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MERCS: Recon – Counter Threat» Forums » General

Subject: After seeing the troubled start of Myth game play, I have my concerns. rss

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John Di Ponio
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I went back and forth about funding the kickstarter for Myth when it was going and ended up passing. Every once in a while, I kicked myself for not getting on board. When I saw MERCS: Recon come up for funding I decided to jump aboard and go for the ride. Now that MYTH reviews have arrived and the questions and problems with the rules are posted, I am starting to get a bit concerned about how this project with go. The videos posted so far have done a really nice job at showing MERCS game play and structure.

My hope is that the team looks ate MYTH and the problems/questions they are having and take what they learn from that experience and apply it to MERCS.
Anyone else have a similar concern?
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JohnnyD wrote:
I went back and forth about funding the kickstarter for Myth when it was going and ended up passing. Every once in a while, I kicked myself for not getting on board. When I saw MERCS: Recon come up for funding I decided to jump aboard and go for the ride. Now that MYTH reviews have arrived and the questions and problems with the rules are posted, I am starting to get a bit concerned about how this project with go. The videos posted so far have done a really nice job at showing MERCS game play and structure.

My hope is that the team looks ate MYTH and the problems/questions they are having and take what they learn from that experience and apply it to MERCS.
Anyone else have a similar concern?


Legitmate concern. You're not alone. I asked them and MERCs addressed those concerns. Look for Brian's answers at the end of this thread:
http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1145883/hesitant-to-back/pag...
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Ondrej Kocnar
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Well, there is already thread about it. I personally am not concerned about the rules very much. They seem to have it prepared now much more.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1145883/hesitant-to-back
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okocnar wrote:
Well, there is already thread about it. I personally am not concerned about the rules very much. They seem to have it prepared now much more.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1145883/hesitant-to-back


I sure hope you're right. I played my first games of Myth yesterday. Utter disaster. Bloated, slow, awkward game play with few interesting decisions utterly neutered by disastrously bad rules.

It might become better with a new, completely revised rulebook, but I've lost the interest of my gaming group. This was the worst "really looking forward to it" to "OMG WTH?" kickstarters I've backed.

Will Recon be better? Up to you to decide.
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Ondrej Kocnar
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mattprice wrote:
okocnar wrote:
Well, there is already thread about it. I personally am not concerned about the rules very much. They seem to have it prepared now much more.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1145883/hesitant-to-back


I sure hope you're right. I played my first games of Myth yesterday. Utter disaster. Bloated, slow, awkward game play with few interesting decisions utterly neutered by disastrously bad rules.

It might become better with a new, completely revised rulebook, but I've lost the interest of my gaming group. This was the worst "really looking forward to it" to "OMG WTH?" kickstarters I've backed.

Will Recon be better? Up to you to decide.


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.
 
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JohnnyD wrote:
I went back and forth about funding the kickstarter for Myth when it was going and ended up passing. Every once in a while, I kicked myself for not getting on board. When I saw MERCS: Recon come up for funding I decided to jump aboard and go for the ride. Now that MYTH reviews have arrived and the questions and problems with the rules are posted, I am starting to get a bit concerned about how this project with go. The videos posted so far have done a really nice job at showing MERCS game play and structure.

My hope is that the team looks ate MYTH and the problems/questions they are having and take what they learn from that experience and apply it to MERCS.
Anyone else have a similar concern?


You might also consider looking at the newer reviews of Myth.
They seem quite optimistic.

But the main point(s) probably is: Recon is probably much simpler and more traditional game than Myth AND Recon beta rules are already posted
(so there is lot of possibilities for the community to notice any problems and designers to correct them). Plus I believe Megacon has learned something.
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okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.

It's here:

In addition to all that Mage Wars awesomeness, we also announced a new game called "The Sheriff of Nottingham" that will be part of a new line of games called the "Dice Tower Essentials". The Sheriff is slated for a Gen Con release as well, and will provide a family friendly game in the Robin Hood universe with the twist that each player will get a chance to play in the role of the Sheriff of Nottingham!

okocnar wrote:


But the main point(s) probably is: Recon is probably much simpler and more traditional game than Myth AND Recon beta rules are already posted
(so there is lot of possibilities for the community to notice any problems and designers to correct them). Plus I believe Megacon has learned something.


"Beta" rules were also posted in Myth kickstarter... and we know where that ended up.


