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A Study in Emerald» Forums » General

Subject: Am I the only one who is luke warm on this? rss

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Mark Sautman
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I really like Martin Wallace's games, especially the historical ones where a lot of the history and theme comes through in some of the special rules. I also enjoy the Cthulhu Mythos along with Neil Gaiman's works.

However, when I look at the Kickstarter page, the rules, and the cards, I'm having a hard time getting very excited. Many of his games are heavy games that offer tons of strategic decisions. This one, however, looks really light - maybe lighter than Discworld or Moongha (neither of which I minded).

Then I look at the cards and they look dull, even for a Euro game. The theme looks very pasted on. For example, the Necronomicon gets me 3 VP. I think Knizia could have come up with more theme than that. Then you look at some of the actions and I don't see any link between the card and it's action. So the Freemasons allows me to discard cards and the Holy Brotherhood allows me to move my cubes around.

The ads make this look like it should be an Ameritrash game, but the theme does not seem to come through. However, as a Euro game, it does not look very compelling either. I thought this would be an instant buy when I saw the announcement. I'd be tempted to wait for the reviews to come in, but I'm not sure how many extra copies for sale Treefrog will have. I've gotten stuck with a number of expensive duds from Kickstarter recently and am trying to avoid another one. Martin's recent track record is not overly encouraging either (Hobbit, Dr. Who, PI).

Am I missing something that others are seeing?

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Paul Glickman
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Actually, a similar thing happened with me, after printing out the PnP cards I realized that a lot of it was very bland.

Design intent does come through better than AFAOS, but I find that it's still kind of odd. Are we supposed to fight over cards, or ignore each other and buy what we want?

The idea of a deck-building in which people fight over the cards is fairly novel, though I find the slow bidding style appears that it'll probably be rather clunky.

I also find the price point ridiculous. I spent significantly less on Mage Knight. The inability to buy from an online retailer at great discount means that the MRSP on this is probably about $100, relative to other games. Does this game look like it belongs in the same category as Eclipse? Absolutely not.

I'll play the PnP once my finals are over, and then if there isn't one yet, I'll write a review.
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Clyde W
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I am lukewarm...don't really like anything having to do with zombies. I'd definitely try the game, but am passing on the chance to pay $77 for it.
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Jack Francisco
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The only reasons I'm on board for this is because I was able to get in on one of the signed copies and that it's Martin Wallace. I'll admit that Martin has churned out a couple of clunkers, but if this is a game on par with say, Discworld, I'll be thrilled. I've enjoyed Discworld as a lighter game with crazy stuff going on. I hope this doesn't turn out to be a game that is just trying to take advantage of the designer's name alone to boost sales.
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Paul Glickman
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Considering the completely exclusive nature of the sales, the designer's name, and the three aspects to the theme (Neil Gaiman, Cthulhu, and Sherlock Holmes), there is almost no way that this game won't sell quite a few copies. Seems like the plan is to abuse that fact. Especially the exclusivity.

Whether or not that'll impact the gameplay, we'll see in time. At least it's available free to try out (if you have time and a bit of money and a copy of Eclipse), so we'll see!
 
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A hundred bucks before customs steps in? The game would have to be amazing, and although this game has a lot of things (theme and game mechanics) I like individually, mixing them all together isn't making it more appealing to me.
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clydeiii wrote:
I am lukewarm...don't really like anything having to do with zombies. I'd definitely try the game, but am passing on the chance to pay $77 for it.

For once, we agree, my friend. Cthulhu does nothing for me. Zombies and vampires do nothing for me. I'm not a big fan of either secret player identities or of secret double agents. The theme feels like this weird mish-mash, which I guess is the point. The rules look like they might work, but there are no mechanisms which have a "wow" factor for me.

I will happily play this if someone in my group buys it (and there's a reasonably good chance of that happening), but I won't seek it out. I'm a little uneasy that this might be a continuation of the populist Martin that we've been seeing lately, as opposed to the strategic-games Martin we originally fell in love with. If I do wind up playing it, I should have no trouble keeping an open mind and hopefully I'll love it. But right now, no, I'm not particularly excited by this. And given how much I've adored Wallace's games in the past, that makes me a little sad.
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Dan Stokes
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The vampires and zombies are lifted directly from the Cthulu mythos, and there's apparently a real anarchist from the time period in which the game is set who honestly believed he was close to resurrecting the dead. That was Martin's justification for including them, anyway.

This is definitely a hobbyist game, which I think explains the exclusivity. Its design is complex enough that you couldn't easily learn it if you didn't already understand the concept of a deck builder (which is almost a secondary mechanic), making it a difficult sell on less specialist sites.

The price point, I think, seems high to those in the US who are used to enjoying cheap games, but for those of us in other parts of the world, 50GBP is pretty normal.
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Feels like one of those movies where they cram too many famous people in it just to sell tickets before people know better.

