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Been trying to digest the news since this morning, but I am still chocked by the announcement. I am truly wondering what FFG are doing here again. What is their vision of this game? Is it to split the community in two, the old school guys and the new generation way of playing? How can you possibly reconcile that? Making the public broader by surfing the wave of trendy apps definitely feels like a purely commercial approach. Opening the wallet for data with a finite lifespan is not always trivial either.

 

I´m going to ignore this completely, for the better of the tradition me and my playgroups have been trying to hold on to. Once every week we leave our computers, phones and tablets to come and sit down, chat, speak to each other and play a board game. That's not being old-school, that's being considerate of the environment we live in and try to take some distance sometimes from the omnipresent audiovisual. Games with apps is just the opposite of what we are trying to do. So yeah, Descent was the name of that experience and from now on we´ll have to try to ignore that FFG are trying to throw it in a completely different direction. A bit like some music star you have been a huge fan of until that person claimed something completely contrary to your beliefs in public. Yeah that's how I feel right now.

 

App-based games are also cool the first few times, and then you realize that you rely on electronic to save your progress, roll your own dices, draw your own cards, then you need to update it, make sure you have power in it so it doesn't go poof in the middle of a game, etc. Cannot people do other things than click on things? That's my view of board gaming with apps, feel free to disagree for all I care FFG.

 

Then, even worse than that, I find mind-blowing that because of this announcement we suddenly have a few major problems with the game, like: the role of Overlord is now controvertial. Exploration has always been lacking. We did not have any tool for organizing expansions and campaigns, etc. Seriously?

 

I predict a Monopoly Descent next year and even a Yatzee version. Keeeewl !

 

Now it's fine if people feel more confortable not having an overlord, but then play another game. Why would FFG need to feel forced to provide an overlord-less version of the game? I design a game and then I break it into pieces to satisfy the masses? Don't designers have any respect for their own product?

 

I don't think FFG is trying to split the community or even move away from the traditional Descent Board game resource wise. As far as I can see this app will only replace the PoD Coops that were probably a very cost unefficient product. (low development cost, overall medium price but probably very slim profit margins, because components were a high % of the cost)

 

What do you think of these PoD Coops, did you feel the same about them? (concerning split of the community)

 

The way I see it is that the Coops as well as this app rely heavily on the traditional Descent products to function and offer new interesting content. Also FFG imo won't make much on the app, as it features a free mini-campaign and a full campaign will be 10$. Even if these 10$ are pure profit, I imagine FFG making much more profit on every other Descent product (minus lieut. and dice pack), so it makes no sense to stop releasing them as long as they sell. So I really see no reason for fearing that this app will shift FFGs focus on the Descent product-line.

 

 

So what's FFG's reason to develop such an app?

Imo it's all about FFGs value politics. FFG repeatedly stated over the past year that they don't think about games so much in what is acceptable for a game to cost, but they want consumers to see their games and find so much value in them that they gladly pay the price. What better way to offer more value for your physical components and game mechanics than offering elaborate different playstyles at no or very little additional cost? Giving another incentive to buy the physical Descent games and expansions by saying: If you choose Descent you get a highly competitive tactical dungeon crawler and an atmospheric coop dungeon crawler all in one. People that like to play a coop dungeon crawler from time to time don't invest their money in another game, but buying the Descent expansions instead, because they can't just use it for 1vmany, but also for Coop play.

 

Imo this was their idea with the PoD Coops, but they were fiddly and hadn't much replay value. Also you always needed to pay for the cards that I think were a high % of the total cost, which effectivly drove the prices up for the costumers, making them too expensive for what they tried to be. (I payed 18€ for Nature's Ire).

The fiddlyness was due to the need of constantly checking your self printed manual (up to 9 times per session), looking for the room corresponding to the drawn card and keeping your card and your manual in reach for special rules/goal of the room.

With the app you don't need to draw a room card and search for the correpsonding section in the rulebook, don't need to print the rulebook by yourself, but just execute "advance" on the app and the app shows you instantly how the room is set-up and what the goal is.

At the beginning of the OL turn you had to draw a monster AI card that showed you the actions that the monsters were taking this turn. The problem with this was that it always had all 4 monstergroups of the Coop on the cards and they were balanced accordingly, meaning that sometimes there is only one monstergroup in this room and it does very little due to the other monsters having strong actions on the AI card. At the start of the OL turn the app will show you the excact same comments as the cards did but probably balanced to what monsters are on the board.

Generally monster AI had a list of actions the monsters performed from top to bottom if able. From what we have seen the app features the excact same AI system.

