Thursday, January 17, 2013

New Reviews!

Well I purchased 4 products yesterday.  XTRO Boondoggles, Objects Periphery, Objectives Clan, and the Revised Vehicle Annex.  I was sorely disappointed :(

First, XTRO Boondoggles.  I guess the name is appropriate!  This entire XTRO is full of crap, and by crap I mean you'll never use any of that crap on your table, heck, many of which are labeled as ILLEGAL, so stupid.  The artwork isn't very good either, well, the designs aren't, the art itself is SHUDA which we all know has done some great work.  Anyway, we have mechs with equipment that doesn't work, a Champion and Scorpion LAM (ok, the latter isn't horrible).  The Matar looks cool, obviously a predecessar to the Behemoth on the cover of TRO3057, and the design isn't too bad.  Well, wouldn't be too bad if it was functional.  We have hovercraft with secondary tracked motive systems (a 50 ton condor has 2.5 tons for track, and 2.5 for hover, so basically, tracked movement is no tonnage!).  There is a Neptune with hydrofoils, though it has to pay tonnage for them.  There are a few easy to forget support vehicles, the Banshee fighter from the Somerset Strikers.  They did have an autonomous jumpship scout which was a neat idea, and the "Enterprise" which is a decent warship with a whopping 648 fighters.  Right, the other plays will *kill* you if you bring this to the table.  Of course, it can't move, so its really just a space station and its art sucks ass.  They mention monitors, have a page on them, but no actual stats.

There are 2 new quirks.  One is "nonfunctional" and is negative 5.  So something doesn't work... hmmmm... lets make it life support for -5.  

And then there is illegal.  Seriously, ILLEGAL, as they do not follow the construction system.  Not sure how anybody can ever make a unit designer with crap like this implemented.  May as well just draw it up in excel and do it yourself, as software isn't designed to let you do everything.  Oh, and illegal stuff also fails and breaks all the time, go figure.

So onto the 2 object books.  If you've bought 1, you know what your getting.  Nothing new or innovative.  The clan book is ONLY the inner sphere clans.  If you love these books, add them to your collection, but since they are missing critical info to me like production numbers, they are kinda just fluff only and not very useful.

And onto the Vehicle Annex.  I was under the impression that there were going to be serious updates to the book and format of support vehicles.  Honestly, I can't even notice a difference skimming it.  I presume lots of the errors were fixed, as when I submitted errata long ago I was told they would be.  If you have the money, and love using stuff in this books, go for it, but it is far from a necessary purchase.  Not even any record sheetsh, sheesh.

Sure hope these products weren't great because they are spending all their time making IO great, but I'm not holding my breath!


  1. What did you expect when the description said "Experimental Tech Readout: Boondoggles samples some of the most infamous failures in military experiments made by the Inner Sphere and Clan powers throughout history." and "Statistics and (where useful) Record Sheets are included for 14 BattleMechs, vehicles, and aerospace units presented in this book, ready to use (if possible) in advanced BattleTech games."?

  2. Because they have made units that cannot be duplicated with their own design system.

    Because they could have done a hundred other things for "boondoggles", like 15 ton mechs moving 1/2, mechs with all rear weapons, all sorts of stupid designs that are *legal*.

    They opened the door for players completely ignoring the design system that they have 1 entire book for, and much of 2 others for, as long as they add the attribuet "illegal".

    Tell ya what, my AC/20 now fires 30/60/90 instead, but I have the "illegal" perk so why won't you let me play with it?

    A stupid product, in every single way. Not *all* the designs are illegal, but most are. Worst product in quite some time IMO.

  3. I think stupid more aptly applies to the person complaining they got what was advertised.

    1. Sure, I'm dumb because I bought a book that didn't say anything about illegal designs on the cover. Heck, even the intro says that the Potemkin warship and Banshee mech were also failures, and both of those are *legal* designs.

      I'm also stupid because for some reason, I think that when a game designer creates a rule set to build things, that they should abide by that rule set.

      Boondoggle - "a wasteful or impractical project or activity often involving graft"

      Sorry you took it so personally, but personal insults pretty much ruin your credibility.

  4. Again "ready to use (if possible)". Poor comprehension "pretty much ruin [SIC] your credibility".

  5. You should see the errata thread on Boondoggles already. Something like 50 errors in a 30-page book, of which half is record sheets. It's becoming clearer and clearer that they don't actually have an editor on staff anymore.

    I hope flooding the errata board with the latest fuck-ups will be enough to get some of them corrected, but honestly I expect to get banned at this point (given the way TPTB take criticism).