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Subject: What am I missing rss

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Necessary Evil
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I broke down and picked up a copy of this game even though I have played it and was not 100% sold. I have since played it a bit more, adding in the lore components. I am still not sold. Tell me what I am missing.

Here are my concerns.

All the scenarios provided with the game feel very much the same to me. Scoring for killing other units is limiting.

All the units feel the same to me. Lets see we have archers, swordsmen and Cavalry. Each comes in Green, Blue an Red. Really to me you have swordsmen and bowmen. The Cavalry just have better movement and a more powerful follow on attack.

Luck has a lot to do with winning. Both in what cards I get (This I can work with) but in the swings with the dice. Also the lore seems strong but in a bad way. Oh, yeah that red Cavalry unit yo were kicking my ass with just got nuked by my fireball from nowhere.

Now I have not given up on the game yet, but it feels to me like the free sample you get from the drug dealer...

"Hey kid there is more where that came from"

I would have liked to see some real difference in the sides, different race's developed and included in the main box. I know that DOW is planning something like this, however I have my doubts that the unit will play that much differently. After all we only have one command deck. (easy to fix this right?)

I also would have liked to see the war council be "in" the game, on the map and able to be targeted. Right now its just a bunch of guys in a tent someplace who reign down destruction.

So anyway, I am not posting this to bash the game, I want to hear from others what I am missing.

-M

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Mark McEvoy
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I don't think you're 'missing' anything. Different strokes for different folks. I sure don't like Puerto Rico as much as most here do, but I don't go looking for 'what I'm missing'. I just accept that some factors that appeal to others don't appeal to me, and some factors that appeal to me don't appeal to to others.

This is, effectively, a fourth generation design. Many of your concerns (basically, all but lore) are concerns that you would have had sooner if you played Battle Cry, Memoir 44, or Ancients. Those games continue to have followings despite factors like dice randomness, card randomness, and unit similarity, and the fact that the mastermind behind the battle has no on-field representation. Other people obviously don't consider that as much of an impasse as you do. More power to them.

malloc wrote:
All the units feel the same to me. Lets see we have archers, swordsmen and Cavalry. Each comes in Green, Blue an Red. Really to me you have swordsmen and bowmen. The Cavalry just have better movement and a more powerful follow on attack.


And better 'defense' against unmounted sword-wielding opposition. And a different unit type dictates different eligibility for tactics cards.

malloc wrote:
Also the lore seems strong but in a bad way. Oh, yeah that red Cavalry unit yo were kicking my ass with just got nuked by my fireball from nowhere.


Uh, both sides get lore. Your opponent spent his lore resources to nuke your cavalry; during the time he accumulated lore resources to that end, you were accumulating lore resources too. You should be able to do something comparable in game impact and it all evens out.
 
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I'm with Mark on this. Just depends on what you like.

BL has a lot more going for it than many give it credit for. The main criticisms center around the cards and dice as well as the lore. Well, as has been said, both players draw cards, both players roll dice, both players have access to lore.

Many people don't do well with games that involve random factors or that force them to adjust their tactics on the fly and BL plays to those strengths in a gamer.

As for it being rated so highly, why not? It's fun, there are scores of scenarios available online at the cost of a printed sheet of paper, there have been two additions already to the system, it plays very fast, it's got a high plastic-factor and victory is not subject to who sits on your right.

Expect this excellent game to remain in the Top 25 here on BGG for quite a while.
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Paul DeStefano
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DWTripp wrote:
It's fun
 
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Nate Merchant
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Michael,

get thee to a doctor, young man! It's an Amerigame with plastic minis! Are you running a fever?

Truth be told, after C&C:A, BL did nothing for me, even with the Lore and the CCG-related Council. It's a fine game, I'd just always rather play Ancients, or even Memoir with the Russian expansion for that matter.

And there is something I find just a bit tacky about all this "it's expandable! it's customizable!" crap. Most of the people who loved BL remarked first and foremost that it "was going to be such a cool game to collect." Some people get off on that, and very smart companies like FFG release expansion after expansion to players who need to customize. Whatever.

Now, granted, GMT's doing this too, but it feels like the original C&C:A was created as a game first, not as a kit. But maybe that's just stodgy and curmugeonly me.

In the end, I just don't need yet another Borg game with expansions if it doesn't radically improve and innovate upon the system. For me, BL doesn't.
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John Di Ponio
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Yep....personel taste! Sometimes with a game...I look for TOO much to do...or get the mechanics/playstyle all wrong. Take Ra. Love the theme but I did not like the game at all! Same with Puerto Rico was another game I do not care for....its all in what you prefer!

I like Battlelore....fn system...not hard to teach....have to see if it keeps my interest with the expansions.
 
