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Subject: Need help deciding... rss

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Bernardo Gonzalez
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(My intention is not to be offensive to the designers in any way or form, if it seems so, I apologize in advance)

Ok gals/guys, I own a bunch of games. After a while some games seem to be very similar, with small deviations, but in essence the same. One thing that I like on the new games that are coming out is the emphasis on narration and how theme and mechanics tend to merge. Take Pandemic Legacy, or Time Stories, even Robison Crusoe.

I saw this game and I was astonished with the components, they are great. But taking a closer look the game itself seems to be as simple as: draw an encounter, fight, get loot, rinse and repeat. There are sooo many games out there that do this, that is not even funny. Yes, interesting mechanics with the dice, but other than that, plain vanilla (from the narration perspective).


For example (on top of my head) you have games with similar patterns: D&D boardgame series, Myth, posthuman and PFACG. Most of this have stronger Narrative than what I saw on this game in Kickstarter

Taking this into account, does it make sense to buy it? Don't get me wrong, it seems to be a very well produced game, but gameplay it seems inferior to all of the above.

BAG
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Reverend Uncle Bastard
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Gameplay, in my opinion, actually looks way more sophisticated than D&D and PFACG at least. TMB has lots of interesting ways to use dice (counters, supplies, combat, etc.) plus uses for even failed rolls. D&D has straight up beat a number or not dice rolling. Same with PFACG, almost no ways to mitigate your die rolls. TMB looks like it is doing something really interesting with dice. I can't speak to Myth or post-human, but this game looks highly superior to both D&D board games and PFACG.

From a narrative perspective, this game does have choices on the encounters and an ever escalating threat, but I don't believe it was designed as a primarily narrative game. I think the intent is to create an interesting blend of skills trees, leveling up and dice combat, which I believe from watching the videos it has achieved.
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Martin Gallo
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I think we all have to decide for ourselves based on the available information.
 
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Joshua Nash
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I think it really depends on how you define "gameplay" and what you are looking for.

I agree with the Reverend that something like the D&D games might (emphasis on "might") have stronger narrative, but falls flat in the tactical department.

For me, I need a game to make me think. If you've watched the videos closely, it's clear that TMB offers some serious tactical decisions to make in all phases of gameplay.
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Jim Cote
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In my mind, I am comparing and contrasting it to Mage Knight. I want serious tactical decisions (like Joshua mentions), a sandbox feeling, room for playing style, risk management, even clever combos.
 
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David Boeren
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Any comparisons to Mistfall?
 
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Joshua Nash
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dboeren wrote:
Any comparisons to Mistfall?


None. (I owned Mistfall.)
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Bernardo Gonzalez
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ekted wrote:
In my mind, I am comparing and contrasting it to Mage Knight. I want serious tactical decisions (like Joshua mentions), a sandbox feeling, room for playing style, risk management, even clever combos.


I think Mage Knight is a strong Epic game with strong Narrative backbone. I don't know if both games compare on that aspect.

When I play Mage Knight I feel that I'm walking through the land pillaging villages, hireling people, conquering cities. (MK is one of my favorite games, even worked on a fan expansion for it "Quest Cards").

I don't know if I would get the same feeling on this game.

reverendunclebastard wrote:
Gameplay, in my opinion, actually looks way more sophisticated than D&D and PFACG at least. TMB has lots of interesting ways to use dice (counters, supplies, combat, etc.) plus uses for even failed rolls. D&D has straight up beat a number or not dice rolling. Same with PFACG, almost no ways to mitigate your die rolls. TMB looks like it is doing something really interesting with dice. I can't speak to Myth or post-human, but this game looks highly superior to both D&D board games and PFACG.

From a narrative perspective, this game does have choices on the encounters and an ever escalating threat, but I don't believe it was designed as a primarily narrative game. I think the intent is to create an interesting blend of skills trees, leveling up and dice combat, which I believe from watching the videos it has achieved.