 

So that's what the app is doing during gameplay (what the video showed): Showing you the room setup, when entering a new room and showing you the AI for the monsters once it's the OL's turn. Nothing else. You still roll the dice for the monsters, you still execute the AI by yourself, you don't need to input hero positions or anything the like (note how there is no hero symbol on the game board), it's just a very fancy questguide.

 

Also comparing this to the 18€ PoD Coops, this will come with a free mini campaign and even the paid campaigns are much less (nearly half) of the PoDs price at 10$ and you can get them instantly, no waiting for shipment or the like. They also incorperate every expansion unlike the PoDs. 

 

 

But it's true. It's a digital product and hence not for eternity. However the investment seem so little (one free mini-campaign and 10$ for one huge campaign) that I don't really feel like this is something that has to last forever. Also the physical Descent game and expansion are needed to play this and I don't see FFG with their value politics to release physical products only for the app or even cut back on physical expansions for this game, because it's needed for the app to evolve. Imo it just adds value to the game for those that value coop dungeon crawlers. Also the "no exploration" and so on controversies aren't real controversies anymore, because well you can still play Descent with exploration or without, with OL or without.

 

If anything this will drive up the sales of Descent products ensuring us a steady flow of content for 1vsmany and Coop play.

Edited by DAMaz

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FINALLY!! I have been collecting every expansion to date but, aside from the 3 solo quests offered, the entire collection has sat dormant because I have no other folks interested in playing. Now everything is unlocked for me to play solo! I am beyond ecstatic! I'm assuming you will still need to use the physical cards and dice? Though these things could be generated through the app. I do hope they keep the requirement of all the physical pieces of the game. Protects the IP as well. I can't wait for this. Let's hope it a a legit tool that unlocks the power of the physical product that you have pur hased and not a way to introduce micro transactions to our beloved game.

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I think the most amusing thing about this announcement for me, is that they have the time, personnel, and money to develop an app for the game, but don't have the same to generate a competent FAQ.

 

As Indalecio indicates above, I really don't think there is any long term planning or direction for this game any more.  It's sad, but I am truly thinking about giving up on this game.

 

I don't know man.. I think this move shows there is long term planning and direction. It takes a fair amount of effort to create a foundation that can deliver (*shudder*) In-App/Content.. I think this is a great way to enhance FFGs 'in-house' printing, less cost = more content profit? 

 

This and Mists-of-Bilehall/Chains-that-bind does show that FFG are cost focused and profit driven though.. so that does make me sad. 

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I think the most amusing thing about this announcement for me, is that they have the time, personnel, and money to develop an app for the game, but don't have the same to generate a competent FAQ.

 

As Indalecio indicates above, I really don't think there is any long term planning or direction for this game any more.  It's sad, but I am truly thinking about giving up on this game.

 

I don't know man.. I think this move shows there is long term planning and direction. It takes a fair amount of effort to create a foundation that can deliver (*shudder*) In-App/Content.. I think this is a great way to enhance FFGs 'in-house' printing, less cost = more content profit? 

 

This and Mists-of-Bilehall/Chains-that-bind does show that FFG are cost focused and profit driven though.. so that does make me sad. 

 

 

I share your views to an extent. If Mists of Bilehall/Chains that rust don't feature signficantly more than a big box expansion, it truly shows a questionable turn to cost focused and profit driven that I didn't hope FFG would pursue.

 

On the other hand the app offers much more content and maybe better balance than the PoDs, so it's not just a profit increase (although it very likely is a profit increase as well). The free mini campaign and a 10$ campaign that draws from all expansions is clearly more content than ~10rooms and 4 monsters from the core set 15$ PoD Coop.

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

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I don't think that the app is the new direction of that game, it is an additionnal path that answers a lot of expectations and regrets. Where is the dungeon crawler flavor from my D1 ? why not doing a coop version ? why isn't any solo version available ? why not bulding a campaign with all the stuff released ?
The coop PoD were a nice thing to have but seriously they aren't so satisfying. It is an improvement to have all the overlord mechanics displayed for you and it brings some tension to the game by discovering on the screen what is next to come. It  may enhance the atmosphere of the game (music, story telling...)

 

it will permit me to test things that i wouldn't have dare with my usual playgroups. You know when you want to pick up the heroe that you never played before and everybody is looking at you saying: You can't be serious ? Not that useless crap ! When starting a campaign you will go for efficiency not waisting time with originality.

 

At the same time i would love to play more D than i actually do, but to gather everyone once a week is quite an achievement. So when being less that 3 i wouldn't mind going for the app, particularly when the other player is more or less a newbie to the game.

 

Having saying that, where is the bloody announcement for Chains that Rust !?! :P
 

Edited by Tintaglia

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

 

Really I didn't see that mentioned. I think it just let's the App takes your physical sets (Monsters, Cards et al) into consideration when playing the content via Road to Legend. 

