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Subject: Michael Barnes' Review and Waiting another week rss

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Ian McCarthy
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If you scroll to the links at the bottom of the game page, you will find the link to the review on Game Shark.

I think it's pretty hilarious that MB doesn't like Battlelore as a game or Westeros as a setting and still really enjoys the gameplay of Battles of Westeros.

Instead of giving a glowing review, however, he rails on the marketing and production issues, unfavorably comparing the minis in this game vs. the plastic figs in Descent and Starcraft.

To me, he seems to be towing the Battlelore fanboy line, even he professes to not be a fan of that game. I just can't understand giving a game such a mixed review based upon the possibility of FFG not supporting it in the future.

Are there any games that FFG has dropped the ball on? Maybe Battlelore? But there it seems like they bought the license of a pretty much DOA product, given the production issues. And, it's impossible to say how much profit they've actually made on the product. And, if they're not making a profit, who's to fault them for putting the game on the backburner?

Anyway, my two cents. Here's the link to the pretty interesting discussion about the review on F:AT.

http://fortressat.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=arti...:battles-of-westeros-in-review&catid=51:reviews&Itemid=100080

Oh, and I called CardHaus to find out about whether they were getting the game sooner rather than later. The guy on the phone didn't know anything and just repeated the "Early July" line that's on their website pre-order page.

So, I won't get my hopes up that it will come sooner than that. Too bad, because I really wanted to bring it to my game night next Wednesday.
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Esdevium has it on their site as to be released mid week coming week... Esdevium is an European game wholesale & distributor based in the UK. When they create their new releases list on friday for the coming week (web)shops like GamesLore have them in stock as well...
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Ian McCarthy
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I feel the same way, Anthony, and I'm also a fan of both Battlelore and the Westeros setting. I'm pretty sure that I'll at least pick up the first expansion.

I'm glad that the first expansion was announced and I'm not surprised that it contains two of the most interesting characters from the books, Tyrion Lannister, the Imp, and Sandor Clegane, the Hound.

For Stark, I can't imagine who the new leaders for the inevitable expansion will be. Jon Snow is the next most interesting character, but he will likely be in the very probable Night's Watch expansion. So, maybe Blackfish?

I can't see how the designer could have applied more Westeros theme to the game. The leaders are the heart of the game and they seem to have thematic abilities and potential. The battles are attempts to recreate confrontations from the book, most of which weren't described in detail that would indicate how units on a hex grid should be set up. So, just from seeing the first five scenario layouts, I think they have done a fine job integrating the theme into the game.
 
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Mike
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I really think "Old Nan" should be one of the Stark's next leaders. Or maybe even Hodor with Bran riding him like a character from Mad Max Thunderdome.
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Jim Patterson
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KenToad wrote:
To me, he seems to be towing the Battlelore fanboy line, even he professes to not be a fan of that game.


I can pretty much swear that he's no fan of BattleLore.

Michael's rationale is pretty clear to me, though it's probably clearer if one followed the discussion around the announcement. He doesn't like the minis (which is, admittedly, a subjective appraisal), doesn't really see how branding this a "BattleLore game" does either game any good, and doesn't really understand how a series of books in which character development is stressed can really support a fairly generic warband game system.
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Ian McCarthy
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Yeah, I see his concerns as you've summarized very well and I think they're valid, but I disagree with his leap of logic that it means that FFG isn't confident about their product or that they might just abandon it.

My guesses for the probable Stark expansion are Blackfish, Roose Bolton and Roderick Cassel. I can't think of anyone else they could put in there. But I'd probably pass on that expansion, if it comes out with those leaders.
 
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I really hope they skip any stark expansion and enter a third house. Greyjoy, Baratheon. And I would more than love a deluxe expansion with a new map/terrains with the wall and the nightwatch on it.

Or a detailed map of lannisport and blackwater river.

I really, really hope they don't just milk the stark/lannister houses, Westeros has so much more.
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Ian McCarthy
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EuroHobbes wrote:
I really hope they skip any stark expansion and enter a third house. Greyjoy, Baratheon. And I would more than love a deluxe expansion with a new map/terrains with the wall and the nightwatch on it.

Or a detailed map of lannisport and blackwater river.

I really, really hope they don't just milk the stark/lannister houses, Westeros has so much more.


