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Request for Scenario Issues
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mjwest
Commodore


Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 3498
Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 11:15 pm    Post subject: Request for Scenario Issues Reply with quote

[I realize this might not work perfectly, but I am going to go and try this anyway ...]

In preparation for the Master Scenario Book, I would like for anyone who believes that a scenario is broken or has problems to tell me those issues. You can either send a PM, or make a post in this thread.

Note that I am not asking for opinions on the scenarios themselves. There are always going to be scenarios you don't like or don't appeal to you. Rather, I am looking for scenarios that are totally broken or have rules errors or something like that.

Also note that I am not promising that anything will necessarily get changed. (E.g. Hood Goes Down won't change, though it could possibly use an extra sentence explaining it.) However, I know people have mentioned on this forum before about problems with some scenarios (particularly the earlier ones) and if we can get them fixed, I would like to at least try to do so. Steve has not asked me to do this (at least not yet). I am simply trying to be proactive.
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Mike
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Joined: 07 May 2007
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Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 1:22 am    Post subject: The Dakota Incident Reply with quote

Scenario:
The Dakota Incident (8CM30)

Product:
Communique #42

Problem:
1. All the Federation ship has to do is move at baseline speed 24 to win.
2. Two levels of victory conditions are listed, but both are the same.

Solution:
Somehow during the editing a couple of important things were left out.
1. Add this as a Special Rule:
The Federation ship is limited to a baseline speed of 16 for this scenario. You may not use acceleration, but you may use deceleration.
2. This is how the victory conditions should read:
Victory: You win an overwhelming victory by executing an emergency transport of the crew of the freighter to your ship, exiting the right side of the right map with less than half your internal system boxes marked as damaged, and not causing more than 10 internal damage points on any Klingon ship. You win a marginal victory by rescuing the crew and exiting the right side of the right map with less than half your internal system boxes damaged. You win a tactical victory by rescuing the freighter crew and exiting the right side of the right map.
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Last edited by Mike on Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:38 am; edited 1 time in total
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Savedfromwhat
Commander


Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 641

PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scenario:
The Destruction of Mobile Base X-Ray
Product:
Romulan Border
Problem:
The scenario requires the Romulans to CAPTURE the base to win, a Romulan War Eagle only has 5 marines, the base has 8, plus an astute federation player will add marines from the DW. As it stands the scenario is unwinable by the Romulans.
Solution:
Add marines to the Romulan War Eagle
Change the victory conditions
Remove marines from the Federation units
Create a scenario specific rule for combat casualties
Any combination of the above
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JimDauphinais
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Joined: 22 Nov 2009
Posts: 766
Location: Chesterfield, MO

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scenario:

(8CM13) Asteroid Operations



Problem:

The setup calls for the Tholian Base Station to be setup on the center of a map panel. The Tholian Base Station needs to be setup in the center of the map, not the center of a map panel, in order for the scenario setup to work.

While the ships all start within 20 to 30 hexes of the Tholian Base Station, the starting positions for the opposing ships will not be able to fit on a 3 x 2 small hex map or 4 x 3 large hex map due to the distance and direction setup requirements relative to the Tholian Base Station.



Recommended Solution:

Change:

"Setup the map with 3 panels across and 2 panels high if using small hexes (4 wide and 3 high with large hexes)."

to

"Setup the map with 4 panels across and 2 panels high if using small hexes (6 wide and 3 high with large hexes)."


Change:

"Place a Tholian Base Station in the center of a map panel."

to

"Place a Tholian Base Station in the center of the map."



Alternative Solution:

Change:

"Place one Klingon D6 and two F5s 30 hexes from the Tholian base anywhere between directions E and F."

to

"Place one Klingon D6 and two F5s 20 hexes from the Tholian base anywhere between directions E and F."


Change:

"Place a Tholian Base Station in the center of a map panel."

to

"Place a Tholian Base Station in the center of the map."



Other Problems:

None. No other mechanical issues were identified during play and the play balance appeared to be within the range of 40/60 to 60/40.
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Kang
Fleet Captain


Joined: 23 Sep 2007
Posts: 1967
Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

(8CM76) HUN IN THE SUN, Comm #89

Special rule 2 - Effects of Star Glare. The impact directions for seeking weapons are incorrect. It reads, "A seeking weapon will miss if it "impacts" its target from directions B through C". What it should say is, "A seeking weapon will miss if it "impacts" its target from direction E or F".

