Drake Storm
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I am an aspiring game designer and of the many games I am working on, one is an adaptation of the old Avalon Hill game, TITAN. However, before I get too far into it, I figure I should ask an important question.

So my question is:

If you like the game, what aspect(s) do you like best.
Example:
1) The massive die rolling
2) The tactical combat on the small terrain sheets
3) The mustering of bigger and bigger creatures
4) The forced movement on the main board
5) Other

or

If you don't like the game (or even if you like the game), what aspect(s) do you like least.
Example:
1) The massive die rolling
2) The down time between turns
3) Overall length of the game
4) The forced movement on the main board (stopping you from going where you want, attacking who you want, etc.)
5) Player Elimination
6) Other

Thanks in advance.
 
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Jay Richardson
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For my old gaming group, what killed Titan was definitely:

3) Overall length of the game

We would play 3 or 4 player games of Titan for 6 to 8 hours and be nowhere near finishing. We finally just gave up.

We all loved the game, but it just took too long to play... and none of the suggestions for speeding up / shortening the game appealed to us.
 
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Richard Diosi
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Enjoy:

2,3 and 4.

What keeps this game on the shelf is the massive downtime during tactical battles and the elimination of some players early.
 
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Eric Brosius
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The best features of Titan:

(1) More immune to "stop the leader" play than any similar game I know of. Attacking someone foolishly can actually make them stronger.

(2) Despite the die rolling, luck plays a fairly small part. An average player has only a small chance of beating experts.

(3) It works very well with any number from 2 to 6.

(4) A small number of decisions each turn (other than in the battles,) but with far-reaching effects.


The downside:

(1) Overly cautious players make the game take a long time.

(2) Some people can be eliminated. This is a problem if there's nothing else for them to do.

(3) The battleboards do take a long time and involve only 2 players.

I'll mention that all three of these downside features are much less of a problem in a 2-player game.
 
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Erik Tyrrell
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enjoy 2 little tactical games, and 4 the movement of pieces upon the main board

I disliked 5, player elimination
 
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Steve Hope
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It's my favorite game, probably. Things I like:

1. Mustering process/building troop power over time. I love games where the guys you start with become obsolete over time--it's like a RTS game without all the logistics!

2. I like being individually represented in the game. It lends a narrative element that many games lack.

3. It's a very skillful game.

4. The tactical boards are lots of fun.

Downside is definitely player elimination--I'd argue that you should NOT play with 5 or 6 players and that the game is far superior with 2-4 (with 3 probably ideal).
 
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Have faith
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I like:

2) The tactical combat on the small terrain sheets
3) The mustering of bigger and bigger creatures
4) The forced movement on the main board


I don't like:

3) Overall length of the game
5) Player Elimination


Comments on these:

1) The massive die rolling - this is OK for a wargame, but if you can find another mechanic, so much the better.

2) The down time between turns - I don't remmber this being a big problem.


The biggest overall problem with this game is that it takes way too long. 2-3 hours max would be best. Otherwise, I like it very much.

Good luck
 
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Lexingtonian
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The tactical combat is the best part.
 
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Donald Wilbur III
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I'll pretty much echo what others are saying.

Best parts: 2, 3, & 4

Worst part(s): the combination of 3 and 5. A player getting elimiated on the third turn thru no fault of his own is bad enough, but having to sit there and watch his friends play for 6 more hours... That's a real problem.

That said, it's a great game in a lot of ways. The online version Colossus (especially the Abyssal 6 variant) is excellent and you can often finish a game in an hour. Even in face to face the game time does decrease as people begin to understand the movement options.
 
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Mike Bregoli
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I'm not really a fan of Titan, but have played several times.

I like:

3) The mustering of bigger and bigger creatures
4) The forced movement on the main board


Dislike:

1) The massive die rolling
2) The tactical combat on the small terrain sheets
2) The down time between turns
3) Overall length of the game

 
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DrakeStorm wrote:

3) The mustering of bigger and bigger creatures

This is by far the coolest thing about Titan in my opinion.

I got rid of the game because of the the silly issue of having to take time out of the game while two other players play a mini tactical combat game.
 
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Brian Bankler
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I'm with Eric.

1) In most games, if A attacks B, everyone else wins. Here A, B (or everyone else) could profit from the attack. So "letting you and him" fight isn't the way to go.

2) Plays well with 2, 3 or more. (More being an investment).

The real downsides are player elimination and variability. New players aren't agressive enough, which slows the game down, but even experts will occasionally have the true marathon game. Coupled with player elimination, it means that if you are ousted, you don't know if you've got to wait 20 minutes or may as well just give up and catch a movie. (The LotR trilogy, perhaps?)

The battles (battleboards) are cool, but not if you are watching.

Honestly, if someone could make a game that was a consistent two hour game that captured points 1 & 2 above, it would be a huge hit.
 
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Mark Woodson
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I think Titan is one of the all time great games on the order of chess. All of the mechanics interact very well. My favorite parts of the game are the switching between the main board and battle maps and the muster hierarchy.

The die rolling can become tedius but I don't mind it too much. The big downer for me is playing with people who don't know the game well, it bogs the whole thing down. There is a lot you have to know all at once before the game "clicks".

Once you know every move from a given spot with any die roll, every muster possibility, penalty and bonus for battle terrain, battle odd between various creatures, and unique creature abilities such as range strike/flying/etc the game really gets exciting and plays quickly. Too few people are willing to learn the game well enough to really appreciate it.

I don't mind player elimination because that helps accelerate the pace of the game, especially near the end.

If there were some way to simplify learning without loosing too much depth and options the game would be more accessible.
 
