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First impressions upon opening the box.


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#1 CatmanSGA

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 03:41 AM

Just got the beginner game, and though I haven't finished reading the books yet, or have yet to play a game, I have a couple of impressions upon what I've seen so far.

First off, the box, I was kind of dissapointed in the packaging. A sturdier box with a lift off lid would be better suited for this type of game. The box is likely to be reused once the game is over, and the thin, tabbed lid box is just too flimsy.

The dice mechanic, despite looking more complicated than it actually it, it's brilliant, and I can easily see how it would speed up gameplay.

That being said, there aren't enough of the dice included. (Yes, I know there's 14, and that's a lot compared to other games.)  But, I've noticed that there are some skills that list dice pools of 4 green ability dice, but the game only includes 3. There's also difficulty levels of up to 5 purple difficulty dice, but the game only includes 3 of these as well. I could also envision an encounter when players can come up with good reasons to have mulitple boost dice (or you could rightly add setback dice), and there aren't enough in the Beginner Game to accomodate this.

Hopefully soon, supplimentary dice packs will be available to remedy this deficiency.

Other than that, the game looks good, fast paced. The rules allow for quick & dirty encounters without a lot of calculation of modifiers and such that sometimes bog down other games, and allows for off the wall narrative events that happen all the time in the movies.



#2 DylanRPG

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 04:52 AM

I agree with your criticisms of the packaging. The box seems like it can be easily damaged, and it's awkward putting anything in it or taking anything out--which, you know, are drawbacks that boxes specifically shouldn't have!

You're right about the dice too, although I'm pretty sure there's enough dice for the included adventure and the pre-made characters as is.

Having said that, I will have four or five players when I test this game, and I plan on using the dice app on my iPhone, the dice app on my iPad, the set of dice that came with the game, and the set of dice that came with the game my girlfriend is getting--so it's a little preposterous for me to say there's enough dice when I clearly feel there needs to be more :)

As for me, I love the tokens, and I love the maps. These are really, really well done. We're going to need more tokens of course, even to do The Long Arm of the Hutt bonus adventure, but what's included is great. It's very nice art, although, and this isn't a gripe, some of the art in the adventure and rulebooks I recognize from other Star Wars books. For example there's a blue female Twi'lek holding a blaster that comes right out of Star Wars: The Essential Guide to Alien Species. And yes, I realize it's sad that I know that.

The adventure is also well written and looks fun.

I actually plan on allowing my players to create characters using beta rules, and am adapting the adventure to them. Most of them have more than a few RPGs under their belt and it should be fine.

 


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#3 Donovan Morningfire

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:05 AM

I had similar feelings about the packaging used for the Beginner Box, and would have been quite willing to pay an extra 5 to 10 bucks for a sturdier cardboard box with a lift-off lid, as it would make hauling said box around a lot better.

As for the dice, it's a bit of a mixed bag.  While I can see your concern about not having enough to cover all possible circumstances, from what I've seen in terms of playing and GM'ing EotE, there's not many cases where you're going to need more than 3 purple/difficulty dice, particularly where the pre-written adventure is concerned.  An extra green/ability die might have been nice for those couple characters that have dice pools requiring that many, but it's not that difficult to roll the three, tally up the results, and then re-roll one of them to cover the fourth die.

Then again, I've pretty much been relying on the dice app since the EotE Beta book came out, even though I now have actual dice, so it could very well be that I don't see it as being that big of a concern becuase of my reliance on the dice app.


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#4 copperbell

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:44 AM

So is the box big enough that you can fit the Beta book inside?

I bought the Beta book and purchased enough dice to use the included die sheet which I still have which should cover all of the dice needed when included with those in the box.

Have bought a second copy of the Beta book along with spare dice for a friend as a Xmas present who was interested in the game when i ran it around a friend's and am wondering if I should have bought two more copies for the others although I'm also wondering if I'm better off waiting for the actual version to be released instead so they can get a copy of that next Xmas.

Are there any plans to release the dice app for say blackberry mobile phones since I assume they can't release it for tablets or pcs?

It being flimsy isn't that big a problem but will still read up on your opinions.

Oh before I forget (again!) have a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!



