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Subject: Contender for worst rule book ever made. rss

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Paul Ferguson
Australia
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I own this game, and I know it will be a keeper for me as it plays fast, has some smooth mechanics and nice asymmetrical factions. Unfortunately, the rule book feels more like a example in looking pretty, rather than being a functional coherent set of instructions. It is one of the worst rules books I have come across due to a lot of missing details, which should have been sorted out if the game was play tested by a groups/s that knew nothing about the game play.

Some of the big issues I found were -

The rules don't actually explain the event tokens very well. Each faction needs its own page to explain each building in detail. More clarification around HQ's. There should have been a page or 2 for the 2-3 player variant instead of putting little bits in grey text all over the place, its an awful mess.

There were many more issues but most were addressed in the official FAQ book. This is an example of how not to do a manual. If it wasn't for communities like BGG, this game would be unplayable. Portal need to re-publish the rules, get them proofed and send them out free of charge to owners of the game.
 
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Dustin Crenshaw
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I feel like you haven't read too many rulebooks if you think this is one of the worst ever. It's not great. But with the FAQ, we only had to look to the rulebook 1 time in our first 2 plays.
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trevor

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Yeah i agree, this isn't even anywhere close to the worst rulebook ever.....not even close.
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Tom
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Rulebook is pretty damn clear to me and this is coming from someone who traded my copy away after four plays. I didn't have any problems with the rule book. Try Age of Napoleon if you want to read a universally considered bad rulebook.

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Randall Monk
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Of the hundreds of rulebooks I've read, this is one of the better ones.
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Michael Off The Shelf Board Game Reviews
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I can link you dozens of worse rule books without even relying on Kickstarter.. . Some of them are even in the hotness right now.
 
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WD Yoga
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Robinson Crusoe says Hi!
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Crazy Adam
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itmo wrote:
...a lot of missing details, which should have been sorted out if the game was play tested by a groups/s that knew nothing about the game play.


I would more accurately say that it was missing a good amount of clarification, but I understood how to play the game 99% right out of the box. No rulebook missing "a lot of details" would have allowed for this.

That behind said, I do agree with you about your point on play-testers. I am often surprised that questions that come up every single time when I teach games to new players have to be FAQed instead of found in the rulebook. (The Machine's "Matrix" structure is a clear example). It must have come up at some point with playtesters (who should always have the benefit of not having the designer or anyone else around to teach them the game or explain it as it plays). How are these questions not coming up? Or how come they are not addressed? This happens way too often in less-than-stellar rulebooks - questions that do not require thousands of plays to come up - but alas the rules need to be clarified or even appended by the designer/publisher after printing.

I personally don't understand why this happens as frequently as it does.
 
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Zach Mckinney
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Arkham horror's rule book is much much worse.
 
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Grant Rodiek
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Hi Paul --

Sorry you're frustrated by the rule book. If you have questions, please post them here, Geek Mail me, or email me at Grant@hyperbolegames.com.

grant
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Michael Off The Shelf Board Game Reviews
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freechinanow wrote:
itmo wrote:
...a lot of missing details, which should have been sorted out if the game was play tested by a groups/s that knew nothing about the game play.


I would more accurately say that it was missing a good amount of clarification, but I understood how to play the game 99% right out of the box. No rulebook missing "a lot of details" would have allowed for this.

That behind said, I do agree with you about your point on play-testers. I am often surprised that questions that come up every single time when I teach games to new players have to be FAQed instead of found in the rulebook. (The Machine's "Matrix" structure is a clear example). It must have come up at some point with playtesters (who should always have the benefit of not having the designer or anyone else around to teach them the game or explain it as it plays). How are these questions not coming up? Or how come they are not addressed? This happens way too often in less-than-stellar rulebooks - questions that do not require thousands of plays to come up - but alas the rules need to be clarified or even appended by the designer/publisher after printing.

I personally don't understand why this happens as frequently as it does.


It happens because designers/publishers fail to put the game before a fresh group before sending it off to publication.

