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What is Borders of Madness?
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kinshi
Lieutenant JG


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

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I keep seeing the words' Don't understand' yet its been explained multiple times in this thread. SVC seems to get it (he might not see it in the same light as I do, but I can tell he does actually 'get' the concern unlike some of the posters here.

To me anyway, BoM seems to fly in the face of the design intent of FC, which was to appeal to a more causal audience, and that its intent is to NOT be a gateway into playing SFB, or into making FC have as many fiddly bits as SFB.

It it really so hard to understand that one can be happy with the game play and rules as it stands? That one feels no need for more rules, and that one can be greatly concerned that other players may NOT understand that at all (or even care) and will try and force their more complicated play on the casual players, and drive them away like so many other ex-SFB players who faced the same thing?

What is hard to understand about that?
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Savedfromwhat
Commander


Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 639

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 4:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 'Don't understand' is in reference to the 'I don't want to it so no one should have it attitude' that is being displayed. It is not in reference to understanding the fear people have about porting over rules from SFB causing mass hysteria.

Quote:
making FC have as many fiddly bits as SFB.


See what you did there was create a straw man, and then beat him up.

Do you even have someone in your circle of friends that wants this product? Do you game with someone so overbearing that he will scare away the other players? Do you really think ADB releasing more material for a game you love is going to hurt it?

Honestly an influx of players from SFB would be a nice thing. YAY more opponents...

I don't assume it is going to be great for the game, I also don't assume it will spell out its demise. Mostly because of what they say about people who assume... Anyway why don't we just let Steven Cole decide if this product (that is barely in development and isn't even on the schedule mind you) is going to be released.

/sarcasm on| If you really want to get folks riled up lets start debating if Drougues should be added to BOM in a future captains log. /sarcasm off|
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storeylf
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Joined: 24 Jul 2008
Posts: 1843

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alex Knight wrote:
They haven't asked for [...] Enveloping Plasma, [...]


Gotta laugh at that one, some that might be classed as 'they' have asked for EPT quite loudly, and not just as BoM, but as a base rule in FC.

Quote:
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



Same with fighters - only some ships have them, or maulers - just a weapon system. Or SFG, that is just a weapon system. The gazillion drone types/racks are only more complex rules that come across as just about a weapon system.


I have to say I used to hate the idea of BoM. Now I'm pretty neutral about it. I'm almost certainly not going to use anything about drone types. My regular opponent is very keen on carriers whilst I'm not, but so long as there is a direct fire seeker option then I'll go with them. Maulers I currently dislike, just due to the fire arc/turning rules that need to be fudged for them. If they can change that I'll be ok with them.

I still don't think BoM will ever turn up, and it will just be a euphemism for playtest rules that will then turn up in the base game. Not necessarily because that is the intent, but because that is just the way I think it will go. That is my main concern.
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Kang
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Joined: 23 Sep 2007
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Location: Devon, UK

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 9:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

storeylf wrote:
Maulers I currently dislike, just due to the fire arc/turning rules that need to be fudged for them. If they can change that I'll be ok with them.


I have always considered the Mauler arcs to be unnecessarily narrow.

Unnecessarily, because what they are supposed to be simulating is that the entire ship has to be pointed at the target - *but*, when using a 60-degree facing system as we do in these games, the actual heading of the ship could be anywhere between 30 degrees left and 30 degrees right. Therefore the ship could be pointed anywhere in a 60-degree arc forwards, without being on a different heading.

Also, there will be 'blind-spot' hexes near the ship within which a target cannot be engaged, which is unrealistic too.

The 30-degree fire arc for Maulers is therefore, in my opinion, too narrow, in fact unrealistically so - it should really be 60 degrees wide if it's simulating the range of possible directions in which the ship could be pointing.

The 'correct' fire arc would be a 60-degree cone in front of the ship, and would simply include any and every hex from which the Mauler's #1 Shield could be hit, out to the Mauler's maximum range, which I seem to recall was about 15 hexes or so.

There would therefore be no need for fudging, turning declarations to obtain a skewed firing arc, whatever, if the Mauler firing arc was 60 degrees instead of 30.

This would be how to bring Mauler firing arcs into FC without fudging or complexity. Simply make the firing arc bigger. "It's not the same as in SFB!!" No, and it doesn't need to be either. Time for a clean start?

Sideslipping in the SFU was introduced in order to reduce the oddities of playing with a 60-degree facing system. I think that using a 60-degree Mauler firing arc would solve the Mauler problems in a similar way.

PS. I would love to see the Terminator Mauler in FC, even though it would only ever be in BoM.
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Capt Jack
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Joined: 12 Mar 2011
Posts: 102
Location: England U.K

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I dislike BOM because, I fear that even as an optional set/addition rules etc there will be slippage. what I mean is more rules will come into the FC game.