Alternatively if the SWs are moving in directions B or C, then the weapons will miss.

This is all because the star is in directions B and C, so logically a weapon impacting from directions E or F will be facing in directions B or C respectively, i.e. looking at the star's glare and therefore unable to find the target.
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Mike
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Joined: 07 May 2007
Posts: 1565
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scenario:
(8J) Sabotage!

Product:
Communique #2

Problem:
The printed format is not according to the now-finalized standard.

Solution:
Edit to put the scenario in the standard format.

NOTE: This suggestion also applies to Base Assault in Communique #1, (8C3) The Battle of Juggernaut Alpha in Comm#5 (which also has another problem: the sections go from 8C to 8H), (8C1) The First Battle of Juggernaut Beta in Comm#6 (which also has the problem of going from 8C to 8H).
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Steve Cole
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Joined: 11 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The scenario format has evolved over time. There really isn't much point in going back to "fix" the old ones and designer time is prioritized to NEW products. Would you rather have that scenario fixed or a new scenario in a new product? And don't offer to fix it for us; it would take us as much time to check your fixes as ot do it ourselves, and again, the priority is new stuff.
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Kang
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Joined: 23 Sep 2007
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Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That all makes sense. The only other point I would raise is that this *is* to do with a new product - the Master Scenario Book. I think Mike just wants everything to be straight before it goes into that new product.

Is that product in fact in the pipeline, btw? I'd definitely be interested if it was.
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Panda21
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Joined: 23 Sep 2014
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I, for one, would like to have old ones fixed. I definitely understand the business priority, but as a new customer, I feel the need to remind you that these scenarios aren't old to me, they are still new. They reflect completely on my FIRST IMPRESSION of the game.

I'm trying to learn FC by playing these scenarios and I'm still not sure what things are minor issues I should just change myself and what items are scenario breaking, so I don't know what is ok to change and what is just "cheating".

I do understand that it might not seem a priority to change old stuff, but when you are trying to market to a new crowd and get new customers, these issues can be frustrating.

For instance, when I start trying to play the Planet killer scenario and it says to set to the map as 3 x 2, but put the ships 50 hexes from the Planet Killer, which I can't do, I get stuck. I ended up printing out more map sheets and laying it out 4 x 2.

May seem like a minor issue to most of the veterans around here, but I honestly questioned what to do. I didn't know if I was breaking balance by changing the rules, or which rule to adjust.

So, then I played the scenario and found that the 350 points of ships I used easily blew up the planet killer. It didn't stand a chance. So I search the board and find that many people have mentioned the issue but it has never been fixed. It's relatively unbalanced the way it is. So I just spent 2 hours of my time with my kids playing through a scenario that wasn't that fun because I (the PK) never stood any realistic chance.

It just makes it hard to recommend the game to a bunch of other players when the details aren't fixed right.

Don't get me wrong. I love the game, and I love playing it. But having to tell people, "You should get this game! It's great!" is very different from saying "You should get this game, but be patient with it cause there are mistakes in the scenarios and some are unbalanced, so you might waste your entire afternoon to find out you picked a bad one".

If you want to market to the same game to new people, it would be greatly appreciated to have some time spent fixing these kinds of details. It's all about professional presentation and refinement and polish.

Sorry to be a downer. I do love the game and plan on buying more of it. Please keep up the good work. But this kind of cleanup would easily take my review scores from a 7/10 to a 9/10.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The format may be slightly different but that's just rearranging the deck chairs. The ship is the same. They play the same.

I am not trying to be an evil overlord. I just don't understand the question. The same information is presented in a slightly different order or wording. The result is the same. It works the same. I don't understand the need to rearrange the deck chairs.

Could you maybe email me a specific example of what is "not fixed" and why it matters? I just do not get it.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 01, 2014 12:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the record, what I was asking for (and why this topic even exists), is for errors or imbalances in the scenarios. I don't care about the formats. I just want the errors and things that break scenarios.
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Panda21
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 01, 2014 1:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be fair, Steve has a great point and I think my comment came into this thread at the wrong moment. I was simply reacting to the question of "Would you rather have that scenario fixed or a new scenario in a new product?".

