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  #1  
Old February 14th, 2008, 09:24 AM
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Default What's Next?

Now that the "playtest" for MGT is over, what's next? From what I can tell, the badly flawed T/E system and fussy initiative system will be implemented pretty much the way they were in v1.0 the playtest document.

The Starship operations and combat system as defined in the playtest document are defective and completely worthless for gameplay. The same is true of the starship economics system. Weapon damage is purportedly gonna be revised, but no details on it yet.

Will Mongoose dare to release a "last chance playtest" version of MGT?

I predict that one of two things will happen:

1. Mongoose will realize that the design team for MGT is hopelessly incompetent and scrap the current version of MGT and order a redo. Since it's hard to imagine a worse game than the current version, this new version almost has to be better.

2. Despite knowing that the game is, at best, not ready for prime time, Mongoose will foist it on a largely unsuspecting gaming public, where it will enjoy good initial sales.* As the defects are exposed publicly (by an RPG fandom that is generally not as nice as I am), the line will flounder. IF mongoose made a significant up-front payment to MWM, they will have no choice but to try to salvage it. So we'll see a second edition that purports to fix the defective mechanics -- and will do so with marginal success. MGT will reinforce the stereotype of Traveller as an old school, needlessly complex dinosaur. MGT will likely be the final version of Traveller. Well, I guess 31 years is a good run.

*This prediction assumes that word does not get out of the statistical flaws in the T/E sytstem or about how fiddly the combat system is. Nostalgia should push a fair number of sales of the initial book.

Vegas money is on #2, but I can hope for #1.

As an aside, Mongoose finally banned me from the MGT forum for, among other things, my "hostility" and "personal attacks" against posters. Of course, I defy anyone to find a single post where I attacked a poster, unless it was in response to a personal attack; even then I generally do not make direct attacks. I have relentlessly questioned the competence of the design team; but even there, I gave ample examples of why I questioned their competence. I had no idea they were so delicate... Of course, Mongoose doesn't mind criticism. Ah well, c'est le guerre. I actually lasted longer than I figured I would <shrug>.

Last edited by tbeard1999; February 14th, 2008 at 09:44 AM..
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  #2  
Old February 14th, 2008, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
I predict that one of two things will happen:

1. Mongoose will realize that the design team for MGT is hopelessly incompetent and scrap the current version of MGT and order a redo. Since it's hard to imagine a worse game than the current version, this new version almost has to be better.

2. Despite knowing that the game is, at best, not ready for prime time, Mongoose will foist it on a largely unsuspecting gaming public, where it will enjoy good initial sales.* As the defects are exposed publicly (by an RPG fandom that is generally not as nice as I am), the line will flounder. IF mongoose made a significant up-front payment to MWM, they will have no choice but to try to salvage it. So we'll see a second edition that purports to fix the defective mechanics -- and will do so with marginal success. MGT will reinforce the stereotype of Traveller as an old school, needlessly complex dinosaur. MGT will likely be the final version of Traveller. Well, I guess 31 years is a good run.

*This prediction assumes that word does not get out of the statistical flaws in the T/E sytstem or about how fiddly the combat system is. Nostalgia should push a fair number of sales of the initial book.

Vegas money is on #2, but I can hope for #1.
LOL! No, wait, why don't you stop being so coy and tell us what you really think

I suspect #1 just ain't true: the designers are Mongoose... okay, a part of Mongoose... and Gareth is content with its core mechanics! Savor the word: content. If the market disagrees as strongly as you, then the line will suffer. But, maybe it's better to suffer up front than down the line?

Anyway, when one jots down data points, oftentimes one will find some wild marks on the extremes, which are often excluded for statistical purposes. I might say that you're a wild mark. But, I don't really know that. You might just be a more vocal one. In which case Gareth is the wild mark. As divergence increases, the other side appears more extreme. Something like that.

Okay, maybe Matt will put the brakes on it, but they don't live in a soap-opera goldfish bowl, so if there's strife, they're not tellin'. Kudos to their professionalism, by the way.

#2 seems to be the way Mongoose works, although one might argue that their attitude toward said product may be more like contentment rather than reservation. Issue the rules, then issue version 2 in time, if it's needed, with accumulated fixes. Don't many of their games work out this way?

#2 seems to be the "New Jersey Approach" to game design: get something that works out the door, and don't polish it, because people want it. Then take the time to gauge reactions and work on the revision. I note that Marc seems to be taking the "MIT Approach" to game design this time: get everything the way he wants it, all polished up, and take forever. Not advisable for running a true business, but great if you've got a hobby.

