Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by Delbruck » Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:40 pm

Count de Monet: It is said that the people are revolting.
King Louis XVI: You said it! They stink on ice!

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by muz177 » Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:05 pm

It appears there were 2 choices available - either abandon the concept of v2 (as it is uneconomic to print in hard-copy and there may be copyright or commercial contraints for other printing options) and retain v1 until all stock was sold; or go electronic.

If the players of the game are not willing to financially contribute to a commercial product, then they should not complain if the commercial realities force a product in a certain direction. Of course, they can pursue an alternative product, where available. But it takes considerable time, effort and cost to develop anything.

I applaud Slitherine and the drivers behind the product for having a go - the easy alternative was to do nothing.

Eight pages of electronic abuse may convince them that this was a very 'courageous' product decision. Unfortunately the Ancients clientbase are, as a broad generalisation, ageing significantly, slow to adapt to change (like most people), and comfortable with established positions (unless involving a change to what LH can do, when more change the better).

The only way I see the game surviving is to somehow attract new players - either because of the competitions, because of a renewed interest in ancient history, or some other means. Perhaps a new modern format of rules may assist in that, perhaps not. One way or another though, something has to be done, as the number of players continues to decline.

Muz (owner of an iPad)

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by Delbruck » Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:24 pm

muz177 wrote:It appears there were 2 choices available - either abandon the concept of v2 (as it is uneconomic to print in hard-copy and there may be copyright or commercial contraints for other printing options) and retain v1 until all stock was sold; or go electronic.

If the players of the game are not willing to financially contribute to a commercial product, then they should not complain if the commercial realities force a product in a certain direction. Of course, they can pursue an alternative product, where available. But it takes considerable time, effort and cost to develop anything.

I applaud Slitherine and the drivers behind the product for having a go - the easy alternative was to do nothing.

Eight pages of electronic abuse may convince them that this was a very 'courageous' product decision. Unfortunately the Ancients clientbase are, as a broad generalisation, ageing significantly, slow to adapt to change (like most people), and comfortable with established positions (unless involving a change to what LH can do, when more change the better).

The only way I see the game surviving is to somehow attract new players - either because of the competitions, because of a renewed interest in ancient history, or some other means. Perhaps a new modern format of rules may assist in that, perhaps not. One way or another though, something has to be done, as the number of players continues to decline.

Muz (owner of an iPad)
(1) I don't think the comments have been abusive.
(2) Requesting a printable version is not an unreasonable request.
(3) Given the need to paint hundreds of miniatures, I doubt if the hobby is ever going to attract a huge young "digital" following. As an alternative, games like Total War are a lot easier.
(4) No one is forcing anyone to anything. People who write wargame rules do it for love of the hobby, not to make a lot of money. If the intent is to make a lot of money I think someone is in the wrong business. The trend recently has been to produce very expensive rules books. I think most wargamers would be just as happy with a cheaper more basic book. If a set of rules is best delivered digitally, then I think a printable version is a requirment.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by BillMc » Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:49 pm

It really hurts when the owners of a rule set you have grown to like turn into a bunch of raving lunatics. Such a stupid decision.

Would it be good to have a digital version? Yes! I would most likely get the app for my iphone, kindle, or whatever.

Should the new rules version be only digital? Of course not! What kind of idiot makes that decision.

A host of issues has already been discussed, so I will add just two:

1. The need for a "gold standard" in the rule set that everyone knows. If the version control for the rules lives only in the digital world and changes can get pushed at undetermined intervals, this will be a major issue. There is nothing worse than showing up at an event (tournament, local group, demo, etc) having prepped on one set of rules only to find out they are different. There are a host of war stories where players run into different rule interpretations. We cant even get all players to read the online (and printable) FAQ and Erratas - do you really think going pure digital is going to improve that situation?

2. I have always enjoyed looking forward to buying the latest printed version of the rules or lists of games I play or am interested in. I like reading through and highlighting key areas. I can loan copies to potential new players (and if they dont return I can get a new copy). I can read it on the airplane on the runway before and during takeoff. I dont have to worry if I dont have a wireless connection or dont have 3G service, to ready through the rules when I go on a trip or to a con or a friends house. It also supports the hobby at local shops, through event dealers, at swap meets and flea markets, etc (this is no small thing).

I am really dissapointed.

