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Subject: Thanks for helping name our next wargame, and congrats to John Murphy! rss

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Byron Collins
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After a few threads and a poll, the most popular choice for our next Wargame, a fast playing tactical card game, and my personal favorite as well, is Frontline General: Spearpoint. Edit: I'm adding "1943" at the end to clear up any confusion on the era.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/428067 (Poll Thread)

Frontline General: Spearpoint 1943 really sums up what the game is all about- frontline combat- and the Tip of the Spear, or Spearpoint, of the battle. It's a unique name that, to me anyway, is catchy and easy to remember.

Thanks to John Murphy (IrishBouzouki) for the suggested name- he's getting the first preorder for free. John, GM me your shipping info, please.

As I go forward with development, look for more info on this game here, on the www.frontlinegeneral.com site, and even at WBC next week. I'll be there running demos of a prototype using draft rules, along with demoing my other games. Mark Mahaffey is on board to develop the box art for the game- as he's done with our other two titles- so keep an eye out for that as well.

Thanks for everyone's participation in this group naming effort! Your GREAT suggestions made it quite difficult to make a final choice. The choice has been made, and the game name is now set.

Great work, everyone. Thanks.

Edit: To clear up any confusion over the era of the game, I've added "1943" at the end of the title.
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Mr. B @ Rockin' B
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Congrats to you and John!!!
 
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cln777 wrote:

Congrats to you and John!!!


Ditto.


 
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Geoff Burkman
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I hope you do well with it.
 
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Byron Collins
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Thanks, Geoff and all. I hope so as well. WBC this coming week should be a good indicator- I'll be there running some demos with a few prototypes and some draft rules. Really looking forward to it.
 
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the result of caprice
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Excellent choice. Congrats John!

I have to give one final comment though. If there is an option, I prefer
Frontline General: Tip of the Spear over Frontline General: Spearpoint. Maybe because I've heard Tip of the Spear before and it is more familiar to me.

Nonetheless, either way it will be a unique and very appropriate name. Good luck on the launch!
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alan beaumont
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Murphy's Law?
frontlinegeneral wrote:
Frontline General: Spearpoint really sums up what the game is all about- frontline combat- and the Tip of the Spear, or Spearpoint, of the battle. It's a unique name that, to me anyway, is catchy and easy to remember.
And which to me and possibly many others, suggests a pre-gunpowder theme, which surely wasn't the intention?
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Byron Collins
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misteralan wrote:
frontlinegeneral wrote:
Frontline General: Spearpoint really sums up what the game is all about- frontline combat- and the Tip of the Spear, or Spearpoint, of the battle. It's a unique name that, to me anyway, is catchy and easy to remember.
And which to me and possibly many others, suggests a pre-gunpowder theme, which surely wasn't the intention?


Alan, thanks for your comment. I've thought about that, and it's certainly a good point. I think this is where the box cover and game description comes into play along with association with our WWII games we've already made... One other addition I'll probably make to dispell any thoughts of pre-gunpowder era is a small subtitle on the box such as "Fast-Playing WWII Squad Level Card Game" or something to that effect.

Even without a subtitle, this game would not be alone in not identifying the period right in the title. I can think of a bunch of wargame titles that could be from any period- such as Asia Engulfed.
 
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Byron Collins
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bluesea wrote:
I have to give one final comment though. If there is an option, I prefer Frontline General: Tip of the Spear over Frontline General: Spearpoint. Maybe because I've heard Tip of the Spear before and it is more familiar to me.


I do like Tip of the Spear, but it's already being used by a PC title and I don't want to get into naming battles or trademark issues--

http://www.crypticcomet.com/games/AE/spear.html

It didn't pass the 'google test'
 
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""Frontline General: Murphy's Law""

Explains the CRT and Dice...
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Byron Collins
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Wilhammer wrote:
""Frontline General: Murphy's Law""

Explains the CRT and Dice...


Nice!
 
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Byron Collins
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IrishBouzouki wrote:
misteralan wrote:
which surely wasn't the intention?

Certainly not.

'Spearpoint' is the name of the periodical published by these guys:
http://www.nasamw.org
The North American Society of Ancient and Medieval Wargamers
(essentially they are the ones who organize the historical miniatures tournaments run at the local and national levels in the US and Canada in some of the more popular rule sets for that kind of thing).

