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Subject: New Developer (and Producer / Designer) for Android Netrunner. rss

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Enon Sci
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Between timestamp 0:54 and 1:00, we hear Damon Stone reference that he is taking over the position of developer, producer and designer for Android: Netrunner. Currently, he's the lead developer, producer and designer for A Game of Thrones (a game that the majority of that interview is probably about; the Netrunner news is more of an aside).

Not a staggering bit of copy, but newsworthy nevertheless.

edit: I must admit, I was fairly content with this being in Lukas Litzsinger's hands, what with the well reasoned articles on FFG's development process and balance of the core. However, I'm not saying this is a doom and gloom moment; not knowing Damon Stone's work or personal level of exposure to Netrunner, I can't say whether this will be beneficial or not.

That said, I'm naturally curious to see if we will intuit a shift in "feel," or general approach to the design as things move forward.
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Yiorgos Golfinopoulos
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I don't like it one bit.

I didn't like the direction the game went when the did the same thing with Warhammer:Invasion.

That Lukas guy seemed to have done everything right so far and I was excited about Netrunner. Bad news.
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Anarchosyn wrote:
Currently, he's the lead developer, producer and designer for A Game of Thrones (a game that the majority of that interview is probably about; the Netrunner news is more of an aside).
Wow, Damon is going to get really busy because he's _also_ the lead developer (or was that designer?) for Call of Cthulhu (or at least he was, last I heard).
 
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Lee Shelton

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This may be completely wrong, but based on my vague recollection of events in the past it seems like they use Lukas to get a new line off the ground, and after a successful release hand it off to someone else for further development?
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David Boeren
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jhaelen wrote:
Wow, Damon is going to get really busy because he's _also_ the lead developer (or was that designer?) for Call of Cthulhu (or at least he was, last I heard).


He still is, that is unless they announce another change. Personally, I'd rather see them pass off AGoT if they need to free up some of his time - he's been doing a great job with Cthulhu.
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Paul Imboden
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All we can do is wait, and then either continue to support or opt-out as AD:N grows up. But right now? I'm excited about the future.
 
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Wesley Kinslow
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I think this train would be pretty difficult to derail - the game is amazing and they've improved all of the fiddly things.

I think the game is more accessible now and in the hands of Fantasy Flight it'll get the promotion it needs to thrive. I expect to be playing this one for years down the road.
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Beyer
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wedgeex wrote:
I think this train would be pretty difficult to derail - the game is amazing and they've improved all of the fiddly things.

I think the game is more accessible now and in the hands of Fantasy Flight it'll get the promotion it needs to thrive. I expect to be playing this one for years down the road.

But that is the one big hazard you run with card games like these. Very few cards will drastically change the meta.
If you then choose to house rule that you aren't using those particular cards every other argument you present on BGG is going to be void because your meta is lacking its most dominant components.

The core idea behind Netrunner is solid, but it's still a card game that lives off of quirky ideas and interactions and those have a tendency to get out of hand in time.

I have my fingers crossed as well, but it's an inherent danger of LCG/CCGs
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Peter Hall
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When I've talked with FFG people about LCG design in the past, they've said they like to eventually have every designer working on two games.

I've surmised that they also like to switch things up fairly early in the process to get some New Blood (hah!) involved. Invasion, for example, was designed by Eric Lang, developed by Nate French, and they've already had two lead designers for expansions in the three years it's been around (James Hata and Lukas). And Damon may have briefly been in the mix, too. Don't recall.

My guess is that they are just shuffling people around based on the fact that NetRunner and Star Wars are likely to become two of their biggest lines, while Cthulhu is getting back-burnered a bit and (total speculation) Invasion may go the same route in the future.

I woudln't worry too much about who the current lead designer is. A lot of people are going to be involved in what finally gets published.
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Big Head Zach
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Agree. "Lead Developer" just means they get final edit/approval over things. It doesn't necessarily mean they are the only person coming up with cards.
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Enon Sci
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nlshelton wrote:
This may be completely wrong, but based on my vague recollection of events in the past it seems like they use Lukas to get a new line off the ground, and after a successful release hand it off to someone else for further development?


That's what I was thinking. This happens in MMORPG development a lot.

bhz1 wrote:
Agree. "Lead Developer" just means they get final edit/approval over things. It doesn't necessarily mean they are the only person coming up with cards.


Right, but are you saying you don't see how this could radically effect things? It doesn't always have to be a profound effect, but it certainly can be, depending on the vision of the editor.
 
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Mat Nowak
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Keep in mind though that the playtesters are staying pretty stable so even if there should be some radical changes down the road from a designer at least there's that constant to keep things in balance. I for one am excited to see what the future holds.
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I was standing near by durin g the interview and asked him about it. He plyed the original Netrunner and it has always been one of his favorite games. He was hired at FFG to "take over" A Game of Thrones (yes he used airquotes around that, apparently he still works with Nate on it which is important later) but in his interview process they asked what his favorite games are and he said Netrunner and that was when they let him know they hadthe license and that he'd probably be working on it.

Lukas is the guy who did the adaption of the game, but Damon was part of the development team and will continue to work with and consult Lukas on Netrunner. He mentioned no one completely hands over games, the LCG team consult with each other at every stage apparently, they all play each others games and even have regular tournaments.

With Lukas still being involved and Damon having done such a good job with Cthulhu and Thrones I'm not personally worried. The adaption is brilliant and if they are working together I can't see how the future is anything other than shiny.
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Myck Kabongo
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I for one am very happy to see the game in the hands of a long time fan. I've seen what happens when design responsibilities for games are handed to people who become fans after the fact and it is usually not pretty.
 
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Steve
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Damon's a smart guy. He'll be good for the game, I'm sure.
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dangerouslycheesy wrote:
...Cthulhu is getting back-burnered a bit and (total speculation) ...



This is more than speculation for the CoC LCG at this point. FFG will no longer be releasing Asylum packs. Instead, every 4 months they will be offering a 165 card (55 different cards) "Deluxe" Expansions at $30 retail. Here is where the speculation begins: I think this is a last ditch effort at fan service for the CoC LCG, a game that is sliding its way into the abyss of olde R'lyeh...
 
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Possibly, but Cthulu was the firstgame to go to the fixed format that was the model for the LCG distribution format. They may be using this as another test run for distribution changes. Lord knows the number of products the game puts out makes it a bit difficult for retailers.

It could be because the game has not been selling well, but it could also bebecause the sales are stable and they are looking for a new way to increase the sales or lower their overhead. Hard to be sure.

Either way it has generally been seen as a positive change by the players. I know I've been wanting faction boxes for a while.
 
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