Just to be 100% clear, the project knows that variance and evocative rules (my definition above) are wanted by some players.
Hence e.g. battle focus. And I am hoping that the next release of WotDG, and the first release of the DL book, will both have things in that players read and go "cool!". Whether those are specifically the things that will scratch yours and Kristian's itches, I cannot be sure of course.
...But do they understand why?
Because if they don't understand why some players want variance and 'evocative' rules, then the execution is going to be disappointing, and then there's going to be another round of the same "What did you do??" vs "Why don't you like it??" vs "How could you possibly think I would like that???" back and forth every time everything gets released.
Presumably the rules team at the time (it was before my time) thought that the game was better without hidden.
I suspect, there were at least several that didn't understand why people liked it and didn't expect the level of reaction that occurred.
Related to this, I'm confused as to why you think it is a problem to separate variance and epic moments?
I think one of the issues is that rules that you are lumping together were removed/opposed for different reasons.
I miss them for ONE reason: they were "cinematic" elements in an altogether-too-abstract gaming system.
So three or four completely separate, entirely unrelated rules design decisions were made for three or four completely separate, entirely unrelated reasons. But they all had the same net effect: the game is now much less "cinematic."
So let me go back and correct myself: the complaint is not that T9A hasn't verbalized an explanation on why the Hidden special rule had to go.
The complaint is "What about the cinematic?"
The complaint is that either nobody ever asked that question during rules design, or else whomever did ask that question was overruled. Repeatedly.
The complaint is that the "cinematic" is important to me, and it doesn't seem to be very important to T9A.
That's the root of this "tournament vs casual" rhetoric, IMO. I agree it isn't nearly as simple as that...but I don't think that perception is ever going to go away. I think it's the inevitable result of T9A being created by a handful of high-level tournament players who wanted a tournament-ready game that doesn't need to be comped. Anything that doesn't directly contribute to that central design goal of the project becomes lower priority.
And that's why I think it's a mistake to completely separate high-variance mechanics and more "cinematic" elements in this type of discussion: deciding to remove them came from entirely different places. But the request to keep them comes from the same place.
All of this "tournament vs casual," "balance vs fun" discussion boils down to a single exchange:
Me: "Make the 'flavor' of the rules higher priority."
T9A: "Okay, so long as it doesn't interfere with balance, speed-of-play, army differentiation, crackdown on potentially abusive elements, removal of invisible unit upgrades, and all-inclusive misinterpretation-proof rules."
Me: "...That's not what 'higher priority' means."
And I understand where T9A is coming from: they have a long list of priorities that come first, and I don't get to choose what's on that list or in what order. (I especially don't get to, since I don't even play this game anymore and just read the board sometimes on slow evenings or weekends...)
I think the problem might be that T9A wants to cater to people like me without actually having to cater to people like me: the project wants to start including some more narrative, evocative, cinematic elements that more narrative-minded players will enjoy...but only so far as it doesn't interfere with the "real" game mechanics.
That's what I think is the central issue. I don't want T9A to "make room" for the cinematic. I want the cinematic to be center stage.
The cinematic is never going to be center stage in this project.
I get that.
There are a lot of people on this forum who don't get that yet.
And they're the ones complaining that the 'flavor' was taken out of the game. They're the ones complaining about "tournament vs casual" and "balance vs fun."
They're the ones T9A needs to reassure right now. If the project wants to keep them (and I think it does) then the project needs to really understand what their complaints are.
I'm just trying to help bridge that communication gap.
The post was edited 2 times, last by Salgar ().