Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 Hide
79 Posts
1 , 2 , 3 , 4  Next »   | 

Clash of Cultures» Forums » General

Subject: How valid are the criticisms? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Steve G.
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
I was watching the Miami Dice review to leanr about CoC and try and decide whether or not to purchase it. Seems they had a few notable criticisms, but of course they are only going on one or two sessions before moving on to the next game. What do you gusy think of their criticisms?

1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.

Thanks in advance.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Einmal ist keinmal
United States
Andover
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
badge
Non fui, fui, non sum, non curo
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
1. This doesn't bother me at all. Each game, you can take your civ in any direction you choose. The techs will make your civ different from your opponents.

2. Some randomness, but nothing that is going to determine who wins the game. Want to make sure you win the combat? Then take more troops. Don't have overwhelming odds, then you accept that risk.

3. I disagree here as well. Each objective has two ways of scoring. Is one of them difficult to obtain? Then work towards the other one.

4. No idea. I don't own the game, but the copy I played on didn't seem to have any issues with the plastic.

13 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Les Marshall
United States
Woodinville
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
steveg700 wrote:
I was watching the Miami Dice review to leanr about CoC and try and decide whether or not to purchase it. Seems they had a few notable criticisms, but of course they are only going on one or two sessions before moving on to the next game. What do you gusy think of their criticisms?

1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.

Thanks in advance.


1) Civ's are generic. They become differentiated based on what advances you buy and in what order. This isn't unusual in civ games.

2) Range of results is actually rather small. As Patrick above notes, taking more troops is pretty good insurance you'll get the desired result. This feels like the criticism of someone who just plain doesn't like dice.

3) Objectives are random but, they only represent part of the victory point sources in the game. They also provide variability in the game and incentives outside player control to expand in different directions. I actually like this feature.

4) Meh. Plastic isn't fantastic. I generally prefer counters anyway. They're good enough to play with.

Frankly these criticisms, on the whole, just represent personal preference. I think the game does a pretty good job considering it can be played in about 3 hours. Our group can sometimes get in two games in a night which just isn't possible with most civ games.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Moe45673
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
Civs start out with unique objective cards. Already, each Civ has a unique direction to work towards. (The expansion is real, btw)

Combat can be mitigated. Certain advances, action cards, plus plain ol "have more warriors" helps quite a bit. Also, playing a defensive game is stronger than an aggressive offensive.

Objectives are random..... but don't try to achieve all of them. Few players do. Try to achieve 3-4 out of the 6 and attempt other ways at getting points, like wonders. Plus, as has been mentioned, all objectives give you a choice of one of two ways to fulfill.

The plastic is serviceable but it won't win any awards. The only thing I did was glue the sails into the ships, now I'm quite happy with them. I don't think the plastic is crappy.

They also had other complaints, like how Sam had barbarians spawn all around him. This is about as big a problem as it is in the videogame ie plunder the heckies outta them. There's loot in them savage's dwellings

7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Cameron McKenzie
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Combat is much less random than in many games. It is very uncommon to lose a battle if you have superior numbers, and usually it is just a question of how many armies you lose in the course of winning.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Santi Velasco
Spain
Mairena del Aljarafe
Seville
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
steveg700 wrote:
1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

This is not a flaw, but a design goal. You all start off with small primitive villages, and grow from there in diverging paths, so it's up to you to develop your own distinct culture. The expansion currently in the works goes the other way by dealing each player one of the popular ancient civs from the start: vikings, greeks and so on. So, once the expansion is out, you could say that you got the best of both worlds.

Quote:
2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

I don't know what do they mean by "too dicey". Combat is resolved rolling dice, yes; it's the same system as in Mare Nostrum. You have the chance to use combat cards to increase your odds, though (provided you have the required tech):


Quote:
3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

Again they're random, yes, but the "too" part is subjective. They are randomly drawn from a deck but each card has 2 objectives, a peaceful one and the other one is about warfare, here are some examples:



Also, there are certain techs and cards that allow you to change objective cards or drawing more of them.

Quote:
4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.


Kind of, yes

To be honest (although not FFG-quality by any means) they're pretty much functional except for the yellow soldiers which used to sweat a lot (you can find the yellow goo story here in the forums), but apparently the issue has been corrected in the second print. On the other hand, the building sculpts are gorgeous.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Emeryville
California
flag msg tools
badge
Sometimes life is scary and dark. That is why we must find the light. -BMO
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I have been a very big fan of Tom and Co for many years, but their CoC review ranks as one of their worst. Believe it or not, but the Dice Tower puts out truly terrible reviews from time to time that actually mis-characterize games and spread bad information about them. Sadly, this is one of those infrequent lapses.