I like FC because it is no where near as complex as SFB (and even with speed reading I do not have to devote a year to reading the rules and another five to understand them. Shocked )

I can see the use for SFB (in times of civil unrest, the rule book could make a handy club to restore order or defend your person) Razz Laughing
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kirbykibble
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 07 Jun 2011
Posts: 82
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i feel the BoM should be added
i would like to see stuff like official game cards for maulers
and maulers for the andromedans
also, other new stuff never seen before
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mjwest
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 3478
Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Specific rules changes for specific rules (whether BoM or not) should not be discussed in this topic, but rather placed in a new, appropriate topic. That said ...
Kang wrote:
I have always considered the Mauler arcs to be unnecessarily narrow.

Do know that this point will be pressed when the time is right. There are no guarantees for success (of course), but this concern and idea will not be forgotten.
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Alex Knight
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Joined: 06 Jun 2008
Posts: 57
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 3:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

storeylf wrote:
Gotta laugh at that one, some that might be classed as 'they' have asked for EPT quite loudly, and not just as BoM, but as a base rule in FC.


To be fair, the "they" I was referring to was my friends that formerly played SFB.
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storeylf
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Joined: 24 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kinshi wrote:

To me anyway, BoM seems to fly in the face of the design intent of FC, which was to appeal to a more causal audience, and that its intent is to NOT be a gateway into playing SFB, or into making FC have as many fiddly bits as SFB.



quotes from this very website:
Quote:
Thousands of new players will embrace Federation Commander and some of them will join and strengthen existing Star Fleet Battles groups.


Quote:
anyone who finds Federation Commander to be less than challenging can move into the existing Star Fleet Battles product line quite easily. So, we don't need to turn Federation Commander into another Star Fleet Battles. We have designed Federation Commander to stay at the complexity level it starts at.


So it could be argued that FC was seen as a form of gateway to SFB. But it was also stated that FC would not add more complexity (fiddly bit?).
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Scoutdad
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Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4463
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Inserting my two Quatloos worth into the fray:

Battlegroup Murfreesboro as a whole, is looking forward to BoM.
Will we use it in every session?
No. Most likely, we will use the BoM items in a single session every couple of months, but we'd like to have the opportunity to use them when we ALL! agree.
Will we use BoM to speed SFB play?
Yes. We currently play SFB once (maybe twice) a year due to time constraints. If we have a BoM treatment of many of hte SFB rules, we'll use those to play a Fed/SFB hybrid.

Will BoM frature the player base?
Possibly.
Will it bring SFB players to Fed Comm?
Maybe.

I seem to recall similar discussions amongst the SFB players back in '04 when Fed Comm was in development nad was being touted as a "stream-lined version of SFB". Many of the Star Fleet Battles players went all Doom 'n Goom on us. Certain in their knowledge that the release of FC would fracture an already dwindling player base and completely kill both games.
Fortunately for us, SVC chose to follow his own marketing strategies (as he will with BoM) and produce Federation Commander. The result was a boost in revenue to ADB and a resurgence in SFB as FC became a the game industries equivalent of a "gateway drug". Many people played FC, got hooked on the SFU, wanted a greater challenge, and moved onto SFB (or now play both).

Will BoM ever be released?
I don't know. That will be SVC's call, since it's his money on the line. If it's released; we'll buy it, we'll play it from time-to-time, but we won't even discuss it during demos and teaching sessions. If it's never sold, we'll just keep photocopying the BoM sections from each CL and placing the rules in our FC rulebooks for use during specified, in-house gaming sessions.
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leathernsteel
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Joined: 07 Jun 2011
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Location: Orlando, FL

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I first heard about BOM during a Federation Commander gaming session at my local game shop. These guys REFUSE to play Star Fleet Battles, but were very enthusiastic about BOM. I thought it was a very cool idea too. Here is an example of why I would like to have it:

If I want to run a carrier group battle, of coarse I can pull out my SFB stuff and do it, but it will likely be a solitaire game. If carriers are made possible through BOM, then I can have human opponents and run the whole battle in a fraction of the time.

The idea of "if the rule book or module is printed, we must use it", does not sound logical. SFB has many rulebooks and modules and players can pick and choose amongst those at will. Same thing with the Fed Com stuff that has come out so far. If I don't believe (hypothetical example) that the Andro's should be in Fed Commander, I simply don't buy "War and Peace". But those folks who do like it, at least have an option to get it.

The concept of, "if I don't like it, nobody can", is a buzz kill in my book.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some of the funniest letters I get from players is "Make it a rule that my opponents have to use my favorite rule."

Seriously, guys, a lot of the fear is unfounded or mis-founded or just losted.

Nobody EVER said BoM would add complexity or fiddly bits to FC.