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Philip Thomas
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malloc, you pretty much summed up my reaction, and I was pretty excited about the fantasy theme being a longstanding D&D player.

Put it up for trade and I'm sure someone will make an offer for it if only so as to get more dwarven minitiaures
 
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Alexander B.
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I had the same reaction to this game: way, way, WAY too much luck for my taste.

Is there skill? Of course, but having played many miniature gaming systems over the years--all of which were right on the verge of having too much luck for me due to needing the right rolls at the right time or you lose--this game, due to having to also get the right cards *and* the right rolls, is way over the edge and doesn't interest me.

Adding insult to injury, most scenarios are focused strictly or mostly on simple attrition... snore

I was very disappointed in this game and remain so after trying my best to salvage it via variants (like tying winning to controlling a location--it helped, but not enough).
 
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Gabe Alvaro
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:waves hand:
This is not the game you are looking for.
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Ted Kostek
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As many folks have commented, maybe this game just isn't for you.

malloc wrote:
All the units feel the same to me. ...


I don't get this one. A red infantry attacks w/ 4 dice but is slow, while a green attacks at half but can move fast. Cavalry have a pursuit option, but only three figures, making them both stronger and weaker. Ranged attacks, creatures, races w/ morale differences. I don't know what else you're looking for.

malloc wrote:

I would have liked to see some real difference in the sides....


DoW promises that stuff is coming. The game is still very new, but they have already released two expansions with more on the way. Maybe put this aside for a while and re-assess in another 6-12 months. There's only so fast they can release this stuff.

Granted it looks like a money pit, but I'm glad to be here. I might just hand over my credit card and ask for one of everything and two if it's extra cool.
 
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Jesse Smit
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Natus wrote:

Truth be told, after C&C:A, BL did nothing for me, even with the Lore and the CCG-related Council. It's a fine game, I'd just always rather play Ancients, or even Memoir with the Russian expansion for that matter.

And there is something I find just a bit tacky about all this "it's expandable! it's customizable!" crap. Most of the people who loved BL remarked first and foremost that it "was going to be such a cool game to collect." Some people get off on that, and very smart companies like FFG release expansion after expansion to players who need to customize. Whatever.

Now, granted, GMT's doing this too, but it feels like the original C&C:A was created as a game first, not as a kit. But maybe that's just stodgy and curmugeonly me.

In the end, I just don't need yet another Borg game with expansions if it doesn't radically improve and innovate upon the system. For me, BL doesn't.


Exactly, Battlelore is OK but with C&C:A I don't see why I'd play it. C&C:A is less random, has more depth and feels like a complete game rather than an expandable kit.
Plus in my minority opinion C&C:A has much better bits.
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Rob Buchler
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I had hoped that BL would be a great system, especially after getting CC: Ancients and liking that despite no real interest in ancient warfare, and having three/four Warhammer fantasy armies painted and always being interested in fantasy warfare, minus the heavy magic use.
BL plays better for me in 28mm than

But the BL "system" hasn't arrived to the point it needs to be yet to match all the hype it had - probably the most hype of any game in 2006. And it has yet to reach the point that will offer the game experience that has been teased and promised.

I asked early on how much it would cost to make BL THE game, and it looks like it has a ways to go. I still like the game, but I like CC:Ancients more at this point.
 
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Necessary Evil
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Alright,
so other than the cop out of personal taste, can someone please tell me what about the game makes it good in their opinion?

I played it one more time last night, I used a war council and some of the others lore cards. Still not sold. Maybe its personal taste, but something is missing from this game.

I guess the real problem is that its not like this was an inexpensive game. I have shelled out close to $80 for this thing,(yes i got it a a flgs) and I do not feel I have a complete game. Sure I have played other collectible games, but the stuff in the battlelore box seems more incomplete to me than other expandable games. I guess what I am saying s that if this is DOW's attempt to set the hook, then I think the need to use bigger bait.

-M
 
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Todd Rewoldt
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malloc wrote:
I guess the real problem is that its not like this was an inexpensive game. I have shelled out close to $80 for this thing,(yes i got it a a flgs) and I do not feel I have a complete game. Sure I have played other collectible games, but the stuff in the battlelore box seems more incomplete to me than other expandable games.


I have Call to Arms, and Epic is on it's way, and very much looking forward to the variety that the specialist packs will inject to keep the game fresh, but I don't see any of these changing the game in an irreversible way.

I've played many many games, and never felt like I was playing an unfinished prototype. Plenty of discovery is still happening for me with the base game at this point, and while I am certainly not calling for DoW to halt the production of expansion items, I would be fine for some time if nothing further was released for the game.