I agree that the game seems more sophisticated from the tactical standpoint. Both PFACG and D&D have very simple mechanics (almost random like). I don't see the narrative choices in this game, at least on what I've seen. I'll double check (I was muli-tasking while watching the video and I'm not really good a it, just ask my wife). What I saw was a ton of tactical choices with a very simple choice on the card drawn either A or B. Strong narrative choices in my mind are for example: shall I venture into the village, should I kill the monks on the monastery to get the Artifact (reference to Mage knight). Consequences on my actions that affect the game narrative and story. I have a goal, am i part of an overarching story, i get that from D&D. Maybe this is scenario driven, and this game might come with scenarios (I would like to see these scenarios if possible).


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Martin
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reverendunclebastard wrote:
Gameplay, in my opinion, actually looks way more sophisticated than D&D and PFACG at least. TMB has lots of interesting ways to use dice (counters, supplies, combat, etc.) plus uses for even failed rolls. D&D has straight up beat a number or not dice rolling. Same with PFACG, almost no ways to mitigate your die rolls. TMB looks like it is doing something really interesting with dice. I can't speak to Myth or post-human, but this game looks highly superior to both D&D board games and PFACG.

From a narrative perspective, this game does have choices on the encounters and an ever escalating threat, but I don't believe it was designed as a primarily narrative game. I think the intent is to create an interesting blend of skills trees, leveling up and dice combat, which I believe from watching the videos it has achieved.


The tactical aspect of this game looks great.

Wouldn't it be great if it could be combined with an epic campaign of exploration and adventure, roaming around a huge randomly generated map, with staircases and trapdoors to multiple levels, representing the inside of a huge castle!!
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Jochen Wiesner
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I'm with Bernardo in this one. The tactical part of the game looks really intriguing, but spending 130$ on that for the game (or even 180$ with the extra characters added) seems really high. If it connected the encounters by some clever means to create an overarcing story, I might change my mind though.
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David Boeren
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Yeah, it's clearly a game I'd pay $80 or so for (with nice tokens instead of chips, mats instead of neoprene, etc...), but not twice that.
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Baramon
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Almost any KS game is like in the video and this one is ain't exception https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AtK_YsVInw8
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Joshua Nash
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Baramon wrote:
Almost any KS game is like in the video and this one is ain't exception https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AtK_YsVInw8


George Carlin was brilliant!

But what's your point?
 
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Baramon
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Considering number of coming out games 99% of KS games doesn't deserve hype or price they asked. It's another over hyped game, that actually doesn't have anything really new. Thick mats and chips are just gimmick. I'm sure it's a great game for anyone that doesn't have game with similar mechanics. CMoN has basically created this whole thing visuals over game mechanics hype and in reality their games are BS in terms of mechanics but good looking.

This piece by Carlin perfectly represent BS pitch fest of any KS campaign.
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Joshua Nash
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Baramon wrote:
Considering number of coming out games 99% of KS games doesn't deserve hype or price they asked. It's another over hyped game, that actually doesn't have anything really new. Thick mats and chips are just gimmick. I'm sure it's a great game for anyone that doesn't have game with similar mechanics. CMoN has basically created this whole thing visuals over game mechanics hype and in reality their games are BS in terms of mechanics but good looking.

This piece by Carlin perfectly represent BS pitch fest of any KS campaign.


Ah, I see. So you are familiar with CTG? You have played their Hoplo series and found the components superfluous? You also believed the tactics offered in the games were subpar?

What's more, you see TMB as derivative? Not deserving of 600+ backers and their support and excitement?

Alright, fair enough. You may continue with your hyperbole.
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Bernardo Gonzalez
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First thanks for the responses. They did really help

Closing the loop, decision is done: Will not back the game.

