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Subject: Marflow games- What are they like? rss

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Glenn Martin
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Does anyone have any experience with Marflow titles that they could share with us? I want to know more about them.
 
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Ron
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Well,

you get a perfectly fine handcrafted game:

- laminated map board, charters, shares, privates, trains, and phase table, all fully colored
- laminated tiles, professionally cut
- a stapled rule book

I'm pleased with the quality, everything is ready-to-play and looks really good. Here are a couple of images from my games. If you have any specific questions, just shoot!

1847 - Pfalz


1881 - Berlin Tramway


1842 - Hamburg / Schleswig-Holstein


18SA - South America
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JR
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Wolfram's games are very nicely produced. High quality components, mostly very usable artwork. The map art tends to be excellent with one exception. Some of the material art is a little busy in some games but it's not a large obstacle. My only qualm really is a totally superficial one which is that he uses game boxes that seem to be common with European stuff and less so with North American. His boxes don't like to fit in with the rest of my collection very well (just like Tresham's games and some others) and so they get their own section. I imagine if I had a large collection of european games I wouldn't even notice this. Not a criticism, just an observation.

Wolfram's also very pleasant to deal with and enthusiastic about the hobby.
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Ron
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jrebelo wrote:
His boxes don't like to fit in with the rest of my collection very well (just like Tresham's games and some others) and so they get their own section. I imagine if I had a large collection of european games I wouldn't even notice this.

Well, with a little stuffing and cramming here and there, all my 18xx boxes fit into one IKEA Billy. meeple
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J C Lawrence
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Production:

Laminated paper for everything. I particularly like his boards (laminated paper). Alas, the lamination is all glossy. Art is frequently garish. Map art can be both eye-searing and borderline unplayable -- but is thankfully trivial to replace. Share art smears poorly. Big charters. Trains and privates are Okay but no better. Track-tile has varied widely over the years but has mostly settled out to something reasonable. Tokens etc have also varied widely, but are now pretty nice.

Design:

Has recently taken to publishing many third party designs (it used to be almost all his own, Wolfram Janich) designs. Historically tends toward 1835 derivatives. Also tends to be under-developed -- leading to multiple versions of the rules and component tweaks over the years -- but after enough time they do eventually settle out (pay attention to what version of the rules you are getting or playing with). The final result is generally not astounding in any direction -- none are really brilliant in any direction -- but work well enough as games and a few have definitely clever bits. (Exception: 18Ruhr is a clearly bold & ambitious design, but seems still mid the post-publication development curve) Marflow Games is the only active 18xx publisher I know of to regularly release expansions, variant kits and fix-kits (Hartland Trefoil Ltd. also used to).
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J C Lawrence
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PzVIE wrote:
Well, with a little stuffing and cramming here and there, all my 18xx boxes fit into one IKEA Billy.


Not so much here.

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Tyler McLaughlin
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You should also prepare for the fact that Wolfram is constantly improving and (re)designing his games. It is very likely at some point you will need to upgrade some of his games as new versions are released.

As for the case of bad map art Justin mentioned, I think he's referring to 1869's map, and there is a very good replacement map here on the geek.

Most of his older titles are derivatives of
1835, but 18Ruhr plays very similarly to 1873:Harzbahn and as he introduces new designers into his stable, more variety is available. I'm quite fond of 1893 as a 2 player offering and usually recommend people incluDE it in their first order.
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Tyler McLaughlin
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Yeah, what JC said...

Unlike JC, I am not so concerned with the look of his games and in fact, I rather like being able to see a game set up across a room and be able to identify it by style alone. ☺

One thing I really like is how he makes his maps. I make all my PnP in the same style.

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Glenn Martin
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Thankyou everyone for your replies. I now have a better idea of the types of games they publish.
I noticed on their website that they list 18NL as a "new" game published the first quarter 2016. Is this a reworked/polish Age of Steam? (What the first 18NL became)or a new design set in the Netherlands?
 
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J C Lawrence
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It is most likely Helmut Ohley's 18NL. Not sure where you're getting the AoS connection -- that's both false as stated and extraordinarily unlikely.
 
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Glenn Martin
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OK. I looked into this. 18NL from Marflow appears to be a different design from SOH and there seems to be another 18xx set in Holland.
 
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J C Lawrence
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I'm aware of three different 1839 titles and two different 18NL, all set in the Netherlands, two David G. D. Hecht designs that also portions of that area, Steam over Holland, and I'm by no means certain that's an exhaustive list.
 
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