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CAV FLUFF


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Ideally, this is to demonstrate how player participation can shape a backdrop. A little creativity goes a long way, and could turn even the most "mundane" ruleset into an epic. You just gotta be able to build from a thought, thats all.

 

I think with CAV in its current state the problem is that after a while you are forced to get creative to make it interesting.

 

I'd go so far as to say CAV COULD be a great game but hasn't quite reached that status yet. Hopefully Reaper revises it some, and opens it up a little.

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Ideally, this is to demonstrate how player participation can shape a backdrop. A little creativity goes a long way, and could turn even the most "mundane" ruleset into an epic. You just gotta be able to build from a thought, thats all.

 

I think with CAV in its current state the problem is that after a while you are forced to get creative to make it interesting.

 

I'd go so far as to say CAV COULD be a great game but hasn't quite reached that status yet. Hopefully Reaper revises it some, and opens it up a little.

yup

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This dicsussion has come up quite a bit and its always with CAV fans, however, I'd like to point out that CAV fans are few and far between at the moment. I made this argument in another discussion on Warlord, about the market being flooded and having to come out with a really kick butt project but in all honestly, you can't determine whether a game is kick butt or not by what a few people on some fan sites say. I use CAV as a great example of this. It's an OK game, and my guess is its probably doing OK in the gaming market.

I KNOW everyone on this site is satisfied, or atleast the most outspoken are, and no one wants to risk the wrath of the reaper gods, but really, I'm a regular gamer, and I get out and game in the public as often as possible, and I keep hearing the same dang things so I can't be terribly off in my feelings about the game. Everyone I have talked to, old CBT fans, new wargaming fans, all that, constantly complain about essentially one thing with the game - the lack of color. for the first year the game was out I didn't even touch it because all the CAV's looked essentially the same to me. Thank god that has been fixed with new releases. however KAMUT the issue is not whether players can be creative, you have to realise some of use spend waaaay too much time as it is being creative and sometimes we just want to sit down and not have to think too hard about what we are doing. Gamers also like choices and if the game system itself isn't overhauled then its going to paint itself into a corner. Why would anyone want to purchase a game system, then have to come up with all the interesting stuff for it?

 

I go on this rant about once a week or so, maybe once a month, could be a cycle of the moon or something I guess but it frustrates the heck out of me to see a kick butt miniature company come out with mediocre product to support those minis. I wasn't around for Dark Heavens but from what I understand I should be glad I wasn't. You don't put together a great team of artists and creative minds like this and then go for the punt, you go all the way if you catch my meaning. It just smacks more of trying to be safe or trying to hard to support minis production (never an issue with Reaper I am sure since they have atleast in my area, slowly been gaining popularity).

 

the simple fact of the matter is KAMUT or anyone else who may be listening, is that gamers want creativity, not only do they want cool background and great rules but they want to be able to flex their own creative muscles, and most of them desire a strong baseboard from which to do that. You don't provide that and you fall flat on your face or end up swimming in mediocrity.

 

Other then your campaign and one or two events run by local BL peeps, my CAV generally sit around on the shelf waiting patiently for a game system to match their coolness....

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See, I'm the exact opposite way. I got into CAV because it was a fun game to play and played fast, not b/c I cared whether the Rach had an outpost on planet XYZ. The biggest reason why I stopped playing BattleTech was because the game is overrun by people who are more concerned with the fiction and the fluff than they are the game itself.

 

At 30 I don't have the time anymore to name every mechanic in the Griffins' II Corp, nor do I want to. I want a game that's easy to learn, enjoyable to play, provides a few layers of strategy and has kickass miniatures and that's what I get.

 

I'm not saying that I wouldn't be happy with a CAV novel, RPG or Syde's Guide, I'm just saying its not the end all, be all of my gaming experience. There's got to be some happy medium between where CAV and BT are now in relation to fluff, hopefully Matt and company can get things there in time.

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There's got to be some happy medium between where CAV and BT are now in relation to fluff, hopefully Matt and company can get things there in time.

 

While I didn't have a problem with the depth of CBT fluff, I think finding that balance is key in all games. In my book fluff should be plentiful and consistant, especially with game rules but it shouldn't be overpowering or misleading.

I honestly would have been happier with CAV just for starters if there were no alien races. I look at other games that include alien or non human races and you can always tell who made what. In CAV, other then a few Ucorp signature shapes and designs, you can't tell one from the other. It would have been better to just make CAV a futuristic Earth based game then galaxy spanning. More consistant with the look and feel of the game and minis anyway.

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Chrome your comment above had me LMAO because lets face it no-one makes you take any notice of fluff. There are no game police. In CBT some people played very much with restricted mechs based on house / clan and would worry about time lines etc and maybe use the unit rules etc. Other people would buy the BMR and some figures and never read a sinlge line of fluff. The whole point of fluff is it add spice to a game that otherwise is just a complex version of chess with luck thrown in as well as skill, but it is down to each group of players to decide whether they care about that fluff or not.

