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Subject: The rules book - an opinion - and a commander question rss

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Gary S.
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Hello all, I picked up HoN at the very busy UK Games Expo on Saturday and spent some time with the rules yesterday.

This is just my opinion but I'm sorry to say that the rules manual was one of the worst I've ever read. It reads like a player aid that was jotted down in shorthand by a minatures gamer for his personal use.

Now I appreciate that English isn't the first language of the producers, and that they relied on 'the community' to proof-read the manual. However just in case there's ever a second edition could I suggest the following:

* Please give a little context for the rules. For example what this rules section is all about, or how this rule is relevant in the big picture, or what it is trying to simulate. Don't just immediately launch into 'you cannot do X' or 'it costs Y to do Z'. This was the part I really struggled with, as I couldn't get any sense of the flow of the game, or how things meshed together, or the rationale behind it all.

* Be consistent with naming, for example under the hedgerow section it suddenly starts talking about groves, which I was left to assume is still a hedgerow.

* Only use line breaks for new paragraphs. There are lots of line breaks jammed directly under other sentences which breaks everything up making it harder to understand. Keep the text inside of the paragraph that it most directly relates to.

* Put pictures or tables directly next to the text that is referring to them, and be consistent whether it's above, to the side, or below.

* Don't just rely on random community dudes

On the plus side it's very colourful and looks interesting when you open it.

Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.

Thanks!


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Wulf Corbett
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Pheasant Plucker wrote:
It reads like a player aid...
That's exactly how I feel about it too. And an overcrowded, badly organised player aid too. I kept looking for actual rules in amongst the illustrations, then realised that was it... shake

The whole game seems to be a collection of icons and some loose suggestions on sequence of play...
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Mark Chaplin
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I'm guessing/hoping the online version 1.1 addresses some of these issues.


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Mike
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While not the best rulebook ever, I had no problems learning how to play from it. I have noticed over the years that games translated from French to English get horribly screwed up. Not sure why... maybe it isn't really even a trend and I just have had some unique experiences. But HoN is one of the better examples, however. I'm loving the game.
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John Di Ponio
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It was a little rough out of the box Gary but having dealt with all sorts of rules sets over the years, I was able to get a handle on play plus some of the game demo videos that have been up did help. I have only scraped the surface of the game thus far and am still trying to come up with a storage solution. I think I know what I want to do but it will require some building on my part.
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D Clevenger
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I also love the game but also get the feeling there was an arbitrary page count maximum put on the rulebook. A lot is just left to assumptions (especially in setup). Thank goodness for BGG forums.
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Mike
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And remember some of the setup rules are in the scenario booklet, not the rulebook. That is a little confusing I suppose if someone wanted to master the rules before doing their first scenario. LOL!
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Mark Langford
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I also bought the game at UK Expo and am looking forward to cracking it open!

Just a thought but have you checked out the website

http://www.devil-pig-games.com

There is an English option and once registered you can download a new/recent version of the rules (1.1) which looks recent and is 20 pages rather than the 14 in the box.

Haven't had a good look myself yet but intend to.

Cheers
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Mike
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I downloaded all of the rules "things" there on the DPG site. Mainly for the Cthulhu and Dust expansion tiles. I used the rules in the box to play and have not read the 1.1 version. I'm sure I'll reference it eventually. I just have not had reason to go beyond the rules or scenario booklet as yet.

It is such a cool game. DPG did a heck of good job. I'm so glad I went it so deep on the KS. I'm wishing now that I had purchased the scenario packs.
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D Clevenger
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I got everything and am thrilled. Will easily replace Conflict of Heroes. The amount of variability is amazing.
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Mike
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txaal wrote:
I got everything and am thrilled. Will easily replace Conflict of Heroes. The amount of variability is amazing.