#5 Donovan Morningfire

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:35 AM

copperbell said:

So is the box big enough that you can fit the Beta book inside?

Yep, it's plenty big enough to hold the Beta book and plenty of extra dice if you've gone the route of applying the stickers to your dice.


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#6 TacticalBastrd

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 03:53 AM

DylanRPG said:

I actually plan on allowing my players to create characters using beta rules, and am adapting the adventure to them. Most of them have more than a few RPGs under their belt and it should be fine.

 

 

Im doing the same thing. Let me know how it works out for you. As much as I love the game so far the starting story seems far to easy, even for people new to RPGs.


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#7 WittyDroog

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:29 AM

Well I think it's supposed to be easier than a typical scenario as it's a "Beginners Game". The more important thing is to teach the players the concepts of the game so they're ready for the full shibang.



#8 Kallabecca

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 04:38 PM

Donovan Morningfire said:

copperbell said:

 

So is the box big enough that you can fit the Beta book inside?

 

 

Yep, it's plenty big enough to hold the Beta book and plenty of extra dice if you've gone the route of applying the stickers to your dice.

Sure, you can remove the thick cardboard insert, but then you have a very thin, very weak box holding your books.



#9 CatmanSGA

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 02:28 PM

While, you're correct that none of the task rolls in the beginner adventure requires skill rolls for the 4 green dice skills, the rulebook for the beginner game does include some character stats and ship stats to use for a GM to continue the adventures of the pre-gen characters and make their own stories, and that in itself would increase the likelihood of those 4 green dice pools to be used. (Though the GM could just allow them to spend a destiny point or something to "upgrade" the 4th one to a proficiency die.)



#10 aramis

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:04 PM

Got mine…

1st impression, before even unsealing the shrink: "Damn, that box is worthless!"

Next impression, upon opening the box: "Wow - they could have done a folio format and saved mass and cardboard"

Then, "Hmm, the dice are smaller than I expected. Whatever"

And, "Wow - 17x22 poster map! COOL!!!"

The tokens are pretty, but almost no advice on using them is presented.

The character folios are nice enough. Great for starting players. My daughter (13yo) looked through and loved it.

The character sheet layout in the back of them is pretty nice, but still has the issue of not having all the combat data on one side.

The adventure, on a quick skim, looks decent enough. 

The rulebook is nicely laid out, and an excellent starter.



#11 WittyDroog

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:36 PM

aramis said:

 

The tokens are pretty, but almost no advice on using them is presented.

 

 

What advice would you need? The Adventure books has pictures of the NPC's (with the exception of the droids, which are clearly defined on the tokens), and the extras are designed to work with Long Arm of the Hutt for the most part. Seemed straightforward to me.

 

Do you mean how to use them on a map? Because the example play shows how the tokens could interact with the cantina and the rules describe how range is abstracted and to use rough estimates.



#12 aramis

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 11:30 PM

WittyDroog said:

 

aramis said:

 

The tokens are pretty, but almost no advice on using them is presented.

 

 

What advice would you need? The Adventure books has pictures of the NPC's (with the exception of the droids, which are clearly defined on the tokens), and the extras are designed to work with Long Arm of the Hutt for the most part. Seemed straightforward to me.

 

Do you mean how to use them on a map? Because the example play shows how the tokens could interact with the cantina and the rules describe how range is abstracted and to use rough estimates.

 

 

I'm thinking for what is a major expense for inclusion of a full-sized countersheet in the boxed set, having a couple paragraphs of actual rules for them would have been par for the course - especially since they are not expected components of the full game. Having an "area based" combat movement option in the box (even as an insert sheet) would have given the boxed set additional long-term salability, especially if said area based combat movement didn't appear in the main game. 

It's just a case where it feels like they were included more for the D&D crowd than for the intended audience of new players.

 



#13 WittyDroog

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 11:54 PM

I get where you're coming from, but I just don't see how much more they could have explained it.

I mean inside the "READ THIS FIRST" pamphlet there's a big "How to use the map and character tokens" explaining exactly how tokens are used to abstractly represent distances. Then you got Ranges explained in the first encounter of the Adventure book. That's what you wanted, right? An explanation of what to do with the tokens?