Simply print a copy of the game and hand it to people who have zero experience with the game. Then sit in a corner with your mouth shut and a note book. I guarantee this issue would go away quickly =)
 
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Evil Jello
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It's nowhere near the worst rule book I've seen, but it's not great either. I'd like an "AI trogs for dummies" reference sheet to cover the gazillion ambiguities that came up in my first game. Hopefully the community will compile something since the game is so popular.
 
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Paul Ferguson
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HerrohGrant wrote:
Hi Paul --

Sorry you're frustrated by the rule book. If you have questions, please post them here, Geek Mail me, or email me at Grant@hyperbolegames.com.

grant


It feels rushed and it is missing some major details that came up in the first game. Most of which were answered in the FAQ, but this is just lazy production. Sure, I understand that sometimes things get missed, but some people learn in a different way to others. Some are fine with just text, while others needs pictures to visualize the exact wording.
 
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W. Cracker
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itmo wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
Hi Paul --

Sorry you're frustrated by the rule book. If you have questions, please post them here, Geek Mail me, or email me at Grant@hyperbolegames.com.

grant


It feels rushed and it is missing some major details that came up in the first game. Most of which were answered in the FAQ, but this is just lazy production. Sure, I understand that sometimes things get missed, but some people learn in a different way to others. Some are fine with just text, while others needs pictures to visualize the exact wording.


I just got my copy and haven't cracked the shrink yet. Are the not a lot of illustrations in the rules set as I like many others am a visual learner.
 
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Grant Rodiek
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MrMzchf wrote:
itmo wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
Hi Paul --

Sorry you're frustrated by the rule book. If you have questions, please post them here, Geek Mail me, or email me at Grant@hyperbolegames.com.

grant


It feels rushed and it is missing some major details that came up in the first game. Most of which were answered in the FAQ, but this is just lazy production. Sure, I understand that sometimes things get missed, but some people learn in a different way to others. Some are fine with just text, while others needs pictures to visualize the exact wording.


I just got my copy and haven't cracked the shrink yet. Are the not a lot of illustrations in the rules set as I like many others am a visual learner.


There is a Watch it Played Video, if that helps.
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W. Cracker
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HerrohGrant wrote:
MrMzchf wrote:
itmo wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
Hi Paul --

Sorry you're frustrated by the rule book. If you have questions, please post them here, Geek Mail me, or email me at Grant@hyperbolegames.com.

grant


It feels rushed and it is missing some major details that came up in the first game. Most of which were answered in the FAQ, but this is just lazy production. Sure, I understand that sometimes things get missed, but some people learn in a different way to others. Some are fine with just text, while others needs pictures to visualize the exact wording.


I just got my copy and haven't cracked the shrink yet. Are the not a lot of illustrations in the rules set as I like many others am a visual learner.


There is a Watch it Played Video, if that helps.


Thanks for reminding me. Rodney always does a nice job.
 
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Ryan Gast

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This was one of the easiest reading rulebooks I have ever read. Then we sat down and played the game twice in a row yesterday.

There were so many little rules questions and scenarios that came up in both our games and the rulebook never mentioned any kind of clarification on nearly every question we had.

This led to a very frustrating time. Yet at the same time we loved the game play and the game itself very much and will be playing it again soon.

Most of the rules that came up we just guessed and looked up later online for clarification after skimming the rulebook so the game didn't drag.

I really can't stress enough how many little situations came up in both games we played where we just didn't know what to do and there was nothing in the rulebook.

Sorry I keep repeating myself but a very easy to read rulebook but incredibly frustrating for rule ambiguity clarifications but tense and very fun gameplay! We will be back for more.
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Anders Isaksen
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Esvath wrote:


Yeah and from the same publisher
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Ryan Gast

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I think if those last few pages of artwork and a small amount of background information had been made into skill card and building clarifications as well as maybe a faq sheet and the info on Trogs in a 3-4 player game all in one area would have been very helpful and maybe they will vastly improve the rulebook on future print runs.
 
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