Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > The Fantasy Trip

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-13-2018, 08:42 AM   #11
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shostak View Post
My excellent big brother bought OGRE through the mail after seeing an ad in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine. After having hours of fun for only a couple of bucks on that gamble, we bought the Melee and Wizard microgames. After a couple of years, we picked up the basic boxed set of D&D, the one with the red dragon on the cover, and got a dungeon-delving group going with neighborhood friends who were already seasoned TFT gladiators. But I never liked D&D's magic system, and I thought Melee had more believable and intuitive combat, armor, etc., so we switched back to TFT as soon as ITL, AM, and AW became available. Nobody seemed to mind (except one parent who had shelled out for every single hardcover D&D book for her kids). We played TFT (in homebrewed settings, not Cidri) until I bought GURPS 1st ed. sometime around '86, but by then we were all scattering off for college.
Ogre was my first wargame. I saw an ad in Starlog magazine that began with “The command post is well guarded. Tanks, armed hovercraft, missile cannon, infantrymen in powered armor - all with one mission: to defend that vital spot. And your job is to go in and destroy it. Alone. But when those defenders see you, they'll wish they were somewhere else. Because you're not a man. You're a thinking machine - the deadliest ever on any battlefield. You're the OGRE."

Incredibly evocative to someone who loved Star Trek, war movies and what little military sci-fi existed in the mid-1970. Mainly Starship Troopers and an odd little pulp novel called “Siege of Earth” by Matthew Faucette.

The next week, I had was in the local hobby store looking at model rockets when I blundered into the game section. There was Ogre, along with several issues of the Space Gamer magazine. I bought Ogre and two magazines.

I eventually bought every Microgame, primarily because they were cheap.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2018, 12:41 PM   #12
JLV
 
JLV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Far northern California
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Yeah Ty, I loved the microgames too. How could you go wrong? For $3 you were getting a fully playable game that you could play fairly quickly and multiple times. Even if it turned out to be a lousy game, you weren't out much, but most of them were pretty good and pretty much ALL of the early ones were superb. This compared with a $30 game that would require a ping pong table to set up and several months of your time to play...

Of course, nowadays, I guess they simply can't do it any more. Even a cheap microgame would probably cost $10 to $15, and I can tell you that those old "$30 games" now run you anywhere from $100 to $300 (and a couple of them, even $400).
JLV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2018, 05:11 PM   #13
CardDiceian
 
CardDiceian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Berkshire - UK
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

I'm not sure of the year - Probably 1981 - 1982. A new type of game shop opened in my home town Aldershot (UK). The shop has progressed since then to become a key UK games distributor (Esdevium Games). Up to that point there were either toy shops or model shops - and this place had stuff in I'd never seen before - Weird model figures by Citadel, and big boxed games that were beyond my budget, but they all looked so cool. Then there was a little rack of bagged games which I could afford - MicroGames. Melee looked like it woudl be a good choice, so that's the one I went for. Me and a couple of mates took to it straight away, so I went back the next week to get Wizard.
CardDiceian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2018, 08:17 PM   #14
Whome?
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

I have in my garage a complete set of TFT rules in mint condition. This includes all the Metagaming magazines and all the post SJ modules.

I bought the game because it was cheap and had great cover art. Easy to create characters and I must have ran Death Test a thousand times - one of the best game modules ever published.

Only RPG you could carry in your shirt pocket including miniatures. At the NTRPGCON an ex TSR employee says they played the game at night as their favorite game. He runs the game at NTRPGCON often. I have played in his games and that game runs very very well as is.

I say republish it as close to the original as possible.
Whome? is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-2018, 11:01 PM   #15
Jim Kane
Banned
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whome? View Post
I have in my garage a complete set of TFT rules in mint condition. This includes all the Metagaming magazines and all the post SJ modules.
Leader: "We will have Grabby, the thief, check for traps!; does he spot anything?" LOL!

Last edited by Jim Kane; 03-13-2018 at 11:02 PM. Reason: Typo
Jim Kane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-14-2018, 11:36 AM   #16
ak_aramis
 
ak_aramis's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Alsea, OR
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
I’d love to hear the legendary tales of the Old Ones here and how y’all got started with TFT.
Don't know if I meet the requisites described above...

I got started with TFT sophomore year in HS, 84-85... my buddy Dan had melee. We played the heck out of it, I bought melee and wizard, plus advanced melee and advanced wizard.

It would be over a year before I met a copy of In The Labyrinth...

... but I had Dragons of Underearth and the 1981 Fantasy Master's Codex. So, I was able to work around the lack of ITL.

Mostly, I used TFT to play solos.

My favorite run was a Reptilite Knight through Grail Quest, with his riding lizard.
ak_aramis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-14-2018, 12:08 PM   #17
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLV View Post
...Even a cheap microgame would probably cost $10 to $15, and I can tell you that those old "$30 games" now run you anywhere from $100 to $300 (and a couple of them, even $400).
I found an interesting price list from 1980. Excerpts in original 1980 dollars (and 2018 dollars in parentheses):

RPGS:
AD&D DM Guide $15 ($45)
AD&D PHB and MM $12 each ($36 each)
Runequest Rules $12 ($36)
Runequest Boxed $20 ($60)
Traveller boxed 3 book set $12 ($36)
Metagaming Grailquest $4 ($12)
TFT 3 books $16 ($48)

Gear:
TSR Polyhedral Dice Set - the crappy kind that eroded, with the d4 that could be used as caltrops - $3 ($9)
Gamescience opaque polyhedral dice $0.90 each – ($2.70 each)
Gamescience transparent polyhedral dice $1.50 each – ($4.50 each)
25mm Heritage man-sized miniatures $0.68 each ($2.04)

The dice prices explain why only using d6s was attractive. Two sets of 5 polyhedrals could cost $24 to $45 in 2018 dollars. That was 50-100% of the cost of TFT and 25-50% of the cost of AD&D.

