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Mansions of Madness: Second Edition» Forums » General

Subject: I don't get it rss

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Doug L
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After watching a couple of reviews and playing with the app, I can't help wonder what's the point of this being a board game? Since everything is done on the app, why would you bother with all the game pieces? Wouldn't it just be more efficient to have everything done in the app and make this a video game? I can understand using an app to enhance the experience, but this just seems like video game with a lot of unnecessary, cumbersome pieces.
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Chris Rogalski
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I had a very fun social experience playing this game with 3 other friends. I'm looking forward to more.
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Reverend Uncle Bastard
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canada_doug wrote:
a lot of unnecessary, cumbersome pieces.


If that is the way you feel about beautiful boards, a handful of dice and a bunch of miniatures are you sure you are a boardgamer?

This is meant as a jovial comment, not intended to insult at all...
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Alexander Steinbach
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The app has as much functionality as a deck of cards. Admittedly, a rather large deck of cards, carefully seeded and placed like in the original game, but still. No gameplay actually happens on the app (apart from the puzzles, though) so this is very much a boardgame. The only thing the app does is automate everything the keeper would have done in the 1st edition. Nothing more.
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Paul Lodge
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I find the app makes the immersion feel deeper, like you really are in the middle of the action. I have only played the game with my son so far and solo. I can imagine the game being a great social experience in a larger group, but it is one of the better solo gaming experiences so far out there, if that's something of interest to you.
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Doug L
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I love playing board games. In fact, Arkham Horror is one of my favorite games (lots and lots of stuff on a beautiful board). I think this one's reliance on the app leaves too much of it on the screen. I get the feeling that moving the pieces around is redundant since so much of the game is happening on the app. With a little more programming, the whole game could have been digital. The physical stuff is serving the video game.

In Arkham Horror, moving everything around IS the game. It is a very physical, analogue experience. That is what I love about games.
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Mike
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canada_doug wrote:
After watching a couple of reviews and playing with the app, I can't help wonder what's the point of this being a board game? Since everything is done on the app, why would you bother with all the game pieces? Wouldn't it just be more efficient to have everything done in the app and make this a video game? I can understand using an app to enhance the experience, but this just seems like video game with a lot of unnecessary, cumbersome pieces.


It's actually FFG's secret apparatus to lure in potential new members for some unfathomable and unscrupulous cult of miscreants. You need to open your mind. Once you "get it" you will see things that you will wish your mind's eye could forget!

"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtag!!!"
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You may call me
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I think the game may just not be for you. It's true that they could have just put everything in the app and made a digital game but that could be said about all co-op games.

What the app does is draw the AI cards for you and provide great atmosphere. Instead of 15+ decks of card on the table you have it all in the app.
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canada_doug wrote:
After watching a couple of reviews and playing with the app, I can't help wonder what's the point of this being a board game? Since everything is done on the app, why would you bother with all the game pieces? Wouldn't it just be more efficient to have everything done in the app and make this a video game? I can understand using an app to enhance the experience, but this just seems like video game with a lot of unnecessary, cumbersome pieces.


Because in the end, experiencing Mansions of Madness is still about sitting around a physical table with other people and cooperatively going through a story. Using a digital medium to enhance that experience and mitigate the fiddlyness and bookkeeping is far from it being a fully functional video game.

If the app became a full video game, it would probably be mediocre at best, but as a board game aid, the app does wonders in terms of bringing the pieces on the board to life through sound, atmosphere, and narration.

It's like asking why people still play Magic the Gathering, Splendor, or Ticket to Ride when video game versions of those exist; we all love the tabletop hobby because it's a physical experience we can enjoy with other people.
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B C Z
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One thing that the app does well is that it *doesn't* keep track of every possible variable on the map.

For example,
The app doesn't know where the characters are.
The app doesn't know how many actions you're allowed to take.
The app doesn't know your scores for puzzles.
The app doesn't know where the monsters are.
The app doesn't know which character is holding which items.

Keeping track of all of these variables would possible, but it wasn't done, and I think that was an excellent design decision.

It allows the app to be pretty darn *arbitrary*, which is what a cold, uncaring Mythos Universe should be doing.
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Erik Webb
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canada_doug wrote:
After watching a couple of reviews and playing with the app, I can't help wonder what's the point of this being a board game? Since everything is done on the app, why would you bother with all the game pieces? Wouldn't it just be more efficient to have everything done in the app and make this a video game? I can understand using an app to enhance the experience, but this just seems like video game with a lot of unnecessary, cumbersome pieces.


