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Subject: New 4th edition of Napoleon on Kickstarter rss

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Kent Reuber
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Columbia Games announced that they're going to produce a 4th edition of Napoleon. It will be funded using Kickstarter beginning on Monday Feb 25th.

They've posted a link to some beta rules for the 4th edition. I haven't looked at them yet to compare how they differ from the 3rd edition. Perhaps some Napoleon experts can comment?

http://www.columbiagames.com/napoleon/3201-napoleon-rules-be...
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Keegan Fink
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I've mentioned this in another announcement thread, but I sure hope Columbia offers an upgrade kit as an option for owners of the 3rd edition.

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The 4th edition has 55 blocks vs. the 3rd edition's 84, so this version is returning to its original 1st ed incarnation in that respect.
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Seth Owen
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kentreuber wrote:
Columbia Games announced that they're going to produce a 4th edition of Napoleon. It will be funded using Kickstarter beginning on Monday Feb 25th.

They've posted a link to some beta rules for the 4th edition. I haven't looked at them yet to compare how they differ from the 3rd edition. Perhaps some Napoleon experts can comment?

http://www.columbiagames.com/napoleon/3201-napoleon-rules-be...

It's basically an updated version of the Second Edition (The Avalon Hill one) with streamlining of the battle board, a switch to the new Columbia standard way of doing firepower (low numbers good) and the leaders from the Third Edition.

This is the right approach, I think. The AH version was a really neat and tense little game -- when they doubled the number of blocks in the Third Edition they messed up the balance and timing of the game and it didn't work as well.
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Seth Owen
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Lugburz wrote:
I've mentioned this in another announcement thread, but I sure hope Columbia offers an upgrade kit as an option for owners of the 3rd edition.


From the sounds of it there would be nothing from the third edition that would be usable so I don't see any point in an upgrade kit. With an all new map, new stickers, new rules about the only thing left is the box.
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Lugburz wrote:
I've mentioned this in another announcement thread, but I sure hope Columbia offers an upgrade kit as an option for owners of the 3rd edition.


A bin to put your surplus blocks in
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Keegan Fink
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leroy43 wrote:
The 4th edition has 55 blocks vs. the 3rd edition's 84, so this version is returning to its original 1st ed incarnation in that respect.
This is both good and bad news. Great news for the game, although I literally just received this game in the mail a week ago — haven't even stickered the blocks! I wonder if they will at least concede to selling the board (hopefully larger in scale) by itself.

I'm a big fan of Columbia games, but my purchase couldn't have come at a worse time! Uggh. It's my own damn fault.

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Lugburz wrote:
I'm a big fan of Columbia games, but my purchase couldn't have come at a worse time!
To paraphrase one philosopher, "As you know, you play with the wargame you have, not the wargame you might want or wish to have at a later time." I haven't played 2nd edition, but I've had a lot of fun with 3rd edition (and I don't agree that the balance is messed up; I've had games come down to the wire).

Look, if 3rd edition really will be ruined by a new printing of the 2nd edition, you would've just traded/bought 2nd edition off the marketplace or eBay or something!
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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Another long time publisher slips over the line. Time to cut the crap about helping small indies get their start - it's still early days, but the Kickstarter model is in the process of eliminating the traditional publishing model for hobby games. Steve Jackson, Queen Games, Eagle Games... one game has even moved from GMT P500 to Kickstarter. Now it's Columbia. Consumers will shoulder all the risks in future. Noboby remembers Hansel & Gretel?
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kuhrusty wrote:
Look, if 3rd edition really will be ruined by a new printing of the 2nd edition, you would've just traded/bought 2nd edition off the marketplace or eBay or something!
I still have the original version, and wouldn't trade it for any subsequent edition.
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Mike Szarka
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Hmmm, I have the second edition and I have to figure out what the benefit would be.
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Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
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Sphere wrote:
Another long time publisher slips over the line. Time to cut the crap about helping small indies get their start - it's still early days, but the Kickstarter model is in the process of eliminating the traditional publishing model for hobby games. Steve Jackson, Queen Games, Eagle Games... one game has even moved from GMT P500 to Kickstarter. Now it's Columbia. Consumers will shoulder all the risks in future. Noboby remembers Hansel & Gretel?
George, how is it that the current wargaming preorder models don't already force consumers to shoulder the risk? I haven't seen any wargame publishers that are treating Kickstarter any differently than a preorder system with a different (and wider) audience.

