Blog with criticism towards 9th age

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  • Blog with criticism towards 9th age

    Edit: obviously some people points out that the article is a troll/shill article (“e.g. cherry picking quotes”) If this is true, feel free to remove this post. My intention was not to troll - on the contrary I thought that some of the points the article brought up could help make the game better. But if the blog is judged to be troll/shill, then yes remove the post.

    Hi,
    I’m just sharing this blog post that was shared on the oldhammer community on facebook. It directs criticism towards the 9th age. I don’t necessarily agree with everything, but it has imo some points and maybe the 9th age crew can learn something from it.

    archive.is/5mUgp

    The post was edited 5 times, last by gilliwaken ().

  • The conclusions do not follow from the premises. Points are a mixed bag.

    Are we losing players? Possibly true. Action is being implemented to try and reverse that.
    It's a good issue to raise as a concern.

    Is AoS bashing helpful? Probably not, no. AoS has a lot of strong points. If it hadn't gone to round bases (which was NOT a necessary step) and had released with point buy - even provisional point buy - we wouldn't exist.

    Is our decision to create our own IP a mistake? No. No it is not. It's what we ARE, now - a new set of IP and game rules. They listed a tonne of similar projects, none of which I'd heard of. We might be smaller than GW or even KoW, but we're actually a notable game in our own right. Without the IP (and the ETC, and tonnes of hard workers) we'd be just another footnote. Still could be, but even big companies fail. We're a contender.


    Is the project too focused on balance?
    IMO, absolutely. This is a crippling issue that I keep bringing up at every turn. No team should be exclusively composed of pro players. Being a top level player requires a certain mindset, and having an entire team who have that same attitude towards the game has shot us in the foot time and time again. Balance is important, but you can't sacrifice "excitement" and "fun" to it forever, and contrary to what people say, "fun" is not synonymous for winning - or rather, there are people who play wargames to enjoy aspects of them other than strict victory/defeat, which means that you can't just balance everything, you also have to prioritize other agendas.



    Is this game like a CCG? Yes. And Magic: the Gathering -a CCG - is the ONLY tabletop game IN THE WORLD that's still competing with video/computer games as a major contender. CCGs can appeal to new players. It can be done.



    But I may be wrong, he may be completely correct, or it's possible the things we agree on are the bits we're both wrong about. Who knows.


    One other thing though: I believe 2.0 gold hitting was going to be the point for a marketing blitz.

    • The group should focus more on compatibility with other systems. Square bases or round bases shouldn't make a difference
    • The community should start a new website with a webshop and a paid membership. The current website is more a volunteer forum with many toxic threads and free downloads, paid by volunteer payments. Not very inviting, not generating enough money for agressive marketing.
    • Think about unequal battles. Blitzkrieg Commander II for instance, a WW2 Warmaster adaptation, explains that battles are never equal and has a system to make army lists deliberately different. But the inequality is rebalanced in the victory point system, an army that is 25% stronger needs 25% more victory points.
    • Quickstarter and tournament game should be more integrated. Simple basic rules and advanced tournament rules in one booklet. Now the Quickstarter appears to be an undervalued downgrade from the 'main' rules. Maybe this simple LotR/WHFB-style wargame with a 9th-age upgrade has more chance of survival among the casual players than a complex tournament game with a simplified 'pearls for the swines' edition.
    • Think about kickstarters. pay-to-print, and higher tournament entrance fees to finance T9A development costs.
    • Think about scenario books. For example, Et Sans Résultat is a Napoleonic mass battle game roughly based on the (outdated and overly complex) Empire rules. ESR is one of the many Napoleonic rulesets and not the most popular. The company however has published beautiful scenario books with conversion guidelines for other rulesets. In the same vein: why not rework a Battle of the Bulge campaign guide a "Fantasy Battle of the Bulge"-guide with several linked scenario's. background, a gallery and an online conversion scheme for AoS, KoW or other fantasy battle systems? Or give an outline how to link separate scenario's as a 'best of five'-campaign (like BKCII

    Just change everything!

    I mean, these are all fair suggestions; however, the blogger fails to take into account the unique challenges that T9A faces; namely, that for every change that is made, there is equally loud criticism that “too much is changing!” and, also, “not enough is changing!” If the game is dependant on retaining the fan base which WHFB appealed to, then moving further away from that is only going to alienate them more. AOS and KOW don’t have that issue.

