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Subject: PREVIEW: Brotherhood Without Banners Expansion rss

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David Knepper
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Posted to the Fantasy Flight Games website:

http://new.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_news.asp?eidn=2499

Quote:
Rising Again and Again
Announcing Brotherhood Without Banners, an ally expansion for Battles of Westeros

Fantasy Flight Games is pleased to announce the upcoming release of Brotherhood Without Banners, an ally force expansion for Battles of Westeros! Reports of attacks on the riverlands by a marauding army have reached King’s Landing. For the sake of honor, a group of soldiers and nobles have been tasked with bringing these outlaws in to face the king’s justice...until the ever-changing politics of King’s Landing cause them to be named outlaws instead.
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DK Kemler
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I really just can't understand FFG's choice of expansion material... 5 expansions in and we still don't have another major house?
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Kelly Fischer
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Agreed. As much as I like this game, without a major house release, I've certainly switched to the wait and see what happens next before I spend any more of my money on this.
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Cracky McCracken
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thanks for the heads up!
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Kelly Fischer
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Am I mistaken or is FFG. They attribute the flaming sword to Lord Beric, not Thoros of Myr.

From FFG:

"Beric’s sigil is a forked lightning bolt, and his weapon a flaming sword. Swift in battle, he is a leader who will stand against any enemy. Anguy is an archer with a reputation across Westeros for devastating accuracy and can avoid capture by using his surroundings to his advantage. The red priest of R’hllor, Thoros of Myr, is a formidable warrior but his greatest strength is in his ability to assist his fallen Brotherhood members..."

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Hugh G. Rection
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degamer wrote:
I really just can't understand FFG's choice of expansion material... 5 expansions in and we still don't have another major house?


Maybe they're continuing the BattleLore strategy of just rehashing the same 3 creatures (humans, goblins, dwarves) over and over again. Can't wait for Tyrion mounted on a cow! laugh
 
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Michael Wheal
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@Kelly

FFG got that wrong.

 
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Frank Franco
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I don't mind these exotic expansions. I can't say I'm all that hard up for a major house - I mean really how is Baratheon going to differ all that much from the Lannisters?

In hindsite I think the game probably should have come with generic army A and generic army B, to which you add the 'special' units and leaders of that house too. Because under this system If another house comes out I'm going to get swordsmen, archers and cav which are exactly like the ones I already have for the other house. Do I really care about swordsmen with a different pose all that much?

Anyway, at least it seems that the game is indeed selling.
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Ian McCarthy
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MWAlbion wrote:
@Kelly

FFG got that wrong.



I need to double-check, but I don't think so. I'm pretty sure that that Thoros did it for show, but Beric used magic to do it for real during the duel in the cave.

In any case, yeah, I'm disappointed, frankly. I expected either nothing or another big box by now. The Brothers without Banners aren't really strong elements of the stories, either, IMO. Freys or Boltons or Greyjoys would be a lot more interesting.

Even worse is that I just can't see the value of each of these expansions. They come in what amounts to basically a large tuckbox, about 80% air. I just can't imagine how I'm supposed to store these games in any organized fashion without just having to throw out the tuckbox or having a huge amount of wasted space.

Even more disturbing is that I wasn't impressed with the quality of the sculpts of the last two ally expansions.

To top that off, this makes me really curious as to how well these expansions are selling. The margin must be really high, judging by the number of components.
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Frank Franco
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KenToad wrote:

Even worse is that I just can't see the value of each of these expansions. They come in what amounts to basically a large tuckbox, about 80% air. I just can't imagine how I'm supposed to store these games in any organized fashion without just having to throw out the tuckbox or having a huge amount of wasted space.


They all fit in the original box (so far).
 
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Ian McCarthy
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Mr Skeletor wrote:
KenToad wrote:

Even worse is that I just can't see the value of each of these expansions. They come in what amounts to basically a large tuckbox, about 80% air. I just can't imagine how I'm supposed to store these games in any organized fashion without just having to throw out the tuckbox or having a huge amount of wasted space.


They all fit in the original box (so far).


You just use baggies?
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Mike
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We might still see something big and surprising at GenCon. Must...have...faith... yes, with a lower case f.
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Frank Franco
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KenToad wrote:

You just use baggies?


Of course! These aren't Franklin Mint China collectables, they are plastic 20 cent toys.
1 sandwitch baggie for all lanister units (base & expansion).
1 sandwitch baggie for all stark units (base and expansion).
Snack baggie each for the other 2 expansions.
Each side gets a baggie for their tokens and stuff.
A baggie for terrain tiles.
A baggie for generic (non side) tokens.
Elastic bands for cards. Done.

