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Buddy Bear
04-08-2015, 05:38
Who do you think, in Warhammer Fantasy's long history, has done the best job of creating great rules for the game? Who've been the most talented games designers to be associated with Warhammer?

Nialag
04-08-2015, 06:00
Alessio Cavatore. Ironically, his crowning work came through not in Warhammer proper, but in creating a well-balanced skirmish level game for a tertiary product that languished in GWs hands.

drfaust176
04-08-2015, 06:07
Alessio Cavatore. Ironically, his crowning work came through not in Warhammer proper, but in creating a well-balanced skirmish level game for a tertiary product that languished in GWs hands.
Fully agreed. Also loved Andy Chambers, and Gav Thorpe had some really good material (Digganob, anyone?).

Not to be dense and off-topic, but which game are you talking about?

Nialag
04-08-2015, 06:08
Lord of the Rings. Tight, tight ruleset. I wish I had bought in more, but what held me back was the IP; Tolkiens world just never really appealed to me.

Buddy Bear
04-08-2015, 06:10
Fully agreed. Also loved Andy Chambers, and Gav Thorpe had some really good material (Digganob, anyone?).

Not to be dense and off-topic, but which game are you talking about?

Warhammer Fantasy. I'm wondering who everyone thinks has done the best work for Warhammer Fantasy.

drfaust176
04-08-2015, 06:23
Warhammer Fantasy. I'm wondering who everyone thinks has done the best work for Warhammer Fantasy.
Ah, sorry. Got Chambers and Hoare mixed up. Not an uncommon occurrence in my mind. Really liked Andy Hoare's work on the lizardmen.

Nialag
04-08-2015, 06:33
218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

Ben
04-08-2015, 07:07
Rick Priestley, Nigel Stillman, Andy Chambers.

Kherith
04-08-2015, 08:28
Probably Gav Thorpe I did give him some stick for 6th ed dark elves on the gw forum (yes they had one once) but at least he fixed it with a proper errata.

I know a lot of people have issues with 7th ed dark elves but the background and rules he developed have shaped the style and character of my favourite army.

Not sure how he feels about the Aelf Exiles and elves appearing to be merged going forward. I suspect he would not forgive and he would not forget...

Tokamak
04-08-2015, 08:30
Yeah I like Gav Thorpe. He's also been really committed with the Chronicles and errata.


218152

Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

That's amazing. Never saw that before.

A big problem was the power creep during 7th edition. That horribly imbalanced the armies. I think part of the problem (besides cynical marketing) was that individual designers with different philosophies each worked on their own books. You can't balance a game on that structure.

Kherith
04-08-2015, 08:50
218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

I actually think it's more likely that aos would still have happened but both End Times and Aos would have been superior products that United the fanbase rather than dividing it.

Also as a crimson fist player you gotta love a guy who shares a name with Captain Cortez. Sometimes I imagine him shoving a grenade down Kirby's throat after having an arm ripped off ;)

Geep
04-08-2015, 10:16
Alessio Cavatore and Rick Priestley would have to be my top two, though the others previously mentioned all had excellent moments.

Pacman
04-08-2015, 10:35
Tuomas Pirinen for his work on rebalancing the game and killing off Herohammer, and Rick Priestley for his great writing and sense of humour. Allessio Cavatore gets an honourable mention, some of his stuff was great, some was a bit pants.

Greyshadow
04-08-2015, 10:51
Bryan Ansell, Richard Halliwell, Rick Priestly - for the original game, the underlying core mechanics were inspired and stood the test of time. (The rules for the giant barely changed from the first ever White Dwarf rules article to the end of 8th for example).

Alessio Cavatore - the father of the modern era of the game, he tidied up the game immensely and made the first edition to be truly compatible with tournament play, in my humble opinion.

Matt Ward - The principle author of the best edition of the game ever - 8th Edition! :) I know there will be some who will want to deride me about this comment but to me he made it more about risk management and less about set pieces in the movement phase. (I could go on and on about all the things that I love about 8th).

ScruffMan
04-08-2015, 12:27
I think from the late 80's and almost all through the 90's they had very good designers. They definitely made mistakes but they also tended to make sure they sorted them (remember FAQ's in WD, people would be asking about the wording of things in the previous months release and yes it was the lead designer taking the questions), you just felt like these were the biggest fans and players of the game making it. Priestly is the God. Chambers, Thorpe, Johnson and countless others all did loads of great work too though.

employed
04-08-2015, 12:34
218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.
Wow just wow. I really love some of the articles from WD from the late 2000-2005 where people talk about the game as it is alive. With new histories why they choose a their army style, or how they painted the army. This is Warhammer for me. Not the WD what only works as a toycatalog.

zoggin-eck
04-08-2015, 15:03
As said already, and it should go without saying - Bryan Ansell, Richard Halliwell and Rick Priestly (and Nigel Stillman).

Still a fan of Andy Chambers, Gav Thorpe, Jervis Johnson and others like Alessio and Tuomas.

(Special mention to Papa Steve Anastasoff for his brill Goblin army collecting article :))

ScruffMan
04-08-2015, 15:49
As said already, and it should go without saying - Bryan Ansell, Richard Halliwell and Rick Priestly (and Nigel Stillman).

Still a fan of Andy Chambers, Gav Thorpe, Jervis Johnson and others like Alessio and Tuomas.

(Special mention to Papa Steve Anastasoff for his brill Goblin army collecting article :))


Anastasoff! I hear these names from the past that hadn't crossed my mind in years and I feel 15 again. Frankly it's horrible. :P

Sothron
04-08-2015, 16:29
Didn't Phil Kelly do the Vampire Counts 6th army book that gave us Bloodlines? I have to put him on that list just for that reason. I agree with the names being tossed about so far, especially Thorpe, Chambers and Alessio.

Tokamak
04-08-2015, 17:21
Wow just wow. I really love some of the articles from WD from the late 2000-2005 where people talk about the game as it is alive. With new histories why they choose a their army style, or how they painted the army. This is Warhammer for me. Not the WD what only works as a toycatalog.

Yeah in those years it was mainly WD keeping me involved and excited. It felt like an unofficial fan magazine which was a huge plus. I bet it costed more to make than it does now though. You needed an actual redaction of enthushiasts rather than a few copywriters and a photgorapher.

fantasypisces
04-08-2015, 17:35
Andy Chambers (he seemed like a character), Alessio Cavatore (some of his latest work has been hit or miss, I feel), and Rick Priestly (who I am now getting to experience again with Warlord games products). Gav Thorpe was decent from time to time, and I give him kudos for working with the Dark Elf community to update one of their army books when the previous one was a huge let down.

Okuto
04-08-2015, 18:00
Alessio, but more so cause he wrote the Dogs of War ruleset and I enjoyed playing that army

snyggejygge
04-08-2015, 18:58
Alessio Cavatore & Tuomas Pirinen, their work with warhammer 6:th edition to change from herohammer to what is imo the best warhammer ruleset ever what very impressive, when used with Ravening Hordes it was next to perfect.

Griefbringer
04-08-2015, 19:39
Rick Priestley seems to be the one with the longest term contribution, having appeared amongst the authors up to the 6th edition rulebook. After that his focus seemed to shift elsewhere, though I haven't checked if his name appears in any of the 6th edition army books.

Kyriakin
04-08-2015, 19:46
What did that Adrian guy do? The fella who was obsessed with Orks...

I should have asked him when I got his autograph at Games Day 1996.

Avian
04-08-2015, 19:52
I think that was mostly White Dwarf.

logan054
04-08-2015, 20:56
Rick Priestley, Nigel Stillman, Andy Chambers.

Can't really disagree with these choices.


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Bingo the Fun Monkey
15-08-2015, 02:24
Didn't Phil Kelly do the Vampire Counts 6th army book that gave us Bloodlines? I have to put him on that list just for that reason. I agree with the names being tossed about so far, especially Thorpe, Chambers and Alessio.
Actually, that was Alessio Cavatore. I remember reading the designer's notes in white dwarf where he mentioned two other bloodlines to be released later. Guess it never happened :(

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Just Tony
15-08-2015, 02:44
Yet nobody put Pete Haines. Odd.



I'd throw in everyone who made 6th Ed. a reality. Except for that whole Chaos debacle. And Intrigue at Court. That rule sucked and was pointless.

Athelassan
16-08-2015, 16:55
Rick Priestley and Richard Halliwell. I don't know if Bryan Ansell can be considered a designer but his influence was obviously significant. Of those that came a little later, Nigel Stillman and Andy Chambers (though I don't think he did a massive amount of fantasy work?). Tuomas Pirinen and Alessio Cavatore were ok, although I found their stuff tended to be more tournament-oriented and a little "blander" than what came before. I think that's culture shift more than anything else though, so they probably can't be blamed too much.