Neither CtA nor Epic are required to play an interesting game (in fact, the first version of Epic released online is what felt incomplete to me, the multi-player rules seeming to be a way of forcing more players into what is a 2-player game), to me, they are both alternative ways of playing, but by no means necessary. I am certain that many will prefer the larger game space provided by Epic boards, and I may come to be one of those, but for now I prefer the tinder box feel of the smaller base game board.

If the lore deck and all of its mechanics and associated game pieces were an expansion, then the game would feel incomplete to me (but, maybe that's hindsight), especially if I had been playing C&C:Ancients or Memoir '44 before. As constituted though, I don't feel during a game that if only X was included, the game flow would be improved. I'll go back and read to see if you've stated, but what is it you feel is missing?

What I enjoy about the game play is setting up assaults based around the lore cards and command cards dealt, and watching the ensuing skirmish develop. Maybe it's a matter of scope, expecting more than that from the game, but, for me it is about the perfect amount of depth, with the availibility of more, and promise of more, for those so inclined.
 
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Jake Mix
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Yup, I had the same feelings as you. While I do think the different units are significantly different, the willy-nillyness of the Lore began to bug me. I also noticed that the goblin's special abilities only help non-green foot units, which don't show up in any of the scenarios (though I suppose you could call their cheap "cost" an ability).

Then I bought Call to Arms, hoping this would add enough to bring the game to the level I would want. Upon reading through the rules and looking over the cards, I promptly decided to trade it away.

If the Lore cards were more tightly linked with the strategy and tactics of the on board play (a la the thief), I might be more interested. As it stands, I feel the game doesn't have enough oomph.

On the bright side, you can get pretty good trades for this sucker.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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malloc wrote:
can someone please tell me what about the game makes it good in their opinion?


Goblins. Riding giant lizards.
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John W
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malloc wrote:
I guess the real problem is that its not like this was an inexpensive game. I have shelled out close to $80 for this thing,(yes i got it a a flgs) and I do not feel I have a complete game.
There's your problem, IMO.

If you'd paid (almost) half as much, then your expectations would be satisfied by the bargain that Battlelore is when you only pay $46.90 for it.
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Ted Kostek
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malloc wrote:
other than the cop out of personal taste, can someone please tell me what about the game makes it good in their opinion?


Let's see if I've got your question. You want to tell you why I like it, except I'm not allowed to tell why I like it?

I like this game because it lets me play w/ lots of little fantasy-themed army guys w/o a lot of fuss.

I've played C&C:A, and it's a great game. After 2 plays, however, I still couldn't keep all the unit straight, and I hadn't even seen them all. The *rules* to BL seem simpler than the *summary sheet* to C&C:A.

I've played moderately hard wargames like EastFront and Rommel in the Desert. I love 'em, but the rules are ... non-trivial.

I've played Combat Commander, and it's a great game, but again the rules are not-so-simple.

W/ BattleLore the system *simple* (see a trend here?), and the game play is still fun. IMO, obviously.

Why?

In the base game you've got three classes of humans: infantry, bows, cavalry. Infantry and cavalry have further divisions. You have at least the spider, probably a hill giant, and maybe an earth elemental. You have terrain, including LOS. You've got spells. IMO, that's a lot of variety. I guess you feel differently.

Yes, there's randomness, but that applies to both sides, and it also applies to real world battles, too. By making the luck come in so many small packages (command cards, lore cards *and* dice), they've done a great job of smoothing out the luck factor.

On any given turn, you are confronted with a set of meaningful and interesting choices. Move forward or create a defensive structure? Save the lore tokens for a big spell, or take the small one? Active the section where you are attacking or defending? Lots of choices mean I have the ability to impact the outcome of the game, ie skill is rewarded.

Sure it's true that not everything is as cool as it could be, but IMO it's pretty good. No, strike that. It's not good. It's awesome. I love it.
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Gabe Alvaro
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malloc wrote:
Alright, so other than the cop out of personal taste, can someone please tell me what about the game makes it good in their opinion?

I'll list 25 things I like about BattleLore. You can assume I like how the mechanics of each of these things work and I like even more the interplay between all 25 things during the course of a game. To me it's like a symphony of gameplay. Here are the instruments:

banners, mounted units, foot units, summary cards, command cards, ordering, movement, combat/dice, endturn actions, section/tactics cards, Line-Of-Sight, melee/ranged combat difference, follow-on actions, retreats, terrain effects, morale effects, battlebacks, Mercenaries (races/specialists), creatures (and their special abilities), trampling, lore tokens, lore cards, Lore Masters, War Councils, War Council setup/limits, landmarks...

And I could probably go on. But why, when it really does come down to taste?

My big question is why are all those who would rather play something else still continuing to bother with it? There's nothing wrong with you, you just don't like BattleLore, so move on.

