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Wakomski

New Wiz-War player asks- WHY?!

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I have purchased Wiz-War recently. 

I wanted to get it before, but I was never sure if it as worth it, due to low popularity of this game. Basically there aren't to many reviews or websites describing it, I play board games 1-2 a week with people that had played like 300 different board game titles, and non of them saw Wiz-War in action.

Nevertheless, last week I got it and we decided to give it a go. We were very surprised, the game is GREAT, fast, a lot of action, and THE spells. We spend whole evening playing it (and we had a could dozens other games at hand to choose from), so no bad feat. 

To me the game has very strong Terry Pratchett theme. It would be enough to write a short introduction, that the game takes place in Unseen University and we have a game meant for Discworld :)

So my question is- Why?! Why is this game not popular? FFG published two expansions that increases the replayability, it is easy to explain the rules to new players, the artworks are great and the game itself is lots of fun. I simply cannot comprehend why is it not played more often or FFG marketing does not try to popularize the game more. 

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The game is very old.  It was originally produced in the  80s I think.  And like most games that FFG takes over and rereleases, it doesn't get much press.  The game is great, and has the bones of games that would come after it (like magic:the gathering), and is a very beloved game from the crowd that already knew it, so I'm guessing they feel they don't need to "sell" it much, as it already has a fan base (like me.  I agree that more people should try it.

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This game has been in print for thirty years and is frequently discussed on BGG and reddit.

That it has remained in print for so long is a testament to its popularity and how good it is.

Richard Garfield cites this game as his inspiration for Magic: The Gathering.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/3/2017 at 5:52 PM, Wakomski said:

So my question is- Why?! Why is this game not popular?... I simply cannot comprehend why is it not played more often or FFG marketing does not try to popularize the game more. 

While I agree it's a shame that Wiz-War is not more popular, it also isn't shocking that it lacks the interest fans believe it should have.

In this day and age, games that have such direct confrontation aren't popular.  This isn't a co-op or multi player solitaire game which typically gets lauded on sites such as BGG.

It requires a bit more from players. It celebrates creativity of players within the design space. You have to know how the design works in order to play the game fluently. You also need to appreciate schadenfreude and a sense of humor at your own expense. 

Not a lot of contemporary games are like that, and not a lot of gamers enjoy this.

Games like Survive! even struggle for popularity, and it requires far less from participants.

It takes a particular brand of consumer as well. CCG players have an easier time acclimating since they are accustomed to using creativity within a design space to accomplish their goals. But even then, the first couple game are rough as you internalize the cards and the potential they offer. 

It's a lot more daunting for non CCG players. 

That's makes this a niche game within a niche market.

But, FFG were confident enough in it to not only aquire the license from Chessex before it expired, but to produce 2 more expansions for the game.

But it will be a shame for others, who much like you, found out that the game is quite good, only to find it out of print. All because more people didn't buy it enough and FFG decided to let it go out of production due to it not being as popular as Star Wars.

 

[Edit] As for FFG's lack of promotion, this has long been an issue with FFG. They feed into what is already popular, not what needs help to become popular. 

All it takes is an occasional article posted on their site promoting older and/or less popular titles to possibly increase sales for an item.

But they haven't done that as long as I recall. They promote only upon new release and then move on to the next thing thrown against the wall to see if it sticks without any help. It's frustrating, but that's how they seem to market stuff.

 

Edited by Hellfury

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I have an older copy of the game when it was being published by Chessex.  I also played it online back when TEN was in existence.

I only recently discovered that FFG had acquired the publishing rights so I missed out on picking it up.  As it is, the prices on the secondary market for the game have prohibited my ablity to be able to purchase it to see what had been updated.  So, it goes without saying that I would like to see FFG release a re-issue of the game.

 

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