I like some of Jervis's work on other games but I can't recall anything in particular he did for fantasy.

In background terms, it's all about Graeme Davis.

Kingrick
16-08-2015, 17:49
what about Jeremy Vetock? co-author to the general's compendium!

Captain Idaho
16-08-2015, 21:51
Chambers, Pirinen, Haines, McNeil and Cavatore.

Jervis seems to go out of his way to make bland and simplified rules. His Dark Angels were universally loathed. It was under his management Chaos ended up like it did in 40K (though he didn't write the book in 4th) and he has been behind AoS too. At least, Pirinen has mentioned he saw the Sudden Death rules as having JJ all over it.

Ultimately I am not sure how I feel about Jervis. He seems to love the hobby if you speak to him, but he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one. His article, though out of date perhaps, shows this and his rules support it.

Captain Idaho
16-08-2015, 21:53
Chambers, Pirinen, Haines, McNeil and Cavatore.

Jervis seems to go out of his way to make bland and simplified rules. His Dark Angels were universally loathed. It was under his management Chaos ended up like it did in 40K (though he didn't write the book in 4th) and he has been behind AoS too. At least, Pirinen has mentioned he saw the Sudden Death rules as having JJ all over it.

Ultimately I am not sure how I feel about Jervis. He seems to love the hobby if you speak to him, but he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one. His article, though out of date perhaps, shows this and his rules support it.

Inquisitor Kallus
16-08-2015, 22:38
Ultimately I am not sure how I feel about Jervis. He seems to love the hobby if you speak to him, but he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one.

Absolute garbage. He has never, ever implied 'his' way of playing and approaching and collecting the hobby is the right one. It's obvious you're more than a little butt hurt by the current fantasy/AOS situation. Even in his articles he merely puts forward an older approach to the way of gaming, hoping that it wont be lost because of the tournament/competitive scene.


I think every designer has given some decent input, and quite a few of them in different ways, from narrative to rules wise. I believe each edition had it gems because of certain ways of playing. I think Rick Priestly, Jervis, Alessio and Tuomas PPirinen were amongst some of my favourites

Captain Idaho
16-08-2015, 22:52
Maybe you should read his article about what he deems damaging to the hobby.

And maybe you should check his hated Codex books that everyone hated.

It's logical he had an input on AoS he's the head of strategy at GW god's sake!

the beardless dwarf
16-08-2015, 22:58
Matthew Ward by far. What he brought to the WFB wil never be forgotten.

Just Tony
16-08-2015, 23:15
Chambers, Pirinen, Haines, McNeil and Cavatore.

Jervis seems to go out of his way to make bland and simplified rules. His Dark Angels were universally loathed. It was under his management Chaos ended up like it did in 40K (though he didn't write the book in 4th) and he has been behind AoS too. At least, Pirinen has mentioned he saw the Sudden Death rules as having JJ all over it.

Ultimately I am not sure how I feel about Jervis. He seems to love the hobby if you speak to him, but he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one. His article, though out of date perhaps, shows this and his rules support it.

You're serious? He did the Dwarfs 6th/7th book, the one that made the Anvil of Doom unstoppable, amongst other things. He's also responsible for making me feel guilty about playing Iron Warriors.

Captain Idaho
16-08-2015, 23:26
Yeah but it was fun for the most part, his Codex Chaos Space Marines. That book is largely considered the best book of its time.

Then Chambers left and GW systematically reversed everything that was good about 40K.

Inquisitor Kallus
16-08-2015, 23:52
Maybe you should read his article about what he deems damaging to the hobby.

And maybe you should check his hated Codex books that everyone hated.

It's logical he had an input on AoS he's the head of strategy at GW god's sake!

Head of GW strategy? AHA HAAAA HAA! Where do you get all this rubbish from?
Hated hated codex books ey? Hilarious
People liked or were not overly worried about the DA codex UNTIL the next MArine codex came out, which upped the stakes. It wasnt badly written or anything, people hated that the DA seemed so underpowered compared to the new SM dex with the traits and other bonuses to weapons and equipment which they already had (i.e. Storm Shield). It seemed a bit bland in comparison, but wasnt greatly disliked beforehand.

Yeah ive read his article about what he deems to be damaging to the hobby. Now go find a quote in there that specifically states he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one.Then come back and share with everyone....

Dosiere
17-08-2015, 00:43
I must say that little piece about the spirit of the game from Alessio is great. its the kind of thing an actual gamer would both write and understand. I often wonder if the people writing the rules these days at GW are actually playing the games.

Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 07:18
Head of GW strategy? AHA HAAAA HAA! Where do you get all this rubbish from?
Hated hated codex books ey? Hilarious
People liked or were not overly worried about the DA codex UNTIL the next MArine codex came out, which upped the stakes. It wasnt badly written or anything, people hated that the DA seemed so underpowered compared to the new SM dex with the traits and other bonuses to weapons and equipment which they already had (i.e. Storm Shield). It seemed a bit bland in comparison, but wasnt greatly disliked beforehand.

Yeah ive read his article about what he deems to be damaging to the hobby. Now go find a quote in there that specifically states he believes his way of playing and approaching the hobby is the correct one.Then come back and share with everyone....

Believe what you will. I could go on about my experience with wholesale Codex rejection from another popular forum or real life, or how adding evidence together equals conclusion, or how JJ IS a strategy manager, but I doubt you'd listen.

GW wont care about your apologist attitude and give you a job though.

GrandmasterWang
17-08-2015, 08:45
Believe what you will. I could go on about my experience with wholesale Codex rejection from another popular forum or real life, or how adding evidence together equals conclusion, or how JJ IS a strategy manager, but I doubt you'd listen.

GW wont care about your apologist attitude and give you a job though.

I don't think he wants you to go on and on....I think he just wants you to actually back up what you are saying which thus far you have failed to do.

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Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 09:42
Yeah I'm not going to go searching through archived posts going back years or write to GW to get confirmation of the staff hierarchy because someone on the Internet doesn't believe me.

Whatever. Put your fingers in your ears and defend someone who has destroyed Warhammer (or at least contributed to it) and has a history of releases to his name that have flopped.

Believe it or not. What do I care? I'm at work and have limited free time, so whilst I'll engage in discussion, I'm not going to bust a gut justifying everything I post.

boli
17-08-2015, 09:43
Whoever did bloodbowl tbh - sure it had some faults but the original rule books were hilarious :) (and then they released tournament (balanced) rules!

can't think of a more complete game...

AmaroK
17-08-2015, 09:48
Maybe you should read his article about what he deems damaging to the hobby.

And maybe you should check his hated Codex books that everyone hated.

It's logical he had an input on AoS he's the head of strategy at GW god's sake!

That article, that is 13 years old btw, do not say his way is the correct one. He says that the tournament style was becoming more and more prevalent (which is true) and that the game is not about competition (and he must know a bit about what the game is about as a creator and lead designer). If there would be D&D tournaments, you could expect any of its creator saying a word or two about it, isnīt it? But he also say tournament games have their place, you seem to forget that.

Besides, what everybody hate his books? I do not hate them, so do not talk on my behalf. And what about the games he made? Bloodbowl, NetEpic, fantasy 8th and so on. Are they so terrible? Because I know many many people who love them (and myself as well)

Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 10:08
That article, that is 13 years old btw, do not say his way is the correct one. He says that the tournament style was becoming more and more prevalent (which is true) and that the game is not about competition (and he must know a bit about what the game is about as a creator and lead designer). If there would be D&D tournaments, you could expect any of its creator saying a word or two about it, isnīt it? But he also say tournament games have their place, you seem to forget that.

Besides, what everybody hate his books? I do not hate them, so do not talk on my behalf. And what about the games he made? Bloodbowl, NetEpic, fantasy 8th and so on. Are they so terrible? Because I know many many people who love them (and myself as well)

You need to read JJ designer notes in Epic Armageddon. He reveals he was totally wrong with how he built Epic 40K as people didn't like his abstract, simplified approach.

And Blood Bowl? What that Monsters of Midway rip off? But it's okay because JJ denied it.

It's a case of collating the evidence. His Epic Armageddon designer notes, his Codex Dark Angels and Chaos Space Marines, his attitude to competitive gamers (thinly veiled contempt), his senior position within the company when all the other developers left, Andy Chambers criticising GW...

It all adds up.

Oh and the game is not about competition? So all the people who want that shouldn't play the game then?

