Is WotC Gamma World dead?

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Angel Tarragon » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:12 am

Havard wrote:In any case I think Alternity is a bad example here. Alternity probably would have been much more successful had not 3E been released so soon thereafter, calling for the next modern system to be d20 based (D20 Modern) instead of continuing Alternity. So this had more to do with TSR being bought by WotC than it had to do with Gamma World.
Actually the Alternity product line was published under the WotC branding. I think the success of D&D 3.0 was what made some gamers clamor for a modern d20 rules system.

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Angel Tarragon » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:21 am

Tom Kalbfus wrote:....what makes RPGs so different that they have to have whole game systems constantly go in and out of fashion?
It isn't so much as going in and out of fashion as it is about product, company brand and advertisement. Obscure companies may become a success by good productions values, word of mouth about the product and interest, and the opposite applies as well. Games that become a success are constant being house-ruled by Games Masters that improve the performance of play usually gets submitted to the companies publishing the game and many like minded submissions eventually get incorporated to the game as official errata. All this errata eventually goes towards making a new version of the game, hopefully streamlining it and making it easier that the last version to play.

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Dragonhelm » Sat Dec 03, 2011 7:42 am

Tom Kalbfus wrote:I think a game system should live or die based on its own merits rather than one what's coming down the pike next. I suppose the WotC folks didn't want to compete with themselves by selling two very different game systems, but there was nothing really wrong with the Alternity Game system, I just dislike the fact that the product cycle had grown so short that I was suckered into buying all those products, and I even designed a few spaceships for that game, only to have the game system go out of print. I was used to AD&D which was produced for about 2 decades, and my expectation was that a new game system would last equally long so we can learn the ins and outs of it, rather than the company becoming a Core Products mill. Why is it they don't constantly reinvent the game of Monopoly? It is still the same game system as it was in the 1930s with the same 1930s prices after all, what makes RPGs so different that they have to have whole game systems constantly go in and out of fashion?
I wanted to address a few points here.

AD&D had two different editions in those 10 years. Now, editions seem to be coming a little quicker these days, but that may be largely due to the changing game market. The RPG market now is not the same as it was in the 80s or 90s.

While classic Monopoly hasn't changed all that much, there have been some changes over the years (including dollar amounts). Monopoly Here and Now has a modern day makeover (including dollar amounts), and then there's U-Build Monopoly. The game of Life has been updated to fit modern sensibilities as well.

History of the board game Monopoly

As another example, take the Ford Mustang. Many cars throughout the years have had that name, but the model changes every so many years. While the new one may be all modern, sometimes we may long for an older model.

Tom, I get that you feel hurt or betrayed. I wish I had a better answer for you other than to say that this is business. What I can say, though, is that you should support the game systems and settings you love, whether the company supports them or not. I think you'll find that you aren't alone on your opinions, as many folks out there will share them.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Tom Kalbfus » Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:52 pm

Twin Agate Dragons wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:....what makes RPGs so different that they have to have whole game systems constantly go in and out of fashion?
It isn't so much as going in and out of fashion as it is about product, company brand and advertisement. Obscure companies may become a success by good productions values, word of mouth about the product and interest, and the opposite applies as well. Games that become a success are constant being house-ruled by Games Masters that improve the performance of play usually gets submitted to the companies publishing the game and many like minded submissions eventually get incorporated to the game as official errata. All this errata eventually goes towards making a new version of the game, hopefully streamlining it and making it easier that the last version to play.
The thing about House Rules is that they are usually additions and not subtractions, when you throw on too many additions the game often becomes too complicated to play, at least for new people getting into the game. Additions are usually added to make the game feel more realistic, for instance there was once a table published in Dragon Magazine that listed all sorts of different types of critical hits, including results such as severing a limb or decapitation, and there was a table for critical misses, where one possible result was Hit self. Sometimes it was amusing when a character makes an attack and ends up hitting himself instead. One limitation of the critical hits and misses table is that it makes assumptions about the attack and the opponent being both humanoid, one has to make creative interpretations if one of the characters is nonhumanoid. I believe critical misses have been dropped.

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Bouv » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:26 pm

Tom Kalbfus wrote:
Havard wrote:
Dragonhelm wrote:
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Maybe they should start calling the Game OmegaWorld, because whenever this setting is published, it seems that the Gaming system is done, they leave all the people who bought it holding the bag as they move onto another system, they did it with Alternity after all, when you start seeing a GammaWorld version of it, that gaming system's days are numbered.
That's kind of the nature of the beast, though. Almost every game system/setting is like that. Gamma World just had a shorter run than most.

That being said, there are many people who still play games no longer being supported, whether it be WEG's d6 Star Wars, Star Frontiers, or AD&D. The beauty of this particular beast is that gamers can generate content and continue to have fun for years to come.
In any case I think Alternity is a bad example here. Alternity probably would have been much more successful had not 3E been released so soon thereafter, calling for the next modern system to be d20 based (D20 Modern) instead of continuing Alternity. So this had more to do with TSR being bought by WotC than it had to do with Gamma World.

-Havard
I think a game system should live or die based on its own merits rather than one what's coming down the pike next. I suppose the WotC folks didn't want to compete with themselves by selling two very different game systems, but there was nothing really wrong with the Alternity Game system, I just dislike the fact that the product cycle had grown so short that I was suckered into buying all those products, and I even designed a few spaceships for that game, only to have the game system go out of print. I was used to AD&D which was produced for about 2 decades, and my expectation was that a new game system would last equally long so we can learn the ins and outs of it, rather than the company becoming a Core Products mill. Why is it they don't constantly reinvent the game of Monopoly? It is still the same game system as it was in the 1930s with the same 1930s prices after all, what makes RPGs so different that they have to have whole game systems constantly go in and out of fashion?
I think it has to do with the nature of the game industry, especially early on. Developers made the rules but after publication discovered some errors, flaws or what have you in the systems and so had to keep updating them. However, a company like WotC should have enough staff and support in place to be able to play test a lot of their new editions.

