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Author Topic: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)  (Read 804 times)

Offline Hobgoblin

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The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« on: May 21, 2019, 11:58:24 AM »


Has anyone else played this?

I bought the new edition the other day. After four games, I think it's a superb skirmish system - right up there with the best. And terrific for combat/miniature-focused RPGs too.

It's a rare game that can make combat between one or two characters a side genuinely intriguing, but I think TFT does it. You've got a huge number of options available for each turn - but you only have a very few stats to worry about.

The only drawback that I can see with it is that it depends on a hex grid; you could get rid of this, but then the balance of the game would become a little less precise. And it is beautifully balanced. I posted a few more thoughts on it here.

Offline Cat

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2019, 02:05:00 PM »
Yes, I've played this a lot way back when, lots of skirmish games starting with Melee in 1977, then Wizard, then a fair amount of RPG time when the full Fantasy Trip came together.  Bought in for the new Legacy Edition and am thrilled with the quality (and quantity!) of the components.

The game does benefit from playing on a hex grid, but that can also be translated to squares, or offset squares if desired.  I may wind up doing that since I have a lot of 3D modular dungeon pieces built up with square tiling.

SJG did up a brilliant demo table with hexes: https://boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/89717/demo-table-fantasy-trip

Offline marianas_gamer

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2019, 02:18:08 PM »
For many years our go to RPG. Very happy to have the new addition. Tremendous Kickstarter. I had the original pocket games -dating myself. I loved them and hope a new generation appreciates and has fun with this great gaming system!
LB
Got to kick at the darkness till it bleeds daylight.

Offline Hobby Services

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2019, 03:32:54 PM »
Most of my early gaming was with Metagaming products, so yeah, familiar.  It's pretty good, although the hexgrid is as poor a choice as always for dungeoncrawling and mapping buildings, and it's still vaguely annoying that increasing DEX helps loads on offense but only minimally on defense.  It (and GURPS, its linear descendent) would have done better with opposed die rolls, which was something people were saying way back in the Eighties.

Still, nice to see it back on the market.  Be even nicer to see Steve do something exciting and new (the Munchkin stuff may be the latter but it sure isn't exciting any more), but he's making bank on the nostalgia market these days. 

Offline Commander Carnage

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2019, 04:11:59 PM »
Great system for one off battles and rpging. My favorite rpg of all time. It does a great job of adding depth but not too much to make it unwieldy.
"Just don't roll a one!"

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2019, 04:30:33 PM »
It's pretty good, although the hexgrid is as poor a choice as always for dungeoncrawling and mapping buildings, and it's still vaguely annoying that increasing DEX helps loads on offense but only minimally on defense.  It (and GURPS, its linear descendent) would have done better with opposed die rolls, which was something people were saying way back in the Eighties.

It's definitely more of a well-designed game than a simulation. So far, I feel that the former outweighs the latter - there's loads of tactical depth.

On the hexes: I'm planning to design dungeons by just drawing over printed hex paper, as I do with square grids for Whitehack, etc, like this:



 I can't see the hexes being a particular problem with this, as I'll just make hex portions too small to put a miniature on the equivalent of the non-hex areas on a strict hexgrid. So my corridors will have straight walls, but will function identically to the jagged-walled ones that you'd make with hex tiles. Ditto for rooms. I can't see any problem with this - but perhaps I'm overlooking something.

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2019, 05:28:24 PM »
This is the kind of thing I mean. I'd allow players to place their miniatures on the partial hexes to represent a 'backs to the wall' situation. As the miniature can actually be placed over the wall area, I don't see a problem with this.

It allows some tactical options too. If a character is in the tiny area of exposed hex right in the corner, they can only be attacked from one hex, for example.

So the characters could go anywhere in the room. Narrow corridors between rooms would be in effect one hex wide, although the edges of the hex would be chopped off.

Offline Hobby Services

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2019, 07:40:54 PM »
Quote
I can't see any problem with this - but perhaps I'm overlooking something.

It's really ugly.  Aesthetics matter.  And ironically, there were similar criticisms made against some of SPI's games (including Sniper and Dragonquest) in the same time period TFT was in print - and in at least one case, in magazines published by Steve Jackson.

You can make hexes work for building and dungeon mapping mechanically, but you will never make it look entirely right unless your party is exploring an insect hive.  Which you could do - Interplay magazine had stats for more of the critters from Chitin: I and an adventure set in one of their nests.

Offline Commander Carnage

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2019, 08:01:36 PM »
Aesthetics are also based on the eye of the beholder. I prefer hexes for game play and they look perfectly fine when overlaid with a regular map. The overlay of the map has way more influence aesthetics than it being hexes, squares, rectangles, etc..

Offline Cat

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2019, 03:46:09 AM »
I too find the hexes work fine aesthetically.

Check out the neoprene cavern mats being offered in the current TFT Kickstarter.  Some about 1/3rds and more about 2/3rds down the main page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/warehouse23/the-fantasy-trip-decks-of-destiny?ref=user_menu

Offline Bloggard

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2019, 10:37:01 AM »
are you able to buy from a store in the UK  - or do you have to order from the States?

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2019, 11:04:36 AM »
It's really ugly.  Aesthetics matter. 

...

You can make hexes work for building and dungeon mapping mechanically, but you will never make it look entirely right unless your party is exploring an insect hive. 

I'd agree that the SJG dungeons that consist entirely of hex shapes look a bit odd. But there's no need to be guided by the hex pattern in designing the dungeon; you can just impose a light grid on it afterwards (or draw what you want over a grid).

I mean, in my examples above, the square grid is no less unnatural than the hex one. In both cases, I'd have been better to draw the map freehand and then trace it onto the grid paper, but the point is that the drawings show the layout and the grid governs movement in it.

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2019, 11:05:21 AM »
are you able to buy from a store in the UK  - or do you have to order from the States?

Yes - it's on Amazon. But it's £30 cheaper from Element Games.

Offline Hobgoblin

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2019, 11:07:40 AM »
One more point on the hexes: corridors that are (roughly) one hex wide don't need anything more than an approximate marking to govern movement, as there's no possibility of side or rear attacks. So it's really just open spaces, rooms and wide corridors that need proper hexes at all.

Offline ced1106

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Re: The Fantasy Trip (Melee and Wizard)
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2019, 12:41:56 PM »
Boardgamers don't seem to have problems with hexes, specifically with the ever-popular Gloomhaven game. You can definitely use its tiles for 28mm gaming, such as TFT and GURPS. The game itself comes with a hundred or so standees for monsters. It's under $100 on Amazon, and occasionally appears on The Drop (Massdrop) for $90. Send me a PM if you'd like a further $10 off referral code for new Drop accounts.

BGG: Gloomhaven : https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/174430/gloomhaven