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Von Calisson,

A big thank you to a super community

Three weeks ago, we asked the community for Full Magic Phase Proposals.

Now that the time has come, we got finally 81 83 84 86 replies!!! (please stop submitting, that’s already more than plenty :judge: ).

This is fantastic! So many people spending so much time to improve the game!
Let me tell you, it was worth trusting the community to participate.
Nobody had hoped for such an incredible show-up.
Sure, it will be a pain to analyze, but this kind of pain, we wish only more of it (well, to a point)!

After having given a glance to all submissions, a first feeling is that many of you have put lots of efforts. Some have investigated super-original systems, whereas many have concentrated on just one or another specific aspect they wished hard to change.
The fluff justifications were often a bit less developed but here as well, some members have put a real effort to explain how the veil performs. Lots of inspiration there.

A big, big thank you!

What comes next?

This is what was planned:
  • Asking community for full proposals for magic phase (done)
  • Getting two liters of black tea and starting hours of reading and evaluating... (in process)
  • Reading and discussing proposals within RT, picking best ideas from different proposals.
  • Implement in a new rulebook.
  • Publish for community play testing.
  • Assessing play testing feedback.

Well, it might take a little bit longer than anyone anticipated…

How will the Rules Team (RT) evaluate the submissions?
All will be read, at least once, at least by one person.
A rigorous process will allow sorting out the most interesting submissions.
But first of all, what is “interesting”?
Rules Guidelines were provided, so that the new magic would be both fun and IP-safe (understand: sufficiently different from another system we might happen to have practiced for a long time):
  • It should be a "Full" Magic Phase proposal, so not just one or few simple changes.
  • Magic should feel exciting to play both with and against in game.
  • Strategic-heavy, luck-lite: less skewed, but still not entirely predictable.
  • A familiar link: Spells and Paths should remain as they are as much as possible, but that doesn’t mean that armies cannot have their own unique ways of casting magic.
  • No Winds of Magic, only the Veil – how this is interpreted is up to you.

All inputs have some interest, but all do not have the same interest.
Obviously, many proposals fail the full proposal aspect. If they have an interesting concept it can be noted, but many are basically the system we have, which means they cannot become the basis of the new magic system. Quite possibly though, one or another part of these proposals will be annotated for further review.
Still, even if many submissions have only modest value for the interest of the changes they propose, at minimum they indicate some aspects of the current system which are perceived as the most problematic, and in which direction many wish it to be changed.

Once the most comprehensive and serious proposals will be identified, there will be fewer documents to work with. For them, the whole RT team will give a careful attention.

What follows is not yet completely established. There will be lots of discussions and liters of tea or coffee absorbed.
What could be anticipated is that two or three proposals could be merged into a backbone. Then all the notes taken here and there from pretty much all proposals would be reviewed to see if they would add value to the backbone.
The result would be tested internally, then adapted to the rulebook for beta-testing with the help of the community.

And finally, 2.0!

How to involve more the community?

All your submissions will give a lot of work to an already busy RT. But that was worth it, and it is definitively better to have too much community involvement than not enough.

As you realize, there is now a lot to read. A great lot.
The process will be tedious. There is a possibility that some good idea might escape the attention of the designated first reader.

But here, the community may help again.
Help would be useful, as long as it is actually helpful and does not just mean more work for the rule team.

And do you know what would be really useful?
Read all proposals, and list your Top 5 or Top 10, with a short comment (please, keep it short!).
You may post this here: Full Magic Phase Proposals: which ones are your preferred ones?

Despite several of you volunteering, at the moment, it seems unfortunately not convenient to task you with more than the above. Thank you nevertheless for your enthusiasm.

Lesson learned for T9A project: there is much more community energy to use than what we thought.
This time, the involvement of the community was made for the magic phase.
There will be other aspects of the rules which will be revised.
What we know now is what the community is able to produce: basically, plenty of ideas, some of them really interesting... but also this requires lots of work to sort them out.
For some envisioned changes, in particular those motivated by IP, there are not too many possibilities, so the added value of soliciting you is probably not going to justify the added workload.
But for other, selected changes, in particular those for which the rule team has no obvious best choice, we have now some arguments telling how useful it would be to involve once more the community.
No promise, but we shall see.

Now we know for sure: the community can be a suberb help.
Up to us to learn how best to use it.

On behalf of the T9A team.
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