Bill

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by madaxeman » Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:03 pm

muz177 wrote:It appears there were 2 choices available - either abandon the concept of v2 (as it is uneconomic to print in hard-copy and there may be copyright or commercial contraints for other printing options) and retain v1 until all stock was sold; or go electronic.
How about issuing update sheet(s) for owners of hard-copy V1, but still make all future "full" editions ipad/tablet/kindle only - and include some groovy enhanced features that the ipad can support? Like, imagine if the army lists were on ipad/pc, but included a drag-and-drop army list builder, links to relevant websites, a way to add your own notes and to share lists with friends and stuff like that?

Then the reason to "upgrade" is that the new "electronic" version is technically a better product which is inherently worth paying for, and the pool of opponents isn't as likely to drop off a cliff either as current players can carry on with a hard copy format as long as they want ... although it would get progressively more messy as more updates got added, so this would create an eventual upgrade pressure anyway.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by Delbruck » Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:20 pm

madaxeman wrote:
muz177 wrote:It appears there were 2 choices available - either abandon the concept of v2 (as it is uneconomic to print in hard-copy and there may be copyright or commercial contraints for other printing options) and retain v1 until all stock was sold; or go electronic.
How about issuing update sheet(s) for owners of hard-copy V1, but still make all future "full" editions ipad/tablet/kindle only - and include some groovy enhanced features that the ipad can support? Like, imagine if the army lists were on ipad/pc, but included a drag-and-drop army list builder, links to relevant websites, a way to add your own notes and to share lists with friends and stuff like that?

Then the reason to "upgrade" is that the new "electronic" version is technically a better product which is inherently worth paying for, and the pool of opponents isn't as likely to drop off a cliff either as current players can carry on with a hard copy format as long as they want ... although it would get progressively more messy as more updates got added, so this would create an eventual upgrade pressure anyway.

-
Tim, this sounds like a really good suggestion :!:

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by dave_r » Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:41 pm

BillMc wrote:It really hurts when the owners of a rule set you have grown to like turn into a bunch of raving lunatics. Such a stupid decision.

Would it be good to have a digital version? Yes! I would most likely get the app for my iphone, kindle, or whatever.

Should the new rules version be only digital? Of course not! What kind of idiot makes that decision.

A host of issues has already been discussed, so I will add just two:

1. The need for a "gold standard" in the rule set that everyone knows. If the version control for the rules lives only in the digital world and changes can get pushed at undetermined intervals, this will be a major issue. There is nothing worse than showing up at an event (tournament, local group, demo, etc) having prepped on one set of rules only to find out they are different. There are a host of war stories where players run into different rule interpretations. We cant even get all players to read the online (and printable) FAQ and Erratas - do you really think going pure digital is going to improve that situation?

2. I have always enjoyed looking forward to buying the latest printed version of the rules or lists of games I play or am interested in. I like reading through and highlighting key areas. I can loan copies to potential new players (and if they dont return I can get a new copy). I can read it on the airplane on the runway before and during takeoff. I dont have to worry if I dont have a wireless connection or dont have 3G service, to ready through the rules when I go on a trip or to a con or a friends house. It also supports the hobby at local shops, through event dealers, at swap meets and flea markets, etc (this is no small thing).

I am really dissapointed.

Bill
I agree with much of the above, certainly in that I prefer an actual book rather than an e-book. I could cope with a digital copy if it was a pdf, but with the rules the way they are it sometimes takes several goes to find the correct place and the rules are often in multiple areas - with a book you just keep your finger on the page and then move to a different page. That's difficult on an e-book.

Also - there are competitions which run over the course of the year - The Northern Doubles and the US Gulf Coast thingy (sorry I haven't got the name correct) and these require that the rules are the same for the full year. Since the e-book has no version history that could be somewhat problematic. Ditto with list checking - if somebody sends a list in and the army list is updated in the meantime that's going to cause a whole raft of arguments such as "but it was legal when I submitted it six months ago to another competition".

I can see the reasons why we can't have a print run - seemingly Osprey aren't particularly enamoured with the whole thing (this is a personal opinion and in no way based on fact) so this is the best alternative.

BUT - can we get a pdf version as well? i.e. once I get the app I can also download a pdf or something I can print so I can take it with me and have version control?
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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by madaxeman » Sat Jul 14, 2012 4:00 pm

Delbruck wrote: Tim, this sounds like a really good suggestion :!:
Like all good ideas, I stole large chunks of it.. The guy who publishes Blitzkrieg Commander has an online army list builder tool that you get "basic" access to when you buy the rules, but you can also buy a years subscription for about a fiver giving you "enhanced" access, which is simply more options regarding how you build your army lists.

The lists are all included in the rules anyway, so with the online access you are not actually paying for anything more than "ease of use" - but I have paid for it a few times already, as its a neat toy that I think is worth paying for.