 

I would love to see some offical fluff start to come out, but I would also like enough holes to be leavt in the universe that people can populate regions with their own fluff.

 

Stuart.

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OK, Red

yes, your making a lot of valid points but your still missing the big one.

 

Reaper knows this already. I can vouch for that just by some of the discussions going back and forth with Matt Ragan himself. Albeit some of them discussions, have been a little heated at times, mostly on my part cause I get a little on the sensative side with things.

 

But ultimitely, there is more going on than a lot of people realize; I'm not clear of the details myself but I can see for certain, they have a gameplan and their sticking to it; and their going to surprise the heck out of everybody when they do "bless us".

 

Keep this in mind, Red; these guys do much more than just invent rules, playtest them and come up with minis. They do have an "ear to the streets", everything being said; they're listening. furthermore, they know the market pretty well, from a business perspective too; meaning marketing reports and customer surveys, yada, yada.

 

Unfortunately on Chrome's statement, I would probably be one of those cats more interested in the CBT fiction, so I can sympathesize with what he's saying. Some guys just want to play the game, I can respect that.

 

Really, I fell in love with CAV because of the action mechanics; the upgrade tables were one of the first things I looked at, and I was hooked. All these "little short-comings" were either corrected, or I found away around within the rules. For some stuff that just didn't satisfy my "tactical sense", I just created myself or borrowed from other gaming groups.

 

The first CAV I bought was actually a Starhawk V (hmmmm), I remember having to look at this ghastly thing for an hour deciding if my money was well spent. I was comparing the "Combat Discipline" to what is exercised in Battletech. Remember, what happens when KAMUT is mechwarrior in a Summoner? and I tweaked that brute to precision...... I was always used to versetility so the idea of "paired weaponry" was somewhat discouraging.

 

Understanding the system more, I realized the "tactical sense" that when into it. Yes, it could be made into a VERY COMPLEX system that would almost play out like a tactical sim,(I know, I can take it there) but in keeping it reasonable for a broader group, it makes sense they want to keep it simple. Understand the terminology used, "Core Rules", that implies there is more to this game, but what they're doing is allowing the player to dictate his/her level of complexity they are willing to take this game. Hence, there is a LOT MORE coming....

 

So on the issue of fluff, I can see they did the same thing........ What your seeing is "core fluff". At this stage, freaks like me could take from the "core fluff" and build an epic. Right now, their just trying to get people to play the game before bogging them down with way too many little details. They will come, and in my personal situation, it comes as you play the game........

 

I can see why you would think Reaper's playing it safe with this project, at this stage, they have to. CAV is really yet to "establish itself" in the market, so when somebody says "Mecha", the first picture that comes to mind is not a CAV, instead being something from anime, or in the gaming world, a "mech".

 

Look at the difficulty trying to break these former Battletech players from their old mindset. Fortunately my CBT experience is more on the PC as opposed to the table top. If not for CAV, I would've had a bad outlook on CBT in general, considering how I feel about Poke-mech......

 

with everything said, I hope you realize why I'm telling everyone not to sweat the issue of fluff.

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well, like I said, I have hope for the future, I know the peeps at Reaper are creative, look at their minis! I just hope that CAV gets a little more depth both in game play and in background fluff in the future. I think until then it's going to be held back as one of those games that shine. The core rules are excellent for a quick game, James ran a 3 way CAV game at the last convention in about an hour and a half, but if its too simple it has no longevity. The game needs more options and more flexibility for it to fill out some and come into its prime.

As I said, I wait with bated breath for something "more".

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well, like I said, I have hope for the future, I know the peeps at Reaper are creative, look at their minis! I just hope that CAV gets a little more depth both in game play and in background fluff in the future. I think until then it's going to be held back as one of those games that shine. The core rules are excellent for a quick game, James ran a 3 way CAV game at the last convention in about an hour and a half, but if its too simple it has no longevity. The game needs more options and more flexibility for it to fill out some and come into its prime.

As I said, I wait with bated breath for something "more".

yup ::):

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Chrome I understand at 30 being more interested in just the game side of CAV.

 

See I want the fluff because at 29 with a kid I just don't have the time to make up the fluff like I use too. In your situation it doesn't matter if there is fluff or not because your main intrest is the combat game it's self. But without haveing the new fluff adding to the universe you isolate those that enjoy the fluff aspect of the game.

 

Now unlike others I am not going to say the game CAV is stale. To me a good game is never stale. But I will say the CAV Universe is stale. It is sitting there doing nothing.

