Nicolette Tanksley
United States
Jackson
Missouri
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I think I want to play this game because it has solid commands and colors mechanics with a fantasy theme. However, I can't really tell the difference between the two editions that are currently out. I think they are set in different worlds? What about any rules changes or quality in the components? Is one theme better or cooler than another. Your thoughts would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Dimmendarkgirl
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Gordon J
United States
Eagan
Minnesota
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2nd Edition is more streamlined, faster to set up, a little bit "dumb-downed" to the average gamer. 1st Edition is a little more complicated, longer to set up. Great great game, but it would take almost as long to set up as it would be to play it.
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Mark McG
Australia
Penshurst
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Well 2nd edition is in print, and the expansion sets are being recently released. The fantasy setting is the FFG world, Terrinoth.

1st edition is harder to come by, but is a more 'historical' set in that there are actual medieval battles, two human armies that can be roughly termed the English & French armies, though they can be most Western European medieval armies. The Dwarf army is modelled on the Scots, and the Goblin army is modelled on the Almoravids.

BattleLore 1st ed needs a consolidation, since the rules differ slightly between the original Days of Wonder rules, and updated FFG rules. A composite of the two sets would be best, since FFG did a great job early on, but got kind of random later on.

I've not played BattleLore 2nd ed, but I give BattleLore 1st ed a d10-7 of the BGG scale, and an d10-8 using the 100 Years War expansion or the Call to Arms battles. The hard part is it being out of print, but there are several on the Marketplace.
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Peter Millen
United Kingdom
Greyabbey
Northern Ireland
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The title '2nd Edition' is misleading, it really is a whole new game.

I own and like both but 2e is the one that is currently in-print and expanding (I hope).
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Aswin Agastya
Indonesia
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Jawa Barat
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I don't think 1st is more complicated. If anything, it's simpler. Yes, the lore set up can be a pain, but the stats for soldiers are extremely streamlined, with no special abilities.

The support system of the 1st is golden though. I like it much better than the 2nd.
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Dan Cavaliere
United States
Littleton
Colorado
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Nicolette,

I'm a hard core 1st Edition fan so my best advice is to check out both games. Reason being, I believe they are not really related except in their name.

I was one of the few that hoped BL2E (when I first heard of it) was the amended version of BL1E but found it was really another game - which I still haven't quite convinced myself yet to buy.

My BL1E collection is complete and well loved. It is one of my top 5 favorite games.

Check them both out and see which one fits your likes the best - good luck
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Todd Rewoldt
United States
Loveland
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Dan, if you are so hardcore, how come you aren't playing a game on Vassal with me right now?

Nicolette, aside from availability (as mentioned above, 2nd edition is currently in print, 1st edition is out of print and I cannot envision a plausible scenario in which in comes back into print), like Mark pointed out, I think the biggest factor is if playing historical medieval battles are important to you or not. If solely fantasy battles are ones focus, 2e promises to expand those . 1e has a good base for fantasy battles, but was not allowed to get beyond Humans, Dwarves, Goblins, and a handful of Creatures (Dragons, Giants, etc). 1e does have a solid base in historical battles using the Commands & Colors system. While I had hoped more official historical scenarios would have been released, plenty exist, along with a multitude of player created scenarios (both historical and fantasy).

I love 1e and everything it is able to do, along with everything it was going to be able to do. Still holding out hope that the rule sets for the oodles of additional races will be made available. It is very much a complete game with everything that has been made available for it - just not sure how one would get a hold of all of that, unless one doesn't mind using other materials instead (miniatures from other companies, converting to blocks, etc.)

If you do want to try 1e on Vassal, feel free to give Dan or I (EDIT: or Jason!, see below) a geekmail - always looking for more people to play there.
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Dan Conley
United States
Milwaukie
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Nicolette...I cannot be in the least objective about this. I got in on first edition when it was released and was teaching the game at the Days of Wonder booth at Origins that first year. I have nothing but good things to day about the game apart from set-up taking awhile.