Typing / copy and paste error. I meant the game Mutant league Football.

Link here for those interested https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mutant_League_Football

Similar concepts to Bloodbowl.

Now to elaborate before someone says "yeah but the rules are tight etc" I'd like to say yes, it proves my point. Jervis makes reasonable games that focus on simplified rule sets. Which again points to his hand in AoS.

Athelassan
17-08-2015, 11:07
And Blood Bowl? What that Monsters of Midway rip off? But it's okay because JJ denied it.
I'm not sure this has any real validity, to be honest. Of course, it is possible that Blood Bowl was inspired by Monsters of the Midway (although I wonder how well-known MotM, with its single-edition publication in one issue of a magazine, was in the mid-80s and whether the only reason anyone's heard of it is the success of Blood Bowl several years later). But then the same could be levelled at Dreadball for ripping off Blood Bowl, or Warhammer Fantasy for ripping off every other fantasy game in the previous history of the universe. Inspiration doesn't equal plagiarism.

In any case the rules themselves are so different, even at the time of first edition and certainly by the time you get to third, that from a game-design perspective (which is after all what's relevant for this thread) any carry-over doesn't extend far if at all and an accusation of "rip-off" is somewhere between "misinformed" and "deliberate misconstruction".

I'm not sure what Jervis did to you, but it sounds like you have an irrational dislike for him and are intent on framing everything in the worst possible light. For a GW designer to admit they made a mistake with a previous edition and have made changes accordingly (as Jervis has done at least twice, wrt Epic 40K and Blood Bowl 4) is the sort of thing we're now crying out for their designers to do. It's worth noting too that Epic 40K wasn't actually in isolation a bad system (iirc it won awards); it just wasn't what the market wanted after the complexity of Space Marine, hence the revisions. It wasn't a case of bad ruleswriting so much as a misjudgment of the playerbase.

Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 11:17
No it's not irrational. It's a case where all the evidence points to a certain direction. Calling it irrational is again attacking the man.

If people want to defend each individual thing then that's fine, but the more excuses you need the more alarm bells ring.

And like I said, Bloodbowl being well crafted illustrates my point - it suits a simplistic and quick style of play as by its nature it's a skirmish game. This doesn't mean the author automatically is a god of games design. It means he's able to create neat little skirmish games at least as a one off.

Epic 40K might have won awards but it flopped despite substantial support from GW. This means people didn't like it. Are they all wrong?

Denny
17-08-2015, 11:47
I think JJ's contempt for competitive play is pretty clearly revealed in AoS, why else design a game that cannot be played competitively?

I don't get the "JJ hates competitive gamer" mantra. :wtf:

I assume we are all referring to the same article where JJ notes that fantasy is increasing being played competitively, and that the game was never really designed for this, and doing so may cause problems with the game?
If I designed a chair and then noted that some people were standing on the chair to reach high shelves and that this might not be a good idea as the chair had not been designed for this purpose, would the internet therefore concluded that I have only contempt for people who keep things on high shelves?

. . . Well, actually yeah it probably would, so there goes that argument. ;)

Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 11:55
Are you talking about your own posts, or those of Cptn Idaho?

I think JJ's contempt for competitive play is pretty clearly revealed in AoS, why else design a game that cannot be played competitively? IMO JJ is a cancer at the heart of the design studio, the sooner he leaves the sooner GW has an outside chance of producing a game without awful rules. I suggest that a lot of problems that get laid at he feet of Mr Kirby are probably more correctly laid at Jervis' door, it remains to be seen whether JJ's influence can be excised without killing the whole company.

I agree he is a bad influence. He's too old school and doesn't have perspective about what the market want.

Wargamers moved on from a handful of nerds in the basement of a parent, concerned only with the narrative. People want a game. They want a decent and respectful rule set that they can enjoy without needing to tweaking everything.

The_Real_Chris
17-08-2015, 16:00
Can we nominate WFRP authors who built up the game background?


Epic 40K might have won awards but it flopped despite substantial support from GW. This means people didn't like it. Are they all wrong?

Perhaps :) A modified version of the same system was a success for BFG. More seriously other factors than game design could have been a factor.

The next try for Epic was explicitly designed for competitive, tournament, play. And that was entirely JJ (with players assisting).

SuperHappyTime
17-08-2015, 17:23
I don't get the "JJ hates competitive gamer" mantra. :wtf:

I assume we are all referring to the same article where JJ notes that fantasy is increasing being played competitively, and that the game was never really designed for this, and doing so may cause problems with the game?
If I designed a chair and then noted that some people were standing on the chair to reach high shelves and that this might not be a good idea as the chair had not been designed for this purpose, would the internet therefore concluded that I have only contempt for people who keep things on high shelves?

. . . Well, actually yeah it probably would, so there goes that argument. ;)

Most of those competitive gamers have shallow skin, read a 6 year old article, and thinks it points positive to why GW hates everyone.

JJ's position is more that players should build lists that look like armies, with blocks of spearmen, and not spam STanks, which a competitive environment would create.

Captain Idaho
17-08-2015, 17:32
JJ's position is that players should take whatever they want, because he can't fathom that players wouldn't deliberately handicap themselves without being asked.

He's a nice guy but totally doesn't have his finger on the pulse of the gaming community.

Funny to see labelling too. I'm actually not a competitive player. Never played a tournament of Fantasy in my life. I have a lot of fun with my mates and we let things slide for fun. I'll even let someone go back and redo something because they forgot, even after the point has long passed.

But I appreciate a rule set I can work with little effort before hand.

Kingrick
17-08-2015, 19:43
I don't get the "JJ hates competitive gamer" mantra. :wtf:

I assume we are all referring to the same article where JJ notes that fantasy is increasing being played competitively, and that the game was never really designed for this, and doing so may cause problems with the game?
If I designed a chair and then noted that some people were standing on the chair to reach high shelves and that this might not be a good idea as the chair had not been designed for this purpose, would the internet therefore concluded that I have only contempt for people who keep things on high shelves?

. . . Well, actually yeah it probably would, so there goes that argument. ;)

well, if we want to compare warhammer to chairs.... I would say if someone stands on a chair, they are probably doing it wrong. If i was a sales person, I would then try to sell them a ladder. GW decided, hey you people playing competitively your doing it wrong, but we won't try to sell you a ladder, we will instead make a game with no way of playing competitively and tell you to sit in your chair and like it. (well, my point is they had a market for both, so why not sell to both?)

Athelassan
17-08-2015, 20:39
Can we nominate WFRP authors who built up the game background?


I mentioned Graeme Davis a few posts back, and Bryan Ansell probably also deserves credit in that respect. Carl Sargent, Phil Gallagher and Jim Bambra were probably the other leading lights of WFRP1 background; Anthony Ragan also deserves a mention, as do James Wallis and John Foody for keeping WFRP alive through the dark years. The BI/BL folk are a little less household-namey but Marijan von Staufer, Andy Law (those maps!), Chris Pramas and a few others produced some good material. Oddly enough though Eric Cagle and David Chart, involved in two of the best WFRP books (Tome of Salvation and Shades of Empire) I hadn't heard of until I looked up the names just now, so there we go I guess.

How many of them count as games designers though, I'm not sure. There was certainly game design in what they were doing (well, not all of them), but RP rather than mass battle.

blindingdark
17-08-2015, 21:10
Head of GW strategy? AHA HAAAA HAA! Where do you get all this rubbish from?


Just wanted to chime in here and say that Wiki does indeed list him as "one of Games Workshop's long-term strategy managers". His Linkedin however does not. It just says games designer.

AmaroK
17-08-2015, 23:36
I agree he is a bad influence. He's too old school and doesn't have perspective about what the market want.

Wargamers moved on from a handful of nerds in the basement of a parent, concerned only with the narrative. People want a game. They want a decent and respectful rule set that they can enjoy without needing to tweaking everything.

Because what the market wants is what is good... Justin Bieber says hello and thanks to you.

Oh well, he is a bad influence because you say so. He created so many (succesful) games, and has been a senior games developer for years... and you? what have you done besides coming to a forum claiming you know what people want? Whatīs your success in gaming developing? your curriculum? having a high post count in a forum? And other people in this forum, calling people that have made so much for the hobby "cancer"... You can like or dislike what people do, but such way of talking says a lot... and nothing good if you ask me.

Spiney Norman
17-08-2015, 23:42
JJ's position is that players should take whatever they want, because he can't fathom that players wouldn't deliberately handicap themselves without being asked.


I think you're right, my former post came across a little strongly, I think Jervis is just (a long way) behind the times, and as a result the design philosophy of AoS is similarly antiquated.


