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Subject: Can someone explain the dislike of FFG? rss

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Jeff McCarroll
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This horse has been well flogged. Please let her rest now.

Periodically I'll read negative refrences to FFG games like, "Too bad its a FFG game" or "Just keep in mind that it is a FFG product"

Being new to the hobby and looking at my short list of games, I have several FFG games and dare I say I like them.

So what is the back story?
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Paul DeStefano
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I think FFG rocks.

They've done some remakes I haven't loved, but I think they're a great company.
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M T
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Not many people say FFG consistently makes bad games, just that the rule books aren't very good the first time around.
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Alan
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Pojopep wrote:
Periodically I'll read negative refrences to FFG games like, "Too bad its a FFG game" or "Just keep in mind that it is a FFG product"

Being new to the hobby and looking at my short list of games, I have several FFG games and dare I say I like them.

So what is the back story?


Shrug. I think I've seen a comment before about all the bits with their games, but other than that I've never seen any "hate" towards them. I think they are the bomb diggity! Love their games.
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Rishi A.
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Pojopep wrote:
Periodically I'll read negative refrences to FFG games like, "Too bad its a FFG game" or "Just keep in mind that it is a FFG product"

Being new to the hobby and looking at my short list of games, I have several FFG games and dare I say I like them.

So what is the back story?


Nothing wrong with FFG games, but there are certain expectations with them. Great components, thematic game play and often a lot of minor rules with exceptions to those rules. There are exceptions to this rule, but most FFG games follow this model.
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Rich P
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There seems to be an assumption that FFG designs with expansions in mind, perhaps insofar as releasing an "incomplete" game in the knowledge that they can make more money through expansions which complete the play experience.

There have been a few problems with ambiguous game rules, requiring lots of FAQing. Sometimes FFG are not as quick at getting the FAQs out as gamers would like and the observation has been made that they shouldn't be necessary if thorough playtesting or proofreading had been conducted in the first place.

I'm not saying these complaints are necessarily true or that I agree with them completely, but that's what I've read.
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J C Lawrence
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FFG: Sloppy rules, too much emphasis on theme, overwrought game-obscuring art, and excessive reliance on random events.
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Ronnie
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woodnoggin wrote:
There seems to be an assumption that FFG designs with expansions in mind, perhaps insofar as releasing an "incomplete" game in the knowledge that they can make more money through expansions which complete the play experience.

There have been a few problems with ambiguous game rules, requiring lots of FAQing. Sometimes FFG are not as quick at getting the FAQs out as gamers would like and the observation has been made that they shouldn't be necessary if thorough playtesting or proofreading had been conducted in the first place.

I'm not saying these complaints are necessarily true or that I agree with them completely, but that's what I've read.


Too much FAQing around!? devil
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Jeff McCarroll
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The picture is becoming clear
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Kevin C.
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They are the big boy on the block, so they take some grief for being our “niche Hasborg.”

Labyrinthine rule books, overwrought design, & unmet expectations seem to be most hurled barbs. (Take a look at the MoM, Elder Sign, or Android formus, for example.)

They also take some heat over reprint decisions.

Personally, I love them and I am more likely to buy something if it is FFG. My last two purchases were whim purchases of Nexus Ops and WizWar. I might have bought those at some point, but I bought them now because they were FFG. I knew they would do justice to something crazy like WizWar.

At the end of the day, though, we are a tough lot to please. Almost all these companies take heat for stuff that is not really their fault or for decisions that are based on taste. Heck, some companies even get taken to task for giving out promos or storms in the East China Sea. I think FFG maybe gets more simply because they are bigger than most.

Kevin
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Enrico Viglino
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I've only got two of their games - both seem to
be euroish remakes of games that were originally
designed with a better grounding in believable mechanisms.

For one (Warrior Knights) I think they improved upon
the original. For the other (TI3 - and the whole TI franchise
was theirs), I can't speak for certain; but the euro elements
certainly stood out as just those which made the game
unpleasant for me.
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Steve Evans
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They're a rubbish company, still no expansion for Elder Sign.
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Jesse Fuchs
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I haven't bought any of their games—they're intriguing, but not up my alley enough for the price point—but this year-end summary by
Chris Farrell
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seems to make what seems like a coherent aesthetic argument against their 2011 output:

http://illuminatinggames.blogspot.com/2012/01/2011-year-in-h...