Companies like Compass, Worthington, and OSG take your money up front and no one is complaining about their model. They collect the money at a different time, but this is no different than P500 when it first started (before GMT got better with its cashflow management). You have to trust the company either way.

I guess I don't see why KS should be singled out.
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Keegan Fink
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Earlier today, I sent Tom Dalgliesh @ Columbia Games an email asking about the practicality of using a 3rd Edition set to play the 4th edition rules. This was his reply:

Quote:
Keegan:

The new rules will certainly help you out and you can make our lowest pledge level ($10) on Kickstarter and get a copy of the rules.

There are changes to the map, but nothing fatal. Mostly we have added another row of towns north of Brussels to Liege.

The big problem for you, however, would be the labels since they will be sized to fit the new bigger blocks. They are too big for the smaller blocks you have.

Your best strategy is probably to send the your new game back (within 30 days) and pledge for a new 4th edition game. Then again, a third edition may have some value as a collectible later. The choice is yours.

Tom Dalgliesh

What a nice guy! I replied thanking him for the quick follow up, but let him know that I got my copy through NWS Games (so no return) — however I did petition him further by asking: "If I went ahead and labeled my 3rd edition set, providing I purchased the $10 rulebook via Kickstarter, is there anything else that would stand in the way of using the 3rd edition pieces to play a 4th edition style game? It sounded like the tactical battle maps were somewhat rearranged."

I also asked if the units which appear in the 4th edition appear as part of the 3rd edition unit list, and whether there would be any discrepancies in iconography. If he replies to my follow up, I'll make sure to post the answer here.

I do favor the old map artwork, so it would be nice if players who own the 3rd edition could have the best of both worlds by simply picking up the rulebook and adjusting their unit setup accordingly.


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Keegan Fink
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Follow up email from Tom (boy he's fast!):

Quote:
Keegan:

Depends on how fussy you are. The new edition has less blocks but the strengths of the blocks have changed. There are now more 4-step blocks in play. The OB is now based on "Corps" and not "Divisions". I guess you also need the new OB cards to keep it all straight.

Tom
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sdiberar wrote:
They collect the money at a different time, but this is no different than P500 when it first started (before GMT got better with its cashflow management).
Comparing P500 years ago with Kickstarter today sounds like an apologist line. If we're talking about methods of purchasing, shouldn't we compare Kickstarter with P500 today? I didn't order via P500 back when it was shaky. I've used it regularly it in recent years, and have yet to receive a game more than 5 weeks after my card was charged. Some have arrived within 10 days. How does Kickstarter compare with those numbers?

sdiberar wrote:
You have to trust the company either way.
Have you read the fine print? If you pre-order something from GMT, you are making a purchase and retain full legal rights as a consumer. That's not the case when you hand your money over to Kickstarter.
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Sphere wrote:
Comparing P500 years ago with Kickstarter today sounds like an apologist line.
I don't appreciate this sort of commentary, especially from you, George. It's beneath you.

For the record, I don't like Kickstarter, though I have backed a small handful of successful projects. But I don't think it's anything all that new under the sun either - it's just attracted a lot of shady "publishers" who don't know what they're getting into. But that's not who we're talking about, we're talking about Columbia, who've been around for forty years.

Quote:
If we're talking about methods of purchasing, shouldn't we compare Kickstarter with P500 today? I didn't order via P500 back when it was shaky.
Because it was the P500 of yesterday that allowed GMT to grow into the P500 of today. I still see no reason to single out Kickstarter like it doesn't have great similarities to wargame publishing preorder processes of yesterday and today.

Quote:
I've used it regularly in recent years, and have yet to receive a game more than 5 weeks after my card was charged. Some have arrived within 10 days. How does Kickstarter compare with those numbers?
I don't know of any successful (= delivered) Kickstarters from a pre-existing wargame company to compare with yet, but I don't see why companies like Columbia or GMT are such risks.

Quote:
Have you read the fine print? If you pre-order something from GMT, you are making a purchase and retain full legal rights as a consumer. That's not the case when you hand your money over to Kickstarter.
http://www.kickstarter.com/help/faq/kickstarter%20basics?ref...

