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Subject: Decision Games.. do they reprint anything right? rss

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I haven't followed DG's new games, so I can't rate them, but has DG made any of its SPI reprints *better* than the original?

Also, is anyone reprinting SPI's fantasy and science fiction titles? Or do wargamers only like historical battles these days?
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Steven Mitchell
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I'm trying to think through, and I don't know if there's been a reprint with universal acclaim, but that's in part due to the source material. I honestly don't think that there are many old SPI titles that would receive universal acclaim these days even if 'done right'. Battle for Germany is the one big exception, I think...

That said, there are a good number of DG/SPI reprints that I've enjoyed: War in Europe, War in the Pacific, USN, and — since Christmas — War Between the States.
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Caleb Wynn
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DG has Outreach, Star Soldier, and Star Force Alpha Centauri. Also, a reprint of Free Mars.
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Leo Zappa
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I thought they did pretty good with Napoleon's Last Battles.

pictures of their new edition:




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patton1138 wrote:
I'm trying to think through, and I don't know if there's been a reprint with universal acclaim, but that's in part due to the source material. I honestly don't think that there are many old SPI titles that would receive universal acclaim these days even if 'done right'. Battle for Germany is the one big exception, I think...

That said, there are a good number of DG/SPI reprints that I've enjoyed: War in Europe, War in the Pacific, USN, and — since Christmas — War Between the States.


How are they better/different from the originals?
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J.L. Robert
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I haven't heard of any complaints about their reprints of Battle for Germany and Leningrad.
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Jeremy Fridy
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At least they are better then AP version of Imperium.
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DG's record is pretty spotty in this regard, and they've had some spectacular failures (Wacht am Rhein was an epic debacle), but they do seem to be getting better.

RAFis excellent, though that's more a redesign than a reprint. Battle for Stalingrad left the legend off the TEC on the map - they used the map from an earlier Japanese reprint, removed the Japanese writing but forgot to replace it with English. The rest of the reprint is fine, although the layout of the rules is so poor that I think they actually scanned and OCR'ed the original SPI version. The map itself and the counters are error-free as far as I know, and the rules, while not pretty, are clear and complete. So I'd call that a successful reprint overall.

The only other DG reprints I own are Napoleon's Last Battles and the Thirty Years War quad. I don't care much for the new counter art, but the maps are fine and there are no errata issues.

I'm a bit shy of DG because of bad experiences in the past, but they do seem to be improving.
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Val Ruza
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My understanding the version of Wacht Am Rhein will be corrected, at least I hope so since I pre-ordered it! I think RAF: The Battle of Britain 1940 is nice, although I do not as of yet have the original to compare.
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Bill Wood
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Belz wrote:
My understanding the version of Wacht Am Rhein will be corrected, at least I hope so since I pre-ordered it! I think RAF: The Battle of Britain 1940 is nice, although I do not as of yet have the original to compare.


WaR II is going to be my make it or break it game. They need to get this one right.

-----------------------

The mash up of Battle for Stalingrad sounds lazy - Scanned and OCR'ed rulebook without proofing it - really? Come on! That is what an amateur group of gamers do to share rulebooks for a game with each other - not publication.
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Barry Kendall
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Wilhammer wrote:
Belz wrote:
My understanding the version of Wacht Am Rhein will be corrected, at least I hope so since I pre-ordered it! I think RAF: The Battle of Britain 1940 is nice, although I do not as of yet have the original to compare.


WaR II is going to be my make it or break it game. They need to get this one right.

-----------------------

The mash up of Battle for Stalingrad sounds lazy - Scanned and OCR'ed rulebook without proofing it - really? Come on! That is what an amateur group of gamers do to share rulebooks for a game with each other - not publication.


As one of those who invested (heavily, espcially given average wargame prices at that time) in the WaR remake then spent an awful lot of hours trying to untangle the rulebook and print-and-mount "correction" counters downloaded for the purpose, as far as I am concerned, the only way DG will "get it right" with "WaR II ("II")" is if they provide a correction kit for the cost of postage to those who bought the first remake.

I will not trust them again until they demonstrate the understanding that the producer, not the consumer, should bear the responsibility for substandard products.

Re "Battle for Germany," I have both editions, and I believe the first is better. The addition of twenty more counters has caused a significant change in play balance that has made the game less enjoyable imo.

While I'm glad to see them moving forward on some worthwhile reprints--"A Mighty Fortress" and "Barbarian, Kingdom, and Empire" come to mind, and I am quite happy to have a copy of "Empires of the Middle Ages," which I missed the first time 'round--I hope they are looking at feedback reactions and errata connected with first editions (such as the considerable quantity of errata and "balancing" applied after release to the old SPI two-map Stalingrad Campaign game) and incorporate this into reprints and revisions as the top priority, before attempting any further amendments.

I don't wish business misfortune on any game publisher (except for AIWA, and they're long gone), but reputations are hard to rebuild after consumer confidence is shaken.

Things like the withdrawn offer of a WaR II Update Kit do nothing for such confidence, nor do other sad stories related to recent products.

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I was pleased when DG printed Russian Civil War 1918-1922 (second edition) in S&T - a reprint of Russian Civil War 1918-1922 (first edition).

Component-wise it was fine - and the DG edition added Mongolia (and some Mongolian units) to the map, which was great. But they didn't address some of the ambiguities in the original rules, which I thought was an opportunity lost.

And I'm glad DG reprinted Empires of the Middle Ages though again, they seem to do nothing with the rules but just reprint them.
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JOSEPH BORNSTEIN
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They really screwed the pooch on World War I when they failed to indicate the starting resource points.