It's hard to encapsulate, but it is very clear that the game was rushed to the table, it was only played once (maaaaybe twice by Tom), and that they had little understanding of the game. Most of the criticisms show they were not in a position to comment.

The quality of the plastic is the only valid concern I see from the points you brought up. It is below average for troops. The buildings are fine.

I recommend you check out Joel Eddy's review. It's far better.
14 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Millette
United States
Henderson
Nevada
flag msg tools
badge
God Bless the USA
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This game is on sale today (11-26) at CoolStuffInc.com for $45.99 (Daily Deal). If you want to pull the trigger, then today would be the day...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Pratt
United States
Anacortes
Washington
flag msg tools
badge
Just admit it already, Small World is not a fantasy wargame...it's a Mancala variant!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
1. I like this feature. Everyone starts with the same proto-civization and only your decisions determine where you end up. Traditionally, Civ games have preassigned advantages that can really railroad your strategy. I appreciate the added flavor that system provides, but having everything be wide open at the start of the game is a very refreshing take on the genre.

2. I'd say this system has less dicey results than most dice based combat systems. Throw 2 dice and you hit 80+ percent of the time. Seems pretty predictable to me...without being too deterministic. (There are also ways to guarantee hits, if you wish to pursue them.)

3. As others have stated, that while these are random they do a very nice job of forcing the players to behave in a non-linear manner. You can't go into a game with a set strategy, you have to adapt to your objectives. Occasionally a good hand of related objectives can allow a player to make a big point grab, but keep in mind that this is a four player game in which the rules allow things to go on above the table like diplomacy, trading and deal making. People often forget this, or miss the bits on trading culture and mood tokens or other resources that are in the rulebook. If one person has an explosive turn and the rest of the table doesn't respond, well than shame on YOU. You're not playing it right.

4. The melting plastic was a first edition problem. It's been rectified.

In short, this is one of the best 4X games to come out in years. It's remarkably streamlined considering the subject matter. I can't recommend it enough.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
alan beaumont
United Kingdom
LONDON
Unspecified
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
What kind of a deal? A DEAL deal!
steveg700 wrote:
3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

Nobody seems to have mentioned that you can trade these with an opponent if they look improbable. After a couple of games you will find both more ways to achieve things and lose all inhibition about trading away the dross.
9 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
D. Barrera
Spain
Barcelona
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
steveg700 wrote:
I was watching the Miami Dice review to leanr about CoC and try and decide whether or not to purchase it. Seems they had a few notable criticisms, but of course they are only going on one or two sessions before moving on to the next game. What do you gusy think of their criticisms?

1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.

Thanks in advance.


1) The Civ's dont' really feel generic, they ARE generic. I really don't see a problem with that since they evolve as the game goes by, so everybody's civ starts equal but ends up different.

2) Combat is not too dicey, Eclipse is dicier and even that is not too dicey. I really enjoyed the combat system in CoC, battles are short and most of the time you know what's gonna happen but there are some surprises.

3) Objectives being random is what really made the game for me, every game you have something different to aim to. Just think of this as the chaos in life, chaotic yes, but makes the ride fun and filled with variety and surprises.

4) Plastic is OK but the game is awesome.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls

Ottawa
Ontario
msg tools
Avatar
Misterboy wrote:
I have been a very big fan of Tom and Co for many years, but their CoC review ranks as one of their worst. Believe it or not, but the Dice Tower puts out truly terrible reviews from time to time that actually mis-characterize games and spread bad information about them. Sadly, this is one of those infrequent lapses.

It's hard to encapsulate, but it is very clear that the game was rushed to the table, it was only played once (maaaaybe twice by Tom), and that they had little understanding of the game. Most of the criticisms show they were not in a position to comment.

The quality of the plastic is the only valid concern I see from the points you brought up. It is below average for troops. The buildings are fine.

I recommend you check out Joel Eddy's review. It's far better.


I love the boardgamegeek attitude that seems to infect people whenever they read a review they don't agree with. It seems a little silly to suggest a reviewer didn't understand the game simply because they didn't enjoy it. But, then again, people seem to take criticism of games they enjoy as personal attacks on themselves.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Brown
United States
Parker
Colorado
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Do not own and have not played CoC but criticism 1 is the reason this game is very high in my want list.
Everything I've seen and heard about CoC gives me a sandboxy feel. The idea of starting off with a primitive culture and going the direction I want to go is very appealing. The idea of having defined civs that are channeled down an initial path doesn't really appeal to me.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joseph Cochran
United States
Costa Mesa
California
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmb
steveg700 wrote:
1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.