I don't get the "JJ hates competitive gamer" mantra. :wtf:

I assume we are all referring to the same article where JJ notes that fantasy is increasing being played competitively, and that the game was never really designed for this, and doing so may cause problems with the game?
If I designed a chair and then noted that some people were standing on the chair to reach high shelves and that this might not be a good idea as the chair had not been designed for this purpose, would the internet therefore concluded that I have only contempt for people who keep things on high shelves?

. . . Well, actually yeah it probably would, so there goes that argument. ;)

No we're referring to the design philosophy behind AoS which completely falls apart as soon you approach the game in a competitive way (by which I mean with the attitude of 'I'd quite like to win this game', not necessarily 'I might grind my opponent to dust'). The game is so easy to break it's laughable, in fact it's quite easy to break AoS unintentionally as in you can break the game even when you're not necessarily trying to be competitive.

The article you're referring to does include some profoundly negative comments by Jervis aimed at a competitive attitude towards gaming, he describes the competitive attitude as 'not one I like at all', he also says the prevalence of competitive play will 'do much to destroy what the hobby is all about', after this tirade against competitive gaming he says something like "not that I have anything against it per se..." And then proceeds to explain why he thinks his limp, scenario based RPG style play is inherently superior (which I wholeheartedly disagree with btw). And here of course is the great tragedy, 8th edition could be used equally well to express narrative or to play competitive, tactical games, AoS comprehensively fails at the latter, and as a result it has failed me.

Honestly, if I wanted to make up stories, I would write books, I wouldn't paint hundreds of little plastic soldiers and move them around a board to express my narrative. War games should be about two people testing their tactical skills against each other, they should minimise the interference of all external influences on the outcome of the game except for player decision and tactical skill. I want to win or lose a game on my own merits, not because my opponent showed up with an unbeatable force that I couldn't hope to fight off, where is the fun or challenge in that?

I've scanned through the scenarios in the AoS hardback book and there is not one among them that cannot be fundamentally broken at the army selection stage, all you do is keep your objectives in mind and its relatively easy to build an unbeatable force for any scenario, how exactly is that fun? Where is the challenge in playing a broken game?

AmaroK
17-08-2015, 23:56
I think you're right, my former post came across a little strongly, I think Jervis is just (a long way) behind the times, and as a result the design philosophy of AoS is similarly antiquated.



No we're referring to the design philosophy behind AoS which completely falls apart as soon you approach the game in a competitive way (by which I mean with the attitude of 'I'd quite like to win this game', not necessarily 'I might grind my opponent to dust'). The game is so easy to break it's laughable, in fact it's quite easy to break AoS unintentionally as in you can break the game even when you're not necessarily trying to be competitive.

The article you're referring to does include some profoundly negative comments by Jervis aimed at a competitive attitude towards gaming, he describes the competitive attitude as 'not one I like at all', he also says the prevalence of competitive play will 'do much to destroy what the hobby is all about', after this tirade against competitive gaming he says something like "not that I have anything against it per se..." And then proceeds to explain why he thinks his limp, scenario based RPG style play is inherently superior (which I wholeheartedly disagree with btw). And here of course is the great tragedy, 8th edition could be used equally well to express narrative or to play competitive, tactical games, AoS comprehensively fails at the latter, and as a result it has failed me.

Honestly, if I wanted to make up stories, I would write books, I wouldn't paint hundreds of little plastic soldiers and move them around a board to express my narrative. War games should be about two people testing their tactical skills against each other, they should minimise the interference of all external influences on the outcome of the game except for player decision and tactical skill. I want to win or lose a game on my own merits, not because my opponent showed up with an unbeatable force that I couldn't hope to fight off, where is the fun or challenge in that?

I've scanned through the scenarios in the AoS hardback book and there is not one among them that cannot be fundamentally broken at the army selection stage, all you do is keep your objectives in mind and its relatively easy to build an unbeatable force for any scenario, how exactly is that fun? Where is the challenge in playing a broken game?

- First of all, you are talking about an article that is 13 years old, and not directly related to Age of Sigmar. Some ideas can be extracted, but thats it. Other than that, it is taking it out of context.

- Secondly, you also take quotes out of its context. Lets see what else Jervis said in that article:

"What worries me particularly is that unless we do something about the attitude that tournament style games are the best way to play games, then we could end up with a situation where this "lowest common denominator" style of play becomes so dominant that any other ways of playing games just about cease to exist, which would be a terribly sad state of affairs"

Reading you, captain Idaho and others, I have to say Jervis hit the spot. You think that the proper way to play games is the competitive way, and the mere existence of a game that is not so competitive-oriented like Age of Sigmar is so bad, so terrible, that it should cease it existance inmediatly, a game that should not be. There are many games around, 8th is still around if you prefer it. Hell, even Age of Sigmar just started its way, give it some time to see what it becomes.

- To conclude, Jervis summed it up in a phrase what he wanted to say in that article:

"If there is one underlying point to this article, it is that experienced players should not feel constrained in any way by the army lists that we print. They are guidelines and useful tools, certainly, but no more than that, and if you want to get most of your games, you should learn when to use them, and when not. Or to put it another way, "points values - who needs īem""

I canīt see where is the "hate" on his words. He just wanted to point out that you can play with no points values at all, altering the rules and not constraining your ways. Thatīs all. Whatīs so terrible about that? Pointing out that Warhammer was born closer to roleplaying games (non-competitive, colaborative) than to competitive games? What can he know of his own game... :P

Spiney Norman
18-08-2015, 00:16
[/I]Reading you, captain Idaho and others, I have to say Jervis hit the spot. You think that the proper way to play games is the competitive way, and the mere existence of a game that is not so competitive-oriented like Age of Sigmar is so bad, so terrible, that it should cease it existance inmediatly, a game that should not be. There are many games around, 8th is still around if you prefer it. Hell, even Age of Sigmar just started its way, give it some time to see what it becomes.

No, I think it's bad that AoS cannot be played in a competitive manner when previous warhammer games worked equally well as competitive or narrative games. The very fact that JJ considers competitive play to be the "lowest common denominator" shows that he considers his way of playing to be superior. At the very least I'd say that both ways of playing have equal validity and both should be just as workable in a game, as they were in 8th edition and every edition of warhammer before it.

I don't deny I prefer to play with a competitive attitude, I like my performance as the player (and the performance of my opponent) to determine the result of the game. If my opponent pulls an absolute blinder of a manouevre and crushes me that's a great outcome, I've learned something I can use next time. If I get crushed because my opponent brought an army of monstrous infantry and I turned up with mostly Empire State troops and gave away a sudden death condition I didn't learn anything other than I should be playing ogres instead of empire.


"If there is one underlying point to this article, it is that experienced players should not feel constrained in any way by the army lists that we print. They are guidelines and useful tools, certainly, but no more than that, and if you want to get most of your games, you should learn when to use them, and when not. Or to put it another way, "points values - who needs īem""


so how do we apply this article to AoS, you can't play AoS with points because it doesn't have them, you have to. Actually this shows why AoS was a terrible idea, if a game comes with points then you can be free to ignore them, if it doesn't come with points there is nothing you can do about it unless you are prepared to put in hours and hours of playtesting time to make up your own. I'm lucky if I get to play one game (of any system) one evening a week, I certainly don't have time to playtest a whole points system for a game which should have one in the first place.

We've moved from a fun flexible system (Warhammer 6th-8th edition) to a thoroughly inflexible system which in fundamentally incompatible with my style of play, and to be honest I'm a little bemused why a game being unbalanced is so important for narrative play.

Dosiere
18-08-2015, 01:40
The problem with jervis and AoS is that they don't understand there is a difference between the WAAC tournament player (a very small number of people) and the pick up gamers. This is a topic not brought up by Jervis or most other developers. Pick up gamers aren't trying to spend all night playing an RPG with their damn miniatures, nor do they want every game to be this hyper competitive tournament style game every time. They're somewhere in the middle, but they do lean towards a more structured approach because it's much, much easier to play pick up games without all BS that AoS requires. Unlike what apparently the Internet and lovers of AoS want everyone to believe, the vast majority of my WFB games were fun affairs with nearly complete strangers that took almost zero effort to set up and agree to play.

One secret to success I found was to bring 2 or 3 different lists and use the one that seemed the most appropriate after seeing what the other player is bringing. I would pull out the 2 steam tank list if I saw he had skaven with 2 ABombs for example, but that same list would be retarded to play against a clearly less competitive one from someone else. Play the player so to speak.

