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  #1  
Old November 16th, 2022, 11:07 PM
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AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

What went wrong, and should be fixed next time? What went right, and should be repeated next time? Record your thoughts here.

Last edited by Heirloom; November 16th, 2022 at 11:20 PM. Reason: clarification
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  #2  
Old November 16th, 2022, 11:23 PM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

I’ll start with the biggies…
WRONG: HasLab
RIGHT: design team
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  #3  
Old November 16th, 2022, 11:25 PM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Wrong: Nearly everything.
Right: Classic 'Scape units--but locked behind ridiculous backing goals.
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  #4  
Old November 17th, 2022, 12:10 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

I am very glad that this was attempted.
I am sad that it was doomed to fail.

I strongly believe it could have succeeded - at another company.
Even more, I strongly believe Heroscape is a viable ever-living game system, that doesn't need crowdfunding.
I believe the "problem" is basically... Hasbro.

I would like to sincerely and with utmost appreciation thank the people who put so much into this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knox View Post
Thank you so much @Dad_Scaper @encarmine @Craig Van Ness @Scytale @skyknight @dok @superfrog @Xorlof
I believe the units and the designs are spectacular. And the sculpts and art are superb! Subsequent exhaustive analysis and playtesting will bear this out I'm sure!

Repeating myself from the other thread:

Craig Van Ness = 5 stars
War Council = 5 stars
Avalon Hill = 5 stars for effort damn they did some aweomeness
(doesn't matter) planning = 1 stars
(doesn't matter) presentation = 2 stars
(doesn't matter) marketing = 1 star
Hasbro = 1 star

Since Hasbro is never gonna give this up, never gonna let this go, I think... well, who cares. This community is it, basically. Same as before.

So, I think it would be better that this never happened...

... UNLESS they sell it to another company. Which they won't.
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  #5  
Old November 17th, 2022, 12:19 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Why did they go through all the effort to recreate the whole setting when they could have gone back to the units that were already in development before DnD took over?
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  #6  
Old November 17th, 2022, 12:21 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

For posterity, copying from the other official news thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitar View Post
The Haslab campaign has ended, with 4,353 backers out of the required 8,000. The official response to this is here:

https://hasbropulse.com/blogs/avalon...heroscape-fans
Quote:
To all the fans of HeroScape,

As of the deadline for the HeroScape: Age of Annihilation, Vanguard Edition HasLab project, we are short of the goal needed to start production on this wonderful game. No doubt you are disappointed in the results. We are too. The anticipation for this project among the Avalon Hill staff was great – we spent months preparing for the campaign, and once launched we worked hard to gain the support of every single backer who pledged.

And it didn’t go without notice that you did the same. So many of you worked hard to help spread the word of our campaign. You offered us your honest feedback, let us know where we may have missed the mark in some places and where we were succeeding. Your involvement in this project was incredible, and we feel lucky to have found such an amazing community of folks who all share the love of this unique and thrilling skirmish battle game. The passion we felt from you was truly an inspiration that kept pushing us to improve the campaign as best we could. So from the bottom of our hearts, thank you. Thank you so much for sharing that passion with us.

We also want to extend a huge thank you to the HeroScapers who came aboard to help us create this project. Your work on this game was absolutely unbelievable, and we know how hard it was for you to keep your involvement a secret in those early days! Sincerely, this wouldn’t have been the same without you and we appreciate everything you brought to the table.

So, with that being said, no doubt the big question on everyone’s mind is…

What’s next for HeroScape?

Our unfortunate answer is… nothing. As we said during the campaign if this project doesn’t meet its goal, we won’t be able to produce Age of Annihilation. That has not changed. HeroScape as a project will be shelved, and there are no current plans to attempt a resurrection at this time. The Avalon Hill team will refocus our efforts on the exciting games we currently have coming soon, such as the next HeroQuest Game System expansion, Mage of the Mirror, or the upcoming Yawning Portal D&D strategy board game.

What we did take away from this campaign was a great deal of learning. And for that, we have you to thank. We hope you remain as passionate, as devoted, and as vocal with all our future endeavors so that we create to the best of our abilities the games you love.
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  #7  
Old November 17th, 2022, 12:22 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Zero issues with the units or factions myself.
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  #8  
Old November 17th, 2022, 12:54 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

I liked the content, having so much new stuff all at once wasn't the best move, I think they should have trickled that stuff in through each release. I don't have a problem with the units themselves though.

For example if we stick with 5 factions, I think they could have stuck with the bugs, pirates, and dryan, then included a fleshed out dwarf faction and a fleshed out omnicron faction. Save the ironclad and clockwork for a future release. This way, old players have something they recognize through the dwarves and omnicrons plus the new factions.

I don't think making so much cotent for a single release was good though. Making a 2 million dollar goal was unnecessary, i think a smaller goal and set should have been sought so that we can achieve it and get something out the door, then focus on expanding content later. A 1 million dollar goal wouldn't have required as many people up front to back it, and if it reaches 2 million then great.

If we stick to 2 million dollars, then the tiers and addons as many have described would have been smart. It would have allowed a greater quantity of individuals to get involved, and allowed the whales to purchase even more content since they can avoid duplicates of stuff they don't want

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Old November 17th, 2022, 01:11 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hogg View Post
Why did they go through all the effort to recreate the whole setting when they could have gone back to the units that were already in development before DnD took over?
Most likely due to legal reasons, though the confirmed reasons may always remain opaque to the majority of us (for other legal reasons).

