Monday, November 02, 2009

A Change of Heart on DBM

I've had a bit of a change of heart regarding DBM vs FoG and DBMM. I've found a group that plays a lot of DBM, so I've been able to play the game a bit in a friendly environment. I have to say that I've had a lot of fun with it.

For the most part, all of the bad things that I had heard about the game are mostly untrue. Or, more correctly, they exist but are easy to counter. For example, there is a big complaint about geometric tricks and the fact that they don't work in DBMM is one of the big selling points. In a couple of games, I have yet to see anything that I couldn't easily counter. Also, the Zone of Death bit is something new to consider, but once it happens to you a couple of times, you get used to it. Basically, its turning out to be a classic case of people complaining about a new game working differently than an old game. In other words, its part of the learning experience...

So what does DBM have going for it? Well, its pretty simple especially if you already understand DBA. The concept of pips and movement and such is very similar. Also, pip conservation is one of the fundamental strategies of the game, much like that in DBM. I fell victim to that in our game last Friday. Anyways, troop interactions are much simpler than DBMM and FoG. Also, movement is much simpler than the other two systems. DBMM contains many more pip restrictions than DBM, which makes movement harder to process as well as having additional restrictions on the troop types. FoG has the concept of Complex Movement, which involves a table lookup (although, to be fair, I believe that it would be something easily memorized).

Anyways, I've been having a lot of fun with DBM. My biggest concern about the system remains, however. It is basically a "dead" system, since the authors/publisher no longer support it. Different groups are starting to use and propose different sets of house rules for use in tournaments. This can lead to nothing but trouble. Unless someone obtains the rights to the game, I think it will slowly fade away. According to some, its already happening...

As for my game play, I'm still going to try to learn FoG. Personally, I think that is the future, so I still find it worth learning. The biggest issue with FoG for me isn't the rules, but the figures required for the various armies. I finally decided to sit down and look throught the starter lists and figure out what I need to paint and/or buy. It turns out that I will be able to make most of the armies with a small amount of effort. Woo hoo! The biggest loser in all of this is DBMM. The odds of me getting a game with it are pretty small, so I feel that I'll get the least return on any time spent learning it. Its kind of too bad, but what can you do. I still have a lot of choices for gaming, which is always a good thing.

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