It's clear someone at GW (Jervis we assume, although I don't know what he did for AoS) took the ideas that JJ has been talking about to the extreme by invalidating the way a lot of gamers play their games, because ..... Well I don't really know. Do we even know who developed AoS?

akai
18-08-2015, 02:03
Mutant League Football is a video game released in 1993. Blood Bowl the board game was first released in 1987.

On topic, not neccessary best game designer, but Rick Priestley's writings for me was what got me into the Warhammer hobby.

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 07:30
Because what the market wants is what is good... Justin Bieber says hello and thanks to you.

Oh well, he is a bad influence because you say so. He created so many (succesful) games, and has been a senior games developer for years... and you? what have you done besides coming to a forum claiming you know what people want? Whatīs your success in gaming developing? your curriculum? having a high post count in a forum? And other people in this forum, calling people that have made so much for the hobby "cancer"... You can like or dislike what people do, but such way of talking says a lot... and nothing good if you ask me.

I'm part of the market and I don't like what they produce therefore I take my business elsewhere. This is repeated up and down the UK with declining sales and a shrinking dominance of the market GW once enjoyed.

You are aware GW is a public trading company and what the market want is incredibly crucial?

And JJ's list of successful games? Not as high as you'd think. He didn't create Fantasy but has presided over its steady demise since Andy Chambers left (coincidence sales began to slide then?).

The games he did create are great little skirmish games for the most part. Simple yet effective. Soon as he gets his hands on something mainstream though... Epic 40k sales and flop.

Ultimately you can dispute what I'm saying and ignore the catalogue of games and Codex books he created that flopped, the style of game he produces and his own comments in articles and designer notes, but declining sales and all his peers leaving for greener pastures whilst he's left in charge DOES speak volumes.

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 09:27
The problem with jervis and AoS is that they don't understand there is a difference between the WAAC tournament player (a very small number of people) and the pick up gamers. This is a topic not brought up by Jervis or most other developers. Pick up gamers aren't trying to spend all night playing an RPG with their damn miniatures, nor do they want every game to be this hyper competitive tournament style game every time. They're somewhere in the middle, but they do lean towards a more structured approach because it's much, much easier to play pick up games without all BS that AoS requires. Unlike what apparently the Internet and lovers of AoS want everyone to believe, the vast majority of my WFB games were fun affairs with nearly complete strangers that took almost zero effort to set up and agree to play.

One secret to success I found was to bring 2 or 3 different lists and use the one that seemed the most appropriate after seeing what the other player is bringing. I would pull out the 2 steam tank list if I saw he had skaven with 2 ABombs for example, but that same list would be retarded to play against a clearly less competitive one from someone else. Play the player so to speak.

It's clear someone at GW (Jervis we assume, although I don't know what he did for AoS) took the ideas that JJ has been talking about to the extreme by invalidating the way a lot of gamers play their games, because ..... Well I don't really know. Do we even know who developed AoS?

I agree with your approach. I enjoy a good game which seesaws between players who's going to win. It's more exciting. I build my lists against the players to ensure we both have a good time.

Your question is a good one - we don't know who pushed the design studio in this direction. However, a writer worth his salt would resign from any job pushing them to do something that compromises their integrity. Andy Chambers did just that and I bet the other studio favourites did also (though they haven't all came out and slagged the company like Andy did).

JJ is a nice guy from when I've met him, but as a senior member of the company he has to shoulder some blame here.

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 09:33
Mutant League Football is a video game released in 1993. Blood Bowl the board game was first released in 1987.

On topic, not neccessary best game designer, but Rick Priestley's writings for me was what got me into the Warhammer hobby.
Actually I wasn't very clear. There is a game published in a magazine (forget the name) called Monsters of the Midway that was published in 1982.

Sorry this was my confusing the point because I am at work and skiving!

I shouldn't have brought up Mutant Football League in addition to it, though they are connected.

Athelassan
18-08-2015, 09:48
And JJ's list of successful games? Not as high as you'd think. He didn't create Fantasy but has presided over its steady demise since Andy Chambers left (coincidence sales began to slide then?).

The games he did create are great little skirmish games for the most part. Simple yet effective. Soon as he gets his hands on something mainstream though... Epic 40k sales and flop.

Ultimately you can dispute what I'm saying and ignore the catalogue of games and Codex books he created that flopped, the style of game he produces and his own comments in articles and designer notes, but declining sales and all his peers leaving for greener pastures whilst he's left in charge DOES speak volumes.
Again, it seems like you're being really selective here. Jervis was involved in Epic 40K, but so was Andy Chambers. Moreover, Jervis was also credited on the two earlier editions of Space Marine and Adeptus Titanicus. So it's not like he got his hands on Epic and suddenly it was a disaster: it was a misjudgment maybe, but from someone who'd been involved since the start. Andy Chambers hadn't been involved in fantasy, at least not in a credited role, since about 4th edition(!) while Jervis was credited on the 6th ed release, widely regarded as one of the best they produced. He was also a designer on Black Powder outside GW, which is very well regarded.

The_Real_Chris
18-08-2015, 09:58
He actually designs a lot of stuff outside of GW, just not always under his name.

Also ask him how he feels he did with Advanced Space Crusade :)

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 10:03
I'm not being selective at all. If you read my posts you'll see that I frequently credit JJ with good games, particularly Skirmish games, that thrive on a simplified approach. I don't expect everything to be a success for every designer but instead catalogued examples of JJ work that highlights his simplified and abstract style and how this is not what the market wants and points to his hand at AoS.

And 6th edition was released back when Alessio and Pirinen were about, so had more to do with them.

zoggin-eck
18-08-2015, 14:38
Also ask him how he feels he did with Advanced Space Crusade :)

Out of interest, how does he feel? (Or is it somewhere online and I'm being daft not already knowing?)

Malagor
18-08-2015, 15:13
He was also a designer on Black Powder outside GW, which is very well regarded.
To be fair, I think Rick Priestly is the main brain behind that ruleset, not JJ.
Afterall they are a evolved ruleset from Warmaster, another Priestly game.

Athelassan
18-08-2015, 15:23
I'm not being selective at all. If you read my posts you'll see that I frequently credit JJ with good games, particularly Skirmish games, that thrive on a simplified approach. I don't expect everything to be a success for every designer but instead catalogued examples of JJ work that highlights his simplified and abstract style and how this is not what the market wants and points to his hand at AoS.

And 6th edition was released back when Alessio and Pirinen were about, so had more to do with them.

This kind of illustrates the point, though: you're giving other people credit for the good decisions (WFB6) and Jervis the blame for the bad ones (Epic 40K). You use Epic 40K as an example of what happens when he gets his hands on a system while ignoring his input into the other four entires of the Epic series.

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 16:22
Well no not really. The designer notes in Epic Armageddon show us that JJ was the major force behind the abstract simplified rules (he says it worked for BFG) whilst Fantasy he played a bit part as he headed up the Specialist Games.

Previous editions of the epic and Fantasy were unknown exactly what influence he held so we can't determine either way.

But in his Q&A he excuses the Chaos Space Marines Codex for its poor fall from grace back in 3.5-4th days, and he authored the Codex DA to show the studio how it's done yet it flopped hard.

Athelassan
18-08-2015, 19:41
Previous editions of the epic and Fantasy were unknown exactly what influence he held so we can't determine either way.

Well he was the only credited designer on Adeptus Titanicus, so it's probably fair to surmise he had some significant influence over that; he's the only designer to have worked on every edition.

popisdead
18-08-2015, 19:51
Because of what he did for Wood Elves in 6th Matt Ward. For what he did in 8th, take him off the list.

Generally I am against boring rules with no flair.

Captain Idaho
18-08-2015, 21:48
Well he was the only credited designer on Adeptus Titanicus, so it's probably fair to surmise he had some significant influence over that; he's the only designer to have worked on every edition.

Hey, I enjoyed Epic Armageddon. I enjoyed a fair few of his work.
Doesn't change the fact his trends and style is all over AoS and it's not for the best.

SuperHappyTime
19-08-2015, 13:49
Because of what he did for Wood Elves in 6th Matt Ward. For what he did in 8th, take him off the list.

Generally I am against boring rules with no flair.

Think we may need to give Mr. Ward some slack here. I think the group as a whole decided to turn WE into High/Dark Elves for the End Times and AoS.

Bingo the Fun Monkey
19-08-2015, 14:05
Mat Ward's work in 6th and 8th was solid. It was really the 7th ed daemon book as well his smurf fanboyism that really earned him the ire of the internet. I loved what he did with the elf books in 8th...and if i recall he had left gw before the end times. Oh i also personally hated him for the 7th OnG book.