Funny you should say that... when I was describing it to my friend I compared it to CoH with simpler rulers and more choices on what to field. HoN really does mesh CoH with a table top battle miniatures game feel like Dust Tactics. Which the KS incidentally included. Or at least we are supposed to have those tiles.
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Kent Ing
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Funny you should say that... My 10 year old nephew saw the DUST counters and actually liked it better than the actual minis we have for DUST (have the Premiums). If you ordered the Kickstarter, you should have gotten the DUST sheets with the game.
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Phil McDonald
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Whilst the rules are not particulary well done, even in the 1.1 online version, they are worth persevering with because there is a very good and intuitive game hidden within them.
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Kaufschtick
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txaal wrote:
Will easily replace Conflict of Heroes.


My feeling as well, although I am not a KS backer, just a regular buyer still waiting for the game that I preordered back on January. Hopefully it arrives this month, I'm looking forward to this one!

Anyway, I started reading this thread, and after seeing another thread concerning a counter or two that was apparently misprinted front/back, I began to get a little concerned.

Rules...not clear...oh boy. Then I immediately regained my senses and remembered that is one of the beauties of having forums just like this one. Got something you don't understand from a rule book, simply ask and you will more than likely get an answer to your question.

Poorly organized rules, or translated in this case (either way), most definitely are a pain in the hind quarters, to be sure. Not a deal breaker though, just a pain.

Talk about poor rule books, I still have CoH 1st ed. rules, and I'm not even sure they were finished at the time, yet alone clear. Group move rules were a mess! Actually, those rules weren't finished, as far as I know, they're still working on them and refining them. It was "thank goodness for forums" back then too! I remember posting two questions, both in the form of an A) or B) answer form, and both of which were answered by Uwe, the games designer. I can't recall exactly what the two questions were now, but his answer to both really surprised me. He basically said both of the options I had posed in my two questions were playable depending on how I felt, so the choice was mine as to the answers! Whatever I felt was more realistic or better suited for the game! Some other rules, most notably the close combat rules, were actively debated in the forums, and the final rules based upon feedback from players.

Although it is odd that clear rules don't necessarily come with all games, and a nice clear rulebook would be great, I dont really worry too much about how the rules are written and presented, as much as I do, are the rules any good, and is it well supported. If it's well supported, the rules can be clarified in forums.
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Martin Gallo
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Pheasant Plucker wrote:
Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.
I do believe they use the modifier on their own counter and if it is +2 vs Infantry, then so be it.

Also remember that they have a shorter range and are using an automatic weapon. If you put your leader that close to the enemy, he might just get KIA.
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Mark Chaplin
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I've now had time to read over the rules included with the retail release of the game.

Yes, I'll agree that they feel like an extended player aid, but they are nowhere near the worst ever made, not by a long chalk.



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Gary S.
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Thanks for the responses - and the helpful rules clarification by Martin - all very interesting
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Sacred Roach

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Actually, the rules are not bad...just poorly organized. My first play took longer than strictly necessary to understand the various symbols, but the intent was clear. To be fair, I have owned/played literally hundreds of games, so much of the basics were easy to understand. It also helped that I was familiar with Frontiers...THAT rule book was a mess.
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Leonardo Martino
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I remember that with 1.1 rules version there are a couple of tweaks and little changes about suppression tokens, could someone please enlighten me? I cant find the thread where I read them...
 
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Mark Chaplin
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Mezike wrote:
Many of the v1.1 changes are clarifications for situations where a rules lawyer could go to town, most if not all of which are resolvable with common sense, and the game is perfectly playable out of the box even if you do not use the updated rulebook.


The new/changed rules:

A unit that has a firing arc takes a suppressed token when assaulted from outside of that arc. This resolves MG emplacements having too high a combat bonus in an assault when their gun is pointing the other way, and is in any case really only relevant if you have the D-Day scenario pack. This doesn't happen often but is a really important change for when it does.

A unit that is suppressed loses it's zone of control (which would normally block enemy movement to a certain degree). This is a really big deal as the original ZOC rules were encouraging a positional blocking game that was out of character with the rest of the playin experience. This new rule both encourages suppressive fire, which is one of the key elements of the game, as well as reducing the effectiveness of "gamey" use of ZOC.

