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City of Spies: Estoril 1942» Forums » General

Subject: It's all In a Name - Why I'm Buying This Game (City of Spies) rss

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Ryan Bretsch
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University City
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One thing Tom Vasel pointed out in his Dice Tower Review of "Estoril 1942" 8 months ago was that he thought the game was highly interesting and excellent but that it would probably not get much exposure in the U.S. because of the title name, which was not relatable for an American audience.

I loved the art of "Estoril 1942" and was quickly warming to the game concept but I totally agreed with Tom in that it would be very difficult to get this to my game table just because I didn't feel like my friends could relate to it. Another game, "Covert", on the other hand, also had cool art but with a name that evoked something relatable to spies and tangible fun. So I started focusing on buying that game. I literally was not going to buy "Estoril 1942" solely because of its name.

So enter Stronghold Games and the simple change of one thing-- the name change to "City of Spies" for the American audience. A very smart move and now a smart move which results in a sale. So thank you Stronghold Games. I hope other companies take your lead in recognizing all of the variables that go into marketing a game to its intended targeted audience.

(BTW, This is NOT an advocation that the name of the title in other markets should be changed just to fit American tastes.)
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Dick Butler
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I, too, have pre-ordered both these games, though (sadly) neither has arrived yet. I wonder whether the name change of Estoril is delaying its release here. I'm getting impatient.
 
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Randy Espinoza
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I also have City of Spies on pre-order. I really like all about the gameplay, I didn't mind the name, was going to get it regardless: solid gameplay!

To clarify also, they DID change more than the name, both gameplay and some rebalance of cards: check the International Edition - The new rules and why thread and the Cards Change file.

Regarding Covert: I've been following it for the longest time, have watched the demos, read the rulebook, but I'm still not sure of the actual gameplay experience. I'm going to wait for a game play video or a review before I decide.
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Ryan Bretsch
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Espinoza wrote:

Regarding Covert: I've been following it for the longest time, have watched the demos, read the rulebook, but I'm still not sure of the actual gameplay experience. I'm going to wait for a game play video or a review before I decide.


Exactly how I feel.
 
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Jack
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I totally missed the fact that the name changed and asked my wife to go ove r to Stronghold and pick up Estoril 1942, which she couldn't find. I agree that the name change was smart.

As for Covert... we played a demo taught by Kane, and our feeling was that the game is quite fiddly, and the icons are hard to internalize quickly. I got the sense that there were a couple different icon systems, and it was challenging on first play to identify which icons on which cards went with what system/purpose.

Beautiful game, though. I have not yet crossed it off my list.
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Stephen Buonocore
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Preorders (direct from Stronghold Games) went out weeks ago.

There were changes implemented between the two editions, as Stronghold Games did some development on the game with the designers to help balance the game a bit more. There are also variant rules in the booklet now, which add more gamerly things and variability.

Finally, the name is officially "CITY OF SPIES: ESTORIL 1942", and this was the new edition's world wide name for all of the partners. All international partners agreed that this was a better name for the new edition globally.

Thanks,
Stephen M. Buonocore
Stronghold Games
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Ryan Bretsch
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evilone wrote:

Preorders (direct from Stronghold Games) went out weeks ago.

There were changes implemented between the two editions, as Stronghold Games did some development on the game with the designers to help balance the game a bit more. There are also variant rules in the booklet now, which add more gamerly things and variability.

Finally, the name is officially "CITY OF SPIES: ESTORIL 1942", and this was the new edition's world wide name for all of the partners. All international partners agreed that this was a better name for the new edition globally.

Thanks,
Stephen M. Buonocore
Stronghold Games


Grade: A++

I read over the rules last night on PDF. I only have so many games in my collection and I only add about 1-2 games a year to that collection. Not only will I add this game to the mix now -- but I think you have a BIG winner here. To me, the spy genre is completely underserved in boardgames and I think this one really gets it right. I have a good feeling that this could become one of the prizes of my collection. The art on this game is a complete home run all the way through. No faint praise coming from me.

Now, Covert has excellent box art. Amazing box art, in fact. But the board art doesn't evoke the nearly same "awe" as the cover art on the box and I'm getting the feeling that the mechanics on Covert could be a little wonky. Plus, who ever heard of a spy game that was deliberately non-confrontational? I was so looking forward to Covert and now I'm firmly in the "maybe" camp. I'm actually disappointed, as I was initially very excited to buy Covert after seeing the box art.

So for Stronghold Games to step in and deliver "CITY OF SPIES"-- a seemingly perfect game for a casual audience -- with the right theme, with the right "weight", the right art and with the right name, is a ridiculously pleasant and unexpected surprise.

My absolute highest compliment:

City of Spies is exactly how I feel Days of Wonder would have conceptualized a game from start to finish when they were in their prime.

Outstanding effort on this one Stronghold and I so look forward to this game.
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Gil Orey
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Thank you for your kind words
meeplemeeplemeeple
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Stephen Buonocore
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Giving credit where credit is due, the game AND the art AND all concepts were due to Gil at Mesa Boardgames.

So, Gil hit the home run. We helped them get their swing together when the pitch was right (with some additional development on the original design)...

Thanks,
Stephen M. Buonocore
Stronghold Games
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Gil Orey
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Thanks Stephen for believing and being a great partner in this project meeple
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Srdj
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Got my copy. Will give it a go soon. Thanks.
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