Our rules systems take a while to develop. If you are going to create a compelling and fun system you need:
a) A rules system that works AND is fun to play – and Alessio has given us one of these in KoW, I think it is a brilliant system. However, there will always be little kinks that need working out.
b) Enough armies to give people choice and variety – and they all need to be balanced! No small feat – and a monumental task.
c) The background and world for these rules to live in.
To develop our ‘finished’ rules we set ourselves a three time scale. In year one we would put out the basic rules out (essentially for free) to have a go to answer the first question – was this fun and did it work? I think the answer was yes.
We then set about adding more armies – a few at a time to see how they fitted into the system.
When we released the 56 page book we were trying to address two issues:
a) Any kinks or improvements we could make to the core rules (such as the nerve change (thank you, Richard). These need to be completed early so you can get on with balancing all the armies on a settled rules system.
b) Getting a critical mass of armies to allow this to be a competitive and fun gaming experience. That is what we are trying to do ahead of the ‘big book’ launch in the summer.
I know we don’t often post back on beta sites (such as our own and Beasts of War) but we just cannot engage with the dialogue – however, we read everything. With that in mind once we release the new Forum I will put up a dedicated ‘Rules feedback’ area for all your comments and suggestions – and I will get Alessio and I on to answer some of the more common points – but rest assured we will read everything that is written.
In my mind as the ‘Big Book’ (don’t worry, not THAT big!) launches the system comes out of Beta (and I apologies for using the word incorrectly) and we are saying – ok – here it is – a fun, balanced gaming system. Please take it and run with it. That’s the rules set for the next number of years, and we only change it if we have something interesting to say/do with the system – and not for financial reasons to drive up sales.
Here are a few things we will do to support the launch:
1) The updated core rules will be free to download from the website – and they will stay free, so anyone who wants to give it a try can do so with a few models and some free rules.
2) We will be launching a range of starter forces – so for a very reasonable amount of money you can buy a small force with rules and some dice – and the forces will be balanced to allow you to battle your friend.
3) You will be able to trade in your 56 page rule book for a discount off the new one – because we want to bring everyone with us, while bringing in more new blood to make Kings of War the gaming system of choice.
4) We also have a very interesting announcement coming soon, about how we will be engaging with the community going forward – and doing something no major gaming company has done before!!
So, is KoW dead – nope – it has not even come out of Beta yet. I believe 2012 is going to be a massive year for Mantic and for Kings of War. Thank you for the support (and over the past few months your patience) – and please keep taking the system down to the stores and clubs and getting people to switch over to a system with a very bright future.
Oh, and if you fancy having a massive impact on the rules and army lists, there’s our Kings of War Tournament in February too. We’ve only got a small number of tickets left, and this is the last week to get them at the special launch price.