And not wanting to have different systems out there is understandable. The RPG'ing community is quite small so you don't want to isolate any of them from buying your product because it's a new system, new rules, that will drive people either away from the system or away from the other system.

Something like Monopoly or Scrabble - you have a larger customer base so that you can put out all sorts of different boardgames and not hurt your bottom line or drive people away.

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Big Mac » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:52 am

Tom Kalbfus wrote:I think a game system should live or die based on its own merits rather than one what's coming down the pike next. I suppose the WotC folks didn't want to compete with themselves by selling two very different game systems, but there was nothing really wrong with the Alternity Game system, I just dislike the fact that the product cycle had grown so short that I was suckered into buying all those products, and I even designed a few spaceships for that game, only to have the game system go out of print. I was used to AD&D which was produced for about 2 decades, and my expectation was that a new game system would last equally long so we can learn the ins and outs of it, rather than the company becoming a Core Products mill.
WotC have sold this as a one-shot thing.

And game systems don't die - they just go out of print. Out of print stuff is no worse than in print stuff. The only problem with it being out of print, is you might have problems obtaining other copies and that might lower the player base.
Tom Kalbfus wrote:Why is it they don't constantly reinvent the game of Monopoly? It is still the same game system as it was in the 1930s with the same 1930s prices after all, what makes RPGs so different that they have to have whole game systems constantly go in and out of fashion?
Actually, they do constantly reinvent the game of Monopoly, so you have a bad example there. Hasbro bring out a ton of customised versions (with local streets) and have even done unusual things like Star Wars Monopoly. There might even be more editions of Monopoly than there have been of Gamma World.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Angel Tarragon » Sun Dec 11, 2011 3:05 am

Big Mac wrote:There might even be more editions of Monopoly than there have been of Gamma World.
Considering 1 for each US sate, definitely more editions than GW.

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by BlackBat242 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 6:34 am

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Customizable & "quick-play" versions:
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Computer versions:
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Round play board:
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There have been versions that are now out-of-print:
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Also a "Klingon edition" and one including all of the Star Trek shows.

NFL Monopoly, etc.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Ashtagon » Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:33 am

Monopoly is a bad example. Although the names change across the various versions, the rules are always identical.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by shesheyan » Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:44 pm

I bought the first box of the new edition, played one game and sold it to someone else a few months later. The game had no substance. The booster pack gimmick didn't take off... Gamma World is just a portfolio asset for WoTC, much like Ravenloft and other titles they bought from TSR. They capitalized on nostalgia for sales. Too bad because Gamma World could have been the successor of Modern d20. A new iteration with a gritty post-apocalyptic background...Just wait about three years and they will publish the « D&D Gamma World 5E box » !!!!!
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Dragonhelm » Wed Mar 07, 2012 2:34 am

shesheyan wrote:I bought the first box of the new edition, played one game and sold it to someone else a few months later. The game had no substance.
I quite liked it. If it had a weak area, I think that would be more in terms of providing more setting material.
The booster pack gimmick didn't take off...
I don't follow. Can you elaborate?
They capitalized on nostalgia for sales.
Egad. Marketing! ;)
Too bad because Gamma World could have been the successor of Modern d20. A new iteration with a gritty post-apocalyptic background...
I thought that GW would make for a great basis for a D&D Modern game. I'm actually disappointed that this never came about. What attracted me this time around was that it was based on D&D.

As for GW, the fan base seems split on what they want. Some want gonzo, others want gritty. Personally, I enjoyed the gonzo side of things. There are plenty of serious settings out there. Why not have one that is a little wacky?

Unfortunately, I don't think this is a case where one setting can appeal to both playstyles.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by dulsi » Wed Mar 07, 2012 1:53 pm

I was finally able to run an adventure with Gamma World. I allowed all the boxed sets. I'm rather disappointed with the expansions. One player rolled Vampiric from Legion of Gold. Another rolled Simian from Famine in Far-Go after his first character got killed. Both characters were clearly more effective than the original box set characters. One person wanted to make a Demon/Magnetic after he died. After looking at the rules he decided he didn't want to do that because of how much better that combination is compared to others. My wife still wants me to run a campaign but I'm not sure I'm found enough of the rules. I keep hoping that Metamorphis Alpha for 4E D&D is better.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by shesheyan » Wed Mar 07, 2012 3:47 pm

Dragonhelm wrote:
The booster pack gimmick didn't take off...
I don't follow. Can you elaborate?
Booster packs of random mutations and equipement were available in store when the game came out.
That turned off alote of people - including myself.

Its easy to make wacky campaigns with serious rules. The opposite is far more difficult.
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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by Fuzzymustard » Mon Jul 27, 2015 8:10 pm

Hard to say. I noticed the books for the last edition vanished. Pulled or sales? Either way i have trouble finding even the newest card based edition.

I also dont see the events supported at the CONs for example GENCON gots squat for WTC GW games. Sad, its a lovely world.

FM ;(

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Re: Is WotC Gamma World dead?

Post by gallowglacht » Mon Jul 27, 2015 9:30 pm

Fuzzymustard wrote:Hard to say. I noticed the books for the last edition vanished. Pulled or sales? Either way i have trouble finding even the newest card based edition.

I also dont see the events supported at the CONs for example GENCON gots squat for WTC GW games. Sad, its a lovely world.

FM ;(
Amazon still have a couple of copies if you were looking for it.

You won't see any support for it but it is pretty much self contained and complete.

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