Autor Wątek: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG  (Przeczytany 174357 razy)

kempy

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #560 dnia: 2023-02-19, 19:59 »

https://www.facebook.com/groups/160842683946823/posts/6265789550118742?comment_id=6266155523415478

Rob Hobart
Okay, I think enough time has gone by at this point -- seven and a half years since the sale -- that I can talk about this a bit. AEG's boss John Zinser always preferred to keep all such topics out of the public eye, but he's been talking a lot about other parts of AEG history in various interviews and hey, it ain't like I'll ever be working for him again.
The L5R CCG was in a gradually accelerating sales decline from roughly the end of Celestial Edition, due to a combination of bad/inconsistent/unbalanced card design (especially in Ivory Edition), storylines that failed to engage the player-base (although the individual fictions were well-written), and a series of bad brand management decisions such as letting the Imperial Assembly go dormant (for reasons I was never able to learn) and releasing an entire expansion direct-to-player, cutting out and alienating the Stronghold stores that had been strongly supported during Samurai and Celestial Edition.
By summer 2013, Zinser realized something was wrong and that L5R needed to be revitalized. (He had been concentrating on building up the company's boardgame side and more-or-less letting L5R run on auto-pilot.) At GenCon 2013 he made the initial decision for the Onyx "hell on earth" storyline, which thrilled me since I felt a big epic like that was exactly what was needed.
In 2014 Zinser was paying much more attention to L5R and started putting significantly more resources into it, including new hires in brand and marketing. There were already plans for a 5th Edition of the RPG, intended for 2015 to hit the 20th anniversary of L5R (I had been working on it since the start of 2013) but Z ended up delaying that, instead doing a modest 4th Edition line reprint at the end of 2014 and planning for a 5th Edition kickstarter in 2016. He had seen how well the Call of Cthulhu RPG kickstarter had gone and hoped we could match or beat it.
I was very optimistic about L5R's future at that time. Unfortunately, the new hires... did not work out.
In the first half of 2015, orders for L5R product -- including the RPG reprint and, much more importantly, the CCG's new 20 Festivals base set -- fell off a cliff. An investigation and emergency meeting revealed there had been a complete breakdown in basic product announcement/product promotion work -- the distributors had no idea these products existed and thought L5R was a dead game! The people involved were abruptly fired, although the reasons for the firing were kept in-house in accordance with Zinser's standard policy.
As we later learned, at that time Zinser began quietly planning to convert L5R to a Living Card Game because it had shrunk too much to support itself as a CCG. (This idea had been floated but not officially adopted at the emergency meeting -- I missed that meeting but read the minutes of it and later talked with several people who attended.) I'm not sure how many people at AEG knew about his intentions (I didn't), but the CCG release schedule was still officially unchanged going in to GenCon 2015 and the RPG kickstarter was still targeted to happen sometime in 2016.
As Zinser later explained, at GenCon 2015 he talked to FFG about how to convert the card game (since they were the only company that had done successful CCG-to-LCG conversions) and Steve Horvath basically said "well, the best way for you to do that would be to sell L5R to us."
(Which is why the 20th Anniversary Celebration event did not include the originally-announced discussions about upcoming CCG products -- I remember being confused by that. Zinser had put all that on hold at the very last second due to opening the buyout discussions with FFG. )
About six or seven weeks later the sale-agreement was finalized and Z informed each of us via Skype.
Ratling • Nonhuman • Tactician • Those Who Wait Tribe


kempy

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #561 dnia: 2023-02-19, 21:04 »
Uderz w stół...

Nawiązując do posta powyżej (z Discorda Oracle):

Kiyoteru, Oracle of the Void — Dziś o 19:54
They wanted the herald to move to an online format for the stories/etc.  However the idea for what was wanted was in someone's head and wasn't communicated well.... I didn't have spare time to accomplish what was wanted, so they pulled in outside programmers, but clearly never gave a solid statement of work.   I had communicated to the other group how to link in to the oracle for authentication/whatnot, but what came back was a completely separate beast that tried to replicate the oracle (in an extremely rudamentary way).   Finally I got an email pleading for me to get stuff fixed and going, so I ended up calling into work for a few days and integrating what they had made into working together with the oracle... but the entire process took way too long.    TLDR: lack of communication, and I suspect some of the stuff was tasked to the "new employees who didn't work out".

I jeszcze komentarz Dave Laderoute:

Rob's got it substantially right. I was actually the Brand Lead for AEG for L5R at the time of the sale, so there's a lot of additional nuance and subtelty that went on behind the scenes, but the bottom line was that L5R was underperforming for AEG. The choice was to do the things that would have been necessary to try to get it TO perform again--which were expensive and by no means certain of success--or just sell the IP to another company who wanted and had the means to push it back into a successful place. This had the added benefit of giving AEG additional resources to focus on other games, like (at the time), "Love Letter" and "Smash-Up", both of which were (and still are, although Z-Man now owns "Love Letter") major hits. Today, AEG produces an excellent line of diverse games. I have a whole AEG section in my game store, and product continues to flow through at a most satisfactory rate.
Selling L5R was a good decision by AEG--for itself, and for the IP.
Ratling • Nonhuman • Tactician • Those Who Wait Tribe


kempy

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #562 dnia: 2023-03-02, 00:28 »
https://www.facebook.com/groups/160842683946823/posts/6265789550118742/?comment_id=6300363169994713