I am a past "on and off again" member, spanning a couple decades, of NASAMW.

I am sure that made my brain pre-conditioned to grab at the term as a way to evoke the idea of "Tip of the Spear" and "Spearhead" which would both have already-stated trademark issues within a WW2 game context.

EDIT - and I would not see the periodical name, which has never been associated with a particular game as far as I know, a trademark issue any more than "Arrowhead" would be due to the stadium in Kansas City. But there it is anyway.

EDIT TWO - "Frontline General: Murphy's Law", now that would make a good tactical game name for any era, but might cause problems in game production management! Better to stay specific with "Frontline General: Murphy's Laws of Combat". If Spearpoint is a problem, perhaps Speartip? Same idea.


I saw that periodical when I was Google-testing the suggestion. If anything, it may generate more hits for them. I also was avoiding Spearhead because of the association with 3rd armored div- I don't want to confuse anyone into thinking the game covers a division's drive or anything- so the name had to avoid mottos and nicknames of divisions / units- and be generic enough to not be associated with a particular battle. It was a tough call (hence why I asked for help)!

If I had named the game on my own, it would have probably been called FG: Engagements. So I'm glad I asked for suggestions- the call for help generated a great response and many good suggestions- and (I think) a better name in the end.
 
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Oh my God They Banned Kenny
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misteralan wrote:
frontlinegeneral wrote:
Frontline General: Spearpoint really sums up what the game is all about- frontline combat- and the Tip of the Spear, or Spearpoint, of the battle. It's a unique name that, to me anyway, is catchy and easy to remember.
And which to me and possibly many others, suggests a pre-gunpowder theme, which surely wasn't the intention?


That would be my take as well. If I knew nothing of the game a priori, the name Frontline General: Spearpoint would make me think of Macedonians vs. Persians, led by Alexander the Great, rather than WWII armoured combat.

Some other comments have raised some interesting questions regarding copyrights and names. Avalon Hill copyrighted 'Stalingrad' (a bit of a misnomer) as the name of their WWII eastern front wargame, back in 1963 IIRC. Yet that hasn't stopped many others from naming games incorporating the name 'Stalingrad'. Although there is a 'game' named simply Spearhead, that apparently didn't prevent another company from coming out with "Great War Spearhead" and "Modern Spearhead". So I am curious, from a 'copyright' perspective would naming a game Frontline General: Spearhead run into 'issues' due to the existing game named simply Spearhead?
 
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Byron Collins
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How about adding a year to the title? This was suggested for another title early on in one of the original posts-- i.e. add a year to any title to make it more distinctive....

I'm thinking Frontline General: Spearpoint 1943

No question of the era.

Edit: Original Post Edited to reflect Frontline General: Spearpoint 1943.
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Byron Collins
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deadkenny wrote:
So I am curious, from a 'copyright' perspective would naming a game Frontline General: Spearhead run into 'issues' due to the existing game named simply Spearhead?


Well first, I'm no expert on copyright or trademark law and I'm not a lawyer.

I do know that terms that are fairly generic cannot be trademarked... for example, "wheat" or "bread"... but "Nature's Own Honey Wheat Bread" may be trademarked. This is designated with the "TM" symbol if it's unregistered or "Circle R" if it's registered. It's common for companies to trademark logos and titles so they're not stolen- and to let other companies know that they're protecting that logo or title and using it as their 'trademark'- their brand.

The general idea is to avoid conflicts wherever possible. For example, in naming "Frontline General", I made sure there were no existing games with that title. It's just easier than using an existing popular name- and safer from a business perspective.

It's probably safe to use Spearhead, and if you change something in that title, such as adding "Frontline General:" before Spearhead, it's considered a completely different title from a trademark perspective (IIRC).

Still, I'd personally rather have a unique name for each of my games and not risk any infringement- so the safest bet is to go with something completely unique.
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Byron Collins
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Update: Frontline General: Spearpoint 1943 is now the working title- the OP has been edited to suit.

Now since adding a year to the end of any title was originally suggested by the result of caprice (bluesea), I'm setting him up with a free preorder copy as well. I've GM'ed him for his shipping info.

Thanks, bluesea, I think adding a date to the end helps clear up any question of the era of the game.
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