Sent from my LGLS770 using Tapatalk

Spiney Norman
19-08-2015, 14:20
Mat Ward's work in 6th and 8th was solid. It was really the 7th ed daemon book as well his smurf fanboyism that really earned him the ire of the internet. I loved what he did with the elf books in 8th...and if i recall he had left gw before the end times. Oh i also personally hated him for the 7th OnG book.

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What was wrong with the 7th ed O&G book? I absolutely loved that list, I'd hardly say it was OP

Bingo the Fun Monkey
19-08-2015, 14:28
What was wrong with the 7th ed O&G book? I absolutely loved that list, I'd hardly say it was OP
Greenskins have never been OP. It was mostly the animosity table which, unlike every other animosity table ever, had a 1/3 chance for the unit to do something you didn't want it to. Basically, there was an edition where greenskins were twice as unreliable as normal. Also, the price of cavalry was raised irrationally high...probably a response to 6th being dominated by cavalry, but no other book that edition arbitrarily raised the cost of cavalry by 40% for no reason. In his WD designer notes he pretty much stated that he hated greenskins because doom divers would kill his vampire regularly. Happily, Vetok would fix situation in 8th. Best OnG book was Thornton's in 6th.

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Just Tony
19-08-2015, 16:11
Greenskins have never been OP. It was mostly the animosity table which, unlike every other animosity table ever, had a 1/3 chance for the unit to do something you didn't want it to. Basically, there was an edition where greenskins were twice as unreliable as normal. Also, the price of cavalry was raised irrationally high...probably a response to 6th being dominated by cavalry, but no other book that edition arbitrarily raised the cost of cavalry by 40% for no reason. In his WD designer notes he pretty much stated that he hated greenskins because doom divers would kill his vampire regularly. Happily, Vetok would fix situation in 8th. Best OnG book was Thornton's in 6th.

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For reasons like this, designers should not be allowed to work on their own army, or any army that they profess to dislike. If you can't be objective, you need another job. Pete Haines is a great example of that. I shudder to think of what he'd do to the Imperial Fists and their successors if he were given the reins.

Inquisitor Kallus
20-08-2015, 05:26
Believe what you will. I could go on about my experience with wholesale Codex rejection from another popular forum or real life, or how adding evidence together equals conclusion, or how JJ IS a strategy manager, but I doubt you'd listen.

GW wont care about your apologist attitude and give you a job though.

They did give me a job though, three times in fact. I left of my own free will to do other things



I don't think he wants you to go on and on....I think he just wants you to actually back up what you are saying which thus far you have failed to do.

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Indeed


Yeah I'm not going to go searching through archived posts going back years or write to GW to get confirmation of the staff hierarchy because someone on the Internet doesn't believe me.

Whatever. Put your fingers in your ears and defend someone who has destroyed Warhammer (or at least contributed to it) and has a history of releases to his name that have flopped.

Believe it or not. What do I care? I'm at work and have limited free time, so whilst I'll engage in discussion, I'm not going to bust a gut justifying everything I post.

http://bewareofthephil.tumblr.com/post/124141948385/interesting-old-article-from-the-citadel-journal

Here you go, two pages, go nuts. Ill be waiting for your quote. Otherwise its all just hot air....

The_Real_Chris
20-08-2015, 10:50
Out of interest, how does he feel? (Or is it somewhere online and I'm being daft not already knowing?)

No not at all, I doubt he has written about it outside of playtest forums. In short his first game, too many good ideas, bit embarrissing looking back at it (I remember spending 3 days to play a full game through!).

Captain Idaho
20-08-2015, 11:27
They did give me a job though, three times in fact. I left of my own free will to do other things




Indeed



http://bewareofthephil.tumblr.com/post/124141948385/interesting-old-article-from-the-citadel-journal

Here you go, two pages, go nuts. Ill be waiting for your quote. Otherwise its all just hot air....

Sorry you're way too late. Already replied to disputes like this quite effectively so won't be repeating myself.

The bearded one
20-08-2015, 13:05
218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

This little bit right here is amazing. Well worth the read.

Just Tony
20-08-2015, 13:57
They did give me a job though, three times in fact. I left of my own free will to do other things




Indeed



http://bewareofthephil.tumblr.com/post/124141948385/interesting-old-article-from-the-citadel-journal

Here you go, two pages, go nuts. Ill be waiting for your quote. Otherwise its all just hot air....

Since he can't be bothered to respond, I'll give it a go.

What I break this down to is that Jervis looks at the game as a sort of a D&D Lite, as in he views the roleplaying aspect of the hobby far more importantly than any sort of even match up. He's more worried about whether or not people "Forge the Narrative" than anything else. In the more balanced and point driven editions, nothing stopped someone from forging the narrative. NOTHING. Tourney play, while emphasized and sometimes pushed a little too much on casual game night, is not nearly the conquering specter that JJ seems to think it is. Had that been true, nobody would have played Apocalypse. Nobody would have played the Dark Shadows campaign, which had TONS of games results posted to their website which were scenario based. I'd love to take a poll of every human that played 6th Edition and ask how many people didn't play through every scenario in the book. Given my own gaming clubs' appreciation of such things, I'm willing to be the number would be low.

In short, I think JJ here needs to realize there is no "right" way to game. Not his RPG heavy version, not the fluffy non-competitive version, not the rigid tourney style version. I'm sure someone can put it better than me...


218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

... and here we go. Someone should have simply mailed this in as a direct response to Jervis Johnson's article.




Now as far as JJ's talent as a designer: isn't he the one that did the Imperial Guard book for 3rd Ed.? You know, the one with drastically overpriced elite units that were understatted? His design philosophy was that elite units should always cost much more than core units, no matter the stat disparity. Can't say that's good game design.

Inquisitor Kallus
20-08-2015, 15:32
Sorry you're way too late. Already replied to disputes like this quite effectively so won't be repeating myself.

Yes, how very convenient....

Cant be bothered to look over it?


Since he can't be bothered to respond, I'll give it a go.

What I break this down to is that Jervis looks at the game as a sort of a D&D Lite, as in he views the roleplaying aspect of the hobby far more importantly than any sort of even match up. He's more worried about whether or not people "Forge the Narrative" than anything else. In the more balanced and point driven editions, nothing stopped someone from forging the narrative. NOTHING. Tourney play, while emphasized and sometimes pushed a little too much on casual game night, is not nearly the conquering specter that JJ seems to think it is. Had that been true, nobody would have played Apocalypse. Nobody would have played the Dark Shadows campaign, which had TONS of games results posted to their website which were scenario based. I'd love to take a poll of every human that played 6th Edition and ask how many people didn't play through every scenario in the book. Given my own gaming clubs' appreciation of such things, I'm willing to be the number would be low.

In short, I think JJ here needs to realize there is no "right" way to game. Not his RPG heavy version, not the fluffy non-competitive version, not the rigid tourney style version. I'm sure someone can put it better than me...



... and here we go. Someone should have simply mailed this in as a direct response to Jervis Johnson's article.




Now as far as JJ's talent as a designer: isn't he the one that did the Imperial Guard book for 3rd Ed.? You know, the one with drastically overpriced elite units that were understatted? His design philosophy was that elite units should always cost much more than core units, no matter the stat disparity. Can't say that's good game design.



Again, he doesnt say there is a 'right way to play. He is not saying other ways are wrong, he is pointing out that the tournament style scene is becoming the norm and effectively displacing more open/narrative ways of playing. Its true. In fact there is that thing that, because so many people play pick up style games and so on that they are less comfortable trying other things.Ive seen it countless times, and it comes down to rules becoming sacrosanct (RAW vs RAI etc), people not wanting to change stuff because they feel it might give them an advantage/they may be seen as cheating etc. Jervis enjoys, and is at home playing this way, it is important to him, and indeed others who like playing games this way, he does not say other ways are less important or that his way is the right/best/whatever way. The amount of people on here that are so blinkered that unless someone doesnt agree with their way and support what they do 100% they feel that the other person is against them and whatever they do/stand for.

"GW havent released new SOB, theyre sexists/bigots!" (or something very similar)
"This isnt a battle report! I would never take those units!"
"No that paint/tool/game/article whatever is rubbish, GW released it. Have I tried/read it? No.


With Apocalypse and Dark Shadows the rules were there. The majority of people didnt try doing it themselves, they follow the rules layed down so much that fewer and fewer people are being creative (gaming wise) and tournaments have become the more important thing, or beating your opponent etc. People are just slavishly following the rules.


