game - but we as an audience seem to be getting around that. I think in our case we were undercut by the 'zany' theme, which drew in players looking for a lighter game than it was.

So I'd love to do - not a retheme, but a resetting of expectations. I think it would've done a lot better as "Starfleet Academy", as people would bring a serious sense of 'learning the stations' to the table.
Last edit: 08 Oct 2019 15:29 by engelstein.
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