A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Let me preface everything by saying that my opinions are from the perspective of a solo gamer. So what I say may not apply to two player games. I have always enjoyed Commands and Colors games as solo games. This includes Battle Cry, Memoir, CC Ancients and Napoleonics, Battles of Westeros and Battlelore first edition. So I was pretty excited to get 2nd edition.

I have now played 4 times, 1 two player and 3 solo plays, and am a bit tepid about the game. Again, this may only be an issue for solo gamers. Here are some of my negatives:

1. The VP mechanism: At first, I was very excited about the change from killing units to holding objective hexes as a means to victory. But in playing, I have felt like you are racing to hold hexes rather than entering into combat. It creates a bit of turtling and Euro style gaming in the sense that you are counting VPs and doing optimization calculations. The mechanism can also lead to quick accumulation of points. Not sure I really prefer this.

2. The theme: I guess I was expecting that there would be more theme in this dedicated fantasy setting v. 1st edition which was straddling the historical and fantasy worlds. But I must say that I felt less theme here. I don't know why these two sides are fighting, apparently to control a pair of forest and hill hexes at the same time! 1st edition felt thematic - the flags, the story in the scenario book, etc. I am getting nothing here.

3. Solo Suitability: I really like the fog of war achieved by the deployment mechanic and this actually makes solo play more interesting. In fact, the mustering and deployment phases were the most interesting aspects of the game from a solo perspective. I can't tell what it is - the VP mechanism?, lack of fixed scenarios where unit placement is preset? - but it feels less compelling as a solo game. Now this is truly an unfair criticism because the game never promises to be a good solo game, but I am saying this as a contrast between 2nd and 1st editions, the latter solos better.

Ok, so I may be all wet in these laments or maybe I am missing something. Perhaps I need to learn better strategy/tactics. But so far, I am a bit tepid on this evolution. Maybe I need to try this more two player. So, go ahead and chime in with feedback.

EDIT: please read through post as I have revised my views somewhat based on further play and tweaks to my solo approach. Also, see my thoughts on solo play thread in this forum.
5 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
flag msg tools
NFHS Football & Basketball
badge
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
atsgamer wrote:
2. The theme: I guess I was expecting that there would be more theme in this dedicated fantasy setting v. 1st edition which was straddling the historical and fantasy worlds. But I must say that I felt less theme here. I don't know why these two sides are fighting, apparently to control a pair of forest and hill hexes at the same time! 1st edition felt thematic - the flags, the story in the scenario book, etc. I am getting nothing here.

There is a story in the front of the rulebook. It may not be card-by-card, but it does explain the overall war.

Those that have Runewars can get a little more backstory on it as well, although that backstory doesn't touch as much on the Uthuk as they do the Waiqar history.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve Duff
Canada
Ottawa
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The game makes no claim to be a solo game, so it's not really surprising that the solo experience would be lacking.

Is this common? I wouldn't have expected the 1st edition to be played that way either.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
UnknownParkerBrother wrote:
The game makes no claim to be a solo game, so it's not really surprising that the solo experience would be lacking.

Is this common? I wouldn't have expected the 1st edition to be played that way either.


There are a fair amount of people who enjoy C & C games solo.

Grant your point on solo suitability, but points 1 and 2 could apply to standard play. Any validity in your mind to these concerns?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
flag msg tools
NFHS Football & Basketball
badge
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For #1, I haven't felt the game to be euro-y or turtley at all. Sure, a unit may try to camp on a VP spot, but you've got to keep the opponents away and that takes some aggressive tactics, too, and if they drive you off, you've got to be aggressive back.

It's hard to min/max this game, honestly, as there are just too many things to consider.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jason McFarland
United States
Shelton
Washington
flag msg tools
I don't see the turtling as much, a lot of the times the banners are forward and the secondary objective is back a bit. So, you may be able to camp on one, you'll leave the other vulnerable mostly. That's just my experience so far.

For the theme, I would like some reading material. I'm surprised that over that many game systems, there are no stories/novels.

And I also never even thought about either editions being solo play, with the way command cards work, but to each his own I guess.

Being a huge fan of the original and being very skeptical of this edition all the way up to my first die roll, I can attest, I'll never go back to the original, and I'll probably end up selling it.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Garrett
United States
Laredo
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For some back story, I highly recommend reading the last few pages of the Rune Age rule book.

http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/ffg_content/Rune%20Age/sup...