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New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.



His review was paid for, or so it says right at the beginning. There might be an interesting game there in Myth, but it will take a lot of work to find it.

Edit: Wooo hoo do I feel stupid. I'm wrong. There is no indication whatsoever that this was a paid review!!!

As much I love to make fun of folks for makin' stuff up... Here I go. I apologize! I totally and completely made that up. Very sorry.
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mattprice wrote:
New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.



His review was paid for, or so it says right at the beginning. There might be an interesting game there in Myth, but it will take a lot of work to find it.


Really... that would be news to me. We do not pay for reviews.
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Ondrej Kocnar
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New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.

okocnar wrote:


But the main point(s) probably is: Recon is probably much simpler and more traditional game than Myth AND Recon beta rules are already posted
(so there is lot of possibilities for the community to notice any problems and designers to correct them). Plus I believe Megacon has learned something.


"Beta" rules were also posted in Myth kickstarter... and we know where that ended up.




Well, in Recon the rules were posted at the beggining of KS and look to be much more complete.
 
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mattprice wrote:
New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.



His review was paid for, or so it says right at the beginning. There might be an interesting game there in Myth, but it will take a lot of work to find it.


And with this latest (and highly inflammatory) statement you have invalidated any opinion of yours as it pertains to Myth.
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okocnar wrote:


Well, in Recon the rules were posted at the beggining of KS and look to be much more complete.


Well, that's (subjective) but fine. You're falling into the same (potential) trap that Myth backers did when they said the exact same thing. You have no idea how complete the rules are, you haven't played the game.

I'm not trying to change your mind, just give you the info.

Just so you know, we had this same conversation regarding Myth back in January and this is what was said then to me saying "Let's hope so" regarding how complete the game would be:

kelann08 wrote:

There's no need to hope. The base game itself and rules set was 90% complete including thorough playtesting prior to launch. There were playtest videos and player character walkthroughs very early in the campaign including videos about stretch goal characters. This was a thoroughly fleshed out game before the campaign even began. No need to hope.


Videos, beta rules, lots of play testing, stretch goals.... sound familiar?

Of course that's absurdly inaccurate. Some of us knew it then, all of us know it now, and it's fortified by the answers given by MERCs in the thread I linked above where they indicate that Myth was actually well into production before any 'real' playtesting had been done... that's if you consider Kickstarter backers (they are not blind testers) to be legitimate play testers... which I don't. In my mind, Myth is literally an unplaytested game.

Will RECON be different? Lets hope so. But then again, that's what I said about Myth.

Roll the dice.
 
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I'm starting to think some people have a vendetta against MegaCon Games...

I do want to throw another point of view in here. I won't try to convince the OP of backing Recon based on anything Myth-related. I think there is plenty of information presented so far in the Recon Kickstarter to know exactly what you're backing.

When I backed Myth, I knew the main fundamentals of the game. Sure, I'm an "industry guy," so maybe my opinion is as useful as Tom Vasel's here, but I knew exactly what I was going to get from Myth when I threw down money on the Kickstarter. It's a truly innovative and fantastic system. I'm constantly thinking about my next game, and I'm fairly in awe of it from a design standpoint. However, this isn't all about Myth...

For the Recon Kickstarter, I feel like MegaCon is playing with their hand open here. The team is very good about putting up videos or blurbs about any aspect of the game that the backers request. It's pretty apparent what you're going to get if you hang around the Kickstarter page at all.

Bottom line, I wouldn't base my buying decisions based on everything you read here. Sure, there are a lot of people complaining about things. But most of us who love what we got out of Myth are usually busy doing the same thing...playing it and having a blast.
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strayknife wrote:


I'm starting to think you have a vendetta against MegaCon Games...



Complete rubbish. I've poked at the process, not the company. It could be (and has been) any company that willingly chooses to bring a product to market without doing due process for their target market.

If you take it personally that I point out that your 'blind playtest of your rules' didn't actually include any blind playtesting OR your rules then good... you should. You should also take personal that people find this unacceptable. I couldn't care less the company that does this. There is no vendetta.

The game wasn't properly tested and as a result you have an unfinished product. This isn't acceptable in the software industry, it shouldn't be accepted in the board game industry. Lots of people do this on Kickstarter, and that's the point.
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New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Well, in Recon the rules were posted at the beggining of KS and look to be much more complete.