1) It's a symmetric start, yes. But Civ games are one of the few types of games where symmetric is perceived as "generic." There are many games where everyone starts the same, and IMO it's refreshing to have a game where no matter what civ you are you have a blank slate from which to build your civilization. So I don't see this in and of itself as a problem. Yes, the designer has indicated that asymmetric civs (leaders or powers or something) will be in an expansion, but I personally wouldn't consider the symmetric start a problem.

2) "Too dicey?" Each person makes one roll in a combat and as others have noted the number of armies and techs you have bring a lot to the battle. One of the reasons I got this game was because of how relatively simple the combat was without being horribly random.

3) The objectives look hard or overwhelming because you get them so early before you can do much about them (and some of them might dictate some play you don't want), but it's rare in our games for someone to have more than one incomplete one at the end, and usually that's by choice for some other points. If the criticism is "they're too random therefore you can get screwed by objectives that you cannot complete" I call shenanigans on that. They're almost always achievable. If the criticism is "they're too random therefore you have to alter your play from what you wanted in order to achieve them," then I hope those aren't the same people complaining in #1, since they are an element of asymmetry that you do see from the start.

4) They're replacing the badly manufactured plastic. Some people will still call what was produced crappy, but it serves the purpose well.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Emeryville
California
flag msg tools
badge
Sometimes life is scary and dark. That is why we must find the light. -BMO
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
broken clock wrote:
Misterboy wrote:
I have been a very big fan of Tom and Co for many years, but their CoC review ranks as one of their worst. Believe it or not, but the Dice Tower puts out truly terrible reviews from time to time that actually mis-characterize games and spread bad information about them. Sadly, this is one of those infrequent lapses.

It's hard to encapsulate, but it is very clear that the game was rushed to the table, it was only played once (maaaaybe twice by Tom), and that they had little understanding of the game. Most of the criticisms show they were not in a position to comment.

The quality of the plastic is the only valid concern I see from the points you brought up. It is below average for troops. The buildings are fine.

I recommend you check out Joel Eddy's review. It's far better.


I love the boardgamegeek attitude that seems to infect people whenever they read a review they don't agree with. It seems a little silly to suggest a reviewer didn't understand the game simply because they didn't enjoy it. But, then again, people seem to take criticism of games they enjoy as personal attacks on themselves.


I'm going to assume you are not accusing me of this "attitude" you describe. While I agree is a strangely common phenomenon, it doesn't apply to me, or my post in any way. Suggesting it does shows a complete lack of understanding of the situation.

For clarification, Tom's review was actually positive. The problem is that it spread a lot of misinformation about the game, getting some important details wrong.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jonathan Challis
United Kingdom
Hungerford
West Berkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Largely, this is all subjective - one man's too random is another's too deterministic, etc.

The quick summary is I disagree with all the comments and the game is how it should be, but obviously tastes vary. Then again, I mostly don't like the same games as Tom anyway...

steveg700 wrote:

1) Civ's feel generic: It appears there's an expansion in the works that addresses this. Hope it's for real.

Yes they are, and to me generic is a plus. If it's not for you then yes, the expansion fixes this.

steveg700 wrote:

2) Combat is too dicey: Apparently, dice rolls are divided by 5, after modifiers, which can make those modifiers feel like just tie-breakers.

I disagree, but then is your benchmark something 100% deterministic like Civilization, versus something very random like Age of Mythology or TI3?

I'd say that this is about the sweet spot, and it's not very random, and you get about the results you pay for. There's a few good/bad luck swings which again I think is a good factor, but mostly you get the results you expect looking at the probabilities before the fight. If you want less risk, go in with more troops, it's simple.

steveg700 wrote:

3) Objectives too random: Is there some way to cycle or redraw these?

No official way, although you could house-rule a draw several and keep some rule. That said, you are not expected to play them all, so the random is about in the sweetspot for me - think of it as being dealt a selection to pick from.

steveg700 wrote:

4) Plastic is kind of crappy: This review is old enough that their might have been a change in production. One can hope anyway.


Plastic is always crappy, and I'd prefer wooden cubes, but for this kind of game it's the standard. There's been a production problem with the yellow plastic 'oozing' after 6-12 months on the older print runs (now fixed, and free replacements available) otherwise I'd say it's identical plastic to most AT games I own.