My mate who plays Chaos basically was uneasy with the idea of changing some of his rules (giving legion/chapter styles rules) a bit and lowering some points values. He said it wouldnt feel right and there was the general feeling that if he won a game using the slightly better rules it would make it less of a win for him. We play fluffily, so even with Chaos, he doesnt take any ott powerful units (no drakes, allies etc)

Spiney Norman
20-08-2015, 17:38
Again, he doesnt say there is a 'right way to play. He is not saying other ways are wrong, he is pointing out that the tournament style scene is becoming the norm and effectively displacing more open/narrative ways of playing. Its true. In fact there is that thing that, because so many people play pick up style games and so on that they are less comfortable trying other things.Ive seen it countless times, and it comes down to rules becoming sacrosanct (RAW vs RAI etc), people not wanting to change stuff because they feel it might give them an advantage/they may be seen as cheating etc. Jervis enjoys, and is at home playing this way, it is important to him, and indeed others who like playing games this way, he does not say other ways are less important or that his way is the right/best/whatever way. The amount of people on here that are so blinkered that unless someone doesnt agree with their way and support what they do 100% they feel that the other person is against them and whatever they do/stand for.

The whole tone of the article does read as though he thinks his 'narrative' way of playing is superior to the fair and balanced 'tournement style' games he is talking about, when you stack that with Age of Sigmar, a game which is intentionally designed to make tournement style games/pick up games impossible due to a complete absence of any kind of balance between opposing armies and you can easily see why people have been linking the two.

Personally I think the whole article stinks to high heaven, he's conflating war gaming and RPGs in a way that simply does not work in a competitive two player game (competitive in the sense of two players with no GM and mutually exclusive victory conditions). The tone reminds me of some retired trade unionist demanding that all the coal mines be reopened, as though 30 yrs of progress and development in the war gaming market should just be reversed overnight.

I'm happy playing narrative games as long as I'm persuaded the game is still a fair contest, there are fewer more worthless uses of my time that entering a contest when the odds are stacked against me from the start, often insurmountably so.

A lot of posters defending AoS like to point out that there are 'other ways' to balance a game besides points, I'm open to that possibility but I've yet to see anyone actually explain how this might work. I've also yet to see anyone explain why AoS does not have any such system to actually make fair and balanced games an opportunity.

Denny
21-08-2015, 07:35
I'm happy playing narrative games as long as I'm persuaded the game is still a fair contest, there are fewer more worthless uses of my time that entering a contest when the odds are stacked against me from the start, often insurmountably so.

Funnily enough I'm the opposite; I can't think of anything much more pointless than a random pickup game. Whether I win or lose my army is automatically regenerated for the next game. There are no consequences, no narrative, no 'purpose' to the game. I could play a thousand such games and the thousandth game would be just the same as the first one. Nothing is ever achieved. Nothing changes. Victory means nothing.

Plus, winning against the odds is far sweeter.

Different strokes different folks. :)

Captain Idaho
21-08-2015, 09:36
Funnily enough I'm the opposite; I can't think of anything much more pointless than a random pickup game. Whether I win or lose my army is automatically regenerated for the next game. There are no consequences, no narrative, no 'purpose' to the game. I could play a thousand such games and the thousandth game would be just the same as the first one. Nothing is ever achieved. Nothing changes. Victory means nothing.

Plus, winning against the odds is far sweeter.

Different strokes different folks. :)

That's just the point though. Everyone should play their own game and be able to enjoy the game.

Eyrenthaal
21-08-2015, 10:53
Pirinen wrote mordheim, alessio helped him. The only skirmish game they would ever have needed. So they scrapped it.

Mudkip
21-08-2015, 11:37
Funnily enough I'm the opposite; I can't think of anything much more pointless than a random pickup game. Whether I win or lose my army is automatically regenerated for the next game. There are no consequences, no narrative, no 'purpose' to the game. I could play a thousand such games and the thousandth game would be just the same as the first one. Nothing is ever achieved. Nothing changes. Victory means nothing.

Plus, winning against the odds is far sweeter.

Different strokes different folks. :)

I imagine you would be disappointed then if a designer radically altered a game you were used to playing, going as far as possible to remove narrative games in favour of a purely competitive ruleset while pushing propaganda about how the community is better off without you and the game was always rubbish anyway.

Spiney Norman
21-08-2015, 12:04
I imagine you would be disappointed then if a designer radically altered a game you were used to playing, going as far as possible to remove narrative games in favour of a purely competitive ruleset while pushing propaganda about how the community is better off without you and the game was always rubbish anyway.

I don't really see how you could do it that way round, if you really want to play a war game without point costs you can just take one with point costs and ignore the points. That's certainly a lot easier than making up your own from scratch when the shoe is on the other foot.

ScruffMan
21-08-2015, 16:50
The whole tone of the article does read as though he thinks his 'narrative' way of playing is superior to the fair and balanced 'tournement style' games he is talking about, when you stack that with Age of Sigmar, a game which is intentionally designed to make tournement style games/pick up games impossible due to a complete absence of any kind of balance between opposing armies and you can easily see why people have been linking the two.

Personally I think the whole article stinks to high heaven, he's conflating war gaming and RPGs in a way that simply does not work in a competitive two player game (competitive in the sense of two players with no GM and mutually exclusive victory conditions). The tone reminds me of some retired trade unionist demanding that all the coal mines be reopened, as though 30 yrs of progress and development in the war gaming market should just be reversed overnight.

I'm happy playing narrative games as long as I'm persuaded the game is still a fair contest, there are fewer more worthless uses of my time that entering a contest when the odds are stacked against me from the start, often insurmountably so.

A lot of posters defending AoS like to point out that there are 'other ways' to balance a game besides points, I'm open to that possibility but I've yet to see anyone actually explain how this might work. I've also yet to see anyone explain why AoS does not have any such system to actually make fair and balanced games an opportunity.


Unfortunately, there probably is not an explanation that would satisfy you (unless a balancing system is coming which is seeming more and more unlikely, at least in the short term). The explanation is almost certainly that GW is trying to discourage tournament/set list pick up style play. Have they noted that having the options for games in a "competitive" style put people off trying to play in other ways? Maybe, and I suspect there is some truth to that. At the end of the day it is their baby and they have decided that do not want to make it "competitive". At all. I think there are more customers who will be pleased about such a change than many on this forum think though. Rightly or wrongly, there is no rightly or wrongly here.

Captain Idaho
21-08-2015, 21:44
There is a right or wrong when you consider the amount of narrative only players (a definitive term I'm not happy with) don't bring enough money into the industry. Before you dispute this, consider all the players moving away from GW and their steadily declining sales. Consider the toxic reaction from the whole AoS release.

On a personal level, sure we DESERVE to do what we want and I support. From a business sense cutting your core market out and replacing it with a much smaller demographic who don't necessarily exist (those pesky white middle class geeks) and narrative exclusive types is at best a massive risk.

Unless GW are fed up being massive and want to go back to the size they were in the 80s?

Skargit Crookfang
22-08-2015, 07:17
Because what the market wants is what is good... Justin Bieber says hello and thanks to you.



Why are you hating on the Bieb?

I spent years in a touring rock band, and I actually do have a bit of respect for the little scamp. He's got a killer voice, knows how to play some actual instruments and is a pop star who can actually write at least some of his own tunes.

That said, I can't stand listening to him... because his music is not for me. It's marketed to a very specific demographic, that happens to be massive in size and economic influence. Within that particular group, his music is a cut above, for many reasons, and his overwhelming success has shown that.

At the end of the day, there will be some wargamers who enjoy AoS, possibly for narrative reasons... but unlike Bieber's targeted demographic, the marker-light on this release is still a bit of a head scratcher. As for JJ, well, I don't see how this project could have gone forward without him having a serious hand in its creation and development.

Also, if AoS was put out to kill off the WAACers...mission bloody well failed. I've witnessed too many "I'll put down 10 Chaos Knights" - "Well I'LL put down 30 Iron Guts" embarrassments, already, to see this game as steering away from power gaming... unless this is just painfully obvious unintended consequences.

Spiney Norman
22-08-2015, 08:38
Funnily enough I'm the opposite; I can't think of anything much more pointless than a random pickup game. Whether I win or lose my army is automatically regenerated for the next game. There are no consequences, no narrative, no 'purpose' to the game. I could play a thousand such games and the thousandth game would be just the same as the first one. Nothing is ever achieved. Nothing changes. Victory means nothing.

Plus, winning against the odds is far sweeter.

Different strokes different folks. :)

Let me get this straight, you actually prefer to be at either an overpowering advantage or hopeless disadvantage in every game you play, ever?

