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What is Borders of Madness?
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To expand on Lee's answer, originally, when Federation Commander first came out, there was a lot of discussion on details that were in SFB but that are not present in Federation Commander. Steve maintained that wanting to add that stuff into Federation Commander was bordering on madness. The name kinda stuck after that. Then, to actually cement it in place, some of us convinced Steve to include a "Borders of Madness" section as a regular part of Captain's Log.
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DirkSJ
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mjwest wrote:
So, fundamentally, doing Borders of Madness has no direct bearing on doing a proper Attack style product (that you likely want), but rather is competition for a Briefing style product you probably don't care about.

Interesting. Ok then the only potential downsides are limited sales (sliver of sliver) and splintering play groups. Those seem like worse downsides than missed FC product opportunities though.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DirkSJ wrote:
mjwest wrote:
So, fundamentally, doing Borders of Madness has no direct bearing on doing a proper Attack style product (that you likely want), but rather is competition for a Briefing style product you probably don't care about.

Interesting. Ok then the only potential downsides are limited sales (sliver of sliver) and splintering play groups. Those seem like worse downsides than missed FC product opportunities though.

Yes, those are real risks that Steve has to weight and consider. Personally, I don't think the sales part will be that bad. (I think there are enough people who will buy it.) The potential fracture to the fandom, however, is a real threat, and something Steve is carefully considering.
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Dal Downing
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, some people keep harping BoM should never see the light of day because it will alienate the fan base. True, but by not doing it, the exact same thing will happen as well. For the last several years I have enthusiastically bought Fed Com stuff because the things I have wanted to see, I kept being told would be BoM Material. I kept my mouth shut about when BoM would come out and pitched in when or where I could to get the base game finished because it was the fastest way to see official rules for the things I want to do.

Now with the release of War and Peace the Alpha Sector is pretty much complete. There are still 3 more Empires that could be published as a Ancient Empires type product. (Carnavons, Paravians, and Jindarians) And I would gladly look forward to adding them. But now reading this thread I find out there may not be a BoM? This has started me wondering where are my Minefields, Minesweepers, Fighter Hanger Bays, Gunboats, Electronic Warfare Platforms, and Carrier Units? When will I see realistic Fighter Rules that will function on a Open Map as well as a closed one? When will I be able to run Cavalry Charge, or Pleads Turkey Shoot?

Many times I could have started making a Grade "A" pain of myself harping. Well BoM could do this or, BoM could do that or, this is something I am eagerly looking forward to seeing in BoM... I didn't do that and I am not going to start doing it here now because we are all mature and intelligent people here so why should I have to sit back and keep poking and prodding for a product that the concept was already established for. If there is not a BoM will I take my ball so to speak and go home? Not a first I am too much of a Star Fleet Universe fan just to flush it after 30 years. but will I start shifting my interest to other games and systems in a attempt to get what I really want to play with? That answers is almost assuredly a yes.

Is this going to be a easy decision for SVC? No, but I had to make sure I expressed a counter point because I am sure I am not the only one that feels this way.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The title is actually a play on my favorite Lovecraft novel

THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS

which I enjoyed reading in college. it's actually the only lovecraft novel I have read, although I have about 50 of them on Leanna's kindle. (Which I only get access to when there is not a new cat-detective book in the offing.)

Will doing BoM drive people away? Maybe some, not sure.

Will NOT going BoM drive people away? Probably more than the other option.

Will it fracture playing groups? Perhaps, but I'm not sure it will fracture them any more than not doing BoM and having players do BoM all by themselves.

Will BoM be a "laminated card product" taking up a production slot or just a briefing type product? Dunno. Maybe, maybe not. No real decision has been made. And there is no iron-clad law that we can only do one product a year with laminated cards, not with the new system that makes printing fewer of them practicable.

Biggest obstacle to doing BoM? I'm busy doing too many things. Running the company takes half of my time, and I have Marines, F&E, and FC to do, plus Starmada and ACTA and 2500 stuff to manage, plus I want to do more paperback books. And by the way, Leanna wants more hubby time and wants my hours cut back from 80 to 60 per week.
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leathernsteel
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 2:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:
Will doing BoM drive people away? Maybe some, not sure.

Will NOT going BoM drive people away? Probably more than the other option.