Everything has survived so far.

Even games where I have painted minis (like Descent and Doom) I normally just dump them into a box. This stuff is durable, I don't get why people are so careful with them.

If something does get damaged, well for $100 I can get a new copy. On the other hand getting an extention to my house because I have no where to stick the dozen boxes every game I own takes up because I cotton wrap every idividual minature in it's own foamcore tomb is going to cost me tens of thousands. Space is more expansive than games.
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fightcitymayor
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KeyserSoze wrote:
Am I mistaken or is FFG. They attribute the flaming sword to Lord Beric, not Thoros of Myr.

From FFG:

"Beric’s sigil is a forked lightning bolt, and his weapon a flaming sword.
Well, Lord Beric does use it in his mano-a-mano duel with The Hound. But I agree, technically Thoros Of Myr is the one who is more famous for wielding it in the books.
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Ian McCarthy
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Mr Skeletor wrote:
KenToad wrote:

You just use baggies?


Of course! These aren't Franklin Mint China collectables, they are plastic 20 cent toys.
1 sandwitch baggie for all lanister units (base & expansion).
1 sandwitch baggie for all stark units (base and expansion).
Snack baggie each for the other 2 expansions.
Each side gets a baggie for their tokens and stuff.
A baggie for terrain tiles.
A baggie for generic (non side) tokens.
Elastic bands for cards. Done.

Everything has survived so far.

Even games where I have painted minis (like Descent and Doom) I normally just dump them into a box. This stuff is durable, I don't get why people are so careful with them.

If something does get damaged, well for $100 I can get a new copy. On the other hand getting an extention to my house because I have no where to stick the dozen boxes every game I own takes up because I cotton wrap every idividual minature in it's own foamcore tomb is going to cost me tens of thousands. Space is more expansive than games.


With a game like this, I prefer to have an organized storage solution. It's already a pain in the ass to set up. I prefer to have the units separated.

Although I see what you're saying. I threw away four unnecessary Dungeon Twister expansion boxes because all the contents fit snugly in the Prison box.

And it's not about money, it's about quality of life, i.e. not letting your games make your house an unlivable mess.

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Ian McCarthy
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fightcitymayor wrote:
KeyserSoze wrote:
Am I mistaken or is FFG. They attribute the flaming sword to Lord Beric, not Thoros of Myr.

From FFG:

"Beric’s sigil is a forked lightning bolt, and his weapon a flaming sword.
Well, Lord Beric does use it in his mano-a-mano duel with The Hound. But I agree, technically Thoros Of Myr is the one who is more famous for wielding it in the books.


As I remember, Thoros was noted specifically as using it for dramatic effect, whereas Beric had some magical power that actually changed the way the sword worked.

Or something like that.

I'm pretty sure that FFG didn't get this rather large detail wrong.

Can't wait to see the finalized Errata, by the way.
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Frank Franco
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heh, looks very nice. Doesn't that increase teardown time though?
I did something similar with arkham which became unwieldly. For me though Westeros isn't a log set up game - grab the couple of bags that apply to your faction, spill em out and pretty much thats it. Most of my dungeon crawls take way longer.

I'll go fishing tackle boxes for things where you are constantly grabbing things out of the box, like dungeon crawls where you are setting up a room every 15 mins. If the setup is frontloaded like a DOM game though I find faction baggies to be by far the quickest.
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Selon Thart
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Except for the background given by the books, I don't see any big appeal in another major faction. A major house would need basic troops as well in order to maintain balance and story background, and that'd be 40+ new miniatures of basically the same troops we have right now (Infantry, Archer, Cavalry). I could see Greyjoy getting away with this, seeing their norse-influenced style, but for the other major houses, anything but basic troops similar to Lannister would be weird.
That'd leave us with one or two special troops and 3-5 new commanders, not much more than we're getting with the ally expansions.

Though I wish FFG handled the faction issue a bit more modular, say the basic leadership cards (and maybe the three basic units) belong to no faction, and the players may choose 1-2 (maybe even 3 in some scenarios) factions to play - Those factions could include both major houses and minor allies. (i.e. the North could be split up into the Starks and into the "Northern Allies" (Basically what came with WotN)).

I think FFG are holding back a possible Frey/Bolton expansion in order to
Spoiler (click to reveal)
not spoil any new customers coming from the TV series, as I can't imagine these two factions put into play without any kind of treason (be it a gameplay-mechanic or a scenario.)


