From: London, Surrey, United Kingdom
So the question is:
Do I solicited some expert play testers (Modern Warfare, Hypothetical World War III set in 1990)?
Do I just run this big one through solo, and if I deem it's okay, just upload them?
Any and all feedback is welcomed.
We used to have a gold standard for this in the old TDG days:
1) A single run through to make sure nothing is broken. This would be a proper hotseat solo playtest but if you can't bear it perhaps use a PO vs PO run through and then check to make sure
a) all the events that are expected actually occur
b) no reinforcements get stuck. I'm playing a scenario right now where some units are set to arrive at hexes where their deployment is not allowed and so they never arrive, which is very upsetting
c) nothing else weird happens
For these purposes it doesn't matter if the PO is programmed or not, but if the PO is programmed it might also help you to understand if the combat is totally screwy. Of course if stuff breaks you're then advised to not only fix it but also repeat the test- until nothing breaks.
2) Once that's done you should do what we used to call a "designer playtest": you would take on another player and PBM it out yourself. Because you're actually playing, you can notice screwy things as they occur and add them to a list of fixes. Because you know the scenario pretty well, it's likely that this won't be super balanced as you should have an advantage.
3) Once you're happy that the scenario runs through without any major showstoppers, it's opened up to "blind playtest". This means you drop out and two new players (ideally but not always different from the participant in step 2) pick up the scenario and run through. We used to recommend both parties to keep a detailed AAR, noting how the scenario feels as well as anything that they think should be changed/improved. This then also serves as something of a promotional item for the scenario before its release, and we used to publish these with designer commentary
For the scenarios we actually published through TDG (from memory, this was only a handful: Curt's Blitzkrieg 50, Pelle's Wintergewitter, Erik's Weserubung 40, my Poland 39 and maybe one or two others), we typically completed several blind playtests before the group signed off on publishing the scenario. Each member only had one scenario in official submission at a time and you could only formally ask for playtesters for your official submission, so as I recall if you had a new version ready to go it was pretty easy to get testers- because we all knew one another everyone had a reasonable degree of respect for everyone's opinion. The only problem was that the longer scenarios would take quite a while to go through each iteration, hence most of the above examples are medium sized scenarios.
The whole process was pretty time consuming but at the end of the day every single scenario that came out of TDG was pretty much guaranteed to be an excellent finished product. The whole point of the group was to cut through the mass of rushed, untested scenarios that were circulating at the time and give players a mark of quality.
As this is an edit to an existing scenario you may feel like a lot of this is excessive.
< Message edited by golden delicious -- 11/25/2020 10:22:47 AM >
"What did you read at university?"
"War? Huh. What is it good for?"