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 Changing the Rules? Yes or No?

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Asp
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PostSubject: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Sat 7 Mar 2009 - 17:36

OR: Is Asp obsessed with changing the rules?

(...Spoiler: Yes, he is. Razz)

And in this post I will try to give an account of why and also attempt to explain why we often run into difficulties in our discussions.

-----

First of all, one persistent divide seems to be that many users don't feel the need to change the rules at all. Even though most/all users acknowledge that rules could be improved for them it does not necessarily follow that the rules should be improved.

This is entirely honorable.

Personally, though, I tend to enjoy a game more if it is well balanced and offers maximal tactical depth with minimal midgame rulebook flickering.

I also feel that the fans should address the lacking of GW support for the game by taking the rules into their own hands. To my mind, most people have already done so: Even the most GW-loyal gaming group has tons of house rules to clarify the rules. Some people take the matter further and give Handguns S5, for example. Our group takes it the furthest that I know and messy with any and everything that can be messed with if we believe that it will yield a better game.

As I said, this is not every fan's cup of tea and I sincerely respect that. We simply have different tastes, and many questions regarding rules discussions will therefore be stillborn and fruitless and we are simply arguing from different premises.

Obviously, suggestions to change the rules in a dramatic way will not be everyone's cup
of tea but by their very nature, suggestions to change to rules will
primarily be of relevance to people who feel that it is desirable to improve the
rules beyond their current state.

I know that many users don't feel the need to change the rules at all and but the game is almost ten years old and the rules engine was designed over a fairly short period of time. To me, as a rules designer, this means that there are aspects of the engine that could be improved dramatically by implementing the lessons of the past 9 years.

(-1 to hit on dual-wielding, anyone? Karate)

People often say that the core rules are balanced _enough_ and certainly, in a game featuring as much random chance as Mordheim the rules could quite correctly be said to be balanced _enough_. However, for some the enjoyability of the game increases with the state if the rules and that is why I and others persist in our quest.

Hopefully, this knowledge of how players differ should save us some unnecessary miscommunitcation of the future.

Thank you for reading. thumbsup
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Sun 8 Mar 2009 - 5:17

It's small system and everyone interested in it also plays => so everyone is connected with band he plays => so he can be, even a little, subjective when changing rules.
IMHO players fear not to make something better that it should. Fighting to weapons for example and giving it -1 to Hit. Ghouls are tough opponents and with this rule are even better, cause they don't use second weapon. Changing costs also can be tricky when we tak a look on short bow and sling.
First has a range of 16" and costs 5gc. Sling has a range 18", costs 2gc and has also double shoot at close range. Sling>>S.Bow but this is only ranged weapon for sigmarietes and skavens. Conclusion: when you are making overall rule there will be some bugs with specyfical warbands, equipment and skilla......I agree that some have more pros than cons, but for some people this small cons is the most feared thing in the world =)
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Sun 8 Mar 2009 - 6:09

Please note I AM a notorious critique of GW's Designers & Business Ethics [or lack there of Suspect ]. There are QUITE number of House Rules I employ in my solo games. However, there is ONE [& I'll grudgingly admit to more than one Suspect ] MAJOR quality that the Rules as written have, AND that is their UNIVERSAL, though perhaps less than enthusiastically, ACCEPTANCE by the Gaming Community. This factor can be seen in action at the Big Dutch Meetup now in progress, where a fair number of FINE FELLOWS from three countries are having a splendid series of games despite possible language barriers simply because they ARE able to work with an accepted base of rules, maligned though they may well be.

GW's rather disappointing lack of support for all but their BIG $S games IS actually THE REASON, other than localized House Rules, NOT to change the Rules on a more than club level. Having a substantial number of locally accepted "official" new rules would destroy the UNIVERSAL quality; i.e., the ability to go virtually anywhere, throw down the Gauntlet [& gently place your minis], & know ruleswise you & your opponent(s) are on the same page. From my skewed perspective the U.A. Factor IS GW's most notable contribution to the Gaming Community.
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Duce
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 3:57

I think Nala put it right, the simple universal rules keep everyone form different countries ont he same page for playing, only when its local would u beable to make house rules or entire rule reworks like you have Asp and not have problems. on't get em wrong its fun to remake the rules, but you couldnt expect them to take over the origionals for the entire community...

or could you Suspect

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Lanyssa Ryssyll
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 5:41

Yeah, I agree with Deafnala, but there was just one problem's left : the "rules review", doesn't well-known, make sometimes a fuss for just a little bit.
My example is the MagnoliaFan's kislevites warband, with a Druzhina at 80 Gc and a bear at 145 Gc, just because on TC and the .pdf are wrong. It's the same with the "Shaggy hide" skills from Empire in Flames that Matt wants to take...
More than an improvement, I think Mordheim needs a new Universal Rulebook with all these statements changed Smile
Perhaps after that, we can point on the skaven's Strength 4, the handgun (I play it with +1 on injury roll and not Strength 5), the mutations, etc...
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Matumaros
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 9:47

IMHO,
the rules seriously need to be improved.
Lanyssa got it right, to me, Universal Revised Rulebook... and with that in mind i totally agree with what i understand to be Asp's point of view:

- core rule's are balanced enough, but for some the enjoyment of the game increases with the state of the rules

- there are aspects of the game that could be improved dramamtically by implementing the lessons learned in the past 9 years

That said and constantly kept in mind, I'd like a much needed change in some of the core rules which really sucks as they are now (like the warband rating engine, while even Necromunda offers an example of how it could be better), and a complete revision of warbands, with more options, balance and updated stats, special rules, etc... It's been 9 years playing the same bands, while WHFB has changed from 5th to 7th edition, and a new WHFRP edition came out too.