Could be good but.... yeah, probably not.
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I just fail to see how people are pooh-poohing this game. I think there are going to be a lot of regretful people come October or November.
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whattheproblemis wrote:
I just fail to see how people are pooh-poohing this game. I think there are going to be a lot of regretful people come October or November.


And those, my friend, are the people upon whom one can turn a buck. devil
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senorcoo wrote:
whattheproblemis wrote:
I just fail to see how people are pooh-poohing this game. I think there are going to be a lot of regretful people come October or November.


And those, my friend, are the people upon whom one can turn a buck. devil


Yeah, I also don't like the we've-got-fans-over-a-barrel sentiment of the kickstarter-only opportunity.

I'll pass but feel free to enjoy/exploit!
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zautman wrote:
I really like Martin Wallace's games, especially the historical ones where a lot of the history and theme comes through in some of the special rules. I also enjoy the Cthulhu Mythos along with Neil Gaiman's works.

However, when I look at the Kickstarter page, the rules, and the cards, I'm having a hard time getting very excited. Many of his games are heavy games that offer tons of strategic decisions. This one, however, looks really light - maybe lighter than Discworld or Moongha (neither of which I minded).

Then I look at the cards and they look dull, even for a Euro game. The theme looks very pasted on. For example, the Necronomicon gets me 3 VP. I think Knizia could have come up with more theme than that. Then you look at some of the actions and I don't see any link between the card and it's action. So the Freemasons allows me to discard cards and the Holy Brotherhood allows me to move my cubes around.

The ads make this look like it should be an Ameritrash game, but the theme does not seem to come through. However, as a Euro game, it does not look very compelling either. I thought this would be an instant buy when I saw the announcement. I'd be tempted to wait for the reviews to come in, but I'm not sure how many extra copies for sale Treefrog will have. I've gotten stuck with a number of expensive duds from Kickstarter recently and am trying to avoid another one. Martin's recent track record is not overly encouraging either (Hobbit, Dr. Who, PI).

Am I missing something that others are seeing?



Play it. It is no where near as light as Discworld.
 
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dkearns wrote:
Yeah, I also don't like the we've-got-fans-over-a-barrel sentiment of the kickstarter-only opportunity.

I'll pass but feel free to enjoy/exploit!

A Study in Emerald wrote:
This game will initially only be available via Kickstarter or direct from Treefrog Games, it will not be going into general distribution. We may or may not publish a second edition of the game for general distribution,

It isn't "kickstarter only". If you prefer to wait for reviews etc you can do so and order it direct from Treefrog later.

I really don't understand why there are so many complaints about this project. It's got a competitive price, the rulebook is available to be read, you can even print and play it beforehand if that's your thing.
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Derry Salewski
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tuathail wrote:
dkearns wrote:
Yeah, I also don't like the we've-got-fans-over-a-barrel sentiment of the kickstarter-only opportunity.

I'll pass but feel free to enjoy/exploit!

A Study in Emerald wrote:
This game will initially only be available via Kickstarter or direct from Treefrog Games, it will not be going into general distribution. We may or may not publish a second edition of the game for general distribution,

It isn't "kickstarter only". If you prefer to wait for reviews etc you can do so and order it direct from Treefrog later.

I really don't understand why there are so many complaints about this project. It's got a competitive price, the rulebook is available to be read, you can even print and play it beforehand if that's your thing.


Because it's taking a bunch of well loved things and puting them together. The bar is set very high.

And it is not a competitive price in the usa, where a lot of users are probably from. It might be a fair price for a good game, but similarly awesome game companies with similarly awesome games have put many great games into deeply discounted distribution. It might be a competitive product, but the price tag is not where it's winning.
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Geoff Hall
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scifiantihero wrote:

And it is not a competitive price in the usa, where a lot of users are probably from. It might be a fair price for a good game, but similarly awesome game companies with similarly awesome games have put many great games into deeply discounted distribution. It might be a competitive product, but the price tag is not where it's winning.


And that's nice if you're from the US, especially wrt to KS where you might be used to free shipping. For the rest of us getting a limited distribution game for £50 inc. postage is actually a fair deal. I usually have to shell out anywhere from $10 to $30 extra in shipping on KS projects whereas US peeps get shipping free. Now this is on UK kickstarter I'm still paying for shipping, just not as much, although I'm pretty damn sure that I'll be subsidising the shipping costs to the US and other countries given the fixed price!
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Dennis Ku
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Oh, Martin Wallace. I loved you once. I even named my beloved orange kitty Wallace. But boy, oh, boy, since London came out it has really been a drought. I miss you dearly. Please come home again.
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whattheproblemis wrote:
I just fail to see how people are pooh-poohing this game. I think there are going to be a lot of regretful people come October or November.

