Recommend
20 
 Thumb up
 Hide
29 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

Firefly: The Game» Forums » Reviews

Subject: It's Cool to Hate Firefly (Edit) rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Mike Bennett
United States
Michigan
flag msg tools
Tom Vasel said something stupid while talking about the Firefly Game.

He said that the theme was sort of just tacked on. Wow, that is not true. For starters, in case you've done no research the money was the same designer as the show. Yea. It's DRIPPING with theme.

Does that mean that Firefly is an average game with an extremely good theme? In as much as Arkham maybe. Arkham horror isn't competitive, has loads of dice rolling and card flipping. The dice rolling is mitigated by equipment that you can find at certain shops and there is a deck of events.

These mechanics are all used and used much better in Firefly.

For one each test is a die six that is rerolled on 6. there are three types of tests and your equipment and crew (that can be found in theme appropriate locations in the "Verse") and you get to pick from a couple options (maybe three) and the savvy space cowboy with the most well rounded crew and ship is going to tackle the misbehave deck (basically little events required for most illegal jobs) with grace.

There is little player interaction, but one of the best things is that if after a job you don't pay your crew they become disgruntled (this happens again they leave the ship) and if you happen to be in the same space as an opponent with that has disgruntled crew, you can actually buy them away from them.

This keeps arguing over who gets Jayne to a minimum.

Besides the basics, like the components are great with thick cardboard and Tom Vasel approved paper money, Firefly is worth the $32 it costs at cool stuff.

I see a lot of reviews screaming this isn't a good game. It is. It's better than ok it's great. Nothing is broken, it feels thematic, even if you have no idea who these people are. You get the sense, like the show, of a western in space.

If you are rushing to your keyboard to correct me, fine. But I do have another point: not everyone has Merchants of Venus. Not everyone has a good game based on a property. This is no worse than Battlestar and in fact it's better. Ok it's not better but it is easier.

I've played Battlestar and never seen the show. I've had the option to get Battlestar a lot and pass on it because, as much as I like the game, it's a little much. I always felt a bit overwhelmed by the ship and the theme to really get a good game in.

I'd say Firefly is a much easier game for non fans than Battlestar.

Anyway, overall it's great. If you like the show at all, get this game. It works smooth, it's getting expansions as we speak and it's not very expensive.

The bad.

It's long. This game is going to take a few hours with new players. I can see getting the game down to about 2 hours a person assuming everyone knows what they want to do.

They added a scenario on their website looks like a good intro to the game. Use this for new players!

Also the rules are crappy. If you want to learn how to play this game properly, play the solo game a few times. The main issue with the rules is they are laid out from start to finish. This is the first rule book I've seen without any reference pages. I had to reread the thing a few times.

But honestly this is just a little gripe. There are much worse games out there.

Edit:

Yeesh, you know I like Tom a lot, but he says a lot of stupid things. We all do. Relax a bit huh?

I've had some more time with the game and I know what it reminds me of more than anything else, it's Runebound. It functions very much like Fantasy Flight's fantasy adventure game. It has a fixed board, upgrades to different aspects of the character/ship and crew. It's dice rolling mitigated with stat boosts there are random encounters that might totally screw you over if you are not prepared.

I thank you for your comments, sorry about the grammar issues I normally don't do text only and I just didn't proof read this. Frankly I didn't expect a bunch of people to take me so seriously.

This is games still right people? I stand by the fact that it's a solid game and maybe I can report more in the future.

But chances are I'll not be posting here again and slink back to games no one plays.
26 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve Walker
United Kingdom
Liphook
Hampshire
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
Nice review - I have not played the game yet - my copy is on pre-order from Amazon over here in the UK - I do have MoV and am still looking forward to firefly - at the price if it hits the table once or twice in the next 6 months and a group of people spend a couple of hours quoting the show and having fun it will have earned its entry fee.

My only concern is the promos - it seems it is pretty damn hard to get hold of them and I am worried this will detract from the gameplay if they add essential elements - do you have a feel for this?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Darrell Hanning
United States
Jacksonville
Florida
flag msg tools
badge
We will meet at the Hour of Scampering.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
He didn't exactly say the theme was tacked on.