Boardgames
AH Squad Leader (average sized boardgame) $15 ($45)
AH The Longest Day - monster game - $65 ($195)
SPI The Next War - smaller monster game - $34 ($102)
Yaquinto Armor $24 - large boardgame - $24 ($72)

Conclusions
Game books are MUCH cheaper today. The modern D&D books actually cost less than the AD&D books, but have twice as many pages and are in full color.

Dice are MUCH cheaper - $2.40 to $4.50 versus 20 cents apiece in the “pound of dice” sets on Amazon.

Boardgames are MORE expensive. The Next War had 3 mapsheets and 2400 counters and cost $102 in today’s dollars. Fall Blau by Compass Games has 3 mapsheets and 1000 counters and costs $140.

Squad Leader had ~700 counters and a 22x28 map for $45. A similar product from Lock-n-Load (~700 counters, but twice the map area) is $85.

Prices for boardgames vary tremendously today, of course, but it looks like modern board wargames cost an average of about 1.6 times their 1980 counterparts. The games are much more colorful; 4 color printing is ubiquitous. The rulebooks, player aids, maps and counters are often full color (and often horrid to look at, especially counters). These “improvements” seldom improve the game play much in my opinion. But I suspect the reason boardgames are more expensive is that they’re being produced in FAR smaller batches than in 1981.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-14-2018, 12:10 PM   #18
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by ak_aramis View Post
Don't know if I meet the requisites described above...

I got started with TFT sophomore year in HS, 84-85... my buddy Dan had melee. We played the heck out of it, I bought melee and wizard, plus advanced melee and advanced wizard.

It would be over a year before I met a copy of In The Labyrinth...
We're sorry but a minimum of 36 years' experience with TFT is necessary to qualify as an Old One...you newbie.

:D
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-14-2018, 04:50 PM   #19
JLV
 
JLV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Far northern California
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
I found an interesting price list from 1980. Excerpts in original 1980 dollars (and 2018 dollars in parentheses):

-snip-

Prices for boardgames vary tremendously today, of course, but it looks like modern board wargames cost an average of about 1.6 times their 1980 counterparts. The games are much more colorful; 4 color printing is ubiquitous. The rulebooks, player aids, maps and counters are often full color (and often horrid to look at, especially counters). These “improvements” seldom improve the game play much in my opinion. But I suspect the reason boardgames are more expensive is that they’re being produced in FAR smaller batches than in 1981.
Thanks for sharing that! As a somehwat apples to apples comparison, the original SPI War in the Pacific cost about $60 (or about $180 in 2018 dollars) as I recall -- seven mapsheets plus 2000 counters. The "second edition" version, published by Decision Games a few years back cost over $350 dollars. Still seven strategic map sheets (plus about 2 dozen smaller mapsheets for various islands), but counter count was up to roughly 4000, I think. However the rules were "simplified" to remove a lot of the logistics in the original version (by basically using Pacific War's combat system for ground operations). Plus they did an expansion set for something like $50 more bucks that added many more island maps and some more counters. (I actually think that the second edition is not as good as the first one, despite being brought to you with generally higher physical production values.) Now, in my opinion, DG has a nasty tendency to overprice their games, but even so...

(I just did a price check -- they are selling the 2nd edition + expansion pack, for $450 now, which would be $150 in 1980 dollars). Can you imagine trying to come up with $150 for such a game back in the 1970's-'80's? I can't. That would have been like my parents' monthly mortgage payment back then...)
JLV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-14-2018, 05:35 PM   #20
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: The Obligatory “How Did You Get Started in TFT” Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLV View Post
Thanks for sharing that! As a somehwat apples to apples comparison, the original SPI War in the Pacific cost about $60 (or about $180 in 2018 dollars) as I recall -- seven mapsheets plus 2000 counters. The "second edition" version, published by Decision Games a few years back cost over $350 dollars. Still seven strategic map sheets (plus about 2 dozen smaller mapsheets for various islands), but counter count was up to roughly 4000, I think. However the rules were "simplified" to remove a lot of the logistics in the original version (by basically using Pacific War's combat system for ground operations). Plus they did an expansion set for something like $50 more bucks that added many more island maps and some more counters. (I actually think that the second edition is not as good as the first one, despite being brought to you with generally higher physical production values.) Now, in my opinion, DG has a nasty tendency to overprice their games, but even so...

(I just did a price check -- they are selling the 2nd edition + expansion pack, for $450 now, which would be $150 in 1980 dollars). Can you imagine trying to come up with $150 for such a game back in the 1970's-'80's? I can't. That would have been like my parents' monthly mortgage payment back then...)
Yikes. That’s more than twice as much as The Longest Day...the most expensive wargame AH produced. Maybe excepting The Pacific War - wasn’t that like $80+ in the mid 80s? My biggest complaint is that the counters in so many modern games are garish - busy and distracting. Just because you can have a zillion colors doesn’t mean you should use them.

Last edited by tbeard1999; 03-14-2018 at 05:53 PM.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:45 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.