The formats do not matter at all to me. I just wanted to make the point that the old scenarios do need fixed as well as creating new ones.

When I look at a scenario, I want 3 things:

1. The scenario should provide a "story". Why are we here? What am I doing? What's my motivation.
2. Balance. Defined by me as "Given equally skilled players, both sides should have an equal chance of winning". In some cases, this may be violated, but that should be obvious. If a certain side has an obvious disadvantage due to story circumstances, that needs to be clear.
3. Clarity and Internal Consistency. The rules should work, always be followed, the setup should be possible, etc.

I think that #1 has been done outstandingly well. The stories and backdrop are well done and provide great context. I am truly excited to try more of them and I appreciate all the time and effort that has gone into this.

I have only had the chance to play 3 scenarios so far, counting The Duel as a scenario.

The Planet Killer violates #2 and #3 for me.
#2: At 350 points of enemies, the PK has no realistic chance. I know it recommends 300 for feds, but that's not what we were using.
#3: The PK card says "Fleet and Squadron" both on one side. I wasn't sure whether to use fleet or squadron ships or if it mattered. A little advice in the scenario writeup would be really helpful.
#3: The map can't be set up as indicated. To be fair, one person pointed out that I have just enough room if I go diagonally, but that makes floating the map very awkward. I was afraid that moving the ships closer would throw off the balance as they wouldn't have time to prepare for the PK appropriately.

The Coming of the Meteor violates #3 for me.
#3: I wrote another thread in the rules questions forum, but the asteroid rules and the scenario rules are in conflict at several points. It's not huge, but for a new player, it confused my family. So far, the response on the forum was effectively, "just ignore the asteroid rules".

I think both of these could be easily fixed, and have a great foundation. Minor rewrites would change both of these from head scratching confusion to easy setup and an enjoyable afternoon. I know they may seem like trivial issues, but it makes getting into the games just a bit harder when you have no idea what you are doing.

BTW, thanks for listening. I appreciate a company that asks these types of questions and is willing to listen to their customers.
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Panda21
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Joined: 23 Sep 2014
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

8CM61 Relic

I don't believe there is an actual Cyndarian ship card anywhere that I can find listed. That's fine except that in Special Rule #2, it mentions capturing the ship by marines but doesn't say how many marines are on the Cyndarian ship. It lists phaser counts and everything else I would need, just not marines.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 03, 2014 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You don't need a cyndarian ship card. The scenario gives you everything you need to know. It's jut a thing, a place, an object, a wreck, not a functional starship.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 03, 2014 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The conversation was about fixing the formats of the old scenarios. Everything I said was about format, not scenario play or balance.

As for scenario play or balance, players send reports all the time about one scenario or another. Some are questions (what does this rule mean?) and others are "There is no way for X to win."

I put the reports into a file and check it every time I get another report to see if a concensus has appeared. I do not "fix" a scenario when ONE player says it's not workable. I need several people to tell me it's not workable before I fix anything. I don't get a lot of "there is no way for X to win" reports. Very few, in fact. There are just as many reports saying the planet killer can't lose as there are sayng it can't win, so I'm not doing anything until one side or other other has a majority.

What causes that (some players say A, some say B) to happen? Individual play style, individual skill, and individual preferences. Sometimes a player only uses Klingons and gets a different result than players who only use Feds or Gorns. Sometimes a house rule causes things to go crazy, and people just use their house rules and don't tell me that's the cause of their result. Sometimes someone doesn't really understand the game or is just play wrong about something. (For a decade after a clear and specific SFB rule said that "sudden impact" had never ever been the way that it worked when you launched a dron inside the target hex people still believe and swore on the bible that it did work that way. Some of those were drone-empire players with strong personalities who liked that rule and used it to win every game and ignored everyone who showed them the black-letter rule that it didn't work that way and never had.) Sometimes the horoscopes do not align.

What to do? Easy, fix it yourself. Give more points to the side you think can't win. Change the starting position. Do something else. Seriously, FC and FC scenarios are so clean and easy that 98% of people who find a problem never report it at all, they just fix it themselves and move on. (And frankly, over half of players never play the scenarios at all; they just play "point battles" with their friends.)

So I'm not being dismissive. I just don't have enough data to PROVE that something is wrong and which way it's wrong, and it's just far too easy for individual players to fix the scenarios themselves.
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