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Subject: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review - revised ... rss

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Kenrick Fearn
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Hi all,

I have just revised a few points on my musings after rereading and also needed to make a few clarifications...

This is a thematic card game based on the Napoleaonic era of France, from those chaps at COA...

For me at the moment it's a Pretty mixed bag ...Here are a few reasons why...

Packaging...

The game comes in a rather large format beautifully embossed box ...(not sure why it needed to be so big or this size) but having two games rooms one for euros and one for war-games I have no space issues, but it's not a conventional size ...but nothing wrong with standing out in the crowd, it pays to be noticed ...but so much bigger hmmmm?

The contents are up to COAs normal very high end book case war-game standard, thickish war-game standard counters ( although theses days I would prefer larger sized ones ) but they are functional and after clipping look nice on their charts...

Rule and play books...

The rule book and play book are graphically stunning and pretty clear most of the time ...couple of oddities in the rules but they have been pretty well cleared up on this forum ...I have not ventured over to its page on CSW as I find reading forums on CSW is too much for me and actually puts me off / or destroys the enjoyment of a game...and I find a few of those folks can be too aggressive, and a tad condescending, or too intense I guess some of them see themselves as hardcore war-gamers not to be messed with, so way out of my playing league and comfort zone...each to his own...

I would have preferred solo rules embedded into the main rules and not bolted onto the back would have helped me ...but each to his own.

Please note the playbook holds several important examples of play at the back and I used these a lot to grasp basic game play...

Play aides ...

Interestingly, Clash used to use a lot of textured paper in there games for play aides and maps ...this time glossy print for play aides and charts ...look good but slightly on thin side for price ...I prefer textured paper / card as creates a more authentically aged feel and thicker card ( euro gamer in me fighting to get out )

Cards...

Caution guys I have only played once so far ...as waiting for card sleeves! Honestly, I can't really make my mind up about card stock ...but the clip art must have taken some serious research as a great mixture of actual art and contemporary political cartoons in early Punchesque style ...delicious !

A lot of variety in the art too...excellent!

A majority of the text on cards I have encountered is pretty clear which demonstrates they have thought carefully about how the cards are phrased avoiding too many ambiguities as is often common with some text heavy card games also a very hard thing to do right ...well done !

200 cards in total, the cards are divided into several minor decks before play but the full instructions are in the rule book.


Game play ...

Again it's pretty unique in some ways as unlike most war games this game plays best with a fertile RPG type imagination ( most war games I normally play need lots of maths and not much RPG imagination other than how to squeeze out a few more points etc ) ...if you can picture yourself in French military society with all that it entails ...the trials and tribulations of climbing the ranks to achieve maximum military / social kudos or finding either glorious or inglorious death then this is a game for you ...( Hint: pop off and play Assassins Creed: Unity for real sense revolutionary France marvellous stuff and will put you in the mood).

If you are void of said imagination or expecting a war-game per se ...then you will find it to be more or less a card shuffling / pulling, dice rolling, counter pushing excercise ...well this would be my solitaire view of the game if you are sans imagination ...

Not sure I know any one who would play this with me, so it was purchased on its solitaire suitability ...Which as others have shown can be great fun...

Overall..

Well yes and no ... I am ambivalent about this game ...yes I am currently more unsure of this game than sure but that will change ...

1. The price, well I think it's a over priced in my opinion ( here in France ) ...but that's true of most wargames here, also it's the research, play testing plus import costs etc that I guess your paying for and limited print runs. I think though cost to enjoyment will balance out ...

2.I feel the counters could have been bigger...old age ...

3. I have only played very basic game, no chrome, no optional rules, once these are added this will certainly add to the enjoyment of the game ...plus a little more complexity..

4. Several scenarios are available plus a small 100 days Campaign to play plus cards equals a load of replay value ...

5. As I said I am sleeving the cards as after one game some of mine have already developed very minor chipping / scratching and sadly, one of my card corners was crimped in sellophane when shrink wrapped so need to sleeve them anyway as that card sticks out like a sore thumb now ...

To be frank or any else you might prefer ...I have waited so long for this game in terms of years that I think my expectation levels got the better of me ...so it may just well be me that feels a little disappointed overall but again it's early days...

So, a game of substance, that is not quite 'all fur coat but no knickers' ...I am okay with it ...there is lots of theme, but it's just missing something for me ATM but with chrome etc added I am sure it will get much much better when I try a second game and not working on the rules as I play or the various card meanings/ interactions...

Happy Gaming


Ric



Revised 28th Jan 2015
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Ed Wimble
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
I am ambivalent....

Ambivalence? Perhaps you are ambivalent regarding your love for Bonaparte? Look at you, one touch and you are off to your precious general.

Avoid Féraud at all costs in future plays. He is sure to be your mortal enemy!
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Arrigo Velicogna
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
well,

people have problems with the meaning of review in this place... or with logical writing, hopefully Battles will have a full size review of it soonish...
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Kenrick Fearn
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
Mad Archeologist wrote:
well,

people have problems with the meaning of review in this place... or with logical writing, hopefully Battles will have a full size review of it soonish...


Yes I like to leave full reviews to those who are good it ...

Maybe I should have just titled it "Initial impressions of my new game...Ric's musings"...rather than a mini-review ...

So sorry to disappoint you ...

Have you thought of buying the game, playing it then write a review yourself instead of waiting around for others to do it ...or moaning about others efforts to pass on their impressions ?

