Having forgotten to upload the script to the last design episode, I decided to embrace it, this week, and just no bother with the script.  The result is more rambling and less structured and possibly less coherent.  But hopefully still interesting.

Let me know in the comments: stick to unscripted (and maybe do a video version as well) or go back to scripting and the hours-long preparation each episode demands... Can you tell my heart's not in it?

Apologies for the late posting.  I had a bit of a burn-out and needed to take a day off.  Back to normal service!
 
Back to the news, we look at
 
and, because why stop when you're on a roll,
 
 
And I take a look at why we are so often fooled into thinking that more "stuff" in a game makes it better, why that's probably not true and how players and designers can think differently about the integration of components with the gaming experience.
 
Incidentally, if you listen carefully, you'll hear my son's piano practice in the background.  I usually record while they're at school but, for some reason, this week my entire first recording was plagued with a mysterious background distortion, so I had to re-record it later.  There's also a door slam at some point.  I'm not sure, but it might have been the same son being told to stop playing the piano while his Dad is recording....

In the first in the new series, I start by talking about conceptual efficiencies and physical efficiencies - what are they, and why do large game companies like physical efficiencies so much?*

Link to the panel.

*Answer: because they make them more money.

So Osprey announced that 2021 would see the release of Stargrave, the much-anticipated sci-fi twist on Joe McCullough's smash-hit, Frostgrave.
 
What does that mean for smaller indy publishers and their sci-fi skirmish properties like, y'know, Horizon Wars: Zero Dark?
Knight Models released the cast of The Big Bang Theory in their Justice League Halloween costumes this week, to an extremely polarized response.  But what lies behind this decision, and why is the anger of a good portion of their players so great?
 
In this episode, I look at the history of Knight Models, their relationships with their licensors, and their (lack of) good customer service, quality management and business strategy and ask if there's any way back for them.
This week, I look at some emerging miniatures wargames:
 
HOF 
 
But wanting a bit of a break from the in-depth industry analysis we've been doing for the last few episodes, I thought I'd talk, instead, about the emotional bedrock of game design and, of course, how it applies to these four and to Precinct Omega.
 
Also, I take an unscheduled side quest to look at translation and localisation of games.

In August, Hasbro announced that their Pulse programme would run a "HasLabs" crowdfunding campaign for HeroQuest.  But HeroQuest has an iconic and troubled history, and feelings about this sort of thing tend to run high.

So for my listeners' benefit, I've dug through the history, the trademarks and the controversy to try to understand what's going on with HeroQuest, why it's happened how it has and what might, possibly, be coming next for the game.  WARNING: total speculation ahead!

Anyway, enjoy.

This week, the only new worth talking about is the release of the latest (fourth) edition of Infinity.  Actually, that's totally not true.  We could also talk about the HeroQuest announcement.  And the new Age of Exploration fantasy sailing game, Armada, from Mantic Games.  But those will just have to wait, because this episode is all about Infinity.
 
But you know me: I'm not just here to froth about a new product.  In fact, although I will talk briefly about what's changed, we'll not be looking at the detail of the new edition at all.  Rather, we'll be asking what it tells us about Corvus Belli's strategic plan for Infinity, what lessons they've learned from their competition and how this fits in to my ideas about the lifecycle of tabletop wargames.  Obviously, I'll also talk about how I've taken these lessons and applied them to my own work.
 
We are also joined by an exciting new... guest?  You'll see.  I think she's pretty cool and I hope we'll hear a lot more from her in the future.
With six pieces of news plucked from what was a huge range of options (it's like the industry has woken up from lockdown), I look at:
 
and
 
Then I unpack what each of these can teach us about the methods of brining a new game to the market.

This week I noted news from:

Wargames Atlantic 

Wyrd Games 

TTCombat 

Warlord Games 

And this inspired me to take a look at how wargames miniatures manufacturers have approached the question of materials technology over the last thirty years, how it's changed and why; and to look ahead and ask how the new push for desktop 3d printers is going to change the market for wargames miniatures.

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