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

 

Really I didn't see that mentioned. I think it just let's the App takes your physical sets (Monsters, Cards et al) into consideration when playing the content via Road to Legend.

Watch the video closely and stop at the part where you manage your collection. They have a Web Store button and they mention what you get with a digital purchase.

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

 

Really I didn't see that mentioned. I think it just let's the App takes your physical sets (Monsters, Cards et al) into consideration when playing the content via Road to Legend.

Watch the video closely and stop at the part where you manage your collection. They have a Web Store button and they mention what you get with a digital purchase.

 

 

It's true that there is this webstore button and maybe you are on to something. However the text says nothing about a purchase, but rather "by adding this to your collection you unlock the following digital content" and there is an "add to your collection" button on the left side of the window, so I'm guessing it's refering to that. Also basically FFG said that adding expansions to your collection is free of charge.

 

So far FFG has only said that we can buy new campaigns. Maybe the "webstore" button just links you to the FFG store to buy the physical copy of the expansion? Something like a hidden ad maybe.

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I see a lot of negative reaction here. It puzzles me as to why. Do people think this means FFG will discontinue regular updates, expansions, etc. In favor of digital content delivery? They would be killing their cash cow who's popularity has afforded them the opportunity to try something like this.

I see it as pretty simple... if you have a regular gaming group and are happy with what is offered by FFG. Don't use it. Don't worry about it. Why should you? Just don't use it. FFG is not going to stop producing physical content. If that stops then there is no platform for the digital content.

But I would argue that there are probably more consumers of Descent who are not happy with the amount of time or opportunity they have to play this great game than consumers that do. I am definitely one of those and I know there are more. Way more in my boat. Most people with families simply don't have time to game in a group. So any time that is available is usually spur of the moment and that doesn't mix well with getting a group together. FFG is seeing the trend that the market is taking. There are more people interested in our hobby now than ever but not everyone has the same allocations of available time that the old guard does. FFG is simply looking for ways to generate more enjoyment for consumers of one of their AAA brands. I hope they do the same thing for Imperial Assault!

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

 

Really I didn't see that mentioned. I think it just let's the App takes your physical sets (Monsters, Cards et al) into consideration when playing the content via Road to Legend.

Watch the video closely and stop at the part where you manage your collection. They have a Web Store button and they mention what you get with a digital purchase.

 

It's true that there is this webstore button and maybe you are on to something. However the text says nothing about a purchase, but rather "by adding this to your collection you unlock the following digital content" and there is an "add to your collection" button on the left side of the window, so I'm guessing it's refering to that. Also basically FFG said that adding expansions to your collection is free of charge.

 

So far FFG has only said that we can buy new campaigns. Maybe the "webstore" button just links you to the FFG store to buy the physical copy of the expansion? Something like a hidden ad maybe.

Hmmmm... true. You could be right as well. I for one, however, would not be surprised if there is more to it. And frankly, I would embrace it whole heartedly. Having a (presumably free of very low cost) app that you can use to enhance physical game play of the content you own but also that you can upgrade to play fully on your device is something I would be all over. I travel a lot and being able to play on the go would be a dream come true. It would have to be fully faithful to the physical game, with physical dice rolls, character cards, miniatures, etc. Not like what they did to Warhammer Quest.

Anyway, I'm probably wrong. But who knows??

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I don't think FFG is trying to split the community or even move away from the traditional Descent Board game resource wise. As far as I can see this app will only replace the PoD Coops that were probably a very cost unefficient product. (low development cost, overall medium price but probably very slim profit margins, because components were a high % of the cost)

What do you think of these PoD Coops, did you feel the same about them? (concerning split of the community)

Thanks for your input in general, I agree with a lot of what you said, but I´ll react to some of your input, as follows.

I did feel negative about the co-ops too, although not for the same reasons. My issue with the co-ops is mainly that they are one-offs and have extremely limited content. I have other games in direct competition with them, and in the current state of things the co-ops don't live up to the same level of enjoyment I can get by playing these other games.

Regarding the app again, let's say that I am skeptical for two main reasons:

1- The way it is promoted. Implications on FFG's focus for the product line, and impact on the community.

2- It's an app on a tablet. Big no for me.

There is actually a third reason which is:

3- Introduction of a new game mode, for the implications it has on the product line as originally designed.

However I´ll admit this point is a matter of taste. Some players like full co-ops, some players clearly stated the app would allow themto play the game more often, so there is no shadow of doubt the app could be good for a % of these players and I´ll not try to dimiss that fact. If we can get more players to play the game WITHOUT deteriorating the quality of the original product (e.g. still release content and have an active/passionate community) then it's all good for us and FFG.

