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RoosterOnAWire

Furball Questions (from Worlds)

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For those who participated in or observed one of the Furball games at Worlds, a couple of questions:

 

1.) Any sense of how long the games took?

2.) Was there any prize support?

 

We're looking at doing something like this at one of my FLGS's and I'm trying to not miss any important details. Thanks in advance!

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I was able to do two of them.  Its was rather laid back, and with talking between a lot of people it took up to 2 hrs before time was called (I had soontir left against 3? X wings).  The other game only took about an hour, but with the dice the imp's wiped the rebels while only take 1 HP.  I even got to see Maarek's ability come into play since my buddy took him with marksmanship :P.  Its pretty fun since its not real serious so you can try out named pilots you wouldn't otherwise take.

 

For those that don't know: Furbal was an event where each person had 30pts to take a single small ship with whatever upgrades could fit.  Note that you cannot share points to your teammates if you were short.  You then do a 4v4 game, and I believe it was on a 4' by 4' table with 8 asteroids.

 

I would suggest a turn timer (or something like max 5min to lock in dials), since trying to coordinate 4 people at once was a little more chaotic, but definitely fun.  I would also put like an 1 and 30min or less time limit on it.  If someone gets focused on the first engagement and gets knocked out, they have to stand around for another hour before the game is over.

 

There wasn't any prize support, it was a single table side event.  But I would definitely go for it, with perhaps something small for each player of the winning side.  Oh, and you kinda need a judge or someone there, helps keep things moving and can make the really close calls (plus he can keep track of the pilot skills order, which can definitely get forgotten).

Edited by Texx

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Texx,

 

why would you suggest the need for a 5 minute time for this event (as opposed to a typical 100 pt tourney)?  I would think that with only one ship to worry about (and thus, only one dial to set) that time would be less of a factor than having to set 3-8 dials by yourself.

 

Chris

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If I read Texx correctly, it isn't so much one dial being set as four people conferring about how to coordinate their dials since they are all on the same side trying to accomplish the best movement results. That's what I got out of it anyway - and that makes sense that it would take a while with so many different styles/preferences towards playing this game :)

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I joined in on 3 furball games and i found hem to be very fun. The time took about an hour and 15 min. I found it to be the most fun when myself and the 3 other players conffered on our ideas of what to do, but did not decide each others dial.

 

I have one major complaint, the 30 point limit is very fun to work with, except you will always see soontir, Vader and Turr on the empire side. main reason being its tough to get howlrunner or back stabber to the 30 point max. for rebels its easy to get a rookie pilot to 30 points, or Dutch or any other pilot. But with the empire theres only 3 pilots who can reach that with ease. (also bombers can reach this limit aswell)

 

I would suggest 1 of 2 changes to this format- 1:No named pilots for eaither team, OR 2: all named standard tie fighter pilots get an eliet upgrade.

 

just my thoughts on furball, but all in all i LOVED this game type.

Edited by Silver leader

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I joined in on 3 furball games and i found hem to be very fun. The time took about an hour and 15 min. I found it to be the most fun when myself and the 3 other players conffered on our ideas of what to do, but did not decide each others dial.

 

I have one major complaint, the 30 point limit is very fun to work with, except you will always see soontir, Vader and Turr on the empire side. main reason being its tough to get howlrunner or back stabber to the 30 point max. for rebels its easy to get a rookie pilot to 30 points, or Dutch or any other pilot. But with the empire theres only 3 pilots who can reach that with ease. (also bombers can reach this limit aswell)

 

I would suggest 1 of 2 changes to this format- 1:No named pilots for eaither team, OR 2: all named standard tie fighter pilots get an eliet upgrade.

 

just my thoughts on furball, but all in all i LOVED this game type.

 

I did one, yes we did have Turr and Soontir, NOT vader though.

We were instead running Jonus (friend of mine) and I ran a Scimitar with missiles :)

 

It was a LOT of fun. I'm gonna run this again when I get the chance.

Having 8 people at the same place at the same time is hard though.

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Tex, ManOnAWire,

 

I can see your point but just want to say that it must be an issue with who you are gaming with.  Multi-player games are the standard in this neck of the woods, vice 1 V 1/Tournament-style play.  It's a game about fighter pilots... in space...  just make a decision and live with it (or die with it).  Table talk should be OK (I mean, X-wings and TIEs have radios, right ? ;) ) but ultimately, fighter combat is about snap reactions.  If you want to put a time limit on this, give them 30-seconds (at most) to set their dials (they only have one), they can chat throughout the rest of the game phases as long as they are not wasting time.  Or set a scenario with some sort of "Comms Jammer" that prevents any soort of "chatter" and each pilot has to do their best to anticipate the moves of their friends and foes, alike, without being able to directly communicate with them.  Kind of like the silent version of the old game "Pit". 

