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BI 4th Edition Rants


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#1 gatefold313

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 10:02 PM

I purchased Talisman a couple of days ago at a toy and game expo that had a local game store booth selling all the best in non commercial board games.  I was absolutely ecstatic and couldnt wait to go home and play one of my favorite games from my youth with my girlfriend, whom had never played before.  So after relearning the rules from the rulebook I still felt like something was a little off.  Everything seemed fine untill about a half hour into play when my girlfriend started complaining that some things just didn't make sense, and was getting very frustrated.  Most of the issues were resolved with a little common sense and some debating on what is fair and what isn't (debate sometimes read as shout.)  My girlfriend went so far as to diss Talisman!!  We played a very long, very painful game that night, and I wondered, how could I have played a game of Talisman and not have fun?  Well after checking the internet for a Q&A sheet I realized just how many errors and open ends the Black Industries version of the rules, cards, and even the freaking gameboard had.   No wonder I had so little fun trying to teach someone to play.  I realize that most games in the RPG and non commercial board game area have oversights and errors that get corrected later in errata sheets but it just seemed like those were alot of mistakes for a game which has been around for 25 years.  Well at least there is a revised edition coming soon and FFG had the good grace to provide a a conversion set for us unfortunate BI 4th owners.  Like the titles says this was a rant, but feel free to comment if you have had a similar BI 4th frustration. 



#2 Gawain

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 05:06 AM

I definitely feel your pain! I was one of the more active posters in BI's Talisman forum, and watched the FAQ/Errata grow steadily day by day. It was very disappointing at first, but luckily my group of players isn't as nitpicky about stuff as I am. I just felt, as you, that for a game in its then 4th edition to have that many errors was totally unacceptable. The rulebook had tons of misleading information, references to wrong page and rule numbers , as well as obvious copy/pasting from previous editions (like the example of play that used rules for the "old" Mule). Several of the cards too had issues. And the board itself even was missing critical information (like ".. and draw 1 adventure card" in the dessert spaces).

Typos aside, what I found even more frustrating, was the obvious "broken" rules; Overpowered characters and items especially. Needing to tell everyone how this and that item doesn't actually work as is stated on the card gets really boring really fast!

Now don't get me wrong, I've loved Talisman for a long time, and still do. It's just that when I bought the 4th edition I hadn't played it for maybe 10 years, so a lot of the good memories was killed off by a lot of new, frustrating ones. All in all I'm just glad someone picked up the license (eternally grateful to BI for getting the ball rolling) and plans on pouring out expansions, as well as taking a stab at correcting the faults of the BI release.Hopefully FFG will have more luck with it :)



#3 vogless

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 06:25 AM

I can't wait to see the new rulebook.

I was praying for new character art, but at least FFG touched them up a bit. Still, I'd like to see the game get a little closer to the Warhammer setting like the older editions....



#4 duck

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 07:03 AM

Yeah, I think all of us that have been playing the BI 4th Edition have many of the same complaints.  We've done basically the same thing, poured over the rulebook, argued things out, changed rules from game to game to try them out... There's been some feelings hurt and certainly frustration but hopefully all long standing disputes will be resolved in Jan.



#5 Almeric

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 07:06 AM

The simple fact is that the BI guys spent a ton of time making 4th Ed. look pretty, and almost no time actually making the game into a legitimate "new" edition.  You can't print the exact same Prophetess card that was in 2nd Ed. and then pretend like it was all a big typo.  No way in hell.  They just didn't bother.

I'm VERY excited for the upgrade edition of 4th Ed. that FFG is making! :)



#6 talismanamsilat

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 07:48 AM

Yes you are correct. We had to keep updating the errata and FAQ time after time (shush Cindy) with BI! Not with this release mind you with FFG - we have already spotted the tiny couple of errors in this edition. The Druid missing an "s" in the word Rune's'word is about as worse as it gets thankfully! The rule book is absolutely divine and is error free (I know your going to try and find some!) Anyway, any errors will most certainly be corrected in a secondary print run if Talisman completely sells out!!!



#7 vogless

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Posted 24 November 2008 - 10:30 AM

It was BI's first (and only) boardgame. That being said, I was dissapointed that they didn't address any of 2nd's major issues. Like I've said before, letting FFG do Talisman is like mixing chocolate and peanut butter.... YUM!

 

I'm praying GW doesn't pull the license ever again...........



#8 JCHendee

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Posted 25 November 2008 - 11:37 AM

To be honest, I share some of the woes of others here, but also would raise a counterpoint: it's a game, and not worth getting excessively upset. Hopefully errata are predominantly fixed with the upgrade (and paying for that in addition was annoying enough).  But if glitches persist, common sense and enjoyment can still prevail... except...