Have not looked at the new edition at all, so no insight there. Given the spotty history of expansion releases for the game, I wouldn't hold my breath for FFG to release new stuff for it. They have had the rights to the game for awhile now and I don't see a lot if activity.

*Shameless self-promotion*...my wife and I are facing a cross-country move as soon as late summer/early fall. I have been selling off lots of my games in an effort to downsize. I have two complete sets of first edition BattleLore + many extras. Had planned to take them to eBay. If you decide on first edition, GM me and we may be able to figure something out. Thanks!
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Kent Reuber
United States
San Mateo
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But as mentioned, second edition is a live system, which should see support, while BattleLore 1st edition won't. First edition has a generic fantasy background but is limited to goblins, dwarves, and a few creatures. Second edition is based on Fantasy Flight's world, and there will presumably more races published for it.

I prefer the first edition, party because I like the medieval scenarios in the first edition. I like the random setup rules and army selection from the second edition. The thing I don't like about 2nd edition is the victory conditions: it feels too much like "king of the hill" to hold onto particular hexes. Killing enemy units counts for nothing.

Ancient and medieval combat (and presumably medieval-based fantasy) is about breaking the enemy army while preserving yours as much as possible. Holding onto a piece of terrain is a "means to an end" so that holding a terrain feature helps you defeat the army. Seizing and holding terrain for its own, to me, feels too Napoleonic. In a Napoleonic campaign, you needed to seize and hold features to prepare and supply for the next battle. In medieval warfare, this wasn't as well developed.
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Todd Rewoldt
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The reason I haven't gotten into 2e yet is because I don't trust that it will expand much beyond what 1e has in terms of variety. I have no animosity towards FFG, I understand producing expandable niche boardgames is difficult to keep going and turn a profit, but so far the track record with what FFG has decided to do with BattleLore does not lead me to believe the 2e game* will go on expanding for more than a couple of years.

If Dan is offering a price that is acceptable to you, Nicolette, that is the way to go. On the other hand, if you want to roll the dice with 2e, now is a good time to get into the game, before one would have to try to catch up on expansions, which tend to be readily available for a few months, but then can be hard (and even more costly than they already are ) to track down later.

*And, again, as has been mentioned, a completely different game than 1e - not necessarily better or worse, that is dependent upon what one is looking for in a game, but in no way compatible, other than parts from one game could be used in the other, same as with any two games in existence
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Todd Rewoldt
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Loveland
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Sorry for the double (and even triple, in one way of looking at it) post, but re-read your original question, Nicolette, and if classic C&C mechanics are what you are looking for, I think you would prefer 1e to 2e.

I would love to know Richard Borg's level of involvement with 2e - if it was great, then I would have more innate trust for what is going on there, but for now the game feels to me like a way to "fix" the "shortcomings" of 1e - namely that is a Commands and Colors game, and plays as such.

If C&C mechanics are secondary to theme, I would think most would find the Terrinoth setting more aesthetically pleasing (cooler ) than the much more lighthearted bend that Days of Wonder took, which FFG then tried to bend to a more gritty, war-hammer-like vision, before scrapping 1e and moving onto 2e.

For what is worth, I completely embraced the more whimsical DoW stylings, and thought that they also had a great balance between the three existing races - the armies really did play differently and cohesively on the board - and was looking forward to more.
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voidreturn
United States
Round Rock
Texas
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I have everything from 1e and I think it is by far better than 2e. However, 2e has something going for it that 1e doesn't: better written rules.

The only real problem I have with 1e is the rules are so bad, it requires several compendiums to explain the various different exceptions and odd "official" rulings on situations. The game started out simple but wasn't really structured to handle all of the different situations that arise (seriously, just go look at the compendiums, it's crazy).

I playtest for 2e and it's a fantastic game in its own right, but they ultimately changed something that I strongly feel should have been kept. There is no system of "colors"; each unit type will have an attack and movement value. While that gives them far greater flexibility in the design space, I really enjoyed the artificial constraint of colors.

I will continue to play games on Vassal if I ever see anyone around, but sadly, it looks like most people have stopped playing. However, if anyone would like to play a game, send me a PM; I'm always down for more 1e.
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