 

You talk about how the tokens are this big added expense that the core rulebook isn't going to have, that's GREAT if you don't do this kind of combat but prefer more narrative styles because when you buy the full game you don't have to pay extra for a bunch of tokens that are optional (Looking at you, WHRP3e.). Including tokens in the beginner's box makes absolute sense because that's what EVERY RPG has done for their Red Box equivilent (if applicable)

 

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it almost sounds like you're saying that the beginner set should include core rules for map movement like you would find in grid based d20 systems despite that no such rules are part of the Core Rulebook (at least there is no indication that would be included as the abstract range band system is pretty hard wired in). If the beginner set is supposed to help ease you into the rules it seems pretty wonky to put something like 1 inch Squares = 5 feet kind of a system into what is essentially the first 3-4 sessions of the game and then drop it when the Core Rulebook comes out. Adding and/or expanding core mechanics in the Core Rulebook? Sure, since the beginner's set is supposed to be simplified. Taking away rules? You haven't sold me.



#14 CatmanSGA

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 04:29 AM

Not to mention, not everybody owns or has access to compatible devices, if any devices at all, on which to download the dice app.



#15 aramis

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 04:06 PM

WittyDroog said:

I get where you're coming from, but I just don't see how much more they could have explained it.

 You haven't sold me.

I'm reasonably certain you wouldn't buy water whilst dying of thirst… your username seems really ironic… for you seem neither witty nor friendly. 

The use suggestion in the "read me first" is fine if one is already used to the idea of physical representations on map….

but you keep making the idiotic and witless assumption that the typical buyer should be able to handle gaps in information filled in easily by years of gaming experience - which is something that, once the initial rush dies off, should NOT be the case for the average buyer.

The initial rush, yeah, a lot of experienced gamers. Beta players, people converting from SWSE or WEG, people hearing about it through the grapevine…

But the real meat of a "starter set" like the beginner box is suitability for that very titular element: beginners. 

It's got two big issues - the counters are not actually part of the mechanics of the game but are included and a major component in the box (costing at least as much as two character folios, if not approaching the cost of the adventure book itself) and the lack of a 1¶ note to the GM in encounter 3 to direct the players with "known character knowledge" to the control center rather than the ship.

 

 



#16 WittyDroog

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 06:13 PM

So instead of bogging down beginner players of details like line-of-sight or Diagonal Movement issues or range measurements or all the other hoopla that goes down in map-based RPGs, the Beginner Set (and by virture, the full game) makes things easier by just using a simple abstract range band system. You're assuming that everyone who is going to play this game come with a deeply engrained mindset of 5 ft. grids  and just can't fathom that a game is simplier than that.

What gap is there in information? This set tells you how the game uses movement if you intend to use a map and tokens, it doesn't tell you about how to convert exact distances because that's not the point nor the intention of the game. This abstract system of range is what's going to be in the full game. 

 

You make it sound like I'm just making this stuff up on the spot but there's been a huge example staring you right in the face. It's the game that Edge of the Empire draws a lot, if not most, of its influence: WarHammer Fantasy Roleplay 3rd Edition

If you haven't played the game yet, go ahead and take a look at the product page or maybe look at a video or two of gameplay. You'll notice that it uses a LOT of tokens (An FFG game with punch-out tokens? Stop the media!). The starter set comes with a slew of them from stands to stance rings to fatigue counters to wounds to you name it. It looks a lot like Descent does minus the game board. Even the expansions come with more tokens for NPC bad guys or other useful bits and pieces. The kicker? None of them are required to play the game. Not a single token is actually nessesary to play as they're all optional game aids. They help in visualizing the battlefield and seeing where people are in relation to each other but that's it. There's no rules counting squares, for line of sight, or any of those other things. None. The concept of the rules found in this WarHammer game is the same foundation in Edge of the Empire, so why would they include more comprehensive rules in the beginner set that wouldn't be included in the core rulebook?

It's like saying that this beginner set should have included rules for ditching the dice, "which added to the cost of the set" and likely more than a sheet of cardboard and using traditional d20 mechanics simply because beginner players would be more used to that.

I'm just trying to explain to you why the tokens are included, there's no need for personal attacks (I mean username insults? What am I supposed to do? Say "Oh yeah well you're no musketeer"?)

 






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