Will it fracture playing groups? Perhaps, but I'm not sure it will fracture them any more than not doing BoM and having players do BoM all by themselves.
What products ADB does or does NOT do has no impact on who I will game with. I like all the ADB games I've played so far, and I really don't care who I'm playing 'em with or how we choose to play 'em. You can say I'm mostly neutral on this matter.
Steve Cole wrote:
Will BoM be a "laminated card product" taking up a production slot or just a briefing type product? Dunno. Maybe, maybe not. No real decision has been made. And there is no iron-clad law that we can only do one product a year with laminated cards, not with the new system that makes printing fewer of them practicable.
I would say either do it, or don't do it. If you do it, make it another high quality ADB product, otherwise, I don't think it would be worth getting.
Steve Cole wrote:
Biggest obstacle to doing BoM? I'm busy doing too many things. Running the company takes half of my time, and I have Marines, F&E, and FC to do, plus Starmada and ACTA and 2500 stuff to manage, plus I want to do more paperback books. And by the way, Leanna wants more hubby time and wants my hours cut back from 80 to 60 per week.
If I were in charge of energy allocation in this matter, I would put 90% of all warp engine power into Starfleet Marines Assault. Some of the remaining warp power and the impulse engines into the novels (these things rule, folks!). And finally divide the rest up for the other misc. projects. I would no doubt ensure that there was enough left over power to recharge the batteries, which would probably have to cut the work hours from 80 down to about 55 per week(sort of like slowing down in order to overload some photons).
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Alex Knight
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2011 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:
The title is actually a play on my favorite Lovecraft novel

THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS


Andromedans suddenly make more sense... Eldritch horrors from beyond the galaxy...

That sidetrek aside, I know my group would love to have BoM being old school SFB players who like the speed of Fed Com. The ability to use some of the old ships, such as the Maulers and the Carriers is what they are looking forward to the most.
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kinshi
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2011 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

THis is an eklmet that confuses me a bit in the discussion fo BoM


Quote:
old school SFB players who like the speed of Fed Com.


Because I see that but I also see claims that SFB'ers go ape over accepting FC changes within SFB itself, yet they are willing to make changes to FC to make it more SFB-like.

To be that seems like a paradox (at face value) or is there also a split between SFB players..those who are willing to change the game and those will take no change at all.



My resistance to adding BoM to FC is simple..the mounting complexity of SFB is was the #i reason why I and every single other person I have ever played SFB with stopped playing. That combined with running into too many people who simply would not relax the rules at all..it was all the rules or none of the rules.

The end result..none of us playing at all.

My opinion is also tempered by the fact my very first FC group is also very adamant about not wanting to even touch SFB ever again or approaching that level of complexity.

All I know is someone rolling in wanting to do BoM will get a collective groan from the group. In fact one of the new players coined the term 'Federation Coma' for how she perceived the game play to move (fortunately I was able to show her scenarios which she took to quite well..it was the basic tactical dueling that bored her as it seemed to have no point other than to show off one's rules knowledge).

Anyway its take a LONG time to piece this group together, and layering on more rules will make them want to stay home and I REALLY want to play tabletop instead of online. I spose if BoM does come out we will have to simply say 'no' but I know that would suck for the person wanting to play FC but finds there is no other group but ours in the area.

Anyway..I do think its SFB that needs to change, NOT FC. FC's primary strength is its lightweight on rules compared to SFB and its turns can be processed a lot faster.

I think the recalcitrant SFBers are the ones who need to let loose and accept the changes and let SFB get streamlined some. They are already in love with the complexity, its easy for them to accept and SFB is already built to accommodate all these rules.

No reinventing of wheels necessary.
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Savedfromwhat
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 2:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This topic comes up a lot. Frankly I don't understand the reluctance people are showing to this product. It is a game, it has modules, this is not 1985. There is an internet and rules changes/additions will forever be a part of gaming, unless of course the game you play is dead and then the rules of course are set in stone.

If all of your playmates hate BOM and you hate BOM then don't use BOM, but why would you come online and talk about how it will ruin your gaming group if you already know by your own account that 'not a single one of my old sfb friends wants this product'. Most who has advocated against BOM have claimed that 'everyonethe they know hares new rules', if that is the case this product isn't for you or for them.
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terryoc
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Because I see that but I also see claims that SFB'ers go ape over accepting FC changes within SFB itself, yet they [SFB players] are willing to make changes to FC to make it more SFB-like.