And make no mistake: we're mostly hobbyists here, so we have the gift of unlimited time to polish our preferences.
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Last edited by robject; February 14th, 2008 at 11:54 AM..
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  #3  
Old February 14th, 2008, 12:14 PM
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Traveller is back with a boom!

2008 sees the release of the all new Traveller RPG, with the supplements and support you can expect for any game from Mongoose Publishing.

Based on the 'Classic Traveller' rules set, streamlined and updated for the 21st Century, the Traveller main rulebook will provide everything you need to explore the universes of science fiction settings. Starting with the Original Traveller Universe, Mongoose will quickly be expanding the settings available for this game to encompass Judge Dredd, Strontium Dog, Starship Troopers and many more.

Look out for the Traveller rulebooks and core supplements, in their traditional minimalist black covers on the shelves of your local games store soon!

.................................................. ..........................................

Based on the 'Classic Traveller' rules set ......... well yes, kinda?

streamlined ............... not that I can tell?

updated ............. all the T/E stuff and other new broken bits?

the Traveller main rulebook will provide everything you need to explore the universes of science fiction settings ..... they are jokeing right?

.................................................. .........................
Right now I just hope the supplements and OGL rule set will have enough in them, that I can use them for my ATU setting without to much work. If they go with the 3.2 version of the rules without fixing alot of stuff MGT is in for a bumpy ride
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  #4  
Old February 14th, 2008, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by robject View Post
LOL! No, wait, why don't you stop being so coy and tell us what you really think
Well, you know, I hate to have to be so frank.

And Frank hates it too <rimshot>.

Quote:
#2 seems to be the way Mongoose works, although one might argue that their attitude toward said product may be more like contentment rather than reservation. Issue the rules, then issue version 2 in time, if it's needed, with accumulated fixes. Don't many of their games work out this way?

#2 seems to be the "New Jersey Approach" to game design: get something that works out the door, and don't polish it, because people want it. Then take the time to gauge reactions and work on the revision. I note that Marc seems to be taking the "MIT Approach" to game design this time: get everything the way he wants it, all polished up, and take forever. Not advisable for running a true business, but great if you've got a hobby.
Well, I guess I favor the MIT Approach. It took me and my developer 2 years to get Fistful of TOWs 2 out and will probably have taken 3.5 years to get FFT3 out by the time we actually get it out.

Of course, this is working part-time. Working full time on the design, we could have probably gotten these games out in 6 months and 9 months respectively. And that's a game that is far more detailed in both systems and data than any RPG. I'd imagine that we could get a Traveller version out in 4 months or so, working full time. Of course, we use computers extensively to model our mechanics, so glaring statististical flaws are uncovered long before playtesters see the system (and invest themselves personally in defective mechanics). Playtesting has been short and highly focused and the result in the case of FFT2 was a game that has been remarkably well-received. And given that historical miniature grognards are some of the grumpiest people on Earth, that's an accomplishment I take pride in.

So I guess I don't really buy the argument that Mongoose is releasing MGT in a poor quality state due to a business exengency. Seems to me that the answer must be:

1. They disagree with me and think it's fine; or

2. They don't care whether it's crap and don't care whether they deceive purchasers who at least expect a game to be free of major flaws.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
As an aside, Mongoose finally banned me from the MGT forum for, among other things, my "hostility" and "personal attacks" against posters. Of course, I defy anyone to find a single post where I attacked a poster, unless it was in response to a personal attack; even then I generally do not make direct attacks. I have relentlessly questioned the competence of the design team; but even there, I gave ample examples of why I questioned their competence. I had no idea they were so delicate... Of course, Mongoose doesn't mind criticism. Ah well, c'est le guerre. I actually lasted longer than I figured I would <shrug>.
So far you've been pretty controlled here. That said, there are a couple of comments about the MGT designers that yeah I could see them labeling a personal attack. Probably not the best idea to call folks incompetent (there or here).

Just continue to play nice here and you'll be fine

By the way, does that make you a Banneded Mongoose?
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  #6  
Old February 14th, 2008, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by hunter View Post
So far you've been pretty controlled here. That said, there are a couple of comments about the MGT designers that yeah I could see them labeling a personal attack. Probably not the best idea to call folks incompetent (there or here).

Just continue to play nice here and you'll be fine

By the way, does that make you a Banneded Mongoose?
<golf clap> That should have had a carbonated beverage-nose interaction warning.