Well, that's (subjective) but fine. You're falling into the same (potential) trap that Myth backers did when they said the exact same thing. You have no idea how complete the rules are, you haven't played the game.

I'm not trying to change your mind, just give you the info.

Just so you know, we had this same conversation regarding Myth back in January and this is what was said then to me saying "Let's hope so" regarding how complete the game would be:

kelann08 wrote:

There's no need to hope. The base game itself and rules set was 90% complete including thorough playtesting prior to launch. There were playtest videos and player character walkthroughs very early in the campaign including videos about stretch goal characters. This was a thoroughly fleshed out game before the campaign even began. No need to hope.


Videos, beta rules, lots of play testing, stretch goals.... sound familiar?

Of course that's absurdly inaccurate. Some of us knew it then, all of us know it now, and it's fortified by the answers given by MERCs in the thread I linked above where they indicate that Myth was actually well into production before any 'real' playtesting had been done... that's if you consider Kickstarter backers (they are not blind testers) to be legitimate play testers... which I don't. In my mind, Myth is literally an unplaytested game.

Will RECON be different? Lets hope so. But then again, that's what I said about Myth.

Roll the dice.


So what trap are you refering to? Is it the trap where I pay $100 and recieve about $800 worth of gaming sweetness? Because, if it is, I will gladly jump into that trap every time.
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Sir Wilhelm wrote:

So what trap are you refering to? Is it the trap where I pay $100 and recieve about $800 worth of gaming sweetness? Because, if it is, I will gladly jump into that trap every time.


That's a pretty offbase observation, isn't it? It should be fairly clear from what I said (having nothing to do with value) and the primary complaints from people that the problem has nothing to do with resale value. And the market disagrees with you that your $100 is worth $800. But your hyperbole is noted.

Given I demonstrated exactly what the trap is, I guess I should take that comment as a joke?

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BShotton wrote:
mattprice wrote:
New_Sheriff wrote:
okocnar wrote:


Interesting point of view. I wonder how it can be the same game that Tom Vassel liked so much.


I agree with Tom more often than I don't, but lets not kid ourselves that as a guy that makes his living playing games it's in Tom's best interest to like a blockbuster game that's going to be expanded and that he'll be able to talk about for a long long time.

Not that I'm saying he'd intentionally mislead, he probably genuinely likes the game. But I wouldn't be surprised if you see Tom start promoting and hawking 'exclusive' Myth cards through The Dice Tower. He already does this with Mage Wars, another one of his 'best game ever' games (to which I mostly agree). I think I read an announcement where he's even working with Arcane Wonders to promote new games under the dice tower, though I cannot offhand remember where I read that.



His review was paid for, or so it says right at the beginning. There might be an interesting game there in Myth, but it will take a lot of work to find it.


Really... that would be news to me. We do not pay for reviews.


I work for a game review company and I can tell you that we don't get paid for reviews. Our only payment is getting a copy of the game. Which for a gamer like me is payment enough.
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jussadreamer wrote:

I work for a game review company and I can tell you that we don't get paid for reviews. Our only payment is getting a copy of the game. Which for a gamer like me is payment enough.


This is offtopic eh (my response, not yours)? But I can't help pointing out that if you're really a 'game review company' (as in, that's your bread and butter product) and you don't get paid for reviews, you are either:

a) Not really a game review company and you make your money elsewhere
b) You do make your money from reviews, you just aren't paid directly by the game company.
 
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New_Sheriff wrote:
strayknife wrote:


I'm starting to think you have a vendetta against MegaCon Games...



Complete rubbish. I've poked at the process, not the company. It could be (and has been) any company that willingly chooses to bring a product to market without doing due process for their target market.

If you take it personally that I point out that your 'blind playtest of your rules' didn't actually include any blind playtesting OR your rules then good... you should. You should also take personal that people find this unacceptable. I couldn't care less the company that does this. There is no vendetta.

The game wasn't properly tested and as a result you have an unfinished product. This isn't acceptable in the software industry, it shouldn't be accepted in the board game industry. Lots of people do this on Kickstarter, and that's the point.


I think you're wrong on both accounts there. Otherwise, you wouldn't have software patches or 2nd editions of boardgames. Trust me, I helped design Descent 2nd Edition.
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strayknife wrote:


I think you're wrong on both accounts there. Otherwise, you wouldn't have software patches or 2nd editions of boardgames. Trust me, I helped design Descent 2nd Edition.