 

Must be something about Tourney gamers (and I mean no disrespect here) that they play it much more like a "game" (like chess or mahjong) than a wargame/simulation/role-playing game in that they have to make the "perfect move" (to prove their superior intellect, I suppose) rather than putting themselves in the "pilot's" shoes and just "flying" their ship.  Regular tourney-style players of this game don't know how to deal with the "Fog of War" (because the rules are specifically written that way) and not having perfect intelligence about every aspect of their own AND enemy force strength and capabilities.  I mean, how would you really know who is flying that TIE fighter or if that X-wing is loaded with torpedoes or not?  In scenario/"fun" games (even better in multi-player games) you can do this.  Rarely, in the "real" world do you have all the info about the enemy or situation you find yourself in (I suppose that this is similar to planning for a tournament, though) so you load up your fighters with what  you think they will need (or what's available) and scramble them to meet the foe.  You do the best with what you got.  The test of skill is in reacting to what you end up facing (again, this is somewhat like planning for a tournament). 

 

I guess, I just find it "cheezy" to be able to look over at my opponents cards and know which pilot is flying which ship (and thus their special in-game abilities), what ordnance they are carrying, how much damage they have sustained and what critical hits effects they are currently suffering.  In other words, I know everything about my opponent except what maneuver he is going to execute.  I guess that this is why X-wing is a miniatures GAME and not a WARGAME. :o   Again... Interesting...

 

Anyway... this started as an observation about the different way different gamers view and think about the game.  I see several camps:

  • Gamers- who play the GAME and try to get the most out of every rule and gimick in it.  They don't seem to care about fluff or "why" they are fighting; they live for the "thrill of the kill".  Knowledge is power, so they set themselves to know all that they can about the game and their opponent, this is the path to victory!  Ignorance is defeat.  There is no such thing as "fog of war" because this isn't war, it is a game.
  • Wargamers- who look at it as an interesting "tactical" situation and try to play the game with what makes sense in the "real world".  Substitute X-wings for Tiger tanks, give me my mission and get out of my way.  Wargamers want to know "why" they are fighting and thus probably prefer scenarios. Wargamers would never use the term "meta". "Fog of war" is the normal, expected, state of their gaming experience.  In fact, too much knowledge just seems plain wrong to them... like cheating...
  • Role-players- who are into it because of the characters and story (they get to "be" their favorite SW hero/villain).  Fluff is very important to them.  They wish that there was a way to create new characters and follow them through their careers.  They also enjoy scenario play more than straight 100pt tournaments. 
  • "Occasional Gamers"- who differ primarilly from the first group in that they think a lot less (or less effectively, anyway) about the game and its mechanics/meta.  If they care at all about what makes a good list, they will post the question on the forums asking for "a good list" rather than reading all the myriad of other posts on "the most awsome 100 point list ever" or (heaven forfend) think about it themselves and experiment.  OK, I guess there are two sub-sets of this group: those for whom victory is important and those for whome playing the game is most important.

I mean this, not as criticism of particular play styles but as an interesting observation of how different players think and feel about this game; what it represents to them and why THEY play it.  Most players will fall into more than one group to differing degrees, kind of like those Meyers-Briggs personality tests. 

 

 

Thanks for letting me share the voices in my head :) I think you can see which group I mainly fall into :)

 

Chris

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I played a few games of Fur balls and it was a lot of fun.  It does take a little more time as you have to confer with your team mates.  In my 3rd game, we added the following option for the Imperial players.  We let 1 player on the Imp side run 30 pts of Tie Fighters.  This opened a lot of options.  In our game one player ran Howlrunner, and a Academy tie.  This opened up the list options while still maintained a good play balance.

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Ya, I guess a timer for the whole turn might be too constricting.  But I would hold to the timer for locking in dials, since it is really to get the 'too many cooks in the kitchen' happening.  Especially when you are sitting around watching for 10min before you get to do something else.  Since there was mention of prize support, it would be even easier for people to get more competitive with it, thus the dial time would be more helpful (to keep the game moving).

 

I would also suggest trying it once or twice with your friends, see how it works for you guys.  I think it would still work well with 3 vs 3, although I would then stick to the 3' by 3' board. 

 

Oh and I like the idea of allowing 1 person to take 2 Tie Fighters.  It is really easy for everyone imperial to go straight to interceptor.  I think the named Ties would work well, they just can't use up enough points to be quite worth it.  Unless your team REALLY wants initiative.

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When playing furball at 30 points it does make it hard for the Imperial side.  It only leaves the Advanced, bomber and interceptor to play with, and really only leaves the named interceptors until the Imperial Aces pack comes out. 

 

If you are tired of having too many unique pilots, then you can lower the point limit to 25.

 

Regardless of the point limit, you really do need to allow an option of two tie fighters to give the empire armies some variety.

 

At my local store we have run a 30 point furball free-for-all a few times.  The first player to get to kills wins.  In a few months I will run this for a quick demo at a convention using 25 points.  I will have 8 ships set up around the 3x3 playmat and have players controlling one ship.  They can jump in at any turn and play until they are destroyed.

Edited by Magnus3740

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