My own personal rant zone

I set up this place so I can mostly talk about Tabletop Gaming...but occasionally some other stuff too...

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Onto Total War...

Ok, so this is a post I wrote, and ripped it off from the CBT fourms. Sorry, I get lazy:

First and foremost I wanted to thank the folks at the FanPro booth to take a moment when it was super busy to say hi, and make me feel really welcome. I also was totally floored being invited into their "Author's Game" on Saturday night. If it hadn't been midnight, the fact I am old, and that I had to get up early to check out of my hotel, I would have dived in no holds bared. So, thanks again made the trip to Indy worth it.

So, the book. I am gonna say here and now, I haven't read the whole thing. I am also not terribly interested in how the minutia has changed, or what have you, so I'll leave that for someone else to cover. I am more going to tell you guys how I plan on selling it to my customers. Those of you who evangelize the game to or for your local retailers might find some usefulness out of this. Feel free to ignore me, I am long winded Wink

Ok. This book is really nice looking. It has dropped BT firmly into modern times, with modern print quality. I am sad that it is going to be in my store late, but I will say here and now" "Screw it, it will be worth it." Y'all know the page count, and the fact that it is hard cover. This book should cost more. (Aw hell, now I opened the flood gates...but whatever). I know printing, and I know printing costs. I cannot imagine FanPro is making much off this book. I would readily recommend you upgrade. It really isn't like buying the BMR, and then the BMR (revised). This is a whole new ball of wax. I would suggest it not only for the rules updates, but for the User Interface of the book itself. The index is deep and really usable. By comparison, the Privateer Press release at the show; Warmachine: Superiority didn't even have an index (and was softcover for only $5 less). Seriously. It's a total overhaul.

The first twenty-ish pages of the book are awesome. This was the part that seriously renewed my faith that FanPro gets the fact they simply cannot continue to cater the hard-core base, but make new players feel welcome as well. These first pages manage to give an incredibly comprehensive view on what BT is, where to find support materials, the basics of the history, and the basics for play. HOORAY! Now _that_ is something I really hoped would pan out for the best, and it has. I know many of these pages were up as PDF previews, but the way they tie into the book is really nicely done.

The "examples of play" illustrations are the best I have seen in a BT product, and totally on par with some of the larger minis games out there. They are crisp, clear, and really make sense. I have been playing BT since 1984, and the "blocking terrain" illo made me truly understand it for the first time. (Stop laughing).

Ok, to sum this long rambling thing up: As a retailer carrying Wahammer 40k, Warhammer Fantasy Battle, Confrontation, Flames of War, Infinity: The Game, and Dark Age...I have a tool to get people excited about BT. I still stand firm that at it's core, this is not an Introductory product, but it will do as one until we can get something a little more suited to beginners.

I can't recommend enough pre-ordering through your local shop. Even if they don't carry the game, showing it to the owner might be enough to get them to carry one for the shelf. I throw a lot of props out to FanPro for bringing BT into the next generation. They did a really good job on this book.


At 11:20 AM, Anonymous irate squirrel said...

Having seen your copy I feel renewed hope for my first gaming love. The online previews totally put me off, skidding on pavement? EEWW. But I am glad to see that Total War looks to be a real winner and Battletech still is the standard when it comes to indexes, other games could enhance their playability greatly by inculuding a damn index!

I also really like the class shown by the folks to you at Gen Con, quality people are sometimes lacking in the industry.

At 5:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the kind words, Chris. Putting together Total Warfare was a huge undertaking, and although it didn't work out perfectly, I think we did pretty damned good. That's assuming Randall ever recovers from the process.

And check out the page numbers on each table in the back of the book ... what handsome young devil thought up that brilliant idea?! ;-)

Again, glad to hear you enjoyed the book, and I hope it leads to more BattleTech in your future!

Adam Jury


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