The ooze problem has been solved (although we won't know for sure for a year I guess), but otherwise the plastic is no more or less crappy than any similar game by FFG or Eagle, and no it won't get any better. Depends what your benchmark and expectation is?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Moe45673
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
broken clock wrote:
Misterboy wrote:
I have been a very big fan of Tom and Co for many years, but their CoC review ranks as one of their worst. Believe it or not, but the Dice Tower puts out truly terrible reviews from time to time that actually mis-characterize games and spread bad information about them. Sadly, this is one of those infrequent lapses.

It's hard to encapsulate, but it is very clear that the game was rushed to the table, it was only played once (maaaaybe twice by Tom), and that they had little understanding of the game. Most of the criticisms show they were not in a position to comment.

The quality of the plastic is the only valid concern I see from the points you brought up. It is below average for troops. The buildings are fine.

I recommend you check out Joel Eddy's review. It's far better.


I love the boardgamegeek attitude that seems to infect people whenever they read a review they don't agree with. It seems a little silly to suggest a reviewer didn't understand the game simply because they didn't enjoy it. But, then again, people seem to take criticism of games they enjoy as personal attacks on themselves.


I hear what you're saying but I agree with Misterboy. I've discovered new tactics and strategies on my 4th play, 9th play, etc. Once you think you've solved the game, you can switch it up (or be persuaded to due to terrain, objectives, etc) and discover a new strategy to pursue that works just as well (or better) as your old way.

In this sense, the game has a lot of layers to uncover and therefore the game can seem a lot shallower than it is after a game or two, which Tom and friends seem to have done. Like I said in my earlier post, they complained about barbarians spawning all around Sam; something experienced players LOVE when it happens to them. Most of their other complaints were likewise without merit.

There's a difference between thinking a review sucks because they didn't love your game and thinking a review sucks because their criticisms were flat out due to inexperience and misreading the strategies inherent in the game.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rafael Ramus
msg tools
designer
Deus Vult
badge
Gloria in excelsis Deo
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Try watching the Drivethru Review. It sold me the game, and it is now my favorite Civ. game ever.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/video/24954/clash-of-cultures/d...
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alex P
France
La Plaine St-Denis
Ile-de-France
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I think #1 and #3 cancel each other out. The objectives each civ receives, obligates them to develop differently.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
R.J.
United States
Citrus Heights
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Shocked no one else mentioned that a show called Miami Dice, from The Dice Tower, had a problem with combat being too dicey (which it isn't, see every single response above).
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Pratt
United States
Anacortes
Washington
flag msg tools
badge
Just admit it already, Small World is not a fantasy wargame...it's a Mancala variant!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
breakaway11 wrote:
Shocked no one else mentioned that a show called Miami Dice, from The Dice Tower, had a problem with combat being too dicey (which it isn't, see every single response above).


The OP mentioned it...It's sort of the basis for this whole thread. whistle
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve G.
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
Thansk for the replies. To receive so many detailed defenses of CoC speaks well of it.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
R.J.
United States
Citrus Heights
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
vladdswrath wrote:
breakaway11 wrote:
Shocked no one else mentioned that a show called Miami Dice, from The Dice Tower, had a problem with combat being too dicey (which it isn't, see every single response above).


The OP mentioned it...It's sort of the basis for this whole thread. whistle


You missed my point.

Miami Dice from The Dice Tower thinks the combat is too dicey?
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Pratt
United States
Anacortes
Washington
flag msg tools
badge
Just admit it already, Small World is not a fantasy wargame...it's a Mancala variant!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
breakaway11 wrote:
vladdswrath wrote:
breakaway11 wrote:
Shocked no one else mentioned that a show called Miami Dice, from The Dice Tower, had a problem with combat being too dicey (which it isn't, see every single response above).


The OP mentioned it...It's sort of the basis for this whole thread. whistle


You missed my point.

Miami Dice from The Dice Tower thinks the combat is too dicey?


Yup. I did. Ha!

Well done...You were too clever for me.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andy Day

League City
Texas
msg tools
mb
I have a pet peeve with issue #3 from the OP. I have players that say the same thing, after one play. "There's no way I can do this objective or that objective" they say. To that I say: you suck at the game.

You can do any objective you draw. You may have to work at it, but that's what drives the game in new and unique directions. Many players think they cannot do one of the objectives because they cannot achieve it the moment they draw it from the deck, and then say it's "too random." This just annoys me.

That said, not all objectives are created equal. Though they can all be done, I find that many games are decided when a player gets a few objectives that's very easy for him to achieve. Unfortunately, any game with dice rolling and card drawing have elements like this though.

I have talked with my group about making objectives a public set that everybody races for. I think that'd be awesome.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2 , 3 , 4  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.