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Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 5:47:15 AM   
Missouri_Rebel


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Kind of odd, but I usually dedicate my first day or so reading the manual after recieving a new game. I own tons of table-top wargames that I often go back to read even if I don't play them. Therefore it is only natural that I will have a couple questions concerning the FoF manual.

1)Is there a printed manual included with the boxed version? Or pdf only?

2)Full color?

3)Does it include an index?

4)Anything else of interest?

Mo Reb





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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 6:02:29 AM   
AU Tiger


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5) Can we download it ahead of time?


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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 6:18:21 AM   
Missouri_Rebel


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hehe  Good luck.Not very likely, but I wish we could.

How about a screen or two featuring the manual? Is that possible?

mo reb

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 6:29:57 AM   
AU Tiger


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I don't even want a teaser. These AAR's are bad enough! Just bring on the game dammit! I am willing to take the initiative check on whether my computer will run it or not!


American by birth.
Southern by the grace of God!


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Post #: 4
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 6:30:22 AM   
Gil R.


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I can answer a bit. The manual is around 250 pages, so there is no hard copy, just a .pdf file. It will have color screenshots (for those of you who haven't yet had your fill of screenshots).

Mr. Z wrote it (which is like writing a book), so I'll let him answer further. Unfortunately, we cannot share any part of the manual here, but will answer questions about it.

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Post #: 5
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 6:34:33 AM   
AU Tiger


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250 pages, huh?

I guess I'll have to wait until the boss leaves early on a friday to print it...!


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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 8:27:58 AM   
Mr. Z


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It is full color.  There will not be an index, though the table of contents is rather detailed, and each relevant section usually includes important cross-references.  Usually the .pdf includes a bookmarked hierarchy (with linked headings, that is), though I can't myself say that it will for sure.

That's about it--we hope that it will be complete enough to answer nearly all player questions, outside of game strategies (though we do include a few tips here and there to help the player along.)

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 11:22:24 AM   
Jonathan Palfrey

 

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A pity about the lack of index, but a good index is a non-trivial piece of work in itself -- and anyone who has the PDF file can search the text for a word or phrase. That's not quite the same as a good index, but it'll serve.

250 pages sounds good. A game of this complexity deserves documentation on that scale, and I'm glad Western Civilization was willing to invest in it.

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 3:02:33 PM   
JudgeDredd


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This is terrible news. Increase the price of the game by a fiver and put a printed manual in it.

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 3:46:18 PM   
Mike Scholl

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd

This is terrible news. Increase the price of the game by a fiver and put a printed manual in it.



That would be my first choice too...., but given modern printing costs, full colour, and 250 pages of length; for your "fiver" you would recieve a booklet in type so tiny and pale as to be illegible and have to print it out anyway. Try taking your CD to your local "Copy Shop" and see if they can't run you off a nice bound copy you can actually use. It will cost more..., but if you think of it in terms of usage you should get your money's worth overall (always excluding that the forum "hype" may be "bull", and the game is "garbage". Sorry designers..., but I own a couple of these)

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 3:52:37 PM   
JudgeDredd


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I know....I'm hoping for the day when manuals make their way back into gaming life.

There is nowhere, locally for me, who can print a manual. The one guy I did find said the manual I was discussing at the time (can't remember which one) wasn't in the proper order for him to print in normal booklet fashion, and so wanted more money to reshift things.

Decided against it. Turned out I started reading my HoI2 manual and started playing that, dropping the game that didn't have the manual because I couldn't get into it because I didn't know how it worked because I hate reading PDF and cannot abide carrying unweildy A4 , unbound manuals between rooms when wanting a quiet read.

I always post the same drivel. Hate PDF, want printed. It'll never happen, but as long as there's a "manual" thread, I'll voice my opinion.

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Post #: 11
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 4:00:01 PM   
Mike Scholl

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd

I know....I'm hoping for the day when manuals make their way back into gaming life.

There is nowhere, locally for me, who can print a manual. The one guy I did find said the manual I was discussing at the time (can't remember which one) wasn't in the proper order for him to print in normal booklet fashion, and so wanted more money to reshift things.