 

 

The way I see it is that the Coops as well as this app rely heavily on the traditional Descent products to function and offer new interesting content. Also FFG imo won't make much on the app, as it features a free mini-campaign and a full campaign will be 10$. Even if these 10$ are pure profit, I imagine FFG making much more profit on every other Descent product (minus lieut. and dice pack), so it makes no sense to stop releasing them as long as they sell. So I really see no reason for fearing that this app will shift FFGs focus on the Descent product-line.

I am more concerned than you are. They need resources to publish these app-friendly quests, they will also need people maintaining the tool (not only engineers) and answer questions. It's a % of the focus on the original Descent that is being moved to this new game mode.

I also think releasing a game involving an app is more than releasing a new game mode. It's a statement made by FFG, a direction they are taking. If the app is popular, which I expect it to become, I don't see why FFG would find problematic to start releasing purely digital content, like tiles, monsters, or heroes. They might not need to release regular expansions anymore. This is where it starts to hurt the original game and its community. I would feel a lot more confortable if the app was promoted as a tool based on the physical game contents only, but the possibility for this kind of evolution can unfortunateley not be ruled out.

 

So that's what the app is doing during gameplay (what the video showed): Showing you the room setup, when entering a new room and showing you the AI for the monsters once it's the OL's turn. Nothing else. You still roll the dice for the monsters, you still execute the AI by yourself, you don't need to input hero positions or anything the like (note how there is no hero symbol on the game board), it's just a very fancy questguide.

I don't see what's appealing about this compared to drawing a card showing the tiles setup, or figuring out a monster's action by going through its AI action card. Like you said, the app is fancy, but that's really all I see here.

Having a proper quest book feels way more immersive than scrolling on a screen to find the travel step or whatever. If it was Star Wars, then the app would make much more sense. Android, XCOM etc, these are good immersive worlds to condense on an app. But Runebound?

 

Also the "no exploration" and so on controversies aren't real controversies anymore, because well you can still play Descent with exploration or without, with OL or without.

This is absolutely a way to look at it. I only regret that the game loses some of its identity by making it that interchangeable.

- Yeah we play Descent every week.

- Oh the game with the app?

- No we´re playing the original game.

- Ah the version without the fancy app, without exploration and with the dude killing all your joy?

- Yeah that's it.

- You like to hurt yourself don't you?

- [...]

I mean, it sorts of make us look bad in comparison.

 

I don't think that the app is the new direction of that game, it is an additionnal path that answers a lot of expectations and regrets. Where is the dungeon crawler flavor from my D1 ? why not doing a coop version ? why isn't any solo version available ?

Because the game has its own identity?

Because a decision was made as for how to make the game unique compared to the 100s of dungeon crawler around? Go to KS, there´s one there almost every week insipired by the greatest dungeon crawlers around, they´re ALL the same without exception.

Because D1E was taking ages to play and had its problems?

Because streamlining D1E helped FFG to get more people to play the game and removing some fat off an already complex game?

Because FFG wanted to promote strategic decisions ahead of reaction to exploration?

Because the role of the Overlord and the design around that role is one of the strongest piece of design in the board gaming industry? The Overlord (or bad guy) is generally making brainless decisions, or has very limited impact on the game overall. Descent brings life to that role.

Because board gaming in essence is a social experience? Why would solo-mode get any form of priority? I get that not everybody is able to find a playgroup, I feel very sorry for these persons, but at the end of the day it's kind of incompatible with the very idea of a board gaming experience?

 

why not bulding a campaign with all the stuff released ?

OK this is a valid point and something I´ve also be wondering about. However the reason is simple, far from everybody here own all the expansions, making campaigns based on several expansions difficult to even use.

But yeah that was my biggest complaint about the co-op expansions.

 

At the same time i would love to play more D than i actually do, but to gather everyone once a week is quite an achievement. So when being less that 3 i wouldn't mind going for the app, particularly when the other player is more or less a newbie to the game.

I play with three people including myself most of the time, two heroes per hero player and myself as the overlord. You don't need to be 5 players to enjoy Descent (although you need 4 heroes in my opinion).

I don't buy the "more suited to kids/newbies" argument either. As I´ve said earlier you´re not forced to play cutthroat if you don't want to. The Overlord role is actually a great help in that sense, because he/she can help the heroes deciding over a course of action. he can participate in these debates, help the heroes find out what's possible or not, etc. When playing with newbies you can help them making informed decisions. You can hold a card in your hand because you want your opposition to feel like they´re achieving something, if winning is not the priority.

