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Subject: Just some suggestions from an old soldier. rss

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Mark Kaiser
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I have watched gameplay, and read a great deal on the overall mechanics of the game. I feel with in-house rules and slight calculated addendums this game could be EPIC. I'll explain... 1. "PALS"- The wild and wooly west had an encyclopedia worth of colorful, and deadly characters. The Legends didn't get that way on their own, they had help. Johnny Ringo, Charlie Bowdry, 'Doc' Scurlock, Jeremiah Johnson, Jim Bridger, "Turkev Creek" Jack Johnson, Richard Brewer,etc. So my idea is this, for each level(black area) of wanted or Marshal track your legend is at, you draw a 'PAL' card or add a descriptive token to your character sheet saddlebag. This represents who is riding or walking with you. They give you an edge in combat, and may grant a special ability. However, if you lose a shootout, instead of taking a wound you lose a pal. They are removed from the game. 2. Combat- This, to me, feels very weak consequentially. If your pals tokens are all gone, and you start taking wounds, you better skin out and heal otherwise, you end up in boot hill. Your LP stays on the track, but your character is dead. 3. "The Hooskow" (jail)- For each turn your character stays in jail, you draw a poker card. If a face card (J,Q,K,A) is drawn, you escape. Move to any bandit hideout and gain 2 wanted levels. If a face card of Hearts is drawn, you are Pardoned, and play resumes normally. If no Face Card is drawn, you discard and gain a Wound (Pals cannot help you, unless one has that ability). If you run out of wounds, you are hung. Same death rule applies. I feel this brings an added sense of realism to the game, of the times. Also, maybe story cards could impart a special PAL or situation on your character as well, like a mission ie. Break a pal out of jail. Anyway, some some thoughts on the process as a whole, from a 48 yr old gamer.
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Remus Rhymus
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I think that this situation absolutely requires
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a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody's part!
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Some interesting ideas regarding Pals, but the idea of sitting in Jail and trying to draw a face card to escape sounds awful.
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Mark Kaiser
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That's right, it's meant to basically wait-to-be-hung. As was very common back then. However, if you have a "PAL", say like Ike Clanton, he may grant the ability to break you out. Loss of these pals during shoot outs could have a nostalgic effect, and make for some great stories. The whole trot around collecting till the end just seems a little too vanilla for how violent the times were. It may also create players who really have to think on their feet, if they're outlaws (because they had to). "With lead and blood, he gained such fame, till everyone feared the name...of Ringo". -Lorne Greene "Ringo"
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Remus Rhymus
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I think that this situation absolutely requires
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I get that it's a thematic idea, but from a game-play perspective, a player could get really unlucky and never draw the needed card or have the necessary Pal to break you out. It would suck if (what appears to be) a fast-paced-do-what-you-want sandbox game grinds to a halt for one player because their only "choice" becomes draw a card, see what happens; if you draw lucky you get to continue playing the game, if you draw unlucky you don't.
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Josh Gribble
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1. I like your pals ideas. I don't see it fitting in this release of the game, but could make excellent expansion material. I'm not crazy about term pal- maybe sidekicks, or partner (pardner). Or if the idea is to get a bunch of pals, you could use gang or posse.

2. I think the game intentionally keeps combat light and avoids player elimination. It is used to throw peoples plans off (and have fun) rather than to kill them. I personally like that, but it would be pretty easy to institute house rules that send a player to boot hill as you mentioned. I think this would make for pretty dramatic change in play style though. A slightly modified suggestion is that instead of dying you go to the hospital and must heal yourself on your next turn when your wound level is full.

3. Like Remus, I don't like the idea of player in jail trying to draw a card. I do however, like the idea of story cards that use the jail such as breaking out a new pal or defending the jail against a breakout.
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Mark Kaiser
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I suppose it depends on what the expectations of how a game based in the Wild West should be. A cute romp with the kids (just collecting points) , or a more mature experience (with consequences to your decisions). The Wild West was the bloodiest, most harsh, unforgiving time in the history of our nation. Small towns like those represented here, had murder rates higher than modern day Chicago. That is why those legends became legends, they were good... With a gun, a horse, staying a step ahead of bounty hunters, or the Pinkertons, etc. If they got caught, it was over. The 'jail' rule, or 'gallows'rule, puts that into perspective. It pulls the reins on LP hunters who just waltz out of jail, with no lasting consequences. It can benefit that same outlaw as well, if they get lucky, or have an ability that grants them a way out. I hope this makes sense, being jailed today would suck, but back then, it was a death sentence. Too few lawmen, too much crime. -Thanks for the replies!
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Mark Kaiser
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That's the vanilla, family-oriented Wal Mart type board game rules I mention, which it could be, but as a KS'ed project with that aim, nah, not for me. I'd just get little kids Candyland, or something. I use the term 'PALS', as that's what a friend of Billy the Kids scratched on his tombstone, after sneaking into the cemetery where he was buried one night. The word was later properly inscribed by the authorities to honor him. -Thank you for the reply!
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Mark Kaiser
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I also should have clarified that before you are caught (by the sheriff or Marshal) a shootout occurs. The Marshal player can determine just how bad he wants that outlaw based on wounds received, if he loses interest, he may move on his turn 'skin out', but the outlaw may follow on their turn! (Hunting you!) The sheriff however is killed, you gain 1 LP and 2 WPs. The sheriff then gets replaced at the jail whenever a bandit does outside of town. I think it could work.
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Clinton Rice
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These rules make Marshal far more viable than Wanted. Good bye balance.