Decided against it. Turned out I started reading my HoI2 manual and started playing that, dropping the game that didn't have the manual because I couldn't get into it because I didn't know how it worked because I hate reading PDF and cannot abide carrying unweildy A4 , unbound manuals between rooms when wanting a quiet read.

I always post the same drivel. Hate PDF, want printed. It'll never happen, but as long as there's a "manual" thread, I'll voice my opinion.



Know the feeling. Heaven is having a good, clear, readable manual in one hand; and the mouse in the other... Everything else is just settling for "second best" (and sometimes "third" or "fourth"). But that's the Economics of the game business.

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Post #: 12
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 4:47:36 PM   
Jonathan Palfrey

 

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A printed manual is nice to have, true. On the other hand:

1. I'll probably buy the game by download, anyway.

2. A PDF file can be updated to cover changes made post-release. Whether it will be updated is another matter, but at least it can be.

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Post #: 13
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 8:31:21 PM   
tgb

 

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As to printing and binding - I just print .pdf manuals at home, buy an inexpensive 3-ring binder, and use a 3-hole punch. No biggie.

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Post #: 14
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/13/2006 11:35:05 PM   
Grotius


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Aye, I'm going to buy the game via digital download anyway, so a printed manual is of no use to me. I'd prefer a PDF.

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Post #: 15
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 3:42:50 AM   
olperfessor


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Suppose we collectively write that manual on Wikipedia? I think that "Crusader Kings" and other games have that, in effect. Do any of you have any experience with Wikipedia as a substitute for a manual/cheats/FAQ/tips source? The idea sounds like a major improvement over scattered sites.

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Post #: 16
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 3:49:09 AM   
AU Tiger


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I imagine we could get some assistance from the guys in the WitP forum. They are WORLD CLASS TECHNO GEEKS!


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Post #: 17
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 4:07:26 AM   
Raverdave


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Ahhhhh.....a printed manual is the only way to go..............it's a bit uncomfortable sitting on the throne with the laptop.

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 4:13:19 AM   
kmb

 

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What about tutorials for the people that are on the little yellow bus,,,,,,,,,,,,,,like me

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 4:26:49 AM   
Gil R.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: kmb

What about tutorials for the people that are on the little yellow bus,,,,,,,,,,,,,,like me



Eric has put together a flash tutorial. It's not the same thing as a demo, but will help anyone when they first get the game.

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Post #: 20
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 6:26:14 PM   
Joram

 

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All I ask (besides a physical manual) is just that you make it very clear that the physical shipment, if one is offered, is nothing more than a small CD and case. I was quite peeved when I ordered CoG and all I got was a box and CD. If that's what I wanted I would have just burned the CD myself. And to head off the inevitable "it was mentioned", the omission of a manual on the content description of the order is not always obvious when the norm is for one to be included.

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Post #: 21
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 6:40:36 PM   
Gil R.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Joram

All I ask (besides a physical manual) is just that you make it very clear that the physical shipment, if one is offered, is nothing more than a small CD and case. I was quite peeved when I ordered CoG and all I got was a box and CD. If that's what I wanted I would have just burned the CD myself. And to head off the inevitable "it was mentioned", the omission of a manual on the content description of the order is not always obvious when the norm is for one to be included.


Since the Matrix people do read this forum, presumably they will take note of your suggestion.

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Post #: 22
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 8:08:03 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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To respond on the manual question, the norm with our titles has always been a PDF manual, but we will try to make the description highlight that no printed manual is included.

However, more importantly we are more than aware that a subset of our customers really want printed manuals. However, another subset wants PDF and the majority don't seem to care much either way. To cater to all these tastes, we've been working hard behind the scenes for well over a year to make these options happen, with the goal of giving the customer the choice. It's not an easy thing to do for the price we wanted and integrated into the "on demand" system we have developed behind the scenes, but it looks like it will happen soon. I'm not sure when exactly everything will be ready, but I'm sure that at some point in the early part of 2007, if you want a printed manual you'll be able to get one, just like you can ask for a printed CD + Box now.