Kickstarter wrote:
Is a creator legally obligated to fulfill the promises of their project?
Yes. Kickstarter's Terms of Use require creators to fulfill all rewards of their project or refund any backer whose reward they do not or cannot fulfill.
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sdiberar wrote:
Sphere wrote:
Comparing P500 years ago with Kickstarter today sounds like an apologist line.
I don't appreciate this sort of commentary, especially from you, George. It's beneath you.
That's exactly what I was thinking when I read the argument of yours I was referencing. I'm pretty sure we're missing the tone of voice / eye contact thing that would make it clear we're just discussing methods of game purchasing, not picking fights with people we've always gotten along well with.
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Sphere wrote:
That's exactly what I was thinking when I read the argument of yours I was referencing. I'm pretty sure we're missing the tone of voice / eye contact thing that would make it clear we're just discussing methods of game purchasing, not picking fights with people we've always gotten along well with.
Yes, I'd prefer to joust over the wargame table someday, rather than here...
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sdiberar wrote:
Kickstarter wrote:
Is a creator legally obligated to fulfill the promises of their project?
Yes. Kickstarter's Terms of Use require creators to fulfill all rewards of their project or refund any backer whose reward they do not or cannot fulfill.
That's damage control, made necessary by the number of people who took the time to read the actual agreement. How are those Katalyka backers doing? Any of them get their money back? I don't want to go through the whole thing again, but I think it takes a lot of spin to make Kickstarter sound like a good deal for consumers. If it were only going to knock out the far superior pre-orders systems, like P500, it wouldn't freak me out quite as badly. Looking at it long term, I think it foreshadows a larger sea change, changing the playing field for all purchasing. Consumers who are willing to go along with anything will get what they deserve eventually.
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Sphere wrote:
I don't want to go through the whole thing again, but I think it takes a lot of spin to make Kickstarter sound like a good deal for consumers.
Maybe, maybe not. Assuming Up Front actually comes out, it's an unbelievably good deal due to all the stretch goals.

Quote:
If it were only going to knock out the far superior pre-orders systems, like P500, it wouldn't freak me out quite as badly.
So far GMT and similar companies with a P500 sort of background are going to Kickstarter only for games "they believe in" that failed to make their preorder numbers.

Quote:
Looking at it long term, I think it foreshadows a larger sea change, changing the playing field for all purchasing. Consumers who are willing to go along with anything will get what they deserve eventually.
I'm not asking anyone to be a consumer who goes along with anything. I've passed on many preorder opportunities with Compass and Worthington because I don't want to pay immediately. I think a healthy skepticism is a great idea when approaching Kickstarter projects. I just don't think this is anything new (much less a "sea change"). We're talking about non-professionals publishing for a tiny clique audience, there's no sea to change.
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Quote:

From the sounds of it there would be nothing from the third edition that would be usable so I don't see any point in an upgrade kit. With an all new map, new stickers, new rules about the only thing left is the box.

I have the old edition (Avalon Hill Second Edition) and the last one from Columbia (Third Edition). For my, no problem at all with one or other edition, they are different enough to enjoy them separately, but... the best component for both editions, are the blocks from AH, with no stickers, the blocks are engraved. I want this new edition, but when I read "new stickers"... arrgggg!!!!!, nooooo, please, no stickers...

In this new edition, I hope they use engraved blocks, or at least, if the Kickstarter reaches a minimum, they think in the possibility of use engraved blocks rather than Stickers, like AH edition or the blocks from Napoleon's Triumph, obviously with better and modern desings, that the old AH edition.

This, at least in my opinion...

By the way, sorry for my English.

Greetings.

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so...2nd edition number of blocks and 3rd edition map's dimension? do I got it right? I just bought EAGLES, I suppose I will still have the chance to melt the games, won't I?
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I have never 'kickstartered' a project, but this is one I would love to. Is it interesting for non-USA people? Are shipping costs too high for us?

I guess that when the project is up all this information will be clearly given...
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franchi wrote:
I have never 'kickstartered' a project, but this is one I would love to. Is it interesting for non-USA people? Are shipping costs too high for us?

I guess that when the project is up all this information will be clearly given...
International shipping costs will probably be pretty high, as the weight of a block game may very well affect the cost, in addition to the recent increase in shipping fees through the United States Post Office.
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leroy43 wrote:
The 4th edition has 55 blocks vs. the 3rd edition's 84, so this version is returning to its original 1st ed incarnation in that respect.

Not quite. The AH edition (2nd) had 48 blocks, not 55. Three of the new ones are the Napoleon, Blucher and Wellington blocks. Not sure what the other 4 would be.

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