Just a point: Game speed (i.e. the slowness of the game) IS from pure EIA. Perhaps some don't remember, but it took well over a year to complete a grand campaign game, playing weekly for 6 hours (plus the diplomatic time spent outside of game time, which easily eclipsed actual at-the-table game time). This game isn't a whole lot slower than that, actually.
So, the tradeoff is not speed vs. EIA purity. The tradeoff is whether to change the game (again and/or more) in order to speed up a game that was known to be slow when started. Some people didn't like the length of EiA. They played Diplomacy or Machiavelli instead. I was drawn to this game (EIA) for reasons that are directly related to the speed of play! The game cannot be both as complex and as deep as this game is, and still be played in an evening. Star Fleet Battles or Wooden Ships and Iron Men could be played in an evening. But, they simulate only a tiny fraction of "life" that this game simulates.
When our group tried to play Diplomacy or Machiavelli (or Blue Max, for that matter), our natural bent towards complexity caused us to eventually ... invent a campaign version of the game! It would take longer. We knew that. It was a tradeoff worth making to have a deeper and richer gaming experience. Starfire: Same thing. Star Fleet Battles: Same thing. The list goes on and on. Heck, we even tried to make a campaign game out of Titan!
But THIS game provided all of that in one box. We didn't have to invent a game around a typical game to satisfy our lust for complex gaming. Here was a game that could be played for a year or two and still be fun!
Guys, I do NOT want speed over EIA. Even what has happened thus far to the game has made it "EiANW" rather than EIA. People here have frequently blamed EiH for the changes, but that's pure hogwash. Yes, EiH was used and yes it was different, but it was MORE complex and I'm guessing even SLOWER to play than pure EiA was!
No, the reason the game is changed from EiA MOSTLY is because of speed. Nearly every improvement done just because of speed (in any PBM or PBEM game, not just this one or ones on computers) speeds up the game, but nearly always does so with a sacrifice in the game itself. PBM and PBEM have always at least doubled playing time. In the days of paper mail, 10-to-1 is more accurate. Anybody who has played a PBEM game AND the original (on a board) knows this.
Is speed worth it? Perhaps. But, please stop arguing that the speed loss is caused because it isn't as close to original EiA as it could be. Almost 100% of the speed loss can be directly linked to the game being designed for email. And, much of what was EiA was sacrificed to make it a playable PBEM game.
Could it be "fixed" by having network capability? Absolutely not, at least not just IP play as has been suggested. Because, such a position completely ignores the real reason by PBM and PBEM campaign games came about: Because it's nearly impossible to find 7 players to all be in the same room at the same time, week in and week out, for 1-2 years.
The only way to solve all of the issues is to have it be an online game (as in, players log in to a server for all game functions). The server must be available over the Internet to all prospective players. And, multiple games at a time have to be hosted by this server, using IP as the transaction medium. If the game were served like this, THEN EiA would be a possibility (including all of the steps in each of the phases, etc.)
This game is EiA-like, NOT EiA. And, it is EiH-like, NOT EiH. It can only be legitimately be compared to a PBM or PBEM version of either of those.
< Message edited by Jimmer -- 12/3/2008 10:29:35 PM >
At LAST! The greatest campaign board game of all time is finally available for the PC. Can my old heart stand the strain?