More critically: Why was so much time and focus placed on deep-diving into expanding the lore, especially if the product wasn't officially greenlit for production?

Yes, in an IP-laden entertainment market, lore is important. However, I really believe the cart was placed before the horse with this. If they wanted to expand the lore, a safer option might have been to continue closer to where the lore left off (there should be enough there to work with to satisfy the existing players, and touch on previous details to entice the curiosity of new players). Once the stage is set and the revival is officially slated for production, THEN go crazy with the lore.

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  #10  
Old November 17th, 2022, 01:30 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Quote:
Originally Posted by 'Scaper94 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hogg View Post
Why did they go through all the effort to recreate the whole setting when they could have gone back to the units that were already in development before DnD took over?
Most likely due to legal reasons, though the confirmed reasons may always remain opaque to the majority of us (for other legal reasons).

More critically: Why was so much time and focus placed on deep-diving into expanding the lore, especially if the product wasn't officially greenlit for production?

Yes, in an IP-laden entertainment market, lore is important. However, I really believe the cart was placed before the horse with this. If they wanted to expand the lore, a safer option might have been to continue closer to where the lore left off (there should be enough there to work with to satisfy the existing players, and touch on previous details to entice the curiosity of new players). Once the stage is set and the revival is officially slated for production, THEN go crazy with the lore.



Yeah, the lore focus was strange to me. The trailer they released that was narrated by Thormmun was well-produced and looked nice, but not as valuable as a well-produced gameplay/terrain trailer that displayed the contents of the set.
Personally, I'm not interested in the lore. I wouldn't have read any books/comics/ etc were they to have been released; I'm here for the game
If they want to make that content for the section of the player base who want to read lore then that's fine but it should have come later once the actual purpose of Heroscape is established.

Me when I roll zero shields with Deathwalker 9000:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6-teNJoMrX4
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  #11  
Old November 17th, 2022, 01:57 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

Quote:
Originally Posted by Master Roshi View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by 'Scaper94 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hogg View Post
Why did they go through all the effort to recreate the whole setting when they could have gone back to the units that were already in development before DnD took over?
Most likely due to legal reasons, though the confirmed reasons may always remain opaque to the majority of us (for other legal reasons).

More critically: Why was so much time and focus placed on deep-diving into expanding the lore, especially if the product wasn't officially greenlit for production?

Yes, in an IP-laden entertainment market, lore is important. However, I really believe the cart was placed before the horse with this. If they wanted to expand the lore, a safer option might have been to continue closer to where the lore left off (there should be enough there to work with to satisfy the existing players, and touch on previous details to entice the curiosity of new players). Once the stage is set and the revival is officially slated for production, THEN go crazy with the lore.



Yeah, the lore focus was strange to me. The trailer they released that was narrated by Thormmun was well-produced and looked nice, but not as valuable as a well-produced gameplay/terrain trailer that displayed the contents of the set.
Personally, I'm not interested in the lore. I wouldn't have read any books/comics/ etc were they to have been released; I'm here for the game
If they want to make that content for the section of the player base who want to read lore then that's fine but it should have come later once the actual purpose of Heroscape is established.
To add, cynically: instead of the fanbase looking to HeroQuest as an "example" for the AoA haslab, the marketing team should have looked at the original HS commercial as an example for what elements of the game to highlight. A bit snarky, but true nonetheless.

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  #12  
Old November 17th, 2022, 05:35 AM
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Re: AoA:Vanguard Campaign Postmortem

The good:
The unit abilities and the creativity that went into them was excellent. The Pirates, heroes who could place glyphs, order marker shenanigans , and units with two life to name a few.

The models looked great from what we could see of them, once the sting of them being understandably unpainted passed.

Making flying a keyword, Definetley the right move.

The war council did a great job engaging the community throughout the campaign.

The AOA master set itself was an exciting package- The idea of playing against people just using that would have a very nostalgic feel but with all new scapes. It was also a very meaty offering so it would have given us a lot to play around with.

The nitpicks:
The new symbols for movement etc. are well intentioned, but personally not my preference. While I like the idea of keywords as mentioned with flying, the lack of uniformity here with old cards, and lack of intuitiveness was a bummer.

No Valkrill in favor of new generals. While it didn't diminish my excitement for the project, I found it weird that new factions were being introduced when we have Valkrill who is a general only fleshed out if you play with customs. I respect that the creatives might have had a vision, but between the existing generals I feel most bases are covered. Valkrill returning and one new general could work if they really wanted a new general, but to not have him at all felt silly.

The ugly:
The campaign and its advertising was abominable. If not for those passionate about it posting here, barely anyone would have known about it.This paired with the weird rollout of it, with a decent pre campaign hype, and then more or less radio silence for half the campaign made zero sense. There should have been a strong showing of cards from the onset, and then a drip feed of them. It's hard to expect people to cough up a lot of money when they don't even know what they're buying, so the fact that the card designs weren't even finalized by launch was ridiculous. I respect that they were polling the community on the preferred design, but if they were going that route it should have been a pre campaign launch poll to hype people up and spread awareness.

I would say the goal of two million was too high, and hen considering the many failures of the campaign it was way too high considering the whopping $250 asking price as the only way to buy in. While that is certainly worth it, that is a hard sell to new players and a smaller master set, or even the option to just buy figures or terrain would be essential to hit such a lofty goal.

The already giant goal having an even loftier stretch goal to even get the classic characters was just a slap in the face.
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