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Subject: PnP Files Updated at Wargame Vault rss

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Pete Goch
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Just got a notice that the PnP files have been updated for An Infamous Traffic. Anyone have a list of updates or changes? I've already put together my PnP so I'd rather leave it be unless there's been some sort of significant alteration. I didn't see a summary on the page at Wargame Vault.

Is it just an updated rulebook?
 
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Christopher Wood
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Whence came this mysterious "notice," eh?

Here afaik is the best and most current well of clues about the state of the AIT rulebook: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1680499/faq-summary-rules-c...

Sad to say, from this end user's perspective anyway, the rulebook has been rather fluxed for quite some time. I really hope things soon get solidified properly.
 
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Pete Goch
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I got an email from Wargame Vault. They notify anyone who bought the files from them when they are updated.

I've already downloaded and printed the latest (to my knowledge) version of the rules. Seems fine to me.
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Tom Russell
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We updated the rulebook months ago for both the print and PNP editions. There have been some minor clarifications since then, but I'd hardly call the rulebook "fluxed". YMMV, of course.

The most recent update to the files was just us adding the Prize Cards that we rolled out with the physical edition back in February.
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Christopher Wood
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By fluxed, I mean that changes appear to be occurring to the official rules, which we seem afaict not to have access to. The most recent online rulebook version I see is dated six months ago, early Oct'17. Is there actually a current version maintained somewhere else? I surely would be interested in keeping up with it, please!

edit/add: I bought the boxed Blue Panther edition. I have no Wargame Vault account.

edit/add: blush I intended no pun between the word "flux," meaning in a state of change, and an entirely different word that unfortunately sounds similar.
 
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Tom Russell
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The October 2017 book is the updated rulebook. No additions or changes have been made to it at this time.
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Christopher Wood
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I believe there have been a few errata posted in the rulebook thread since October, and some important clarifications in other forum threads. FWIW, I am a fan of the living rules system used by, e.g., Pax Renaissance, which allows guests to post "live" corrections, which Mr. Eklund then approves or declines on a very timely basis, so that we continually have as current and useful a rulebook as can be had. It also allows comments and questions, which are often illuminating. The fancy formatting may come every few months as a new PDF, but the up-to-the-minute text is really extremely useful IMHO. It has its flaws as does anything, but it seems to me the best way to maintain a rules set. Have Hollandspiele ever considered something like this? AIT would seem to be a good trial candidate.
 
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Tom Russell
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That's something worth considering, but generally we attempt to release games without the need for constantly-updated "living rules". Being human we have come up short from time to time, but I think on the whole our record is pretty good about this sort of thing - I can only think of three occasions where a game needed a real post-release tune-up, and out of twenty-eight or so games that's not too bad. We're also working closely with some proofreaders and editors - such as the invaluable Travis Hill - so I don't see us adopting the Eklund method anytime soon. But like I said it's something for us to think about and mull over, so thank you for suggesting it - who knows?
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Christopher Wood
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Well, Travis is on the hook now! wow

I'm not sure that "constantly-updated" is a requirement or justification for a living-rules arrangement. The undeniable fact of wargames rules especially, and 99% of boardgame rules in general, is that clarifications and corrections always arise, in whatever quantity. When a new player approaches a game—and I've been in this situation many times—there's almost nothing worse than digging through FAQs, forums, errata sheets, etc., trying to cobble together what is or should be essentially one single document. I recently gave up on a game (a rare occurrence!) because I simply failed to cobble from the bloody mess of editions and updates and who-knows-what-all. All the rules in a single place, that seems to be the only reasonable way to handle things. If there's a better way, I'm not aware of it. It's not perfect—I can point to flaws—but it's the best, afaict.

The thing is, there's at least three versions of the AIT rulebook online right now, and none are really current, except purportedly the one for sale through Wargame Vault (for how long?), which I can't see as it's behind a paywall that I haven't paid through. All told, it's very much less appealing than a live document.

Please keep the consideration fresh in your plans, at least for games like AIT with fair amounts of ... you know ... "flux."
 
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Tom Russell
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The rulebook on Wargame Vault is the same one that's available to download for free here on BGG. There is no "paywall". If you've downloaded the newest rulebook from BGG, you have the updated, current rulebook.

There may be some minor clarifications that Cole may or may not work into the rules at a latter date as his schedule allows, but there is no super-secret hidden rulebook that we're keeping from the public. :-)
 
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Christopher Wood
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Sorry, I thought it had just been updated on Wargame Vault?

So sorry to have misunderstood!
 
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Tom Russell
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christopherwood wrote:

Sorry, I thought it had just been updated on Wargame Vault?

So sorry to have misunderstood!


No worries. I think you simply overlooked this in the above:

me wrote:
The most recent update to the files was just us adding the Prize Cards that we rolled out with the physical edition back in February.


Everything else - board, counters, and, yes, rules - are precisely the same.

But please, no need to apologize - misunderstandings happen. And you've given me a lot to think about, and I appreciate that.
 
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Christopher Wood
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I saw the note about the Prize Cards, and I just let it go as a change that I can guess the content of (but can't see). ... This change is not in the BGG-posted rulebook from October, right? or am I missing another BGG version? I hope you can understand how confusing this arrangement is for some of us, or at least for one of us.

The thing is, for my part anyway, "minor clarifications" are actually pretty important, and can make or break a player's comprehension of the game. Are these the post-October errata/etc. from here on BGG? You're saying they haven't been incorporated officially?

Again, an online Living Rules solves these issues, fwiw.
 
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Christopher Wood
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Lest I sound utterly one-sided ...

One of the flaws, perhaps the greatest, of online Living Rules, is its facility or even encouragement for a designer to redesign a game. I and those I know really frown on redesign. We hold to the utopian notion that a designer ought to finalize his game, through the known hard work of endless playtesting, until the design reaches its peak form. At that point, the matter of the written rules expressing that design clearly is the only thing that the players will need to worry about, the only thing standing between, or bridging the gap between, players and game. Edge cases arise, undiscovered combinations of mechanisms come to light ... it just happens. The more complex a design, the more complexities will plague the rules writer. It's a highly technical craft to get these systems down on paper, in words & diagrams, in forms that players can understand. But we hold to the idea, and trust in the designer to such an extent, that we assume and believe that the design itself is done. It shouldn't change. It is what is is, and should be what it is. We're not calling for Living Design. We're calling for a set of rules that exist in such a state that they can refine when unexpected edge cases arise, missed ambiguities and vagaries are questioned, or even typos are found. Living Rules gives us that freedom (just as Printed Rules in the box -don't- give us that freedom [but we're kinda stuck with that, I think]). But we all know that wherever freedom is, people will abuse it. We've seen games change, and sometimes change back(!), in Living Rules. It's a severe disruption to our utopian ideals. But of course, we cannot expect anything else. We just do the best we can.
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Tom Russell
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christopherwood wrote:

I saw the note about the Prize Cards, and I just let it go as a change that I can guess the content of (but can't see). ... This change is not in the BGG-posted rulebook from October, right?


There is no change to the rulebook on Wargame Vault or elsewhere. The October 2017 rulebook on BGG is the current rulebook - the same exact rulebook that's on Wargame Vault, and the same exact rulebook that's in the boxes of copies of the game that are going out now. The rulebook has not changed. The only change to the PNP files was the addition of the PDF file with the prize cards.
 
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Christopher Wood
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Ahhhh, OK thanks! Sorry again to have misunderstood.
 
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