The app does nothing in that regards. It doesn't help you to decide how to play, it doesn't help you making decisions, it doesn't back track if you made a mistake that everybody would find reasonable to replay etc.

 

I see a lot of negative reaction here. It puzzles me as to why. Do people think this means FFG will discontinue regular updates, expansions, etc. In favor of digital content delivery? They would be killing their cash cow who's popularity has afforded them the opportunity to try something like this.

I see it as pretty simple... if you have a regular gaming group and are happy with what is offered by FFG. Don't use it. Don't worry about it. Why should you? Just don't use it. FFG is not going to stop producing physical content. If that stops then there is no platform for the digital content.

But I would argue that there are probably more consumers of Descent who are not happy with the amount of time or opportunity they have to play this great game than consumers that do. I am definitely one of those and I know there are more. Way more in my boat. Most people with families simply don't have time to game in a group. So any time that is available is usually spur of the moment and that doesn't mix well with getting a group together. FFG is seeing the trend that the market is taking. There are more people interested in our hobby now than ever but not everyone has the same allocations of available time that the old guard does. FFG is simply looking for ways to generate more enjoyment for consumers of one of their AAA brands. I hope they do the same thing for Imperial Assault!

I fail to see how this app will make the game go faster or smoother. It's not even the intent? While it does technically replaces one player (the overlord), you do realize running him by the app will seriously dumb down the AI and make the game a lot more flat.

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I am more concerned than you are. They need resources to publish these app-friendly quests, they will also need people maintaining the tool (not only engineers) and answer questions. It's a % of the focus on the original Descent that is being moved to this new game mode.

I also think releasing a game involving an app is more than releasing a new game mode. It's a statement made by FFG, a direction they are taking. If the app is popular, which I expect it to become, I don't see why FFG would find problematic to start releasing purely digital content, like tiles, monsters, or heroes. They might not need to release regular expansions anymore. This is where it starts to hurt the original game and its community. I would feel a lot more confortable if the app was promoted as a tool based on the physical game contents only, but the possibility for this kind of evolution can unfortunateley not be ruled out.

 

Indalecio, you might not realize it yourself but most of your arguments are of the slippery-slope variety. Furthermore, you mention that "you prefer" the old type of descent, which is a valid albeit moot point since it is your opinion alone. Your comment on this making some of the gamers "look bad" was a joke I guess.

 

You also mention that "resources might be shifted towards new game modes" (not a direct quote), this is akin to the slippery slope argument but it is also wrong since it's a luddite-esque argument and if the market demands it, the market demands it. If resources were to be shifted to electronic development of descent content, it's FFG's prerogative.

 

I also think you are wrong in saying that it is a problem that less traditional content will be developed. Look at all the descent content out there, if you truly have it all and played it all then you shouldn't gripe about new type of content for, not in your words, 'other' players. Apparently these 'other' players aren't as privileged in having content suited for them, and they deserve it as much as you do. It's wrong to categorize it into old and new, or analogue and electronic players because us players looking forward to this app and more electronic implementation of board games are not closer to modern FPS gamers on a "electronic-analog scale" than you are. It's not one-dimensional. This is a niche, as are all board games, and for many of us we look forward to seeing our niche demands being satisfied.

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Interesting... so, it appears that you can purchase digital versions of each expansion. I'm not sure what a digital version of of a hero, monster group, would do if you are meant to still use the physical game. I wonder if there is more to this than a simple tracker/ AO... I wonder if they are looking to enable an actual game to be played on the tablet via digital purchases. They really aren't that far off.. just add dice and cards and there's theoretically nothing stopping a full game to be played on the device. The hardest part has been done: creating the engine to deliver story and narratives, the board layout and the enemy AI. All that would be left is an RNG (the dice) and player reference cards.

 

Really I didn't see that mentioned. I think it just let's the App takes your physical sets (Monsters, Cards et al) into consideration when playing the content via Road to Legend.

Watch the video closely and stop at the part where you manage your collection. They have a Web Store button and they mention what you get with a digital purchase.

 

 

 

I think that's some pretty wild speculation from some very limited material. It's entirely up to interpretation..

I'd be more inclined to believe the Web store would take you to the FFG Store to purchase a physical copy which as the article states unlocks monsters, cards and chars..

 

BUT I can be corrected and will wait to see what further releases come from the team in the coming weeks.

 

***DANG*** ignore me I got beaten to the punch  by super slow internet.. HAH ignore my post!

Edited by mattflow

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Indalecio, you might not realize it yourself but most of your arguments are of the slippery-slope variety. Furthermore, you mention that "you prefer" the old type of descent, which is a valid albeit moot point since it is your opinion alone. Your comment on this making some of the gamers "look bad" was a joke I guess.