1. Marshal points are only lost intentionally. Marshal will have the edge on PALS.
2. Wanted players are more likely to end up dead or lose turns in jail.
3. Unless they draw a high value heart, Wanted players don't have the option to change tracks after jail. They remain wanted.

For these reasons, it's clear few players would choose the Wanted track. If they were balanced before, Marshal is clearly superior now.

Also what happens when you draw a card to leave jail. Do you:
1) Reveal it and discard it?
2) Reveal it and keep it? (And now everyone knows you drew an Ace?)
3) Not reveal it and everyone takes it on faith that you drew what you claimed?

None of those sound fantastic to me
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Remus Rhymus
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I think that this situation absolutely requires
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You gotta love it when someone who hasn't played the game yet, posts a bunch of "fixes". I could be wrong, but the game seems to have been and continues to be play-tested pretty extensively - that's based on interviews I've seen with Travis and other's from Kolossal. Nothing wrong with coming up with fun variants and house-rules when necessary. But to claim this is a kids game in the same vein as Candy Land without playing it once seems a bit off. Different games set out to do different things. WL, to me, seems to be a fun Wild West sandbox game with high player interaction and peppered with historic characters. It seems like it has some fun and interesting choices throughout. It's not meant to be a simulation of the harsh realities of the time period. If it's too Candy Land for you, then move on.
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Phil
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The problem I have with the Jail variant is that if you get put in jail on turn 1, you could sit there for 3-4 turns, not drawing your needed card and then die. So you're out on by turn 5 watching the rest of the players have fun.

The Pals idea is ripe for an expansion though. Hiring someone to be on your posse that provides some benefit is something I have to think they looked at during development but probably trimmed due to complexity.
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Mark Kaiser
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Just some gameplay suggestions, nothing more. I'm sure the good folk here will tweak stuff in-house anyway, creative bunch. My response wasn't intended sarcastically, though it probably came off that way. $80 for a light hearted cowboy game just seems a little steep to me, but that's just my opinion. I wouldn't expect the devs to hold the presses on my two cents, but maybe some thoughts put down by others, would encourage on the fencers to purchase. I have to back out anyways, some family emergencies just put me down financially, I sure would have liked to pledge on this though, there are too few Western anything nowadays. I salute the people behind this endeavor. Thank you all for the comments and replies, and most of all have fun! -Respectfully, Mark K.
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John Van Wagoner
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Ranger3d75 wrote:
Just some gameplay suggestions, nothing more. I'm sure the good folk here will tweak stuff in-house anyway, creative bunch. My response wasn't intended sarcastically, though it probably came off that way. $80 for a light hearted cowboy game just seems a little steep to me, but that's just my opinion. I wouldn't expect the devs to hold the presses on my two cents, but maybe some thoughts put down by others, would encourage on the fencers to purchase. I have to back out anyways, some family emergencies just put me down financially, I sure would have liked to pledge on this though, there are too few Western anything nowadays. I salute the people behind this endeavor. Thank you all for the comments and replies, and most of all have fun! -Respectfully, Mark K.
i for one think you had some very good ideas!! i can't wait for the game, and once it's here i'll re-visit some of your suggestions (which i've saved)...thanks for the input...
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Duke Drizzt
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I really like the idea of "pals". Ppl like Koala that shutdown any idea immediately without thinking it through will always rain on your parade. His smug comment of "good bye balance" is proof of that.
Obviously things would get balanced when trying to implement something like that. This is how games are created...with ideas. You need the dough first before you make bread.

I mean, how cool would it be to have a posse rolling around?! Maybe you could only give the marshal a Max of 1 pal and a wanted 2 or 3 or whatever. There's ways to make it work before definitively saying it won't.

And as far as jail goes, you could even do it like Monopoly where u have to roll doubles (here it's trying to draw a face card though) to get out otherwise u can post bail or get hung in some fashion. You can make it as a press your luck type of deal.

I like the ideas thematically and think they are a good foundation to work with in creating some sort of expansion or something.
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Clinton Rice
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DukeDrizzt wrote:
Ppl like Koala that shutdown any idea immediately without thinking it through will always rain on your parade. His smug comment of "good bye balance" is proof of that.


Actually, I did think it through. In my post, I gave no less than four reasons for my belief that it was imbalanced.
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Phil
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I spent over half a game of Tales of the Arabian Nights locked in jail because I couldn't do whatever it was I needed to to get out (roll or draw a card, or whatever it was). Turn comes around, did I roll the right number, no, oh well, I'll try again next turn.

It wasn't a fun game.
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