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Transatlantic» Forums » General

Subject: Rulebook and Setup Book... I got issues with them rss

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Chris Ruf
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Acworth
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Does anyone else find the separation of them annoying? Does anyone else find the concise rules a little "overly" concise? Why is the game end trigger only mentioned on the first page entirely separated from end game scoring? I didn't have as many questions as others have posted here, like what happens to coal when redeploying, or do you get your captains back when the ship is scrapped. I personally think those for the most part are easy to intuit. But that is no excuse to leave that info absent from the rules for sake of keeping them short.

I have the same problem with Concordia, and I f---ing love Concordia. Though I found Concordia's rules a bit more complete.

But the separation of the information between the rules and setup books in both games is frustrating because I'm never quite sure which one has the information I'm looking for. I was extremely baffled by the Concordia Salsa expansion as key setup information for salt isn't even in the rulebook, it's on the back of the Forum board, and you may decide to play with just salt and not the Forum.

I like Mac's games since and including Navegador, but the rules formatting for them really needs to be better.
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Murr Rockstroh
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Fleming Island
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All his games use the same rules formatting that I am aware of, even Navegador that you mentioned. Antike, same thing. It's how he writes his rules. Uwe has his style (you would love Ora et Labora's rules, they're in 3 or 4 books), Richard Breese has his style, Mac has his style.

It doesn't annoy me at all, I'm the primary rules reader and teacher in our game group, and our collection is over 750 games. I guess I've gotten used to reading rule books and realize there are just differences between how designers write their rules, and I just adapt as needed.
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Chris Ruf
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Acworth
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I can handle it. It's just not an optimal way to organize the information IMO. I don't have problems with multiple books. It's which bits of info that are separated in this instance coupled with the overly concise style. It would bother me less if setup was also included in the actual rulebook in addition to the setup guide. That way, once I know the rules, I just need to reference the setup guide because that's typically what I find people forget the most.

I realize it's hard to write rules, especially if you already know the game really well, but some of the questions that have popped up on these forums should have been caught and included in the rules. I am a big believer that (even though it can get overly wordy) a rulebook should be able to be understood by someone with near zero gaming experience. I had no big trouble learning any of Mac's games, but I have the benefit of having learned many others and having the gaming intuition for certain aspects that my not be explicitly stated. But that isn't something that should be relied on (whether by choice, accident, or negligence) by those that write and organize rules.

I still think there is no excuse in Salsa for putting the setup changes on the back of a component that might not even be used.
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James Mathias
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I love Mac's games. LOVE. But, I strongly dislike his rulebooks. They cause far more confusion than needed, and almost always the games are far simpler, and smoother playing than the rulebook leads one to believe.
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g colhoun
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Transatlantic, Antike, Concordia, Navegador are all superb games.

But the rulebooks are average; they feel old-fashioned, dreary and not always transparent. But the quality of each game greatly outweighs any drawbacks. It is not that the rulebooks are unclear, but they could be more accessible.

But, to repeat, brilliant games!
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MC Crispy
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I've been very happy with the rule books for Hamburgum, Navegador and Concordia. I've found them easy to parse and easy to learn the game from. Then I bought Transatlantic... oh boy that rulebook is hard to parse! I dislike the way the information is broken up (not between setup and rules, I've always liked that aspect of the approach), but I find the sections on deploying and transporting to be quite clumsy. The bit on scoring hurt my head too.

But now I've got it all internalised, I don't have a problem and the game is really excellent IMO.
 
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Nate Dorward
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I like the division between setup and rules. But otherwise..... yeah it's a terrible mess, with key pieces of information buried in unhelpful places, notable omissions and ambiguities and errors, and sometimes direct contradictions between setup and rules, or rules and card text. (E.g. the setup sheet omits to mention that initial ship purchases begin with the last player and go counterclockwise to the starting player.) It's really frustrating as I like the core mechanics of the game a lot--but this is the first Gerdts game where I spent the whole time constantly sorting through the rules or consulting BGG for clarification.
 
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