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Subject: Why I don't think BattleLore is such a great game rss

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Alexander Corzo
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Abekongen wrote:
Hi all,

I would like to stress that the review is my own personal opinion based on my limited experience with BL and my not-so-limited experience with games in general. I didn't intend to write a full and objective review that you expect in a magazine (hence the title of the post), although I honestly tried to avoid being influenced too much by my own idiosyncrasies. For example, I don't like the high luck factor in BL, but accepted that as a reasonable premise in the game's design. And therefore I didn't mention it. Maybe I shouldn't have posted the review as a review, but rather as a "first impressions" or just a comment. However, as somebody mentioned, if you get the impression that a game is not so great already after 6 games, should you still expect that it will suddenly turn into a revelation later? I don't think so. The lore aspect seems like a good idea, but unfortunately the basic rules didn't give me much inclination to try it out.

I would also like to stress, that I didn't expect BL to be another WHFB. Rather, I expected (and certainly hoped for!) something lighter and faster albeit with some tactical depth and complexity. IMHO BL lack the latter - at least in relation to the way the units move and fight. It's not a matter of realism or lack thereof. Being a euro-gamer myself, I don't care much for realism. As long as the game mechanics somehow reflect the general concepts of the theme (in this case commanding an army) while retaining the "good balance and proportions" (I don't know how to express this more clearly) you would expect from a game on BGG's top list, I'm satisfied. Unfortunately, I honestly don't think the BL mechanics do any of that very well. Rather, as I said, I think most of the rules are too simple and quite uninspired.

My feeling is that it's ok to post a short and personal review when you've given the game a fair chance, and I did that. At the same time I fully accept that other people find what they are looking for in this game, and I won't take that pleasure from anybody.
I value your opinion and all that yada yada; but don't you think your main gripe with the game (lack of complexity)is a bit ironic? You didn't include the lore rules, war council,(which makes certain lore cards more effective and more abundant), monsters, etc... The first 6 scenarios are like traning scenarios, in fact after I played the first scenario, I skipped all of them and played the last one. I realized that the other scenarios were like tutorials. The thing is I already played Battle Cry and C&C: Ancients (which actually portrays ancient combat better than most grognard games)and realized the meat of this game was the magic, war council, and monster rules...

You should fix your post to read after six (restricted and less complicated) games I've realized the game is too simple. WTF?

I think that's whats getting people peeved. You didn't play the whole game and you know it. Skip to the last scenario where you can alter your War Council, there are monsters, and lore is used. Come back after that and if you have the same comments then we'll just have to agree to disagree...I think the complexity is just right for a light wargame.

I would never play this game again without the lore rules, war council, monsters, unless I was teaching a newbie. It would feel incomplete and muted somehow...I hope you play the real game one day so you can make an informed decision...


Blue


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Jérôme
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Why should you play a 7th game if you didn't like the previous 6, even if that would be an advanced version?
By the way: today I read in the German Spielbox magazine a devastating 4-page review which concluded that BL including the lore is even worse than without.

Unimportant postscriptum: My personal experience so far with BL is based on just two games, and I quite liked it. In the meanwhile I'm awaiting C&C:A so I hope that will be at least as good as BL.
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Inno Van
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Quote:
Why should you play a 7th game if you didn't like the previous 6?
If you're playing for fun (which is the main point of this site! laugh ), you're free to spend your time however you please of course. We are here to enjoy ourselves playing games. Not as fufilling desk assignments from an editor.

However, if you're going to assume the mantle of a game reviewer and be paid geek gold for your efforts, playing a game using only the first 35 pages out of an 80 page rulebook and then saying "I don't think it's such a great game" is going to get a very unfavorable reaction from the community.

The real questions at the heart of this are, "What sort of effort is necessary to fairly review a complex game with an 80 page rulebook?" and "How many rules and components can you leave out and still have reviewed the game".

If you leave enough rules out of Poker, it becomes Go Fish. What would the reaction of the Poker community be if you played Go Fish, then posted, "Why I don't think Poker is such a great game"? First, they'd call you a moron for not even getting the rules of the game right. Secondly, they'd be incredulous at your grossly uninformed and simplistic review that missed all the parts of the game they enjoy.



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Alexander Corzo
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Tsaar wrote:
Why should you play a 7th game if you didn't like the previous 6, even if that would be an advanced version?
By the way: today I read in the German Spielbox magazine a devastating 4-page review which concluded that BL including the lore is even worse than without.

Unimportant postscriptum: My personal experience so far with BL is based on just two games, and I quite liked it. In the meanwhile I'm awaiting C&C:A so I hope that will be at least as good as BL.
It's not an advanced version to include Lore, war council, and monsters, it's the full version, I think there's a big difference.