At most, it will add some new unit types (carriers, maulers, SFGs, scouts) non of which would be any different from adding Andromedans.

A lot of SFB players want that (so they can do their larger SFB campaign battles in a third as much time) but a lot of FC players want BoM so they can have more toys.

Most of the people I have seen saying they don't want BoM does have given a definition of what they think BoM is that is just ... wrong, often humorously wrong... but some of the concerns are real enough and will be addressed if/when BoM is done.

I can tell who does and does not have a professional military background by who wants "direct fire drones". Certainly, that makes for simpler rules. It also so totally changes the tactics that it's not two games but two universes. Seeking weapons influence enemy maneuvers. Direct fire weapons do not. It's that complex and that simple.

As I said before, the main reason there is no BoM so far is that I have more ideas than time, and what time FC gets has, so far, not be spent on BoM because there were other things to do first. Also, the original plan for BoM was to do it like Briefing #2 and THAT product turned into a fiasco (being several times as much work as it was budgeted for).

One option for BoM was to do it in pieces, say, do 7 scouts in booster 89 first (so everybody has one) but that gets a little touchy on the number of empires. Assuming you count on the existing fed SC, seven more gives a CWS to the Klingons, Roms, Kzintis, Gorns, Tholians, Lyrans, and Hydrans, and the other empires are SOL for the time being.

Just thinking out loud on a day when I have other things to think about.
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storeylf
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:

I can tell who does and does not have a professional military background by who wants "direct fire drones". Certainly, that makes for simpler rules. It also so totally changes the tactics that it's not two games but two universes. Seeking weapons influence enemy maneuvers. Direct fire weapons do not. It's that complex and that simple.


What has professional military background got to do with anything? This is a'casual' game based on a TV show. If I wanted a detailed military simulation I'd not be playing FedCom. I have no shortage of games that do far better military simulation. Wanting direct fire drones has absolutely nothing to do with military knowledge or back ground, one could be heavily into military minutae or a serving officer and still want a simple fast playing game. I've known military personnel who like warhammer, hardly the pinnacle of military realism and tactics, but I assumed that real war gives all the realism that they could want, and in their free time they want fun not nitty gritty detail.

Direct fire weapons most assuredly do influence enemy manouvers. More so than drones. Drones can be dealt with by other systems, or an accel for 1 impulse to slip around. The differences between your own direct fire stuff and the enemies direct fire stuff will, however, dictate nearly all of your and the enemies manouvering all game. I'll bet most klingon manouvering is heavily influenced by those overloaded photons you are packing, far more than any drones. Just as it will be affected by the lack of them during a rearm turn. Just as you will be manouvering to keep a badly damaged shield from being constantly hit by those disrupters.

As to 2 games with totally different tactics, we already have that don't we. The removal of ship maintance cost has already altered tactics due to the increase in spare power. The lack of Wild weasals has altered tactics. The change in the impulse system has altered tactics. The change to a non secret system has altered tactics, the change to all 'reserve' power has altered tactics. Tactics wise FedCom is already so different to SFB to be another universe. Direct fire drones continue the simplification and reduction on counter clutter/bookkeeping, and with all other such changes will introduce tactics that are somewhat different to SFB. But having played some playtest carrier games already I can also assure you that direct fire drones/plasma has plenty of affect on manouvering - you really don't want to get hit by a large direct fire drone/plasma volley.


Last edited by storeylf on Tue Aug 16, 2011 7:13 pm; edited 9 times in total
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storeylf
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:


One option for BoM was to do it in pieces, say, do 7 scouts in booster 89 first (so everybody has one) but that gets a little touchy on the number of empires. Assuming you count on the existing fed SC, seven more gives a CWS to the Klingons, Roms, Kzintis, Gorns, Tholians, Lyrans, and Hydrans, and the other empires are SOL for the time being.


What about attack style products instead?

You will need to put in the rules for whatever bit you are doing, which is more like an attack product. You get 16? ships in an attack product, which is closer to what you need - 1 per empire and a couple of spare for a couple of important variants. And maybe some scenarios based on the new 'concept'. Then the counters for the new ships. Definately feels like an attack product rather than a booster. Boosters cover the extra variants, and duplicates of the main ones in the attack product.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our games are successful BECAUSE they are based on our professional military backgrounds. Seeking weapons do different things than direct fire weapons, influence things different ways, and to only have one type is producing ... not a good game. The best games ARE based on precise military simulations. Otherwise we might as well just play poker instead.

As for an attack product, sure, it's a possiblity, BUT, you have some considerable issues to overcome. One is that it costs a lot more to produce. Another is that we only do one of those a year, and "politically" it could be bad to "use up the one shot per year" on BoM. Not impossible, but something that has to be carefully weighed.
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