As the saying goes ...if you want it done properly do it yourself ...

Happy gaming

Ric
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Kenrick Fearn
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
Blunderbuss wrote:
I am ambivalent....

Ambivalence? Perhaps you are ambivalent regarding your love for Bonaparte? Look at you, one touch and you are off to your general.

Avoid Féraud at all costs in future plays. He is sure to be your mortal enemy!


Lol...will spend some serious time together with my comrades in arms once my sleeves arrive ...I'll just call it my leave in Corsica for now until they arrive ...

Once I have a few more games under my belt I'll pen a full review with pics etc ...

Ric
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Andrea Sbragia
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
Got mine today, thank you for the review.

I think that the box so big might be useful to place a plastic counter tray inside and the sleeved cards and dice, so they wont' move so much inside the box.

On what concerns the gameplay i have mixed feelings too ... so i am thinking about a very small variant for battles inside a campaign (maybe using eagles card game or something similar)

Have a nice career, grognard!
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Kenrick Fearn
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
Adraeth Montecuccoli wrote:
Got mine today, thank you for the review.

I think that the box so big might be useful to place a plastic counter tray inside and the sleeved cards and dice, so they wont' move so much inside the box.

On what concerns the gameplay i have mixed feelings too ... so i am thinking about a very small variant for battles inside a campaign (maybe using eagles card game or something similar)

Have a nice career, grognard!


Je vous remerci Mon Frere...

That's sounds interesting ...but I would at least give it a few games ...

The cards do add quite a dynamic to the game in their own way the difficulty I think for me was just unfamiliarity with the system hence I will be playing it a lot more to see if I feel the same ...

If you do a variant I still have my eagles decks from Columbia games ...need to look for them though lol...but would be interested in taking a look ...

Happy gaming

Best wishes

Ric
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Andrea Sbragia
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
did you try the optional rules for Combat cards?
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Kenrick Fearn
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Re: Wonderful...it's here but ...mini-review
Adraeth Montecuccoli wrote:
did you try the optional rules for Combat cards?


Hi Andrea,

I did not use any optional rules on my first play as concentrated on getting solo rules bedded in ...

That is why I suspect the game will improve with the Fair Sex rules et alia ...

Once bedded in it's quite straight forward, so far for me ...but it's how the cards interact and not missing subtleties in the rules ...which are well written and presented but for me a little dense as I seem to take longer and longer to grasp things these days ...

My advice, go where you feel comfortable ...for me basic rules plus solo stuff then gradually introduce more chrome. You may well be a lot smarter than me ...I was described by my Colour Sgt at RMA Sandhurst during officer training as having "the intelligence of an empty locker" need I say more ...he knew me well

Although, my military history/ science master there was Dr David Chandler and I got to spend some serious time with him and his passion for Nappy Wars ...now he was intelligent and had a great humour too!

My Enthusiasm has always out done Intelligence for me ...I loose at most games I play but don't care just love playing them ...

Good luck my friend you will get as much as you put in with this game, that's a certainty ...

Ric

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Darrell Pavitt
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Okay. now can we have a naval version a la Forrester / O'Brian?

You would have to be in the Royal Navy, obviously, unless the idea of being stuck in a blockaded port for years appeals.
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Kenrick Fearn
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Guys

I want to update my review again with some pics from my iPad air ...does any one know how to do it...

I am a bit of a Luddite so you will need to explain it to me as if I was Forrest Gump ...

Thanks

Happy gaming

Ric
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Paul Regulski
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Blunderbuss wrote:
I am ambivalent....

Ambivalence? Perhaps you are ambivalent regarding your love for Bonaparte? Look at you, one touch and you are off to your precious general.

Avoid Féraud at all costs in future plays. He is sure to be your mortal enemy!


Yeah the Duelists is a great film to get you in the mood...
paraphrased >> ..." Iv'e been giving your situation some thought..
" Stay ahead of him.." { promotion } " stay away from him " " Put your trust in Bonaparte "
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Michael Tapner
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It is well worth while adding the optional rules on the Fair Sex. Not only are there the obvious advantages associated with marriage but a Machivellian aspect of your opponents will suddenly leap out as they see new ways to bring you down :-)

Word of warning (from game experience)... Be aware that if your spouse is at home then every time you mention the word "Wife" or "Mistress" that they will hear, no matter how many doors are closed or how loud the TV is going. You will then have the riot act read to you the following day....

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Ed Wimble
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"It's Dan from State Farm."

She sounds hideous.
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Well, she's a guy.
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Ron A
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Peisistratous wrote:

Packaging...

The game comes in a rather large format beautifully embossed box ...(not sure why it needed to be so big or this size)


I agree with you, I would've been perfectly happy with a 'normal' bookcase sized box. However, the 12x12 square box IS becoming more common. Its almost a standard size for Euros, and some wargames such as War Stories family and 1944: Race to the Rhine use an 12x12 box.

One other component/packaging item to mention--DICE. The game includes twelve D10s, 3 each of 4 different colors. Ironically, even though there are times you need to make D100 roll, all the dice are labeled 1-10, there are no 10-20-30-40... decimal dice. It's easy enough to say ahead of time, 'the blue time is the 10s, the white die is the 1's,' but still. If you're going to include 12 dice, put in some decimals.
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Ed Wimble
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Hmm, regarding dice... we only included that many until it occurred to us (from evidence abound) that most folks are playing this solo. So, subsequent copies only have two or three pairs now.
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