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GlassJaw

non-bolded rulebook?

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Is the new Commodore Edition the only planned version of the rulebook?  I'm thinking about getting into a DW and a friend just let me borrow the rulebook for the weekend to check out.  Just opening the book made my eyes glaze over.  As someone with a technical writer background, this book is close to unreadable.  I really like the models and fluff of the DW world but this book gives me serious doubts on whether I want to even bother.  :unsure:

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Sadly my experience has been the same.  I recently got a couple people interested in DW since 2.0 was coming.  One of them pre-ordered the book like I did, but both of us are going cross eyed trying to read the book.

 

I love the models/background, worse case I'll still pick them up and either play the game wrong or use other game rules for them.

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Glass Jaw, I think wrinting for engineers and wargames are rather different disciplines. As a metrologist, process engineer and lecturer, I believe that wargames rules require a specific instant point accessabilty with out recourse to the 1.2, 1.2 ect numbering structure present in technical documents. The key points in a set of wargames rules tend to be more singularly discrete in their manner and some what less dependant , but not entirely so, on sequential logicial concept presentation. While technical documemtation and reports are more dependant upon the sequence of data presetation for the latter sections to make any sense.

 

While presonally I'd like a set of wargames rules structured like a technical report, test report or academic paper, I'm not sure if they would appeal to every one and could be a bit off putting, plus, dare I say it, "too technical in their feel". A set or wargames rules needs to be something you can dip into and out of easily and not necessarily in the right order.

 

There also no harm in adding post it notes or tabs to the rule set to help quick access. I'll agree that the bold text is over done and some of the diagrams were clearer in the previous edition. But the DW set are far from the worst or least accessable rules I've seen.  Possibly approach them from a drifferent perspective. That is: start with the quick reference section or the quick play sheet that will emerge as free PDFs then use the rules to explain queries that arise from these. I think you will find that the need to access the rules will diminsh very quickly after a few games. 

 

The strength of DW is to see it a simple core mechanics of: squadron by squadron activation, exploding dice, linked or seperate fire, dice reduction with damage and the use of turn templates for movement. The rest such as MARS, Generators and weapon types are layers that surround the core.

 

When I'm running intro games and teaching people DW, I don't sart with the book as such: Rather I start with the ship stats, and explain the meaing of each part in the following sequence:

1) [DR, CR, MV, HP]

2) Then I move to the range bands and explain how diffent weapons have different numbers of dice at each range band

3) [AP, AA, CC, IR]

4) Min Move, Turning limit, Turning Template, Squadron size.

5) Finally a brief explination of MARS , but not in depth.

 

The worked examples are in the following sequence:

1) Basic firing - Line of sight, dice pooling and resolving hits

2) Movement and using a turn template

 

The first few games can avoid Support air squadrons and boarding, just focus on movement and firing and keep MAR use to a minimum. After that each layer can be progressively added with more games.

 

The other point is that a wargame is as much a narrative process as it is an excercise in probability and vectors. By appraching it in the narrative sence as long as the story is effectively told the minuatie of the rules becomes less significant.

 

I apologise if my warbelling may seem excessive or in any way patronising, thats not my intent at all. I just believe that wargames rules are a very distinct litery construct, that can't be approached in the same manner as other explanatory compositions.   

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Glass Jaw, I think wrinting for engineers and wargames are rather different disciplines.  

 

As someone who has done technical writing for the milirary, RPG design, and now systems design for video games, they really aren't.

 

And I was only commenting on the excessive use of bold type.  Whatever the discipline, that would be unacceptable.

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As someone who has done technical writing for the milirary, RPG design, and now systems design for video games, they really aren't.

 

And I was only commenting on the excessive use of bold type.  Whatever the discipline, that would be unacceptable.

Fully agree with you on the bold type issue. It does'nt make them unreadable, just maybe less readable.

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But the DW set are far from the worst or least accessable rules I've seen.

 

A set or wargames rules needs to be something you can dip into and out of easily and not necessarily in the right order.

 

1) the ARE the worst or least accessible rules you've seen for DW.

 

2) agreed, and this book is neither.

 

too be clear the Game is failry solid I was and still am a huge fan, but the book is the weakest link by far.

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Had this same discussion the other night. I like the rules, plays a lot better however the style of the print is difficult to read. Wont change my interest in the game or joy at the new rules... just a little suprised at the choice of fonts.

Could be i am indoctrinated by work (gov job) but we are taught that the use of bold and underlining is the equivalent of shouting and swearing! :-)

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Anyone have the quick start book from the box set? Is it any more straight forward?

Which book do you mean? The Admiral Edition softcover is exactly the same as the Commodore Edition, but without the story and stats, and the A5 campaign booklet doesn't contain the rules, relying on you to refer to the main book.

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Which book do you mean? The Admiral Edition softcover is exactly the same as the Commodore Edition, but without the story and stats, and the A5 campaign booklet doesn't contain the rules, relying on you to refer to the main book.

 

I didn't know the two were laid out exactly the same way.

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A little late to the party, but I doubt there will be a non-bloody eyes version anytime soon. I enjoyed the game more than I enjoyed my dice rolls. I haven't decided what to do yet, but I may just have to walk away from the game. It's kind of hard to play the game if you can't stand to crack the rulebook open.

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A little late to the party, but I doubt there will be a non-bloody eyes version anytime soon. I enjoyed the game more than I enjoyed my dice rolls. I haven't decided what to do yet, but I may just have to walk away from the game. It's kind of hard to play the game if you can't stand to crack the rulebook open.

Sad to hear that your thinking of walking a way from a game because of the formatting of the rule book but depending on what your having issues with you can try having a look at Nucreams PDF resources (thread on first page) and copying the MARs section... that plus asking a few question in the rules / faction thread should get you through.

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I have to chime in my agreement here. The rulebook needs a going over by someone who's good at intuitive structuring and readability.
 

Actually, my biggest gripe is the unpleasant (and incomplete) multi-level index. I would suggest going for a traditional single-level, alphabetical, exhaustive list next time.

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I'm going to chime in too! Yeah, the rulebook is so hard to read. I've been trying to plow through it but damn...it is just rough on the eyes. When you are looking at a paragraph, and almost every other word is bolded...no. Just no. Also, the layout has me really confused. In terms of quality, I love the book, in terms of readability, I hate it. God help someone who has no Spartan background in trying to learn the game from the book.

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As someone who's purchased, read through and played with both version 1 and version 1.1...  This ruleset is an improvement!

 

But yes, it is really hard to read.  (and truth be told, maybe it isn't an improvement...  I actually managed to finish reading v1 and v1.1, but I just gave up on this one.  I'd like to blame being distracted by our toddler, but maybe it's because this rulebook is just harder to read...)

It's a shame Spartan has such a tough time with rulebooks.  Their games are so fun, but the rules are just awful.

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I think the issue with the book is less about all the bold and more the rather scattered nature of the rules, as well as a lack of clear referencing/indexing. I recall having to flip between three separate chapters just to fully understand what happens when SAS fight each other.

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I play Advanced Squad Leader, these are a walk in the park, comparatively. That said I find the Commodore edition is never used if you have the Admiral's edition handy. There is an unmet need out thee for the Admiral edition. 

I use the various reference sheets more than anything else. You can teach the game using nothing else. They are that good. I use the rule book as a reference.

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I like it.

Reading it for the first time seemed strange to me indeed.

But quickly looking something up during play is quite comfortable and you instantly know it's a "technical game term". (GW uses italics for special rules for example - so formatting text is nothing new - but the massive use is)

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