Reasoning:

- I believe that any project/product is a concept offering. Basically a designer/company offers a game with a vision, and this offering consists in what we called in the MBA "the product". In case of TMB, 'the product' is a highly tactical game on where you use dice as 'counters', actions, status, technology trees, etc. In addition, their offering is a superb quality game, including mats and chips. All good in all, however (there is always a however). IMOHO, they concentrated on the mechanics instead of the game itself. Yes, as it has been mentioned, you can carry some of the statuses from game to game and maybe chain them. But I feel that as of right now the game offering has a very low competitive advantage to other games IMOHO. An example of mechanics vs game is the game "Progress Evolution", the first time I saw it, there was little not to like, a game that centered in tech trees, I love tech trees. I bought it and it fell flat, no good dynamics, too complex to get your head around it, ton of analysis paralysis. I dislike that game a ton (btw , its for trade if you guys want it ). In summary, a good game is not only the mechanics, but the experience, which includes mechanics, but also includes story, innovation, excitement, dynamics etc. The oposite to this is Time Stories, too much narrative, too little mechanics (I know... people love Time Stories... I do not, main reason, it is just a story not a game, once you play it 1 time, it stops, my wife loves it though).

- Price vs Value. Yes, the components are superb, but really... with 120 dollars I can easily buy 3 games, good games btw. Yes, Kickstarter is a conduit to help and support companies to grow, to Kick start . I don't know that this is the case, at least I don't get that from the offering (see above)

- The basic question: will this game hit the table enough. I think the answer is no. Too complex, too long, too raw and too much stuff. Simple is good, I just picture myself explaining this to my wife, her head will explode. Maybe the game is not for me, and my current life situation (two kids a 3 year old and a 1 year old).

Designers and backers: please do not take this personal, I tried to be un-bias here. I think that today's trend is simple mechanics strong narrative. People will weight cost vs. value, but even then people might always disregard this if the offering and competitive advantage is strong enough (look at Time stories, horrible cost vs value offering, but its selling good). Nonetheless, all this conversation, I believe the game is funded, so you guys are good to go. I hope the game is amazing and that I'll regret not backing it.

Take care.

BAG

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David Boeren
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Baramon wrote:
Considering number of coming out games 99% of KS games doesn't deserve hype or price they asked. It's another over hyped game, that actually doesn't have anything really new. Thick mats and chips are just gimmick. I'm sure it's a great game for anyone that doesn't have game with similar mechanics. CMoN has basically created this whole thing visuals over game mechanics hype and in reality their games are BS in terms of mechanics but good looking.


I will heartily agree with your assessment of Cool Mini or Not. They tend to make low quality rules (I'm being polite here) and sell their games based on shoveling lots of minis into the box.

But, this is not a CMON game. Nor is there any similarity to CMON. Perhaps you've noticed that these games do not have any minis? Also, they have good rules. So yeah, not sure what that has to do with anything. Nice mats and chips may have some "cool bits" factor, but only a small amount compared to minis and unlike minis, you cannot reuse them in other games. A lot of people buy CMON or similar games just to use the minis in their D&D games or whatever. I doubt anyone is planning to do this with the neoprene mats, dice, and chips from Too Many Bones.

Doesn't have anything new? It's got a tech tree based on a dice building mechanic and ways to convert those dice into other dice through special actions. Maybe I'm out of touch, but that doesn't sound stale to me. Are there lots of games using this approach that I don't know about? I don't know if they're the absolute first, but it's certainly not common and they've probably taken it to a higher degree than other games (if any).
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David, it just doesn't click for me paying for poker chips with weak art and thick mats for 100+. I gave CMoN as an example of pure BS on KS and even Blood Rage was BS ok game but nothing mind blowing. 7th Continent it's just adventure book put down in cards I can keep on. On the other hand as TS mentioned we have Mage Knight no KS overpriced nonsense but yet unique game.

To each his own
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David Boeren
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Baramon wrote:
David, it just doesn't click for me paying for poker chips with weak art and thick mats for 100+.


I'm with you here too. The artwork looks goofy to me too and the price is not just high, but getting higher over time as we unlock more content that carries additional backer costs. While the mechanics of the game seem interesting to me, I'm definitely passing on this game.