This small "dialog" was a joke indeed, but the point behind this layer of silliness was serious. It marginalizes the players sticking to the "old school" content or way of playing. Let's be clear here, the app is not just an accessory, it's going to be the most prominent component to the game, so new players will certainly see this as way more appealing than gaming without it. We might still be able to keep a community going playing the game as originally intended, but I believe a rift in the community will be created as a result of that. These are not only two game modes, these are different games, with - arguably - the same components.

People are free to play games with apps for all I care. I think my point is valid regarding the fact people do not realize how this society is desperately lacking human contact. Board gaming is one of the very few havens around, and people like me or my friends have been litterally surviving thanks to that. Don't dismiss the value of having a moment of your life without the implication of the internet or a screen. Then sure, do what you want with that, we might have cultural differences as well.

People are also free to play overlord-less versions of the game if they want. I think it makes most of the things that make the game interesting void, but again that's free to debate. I personally value integrity in game systems, because I relate to my own games, but again if people want to use board games as disposables then they´re free to do so.

 

My tastes and personal preferences are not to be valued higher than the community's, but my opinion (which is again mine alone) deserves to be expressed whether people like it or not, that's what a community is for.

 

You also mention that "resources might be shifted towards new game modes" (not a direct quote), this is akin to the slippery slope argument but it is also wrong since it's a luddite-esque argument and if the market demands it, the market demands it. If resources were to be shifted to electronic development of descent content, it's FFG's prerogative.

 

I agree with that, but the community is also impacted by this decision. It affects us and how we perceive our hobby. It's no longer about buying a game regardless of who publishes it, it's more and more about what vision the company has, what the community looks like, the image of the publisher etc. My other joke about the rock star is a good example, for instance. We´ll probably be hitting cultural differences again, but I personally find hard to justify the use of products from a company that has been deceiving me. The normal approach would be to just ignore it and do something else, but Descent has also been a huge investment from my part so you can understand why I take things that affect my hobby so personally.

 

I also think you are wrong in saying that it is a problem that less traditional content will be developed. Look at all the descent content out there, if you truly have it all and played it all then you shouldn't gripe about new type of content for, not in your words, 'other' players. Apparently these 'other' players aren't as privileged in having content suited for them, and they deserve it as much as you do. It's wrong to categorize it into old and new, or analogue and electronic players because us players looking forward to this app and more electronic implementation of board games are not closer to modern FPS gamers on a "electronic-analog scale" than you are. It's not one-dimensional. This is a niche, as are all board games, and for many of us we look forward to seeing our niche demands being satisfied.

Again I do respect the fact people have different views or situation than mine, but many of the reasons exposed are just not obvious to me, as I have made the remark about before. I´m trying to defend the game and prove that the app is not needed. If people need a playgroup then the app is not going to give them that. If people need full co-op, then why do people want to play Descent at the first place? I can give recommendations about very good games at it. If people prefered D1E then why not playing D1E? If people want to play with kids or newbies then why don't their adapt their playstyle? And if people want an app for a game like Descent, why not playing a video game instead?

Edited by Indalecio

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This small "dialog" was a joke indeed, but the point behind this layer of silliness was serious. It marginalizes the players sticking to the "old school" content or way of playing. Let's be clear here, the app is not just an accessory, it's going to be the most prominent component to the game, so new players will certainly see this as way more appealing than gaming without it. We might still be able to keep a community going playing the game as originally intended, but I believe a rift in the community will be created as a result of that. These are not only two game modes, these are different games, with - arguably - the same components.

People are free to play games with apps for all I care. I think my point is valid regarding the fact people do not realize how this society is desperately lacking human contact. Board gaming is one of the very few havens around, and people like me or my friends have been litterally surviving thanks to that. Don't dismiss the value of having a moment of your life without the implication of the internet or a screen. Then sure, do what you want with that, we might have cultural differences as well.

People are also free to play overlord-less versions of the game if they want. I think it makes most of the things that make the game interesting void, but again that's free to debate. I personally value integrity in game systems, because I relate to my own games, but again if people want to use board games as disposables then they´re free to do so.

 

My tastes and personal preferences are not to be valued higher than the community's, but my opinion (which is again mine alone) deserves to be expressed whether people like it or not, that's what a community is for.

 

Your opinions deserve to be expressed, but your extrapolations are still wrong in my opinion. Playing the game, on a board, rolling the dice, but using an AI on a tablet does not get in the way of human contact. Especially not if this is the contact that the humans in question crave. As you said, it's not two different game modes, it's two different games. Introducing more ways to play games can only mean that more people get to play their kind of game, and if this means a rift in the gaming community then it's a necessity, not a side-effect.

