Counsels of perfection ;-)

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jdesmond
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Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby jdesmond » Wed Nov 15, 2017 2:11 am

Salutations, gentlefolk !

Some minor suggestions that methinks you've thought of already...

1 - Please try to get new rules edition finished and uploaded in time for everyone to read at leisure, not 'on the ride to Lancaster'. Some confused people at Fall In there were.

Meshwesh - 1 - Mayhaps to the list of Thematic Categories could be added the beginning/ending dates for 'that era'. I ask myself, each time, is 'Middle Kingdom' before or after 'Mandate of Heaven', and usually guess wrong.

2 - And maybe list the Thematic Categories chronologically instead of alphabetically ?

3 - And mention somewhere if "these army lists have been substantially revised", so if made necessary, another necessary stand or two can be painted up in time

4 - And perhaps a printoutable list of all 648 armies and their dates. Would enable me to google the 'who are those guys' - Evagoris, for instance. Heard not of him before.

5 - And some great day we'll have army lists, printoutable with minimum waste of paper and ink...

"O why is the ocean
So terribly salted ?
I'd much rather that it
Be a chocolate malted."

Yours, John

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David Kuijt
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby David Kuijt » Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:24 pm

jdesmond wrote:Some minor suggestions that methinks you've thought of already...


Thanks, John. All reasonable suggestions. #3 may not work -- what you mean is "revised since last I looked at it seriously", which is in the eye of the beholder (depends upon the observer). That means that one person will want such notation, and another won't want it, and a third might get scared off upon seeing that any such notations exist. But the rest seem like good ideas. We'll talk about them all at our next meeting.
DK

jdesmond
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby jdesmond » Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:24 am

Salutations, gentlefolk !

OK, in the 'October 2017 Rules release summary of changes', in the middle of 'Minor rule changes', you had two lines about revaluing of Warriors and "army lists on Meshwesh have been modified". Now it was the case that I was bringing an Early German army to ye open tourney, and could not be called a disinterested party here, but methinks a post in 'Product Discussion' headlining "Warriors Point Value Revised - Army Lists Changed" would not have been a waste of electrons.

Regardless, my thanks and compliments to those who ran the Pike and Open tournaments. Had lotsa fun. Great competition!

My two cents, over and out.

Yours, John

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David Kuijt
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby David Kuijt » Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:59 pm

jdesmond wrote:Now it was the case that I was bringing an Early German army to ye open tourney, and could not be called a disinterested party here, but methinks a post in 'Product Discussion' headlining "Warriors Point Value Revised - Army Lists Changed" would not have been a waste of electrons.


Sorry that caught you off guard, John. It was the last part of a complex, evolving set of changes we had been working on for six or eight months, initiated by the fixes to Raiders and Warband, and closely tied to the finalized changes in how Difficult Terrain works in the rules. Our commitment has always been to make the rules the best we can. While we understand that convention gamers aren't always happy about the timing of the recent series of changes coming before conventions, delaying the rules changes until after conventions is worse in our eyes -- it takes away a critical opportunity to have gamers give us feedback and field test the changes one last time before they become final.

With any luck that will be the last major set of changes.
DK

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David Kuijt
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby David Kuijt » Fri Nov 17, 2017 7:32 pm

jdesmond wrote:Meshwesh - 1 - Mayhaps to the list of Thematic Categories could be added the beginning/ending dates for 'that era'. I ask myself, each time, is 'Middle Kingdom' before or after 'Mandate of Heaven', and usually guess wrong.

2 - And maybe list the Thematic Categories chronologically instead of alphabetically ?


I've been putting some work into the idea of describing the metadata associated with the Thematic Categories in Meshwesh this morning and afternoon, and it isn't as simple as it appears.

Not all Thematic Categories are temporal partitions. Some are largely temporal (Sea Peoples Invasions, Viking Seas -- although even there, those are only temporal partitions if you already assume a Western bias). Some are completely geographic (India and the Khyber Pass, Monsoon Region). Most are a mixture of both (Spread of Islam, Glorious Byzantium, Flower of Chivalry). None of them are set up with hard dates for start and end points -- they are focused upon reasonable opponent sets.

Many Thematic Categories overlap; some are even subsets of others (Sea Peoples Invasions is a proper subset of Chariot Supremacy, for example).

Thematic Categories are not all the same size.