Pages 18 and 19 give the background of each of the 4 factions from Runewars including the Daqan Lords and the Uthuk Y'llan.

I agree that it's too bad there is no central location to get the whole story on the realms of Terrinoth and the world of Menara, but from a game company's perspective it makes a lot of sense to leave it open so they don't write themselves into a corner where the games can't expand for fear of contradicting the lore.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
OP here, thanks for the polite and thoughtful feedback. I will get this back to the table for another go as a two player. It is not that I have any hate for it, but felt a little underwhelmed. May be the solo issue here. I do like many aspects of the game and it does look awesome on a table! I need to give this some more play.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Ok, so I played a solo game without using any solo variants other than allowing the dummy player to get 2 lore each turn and to draw two lore cards at the beginning of the turn and playing any of the cards he can afford or use. The game was much better. I think the problems with my initial plays were that I was using solo variants that detracted from the game. So thanks for encouraging me to continue.

But I am still not totally convinced the VP model is ideal. I still tend to park a unit on a VP hex and sometimes it has little use in the game. Also, I still feel a lack of a compelling story driving the battle and it's purpose. Why are hill or forest hexes magical in a scenario or why hold that bridge? This leads me to think that writing a campaign for this game would be an awesome idea. Link two scenarios and then provide the backstory for the VP conditions. I may give this a shot and post it here.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Turner
United Kingdom
Farnham
Surrey
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
http://youtu.be/9IYRC7g2ICg
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
MrMT wrote:


That's me in 20 years...perhaps sooner...maybe now! whistle
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gregory Bay
United States
Kernersville
North Carolina
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mb
I own both and see strengths and weaknesses in both editions. I will be keeping both editions though as I enjoy each. The first edition did a much better job with narrative. The scenarios told a story. The battles were epic with vast armies sweeping across the battlefield. With the first edition the players had moments of desperate gambles and battles where the odds were vastly against you because of the way the scenarios were crafted.
This is what I mean by narrative. I enjoyed the council and establishing the flavor of one's leadership.

The 2nd edition on the other hand provides the "arcade" version. Players start with equal amount of points in units or close to equal. The lore decks represent the flavor of each faction and right from the get go each side feels distinct. The first edition did not do as good a job with this. You played scenarios but many of the early one's had a familiarity between the factions. The second edition provides strong distinction from the get go. The point based area control victory condition works well and provides a ready goal for new players. The scenario generator works well but it too over time feels familiar. This is not bad but just the way it feels. The oversized board is nice along with the oversized units which goes along with the arcade feel of the game. The units are few but unique in their abilities. The feeling of the battle is more of a skirmish than the epic size of the first edition.

In summary I like both because they offer two different types of fantasy battles. With the release of the second edition many have come out and decried the first edition's faults, which it has, but the second edition is not without its own. The second edition is a great game to jump into fantasy miniature battles with and the Battlelore franchise. I look forward to many more games to come.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A.T. Selvaggio
United States
Webster
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
baymonkey wrote:
I own both and see strengths and weaknesses in both editions. I will be keeping both editions though as I enjoy each. The first edition did a much better job with narrative. The scenarios told a story. The battles were epic with vast armies sweeping across the battlefield. With the first edition the players had moments of desperate gambles and battles where the odds were vastly against you because of the way the scenarios were crafted.
This is what I mean by narrative. I enjoyed the council and establishing the flavor of one's leadership.

The 2nd edition on the other hand provides the "arcade" version. Players start with equal amount of points in units or close to equal. The lore decks represent the flavor of each faction and right from the get go each side feels distinct. The first edition did not do as good a job with this. You played scenarios but many of the early one's had a familiarity between the factions. The second edition provides strong distinction from the get go. The point based area control victory condition works well and provides a ready goal for new players. The scenario generator works well but it too over time feels familiar. This is not bad but just the way it feels. The oversized board is nice along with the oversized units which goes along with the arcade feel of the game. The units are few but unique in their abilities. The feeling of the battle is more of a skirmish than the epic size of the first edition.

In summary I like both because they offer two different types of fantasy battles. With the release of the second edition many have come out and decried the first edition's faults, which it has, but the second edition is not without its own. The second edition is a great game to jump into fantasy miniature battles with and the Battlelore franchise. I look forward to many more games to come.


Well stated!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
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.