My major complaint is glitz versus substance. In the 4th (revised or not) , the board is much larger than any previous edition. This is likely to accomodate the wider cards (and/or provide room for more players). The problem is, that even with just Barb (wife) and I playing, we still had to move each others pieces. We constantly had to read spaces to each other if needed or get up and move about the board. On a standard dinning table for 4+, there was very little room to layout for two players, let alone four or more. A bad choice.

Card fronts and the board were low contrast. Landmark coloring on the board was dull and faded into the background. Sitting at table level, it took longer than I remember of 2nd edition (from 9 years back) to spot a space sought in the "land" at a quick glance. The front sides of cards, as well as board spaces, are lacking in sufficient combination of saturation and contrast to work well with black text. Difficulty in reading came often, especially for those ridiculously small frames on the sides of Character cars.

Then there is the fancy frame on most card fronts, which is overdone, cramps text, stats, titling, AND artwork. And features of the frame (those round ruby corners) weren't even used efficiently. These could've held shorthand codes, like bonuses on Objects and Followers (S+1, C+2, etc.) or other such, so that when cards held by a player are stacked solitaire style (yes, the extra table space is needed more than ever) the benefits and title show clearly for all cards. And it gets no better with the upgrade overall (from only promo cards and packaging ads I've seen). 

Compensations made on card fronts weren't done right. Decreased framing, yes, but still crowding all except the text. The order number on Adventure cards was moved to the bottom right and is more visible. But still no efficient use of those ruby circles; instead they're reduced to pointess and should've been abandoned completely. Card back titling is now gone, and new players have to learn which backs mean what instead knowing at a glance. All in all, whatever error correction was made has been counter balanced by incomplete redesign and additional glitz over substance and ease of play. And the solution for Character Cards? Make them bigger (more table space gone).

Bigger is not better; eye-catching is not efficient... especially when efficiency and ease are sacrificed even more with changes. And yet still, Barb and I will continue to play, and we'll enjoy it, partially based on nostalgia for the 2nd edition... but for first time we are looking elsewhere for competing products of a like kind.



#9 shawn_low

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Posted 25 November 2008 - 05:24 PM

Seems to be the case with several FFG games: unclear rules (perhaps written by people 'too close' to the game). Talisman is such a simple game so I don't see how the rules can be screwed up.

I mean, I think the 1st/2nd edition rules were what, 4 or 6 pages?

Perhaps FFG should release the rulebook to the general gaming populace to get feedback? Or pay an editor or proofreader to check it before release!



#10 soldierofthemoot

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 02:11 PM

vogless said:

I was praying for new character art, but at least FFG touched them up a bit. Still, I'd like to see the game get a little closer to the Warhammer setting like the older editions....

 

Yeah I wouldn't mind making some background based on the Warhammer world and changing the board abit. Might start today.



#11 JCHendee

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Posted 28 November 2008 - 04:03 PM

soldierofthemoot said:

Yeah I wouldn't mind making some background based on the Warhammer world and changing the board abit. Might start today.

I for one (among many) would vote against such a move. If you want a Talisman closer to Warhammer, then  find a copy of 3rd edition. That's what was attempted with 3rd and it didn't go over very well with the majority of board game players. This is part of the game's history. Probably why 4th edition attempts to step back to the foundations of the 2nd edition.



#12 Rett

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Posted 29 November 2008 - 12:26 AM

My biggest rant, was with The FAQ/ERRATA changing BY THE HOUR! I would download one version to play a game, and then the EXACT SAME VERSION NUMBER had be CHANGED again!

Ell - Love ya man, however... KEEP YOUR FINGERS OUTTA IT! :) :)



#13 Cidervampire

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Posted 29 November 2008 - 11:05 AM

Good to see you Rett!

I remember when both of us were compiling a new FAQ every other day!

 

Geoff



#14 Lord_Boofhead

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 04:21 AM

JCHendee said:

soldierofthemoot said:

Yeah I wouldn't mind making some background based on the Warhammer world and changing the board abit. Might start today.

 

I for one (among many) would vote against such a move. If you want a Talisman closer to Warhammer, then  find a copy of 3rd edition. That's what was attempted with 3rd and it didn't go over very well with the majority of board game players. This is part of the game's history. Probably why 4th edition attempts to step back to the foundations of the 2nd edition.

Go easy on him he's only a youg'un.

But you are right it was sorta tried bnack in 3rd Ed when they plonked a load of WFB dudes into talisman and it was just a bit wrong.

Talsiman is High Fantasy and Warhamer is Low fantasy and the two don't mix well.

 

If you want a Warhamer Board Game, lobby GW to reprint or licence WHQ!



#15 Lord_Boofhead

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 04:24 AM

Also what theis I hear about a conversion pack?



#16 talismanisland

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Posted 30 November 2008 - 05:20 AM

Lord_Boofhead said:

Also what theis I hear about a conversion pack?

FFG are making an upgrade pack for those people who purchased the BI version of 4th Edition.


Harbourmaster at Talisman Island - 15 magical years and counting!

Sometimes I even update the Talisman Island Facebook Page!




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