Anyways, I'm kind of interested in this expansion, but I'll have to see how those new mechanics will work out. I'm still working on combining the first two expansions and adjusting some balance issues for myself (red cavalry, I'm looking at you)

I like the added depth to picking the factions in skirmish matchups, as with three allies the second player may counter-pick the player with momentum.

Also, it seems they're slightly stocking up on content in those expansions. Four scenarios and two skirmish matchups? Don't overwhelm me, FFG
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Ian McCarthy
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Four Scenarios in this expansion? I missed that.

I like your post, Selon. I think it's true that another core set with similar, basic materials and components similar to the current core set would be the wrong way to go.

But we have a diverse world in Westeros. Much of the land is in the North. So, yeah, a winter board. Also, I'd love to see a board and rules for coastal fighting. Memoir 44 is the clear model here. There are a ton of things that could be done to expand the system in radical directions that the theme can support.

Also, supposedly, a core set would have different art on the core order cards, allow you to play a completely rethemed game and most likely give you ten more scenarios for your bucks, rather than just three or four.

I'm just not that into paying top dollar for tiny variants on materials I already have, especially if the sculpt quality has gone down. And it irks me that there is only one scenario, web published, that combines any of the expansions.

I'll wait on this expansion, too, until I better understand how they're handling the "without Banners" aspect of it.
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randall fischer

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I like all of the expansions that they have come out with so far. I am also in the "toss it in baggies" group. That works well enough for me, and I have no issues really with transporting the game, or with setup and takedown times.

I think these mini expansions are great. They add enough to keep the game fresh and dont really cost an arm and a leg. I think we really didnt need a Lannister/Stark expansion straight away...I mean I'd have rather had the Hill Clans and the Tully's first, but I still bought em right as they came out. Having Berric and Team is another cool expansion, and I think the chance to champion the cause of the little man and harrass both armies is a cool addition, and it fits right in with the timeline.

Certain House expansions just wouldnt make sense at all due to their declared neutrality during portions of the novels. In the spoiler below, I talk about what I want to happen, and where I think it'd be cool for them to take the game. The spoiler assumes youve read at least into book 4.

Spoiler (click to reveal)
The Tyrells and Greyjoys should be in the next big box. It could add naval combat rules and siege rules so we could play Stannis's attack on King's landing, the Greyjoy assaults on the Stark castles, and Greyjoy coastal raids into Tyrell territory. It'd just be good sense to include the two in one large box and round out the war of the five kings with all involved.

Now, in the future, I'd like to see Dany and her unsullied and sellswords vs. the slave cities with their crazy armies. And, the watch, giants, mammoths, and northmen would just be awesome to play...as you could have conflicts that occurred during the war of five kings or after or whats to come.

However....I think we'll see the Baratheon brothers before any of dreams become reality. Likely before even a Tyrell/Greyjoy addition.
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Barry Kendall
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I'm disappointed not to see Brienne, as she spent so much time functioning as an "indie."
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Frank Franco
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Yeah, if i have 1 complaint about the expansions is not enough scenarios and that they don't cross polonate (no scenarios with hill tribes vs the shield maidens.)
Not a fan of winter boards and stuff unless they alter gameplay.I never play M44 because It has too many tiles in it these days, the majority of which do the same thing. So unless there are snow rules or something, I can pretend the green grass is the north.
 
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Simon Webster
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All these posts in and no-ne has mentioned the fact that these mini's have no banners!

I mean.. what???
How do they take hits/move/attack???

Like... what??
 
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Selon Thart
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They don't use banners, yeah, but judging from the glimpse of the unit cards they all have a single 'fixed' rank, possibly around the strength of blue rank units.
So I suppose they'll fare pretty much like other units fixed on a single rank (Archers and Crossbowmen currently - they're green rank only); I'll take a guess and say they'll be treated as blue units all the way. (Except for some commander passive abilities and keywords I suppose)

"Attacking/Defending as a unit of one rank higher/lower" might become tricky, I hope there'll be some kind of rule, else it'll be house rule time again.
 
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Cracky McCracken
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WrenHong wrote:
All these posts in and no-ne has mentioned the fact that these mini's have no banners!

I mean.. what???
How do they take hits/move/attack???

Like... what??


i think they are going to have their own rules, counters etc for moving attacking etc...

i'm pretty meh about this one. The Core Set ,WotW, LotR and TotV are enough for me. The game feels about complete at this point. (I might have to get WotN someday i reckon.)

It gives me Lann as the primary army with 7 types of units plus leaders, and since i don't know shit about the books, i figure i can mix the other 3 forces however i see fit. From what i glean though, the Tribes are supposed to be aligned with Lann not Stark... oh well.
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