 

To me fluff wise the JoR's are fluff teasers and after 3 years it is time for things to move in the universe. That said I am aware that Reaper is aware of the problem and I want to belive that they have a plan. But at some point you have to pull the trigger. If you don't you get forgotten.

 

Someone mentioned about CAV not yet establishing it's self. Well I don't thing it will with a Novelete that is 10 bucks and a JoR a year. Nothing but JoR makes the game seem like a mini only game which is fine. But if CAV is supose to be a mini only game there would have been no need for all the fluff in the rule book.

 

So to me it seems we curently only have half of CAV. We have the game. But were's the Universe? I that this is one of the reasons why post on the CAV boards have declined so much because there really isn't anything to talk about.

 

I always worry when I say anything that someone will take it as a attack. But it isn't this is just how I feel about the state of the game at this point.

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Chrome I understand at 30 being more interested in just the game side of CAV.

 

See I want the fluff because at 29 with a kid I just don't have the time to make up the fluff like I use too. In your situation it doesn't matter if there is fluff or not because your main intrest is the combat game it's self. But without haveing the new fluff adding to the universe you isolate those that enjoy the fluff aspect of the game.

 

Now that don't fly with me... I'm 33, my wife just delivered our 3rd child a few months ago, and I'm always writing something.

 

Look at it like this, CAV is a combined arms game, yet the first JoR focused on primarily CAVs right? Then the 2nd JoR really polished off that aspect....... I'm wondering what the 3rd JoR will bring us......

 

Fluff at this point centers around the production notes and technical data of each unit. the factions and UCOR data are just to give a backdrop, I can live with that considering the technical data is most relevent to me, gamewise.

 

Politics, business dynamics, ETC, ETC, are just gravy, they just give the game flavor, nothing more.

 

(caution food metaphor.)

So with this in mind, you see, Reaper gave you the "meat" without the gravy. That is intentional.....

 

If the meat is no good, the gravy is'nt going to hold it down for too long. Its then just a disguise to mask any screw ups. heck, you can pour gravy on garbage and it might be good for the first few bites.

 

I think the "meat" Reaper has provided is pretty good actually, and well thought out. So when they add the gravy (and they will) you will have a masterpeice on your hands, or at least something that could contend with older more established "institutions" like Battletech.

 

At this point, I can see their focus being on making sure the production and technical data matches the in game usage of said unit, and in some cases, a few hints here and there on how to best maximize the use of said unit. Its in there already.......

 

there isn't even a sense of urgency on the issue, like some people are making it out to be. I view the Reaper staff like Dexter's laboratory, always up to something. I think patience is the virtue here, sit back, relax, listen, watch, you might learn something.....

 

football talk- Read the play.......

 

Well, I'm sitting back watching with a smile, cause I'm on to these cats......

 

edit: Yes, I'm throwing in a few innuendo

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Now that don't fly with me... I'm 33, my wife just delivered our 3rd child a few months ago, and I'm always writing something.

 

Thta's unfair to say, sometimes it's a matter of priorities. For example, I am married, with no kids. However, I have martial arts 2-4 times a week, I paint miniatures and I like to actually get a game in from time to time. Pile all that on to a 45 hour work week minimum and things get stuck waaaaay down on the list for things I want to be doing with my time, creating fluff for a published game is one of them.

Here's the way I look at things, and I think KAMUT that your more the exception then the rule here. I play roleplaying games, mostly I game master, which means I expend alot of my free time and energy making that fun for my players. My chance to game is miniatures gaming. I don't want to have to spend a whole lot of time coming up with a universe to fill the void, but it is important to me to have some reference points when I play a game. It certainly makes designing campaigns and scenarios that much easier. Most of the wargamers I know are like that. They don't want to spend that much time creating the fluff behind a game because with the painting, the playing and life in general, it shouldn't be necessary, that's what game companies are for!

 

Politics, business dynamics, ETC, ETC, are just gravy, they just give the game flavor, nothing more.

 

believe it or not this is what makes or breaks a game and I think taht statement understates the value placed on background by your average gamer. Again this si where I think you are in a minority my freind. The technical data actually means less to me then anything else. Sure it's interesting to find out how tall your favorite CAV is, or how much it might weigh but for the most part that is really what I consider fluff. I'd rather know more about the culture behind the machine, why did they build it and who do they intend on using it the most. In CAV all cultures are essentially the same, so far.

 

 

there isn't even a sense of urgency on the issue, like some people are making it out to be. I view the Reaper staff like Dexter's laboratory, always up to something. I think patience is the virtue here, sit back, relax, listen, watch, you might learn something.....

 

In the gaming industry taking too much time can kill you. Gamers are a fickle lot anyway, and most now come from the MTV generation. If you can't produce at a reasonable rate and continue to improve, things go quickly down hill. Let's hope steady sales means that later on as more information get's translated into the game, those sales will start to rise and interest will be peaked.

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