 

 

I agree with that, but the community is also impacted by this decision. It affects us and how we perceive our hobby. It's no longer about buying a game regardless of who publishes it, it's more and more about what vision the company has, what the community looks like, the image of the publisher etc. My other joke about the rock star is a good example, for instance. We´ll probably be hitting cultural differences again, but I personally find hard to justify the use of products from a company that has been deceiving me. The normal approach would be to just ignore it and do something else, but Descent has also been a huge investment from my part so you can understand why I take things that affect my hobby so personally.

 

You mention that "it's more and more about what vision the company has", and that you have been "deceived". That's only because this product does not appeal to you. For some of us, it's still about buying a game regardless of who's publishing it. This conflict of ideals that you are portraying is not shared by other gamers who look forward to the product, meaning that this change of paradigm has not occured at all. It's still about the games, just not to you because this might not be a game for you. I am not challenging your ideals, just your apocalyptic tone.

 

 

Again I do respect the fact people have different views or situation than mine, but many of the reasons exposed are just not obvious to me, as I have made the remark about before. I´m trying to defend the game and prove that the app is not needed. If people need a playgroup then the app is not going to give them that. If people need full co-op, then why do people want to play Descent at the first place? I can give recommendations about very good games at it. If people prefered D1E then why not playing D1E? If people want to play with kids or newbies then why don't their adapt their playstyle? And if people want an app for a game like Descent, why not playing a video game instead?

 

This is like saying "if you don't want to tackle people, why not play soccer instead of touch-rugby?", or "why eat chicken tikka masala if you want to eat british food, you can just eat <insert whatever> instead?". Descent has a nice atmosphere, nice items, interesting classes and the amount of components you get in the box for the price is in my opinion a good value. So for your question of "why play coop descent", my answer is "because it's fun". It seems like you want games to fit into cardinal types, with no cross-over whatsoever. I myself like the overlord mechanic, but my group doesn't. We all like descent though, and with this app we will all enjoy it even more. This app will likely allow us to enjoy descent more than any other coop game you can recommend, because we have been looking for coop games and many times we have come to the conclusion that Descent, as a coop game, would be the best for our group. Why would it be better for this kind of game to be offered by  another title rather than through a Descent mod? Once again, I think this is due to ideals and growing up with a mod-heavy PC scene I see no problems just solutions and applications through modding. Modding is good. Modding is life.

Edited by Arzang

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You still have human interaction when using the app, playing with your fellow players face to face cooperatively, so it's not like you're all just watching a screen.

 

No harm in creating different game modes. In fact, it might be a better way to introduce new players to the game by all playing coop using the app. After a campaign, you could go with the classic overlord vs players setup after everybody has become more knowledgeable of the rules and ingame abilities.

 

The overlord will be able to go full stomping mode without feeling bad because some players might not grasp all the rules yet or have the necessary experience yet.

 

I see nothing but good things regarding the app. It will also keep the interest on Descent for a longer time, increasing the potential pool of players whom also will eventually flow to the classic Overlord vs Heroes mode.

Edited by Gridash

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I have to agree with some of the thoughts Indalecio is sharing. I bet this app is going to be interactive, fun, and well-designed. I think there are going to be a large number of groups who decide to play descent in an entirely co-op style. However, I also bet there will be a significant number of players who may have been looking for others to play Descent with, but will not need to bother anymore. Automating the OL turns Descent from min 2 (without variants) to a solo game. Being (or opposing) the Overlord is my favorite part of this game by far, and in my opinion it is Descent's key contribution as a board game.

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You still have human interaction when using the app, playing with your fellow players face to face cooperatively, so it's not like you're all just watching a screen.

 

No harm in creating different game modes. In fact, it might be a better way to introduce new players to the game by all playing coop using the app. After a campaign, you could go with the classic overlord vs players setup after everybody has become more knowledgeable of the rules and ingame abilities.

 

The overlord will be able to go full stomping mode without feeling bad because some players might not grasp all the rules yet or have the necessary experience yet.

 

I see nothing but good things regarding the app. It will also keep the interest on Descent for a longer time, increasing the potential pool of players whom also will eventually flow to the classic Overlord vs Heroes mode.

 

There's a big difference between a human player who can employ strategy and/or make mistakes and an NPC ( or computer controlled character, whichever you want to call it.) Either the app will spit out random moves or compute the best course of action, but it's really nothing compared to playing with a real live person. This app will not prepare anyone for playing against a real live OL player. 

