Well, sadly I have issues with the new mapboard. Surprisingly, the map is not the creative work of Fantasy Flight Games, but instead of 'Edge Studios', and it shows. It reminds me of the graphic design akin to the 3rd edition of Axis & Allies (pre-painted stains, crease marks and miscellaneous objects - bullets, radar screen, compass - really, a compass in the age of laser defenses and hovering tanks?). Gone are the textured-looking mountain spaces, to be replaced by a simple brown screen gradient. Also, spaces have no color distinction from one area to another, unlike the original. So much easier to distinguish different zones when colored slightly differently from neighboring zones.
I'm sad about the look of a map such as this, coming inside of a box with the FFG logo on it. But there are now two issues I've sent regarding legal movement on the new board. I will post here with my answer, but it involves the 3mm boarder between the 4th-down red invasion zone, and what would be South Carolina, and another 3mm gap from same South Carolina, going NW to what would be western Virginia (the space with the 'A' and 'S' from the label 'EAST'). Neither of these gaps existed in the original board, and it would create the first and only 'beachhead' landing space that could be attacked from TWO Invasion Zones in the game.
Disappointed about the map. Rest of the game was as expected.
I'm not usually critical of FFG, being a fanboy with almost 50 different games of theirs, but I'm sad about this.
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I was disappointed by the goofy embellishments on the board.
A game board should be an unambiguously crafted playing surface, not a collage of military clip art.
I agree, the graphics should be pre-screened by players or even pre publish, offer various mock-ups for a vote…nah that's too unwieldy
Our biggest issue so far has to be with the 4 spots on the map that are questionable regarding their connection to other areas.
The smallest is the very small zone line offset just south of Minneapolis. As the zone lines were drawn ONTO the map, then this could have clearly been adjusted to be a point, allowing no connection, or clearly set further apart of establish a connection.
There are 2 other in-country spots that are small, in the 2-3 mm range, but they are viewed as connections as they are clearly not a point, just not very large, so there have been no arguments on them.
The other major issue is the invasion zone coming from the south player. In the original game, the area 2 spaces east of Phoenix was clearly invadable. In the new map, it is less clear as the connection area is smaller AND it gets lost in the border graphics. But, the E-W line that runs along the south of the area in question was purposely jogged to the south, and where it connects to the border black line, creates another 3 mm seperation. Had the line NOT been jogged south, the lines would have connected at a point and there would have been NO connection nor argument.
Due to this issue the game has not hit the table again in over 2 weeks, and 2 of us have passed on buying the new game to replace our old version, which was played by our group for many many years (we are all "seasoned" gamers).
I cannot believe that FFG has not only let the game out with these issues with the map, but they have made no effort to clarify the questions despite the posts on BGG. For such a natural and long-awaited sucess to be released with these flaws is shameful to them and disrespectful to the gaming community.
I respectfully request that FFG to address these issues and post an official map clarification notice immediatey
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