And some of the reprint choices have been bizarre.
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Barry Kendall wrote:


While I'm glad to see them moving forward on some worthwhile reprints--"A Mighty Fortress" and "Barbarian, Kingdom, and Empire" come to mind, and I am quite happy to have a copy of "Empires of the Middle Ages," which I missed the first time 'round--I hope they are looking at feedback reactions and errata connected with first editions (such as the considerable quantity of errata and "balancing" applied after release to the old SPI two-map Stalingrad Campaign game) and incorporate this into reprints and revisions as the top priority, before attempting any further amendments.



I own all three of those games. I built the first, since no one was selling it at the time, and it's a lovely set (but I hate the game...) I love BKE. I have to wonder what changes DG has made to it.

As for EoMA, they replaced a very functional PtP map with a less functional Area Movement map and apparently added a bunch of pointless chrome, which isn't integrated into the main game.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. Thanks.
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In my experience, DG more often gets it wrong than right, and that is a lot of good money after bad for me. I have both copies of WBTS, and setting aside the significant improvement in graphics of the reprint, the new version is lazy. The things missing from the original are still missing from the reprint. There is no historical schedule for reinforcements so you are tied to the time consuming unit construction cycle (time consuming in real life). It might have some bearing in WiE and WitE, but I found it a gimmick even in those, where it is more justified.

When you try and talk about this with the two guys who have been most helpful on Consim (not sure if this do this for free or if DG compensates them), they get very defensive and become deaf. They are not willing to say, "Look, I see your point, you have a valid issue here, but I don't have the time to correct it unless DG will pay me for my efforts."

With EotMA, again, another display of laziness. Issues from the past are issues in the present.

Now, I like the original Conquerors, so, once DG sent all the missing counters and play aids and what not, I was and am happy. It is one of Berg's best designs, though the tactical map never did work right. The reprint is well done, but the game, aside from the tactical component (which is a real issue for others), was good the first time.

If I can trade for it, or fall into another pile of game money, I will also buy the WaRII reprint, bloody fool that I am.

goo

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Bill Wood
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It is a damned shame that GMT does not own the SPI catalog....imagine how fantastic the remakes would be!
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Eric Lai
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I am glad also just to have GMT create fantastic new games as it is doing now.
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Matt Irsik
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I thought that the USN Deluxe and Drive on Stalingrad reprints were pretty good, but the folios, at least in my opinion were a disaster. I thought the Cobra remake in S&T wasn't too bad, but the set up was very difficult because of the numbers they used on the counters. I would like to see a reprint of the sci-fi games.
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Drive on Stalingrad (second edition) is a completely new game with the same title, on the same subject. As someone that bought the original when it first came out I can say the new game is better. I have Battle for Stalingrad reprint also and don't have any issues with it.
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Edward Kendrick
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Actually, I liked the new map in Empires of the Middle Ages, but I agree DG did nothing to clean up the old rules, and the new rules they added weren't well expressed or tested. The counter mix was poorly thought out as well.

My impression was they had a limited budget and spent it all on the map ... which when they charged $100 for the game didn't sit well with me.
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Barbarossa wrote:
Actually, I liked the new map in Empires of the Middle Ages, but I agree DG did nothing to clean up the old rules, and the new rules they added weren't well expressed or tested. The counter mix was poorly thought out as well.

My impression was they had a limited budget and spent it all on the map ... which when they charged $100 for the game didn't sit well with me.


When I first saw the EoMA map, I was a little down on it. It was weird-looking. But it's really quite elegant, and attractive once you get used to it. Area-movement might look nice on a wall, but it's less useful for playing.
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I've only picked up the two old mega-monster reprints; War in Europe (second edition) and War in the Pacific (second edition). I own both the older SPI versions as well. A straight reprint upgrading the counters and graphics would have been enough for me, and that's almost what they did with WiE. For WitP, I was excited about the island maps, but they didn't really make that much difference in actual play, but still, DG did a decent job. I'm not sorry I spent the money.

From what I've seen of the rest, I'll be very careful before I plop down a half dozen game's worth of money and take a chance on one of the reprinted titles.
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Bob Schindler
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NO,NO and NO.

Buy this gem to get my point.




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Eric Lai
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Put it into perspective... I didn't think Empires of the Middle Ages's original (I've the reprint) rules were that bad! They were pretty much playable out of the box. The errors were easily fixed. I played my first game without looking for errata.

I think the reprint of the Russian Civil War 1918-1922 (second edition) was very good too. Rules were fine (I didn't play the original) and had absolutely no problems out of the box (magazine). Sure the rule layout could've been better and how the rules were arranged could've been more streamline, but overall more than serviceable. I thought the designer notes were excellent and the quality of this issue of S&T top notch.

Sidewynnder wrote:
DG has Outreach, Star Soldier, and Star Force Alpha Centauri. Also, a reprint of Free Mars.


Can't wait for this trilogy to come out. I doubt they will dare touch the rules for these games, they were extremely complicated even for their time. Some color examples of play, upgraded counters/map, better player-aids would make me a happy camper. (not asking for much.)
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Sim Guy
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rschindl@swbell.net wrote:
NO,NO and NO.

Buy this gem to get my point.



Boy you nailed this one. I had once played the original South Mountain (Southard version) and bought this expecting the same treatment of three more battles besides. I had just come off of a play of Across 5 Aprils and was hoping for similar results. Nope. The guys at DG did some tinkering with the system: I could see what they were trying to do, but it just didn't need to be done, IMHO. They managed to turn gold into lead.
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