What he said was that the game designers had, in putting the theme into the game, focused on making the game about all the places and items in the show, without actually putting the heart of the show in, which is the situations the crew get into, and how they resolve them. Instead of that, we have "skill tests" which, in the few moments it takes to conduct a roll, actually represents (according to Tom) the majority of what actually happens in the show.

In that sense, the boardgame Firefly is "just another pick-up-and-deliver" game, according to Tom.

And in all fairness, I see his point. The TV show really is about the adventures and escapades that the crew find themselves in, and none of that really gets transported into the game. What we are left with is a laundry list of items from the show, layered over the top of a pretty standard pick-up-and-delivery mechanism.

Now, I happen to think (and Tom also stated something to this effect) that - for those who are big fans of the show (such as myself) - this is good enough for us to see the game as quite enjoyable. And I do see it as quite enjoyable. But I also see Tom's point - there are no real dilemmas or puzzles or such to solve in the game, to get out of trouble (or into worse trouble). You're basically just shopping for crew and equipment, then fulfilling contracts (that usually entail going to point A, then point B).

Strip out all the theme, and as a pick-up-and-deliver game, it doesn't compare all that well to others.

But worse than that, the game really doesn't bring out what's best about the show. Then again, it might take something more like an RPG to actually do that. So, in that regard, I think Tom might be asking pigs to sing.
54 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Philip Thomas
United Kingdom
London
London
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
The promos add nothing- certainly nothing essential. 5 cards which replace cards in the base game by making already good characters better, 1 forgettable equipment card, and bits for a 5th player, which- given play time of 2 hours with 4 players- is probably pushing it.

Although maybe the cool promos had already been given away by the time I arrived and I'm confusing promos with expansions. Since they were charging for the things I picked up, I guess they're not really promos...

Have yet to play game though so a pinch of salt applies.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Nonovyobidnis
msg tools
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
Tom is entitled to his opinion.

Calling it stupid is hardly constructive.

I am most interested if you or a friend of yours have a financial interest in the Firefly game - as your review sounds to me like you are selling something.
11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ed G.
United States
Fort Wayne
Indiana
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
philbuni wrote:


For starters, in case you've done no research the money was the same designer as the show.


What does this mean?

Poorly-written and rambling with an axe to grind. Thanks for the reminder to participate in moderating more frequently.
12 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
And so is this reviewer (entitled to his opinion). I highly doubt that the reviewer is trying to "attack" Tom, which seems to bother you for some reason.

Reviews are what they are, some one's opinion. Try not to let it upset you so much and you'll be a lot happier here at the site - just a tip for a newuser.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim Kane
United States
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
I honestly think that if the box said 3 hours instead of 2 hours, the reviews about this game would be completely different than they have been. It plays longer than 2 hours and creates a false expectation. The downtime isn't very interactive, which is my 1 minor gripe about the game, and that downtime can make it seem very long for a 2 hour game.... but if you are expecting it to be a 3 hour game you can sit back and enjoy just how much theme is packed into this box. Every card is high quality and dripping with the Firefly universe. The game mechanics may not be groundbreaking but it is well balanced and makes sense thematically. I thought the game was a lot of fun and when we played this in my local gaming group all 3 other players purchased a copy of the game including 1 who had never seen the show.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robbie M.
United States
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
Ursus_Major wrote:
philbuni wrote:


For starters, in case you've done no research the money was the same designer as the show.


What does this mean?

Poorly-written and rambling with an axe to grind. Thanks for the reminder to participate in moderating more frequently.


That statement made me stumble too. I think he means that the currency from the game is based on the prop money designed for the show.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joshua Harris
United States
Oshkosh
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
roborob wrote:
Ursus_Major wrote:
philbuni wrote:


For starters, in case you've done no research the money was the same designer as the show.


What does this mean?

Poorly-written and rambling with an axe to grind. Thanks for the reminder to participate in moderating more frequently.


That statement made me stumble too. I think he means that the currency from the game is based on the prop money designed for the show.


Actually, it's designed by the same person who designed the prop money from the show, not just copies of screen used items. That said, it only really matters to super geek fans of the show, and has nothing else to do with gameplay, theme, or anything else being discussed here. (unless someone was trying to say that the designers weren't doing justice to the Firefly universe, and this was brought up as a detail counterpoint... but no one has ever levied that argument that I have seen.)
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Todd Kauk
Canada
Winnipeg
Manitoba
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
I don't agree that Tom said something "stupid". He stated his honest opinion which you may or may not agree with. There was a couple things in your review that didn't make sense to me as I read through it.