    It also draws the correct conclusion that a volunteer run project shouldn’t be compared on a like for like basis with GW, Mantic, but then seems to underestimate what this means (or, instead, suggests just going professional with paywalls). Actually, paid membership seems to be the quickest way of killing this off.
    #freekillerinstinct
  • Alright. Enough is enough.

    Can all these paid GW shills just do one and leave us alone?!

    If you don't like T9A and think it has no future, great, keep it to yourself and play your favourite game.

    Nothing lasts forever, everything dies eventually, this is no shock, we don't need 50 posts a day on our forum telling us we're doomed and failing. It's the equivalent of posting letters through someones door telling them they'll die one day and their life hasnt been as productive and successful as it could have been.

    I'm generally not in favour of moderation but I'm almost getting driven to supporting it to just purge all these posts.
    Take a look at my painted army so far. Feel free to share a pic of yours!

    Pics of my ever expanding warriors army
  • Some of those quotes are hilarious.

    The blogger cherry-picked like mad to make sure the original point of a post was lost.

    Like the "anti-AoS post". Which actually had the user point out that AoS players used the "4+ it" rule to cheat all the time, got physically violent, refused to accept that some rules even existed etc etc.

    Clearly a paid shill blog.
  • Yeah, cherry picking and taking quotes out of context can give you pretty much any result you want. I looked up that first quote he referenced to in the chapter about bashing AoS, and it wasn't even about AoS. Not to mention using graphs based on cherry picked data. There might be some helpful and constructive stuff in that blog post, but it is drowned in bias that borders on hatred.
  • It was an interesting read and for analysis I think perception or possible perception is what the T9A team can take away from it. Discussion and reflection are good at times. Why at times? If you just discuss, nothing gets done.
    What I read from the article is a love of the style of game and a desire for supported continuity.

    The article in my opinion is not well structured and goes all over but makes many good points so anyone can argue anything with it. When you read it all and come to the end, it has a list of "fixes" and comments (could be organised and with a bit less redundancy). My criticism is meant in a constructive way.

    I agree with all the bias and personal opinion comments, simply because personal opinion is exactly that. Such opinions can result in voicing negative views, as is done in this article for example. ;)

    Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:


    • Stop the megalomaniac tone. 9th Age is no competitor for Games Workshop.
    • The group should focus more on compatibility with other systems. Square bases or round bases shouldn't make a difference.

    In competing with AoS for player attention the T9A project is a direct competitor in the fantasy market. I am sure there can be technical solutions to make the shape of bases obsolete. As long as such solutions are not available and accepted we have to deal with what we have. GW did not just add the shape, scale creep of miniatures made larger bases mandatory. So technical challenges aside there are new challenges thrown at this issue exactly because GW sees anything not GW made as competitors and they rightfully should.
    Just comparing tournaments, bases matter now for AoS since there is an official list of what bases to use and all are round-ish.

    Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:


    • The community should start a new website with a webshop and a paid membership. The current website is more a volunteer forum with many toxic threads and free downloads, paid by volunteer payments. Not very inviting, not generating enough money for agressive marketing.
    • Think about kickstarters. pay-to-print, and higher tournament entrance fees to finance T9A development costs.
    • Ask around. What do seasoned game designers like John Lambshead, Rick Priestley himself, Alessio Cavatore, Tomas Pirinen, Brian Ansell think of 9th Age? Is it good, is it good enough, what would they change?
    • Think about unequal battles. Blitzkrieg Commander II for instance, a WW2 Warmaster adaptation, explains that battles are never equal and has a system to make army lists deliberately different. But the inequality is rebalanced in the victory point system, an army that is 25% stronger needs 25% more victory points.

    In short I interpret this as "become a business", which results from a widespread misunderstanding of what T9A is. The project itself is open source and community driven by volunteers. It is non profit and will always be as per mission statement.
    By creating a customer base it is looking for industry partners to support the project with product independently. From a customer point of view this is very attractive because competition enforces good and evolving product. It is directly a copy of the model used in historical gaming, just focused on one game as opposed to fixed historical battles. Well, not exactly one game because the T9A project is an ongoing evolution of Warhammer Fantasy Battles. Almost all current product can be used in playing retro. With freedom of miniatures the T9A project is inclusive to any other fantasy miniature game and supporting company. Unlike historical gaming the player is fully free to make an army look the way they want it to look and that is where the T9A project is already branching out. Just not in themes, the game is for fantasy gaming, it allows for any army your fantasy can come up with. There are current limits for tournaments, which are good to keep effort needed manageable. But you can make a homebrew list, publish it and enlist people to help you grow and solidify your idea.

