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Subject: Disappointing rss

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Dan Kennedy
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Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?

I've demoed it several times and played it with some friends now that copies have arrived and it's always left a sour taste in my mouth. The game becomes less fun each time and more of a chore. It seems to try to be a bunch of things, marketplace, dice placement, bidding wars etc, but it hits just the surface of each one.

Seeing this game be tested for so long and end up like this left me a bit disappointed. I really liked Bullfrogs by the same designer, this game not so much.
 
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Cole
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KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.
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Trevor Schadt
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Lakoda wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.
To be fair, Cole, I'm sure Dan isn't the only person in the world who tries this game and finds it "a bit disappointing." So the answer to "is there anyone else" is almost certainly "yes."

However, I will say that what Dan seems to find frustrating -- the idea of breadth of strategies and mechanics rather than depth -- is appealing to a lot of players. Yes, there are several ways to score points, and doing well in the game involves efficiently prioritizing all of them and realizing that you're not going to excel at everything.

(I find Tokaido to be very similar in that aspect, and emphasize that when I teach it: choose 2 or 3 point-scoring methods in which to compete, because if you try to compete in them all you're going to end up not winning any of them.)

Every turn requires a delicate balance of where to put your priority for the turn: are you willing to take a lower number to get a class die and/or a better selection at the Market? Do you take that 6 you need to complete the 18 in your Primary Attribute, even though it's the wrong color for your backstory?

There is no straightforward "way to win" in RP, and figuring out the best way to optimize your point total can involve some very difficult decisions. To players who don't like "point salad" types of games, and/or prefer games where there's one primary way to win, and the winner is determined by who follows that one path the best, I can absolutely see how this game might be disappointing and/or frustrating.
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Joseph Propati
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Lakoda wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.


I second this!
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Cole
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ryudoowaru wrote:
Lakoda wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.
To be fair, Cole, I'm sure Dan isn't the only person in the world who tries this game and finds it "a bit disappointing." So the answer to "is there anyone else" is almost certainly "yes."
I did not say that no one found this disappointing, I said I did not. To speak for another person or for everyone as a whole would have been foolish of me.
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Tim Royal
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ryudoowaru wrote:
Lakoda wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.
To be fair, Cole, I'm sure Dan isn't the only person in the world who tries this game and finds it "a bit disappointing." So the answer to "is there anyone else" is almost certainly "yes."


True. But the rhetorical nature of the original question renders it rather moot, asked primarily to garner dissenting camaraderie.

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Nathan Dennis
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Not me ... I helped play test this a bit and then backed the KS. Since it arrived a few days ago, I've managed to get it played three times w/ 2 and 3 players ... and we really liked it .. it's not a deep strategy game, but I think it fits the theme perfectly .. we also took time after each game to tell a brief story about our characters based on the end game outcome ... like my Orc Monk with 19 STR and 2 INT

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Marty McFly
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KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing
We like it quite a lot. True, as someone else pointed out, it's a bit of a point-salad game, but we're fine with that and we enjoy the decisions of where to place the dice (both on the Marketplace and on the character sheet), what Skills/Traits/Equipment to purchase to help build our characters, and the story that can unfold as we use the cards. We're also all current or past Dungeons & Dragons players, so the theme hits home for us.

KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Seeing this game be tested for so long and end up like this left me a bit disappointed. I really liked Bullfrogs by the same designer, this game not so much.
No game is for everyone. I dislike most games with a heavy negotiation element. That doesn't make them bad games or bad designs; they simply aren't games that I happen to enjoy. But to suggest that this game wasn't playtested or developed enough because you didn't like it is...well, a bit disappointing.

It's also not a good idea to set expectations on Roll Player's gameplay based on Bullfrogs' simply because they came from the same designer. Bullfrogs is a straight-up abstract strategy game; Roll Player is dice and card drafting. To compare the two would be like comparing Dominion and Kingdom Builder and expecting to have the same feelings about both because they're Donald X. Vaccarino designs.
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Dan Kennedy
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ryudoowaru wrote:
Lakoda wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing?
Nope.
To be fair, Cole, I'm sure Dan isn't the only person in the world who tries this game and finds it "a bit disappointing." So the answer to "is there anyone else" is almost certainly "yes."

However, I will say that what Dan seems to find frustrating -- the idea of breadth of strategies and mechanics rather than depth -- is appealing to a lot of players. Yes, there are several ways to score points, and doing well in the game involves efficiently prioritizing all of them and realizing that you're not going to excel at everything.