I think I will choose to continue to not trust you.

The point isn't 'because this is the way it is done it makes it ok'. The point is, it shouldn't be that way in the first place... and the less board game design emulates software design, the better. 'Fix it after the fact' should not be the mantra of board game design.

Software patches and 2nd edition games have nothing to do with the point.

Just because software is release that makes an unusable (or near unusable) product usable, doesn't mean everyone is satisfied with the process. Clearly everyone involved would rather have the product work in the first place.

Your 2nd edition analogy doesn't make any sense, especially when validated by Descent. Decent 2.0 didn't make 1.0 playable.

Software is patched after the fact all the time, and no one agrees this is best practice.

Board games are not (generally) released this way (at least not mainstream) until KS came around. That is to say, you weren't having these home based/small time 'game designers' with half-cocked ideas running up six figure campaigns and then failing on product quality.

Just because you can fix it 'after the fact' doesn't excuse your design process of eliminating those processes that would reduce/eliminate your need to do so.

Or more to the point... playtest first. Not after.
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New_Sheriff wrote:
jussadreamer wrote:

I work for a game review company and I can tell you that we don't get paid for reviews. Our only payment is getting a copy of the game. Which for a gamer like me is payment enough.


This is offtopic eh (my response, not yours)? But I can't help pointing out that if you're really a 'game review company' (as in, that's one of your primary products) and you don't get paid for reviews, you are either:

a) Not really a game review company and you make your money elsewhere
b) You do make your money from reviews, you just aren't paid directly by the game company.


We are a fledgling company and we all have day jobs so that's where we get our money for living expenses. We have companies that advertise on our site but none of them are game companies and that money goes towards the expenses of operating a website. We do game reviews because 1) we love tabletop games and 2) we want to help inform the community about games that are out there.
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New_Sheriff wrote:
strayknife wrote:


I think you're wrong on both accounts there. Otherwise, you wouldn't have software patches or 2nd editions of boardgames. Trust me, I helped design Descent 2nd Edition.


I think I will choose to continue to not trust you.

The point isn't 'because this is the way it is done it makes it ok'. The point is, it shouldn't be that way in the first place... and the less board game design emulates software design, the better. 'Fix it after the fact' should not be the mantra of board game design.

Software patches and 2nd edition games have nothing to do with the point.

Just because software is release that makes an unusable (or near unusable) product usable, doesn't mean everyone is satisfied with the process. Clearly everyone involved would rather have the product work in the first place.

Your 2nd edition analogy doesn't make any sense, especially when validated by Descent. Decent 2.0 didn't make 1.0 playable.

Software is patched after the fact all the time, and no one agrees this is best practice.

Board games are not (generally) released this way (at least not mainstream) until KS came around. That is to say, you weren't having these home based/small time 'game designers' with half-cocked ideas running up six figure campaigns and then failing on product quality.

Just because you can fix it 'after the fact' doesn't excuse your design process of eliminating those processes that would reduce/eliminate your need to do so.

Or more to the point... playtest first. Not after.


Well, sounds like you know it all!
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strayknife wrote:


Well, sounds like you know it all!


Thanks! Have lots of experience in marketing, product design, quality assurance etc. etc.

 
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So is your beef ultimately with KickStarter itself, McG?

I've been following these convos because, as a Recon backer, I'm curious to see what I'm getting into, and you've said you have nothing against MegaCon, and you hope Recon is a success, and that you're not backing it, so what are you ultimately trying to accomplish here?

I'm just trying to figure out what I'm...well, not able to figure out, apparently.
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My biggest issue with Myth is that they seem to be unwilling to admit several mistakes they made with basic grammar, chalking it up to "editorial decisions". When you're objectively wrong over which word you've used, and yet you refuse to fix it, that tells me that:
1) You don't have a professional editor, or your editor is garbage;
2) You won't recognize that a professional editor is necessary (or that the one you have is bad); so
3) Things are unlikely to change.

If they were a little more up front about how the issues happened ("Hey, guys, we edited it ourselves. Turns out we're not really good at that. We'll be bringing someone on for future projects."), then I'd be a little more willing to continue on. But telling us that objectively incorrect English was an "editorial decision" is insulting.
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