John Zinser
Good Morning,
This is a topic that I have given answers on multiple times but am happy to quickly summarize why the sale happened and address some things being talked about here.
I have been very honest about the idea that AEG has always suffered from a cult of the new mentality inside of the company. New things are inherently more exciting to work on and our business plans were always built around the idea that having multiple successful games was the way for us to reach our goals.
The plan from day 1 as our initial message about L5R stated was to do a 2 year story for L5R and then do another game. The process of designing a new game from scratch in the way L5R, Doomtown, 7th Sea, Spycraft, Warlord and many others were birthed is hard. Harder than we thought it would be.
L5R’s initial launch happened during the first CCG crash. We had pre-orders for much more product than we had printed 4 months before it was released and watched those orders shrink every month from life changing, to pretty good, to decent, to bad, and then to holy crap scary.
As a result, when Imperial Edition shipped. We could not pay the full print bill, our investors decided to not fund Shadowlands and the entirety of AEG and our partner company in Seattle went on emergency lock down and we were doing everything we could every week to sell just enough product to stay in business. Long hours, lots of travel, demos in far away places, trunks full of demo decks etc.
In what was the hardest year of work that any of us have ever done we kept L5R alive when almost every other game died. Thanks in no small part to the players who fell in love with the game and embraced the grass roots idea of helping us reach as many people as possible with the game.
I mention this as a prelude because none of what followed with L5R would have been possible if we had not pulled rabbit after rabbit out of our hat during that first year to keep it alive.
Then we finally got Shadowlands out and L5R had become a cult hit. Its sales were better than they were during the crash but far from high enough to pay all of our meager bills or fund our aspirations for the company. Far less than what lesser games had been selling just a year prior. We continued our grass roots push through the end of the initial Clan War story and at some point during that process we agreed that we had not figured out the mechanics for Doomtown, L5R was just then being discovered by new players, and that our original idea of ending L5R would kill the company.
If the game had done well out the gate there is a reasonable chance that we would have stuck to the plan because we would have spent our time getting Doomtown in shape rather than doing demos for L5R but it is also reasonable to assume that the grass roots fandom hat built up around saving L5R might not have happened either.
A lot happened in the time between The Day of Thunder and the second sale of the game to Fantasy Flight but I will not go into that in detail.
I have admitted that there are times during L5R’s life that we could have and should have done a better job. If we had made the decision to focus on being the L5R company instead of the storyline CCG company things for L5R may have been different.
We made the decision to get into Board Games because that was the direction the game industry was going. As others have pointed out we had some success in board games with Smash-Up and Love Letter and L5R continued to do its thing.
There came a time when it was obvious to me that we were not doing a great job with L5R and we were also not doing a great job on our board games. We were a company split between two major things and the talents needed to be good at each of them was different and we could only afford to do one thing well.
We had a lot of amazing people working on the L5R property. Some of whom have chimed in on this thread. We mapped out a plan that would allow us to be the best L5R company we could be and to become the best board game company we could be. I decided there was no way for us to continue to try and do both as the plans for success for each business were nearly polar opposites and so I had to make the very tough decision to again sell L5R.
I am aware that at each inflection point for L5R, the decision to keep publishing L5R after the Day of Thunder, our the decision to then continue to try and do more CCG’s, or our decision to sell to Wizards of the Coast, and then our subsequent decision to sell to Fantasy Flight, we disappointed friends and fans, the very people who as I mentioned at the beginning of this post gave their heart and soul to L5R and felt betrayed by our decisions.
I know our decisions disappointed people like Rob Hobart, David Ladaroute and many others who gave so much to L5R and were such a big part of why it continued to grow into the great property that it is. I do believe in my heart that it is a property that will outlive its current state and be reborn in ways we cannot even imagine yet. There are people I know at Embracer Group who still believe that it is one of the best properties ever created in gaming. I agree.
To all of the fans and staff who were disappointed by these decisions I continue to apologize and ultimately hope they forgive us.
Do I miss it? Every day. With all of the movies out now talking about multiverses it is hard for me not to daydream about what Alderac looks like in universes where different decisions were made.
Z
Ratling • Nonhuman • Tactician • Those Who Wait Tribe


kempy

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #563 dnia: 2023-04-05, 09:48 »


Pinebox przedstawiał propozycję kontynuacji oryginalnej wersji po tym jak zamknęli LCG. Bezskutecznie.
Ratling • Nonhuman • Tactician • Those Who Wait Tribe


Togashi Sparrow

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #564 dnia: 2023-04-06, 08:40 »
Szkoda. Ostatnio przeglądałem karty do onyxa, byłoby grane

kempy

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Odp: L5R wykupione przez FFG! aka L5R LCG
« Odpowiedź #565 dnia: 2023-04-06, 09:41 »
Jakby ktoś chciał pograć w Onyxa (z RoJ) online w Sun and Moon to niech da znać. :)
Ratling • Nonhuman • Tactician • Those Who Wait Tribe