The original concept of Thematic Categories was to assist organizers of tournaments and game-days in allowing an easy choice of a set of armies that all fall within a single large category, such that players who brought armies within that category to play battles with each other would all be playing historical matchups, or "nearly-historical" matchups. Battles that would not create a shudder of revulsion in those who like the historical aspect of Triumph.

So while I agree that it would be good to have some explanatory metadata associated with the Thematic Categories, I just wanted to point out that this morning's work has shown me that it is nowhere near as simple as just putting some dates in. Further, putting in dates will cause as much confusion as it fixes -- sure, it would allow players to realize that Mandate of Heaven comes before Warring States comes before Middle Kingdom. But it will also cause arguments or confusion as players ask "Hey, why is Middle Kingdom Egypt part of Chariot Supremacy, when Melukhan and Pre-Vedic Indian is not?" M-and-PV-Indian goes for 40 more years than Middle Kingdom Egypt, and neither of them have any Chariots..."

To recap: some metadata (explanatory text, possibly dates, possibly description of geographic extent) associated with the Thematic Categories seems like a good idea, but it isn't as simple as it seems.
DK

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Kontos
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby Kontos » Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:50 pm

Excellent explanation, DK. I would have been perfectly happy with "Buck up, sissy pants." :)

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David Kuijt
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby David Kuijt » Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:54 pm

Kontos wrote:Excellent explanation, DK. I would have been perfectly happy with "Buck up, sissy pants." :)


Which is good, because that's what I would have said if I was talking to you! :P

The idea of providing some descriptions of the Thematic Categories is good, and I spent some hours yesterday creating draft text for each one. I suspect it will end up being quite useful. For example, some of the categories overlap in ways that are deliberate but not obvious. For example, there's Medieval Western Europe, Holy Roman Empire, Russian Princes, and Italy/Balkans -- those four essentially are geographic partitions of the same army lists that occur in Flower of Chivalry and Plate and HandGonne, which are chronological partitions of the same region. And there is Embattled Isle which is a geographic partition of a subset of Med.Western Europe (although with a broader chronological range), and significant overlap of the first four with other interesting Themes like Viking Seas and Dark Ages (which also overlap).

We should include some explanatory text in Meshwesh saying what the is the intended purpose of the Thematic Categories: to provide useful groups or sets of armies that will:
  • Support running tournaments or campaigns with strong historical basis
  • Provide an interesting framework for collecting armies
  • Help new players build an understanding of history
DK

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Bill Hupp
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby Bill Hupp » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:57 pm

DK,

I think your explanation as to historical uses of the themes is a perfect introduction to that part of Meshwesh. I almost always find myself going into the lists through one of the themes for almost any reason I am grabbing list information.

I have a couple of purchased FoG Byzantine and Islamic-era armies and am going through the process of making up as many Triumph! compliant armies as I can and then making up matched paris of historical enemies. Storing them together seems like a good idea to support historical games, with the idea that big battle games can be had too by grabbing 3 to 4 boxes of matched enemies.

To the extent people develop other useful lists, being they chronological, georaphical or something else, it would not be hard to eventually add the logic to support other useful lists in addition to histoircal themes.

Kind regards,

Bill
Bill Hupp
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I play lots of games and I like Triumph!

jdesmond
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby jdesmond » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:18 pm

Kontos wrote:Excellent explanation, DK. I would have been perfectly happy with "Buck up, sissy pants." :)


Y'know, Mr. Kontos, it ain't that I disagree with you. But we are Trying To Sell Stough To The Multitudes, and there's a lot of esoteric information that's folded into the rules and army lists - I mean, I studied Latin and Classical Greek in high school and college (ok, was many decades ago), and still had to look up Evagoras of Salamis.

Getting your potential customers completely mystified is not a great sales strategy.

My $0.02 worth of humble opinion here. Not seeking further argument.

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David Kuijt
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Re: Counsels of perfection ;-)

Postby David Kuijt » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:30 pm

jdesmond wrote:we are Trying To Sell Stough To The Multitudes, and there's a lot of esoteric information that's folded into the rules and army lists - I mean, I studied Latin and Classical Greek in high school and college (ok, was many decades ago), and still had to look up Evagoras of Salamis.


There are 650 army lists. There is nobody on this planet who doesn't have to look up at least one of them. Even Duncan Head (one of the most eminent scholars of army lists) probably doesn't know the Ivaylo's Uprising list, for example.
DK


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