(I find Tokaido to be very similar in that aspect, and emphasize that when I teach it: choose 2 or 3 point-scoring methods in which to compete, because if you try to compete in them all you're going to end up not winning any of them.)

Every turn requires a delicate balance of where to put your priority for the turn: are you willing to take a lower number to get a class die and/or a better selection at the Market? Do you take that 6 you need to complete the 18 in your Primary Attribute, even though it's the wrong color for your backstory?

There is no straightforward "way to win" in RP, and figuring out the best way to optimize your point total can involve some very difficult decisions. To players who don't like "point salad" types of games, and/or prefer games where there's one primary way to win, and the winner is determined by who follows that one path the best, I can absolutely see how this game might be disappointing and/or frustrating.


Thanks for the thought out answer. I'm trying to figure out what I'm missing that everyone else seems to see. This game was hyped locally a lot with a ton of testing and promotions at local stores. I tried it several times and every time the "points salad" like mechanics you mentioned fell flat. It felt like each time players had limited choices and everyone simply picked the best choice. At that point there wasn't much strategy to winning; more just who found the right cards at the right time.

I really enjoy other multi point system mechanic games (Five Tribes and Quadrolpolis are some of my favorites). I just haven't found how to make this game enjoyable for my playgroup. Maybe I just read into the hype too much.
 
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Dan Kennedy
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martidem wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Anyone else find this game a bit disappointing
We like it quite a lot. True, as someone else pointed out, it's a bit of a point-salad game, but we're fine with that and we enjoy the decisions of where to place the dice (both on the Marketplace and on the character sheet), what Skills/Traits/Equipment to purchase to help build our characters, and the story that can unfold as we use the cards. We're also all current or past Dungeons & Dragons players, so the theme hits home for us.

KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Seeing this game be tested for so long and end up like this left me a bit disappointed. I really liked Bullfrogs by the same designer, this game not so much.
No game is for everyone. I dislike most games with a heavy negotiation element. That doesn't make them bad games or bad designs; they simply aren't games that I happen to enjoy. But to suggest that this game wasn't playtested or developed enough because you didn't like it is...well, a bit disappointing.

It's also not a good idea to set expectations on Roll Player's gameplay based on Bullfrogs' simply because they came from the same designer. Bullfrogs is a straight-up abstract strategy game; Roll Player is dice and card drafting. To compare the two would be like comparing Dominion and Kingdom Builder and expecting to have the same feelings about both because they're Donald X. Vaccarino designs.


I'm not saying the game wasn't properly tested or designed. I'm not trying to gather negative buzz, I'm simply trying to figure out what all the hoopla is about. Interpret my words as you will. I purchased the game to help a local developer and was disappointed in the games results. I guess I'll keep any negative opinions to myself in the future.
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Trevor Schadt
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KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
I'm not saying the game wasn't properly tested or designed.
Then I think people are getting confused by this statement:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
Seeing this game be tested for so long and end up like this left me a bit disappointed.
which certainly seems to be saying "if this game was tested for that long, it should have been a less disappointing game." I know I was certainly surprised by your later statement. If that's not what you meant by that, then please elucidate.

KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
I guess I'll keep any negative opinions to myself in the future.
Nobody's trying to shut you down for having a negative opinion. You asked if people found it disappointing, we're saying "no" and telling you why not.
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Dan Kennedy
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ryudoowaru wrote:

KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
I guess I'll keep any negative opinions to myself in the future.
Nobody's trying to shut you down for having a negative opinion. You asked if people found it disappointing, we're saying "no" and telling you why not.


I would disagree. Some people are putting up useful and helpful posts, others are just being dicks.
 
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Trevor Schadt
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KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
It felt like each time players had limited choices and everyone simply picked the best choice. At that point there wasn't much strategy to winning; more just who found the right cards at the right time.
The intriguing part of the game, at least for me, is trying to figure out what "the best choice" is at any given time. And I gave a couple of examples of that in my previous reply.