First, the money comment that has already been discussed in the above responses.

Second, you mention 2 hours per player...that seems like an awfully loooooong game. I'm not sure if that's what you meant.

I love the show and think the game looks fine enough. I think it's fair for people to have positive and negative reviews of games, coloured by their own experiences and preferences.


Todd
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Carlson
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
I really enjoy the Dice Tower and I thank Tom and Eric for all that they do. But lets face it - Tom and Eric don't always agree with each other - there's no way any one of us is always going to agree with them. Hell, Tom even says as much on his top 100 videos.

Firefly isn't the tightest game I've ever played, and some of Tom's concerns are legit. I don't agree that the events in this game are "crippling". The worst thing that can happen is that the Reaver can kill a couple of your crew, or that you can lose the contraband/fugitives you need to complete a job, and there are ways to restore them. They just aren't easy.

I also think it's wrong to say that the theme is tacked on. Yes, the episodes of Firefly were about the adventures of the crew, the "misbehaving" so to speak, but the crew did "pick up and deliver" to keep their ship running in the show. They took jobs that were crime, transport, smuggling, etc... to get paid, keep the ship fueled and generally in decent working order, and put processed food in their bellies. Saying that the Firefly game lacks theme because it's all about pickup and deliver is like saying that Battlestar Galactica lacks theme because it's all about trying to find Earth.

It's a good, but not great, game, that cranks up to an excellent game if you really love the Firefly universe. I picked this game up because my wife loves Firefly, I love everything Joss Whedon puts his hands on, and I figure I could run it at conventions and the Browncoats would flock to my table. It does what it does very well.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Cameron Chien
United States
Rancho Cucamonga
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
philbuni wrote:
For one each test is a die six that is rerolled on 6.

I've never heard anyone refer to a six-sided die as a "die six". That said, your review is fairly decent in content, but lacking in terms of grammar, punctuation and formatting.

Also, it seems like you're one of those people that thinks that their opinion is law, and everyone else is "stupid".

You might want to consider that next time someone doesn't have the same fervor for a game you obviously feel compelled to defend. It's one thing if a reviewer gets some important rules wrong. It's another entirely if their opinion of the game, as a whole, differs from yours.

Cameron
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris in Kansai
Japan
Otsu
Shiga
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
philbuni wrote:
Tom Vasel said something stupid while talking



Cool, he does it too then!!
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Kearns
United States
Bloomington
Indiana
flag msg tools
Silence is golden.
badge
Your sea is so great and my boat is so small.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Re: It's Cool to Hate Firefly
Whoa.

"Get it down to 2 hours per person"?

Get it down from WHAT?
7 
 Thumb up
0.05
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rich S.
United States
Seymour
Connecticut
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I just played this game yesterday at a group for the first time. The scenario card said 2 hrs. We played with four players and three of us had not played the game before and we did it in about 3 hrs, not including set-up time. We spent some time going over the rules so that added to the length and there were some pauses as we checked some minor rules. Honestly from the time the box lid came off to the time it was put back on, almost 4. It would definitely go faster with experienced players since the need to teach the game wouldn't be there.

I thought it played great. Sure, nothing groundbreaking. At it's core you could get the same game with Free Trader. I am a fan of the show so no complaints about the theme here. Everything was done really well and I couldn't stop quoting the show as we played.

I will agree with one criticism, though. All of the excitement from the show (the gun battles, the reavers, the bickering and bargaining etc.) is done in the game through a dice roll. In the original pilot there's a shootout with Patience. It would have been neat to play that out in the game, or a similar event, with cards or abilities. What we get is a Misbehave card with two different options and sometimes a way to bypass it altogether. One example is we could talk and do a communication roll or try and shoot our way out and do a gun roll. The higher you roll the better, of course, and you can stack yourself by buying crew, gear and upgrades to give you bonuses towards these rolls. For example I had so many guns with my crew and gear that I automatically passed every gun roll I needed. But that's the one problem I agree with. Whether it's dealing with reavers or Misbehave cards or ship breakdowns or having a "gun battle" it all comes down to rolling a die and hoping you get it high enough. Like I said you can strategize and stack your ship and crew to pass these rolls, but it's less than what I would have wanted.