I can understand the draw of asymmetric games occasionally as long as the advantage gained is not too extreme, but most of the time I prefer the uncertainty of a contest which both players have an approximately even chance of winning

Lexington
23-08-2015, 04:44
I really don't understand how anyone thinks Jervis Johnson has any real input on the overall design strategy of AoS. He probably has about as much influence on matters of game design as I do.

GrandmasterWang
23-08-2015, 06:24
I really don't understand how anyone thinks Jervis Johnson has any real input on the overall design strategy of AoS. He probably has about as much influence on matters of game design as I do.

Who are you? Jeremy Vetock?

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AmaroK
23-08-2015, 08:24
Why are you hating on the Bieb?

I spent years in a touring rock band, and I actually do have a bit of respect for the little scamp. He's got a killer voice, knows how to play some actual instruments and is a pop star who can actually write at least some of his own tunes.

That said, I can't stand listening to him... because his music is not for me. It's marketed to a very specific demographic, that happens to be massive in size and economic influence. Within that particular group, his music is a cut above, for many reasons, and his overwhelming success has shown that.

At the end of the day, there will be some wargamers who enjoy AoS, possibly for narrative reasons... but unlike Bieber's targeted demographic, the marker-light on this release is still a bit of a head scratcher. As for JJ, well, I don't see how this project could have gone forward without him having a serious hand in its creation and development.

Also, if AoS was put out to kill off the WAACers...mission bloody well failed. I've witnessed too many "I'll put down 10 Chaos Knights" - "Well I'LL put down 30 Iron Guts" embarrassments, already, to see this game as steering away from power gaming... unless this is just painfully obvious unintended consequences.

Its not hate about Bieber. In fact, I have the same reasons to not like his music or do not consider it "good". Itīs marketed. Itīs nothing new, nothing better than other previous music from the same style. Nor worse, you can say. But eventually, hes overall success do not have nothing to do with his musics "quality", but as you said, because its marketed in a proper way, for a certain target, and with some big economic support on his back.

On the same line, any game success do not have to be directly related on its design qualities. You can have the example of X-wing and its original, Wings of war. Basically the same game, one with the Star Wars franchise behind, the other with WWI planes. One very successful, the other almost forgotten.

Captain Idaho
23-08-2015, 09:46
I really don't understand how anyone thinks Jervis Johnson has any real input on the overall design strategy of AoS. He probably has about as much influence on matters of game design as I do.

Except he's a senior games designer?

Lexington
23-08-2015, 18:44
Except he's a senior games designer?
He's a senior games designer in a company where, last I heard, the games design studio was a lower-order component of the sales division. The basic design strategy of AoS - which is really more of a series of business decisions that have been marketed as a game - didn't come from some game designers. It came from a sales group (and probably even higher levels than that) who are desperately trying to right a slowly-sinking ship of a company. Jervis Johnson was almost certainly an uninvolved party.

Captain Idaho
23-08-2015, 19:06
I have already pointed out the similarities of his style to AoS, plus we have the words from him that support that.

I doubt very much the share holders have sat around a table and said "what can we do to increase profits? Mwah haha haha!"

Likely, the top of the company look at sliding sales, bring in the senior staff and discuss what's going wrong and what their strategy is to fix it.

I've been in on such discussion before at a bank, seen it trickle down to lower levels and even ended up with redundancy because I refused to be a yes man and pointed out how they're wrong (diplomatically believe it or not - I'm not Warseer all the time ;) ).

If JJ wasn't in that meeting then maybe the chief executive really is a mad dictator, but business doesn't work that way.

Spiney Norman
23-08-2015, 20:36
He's a senior games designer in a company where, last I heard, the games design studio was a lower-order component of the sales division. The basic design strategy of AoS - which is really more of a series of business decisions that have been marketed as a game - didn't come from some game designers. It came from a sales group (and probably even higher levels than that) who are desperately trying to right a slowly-sinking ship of a company. Jervis Johnson was almost certainly an uninvolved party.

That is pretty speculative, a game company who didn't involve their people who know about designing games in the process of writing rules for a new game is idiotic beyond words. The design studio may have had a pretty heavy brief from on high when designing AoS, but to say they were an 'uninvolved party' when it came down to writing the rules seems unlikely. I somehow doubt a group of faceless suit-wearing board members with no personal experience of war gaming decided that 'points are the enemy' without talking to someone from games development.

Niall78
23-08-2015, 20:57
That is pretty speculative, a game company who didn't involve their people who know about designing games in the process of writing rules for a new game is idiotic beyond words. The design studio may have had a pretty heavy brief from on high when designing AoS, but to say they were an 'uninvolved party' when it came down to writing the rules seems unlikely. I somehow doubt a group of faceless suit-wearing board members with no personal experience of war gaming decided that 'points are the enemy' without talking to someone from games development.
I'd be surprised myself but then again who were the designers involved? The game credits nobody for writing or designing it.

Spiney Norman
23-08-2015, 21:00
I'd be surprised myself but then again who were the designers involved? The game credits nobody for writing or designing it.

That's hardly surprising, if I'd been involved in putting together that pile of ****** I wouldn't want my name anywhere near it.

Avian
23-08-2015, 21:02
Presumably some of the bigger concepts would have been hashed out in meetings between the designers and management, and then the designers came up with the details.

Of course, since they don't do much in the way of market analysis, a fair bit of that would have been based on guesswork.

Captain Idaho
23-08-2015, 21:27
That's hardly surprising, I'd been involved in putting together that pile of ****** I wouldn't want my name anywhere near it.

Ah damn, ninja'd

Scribe of Khorne
23-08-2015, 21:37
218152


Man, if Alessio had been around, AoS would have either never happened, or been amazing for every player in the hobby and all those who wanted to come back to it.

Thats really great.

Lexington
24-08-2015, 01:05
That is pretty speculative, a game company who didn't involve their people who know about designing games in the process of writing rules for a new game is idiotic beyond words. The design studio may have had a pretty heavy brief from on high when designing AoS, but to say they were an 'uninvolved party' when it came down to writing the rules seems unlikely. I somehow doubt a group of faceless suit-wearing board members with no personal experience of war gaming decided that 'points are the enemy' without talking to someone from games development.
I find it far, far less believable that a professional game designer was involved with setting a games design agenda of 'points are the enemy,' and solved this problem by replacing them with nothing.

SuperHappyTime
24-08-2015, 04:56
I find it far, far less believable that a professional game designer was involved with setting a games design agenda of 'points are the enemy,' and solved this problem by replacing them with nothing.

Even a professional game designer that wants to keep their job?

Lexington
24-08-2015, 05:29
Even a professional game designer that wants to keep their job?
At that point, they're not really setting the agenda, are they?

vlad78
24-08-2015, 07:47
To go back on topic, Andy chambers was my favorite designer.

Spiney Norman
24-08-2015, 08:54
I find it far, far less believable that a professional game designer was involved with setting a games design agenda of 'points are the enemy,' and solved this problem by replacing them with nothing.

Have you not read the Jervis "points, who needs 'em" article we are all talking about? That was exactly what Jervis thought when he wrote it (admittedly a long time ago).

tmod
24-08-2015, 14:02
I find it far, far less believable that a professional game designer was involved with setting a games design agenda of 'points are the enemy,' and solved this problem by replacing them with nothing.

How about this:
If the board designed AoS without any input from the studio, why do they retain a costly studio in the first place? JJ is head of the studio unless I'm nistaken, and although he might be embarrased (or not), he HAS definitely been involved. How and how much is just speculation though.

Given that the game has been in development several years, and several writers have quit the last few years, it might very well be that disillusionment with AoS is one of the major reasons for this...

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Kisanis
24-08-2015, 15:48
I dislike andy chambers for the super simplification of 3rd edition, but that said he did some great things later on.

My favs? Priestly, Cavatore, Tuomos, and yes Jervis.

JJ was great when a part of the team. He was a great assistant director. A great co-writer. Probably a fantastic guy to bounce ideas off of. He truly knows his stuff.

Just never give him free reign on his own movie (so to speak).



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Mirbeau
24-08-2015, 22:45
Tuomos, Stillman, Priestly. Alessio's in too for his impact, though I often disagreed with him. I think Reynolds wrote the 6th ed Wood Elves book along with Ward (which remains my favourite armybook - both rules and background) so he'd be up there for that.

ScruffMan
24-08-2015, 22:49
Andy Chambers and Bill King, Jervis Johnson and Nigel Stillman for my fave army books, the fourth edition elves. Huge rose tinted nostalgic goggles on there possibly.