 

Now as someone who is experienced with not having a play group and is just more or less messing with this game alone, I can tell you flat out that an automated Overlord isn't really neccesary. I've soloed myself though campaigns, usually trying to find the best options on any given turn to make each round interesting. It's not really all that hard to do, with the exception that you're the only one having to look out for all the details. But so what, as long as it's fun. I also DO like the Co-Ops, as they are a challenging way to play the game a bit differently. They have not taken away from the experience, instead they have added on to it.

 

Which is kind of why I'm wondering why we even need an app like this. How come these campaigns can't just be printed out on boards or paper? Why can't Road to Legend itself be a unique Descent expansion that you buy physically? 

 

The problem that I see here is that this could radically change how people play Descent, which is why people like Indalecio feel threatened by the app. They have every right to feel this way, because then what happens if Fantasy Flight decides this is the direction it wants to go and here we are with no real physical support to the tabletop elements anymore? What happens when FF feels that Road to Legend campaigns take precedence over Big/Small Box expansions? 

 

So yes it is a slippery slope as someone mentioned and one that some don't want to be pulled down into. 

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You still have human interaction when using the app, playing with your fellow players face to face cooperatively, so it's not like you're all just watching a screen.

 

No harm in creating different game modes. In fact, it might be a better way to introduce new players to the game by all playing coop using the app. After a campaign, you could go with the classic overlord vs players setup after everybody has become more knowledgeable of the rules and ingame abilities.

 

The overlord will be able to go full stomping mode without feeling bad because some players might not grasp all the rules yet or have the necessary experience yet.

 

I see nothing but good things regarding the app. It will also keep the interest on Descent for a longer time, increasing the potential pool of players whom also will eventually flow to the classic Overlord vs Heroes mode.

 

There's a big difference between a human player who can employ strategy and/or make mistakes and an NPC ( or computer controlled character, whichever you want to call it.) Either the app will spit out random moves or compute the best course of action, but it's really nothing compared to playing with a real live person. This app will not prepare anyone for playing against a real live OL player. 

 

...

 

 

I said that players will become more knowledgeable of the rules and abilities. You're right that it doesn't necessary prepare them against an actual player Overlord, but at least they know the rules well enough so that's 1 step closer.

Edited by Gridash

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FFG should release a game based on Descent to play in video games or pcs, and forget the idea about this app.

There are tactical grid based video games out there, and very good ones! The Fire Emblem series for Gameboy Advance, Gamecube, Wii, Nintendo 3ds, and I bet there will be a WiiU game. There is also the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance series for Gameboy and Nintendo DS. Both are excellent RPG's with a great depth in gameplay. When looking for a boardgame dungeon crawler I took my likings in these games into consideration:)

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I think people are forgetting what this app is trying to do. It is not trying to replace physical gaming for those who cannot dedicate the time. It is simply a way to turn Descent into co-op.

Seriously, if most people don't have the time to get two people to play Descent Second Edition on a regular basis, then board gaming is in trouble. Second Edition already shortened the play time from First, and made a campaign possible with 2 players instead of 5. If people can't get that together, then this app isn't going to save the industry.

This app just provides an automated overlord so people can co-op. It doesn't mean board gaming as a whole needs digital life support. It means AI is better handled by a computer. That's it.

Why do you think co-op is so hot for Descent? It's because sometimes, being the overlord sucks. Everyone is against you. Ever tried playing a real Road to Legend or Sea of Blood campaign as the overlord? It's horrible. Our group survives because the most experienced player is a hero (me) who helps the overlord until he/she no longer needs it.

Our group is made of hardcore traditionalist board gamers who invest hours per week into gaming. And we still would want this app if it were made for first edition.

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Which is kind of why I'm wondering why we even need an app like this. How come these campaigns can't just be printed out on boards or paper? Why can't Road to Legend itself be a unique Descent expansion that you buy physically? 

 

Development of the app has numerous advantages over the printed, physical co-op expansions (in no particular order:

 

1) Setup/cleanup time

2) Ease of pause/resume

3) avoid costs of printing cards for FFG

4) avoid need to print rules for customers

5) avoid shipping costs for everyone

6) hidden information for those who want the dungeon exploration feel

7) incorporation of different monsters/tiles based on what expansions you have to work with

 

None of the opinions I have about the app regarding the lack of human OL are any different for the printed co-op expansions. If Co-op is the direction FFG wants to go with Descent, this companion app looks like a fantastic way to accomplish that. It should really streamline the process and provide a lot of interesting content.

Edited by Zaltyre

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Exciting news!

 

The co-op system they devised in those past packs got very good reviews, and I found it suspicious how "little" they were doing with that afterwards. My guess last year was that a big box co-op expansion was going to be one of the next releases.

 

This seems great. Now I'm hoping again to see new uses for the Nerekhall material. (Their third co-op pack should have been for it, their new hot item, not for LotWyrm!)

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