Saturday, 9 October 2010
Having gotten back into playing BattleTech over the last couple of years, after a 16 year hiatus consisting of work etc, I'm not necessarily the worlds most experienced BattleTech player. The addition of new weapons and rules into the game over that 16 year period, has expanded BattleTech far beyond what was available in 1992 when I stopped playing. Though I had to chuckle a bit when I found out that the current line developers had rewritten the pulse lasers and targeting computers rules due to certain designs I wrote for them that appeared in the 3055 TRO.
I can't say I was completely innocent of pushing the boundaries, but there again I only designed what the rules allowed me to design, and IMNSHO the problems with a lack understanding the consequence of rules written by FASA is still a problem 25 years later, because largely it's the same crew writing stuff for the game.
Okay, they are brilliant, creative people, but none of them has the will, or desire to crunch the consequences of the rules as written, rather than the underlying intent of the rules. Heck, at some points I get this image in my head of the CGL crew as all rather left wing, vegetarian carrot crunching, social science majors, who hug plush toy cat girls when they go to bed at night. Seriously, what BattleTech has always needed is some hardcore "right wing" game design munchkins to break the game in every possible way they can. Someone who will go in, kick over the dustbins, take names and chew gum.
Having now ruined any chance of ever working for CGL let me tell you what I do. I only really play BattleTech with the introductory rules, using the Total Warfare rules as something one dips into to be able to use select pieces of hardware that are cool. Everything else is covered by house rules, with the aim being to keep the flow of the game going. To keep it cool. In my experience it seems to me that what new players want are games that they can play over a course of an evening, and that allow them to field a larger number of miniatures on the table. Something that BattleTech delivers rather poorly.
Disclaimer: All posts are condensed & abbreviated summaries of complex arguments posted for discussion on the internet, and not meant to be authoritative in any shape, or form on said subject, T&CA, E&OE & YMMV.