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Simpler rules?
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madpax
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 31 May 2009
Posts: 49
Location: France

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:50 pm    Post subject: Simpler rules? Reply with quote

I've played 1st edition a lot of time ago. It was fun and quick.
I tried to play the new edition some times ago, and when I recall my game, I remember it was much more complicated and lenghty.
So I wonder if the current version of F&E couldn't be payed with a simpler version of the rules?

Marc
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leave out fighters, scouts, maulers, admirals, marine generals, diplomacy, and you're about there.
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kinshi
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 09 Apr 2011
Posts: 84
Location: Port Orchard, WA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Then you would have Federation Commander & Empire Very Happy and that's NOT a bad thing.
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jmt
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 395
Location: Plano, TX

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There has been talk about FnE getting the FC treatment, but nothing concrete yet. Do a search here and on the Discus BBS for the discussions. Cool
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madpax
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 31 May 2009
Posts: 49
Location: France

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:
Leave out fighters, scouts, maulers, admirals, marine generals, diplomacy, and you're about there.

I don't want to lose chrome (although I wonder why there are fighters in a strategic game), but I remember game turns tend to drag a lot due to an overall complexity.

Marc
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Because fighters are in every WW2 strategic pacific war game, at one level or by one means or another.
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ericphillips
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Joined: 16 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe until the day when we get an Axis and Allies F&E, maybe someone could write a set of simplified rules from F&E that could be sold on E23 and used with the current game. With the PDF you would use only some of the counters, etc. Basically a subset of the basic rules for F&E, with some system simplified (like Fed Com simplified some systems in SFB).

This would be cool because I would buy it and the F&E game. Right now I don't own F&E and no one in my casual oriented game group will play it.

My group will play things like Battlestar Galactica, Twilight Imperium, you know, games that take 3-5 hours and have some complexity. Also, the new D&D wargame, Conquest of Nerath, is popular. Its a simplified wargame.

I do see SVC's point on the A&A version of F&E. Cardboard counters don't sell well to today's gamers. They like plastic molded things, and custom die cuts, the things that drive costs up unless you are doing an enormous print run. Fantasy Flight Games and Wizards of the Coast are really pushing this expectation. Open up Twilight Imperium an you have tons of cool plastic ships. Descent with all the plastic figures of monsters and heroes. It looks great. for me, game play is way more important, but in today's market if a game doesn't have doohickies it is harder to sell. I mean, does the game get more fun because you have a plastic space ship rather than a cardboard counter? The game plays no different, but "look and feel" is a selling point.

I don't mind counters, but Joe Schmoe from Idaho wants little minis. My problem with them is that my cat chews them.

Anyways, that's my rant. Eric... out!


Last edited by ericphillips on Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Sweeper
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 26 Dec 2006
Posts: 183
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as the Fighters go in F&E, I like them. They're the Strategic Naval equivalent of Hand Grenades. You throw them into the fight, they go BOOM and the other fleet has destroyed or damaged ships. They can provide up to 18 points of COMPOT padding, (more, in some cases), against regular damage which can mean the the difference between a crippled ship and a destroyed one. They are usually replaced for free and certain empires carry a lot of them.

I think the few extra steps taken to use them is very much worth the effort.
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SFU_FEAR
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Joined: 28 Jun 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can never have too much cardboard.

Hello! My name is Mike and I am addicted to cardboard!
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madpax
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 31 May 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to say that I support Eric point of view. Worse, today's games are usually simple to play. For example, about space battles, I began with SFB (some 23 years ago, when it was published in ziplock) and it was OK. I followed it many years then let it down. I tried FC three years ago but to no avail, as I didn't found a serious opponent. Now I play Starmada (mainly with SFU ships) as it suits my level of complexity/time play/big battle parameters.
Looking at F&E material, well, the maps and counters are not really cool and enticing to play (I suppose you need to be a geek to play it this way today Very Happy ). But it would be worth the effort if the play is smooth and a game turn doesn't take forever to be completed.

Marc
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kinshi
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 09 Apr 2011
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Location: Port Orchard, WA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The bane of the SFU has been rule added for the sake of having rules.

That is, adding in game mechanics that increase the amount of complexity while not significantly adding to the enjoyment of the game, and that create the side-effect of increased overhead in the form of rules arbitration and record keeping.

For instance, adding a system into F & E simply because it exists in SFB (examples of that would be maulers, and SFGs). These may be something interesting on a tactical level, but at a strategic level they bring little to the game.

Not using those rules does not 'dumb' the game down, its simply recognizing there are diminishing returns with each new layer of complexity added (the amount of subsequent fun, shrinks as more rules get added due to the added overhead of record keeping and arbitration).

This is where I give major kudos to FC because in SFB, I had to use an SSD, an EA form, a seeking weapon tracking form, and some other misc forms and FC condensed that down into a single ship card (the concept of the power track, and putting tracks for plasma damage instead of wasting space with firing tables is great)

That being said, F & E really does NOT need many if its rules stripped out and simplified, it needs a similar type of record keeping innovation to reduce the paperwork.
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madpax
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 31 May 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How combat is resolved between two fleets?

Marc
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Scoutdad
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Joined: 09 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

madpax wrote:
How combat is resolved between two fleets?

Marc


Simplistic version:
Each unit in the game has a combat potential )ComPot) value printed in the lower left of the counter. Usually it's around 4 for frigates, 5 for destroyers, 8 for heavy cruisers, 12 for dreadnoughts, etc. Each unit also has a Command Rating - typically 10 for DNs, 9 for BC/CC, 8 for CA, etc.

Each player secretly and simultaneously creates a battle line by selecting his flagship and as many other units as he wants (up to the command rating of the flagship). There are a few rules that can add units.. free scouts, Admirals, battlegroups, command points, etc. - but basically that's it.

Total your ComPot and then each player selects a BIR from 1 to 4 (Battle Intensity Rating - to reflect how "hard" he wants to push the combat". Higher numbers are more intense affairs.) Total both BIRs, add/subtract any modifiers and both players roll a d6 and add it to their totals.

The final number is compared to the Combat Results Chart to determine the percentage of damage generated. Multiply your ComPot by that number (as high as 50%) to determine the damge done to your opponent while he does the same for you.

Damage is then applied by crippling / killing the units on the battle line on a 1:1 ratio of damage to ComPot. i.e., a CA can be crippled to resolve 8 points of damage (8 is it's ComPot value). This is accomplished by turning the counter over. The back side has a large stripe across the middle to indicate crippled status.) Crippled units typically have a ComPot value 50% of the uncrippled status, so the crippled CA could then be killed to resolve a further 4 points of damage... and so on.

Of course, there are other rules for damage resolution such as attrition units, directed damage, formation bonus, etc; but this is the very siplified version of F&E combat resolution.
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ericphillips
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simple, yes. I like it. It works, and its not difficult. But to more general board gamers, math is bad, even on that level. A simpler version would need to somehow pare down that math, even though it is easy. Just the nature of the target of a simpler version of the game.
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madpax
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 31 May 2009
Posts: 49
Location: France

PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Eric, math is bad. I like non-math non CRT combat resolution. For example, look at what Games Workshop did. I only play one game from this company and combat is resolved easily, without complicated math (roll a number of dice according to your combat value) and without CRT (eah die equal to or superior to a value inflict a hit, reroll for save using the same way, more or less). You just have to count hit then save and that's it.
Of course, that's just a general opinion, and maybe this is easier done than said. Smile

Marc
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