Can I ask how so? Do you think it's going to be the gameplay that's going to prove outstanding? Or... what? I'm just curious to hear why you think people might be saying "Oh, I wish I bought this" after it's been published. (edit: and wondering if I might be one of those people, lol.)

For the record, I looked at the Kickstarter and it didn't grab me. It did, however, prompt me to seek out the Gaiman short story, which in turn led me to the collection of Sherlock Holmes-Lovecraft mashups, so, win for me!

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futhee wrote:
Oh, Martin Wallace. I loved you once. I even named my beloved orange kitty Wallace. But boy, oh, boy, since London came out it has really been a drought. I miss you dearly. Please come home again.


Really? I'm much rather play Discworld than London any day.

It's not God's Playground, but it's still a blast.
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Adverb wrote:
whattheproblemis wrote:
I just fail to see how people are pooh-poohing this game. I think there are going to be a lot of regretful people come October or November.

Can I ask how so? Do you think it's going to be the gameplay that's going to prove outstanding? Or... what? I'm just curious to hear why you think people might be saying "Oh, I wish I bought this" after it's been published. (edit: and wondering if I might be one of those people, lol.)

For the record, I looked at the Kickstarter and it didn't grab me. It did, however, prompt me to seek out the Gaiman short story, which in turn led me to the collection of Sherlock Holmes-Lovecraft mashups, so, win for me!



The game's mechanics are similar to A Few Acres of Snow, which I loved until we discovered the Hammer. The player interaction in Emerald looks to be much higher than your typical euro, I'm a sucker for hidden roles, and the theme is pretty quirky. The art, from what I've seen looks pretty solid, as well. Finally, BGGers are usually crazy about limited edition games (see the current prices for Mission Red Planet or Nefarious, for example). In the end, I think I can easily justify the price. If I like the game, it'll be worth the $70. If I don't like it, I can probably sell it for at least that much before it sees wider distribution in 2015 (if at all).
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tssfulk wrote:
Really? I'm much rather play Discworld than London any day.


I like both, but Discworld really is fun, especially with some "beverages" and the right crowd.
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zautman wrote:
I really like Martin Wallace's games, especially the historical ones where a lot of the history and theme comes through in some of the special rules. I also enjoy the Cthulhu Mythos along with Neil Gaiman's works.

However, when I look at the Kickstarter page, the rules, and the cards, I'm having a hard time getting very excited. Many of his games are heavy games that offer tons of strategic decisions. This one, however, looks really light - maybe lighter than Discworld or Moongha (neither of which I minded).

Then I look at the cards and they look dull, even for a Euro game. The theme looks very pasted on. For example, the Necronomicon gets me 3 VP. I think Knizia could have come up with more theme than that. Then you look at some of the actions and I don't see any link between the card and it's action. So the Freemasons allows me to discard cards and the Holy Brotherhood allows me to move my cubes around.

The ads make this look like it should be an Ameritrash game, but the theme does not seem to come through. However, as a Euro game, it does not look very compelling either. I thought this would be an instant buy when I saw the announcement. I'd be tempted to wait for the reviews to come in, but I'm not sure how many extra copies for sale Treefrog will have. I've gotten stuck with a number of expensive duds from Kickstarter recently and am trying to avoid another one. Martin's recent track record is not overly encouraging either (Hobbit, Dr. Who, PI).

Am I missing something that others are seeing?




Amen. I was right about to post something similar, when I noticed that you had already done so.

You've got an awesome IP here - Cthulhu with Sherlock Holmes. And heck, I even like Wallace when he's good. But when it's cube pushing ala London, no thanks. I have no idea how they managed to make this awesome theme so unappealing. The video was worse than an 80's telethon, the game play example is so boring that I almost took my life on the spot. "And you know, since no Cthulhu game can live without Sanity, we threw that in too!" Err...how about going back to the source literature and thinking up something new?

Say what you want, but FFG would have given this the love it deserved. It should have been FFG. shake It should have been FFG.


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whattheproblemis wrote:

The game's mechanics are similar to A Few Acres of Snow, which I loved until we discovered the Hammer. The player interaction in Emerald looks to be much higher than your typical euro, I'm a sucker for hidden roles, and the theme is pretty quirky. The art, from what I've seen looks pretty solid, as well. Finally, BGGers are usually crazy about limited edition games (see the current prices for Mission Red Planet or Nefarious, for example). In the end, I think I can easily justify the price. If I like the game, it'll be worth the $70. If I don't like it, I can probably sell it for at least that much before it sees wider distribution in 2015 (if at all).


Wait, is Mission Red Planet going for big bucks these days!?! ~Dusts off his copy and goes to look~
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Haha, I just did the same thing.
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I agree with the naysayers regarding the sterile card descriptions and strange theme disconnect, but ultimately the artwork and graphic design killed my impulse to buy. It just looks so....low budget.
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