    In fewer words the T9A project is a core upon which you can build whatever you want already. Just be realistic and enterprising in making your ideas a reality within the project.



    Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:


    • Emphasize more the fun part of fantasy battling, not the tournaments and the advanced rules.

    This I personally support. It just took me some time to grasp how this works in the T9A project. Tournament players are perceived as being dominant because what they produce in rules is what gets seen in what you download. It is too easy to ignore the garnishing with art and the redesigned setting. Yes background could be more and there will be more soon. It has been undervalued and the community rightfully asks for it quite loud.
    What I had to learn is that the limitation only exists through acceptance. The T9A project offers opportunity to help shape the game in many ways. Not just volunteer or product support. Home rules have always been a thing and within the T9A project you can use the forum to work on your ideas, support ideas from others and share ideas in general.

    Use the forum as intended, get involved as much as you are comfortable with. Share and support the project. Unlike other games, your input actually matters in the T9A project. There is no need to accept limitations because right now, there are very few limitations and none you could not challenge by becoming a volunteer. Just keep in mind that it is a community project, so stay nice to and respectful of others.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Little Joe: changed links ().

  • The guy got a link on a website with high rank in Google Search and a couple of visits redirected from this site. For a new blog without much success a good thing to get positioning in Google fast.

    I don't even think he's getting paid by someone.

    Don't link such websites, they don't deserve it.
    Have you seen the yellow sign?

    The post was edited 1 time, last by yhandros ().

  • Edit: obviously some people points out that the article is a troll/shill article (“e.g. cherry picking quotes”) If this is true, feel free to remove this post. My intention was not to troll - on the contrary I thought that some of the points the article brought up could help make the game better. But if the blog is judged to be troll/shill, then yes remove the post.

    The post was edited 1 time, last by gilliwaken ().

  • Personally I enjoyed the article, and thought it was a good read. The article did not come off as toxic nor hateful in my opinion. But then again I might not be as invested in this game as some of you are, so maybe I am blind to the parts that register as toxic or hateful to you. :)
    I think it is interesting to hear other's point of view, and one does not have to agree with everything in there to enjoy reading about it.
    Like what is done with the quotes in the article, just cherry-pick the parts that we think we can learn from and go from there!

    The road to success is not paved with excuses and insults - instead let the 9th Age set an example on how a war game could and shoule be developed and done, and then just do it! ;)
    Drill the earth, it's no trouble; mining metal, making rubble.
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  • So, don't get me wrong, but. If this guy is wrong, it shouldn't be too hard to prove that in a discussion, like, you know, a group of grown-ups? Yet, his post in the "How to get new players" thread was deleted, for "trying and undermine with his misleading information,toxic blog", for god's sake, and you are frantically trying not to give direct link to his blog, claiming that he is a troll or was paid for that article. Thus, trying to completely avoid talking about the points he's making, and he did made a couple of very viable ones, especially about endless attempts to reach ideal balance, IMO. That's a hilarious way to take criticism, to say the least.
  • there is constructive criticism and then there is just trolling and being disrespectful, for one to just make account to post that sorta of thing is a dead give away what his motive is, also to note this same person has being spamming this on Facebook.

    There is rules, rules were broken reason why its gone.

    on the other hand, if management want's to reply to it they're more then welcome to =)
  • It is being discussed at a high level, we are not just ignoring it.
    Which doesn't mean to say we agree with the claimed problems and/or solutions of course...
    Ask not what the project can do for you, but what you can do for the project :)

    Don't forget that however convinced you are of your opinion on something in the project, or something it should/shouldn't do, there is someone out there holding on to the opposite belief just as strongly :D
  • Kallstrom wrote:

    The article did not come off as toxic nor hateful in my opinion.

    owl wrote:

    So, don't get me wrong, but. If this guy is wrong, it shouldn't be too hard to prove that in a discussion, like, you know, a group of grown-ups?


    My beef was the deliberate misquoting of people on this forum to further their agenda.

    I can give examples right now:


    Yatagarasu, from T9A Lectoring team, quarreled during AoS-games with AoS-players because his opponents played for fun. Thus he dislikes AoS-players as a group. he has
    not so much criticism of Age itself, but more so of the types of players I have encountered while playing.