All board games can be made purely digital, so I don't get this point. Most play boardgames for the social or tactile nature of them. This companion app helps the immersion a ton for MoM.

This game may not be for you. And that is fine there are thousands of board games that not everyone will like.
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Josh
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I played this once over the weekend at TempleCon.
The one thing I really thought they could have added to the app was a die-roller. It does seem silly to hold up the tablet, read a description of the test, then put down the tablet, roll physical dice, pick up the tablet again, and enter the number of successes.
Could just as easily just tell the app how many dice to roll, with a "Clue/Focused" button to upgrade results.

Other than that, I think the app does just enough to allow you to play an "app vs. players" coop game and the experience was really fun.

 
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David Ainsworth
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I'd suggest playing it before making your mind up but it seems like it's already made up.
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You may call me
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jozxyqk wrote:
The one thing I really thought they could have added to the app was a die-roller.

Rolling dice is one of the most satisfying tactile experiences there is in board gaming. You put that in the app and then I could start to understand some of the complaints that it was taking away from the board gaming experience.
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Thomas Grogan
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Everything is not done all on the app. The app serves as the Keeper role and movements of the players and dice rolls are done on the board.

"You're not entitled to an opinion until you have all the facts"

You're talking out of your ass.
 
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Wil
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canada_doug wrote:
In Arkham Horror, moving everything around IS the game. It is a very physical, analogue experience. That is what I love about games.


I agree with the other folks who recommend trying before you buy as it sounds like this game may not be for you, but I did want to mention that the above sentence fully describes Mansions of Madness second edition as well.

The key detail to be aware of is that the monsters are not in the app (outside of their stats), the characters are not in the app, dropped possessions and cards are not in the app, barricades are not in the app, fire tokens and darkness are not in the app. In addition, the heath and sanity of your character are not in the app, nor any of your possessions, nor any conditions, nor die rolls, etc.

In short with the exception of tiles, tokens representing unexplored areas, and health stats on monsters, pretty much everything else is outside of the app. As others have mentioned, the app is really only fulfilling the role of the keeper in a) not revealing tiles or search items until you explore, and b) flinging nasty mythos events at you in between investigator turns.

I do agree that FFG could spend time developing a video game out of this and incorporating all of these elements from monster movement, to character stats and possessions and that would likely be a great video game. However, that's a hefty amount of additional programming and that's not what this edition is.

For me, replacing the keeper with the app has made this game a keeper for me. I don't expect it to hit my trade list and FWIW until this release came out, the first edition of Mansions of Madness was in my trade list. I have since pulled it out since it integrates with the app and is now worth keeping.



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Baker Odom
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jozxyqk wrote:
I played this once over the weekend at TempleCon.
The one thing I really thought they could have added to the app was a die-roller. It does seem silly to hold up the tablet, read a description of the test, then put down the tablet, roll physical dice, pick up the tablet again, and enter the number of successes.
Could just as easily just tell the app how many dice to roll, with a "Clue/Focused" button to upgrade results.

Other than that, I think the app does just enough to allow you to play an "app vs. players" coop game and the experience was really fun.



If they had decided to add this I literally NEVER would have used it and still rolled the physical dice.

And if they had decided to completely forgo physical dice and only have the option for digital rolls I wouldn't have bought the game.
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Kevin Seachrist
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wgerken wrote:
For me, replacing the keeper with the app has made this game a keeper for me. I don't expect it to hit my trade list and FWIW until this release came out, the first edition of Mansions of Madness was in my trade list. I have since pulled it out since it integrates with the app and is now worth keeping.


That right there is why I bought it. I didn't particularly enjoy the nervewracking setup the keeper has to go through for 1st edition. Get one card misplaced and you can wreck a scenario. Plus, now I get to be an investigator and enjoy the mystery as it's unveiled, along with all (not all but one) of my friends at the table.

The app removes the tedium from the game setup, removes the keeper himself, and retains all the fun in making the game fully co-op.
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Josh
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thebaker1983 wrote:
jozxyqk wrote:
I played this once over the weekend at TempleCon.
The one thing I really thought they could have added to the app was a die-roller. It does seem silly to hold up the tablet, read a description of the test, then put down the tablet, roll physical dice, pick up the tablet again, and enter the number of successes.
Could just as easily just tell the app how many dice to roll, with a "Clue/Focused" button to upgrade results.

