Adelin Dumitru
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As you might know, the new addition to the Legendary series - Big Trouble in Little China - has not been designed by Devin Low.

This is noticeable from the start. There are no solo rules, Final Showdown is supposedly mandatory, instead of being just optional, there are different kinds of interactions between cards, there are weird phrasings, the text on the cards feels verbose most of the time, there is some peculiar coin-flipping involved for some of the cards, etc.

That game suffers from many other flaws, but the ones that I am concerned here with can be traced back to the choice of Upper Deck to go with another designer. Devin Low gets the fans, and, although he has ceased to be an active member of the community, he used to provide us with many insights into the game.

As far as I am concerned, Devin Low should be associated with all Legendary games (not Encounters, just the good ol' Legendary system). Who else is with me?

P.S.: I realize this might mean that there would be more on his plate and this might affect the Legendary Marvel release schedule. However, if they want to extend the system to other IPs, it is painful to see that Devin Low is not involved and that the quality suffers in consequence.

/rant over.
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Jerome Nowak
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AdelinDumitru wrote:
As you might now, the new addition to the Legendary series - Big Trouble in Little China - has not been designed by Devin Low.

This is noticeable from the start. There are no solo rules, Final Showdown is supposedly mandatory, instead of being just optional, there are different kinds of interactions between cards, there are weird phrasings, the text on the cards feels verbose most of the time, there is some peculiar coin-flipping involved for some of the cards, etc.

That game suffers from many other flaws, but the ones that I am concerned here with can be traced back to the choice of Upper Deck to go with another designer. Devin Low gets the fans, and, although he has ceased to be an active member of the community, he used to provide us with many insights into the game.

As far as I am concerned, Devin Low should be associated with all Legendary games (not Encounters, just the good ol' Legendary system). Who else is with me?

P.S.: I realize this might mean that there would be more on his plate and this might affect the Legendary Marvel release schedule. However, if they want to extend the system to other IPs, it is painful to see that Devin Low is not involved and that the quality suffers in consequence.

/rant over.


It's not Marvel, so who cares? whistle
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Stephen Mills
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I take take it you're not happy with BTiLC?
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Robert Forrest
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I'm not with you. New designers with fresh eyes is a great thing.

Sorry you didn't like this one.
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Max Laager
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me I do care legendary encounters are great too
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Jason Walker
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But if Devin's not a fan of the movie (and I don't know whether he is or not), then he shouldn't be the designer for the game. Brenner mentioned that the Buffy designers are fans of the source material, and that's important. UD is giving them the freedom to use the core game engine as a starting point and then make some tweaks to bring out the theme of that show, without going as far as the changes in the Encounters series.

I don't know much about the BTLC set, but if there are issues with the phrasing of cards or some of the interactions, that's probably something to put on the Development team, not the designer.
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Atnier Rodriguez
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TravelSized wrote:
But if Devin's not a fan of the movie (and I don't know whether he is or not), then he shouldn't be the designer for the game. Brenner mentioned that the Buffy designers are fans of the source material, and that's important. UD is giving them the freedom to use the core game engine as a starting point and then make some tweaks to bring out the theme of that show, without going as far as the changes in the Encounters series.

I don't know much about the BTLC set, but if there are issues with the phrasing of cards or some of the interactions, that's probably something to put on the Development team, not the designer.


Good point. You shouldn't force someone to work on something that they are not passionate about.

Do you want another Spidey 3 Venom catastrophe?!

I rest my queso.
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Adelin Dumitru
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Yeah, that's a good point. Maybe the thread's title makes too strong a statement. Devin Low should at least take a look at what the designers are doing, tho'...
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Need to get game in hand before judging on this one, but my initial thoughta are:

1. Isn't it better having different groups working on different legendary products to keep it fresh and the releases more frequent?

2. Please, please, pleeeeaaaaase don't screw up the Buffy expansion </3
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Andrew Kayes
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AdelinDumitru wrote:
Final Showdown is supposedly mandatory, instead of being just optional,


I think there's something to the cooperative/competitive balance of the Marvel Legendary sets that made Final Showdown a sticky wicket. In the base game, with that option, intending to play competitively, you were better off waiting until your deck reached the point of having two really good hands in a row. That never sat well with me when the game was new.

More importantly, I figure part of the reason it was made optional was that it was OK in the base set, but introducing extra Masterminds (a pretty obvious variation for future expansions) would have made it a wonky rule. I know some people include it with some house rule(s) to cover that wonkiness, but there doesn't seem to be a clear, obvious, concise way to deal with it.

In other words, I think there were good reasons for Final Showdown to be optional in Marvel, and those reasons may not apply to to BTLC. The balance between competitive/cooperative may be more refined (as it is in the first two Encounters, at least), and there probably are no expansions planned that could change the way Masterminds/Master Strikes/etc work.

It's annoying when the aspects of a game/story/etc which you really like happen to change as the medium/narrative/etc varies. I'm sure even if Devin Low had designed BTLC top to bottom, however, there'd be some aspects for each of us to think were better, and worse, and about the same.
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Erik Hatinen
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Having not seen the Little China game, I'm going to assume that Adelin's criticisms are accurate.

I don't think Low should have to be involved in any more game designing than he currently is. Your among the most keen on getting new sets for this game, and if he's even a consultant for more game lines, those new expansions will take longer to come out, be less frequent or both. Also, if Low doesn't really care about the source of the game, he won't be invested enough in it to do it justice. There have to be other people good at making games that like the material, and by now Low or some other game making veteran probably has advice or rules on making a good game.

For the clumsiness of the card text, Low could probably have fixed it, but there isn't a shortage of people with game knowledge and powerful English skills. Also, sometimes even really sharp people screw up on text. Magic the Gathering was designed by Richard Garfield, who is literally a genius (probably the technical definition, and certainly by the conventional, non-scientific definition). But if you interpret the original Regeneration card literally, all it could do is regenerate itself if it was hit with Disenchant or Tranquility. Later (by fourth certainly) it regenerated its creature only if it could target it. It wasn't until Mirage that it finally said what it should've from the start, "Regenerate enchanted creature." There were a few other mistakes, but I either forget them or else they take too long to explain.

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