Friday, February 19, 2010

the firestorm armada vs Full Thrust brouhaha lets build connections, not throw brickbats

[really useful discussion started completely offhand by accident by servitob at 6 inch move comparing FS:A to FT]

despite all the bullets I REALLY would LOVE a review of FS:A
mechanics, gameplay, where its stodgy, where its quick, where players can contribute to the game creatively ie are there design rules etc, im no FT taliban but the thing that is different about FT is that Tuffley taught us to fish rather than giving us a fish each. the basic frameworks been provided and its been adapted to just about every genre you can think of from steampunk to sail to manga to BSG to B5 and Star wars, the cross over dimensions rulebook only recently compiled has that and more.

as far as  availability goes well  theres a difference as im sure you know  between brand presence/marketing and supply of goods.

GZG is a one/two man business and they are almost totally devoted to making miniatures churning out new casting designs thats literally where their bread and butter is Jon simply doesnt have the time/funds  to spend on marketing or rules development which is left to a cadre of unpaid playtesters who have FT3 in a looong beta until jon can review/proof/typeset/arrange artwork for somethng he can send to a printer

tuffleys approach to rules is akin t the glorious days of the 70s when anyone and everyone ran off their own rules on gestetner in a no fuss no hype way.

 the problem is mass-market rulebooks have become picturebooks and that's what the younger, more visual readers  think the hobby is about.

as an FT player who wants to bring new players to the game, I know the importance to a newbie of being able to hold a rulebook in your hand to feel like the games alive and "yours". its a point ive highlighted and pushed (I think playtesting of FT3 could be more visible, but alas its all close-hold)  but ultimately its down to Jon.

FT is also highly fungible.. and that freaks some people out, who want "the rules" or "the universe" and all the backstory ready made but like I said GZG is a miniatures company and  theyve not the time to do so, the fans have filled the gap and you wil NOT see GZG  doing internet wide takedowns as others have.

for me FT is the best bang for your buck around when money is tight(and it is)

Jon doesnt want to be a Corporate Jabberwocky and thank god for that

your OP has been good,its highlighted that the hobby is wider than just one game and how new releases do stand on the shoulders of giants.

"Brand capture" a policy that a customer is only active in a  niche with  one company's products (for GW that means  their aim is that THEY *are* all of wargaming to their buyers) is antithetical to the wider hobby as it creates games-systems ghettoes and destroys communities and interchange between periods systems and genres.

it might be good for business but its bad for the "hobby", diversity Is great, but isolation and  systems bigotry isnt.. either as a commercial strategy or club policy

FT has two conventions  in the US and at least one in Oz., but alas keeping brand "mindshare" has been left to the fans who do their part, keeping the rulebook in print, is important even though its free.

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