I agree with this 100%. But I feel like they will probably do the Stark expansion because that would enable the epic game with the extra units from both Stark and Lannister expansions. If they would include a double-sided board with a Riverrun map on one side and a matching vertical board on the other with both siege scenarios and epic scenarios, I would probably buy that.
 
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KenToad wrote:

My guesses for the probable Stark expansion are Blackfish, Roose Bolton and Roderick Cassel. I can't think of anyone else they could put in there. But I'd probably pass on that expansion, if it comes out with those leaders.


Yeah, blackfish is kind of fun, but otherwise those are pretty lame. They could have some allies like edmure tully or theon greyjoy (though i could see them waiting on the greyjoy's for the inevitable 'clash of kings' expansion that will probably feature greyjoys). The tully's aren't that strong a house so I think it'd make sense to include them.
 
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I can't give any details, but to address the issue of non-support on Battles of Westeros--I'm currently playtesting the 3rd expansion and working on mechanics for more after that. There's going to be plenty of support unless the game completely tanks on sales. And it doesn't look like that is going to happen.

I believe the first expansion has been announced, right?
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Grimstax wrote:
I can't give any details, but to address the issue of non-support on Battles of Westeros--I'm currently playtesting the 3rd expansion and working on mechanics for more after that.


Cough if the 2nd expansion is a 'stark allies reinforcements' with roose bolton, edmure tully and the blackfish.
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Ian McCarthy
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Grimstax wrote:
I can't give any details, but to address the issue of non-support on Battles of Westeros--I'm currently playtesting the 3rd expansion and working on mechanics for more after that. There's going to be plenty of support unless the game completely tanks on sales. And it doesn't look like that is going to happen.

I believe the first expansion has been announced, right?


No details? Fudgemonkeys!

Damn FFG and their weasel-y ways.

Okay, Okay, it's good to hear. Sounds like we've got the inevitable Stark expansion as expansion number 2, probably doesn't require much playtesting because it's just a few new leaders and a couple of new units. Too bad.

Yeah, the first expansion has been announced. Where have you been? ninja
 
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Ian McCarthy
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haqattaqq wrote:
Grimstax wrote:
I can't give any details, but to address the issue of non-support on Battles of Westeros--I'm currently playtesting the 3rd expansion and working on mechanics for more after that.


Cough if the 2nd expansion is a 'stark allies reinforcements' with roose bolton, edmure tully and the blackfish.


Don't know about coughing, but I think I hear some howling in the distance, somewhere in the midwest methinks.
 
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Frank Branham
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I got to play a game with Barnes a couple weeks back.

A: The game is good.
B: He is kind of correct about the minis. The bases don't stay on the figures, and you will HAVE to spend a couple of hours with some glue before you can play.
C: The sculpts aren't as bad as he spells them out. He's remembering the $80 tombstone boxes from FFG. I think that the figures compare well to Battlelore, but with realistic proportions and better sculpting. If the bases didn't suck.



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Ian McCarthy
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fbranham wrote:
I got to play a game with Barnes a couple weeks back.

A: The game is good.
B: He is kind of correct about the minis. The bases don't stay on the figures, and you will HAVE to spend a couple of hours with some glue before you can play.
C: The sculpts aren't as bad as he spells them out. He's remembering the $80 tombstone boxes from FFG. I think that the figures compare well to Battlelore, but with realistic proportions and better sculpting. If the bases didn't suck.





Well, I don't mind gluing the bases myself. It can't be worse than the stickering of Ancients. That takes awhile.

Yeah, I'm torn about the pictures I have seen of the minis. The stark bowmen are obviously too thin, but the Lannister cavalry and the leaders look pretty good. I'm neutral about the other units and I'm not bothered by the flags, either. That part of the design definitely seems more practical than aesthetic.
 
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As Mike's editor at Gshark, I want to thank everyone for not turning this into a Barnes flamefest rather than a discussion about the game/review. (That's what usually happens.) I truly do appreciate that.

That said, Mike's review of BoW has made me pull the trigger on buying it. I could not care less about the lore (I didn't like the first book) and while I consider BattleLore merely OK I love C&C:A and this sounds like, based on what Mike said in the article, an advancement of that design.

So I'm in, expansions be damned.


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Ian McCarthy
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Damn, I knew we needed more flames.

This thread doesn't have enough heat. Otherwise, I'm sure it would have more thumbs and a shit ton of Internet naysayers lining up to post.
 
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