Some of the BKC family of rules (those Pete has sold out of) are also available on print on demand too...
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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by LeslieMitchell » Sat Jul 14, 2012 6:12 pm

well my smart phone last about 4hours-ish if I use it to read books, and since a tournament might be in a hall with out power, that's me without rules for 4 hours on a britcon Saturday (3x3.25 hour games)

:(

are well new phone or tablet for me, but then no rules :(

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by shadowdragon » Sat Jul 14, 2012 6:18 pm

Image

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by KiwiWarlord » Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:12 pm

Two things about the WRG rules, they were concise and cheap to produce.
Black & white with some diagrams.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by dave_r » Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:43 pm

Warlord wrote:Two things about the WRG rules, they were concise and cheap to produce.
Black & white with some diagrams.
Some more things:

- They belong in the '60's and '70's
- They were horrifically written
- They were full of ambiguities which the author wouldn't or couldn't clarify

The world moves on. Accept it, wargamers today won't stand for that sort of publishing again.
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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by Strategos69 » Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:22 pm

The problem with the army lists is that they were never a product someone would buy unless into FoG (and particularly tournaments). They provide no in depth information on the armies, how to paint them, collect them, their historical tactics, no historical scenarios. They can't be sold to someone into the hobby unless into FoG. They are very colourful and beautiful pieces, but just... lists. And indeed, too vague lists, not suitable for specific purposes but to have an approximate idea of an army. Thus I understand that they were not the most profitable product, specially when you have people that only want to recreate very specific spams of time.

Thus I think that madeaxeman is right and the e-book has to offer something different than just a book. That would be wasting the capabilities of an application, the real future. For example, the army lists generators could come with the army lists applications, there might be systems of simulating the combat between two BG's, telling you the odds in certain situations. Add-ons some people would buy. Moreover, if you ever move tabletop into digital, you can add all the calculations that had to be taken away to simplify. You may move the miniatures on the tabletop but resolve combats with a computer aid (but that is too far on the future...).

If you want players you need two things:
- First, an easy to play with a few miniatures introduction set (there is none)
- Second, an easy to access rulebook that upgrades the former for players feeling they need more (there won't be anymore)

Without the first one it is a dream to reach the young electronically literate public who will never paint (or own) more than 50 miniatures nor read 150 pages of something that ressembles so much to a history class. Without the second, a printed hard copy, you will never get the experienced players. Indeed if the publishers don't provide a hard copy (I always liked the pre-orders system followed in boardgames) I wonder how long will it take to appear an "alternative copy" made within some club where they copy into a printable format the whole book and distribute it among their members so that they can use the same rule system.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by wildone » Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:29 pm

How about issuing update sheet(s) for owners of hard-copy V1, but still make all future "full" editions ipad/tablet/kindle only - and include some groovy enhanced features that the ipad can support? Like, imagine if the army lists were on ipad/pc, but included a drag-and-drop army list builder, links to relevant websites, a way to add your own notes and to share lists with friends and stuff like that?

Then the reason to "upgrade" is that the new "electronic" version is technically a better product which is inherently worth paying for, and the pool of opponents isn't as likely to drop off a cliff either as current players can carry on with a hard copy format as long as they want ... although it would get progressively more messy as more updates got added, so this would create an eventual upgrade pressure anyway.
This would work. As the use of Ipads, E-readers and tablets* increase most of us will eventually get one but for those of us who haven't yet the printable update sheets will allow us to to amend our hard back rules and continue gaming.

* I remember when tablets were what the doctor prescribed. I must be getting oldish.

regards
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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by stenic » Sun Jul 15, 2012 2:08 am

muz177 wrote:If the players of the game are not willing to financially contribute to a commercial product, then they should not complain if the commercial realities force a product in a certain direction. Of course, they can pursue an alternative product, where available. But it takes considerable time, effort and cost to develop anything.
Excuse me? I have 8 books of lists and a set of rules I paid nigh on £100 for in total. Don't tell me I did not willingly contribute. I reserve the right to complain if some years later the company make my stuff obsolete.
muz177 wrote:I applaud Slitherine and the drivers behind the product for having a go - the easy alternative was to do nothing.
It's not our fault too many books were printed and left on the shelves. Know your market! (as per now even, so many likely to drop the game). This may be the future, but they are doing this to protect themselves from loss.