All of that without turning much beloved Mordheim in a new, different game.
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Ezekiel
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 10:22

Allthough I really think there could be a lot of improvements in the game... (we changed quite a bit during the meeting, and had a blast with that) there is in my opinion one Major problem with creating a new ruleset which would be universal as well put by nala.

How do you agree on what to change? every little comunity has their own prefered changes/house rules/ directions in which to take the game.

In our last game this weekend, JohnYoung, Eliazar and me added a lot of random encounters/missions and NPCs, which made for a fun game in our eyes, and we three agreed that there should be more options like that But I know of people at our local club who really dislike the random encounters.

This is just one example, but I can think of many more (try agreeing on wether or not to use the optional rules for critical hits...) there are just too many opinions to change this uiversally... and therefore there cannot yet be one major authority on this game other than GW... and we will have to restrict our global desires to house rules... sad as that might be...

but none the less, we from 4 different countries, and different parts of countries, still managed to get along fine in the rulesets, and added houserules from all parties involved...
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Lanyssa Ryssyll
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 10:38

I said "universally" just because the Rules Review + Empire in Flames + Mordheim Annual 2002 are "official" (from GW), with exceptions (the shadow elves warband for example).
I think the first thing to do is to have the same base, a compiled rulebook with rules clarified by some Q&A from TC and Mordheim Annual, and no more 3 or 4 books separately.
Nobody can say that they are not "official", they just can continue to play as they used to, but it's their matter, point.

After that, we can discuss about optionnal rules, like Random Encounters, Blackpowder weapons or Advanced Critical Hits... And perhaps we can find some usefull rules that all of us are convinced they are good, but IMHO it's in a second part. Finally, to modify the core rules, like Asp's gaming group do, is a complete different exercice, and is far from what we have to do in a community from different country, with different experiences of the game...
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 14:17

I'm completely biased towards new Mordheim Settings (mostly 'cause I like making them tongue ), but to me, THAT is the best method of both testing new revisions as well as, for a fixed setting only, have a new revision of rules.

For example: In Border Town Burning, all Magic users have +1 added to their rolls, and a misfire chart. There are no restrictions on the number of mounts.

Example2: In relics of the crusade, blackpowder weapons are not allowed.

Example3: In Sartosa, Blackpowder rules are always used, with the reduced prices.

Rather than forcing a set standard on ALL of Mordheim, make an isolated environment with the stand rules of your group, and see if it catches on. Also, rather than introducing these rules in the middle of a campaign, it sets up a brand new campaign with new rules right from the get-go.

In your case, Asp, maybe make a special setting that reinforces fluff wise your amended rules for weapons.
Ex. You set a campaign in the foothills of the Grey Mountains, where all of the local smiths are skilled Dwarves. No Dwarf worth his gold would sell a finely-crafted hammer for less than 5gc... however, his halberds are more balanced (strike first) and the Muskets are stronger.
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 15:05

StyrofoamKing wrote:
In Border Town Burning, all Magic users have +1 added to their rolls, and a misfire chart.

Actually this is only true for the Northern Wastes - one of numerous territories of the setting. Smile

Anyways, you are making an excellent point and I completely agree with all you just said. thumbsup

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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 15:25

I think the problem is that now, as the official support is dropped and even the RR stuff etc. are not really published in a way everyone notices or could just download the newest rulebooks and have it right makes it so confusing, as Lanyssa pointed out. And with all the changes only being house rules, it's even worse.

However, I think it's best to simply agree on stuff with your gaming group to make the games more fun, post it online to inspire people, but don't bother if not everyone likes it - and on the other hand don't get crazy when someone is inventing new rules all the time, even though you deem it unnecessary.

Also, if GW suddenly revived their support for the Specialist Games and updated all the rules with suggestions and supposed fixes, it would be too late now, as everyone has their houserules and would never part with them just because GW thought they'd release a new rulebook. I remember there being 3 different suggestions on the Armour and Dual Wielding issue, and I bet if GW was to make one official, the groups who tested all and found one of the others better would not care at all.

To me, Mordheim is a great game as it is (even with the old, printed rulebook). The fixes etc. make it more balanced, but it's not completely off and not manageable. For example, this weekend we played with simultaneous turns a la LotR, and I think I will now always try to convince my opponent to play by these rules, but still could enjoy a game following the normal Mordheim rules.

(I hope this is not too confusing)
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Asp
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PostSubject: Re: Changing the Rules? Yes or No?   Mon 9 Mar 2009 - 16:33

Quote :
For example, this weekend we played with simultaneous turns a la LotR

Please explain this in another post Smile
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