    During an AoS game, he lectured his loose-on-rules-opponent about the charge rules, and was branded as "toxic" and "hyper-competitive".
    He calls the AoS-rules

    horrid (...) players getting rewarded for poor play (...) it just reeks of poor design and laziness (...) I would be happy if I never looked on a General's handbook again


    Now, keep in mind this was just a copy-paste job. So those empty quotes bits are literal. Let us look at the entire post:




    I have played close to a dozen games of AoS, and honestly, I think I'd be happy if I never played again. My complaints with the game are basically three-fold:

    1. My Playerbase - I'm starting on this one as it's not so much a criticism of Age itself, but more so of the types of players I have encountered while playing. I don't exactly find a game appealing when the players I play against brand me as "toxic" and "hyper-competitive", for trying to follow basic rules. An example was my third game of AoS, where my opponent moved 2 inches less than his maximum movement, then failed his charge by one, before arguing that he could have made the charge because he hadn't realised he could move further. Any game where I'm considered toxic for enforcing that he chose his movement and has to stick to it really isn't a game I want to be playing, and it belies the attitude of a lot of my local players, that playing fast and loose with the rules is acceptable because AoS is about "fun".

    2. Stormcast Eternals - These guys practically sucked the fun out of the last four games I played with a drinking straw. This might just be personal opinion, but plenty of people share it, that they need a cascade of nerfs. They seems to have access to everything they could ever need, along with some unique special rules that just completely break them. An example again, in one game, my opponent started with his entire army off the table, and essentially got to ambush with them all turn two. I can't think of a single way you could deploy or play to counteract an opponent who can do that. On top of that, the battleshock rules vastly favour them, as it is based off models slain, not wounds caused, meaning that you need to do 6 or 7 wounds to the unit to even have a chance of causing one to flee, whereas against single wound models, that many wounds would have a guaranteed flee.

    3. The Rules - This is probably my most egregious complaint, but so many things in the rules just do not sit well with me. For one, rolling to determine who gets subsequent turns. The possibility of someone getting two turns in a row is horrid, and when it has happened, it's lead to players getting rewarded for poor play, because they've been able to move into easy charge range, then charge, getting any bonuses they might get, while leaving themselves completely open for counter charges which turned out to be irrelevant because of a single dice roll. Furthermore, the "discuss ambiguous situations with your opponent or 4+ it" just reeks of poor design and laziness. It suggests that you and your opponent are in at least vague accord with each other, but I have witnessed players trying to do outrageous things, such as make charges that were clearly out, and when their opponent disagreed, default to "guess we 4+ it", essentially giving themselves a 50% chance to cheat. Any game that is intended to be played competitively, which I assume AoS is, as it has tournaments with prizes, should not have a rule that essentially decides the outcome of ruling issues on a coin flip.

    Those are my main issues, although I do have more fringe ones, and maybe if these were fixed, I'd consider playing AoS again. Until then, i would be happy if I never looked on a General's handbook again.



    Basically taking elements out of the quote for sensationalism and skipping on the actual point.
  • 2Stunt
    At which point he was disrespectful, could you point that out, please? The author was polite, and he was proving his point with all available statistics and arguments. Yes, maybe he was cherry-picking quotes, I can agree on that, but this kind of reaction, outright hating and unhealthy censorship only shows that he touched a couple of points you don't want to discuss. And this is a very bad sign, for a community-driven project.
  • Since this gentlemen has written a similair article before, where, even though he claims to be a laywer, decided it was a good idea to write my real life name in it, connecting me to my online name, I decided to ignore any of his statements afther that, since he didn't even take the common decency to apologise for it.

    As a man who has received several threats, ranging from pretty, to pretty dark ones, thanks to my work in the pr section of the staff I do not wish to have my real life name published without my permission, and he should have known better than that. Especially since he hides behind an online alias as well.
  • I changed the links in the quotes.

    A troll, maybe, it is hard to tell for me. The writer should not have done the attacks with quotes for sure, hence why I skipped that whole part in discussing it. And it does go all over with many loose threads, which I mentioned.
    Perception is what such articles do and ignoring or accepting them is not the right way. Of course you can't go discuss the subject every day. The way you discuss it matters of course and even trolling can be challenged.

    On the premise of perception, watching a discussion on the forum is a good way to get community feedback. It is being done on a forum you control and moderate by contributors that are interested. Having external discussion pointed out, positive or negative is community support, I do not see a problem there.

    EDIT: too many comments too fast. Blonde Beer giving context changes the whole discussion of course.

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Little Joe ().