(Stuff in bold added)

SFB players don't care what is or is not in FC. Few SFB players also play FC. The demand for BoM is coming from FC players. And not all of the stuff that will be in BoM is wanted by all players who want to see BoM. Some want, for example, ground bases for campaigns but don't want fighters. Ditto with other stuff like maulers or SFGs or whatever.
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semperatis
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BoM if it's ever published will only ever be OPTIONAL. These rules are only for those of us who would like to see some of the left out sections being re-written into FC format. I don't think that even then every rule would be used,rather we would probably just pick and chose the ones that were necessary to play the particular scenario that we were running at the time.
I personally don't see a problem with them,and I'll definately be buying them when they finally do appear. I like FC as it stands,but it would be nice to be able to add extra rules as and when required,I've no intention of going back to the hernia days of SFB. At the moment,I add in SFB rules when I play certain scenarios from way back,but the rules don't always dovetail in very well,hence the reason why I'm looking forward to BoM.
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mjwest
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 4:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kinshi wrote:
THis is an eklmet that confuses me a bit in the discussion fo BoM


Quote:
old school SFB players who like the speed of Fed Com.


Because I see that but I also see claims that SFB'ers go ape over accepting FC changes within SFB itself, yet they are willing to make changes to FC to make it more SFB-like.

To be that seems like a paradox (at face value) or is there also a split between SFB players..those who are willing to change the game and those will take no change at all.

The problem is that you are treating two completely independent sets of players as one. The SFB player who wants no hint of FC coming close to SFB is probably not the same SFB player who wants the ability to add some new wrinkles into the FC system.

They are separate players.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Random thoughts.

The problem with optional rules is that some players insist on using them while others insist on ignoring them, thus dividing the group. A little good will and the willingness to try something new and the willingness to play a simple version now and then is what makes things work.

Certainly, FC does not need the complexity of SFB. That does not mean that there are not FC players who want the capabilities of SFB.

I think a lot of people want carriers and some people want scouts, maulers, and Stasis generators. I don't see any reason that those could not be done without the complexity of SFB. I have avoided doing fighters, for example, until I can find a workable way to handle/avoid 635 drones in simultaneous flight. (WARNING: DO NOT START DISCUSSING POSSIBLE BOM DRONE RULES HERE. THEY HAVE THEIR OWN TOPICS.)

Few people understand what is BoM and what is FC stuff we just haven't done yet. Ground bases (which were done a few months ago) were always a future part of FC and never a part of BoM. I don't see why commando ships are not plain old FC. There are people out there who think that tugs are BoM (they aren't) and that battle pods will be added to BoM (maybe). Also remember that we do things in Captain's Log to let players drive them around the block, not to the camel's nose into the tent.

There are a lot of things in SFB that don't ever need to come into FC, such as crew quality, legendary officers, and 11 kinds of drone warheads. I left enveloping plasmas and wild weasels out of FC and have zero plans for them to come into BoM.

BoM is about adding capabilities, not complexity.

Like all things that are poorly defined, they are all things (or all fears) to all people. Everybody has their own idea of what BoM is, and you're all probably wrong, ergo, basing your theories of why you want/hate BoM based on bogus information.
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Kang
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For myself, yes I am sometimes afraid of FC being made into SFB, but I really do trust that that ain't gonna happen.

What I do like a lot about the BoM idea is that I'm looking forward to seeing how the various systems are implemented.

I love FC's game system. It is clean and elegant, and although I have been to blame for more than my fair share of rules clarification requests, most of which have ended up being incorporated into later rulebooks as 'starred' items, it is still simple.

The elegance of FC will be incorporated into BoM, I am sure, whatever form it takes. And I really am looking forward to seeing how it's going to work.

Consider the beauty of how the Andromedan systems have already been implemented, in 'War and Peace'. They had the potential of being really potent, or too weak. But the designers got the balance just right - and kept it elegant, playable and simple at the same time.

For myself, I may well not play many games incorporating BoM concepts. But for me, part of the pleasure of simulation gaming is seeing how the designer represents 'reality' using a set of cardboard pieces. And that's where the elegance comes in and that's what I'm looking forward to.
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Alex Knight
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kinshi wrote:
THis is an eklmet that confuses me a bit in the discussion fo BoM


Quote:
old school SFB players who like the speed of Fed Com.


Because I see that but I also see claims that SFB'ers go ape over accepting FC changes within SFB itself, yet they are willing to make changes to FC to make it more SFB-like.


Okay, you misinterpreted and selectively quoted me, so let me point out - I never said they want to change FC to be more SFB-like. They haven't asked for Wild Weasels, Enveloping Plasma, Positronic Flywheels, Energy Rebalancing due to damage (Though I don't think they used that in SFB themselves), ECM and ECCM nor have they asked for the umpteen bazillion drone types. I said they want access to some of the other ship types, but they would like to keep everything else that FC has intact.

(As an aside, I never understood the debate and hate on Scout Channels. Even the more complex rules came across to me as just another weapon system since only scouts had them.)
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