Other than that, I think the app does just enough to allow you to play an "app vs. players" coop game and the experience was really fun.



If they had decided to add this I literally NEVER would have used it and still rolled the physical dice.

And if they had decided to completely forgo physical dice and only have the option for digital rolls I wouldn't have bought the game.


Well, my "issue" with the rolling of dice was literally with the act of picking up and putting down the tablet just to roll the dice, as we were passing the tablet around the table to read things that applied to us.
In practice, if I ever do buy MoM2E, I actually own a mini-HDMI-projector and would project the app right onto the wall so nobody would ever have to pick up the device.

But I certainly wouldn't complain about an at-least-optional die roller.
 
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T H
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The app makes a great board game, but it would be a very dull video game.

-Sincerely a Video games enthusiast.
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M M
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Because 10% isn't the same as 100%.

You still have a board being built on your table (which is pretty cool btw). You still have your figures. You still have the monsters. You are still drawing cards. You are still rolling dice. In a lot of ways it is more tactile, more 3-dimensional, more reasons to be an actual board game than a lot of Euros or abstracts out there which you could just as easily do with a pad of paper.

You're still sitting around with friends with everything out on the table. You're still talking about, "should I go here" or, "what about this map piece over here" or, "the monster is going to move over there." What you're doing is taking out a draw deck when you search a location and implementing rules for monster and NPC movement. You may as well ask, "why play with other people when doing a co-op when it would be much more efficient when 1 player just to do it by themselves."

There may be a number of criticisms one could make about it. But saying that as long as X% of it is being handled in app you may as well go 100% isn't a very legitimate one. Or at least not by someone who has played it.
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Chris
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canada_doug wrote:
With a little more programming, the whole game could have been digital.

Agreed, which is why they didn't put that programming in. MoM2 is deliberately still a board game.

I don't think you can get a feel for how much of the game is digital vs. physical without playing it. If the (very high) price tag dissuades you, try to get a demo play at a FLGS, or print out the counter sheets from here and the rules from FFG's web site and then use your Arkham Horror standees for the investigators and monsters. It's worth giving it a go before dismissing it.
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jozxyqk wrote:
thebaker1983 wrote:
jozxyqk wrote:
I played this once over the weekend at TempleCon.
The one thing I really thought they could have added to the app was a die-roller. It does seem silly to hold up the tablet, read a description of the test, then put down the tablet, roll physical dice, pick up the tablet again, and enter the number of successes.
Could just as easily just tell the app how many dice to roll, with a "Clue/Focused" button to upgrade results.

Other than that, I think the app does just enough to allow you to play an "app vs. players" coop game and the experience was really fun.



If they had decided to add this I literally NEVER would have used it and still rolled the physical dice.

And if they had decided to completely forgo physical dice and only have the option for digital rolls I wouldn't have bought the game.


Well, my "issue" with the rolling of dice was literally with the act of picking up and putting down the tablet just to roll the dice, as we were passing the tablet around the table to read things that applied to us.
In practice, if I ever do buy MoM2E, I actually own a mini-HDMI-projector and would project the app right onto the wall so nobody would ever have to pick up the device.

But I certainly wouldn't complain about an at-least-optional die roller.


I've found that it's best to have another person controlling the app during your own turn. You tell them what you're doing and as you're executing your movement, they can reveal the room or read the exposition on the Search tokens. Then if combat or another skill test comes up, they read the situation to you, tell you what to roll, and read the result (Pass or Fail, ignoring the other one).

This works very smoothly around our table. Also, I have a foldout cover/stand for my iPad, so the tablet can just sit upright on the table with everyone being able to view it.
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Doug L
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Thank you everyone for your feedback. I appreciate hearing from those who have played it. I will look to try it person in the future.
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R.P. Kraul
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canada_doug wrote:
I love playing board games. In fact, Arkham Horror is one of my favorite games (lots and lots of stuff on a beautiful board). I think this one's reliance on the app leaves too much of it on the screen. I get the feeling that moving the pieces around is redundant since so much of the game is happening on the app. With a little more programming, the whole game could have been digital. The physical stuff is serving the video game.

In Arkham Horror, moving everything around IS the game. It is a very physical, analogue experience. That is what I love about games.


Compared to AH, Mansions is simplistic almost to a fault. While AH is the better game, Mansions is still enjoyable, as it provides a more cohesive narrative.
 
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