Yeah, calling them incompetent was too much. It would have probably much better to just imply it.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Zowy View Post
Traveller is back with a boom!
More of a k-thunk, really.

Quote:
2008 sees the release of the all new Traveller RPG, with the supplements and support you can expect for any game from Mongoose Publishing.
That sounds like a threat...

Quote:
Based on the 'Classic Traveller' rules set, streamlined and updated for the 21st Century
In other words, "...almost unrecogizable except for the parts that we didn't have time to make pointless, unnecessary changes to..."

Quote:
Based on the 'Classic Traveller' rules set ......... well yes, kinda?
I think that they are using the Hollywood definition of "based on" which means that "the names are mostly the same; any other resemblance is purely coincidental."

Quote:
streamlined ............... not that I can tell?
Given that the defining attribute of MGT is "pointlessly fiddly", this is an especially dishonest statement. This is what we lawyers call "fraud in the inducement"... EDIT: BIG FREAKIN' This is not an accusation of actual fraudulent conduct, just a joke. Nor am I seriously asserting that the statement is it any more factually challenged than most advertising copy.

Quote:
they are jokeing right?
If only they were...

Last edited by tbeard1999; February 15th, 2008 at 02:58 PM..
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Old February 14th, 2008, 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
Given that the defining attribute of MGT is "pointlessly fiddly", this is an especially dishonest statement. This is what we lawyers call "fraud in the inducement"...
*sigh* and just when I had complimented your control so far on CotI...

While I respect your opinion of MGT you are going to have to tone down the rhetoric and hyperbole a bit. I try to be pretty lenient in my moderation here, but statements like this are definitely crossing the line. If you are a lawyer you know that the above statement is flat out BS.

That's a warning. Next time its a short vacation. If it happens thrice, you are out.
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  #9  
Old February 15th, 2008, 10:42 AM
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*sigh* and just when I had complimented your control so far on CotI...

While I respect your opinion of MGT you are going to have to tone down the rhetoric and hyperbole a bit. I try to be pretty lenient in my moderation here, but statements like this are definitely crossing the line. If you are a lawyer you know that the above statement is flat out BS.

That's a warning. Next time its a short vacation. If it happens thrice, you are out.
Tried to PM you and got this message: hunter has chosen not to receive private messages or may not be allowed to receive private messages. Therefore you may not send your message to him/her.

So I'm posting this publicly.

Hunter, I honestly found this to be a surprising reprimand.

I'm not trying to be difficult here, just trying to understand the contours of allowable conduct (recognizing that to certain extent, this is unavoidably a subjective call).

To be clear, I was not accusing Mongoose of fraudulent conduct. I don't make public legal accusations; I do it through demand letters and legal petitions And I damn sure don't do that without an upfront fee negotiation.

It honestly never occured to me that anyone would construe my statement as a serious accusation. So, would the sentence have been allowable if I'd placed a smiley face or some disclaimer that this was a joke?

In hindsight, I suppose that anytime I make a statement invoking legal terminology, I should clearly indicate whether it's a serious opinion.

In any case, I do think that the point was valid--it is absurd to claim that the MGT systems are "streamlined" (at least as that word is currently defined by the English speaking world).

And while I can appreciate the external value of a public reprimand, I guess I'm too much of a lawyer to avoid noting that the accused ought to be given a chance to explain, apologize, or otherwise defend himself before sentence is passed. Of course, if someone is being completely unreasonable or irrational, then they aren't worth the trouble and I'd hammer them too.

EDIT: It occurred to me that the system of repimands are actually pretty fair, in contrast to other forums. You didn't jump immediately to banning (or even short term suspension). So, my above comment probably overstates the case a bit.

Not complaining about unfairness here, just noting that a private warning would have sufficed in my case. But no harm done.

It's your forum and your rules, and I'll respect them as long as I know what they are.

Last edited by tbeard1999; February 15th, 2008 at 11:10 AM..
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Old February 15th, 2008, 03:41 PM
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I chose to publicly comment on reprimands to make clear to everyone that certain actions will not be tolerated.

As a lawyer you should know (and based on your post you do) that statements like the one you made could be and likely will be misinterpreted on the Internet.

And frankly the comment was out of line regardless of interpretation.

Basically just tone down the rhetoric and slams ok? You can get your point across without the added hype and yes baiting (even though you may not mean it that way).

On responding to warnings, etc; you can either email me directly or you can PM one of the other mods.

Now lets all get back to the original discussion at hand.
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