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Harbour» Forums » General

Subject: Is it balanced enough and the game-play short enough? rss

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Paul Kessels
Netherlands
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I backed the game after reading the KS page and seeing the artwork (brilliant!). Seems like it could be a great game for $20.

However, more and more reviews are being written that the game might not be as great after all.

Main concerns are the mixed reviews:
- Plays vary from 30 to 90 minutes
- Some cards don't seem balanced
- What replayability does it have

I have not read any decent feedback from the developers on what they do with the feedback from testplayers and reviewers. Many players have tested the PnP version. But will there be improvements to the final game in terms of gameplay and especially balance?
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Brad McKenzie
Thailand
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I imagine there will be continuous refinement as the Kickstarter progresses, but I also am on the fence due to the concerns you've listed. I've backed, but am cautiously waiting and seeing where this game goes.

Such excellent artwork, though...
 
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Scott Almes
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We are actually doing a series of designer articles on our development and balancing choices and strategies. They will be part of the campaign, and the first one goes up on Wednesday, I think.

Its going to be a good series. We'll talk some gritty details. An important thing we'll talk about is the evolution of play: styles and what strategies start to unviel themselves after 5-10 plays. A lot of the imbalance stuff that people are seeing is because some characters are more obvious on their first play than others. You'd be surprised by how this game evolves as you get it to the table more and more.

And, please do believe me that we are reading all of the feedback - both positive and especially the negative. Some have led to game tweaks. Some haven't. Some led to graphic design and text changes. But, I'm here listening to it all
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Tajs Seelen
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Very nice to see designers participating.
Thnx Scott!

As for myself, I backed it too. Seems like a lighter game with enough strategy to think about, once you get the hang of it.
Ideal for my family during holidays

Also if you really are hesistant, try the PnP first
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Seth Jaffee
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paulkessels wrote:
Main concerns are the mixed reviews:
- Plays vary from 30 to 90 minutes

15 minutes per player is a pretty reasonable play time to expect. I believe we're going to put that on the box.
Quote:
- Some cards don't seem balanced

As Scott said, we will be publishing developer notes talking about game balance and the design and development process.

With most games I see posts online about game imbalance - most of the time (not always!) that translates directly to player inexperience. Hopefully the articles will help explain why the choices were made in this game, and why in this particular case, we don't think there's as much imbalance in the abilities.

Quote:
- What replayability does it have

There are more cards in the deck than come out in a single game, so every game is at least a little bit different. Some of the buildings are similar - exchanging resources for other resources - and are therefore sort of interchangeable and don't really lend much replayability, but those buildings are necessary for the game to function. There are a number of more interesting, more dynamic buildings that, when they come up, force you to adjust your play.

Each game is a new opportunity for tactical choices, so to me it never really feels samey. And with all the new characters being unlocked via stretch goals, there should be plenty of game to go around before you get bored!

I'm sure most backers will find Harbour well worth their $20.
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