Friday, March 17, 2006

Fantasy Flight Games: The Price of Loyalty

Fantasy Flight Games' (FFG's) announcement this week of their 2006 release calendar filled my brain with excitement and at the same time my pocketbook cried with horror and dread. So many cool games scheduled for release in one year! Even with FFG's characteristic shipping delays, 2006 looks to be by far their biggest and most amazing year.

I classify myself as an American-style gamer with an appreciation of elegant European design elements, which makes most of FFG's catalog right up my alley. Running down their 2006 upcoming list, I made what is my tentative wish / leaning towards must buy list. Then I applied a cost estimate to each, optimistically assuming on-line, deep-discounting, and not counting shipping or sales tax:

Warrior Knights: $35
AGOT: Storm of Swords: $30
Starcraft: $55
Reins of Power: $55
Tide of Iron: $55
Blue Moon City: $35
Marvel Heroes: $50
Arkham Horror Expansion 1: $35
Arkham Horror Expansion 2: $20
Decent Expansions (2): $50
TI: 3 Expansion: $30
World of Warcraft Expansions (2): $50
Lord of the Rings Battlefields: $30
Misc Runebound Expansions: $40

Grand Total: $570 !!! It may be time to consider starting a part-time pizza delivery job.

FFG's marketing strategy seems to have effectively identified the completist/collector nature of many (including me) in our hobby. The big box of toys theme seems to be alive and well too. I really don't mind the fact that Mutant Chronicles is a collectible miniatures game, as I'm thankful for having a solid reason to skip it. Now I wonder which of these above are going to be the stinkers of the bunch?


At 11:29 PM, March 17, 2006, Blogger Rob said...

I'm also usually compelled to get expansions for all my games. Let me know when u get Starcraft.

At 8:51 AM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Jeff said...

I hope Marvel Heroes is good.

Wish it had been DC Heroes though...

At 9:21 AM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Brian said...

Most of these don't appeal to me, although I do want to try Warrior Knights and could be pleasantly surprised by Starcraft.

I think I've mainly kicked the habit. Losing a numbered (#1) copy of a game during my move helped

At 10:46 AM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Rob said...

Oh, and btw, I would get the arkham expansion (at least the first one), and War of the Ring expansion.

At 11:05 AM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

I think one reason I feel compelled to get the FFG expansions is that many/most of them also function as bug-fixes for the original game, with replacement cards, etc.

Of the totally new games on the horizon, I'd say Marvel Heroes is probably at the top of my wish list. Hopefully it hits the shelves by Christmas!

At 4:33 PM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Chad said...

I'm dying to get my hands on the Arkham, Descent, and TI expansions since those are my three favorite games of all time. The more the better I say.

I also have my eye on Marvel Heroes, Reins of Power, and Starcraft. Even though the comics pretty much suck nowadays I'm still a fan of the whole Marvel universe. Reins of Power is normally the kind of game I don't dig (not a war/history fan unless its ancient stuff), but the idea that you not only play your nation but the opposing political force in an opponent's nation clicks with me. And Starcraft. . . I just like sci-fi/space opera stuff and I want more games in that genre.

At 11:08 PM, March 18, 2006, Blogger Brian said...

Ben's comment got me thinking, which means a blog post. Short form -- "Expansions as bug fixes are a bad thing."

At 1:42 AM, March 19, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

Brian: "Expansions as bug fixes are a bad thing."

I don't know if I agree with that totally. On one side, it sucks to have the majority of playtesters be your actual release audience (only to shovel the tweaks back on them at a price). However, I think most of FF's expansions have just tied up all the loose ends and made the experience better overall. All of the games are playable without them obviously, but with the expansions enough feedback and play has gone into the process to yield a special bonus to those devoted. In short, I feel they are a good thing on the whole.

As for what I'm looking forward to...Blue Moon City is #1 (I'm a Blue Moon fool), Marvel Heroes #2, and LotR expansion #3. I'll wait until Ben buys everything else to try it out!



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