Regards,

- Erik

< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 11/16/2006 8:14:04 PM >


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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 8:14:27 PM   
Hard Sarge


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gil R.

quote:

ORIGINAL: kmb

What about tutorials for the people that are on the little yellow bus,,,,,,,,,,,,,,like me



Eric has put together a flash tutorial. It's not the same thing as a demo, but will help anyone when they first get the game.


and to me at least, it is impressive, kind of neat too :)

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/16/2006 8:57:28 PM   
JudgeDredd


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins
...
However, more importantly we are more than aware that a subset of our customers really want printed manuals.

...but it looks like it will happen soon.

...but I'm sure that at some point in the early part of 2007, if you want a printed manual you'll be able to get one


That is FANTASTIC news

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/17/2006 1:16:35 AM   
Joram

 

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That is fantastic news, thanks Erik!

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/21/2006 8:13:31 PM   
Harvey Birdman


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Gil Is someone going to do a Ralegh tip guide for FoF? The Ralegh guide for CoG was useful reading when I first got CoG.

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Post #: 27
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/22/2006 12:31:59 AM   
Gil R.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Harvey Birdman

Gil Is someone going to do a Ralegh tip guide for FoF? The Ralegh guide for CoG was useful reading when I first got CoG.


Well, jchastain back in mid-beta days wrote up an economic guide, and might be inspired to update it. Beyond that, I don't know of anything offhand.

I've been thinking of the ongoing PBEM AAR as something similar -- a way for people to learn about the game and the sorts of decisions to consider. It's certainly not the same thing, but should serve an educational role in addition to be entertaining.

(By "educational," I mean, "Don't do what I do.")


< Message edited by Gil R. -- 11/22/2006 12:34:53 AM >

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RE: Let's talk manual - 11/22/2006 1:54:54 AM   
pompack


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

To respond on the manual question, the norm with our titles has always been a PDF manual, but we will try to make the description highlight that no printed manual is included.

However, more importantly we are more than aware that a subset of our customers really want printed manuals. However, another subset wants PDF and the majority don't seem to care much either way. To cater to all these tastes, we've been working hard behind the scenes for well over a year to make these options happen, with the goal of giving the customer the choice. It's not an easy thing to do for the price we wanted and integrated into the "on demand" system we have developed behind the scenes, but it looks like it will happen soon. I'm not sure when exactly everything will be ready, but I'm sure that at some point in the early part of 2007, if you want a printed manual you'll be able to get one, just like you can ask for a printed CD + Box now.

Regards,

- Erik


This discussion comes up on every game release , but to keep the usual pot boiling I am one of those people who insists on PDF.

I will spend a couple of hours reading the manual cover to cover before I play the game, but I will probably reference it or try to clarify some obscure point several hundred times the first year. This can be overly time consuming without a searchable file or a super paper index. Now the second year, I will be unlikely to even find the paper manual if I need to check something. I don't mind paying extra so the people who like it get a paper manual, but PLEASE don't leave out the PDF.

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 29
RE: Let's talk manual - 11/22/2006 4:06:53 AM   
Vyshka


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Scholl


quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd

I know....I'm hoping for the day when manuals make their way back into gaming life.

There is nowhere, locally for me, who can print a manual. The one guy I did find said the manual I was discussing at the time (can't remember which one) wasn't in the proper order for him to print in normal booklet fashion, and so wanted more money to reshift things.

Decided against it. Turned out I started reading my HoI2 manual and started playing that, dropping the game that didn't have the manual because I couldn't get into it because I didn't know how it worked because I hate reading PDF and cannot abide carrying unweildy A4 , unbound manuals between rooms when wanting a quiet read.

I always post the same drivel. Hate PDF, want printed. It'll never happen, but as long as there's a "manual" thread, I'll voice my opinion.



Know the feeling. Heaven is having a good, clear, readable manual in one hand; and the mouse in the other... Everything else is just settling for "second best" (and sometimes "third" or "fourth"). But that's the Economics of the game business.



Geesh, what is it with you guys? That is why you have the laptop sitting next to the computer. It is a shame that printed manuals have pretty much gone the way of the dodo, but I would rather have a 250 page pdf that I can take to Kinko's than the little 20 page pamphlet that ships with most games these days.

< Message edited by Vyshka -- 11/22/2006 4:11:56 AM >

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Post #: 30
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