I ended up writing more than I meant too so let me just explain. No there is too much. Let me sum up.
I love the show. I loved playing the game. I want this game and will definitely play it again despite any shortcomings it has.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike Bennett
United States
Michigan
flag msg tools
Rathanor wrote:

I ended up writing more than I meant too so let me just explain. No there is too much. Let me sum up.
I love the show. I loved playing the game. I want this game and will definitely play it again despite any shortcomings it has.


And it's only $33 bucks at CoolStuff. I think if it were like an $60 dollar game it'd be a decent deal. Though at that price I'd have wanted the extra and more varied ships.

The expansions will do a LOT for this game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Walt
United States
Orange County
California
flag msg tools
Before terraforming Mars, Surviving Mars is required: Paradox Interactive; Steam.
badge
Please contact me about board gaming in Orange County.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
dkearns wrote:
Whoa.

"Get it down to 2 hours per person"?

Get it down from WHAT?

I played with four experienced gamers, using the recommended mission pictured in the manual. We played four hours and almost got to the first of the three goals.

I think the next two goals would have gone faster, but it's hard to judge: the large number of misbehaving cards needed makes it tough; you cannot have all seven professions and all seven gear and be high in all three skills, except maybe in a solo game, with a nine-member crew. And whatever the goal, seemingly anything can happen misbehaving; you may be safe for the goal test, but if you lose any misbehaving encounter, you have to start the goal over.

Kind of related to that, you need that kind of big crew to tackle any of the illegal and immoral runs, which probably means you'll disgruntle someone--which means you cannot do it near an opponent who would swoop in to grab your disgruntled crew--and that big crew is damn expensive if you're going to pay them (though if you can do the job and then give them shore leave, well, that costs you an action!) So, one strategy is a light crew running legal jobs until you have enough socked away to hire a bunch of crew, buy a bunch of gear, and finish all the goals.

That said, my only mechanical quibble is that when you're flying, which you do most of the time, you need one hand to move your ship, a second hand to draw nav cards, and a third hand to roll the likely encounter(s); and then you have to count up the skill needed for the encounter(s), consider your crew and gear, decide on your action, roll, add--and that tends to drive how many spaces you've flown out of your memory. Also beginners tend to be drawing from the wrong nav deck.

That aside, pick some goals and do them. Firefly is a bit more than pick up and deliver, and a lot more (and shorter) than Arkham Horror. Shiny!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joel Tamburo
United States
Justice
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Actually you don't reroll on a roll of 6. You roll again and add that value to the '6' you rolled. Big difference and especially because some of the characters actually mess with that mechanic - and not always in a good way.

As to whether it is a Pick up and deliver game, I would say ultimately no it is not. SOME of the jobs are like that but others are not. If anything it is more like a questing game (a la Runequest). You get the job and basically do what the job card says to do - if you do it successfully you get the money. And you win by doing whatever the Goals sections on the Story Card tells you to do - which typically involves combinations of paying money, skill checks and other items.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim McMahon
United States
West Springfield
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
badge
Lookee what he can do! He wants a job!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Tall_Walt wrote:
That said, my only mechanical quibble is that when you're flying, which you do most of the time, you need one hand to move your ship, a second hand to draw nav cards, and a third hand to roll the likely encounter(s); and then you have to count up the skill needed for the encounter(s), consider your crew and gear, decide on your action, roll, add--and that tends to drive how many spaces you've flown out of your memory. Also beginners tend to be drawing from the wrong nav deck.
During our first game, it took almost no time at all for us to determine we should have the active player doing the ship moving, a different player drawing the cards (while keeping in mind to draw from the correct deck) and a third player keeping track of the number of spaces moved.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ryan Cole
United States
Lake Jackson
Texas
flag msg tools
Tall_Walt wrote:
dkearns wrote:
Whoa.

"Get it down to 2 hours per person"?

Get it down from WHAT?

I played with four experienced gamers, using the recommended mission pictured in the manual. We played four hours and almost got to the first of the three goals.