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Bill Skulley
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Likes: #2 and #3 are what makes the game so much fun for me. #4 really makes the game work as it makes for strategy as well as limiting your possible actions.

Dislikes: Not much, really. If it was shorter I might be able to convince folks to play it more often, but the length of the game never offended me... #1 always seems to burn me, but I've learned to live with it
 
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Ludes
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For my group (only meets a few times a year, but goes back almost 25 years) and its tentacles, Titan has seen significantly less playing time in the last 4-5 years. I don't consider this a reflection of Titan so much as a reflection of the high level of quality of newer games. Why go for a 5 - 8 hour game of Titan when you can probably play a game each of Princes of Florence, Power Grid, and Puerto Rico. And I've seen some games go over 12 hours.

Two things I haven't heard in this thread yet in the context of battles are ...

a) "Fleeing" (victor only gets half points and his stack does not get revealed) ... If the attackee is obviously going to lose the battle and is probably not going to take any more than one or two of the cheaper creatures with him, this is always a good option to avoid battles.

b) what I would call "bartering" (This may be covered in the rules - it has been a very long time since I last read them.) ... "Ok, you're going to win, but you're going to lose 2 Centaurs and a Ranger" ... "No, I'd lose the 2 Lions before I lose the Ranger" ... "OK, 2 centaurs and 2 lions" (sigh) ... If the two combatants can agree, the battle is scored up normally without bothering to conduct the actual combat. I've seen the range of results - 100% or close to 100% accuracy a good deal of the time, to mutual destruction, to the other person winning the battle in a couple of bizarre instances.

... between those two mechanisms, it has sometimes been 2 hours into a game before the first battleboard ever comes out (Perhaps that is something to think about, how to accelerate the game based on what mechanism is used to resolve conflicts.).

What I like about the game: it looks and plays relatively simple, but it's not; decision-making process on the masterboard; the twists of luck on the battleboards; the artwork (the individualization of the pieces as well as stack markers); you can learn a lot watching very good players against one another.

What I dislike about the game: downtime for battles when there are 2 or more in a row; very early elimination (almost inevitable in a 5- or 6-player game, not uncommon in a 4-player); it's not a good game with players of disparate skill and experience levels; getting consistently bad die rolls on the masterboard.

For me, the issue of gamelength is usually tied into how well I am doing in the game.

 
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Neil Carr
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In principle I should like Titan, but what made me never want to play it again was that it wasn't "dressed up" enough for me. The flowchart style of the main board is a total turn off. If there was some way of redoing the mainboard so that it looked like an actual fantasy map with all sorts of features, akin to a map from the Heroes of Might and Magic computer game, then I'd be pretty excited about it.

Also get rid of player elimination and make it run no longer than four hours and it would be great. Being able to march across a fantasy land, mustering an army of monsters and then zooming in for battles sounds great, it just has to get away from an analytic play style and fit in with modern standards of game play length.
 
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Drake Storm
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Thanks for the replies.

I'm glad not too many people said they love the massive die rolling since that is the first thing I removed from my "Euro-Titan" design attempt. I actually kind of like the die rolling, but in order to streamline the game, things need to be cut.

I knew people would like the tactical maps/battles, but as one person noted, once you've played the game alot you can pretty much tell how the battles are going to turn out (barring some lucky/unlucky rolling). The mini-battles are still a big part of the game, so I can't cut them out completely, just need a good way to shave the time down dramatically.

Player Elimination - most Euro-Games don't have it so I figure I can just have Victory Points instead (like getting X points based on the power of your Titan, and maybe Y points for each tower you control, etc. so even if your titan dies you still have a slim chance of winning).

The main map board is the biggest problem. It would be nice to have a few more options when moving legions around, but even as is where you can usually only move to 1 or 2 places, it can take a lot of time to do a turn. If you could now have 3-4 places to move, that could double the thinking time, especially for slower players. I guess I have my work cut out for me.

Thanks again.
 
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Sat Elg
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Drake, just going to throw out an idea for trimming things down.

I agree with the game length issues. Reducing dice/# of units in a stack will both reduce gametime, looking at this area what immediately comes to mind for me is idea of "Stack Modifiers" instead of actual units.

For instance say you have a unit max of 5 in a stack, instead of mustering for a better or second unit you could acquire say a weapon to add to your stack, say a "Sword" that would add +1 to die rolls for a unit.

You could then muster that "sword" into a "banner" that would add +1 to die rolls for all your units etc.

***
Also have you ever played the computer game Disciples? In that game the tactical combat portion consists of only 2 rows (3 spaces in each row), with the front row being able to directly attack the opposing front row, and the back row being for spellcasters/ranged weapons. Even within such a limited space the game allowed for some interesting decisions in unit makeup and placement, and I think implementing something like that for Titan would be a good balance between time and playability. If you haven't played i'd suggest you download a demo of the game.

Goodluck with your game

Steve



 
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Brian Bankler
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DrakeStorm wrote:

I knew people would like the tactical maps/battles, but as one person noted, once you've played the game alot you can pretty much tell how the battles are going to turn out (barring some lucky/unlucky rolling). The mini-battles are still a big part of the game, so I can't cut them out completely, just need a good way to shave the time down dramatically.


Sure, I have a feel for the battles now that I've played hundreds of games. But if the battles weren't there, would I have played hundreds of games?
 
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Steve Hope
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Also, even after you have a good sense of the game, there are going to be LOTS of times when you need to fight a battle. Sure we can negotiate a solution to 7 Gorgons attacking 7 Rangers in the plains, but there will be other times where I REALLY want to kill your Wyvern and there is no way you're going to offer it in a negotiated settlement. In those cases the only resolution is generally to fight. And you can have a fair number of those in the midgame.
 
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