The relevant section:

Quote:
Secondly is the apparent implosion of Fantasy Flight, the most significant publisher of hobby boardgames designed and sold in America (other major US publishers in our segment like Rio Grande have very large percentages of their catalog made either in Europe or by European expertise; on the other hand, for Wizards of the Coast, boardgames are just a sideline). Fantasy Flight has always been a frustrating company for me, as in the past they’ve been able to routinely come up with good ideas and then routinely drop the ball on basic execution, but I kept hoping they’d learn to execute. This year, I flipped from hoping to writing them off. Their output is of course rather large – 2011 releases fill two pages of search results on BoardGameGeek – but everything I played this year was completely derivative and dire, well beyond even my jaded expectations of mediocrity. The Lord of the Rings Card Game is just an unimaginative retread of every other LCG they’ve done, devoid of thematic material and with major packaging problems. Mansion of Madness is a soulless dungeon crawl with tedious gameplay and painfully un-fun scenarios. Elder Sign is a confusing mess (subsequently ported to iOS/Android and made – almost unbelievably – even more incoherent). Rune Age is just every deck-building idea available thrown into a blender without any sense of taste or artistry, with predictably ugly results. These are not near-misses, or good ideas poorly executed. This is the result of someone playing at owning a game company. I am really not looking forward to seeing them mangle the Star Wars license.
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Jerry Martin
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I think FFG is a great company.
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Juan Carlos Goyes
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FFG is my favorite games company!

They made Arkham Horror and Battlestar Galactica among others.

FFG Rocks.
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Caleb
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NBAfan wrote:
No one says FFG makes bad games, just that the rule books aren't very good the first time around.



Speak for yourself. I say FFG makes bad games. They publish some nice stuff, but the things they design in-house are uniformly bad.
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Jonathan Tullsen
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Personally I like FFG, but Euro-gamers are probably opposed because FFG is primarily Ameritrash.
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Timothy Adamson
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I have a couple FFG releases, have played several more, and generally enjoy them. However, there are two things that could keep me from buying or make me disappointed that they are releasing a game:

1) It's going to be a long game with lots of rules that is difficult to explain to non-avid gamers. This isn't so much a problem with the game, just with my ability to bring it to play.

2) It's going to be very pretty, and thus very expensive. This is the case with Wiz War.

However, I don't think I'd ever say "Just keep in mind that it is a FFG product".
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Johan Haglert
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Doesn't this always happen to the leaders?

What about Magic and Apple for instance? Microsoft earlier? Edit: USA?


As the leader yoǘ'll get noticed.
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M. S.
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cannoneer wrote:
NBAfan wrote:
No one says FFG makes bad games, just that the rule books aren't very good the first time around.



Speak for yourself. I say FFG makes bad games. They publish some nice stuff, but the things they design in-house are uniformly bad.


A publishing company that Kick Starter self publishers aspire to be.
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Daniel Barrett
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Bill Robot
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Are they really the leader or just the flashiest?
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CJ
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FFG are a great company, and they release great games, but they blatantly churn some games out without properly developing and playtesting them. The flak they get for this is entirely justified and, frankly, if they continue to do it when there are vocal criticisms one wonders what it would be like if there were none...
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Random Chance
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As an owner of Arkham Horror and many expansions, I am a fan FFG just by the money I had spent.

I want to hear the opinions from fans of Ameri-style but not fans of FFG. Otherwise, I'll just think its devoted fans of Euro are boasting their advanced sense of enlightenment.

There is room for both in the world. I hope.

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Jacob Cassens
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I like FFG games a lot, but yes, their rulebooks almost uniformly contain excessively vague or incomplete rules. This wouldn't be so bad, but these things generally come up within the first few plays of a game, leading to the conclusion that they very likely would have come up in 100 or however many playtest games should have occurred as well.

The sad part is that most of the problems could be (and often are in FAQs many months later) fixed with a single, short sentence that magically seems like it should have been there in the first place. As I said, I enjoy FFG games, but there is a serious disconnect between the rules writing/playtesting and the fact that gamers generally like their rules to be concise and complete. (Also, it's annoying when the only place you find certain rules is in the examples (which I am grateful they include, because without them the rules would be even more illegible).)

Cheers,

Jacovis
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