I did a double take at first, until I realized you were all unfamiliar with the game. This is definitely a game that lets you flounder if you choose. I had played half of one game of solitaire previously, and starting fresh with a total of 3 gamers we finished the 'beginner' mission in about 2.5 hours (close race). We had the benefit of less players, and knowledge of which missions and stores to focus on at first, but 4 hours for almost getting to the first goal seems awfully long to me. If you don't know any better, you can run jobs that are way too advanced, and spend every turn wasting fuel or failing, instead of progressing through the entry-level stuff and working up to Niske (or just leaving that evil bugger alone).

Towards the end of our game, we started following the suggestion in the rules regarding the Wash's dinosaur. If someone was performing their second action as a 'buy' or 'deal', we passed the dinosaur and the next player started their turn while the current one went shopping. Made a nice difference, especially since sometimes play made it back to the original player who was still trying to pick his cards.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Carlson
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I suspect there is a high correlation between people unsatisfied with the long playtime their first time through and those that took the rulebook suggestion to play "King of all Londonium" their first game.

I like Firefly quite a bit, but that one sentence in the rulebook is possibly the worst idea I've ever seen in a game, including "Hey, let's play Fluxx!". Fortunately, podcasts like The Dice Tower warned me off of that one before I ever acquired the game. Unfortunately, I'm probably the exception and not the rule.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Walt
United States
Orange County
California
flag msg tools
Before terraforming Mars, Surviving Mars is required: Paradox Interactive; Steam.
badge
Please contact me about board gaming in Orange County.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hallgrim wrote:
Towards the end of our game, we started following the suggestion in the rules regarding the Wash's dinosaur. If someone was performing their second action as a 'buy' or 'deal', we passed the dinosaur and the next player started their turn while the current one went shopping. Made a nice difference, especially since sometimes play made it back to the original player who was still trying to pick his cards.

So did we, but with four, we very often were in line at the same station for jobs or for crew and equipment, so we had to go in sequence. And, really, at that point we knew what we wanted; it was just a matter of running around the board grabbing it--though we never saw the bottom of some decks. But also, it's 50/50: if you're buying on your first action, intending to fly away, you can't save any time. And the player who passes the dino can't be flipping nav cards to make moving faster. These are (IMO) band-aids on fiddly mechanics.

I was doing pretty routine, legal stuff; that paid okay with a small crew. But as midnight approached, I tried to get through the first goal, with too light a crew and too little money. Another player tried the same and also failed. In both cases, one hard Misbehaving dropped us below the minimum money needed for the goal. robot The game takes as long as it takes: trying to rush just slows you down.

It's not a game I would mind playing for six hours--but not until 2am. The time on the box it just way off except for very experienced players who know where all the hundreds of bits are and how tough Misbehaving is. I realize GF9 has now supplied a training mission, but still, I think a box time that reflects only experienced players--well, it leads to bad situations like the one we had: not near done, over-tired after work, and needing to drive home to get too little sleep before work the next day.

Hiding rules deep in the rulebook doesn't help. We completely botched the whole warrant/Harkin(sp?) mechanic. That did make things a bit faster, though. I talked with someone who was saying why even have the Alliance or Reavers? I can only conclude they were seriously misplaying something.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Neil Logan
Scotland
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Tall_Walt wrote:
...that tends to drive how many spaces you've flown out of your memory.


Don't flip them straight into their discard pile, just make a temporary pile (2 if required to draw from both decks) of flipped cards until your movement is over. Once you have resolved nav cards equal to your movement put them on the discard pile.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Walt
United States
Orange County
California
flag msg tools
Before terraforming Mars, Surviving Mars is required: Paradox Interactive; Steam.
badge
Please contact me about board gaming in Orange County.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Logan8 wrote:
Tall_Walt wrote:
...that tends to drive how many spaces you've flown out of your memory.

Don't flip them straight into their discard pile, just make a temporary pile (2 if required to draw from both decks) of flipped cards until your movement is over. Once you have resolved nav cards equal to your movement put them on the discard pile.

Yes, some of us ended up fanning them out so the number could be easily seen. Still, some players really wanted to draw their own cards, so they were shifting their focus among their ship, their tableau, and the nav decks.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.