But, I still feel the game looks like it offers good gameplay and ideas and that while expensive, I can't really say it's a ripoff because you ARE getting expensive components. Just not everyone wants those, which is fine.

I'm actually interested in picking up a copy of Hoplomachus (either original or Rome) to try that out based on its good reputation, but then too Hoplo is about half the cost or less of Bones which is a big difference.
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Damon Asher
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This game reminds me a lot of Assault on Doomrock, a game I absolutely love. I felt like I overpaid for AoD at the time, but I'd pay twice as much to get it back if I lost it. I'll take a chance on Too Many Bones I think. The cost is high, but the stuff is nice and the gameplay looks very fun. I think I'll take a look at Hoplomachus while I'm at it. Apparently interesting abstract tactical combat games are my thing
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Paul Bauman
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After getting firmly addicted to Runebound 2nd edition, I've been looking for an adventure system that allows for more decisions in the combat, and this game definitely approaches that idea.

I'm slowly reconciling with the $112 expense. The $100ish range is basically the new normal for KS designs that are aiming for the non-micro, non-casual bracket.

I can't quite discern if the variability of the combat (from the more robust dice system) will offset the relatively low number of encounter cards, but judging from the success of the campaign so far, I don't doubt that expansions will be in the works.

I also appreciate that the different versions of Hoplo are still being produced, which gives me more hope for the longevity of this game as well. I've seen similar campaigns for interesting systems not go much further than the initial fulfillment, using KS as the primary sales driver without much post-campaign production or distribution. This doesn't seem to be the case with Chip Theory Games, which is encouraging.
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JPN38 wrote:
Baramon wrote:
Considering number of coming out games 99% of KS games doesn't deserve hype or price they asked. It's another over hyped game, that actually doesn't have anything really new. Thick mats and chips are just gimmick. I'm sure it's a great game for anyone that doesn't have game with similar mechanics. CMoN has basically created this whole thing visuals over game mechanics hype and in reality their games are BS in terms of mechanics but good looking.

This piece by Carlin perfectly represent BS pitch fest of any KS campaign.


Ah, I see. So you are familiar with CTG? You have played their Hoplo series and found the components superfluous? You also believed the tactics offered in the games were subpar?

What's more, you see TMB as derivative? Not deserving of 600+ backers and their support and excitement?

Alright, fair enough. You may continue with your hyperbole.



Seriously, shouting out number of backers or Company name doesn't justify that game is good. People buy Kanye West albums so what? It doesn't mean it's a good music. Production Quality is a must not a benefit, but good game play is whats most important here it seems weak but again it's my pure imho you can buy it if you like.
 
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Joshua Nash
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Baramon wrote:
JPN38 wrote:
Baramon wrote:
Considering number of coming out games 99% of KS games doesn't deserve hype or price they asked. It's another over hyped game, that actually doesn't have anything really new. Thick mats and chips are just gimmick. I'm sure it's a great game for anyone that doesn't have game with similar mechanics. CMoN has basically created this whole thing visuals over game mechanics hype and in reality their games are BS in terms of mechanics but good looking.

This piece by Carlin perfectly represent BS pitch fest of any KS campaign.


Ah, I see. So you are familiar with CTG? You have played their Hoplo series and found the components superfluous? You also believed the tactics offered in the games were subpar?

What's more, you see TMB as derivative? Not deserving of 600+ backers and their support and excitement?

Alright, fair enough. You may continue with your hyperbole.



Seriously, shouting out number of backers or Company name doesn't justify that game is good. People buy Kanye West albums so what? It doesn't mean it's a good music. Production Quality is a must not a benefit, but good game play is whats most important here it seems weak but again it's my pure imho you can buy it if you like.


"Production quality is a must, not a benefit." I'm not certain what this means.

Provided a game isn't inherently broken, "good gameplay" is an opinion.
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