The clear implication is with a printable pdf we'll all give each other copies.... Newsflash: Some of us have morals. My Naval Thunder rules pdf are mine and have not been passed around, my opponent bought his own.
muz177 wrote:The only way I see the game surviving is to somehow attract new players - either because of the competitions, because of a renewed interest in ancient history, or some other means. Perhaps a new modern format of rules may assist in that, perhaps not. One way or another though, something has to be done, as the number of players continues to decline.
And they will decline quicker if I can't lend a mate my rules for him to read over the weekend to see if he wants to buy a copy. And that is another key point, our group often borrow rules to read over for the following week and then if they decide they want to play more will buy there own copy.... but lending out my iPad (if I even had one)? No chance.

It would be interesting to do the maths... All regular v1 players would likely have bought a v2 book, some none FOG rules junkies would have bought a v2 book, some non FOG players may even have been tempted just to see. But it would appear the lack of hardcopy will seriously cut down the interest of current players.

One final thought... most people with an iPad or kindle type thing really don't give a monkey's about wargaming... so just who is the target market?

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by mbsparta » Sun Jul 15, 2012 2:46 am

I have an i-pad

But I want a book like V1 for wargaming. Not a printable downloading thing nor do I want an Ap ... I want a book.
I bought FoG, FoG-R, all the army lists and Fog-N (and I don't even own a Napoleonic figure) ... to support them so when the time came for a V2 they would print another book.

I don't want a living document for my wargaming rules. I want a rulebook. I don't want the army lists to change everytime some power-gamer in a UK tournament finds a problem with them. I want lists that refelct the historical makeup of that army, and our lists have been all-in-all very well written.

We game with model soldiers with table top terrain. We don't download and print out miniatures. We use dice. Its a hobby not a game. We buy books about Roman history, bottles of paint, metal or plastic miniatures, spend hours upon hours painting them. And no matter how they come out, we are proud of them. I want a rulebook. This is not rocket science. Smart phones may be the future for many things. Go play angry birds on it. A basic concept of Field of Glory was the rulebook and presentation. They have let us down.

Mike B

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by philqw78 » Sun Jul 15, 2012 7:44 am

mbsparta wrote:I don't want a living document for my wargaming rules. I want a rulebook. I don't want the army lists to change everytime some power-gamer in a UK tournament finds a problem with them. I want lists that refelct the historical makeup of that army, and our lists have been all-in-all very well written.

We game with model soldiers with table top terrain. We don't download and print out miniatures. We use dice. Its a hobby not a game. We buy books about Roman history, bottles of paint, metal or plastic miniatures, spend hours upon hours painting them. And no matter how they come out, we are proud of them. I want a rulebook. This is not rocket science.
Mike B
I wholeheartedly agree with this

Even though we will soon be able to print miniatures it will be much the same. When it happens we will spend hours modelling and posing the prints so that each is unique instead of hours painting and glueing.
phil
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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by LeslieMitchell » Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:00 am

mbsparta wrote:I don't want a living document for my wargaming rules. I want a rulebook. I don't want the army lists to change everytime some power-gamer in a UK tournament finds a problem with them. I want lists that refelct the historical makeup of that army, and our lists have been all-in-all very well written.

We game with model soldiers with table top terrain. We don't download and print out miniatures. We use dice. Its a hobby not a game. We buy books about Roman history, bottles of paint, metal or plastic miniatures, spend hours upon hours painting them. And no matter how they come out, we are proud of them. I want a rulebook. This is not rocket science. Smart phones may be the future for many things. Go play angry birds on it. A basic concept of Field of Glory was the rulebook and presentation. They have let us down.

Mike B
I agree, living rule books are the first stage to a dying set of rules in my experience.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by zocco » Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:06 am

I have to say I'm "impressed" by the V2 announcement :roll:

After all - for those of us not digital (including myself) Slithers is "allowing" us the privilege to purchase the most expensive set of wargame rules ever !

And you've got to hand it to them its not even for a new set merely a V2 version - which to be quite honest could have been put out as a set of amendments in a FREE (printable) pdf online - (the updates aren't exactly rocket science....) and this would have saved Slitherine money compared to releasing it in a full hardcopy version of V2 (that is if you believe the bit about them not making money on hardcopy anymore - eerr haven't they only recently released FOGN etc etc....).

Well there's always BBDBA ....... :D
Last edited by zocco on Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Field of Glory goes 2.0 !

Post by zoltan » Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:19 am

mbsparta wrote: We game with model soldiers with table top terrain. We don't download and print out miniatures.Mike B
Actually, my unemployed friend did print out an entire army and used it on the tabletop simply because he couldn't 'real' figures - see here: http://www.juniorgeneral.org/JClick.php?UID=11441. It look fantastic in a unique kinda way. That said, I agree with the tenor of your comments. :)

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