But, again, not every game is for everyone. This just might not be "your game" and there's nothing wrong with that.
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Trevor Schadt
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KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
I would disagree. Some people are putting up useful and helpful posts, others are just being dicks.
...Welcome to BGG?
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Marty McFly
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ryudoowaru wrote:
KennedyMeijiHawk wrote:
I would disagree. Some people are putting up useful and helpful posts, others are just being dicks.
...Welcome to BGG?
You're thinking too small. Welcome to the Internet!
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Drake Coker
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In my incredible sample size of one four-person game, I can reliably state that people who lose love this game and want to play again while winners find it to be fine, but not amazing.

(7/10 for me)


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Brad Olson
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I like the game quite a bit. Mostly because my first intro to the hobby was D&D back in the late 70's. I also like the point-salad optimization puzzle.

However, this game fell flat for my "kids" (now in their 20's) with no nostalgic ties to classic role playing. They say they don't "get" the theme.

Different tastes...
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Kathy Sheets
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We're having a lot of fun with it. I'm sure, like most games, that there will be some who don't care for it, and that's fine. I hate to be disappointed, too, but sometimes it just turns out that way.
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Lance McMillan
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My sole dissapointment with the game is that it's strictly limited to a max of four players. My group usually has more and don't like splitting into two groups (especially when one of those groups ends up with just two players). Can't tell you how much we all wish there were options for up to six or seven...

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Trevor Schadt
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Lancer4321 wrote:
My sole dissapointment with the game is that it's strictly limited to a max of four players. My group usually has more and don't like splitting into two groups (especially when one of those groups ends up with just two players). Can't tell you how much we all wish there were options for up to six or seven...
Seven would be tough, because there are only six character dice colors, so with seven there would be a duplicate, meaning that two players would be at a disadvantage because they'd be competing for Class dice. (And it wouldn't be right to use gold, since gold dice are treated differently than other colors.)

However, it should be feasible to kit-bash two sets together to make a 5-6-player version. What I'd be worried about is downtime in the Drafting Phase.
 
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Cole
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I feel like 4P is already getting a little to bogged down. I'd be scared of 5+ players. It'd take for evah!
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Marty McFly
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Lakoda wrote:
I'd be scared of 5+ players. It'd take for evah!
A few other things I'd consider before attempting a 5+ player game:

1. At 7, you'll have at least one duplicate of a class color. This can lead to those players battling over die colors, while other players get their colors easily. Could create a balance issue. I recall some discussion on this during the Kickstarter campaign.

2. Along similar lines, you wouldn't want to add all the dice from the second copy of the game. You'd have to properly stock the dice bag to keep a good distribution without introducing the potential to draw many greens, for example, but never draw a blue. I haven't done the math to determine the optimal distribution, but it's probably safe just add one set of dice per player after 4 (a set being one die of each color).

This can sometimes be an issue in a 2-player game (where one player's class color comes up a lot but the other player's color is hardly drawn at all). Like I said, I haven't done the math, but we may house-rule that one or two sets of dice is removed from the game for each player under 4. Probably not a full three sets per player, though, as that may make it significantly more difficult to complete Backstory placements.

3. Players start with a different amount of dice on their characters based on the number of players in the game. 6/7/8 dice for 2/3/4 players respectively. I'm assuming this is a way to help manage game length as it means fewer rounds at higher player counts. You may or may not want to follow this pattern for 5+ players. It will help keep game length down, but it will also mean fewer opportunities to purchase from the Market, which changes the balance of Armor collection strategies and players' abilities to manipulate their Alignment via Skill usage.
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Cole
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If you add to many dice in the beginning you are cutting down on the number of actions and cards you gets. This means you have less control - few things to help mitigate the randomness.
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Marty McFly
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Lakoda wrote:
If you add to many dice in the beginning you are cutting down on the number of actions and cards you gets. This means you have less control - few things to help mitigate the randomness.
Exactly. But with fewer starting dice in a 5+ player game, you run the risk of depleting the Market before the game is over. Of course, you can just add extra cards from the other copy of the game, but then you have duplicate Market cards, which could cause issues (depending on which cards are duplicated -- for example, is a Rogue with 2 Slight of Hand Skills too powerful; or do two Honorables, two Nimbles, and two Prouds in a single game throw off scoring balances somehow?) I suspect it's not a simple as shuffling two decks of Market cards together and removing X for the player count. It may take some playtesting and house-ruling to remove/tweak some cards for balance.

If someone's up for that, I'd be interested to hear the results (although probably not in this thread, since we're getting way off topic).
 
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Richard Keiser

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No. Still enjoy it.

Then again, there is no accounting for taste.
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