Edit: oh yeah, all that and a game plays in an hour too.
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Steve Cates
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malloc wrote:
can someone please tell me what about the game makes it good in their opinion?


I see where you're coming from. You like games without balance, in the sense of completely equal sides, like Star Wars: The Queen's Gambit or Dune.

I like those games too, but the reason I like Battlelore is that each turn I'm trying to upset that equalibrium. I'm trying to roll more dice than my opponent will if they're bold or capitalize on weak formations. Goblins have to be played differently than Dwarves or they will get slaughtered. Cavalry must be used to their strengths.

The tight ruleset with slight variation in unit type, terrain, and card bonuses allow for each turn to have a depth of strategy to it.

 
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Steve Cates
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Also, there are fan made scenarios that provide interesting total army disequilibrium.

Check out, http://www.daysofwonder.com/battlelore/en/adventures/fans/

48U To the Rescue!

160U Goblins surround

and

302U Jack and the Earth Elemental
 
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Edward Wehrenberg
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thatmarkguy wrote:
I don't think you're 'missing' anything. Different strokes for different folks. I sure don't like Puerto Rico as much as most here do, but I don't go looking for 'what I'm missing'. I just accept that some factors that appeal to others don't appeal to me, and some factors that appeal to me don't appeal to to others.


Well said.
 
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Darren Dew
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I like what everyone has said, including the contrary opinions!

I'll offer my "why" list, to add to the debate! But honestly, all the games in our houses don't get used the same amount, do they?

1. My kids can learn and play it; the mechanics aren't arcane.
2. We also like the bits; moving cool little minis and crashing them into one another is fun!
3. Its expandable, as you said. Room for as much, ah, "bling" as you want to pile on.
4. Its customizable in the game elements; if you're playing with a veteran, tack on the complexity, but if its yer Dad, play Call to Arms.
5. Its customizable from the bits perspective; I'm a hobbyist, and pour time into the look and feel of the game. I likely spend waaaaaaaay more time "hobbying" than actual gaming. With my schedule, I can hobby while my kids are asleep, but rarely can they play with me on school nights. So, I still get to feel like I'm "into" the game.
6. There is a large element of luck. Over the years, I've read numerous articles on this aspect of gaming and the pros and cons, likes/dislikes. The ONLY board games I've seen that have removed luck are Caylus and Diplomacy. I know I'm wrong, but thyose are the only two I've encountered.
7. The game elemets are beautiful. the book is prettier than most magazines I see.
8. The system is balanced, if lucky. I have suffered a couple of blowouts, where my son beat me by 75% or more, and I've recovered from some exrtremely unlucky rolls. A "luck" game does have its upshots and can put you through paces where risk, even extreme risk, can pay off.
9. I don't think luck plays a HUGE roll. Dealing with the cards you get and some of the dice rolls and finding your way through adversity is sometimes more rewarding.
10. My son likes big huge, honkin' fireballs.
11. Its adaptable; I'm regularly playing with HeroScape 3-D terrain to juice up the feel of the game. I also use magnetic bases, custom dice, and variant units.
12. It appeals to a nongaming crowd, believe it or don't. I engage other gamers when they observe us playing in a game store, and are intrigued.
13. Richard Borg is pretty crafty.
14. Its supported; there's a ton of additional scenarios available to provide just about any type of scenario you'd like. Oh, and new product is being added.

Izzat enough?
 
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paul canosa
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I think this title should be considered a gateway wargame. The rules are scalable and are pretty consistent with more complex wargames. The bits and simplicity of combat should scratch the itch of most hardcore wargamers and can attract new fans to the genre.

I have the game, its not my favorite but most people I introduce it to enjoy the experience.

Its also not the first game off my shelf.

expansions aside it does an adequate job of it.... but for the money and if you want to wargame your cash is perhaps better spent elsewhere.

BUT you could also do a whole heck of alot worse.

overall I give this game a better than mediocre score. Its good not great.
 
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Eric Schlais
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This was my first C&C game, and it's quickly becoming the least played despite it being my wife's prefered theme.

I really want to love/adore/cherish this game. I love high fantasy and history, and I love the potential of the battlefield card system combined with the possible Magic: the Gethering lore card system.

where this game is currently letting me down is that it has potential, and the expansions don't do much if anything to improve on this potential. I have all the expansions save the new Scotish Wars, and they don't add a single battlefield or lore card! They also don't really add any non-linear, unbalanced senarios that are so common and fun like I play in the other Borg games.

This game, especially in it's Epic mode should be about the most fun way to spend 90 minutes of boardgaming fun. The rules are great, as are the minis - but I feel like I am spending money on expansions hoping to make a great game better, and they are actually making it worse imo.

my 2 cents.
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