Blue

ps- C&C:A is a great game and I think on equal terms with BL. I love them both. On the other hand, I'm really not too thrilled to play Memoir '44 or Battle Cry anymore. They lack that extra varnish of sophistication that BL & C&C:A have attained. They are still good games but I don't know if they'll ever hit the table again...
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Gabe Alvaro
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As of this post

18 thumbsup
10 thumbsdown
= +8 thumbs thumbsup

I don't believe that anybody would give thumbs up to this review based on its quality of writing and approach. I therefore must conclude that those 18 thumbs are agreements with the reviewer's content. I dare anybody to state that a review of this structure and competence could serve as a good template for game reviews.

OTOH, 10 thumbs down could well either be a rejection of the quality or the content.

Just observing.
 
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Inno Van
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Quote:
compared to hungy hungry hippos
Yes, La Terra. We already know about your claims of playing the game six times in one evening, you find it so simple.

So, are you a "real gamer" yet?
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Nathan Baumbach
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Innovan wrote:

However, if you're going to assume the mantle of a game reviewer and be paid geek gold for your efforts, playing a game using only the first 35 pages out of an 80 page rulebook and then saying "I don't think it's such a great game" is going to get a very unfavorable reaction from the community.
Except, aside from you and 2 or 3 other people commenting in this review, the reaction isn't very unfavorable. If anything, I see the reverse. There are a lot of people agreeing with the reviewer, and only 4 at most arguing with him.

He didn't like some of the variables of the game. So what? I don't like some of the Lore cards, as I feel they tend to be rather inconsistent in effect with other Lore cards.

This game is getting a beating at several other websites for some of the very same reasons this reviewer mentioned.

I agreed with you that I don't think the review is thorough. But now you are no longer arguing that. You are arguing that his review shouldn't exist at all. That I don't agree with. If you don't like dissenting opinions, you can skip these articles. But it doesn't mean that anything dissenting should be wiped clean from the boards altogether.

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Alexander Corzo
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This is not a review though, is it? The title is misleading, because he only played "battle" without the "lore" Seriously, if the title said something like, "First impressions not favorable" or something similar then I wouldn't have any problem with it. (he could even include it as a review of the "basic" rules without the full game"; which is what it is)

If someone postulates that they don't think BL is such a great game, don't you think we all would've assumed he actually played the damn game?! If he can't even play the full game once then how can you have the balls to review it? Play the damn game, that's all I ask as a person looking for reviews. If you play the game and hate it and come here and tell us why, that's fine with me. (you wouldn't here a peep out of me) I would just assume we have different tastes. To review a game and not actually play it is anathema to me. No excuses!

This is not a review, it's a first impression and should be moved to an appropriate forum, maybe Sessions, General? I can only assume this person has an axe to grind or doesn't understand that you actually have to play a game before you review it. The Whole Game!(actually there are people on this site who never play any games and still review themblush)

Why don't you just play a full game and edit your post with your final conclusions? Did it improve? Does it still suck? I'd be interested to know...

Blue
 
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Inno Van
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Quote:
I don't believe that anybody would give thumbs up to this review based on its quality.
Actually, the main trend the 20 thumbs up have is having never played the game, ever. Which makes sense: That's why they're reading a review.

Almost half of them don't have an avatar, making them newbies. But almost three quarters of them do log their game plays.

Of those that have played the game, the majority played it only once or twice, generally around Christmas, and not at all in 2007.

There's a few exceptions, but overall it's a group very inexperienced with the game at best, and not able to evaluate the review quality at all.

This is probably the same level of inexperience as the people who went
Utilities->GeekMod->ModerateReviews on February 20th and approved Hansen's review for their own share of geek gold. It would be interesting to see which volunteers approved it using the "anyone who wants to can be a moderator" tools under the menubar and see how many games of BL they'd actually played, vs how many reviews they just rubberstamped for the moderator GG.
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Darrell Pavitt
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Adrian Bolt wrote:
Innovan wrote:
There's a few exceptions, but overall it's a group very inexperienced with the game at best, and not able to evaluate the review quality at all.
This makes no sense whatsoever! There are certain principles of reviewing that are generic and apply to all game reviews. And obviously we're inexperienced with the game - if we were experienced there'd be no point reading a review!!!!
QFT!

Quote:
Almost half of them don't have an avatar, making them newbies.
Some of us just aren't interested in sticking little pictures next to our name, and some of us actually use our real names, instead of stupid aliases.

Incidently, I don't have the game, and read the review to see what a dissenting voice felt was wrong with it. Reading the review, I found that his complaints were relatively trivial (different coloured helmets smacks of "expansion", nothing else). The fact that he didn't play with the Lore rules is important, and correctly pointed out by later comments.

Moral of the story - make sure you read several different reviews, if you want a clear understanding.
 
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Lance Wilkinson

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Since there's one green, one blue and one red helmet on each die, the result is always 1/6 chance to roll a hit (or 1/3 if you include the orange). It would be much simpler to remove the 3 helmets and have 1 "hit" instead.
Seems like an aesthetic choice...3 colored helmets vs. 1 "hit" and 2 "miss" icons.

Given that all the other 'pips' are iconic, I don't have a problem with the colored helmets. There might even be some added appeal for the superstitious. ("
go green helmet, go green helmet!")
 
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