Units gain a suppressed token if they are in a building when it collapses. This doesn't happen often and isn't really pivotal, it looks like it was added because the general consensus was that something should happen to units in such a situation.

In the original Enlish rules, some poor translation made it look like vehicles could not stop diagonally between impassable terrain when the opposite is true. This sounds fairly important, but I don't think it would actually have made much of a difference in any of the games I've played so far.


I should also point out that the current revision is not yet final as there are a few more questions that have come up since and it is still a work in progress until announced otherwise by DPG. From what has been discussed so far on the forums I doubt that there will be any changes to the same magnitude as the ZOC rule mentioned above.
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Phil McDonald
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A lot is made of suppression in the rules, but most infantry units don't have the ability to fire suppression according to the icons on the units. that seems a bit counter_intuitive, even though machine guns do a better job of it.
 
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Arthur chang
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martimer wrote:
Pheasant Plucker wrote:
Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.
I do believe they use the modifier on their own counter and if it is +2 vs Infantry, then so be it.

Also remember that they have a shorter range and are using an automatic weapon. If you put your leader that close to the enemy, he might just get KIA.


Maybe I'm understanding wrong but I thought the range limitation icon on commanders was to specify they can't be attacked out if that range (e.g. to represent single persons being harder to hit than a team)
 
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Martin Gallo
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grimbergen wrote:
martimer wrote:
Pheasant Plucker wrote:
Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.
I do believe they use the modifier on their own counter and if it is +2 vs Infantry, then so be it.

Also remember that they have a shorter range and are using an automatic weapon. If you put your leader that close to the enemy, he might just get KIA.


Maybe I'm understanding wrong but I thought the range limitation icon on commanders was to specify they can't be attacked out if that range (e.g. to represent single persons being harder to hit than a team)
Hmmm, I just checked the 1.1 rules and it is open to interpretation either way.

I am assuming I am correct because most of the icons affect the "thing" they are "on" rather than "other things". Take Machine Gunner for example - Do you think units firing AT the MG element can split their fire or that the MG element can split its fire?
 
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Allan Doyle

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philmcd wrote:
A lot is made of suppression in the rules, but most infantry units don't have the ability to fire suppression according to the icons on the units. that seems a bit counter_intuitive, even though machine guns do a better job of it.


I think this will be a factor to consider when building points based forces. If you know you will be attacking, you will want a force with a combination of suppressive fire and assault. I think this type of force building will have a large affect in the game and has not had the the proper attention drawn to it.

grimbergen wrote:
martimer wrote:
Pheasant Plucker wrote:
Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.
I do believe they use the modifier on their own counter and if it is +2 vs Infantry, then so be it.

Also remember that they have a shorter range and are using an automatic weapon. If you put your leader that close to the enemy, he might just get KIA.


Maybe I'm understanding wrong but I thought the range limitation icon on commanders was to specify they can't be attacked out if that range (e.g. to represent single persons being harder to hit than a team)


It has a short range of fire due to the Thompson. Note the symbol is not on all one man counters. (snipers, some leaders, ect.)
 
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Phil McDonald
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grimbergen wrote:
martimer wrote:
Pheasant Plucker wrote:
Hoping that I haven't alienated everyone I'd be grateful if someone could confirm that commanders (yellow border counters) fire the same as teams (eg with a +2 bonus against infantry). It seemed a bit odd that one dude was putting out the same amount of fire as six dudes, but if that how it works then so be it.
I do believe they use the modifier on their own counter and if it is +2 vs Infantry, then so be it.

Also remember that they have a shorter range and are using an automatic weapon. If you put your leader that close to the enemy, he might just get KIA.


Maybe I'm understanding wrong but I thought the range limitation icon on commanders was to specify they can't be attacked out if that range (e.g. to represent single persons being harder to hit than a team)


Officers commonly carried only small arms weaponry.
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