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Reprint HERO System 6th Edition Core Books ?

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Hello,

 

I know that we would be many to back for a reprint of HERO System 6th Edition Core Books 1 & 2 (modified to include the errata).

 

Why not do a project like that with maybe the Basic Rules and other books as bonus if the crowd-funding sky rockets :) ?

 

No ?

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No - though they are all available through One Books Shelf (RPGNow, DriveThruRPG, etc etc) in the form of print-on-demand. So you *can* get physical copies if you need them.

 

Hero Games is more interested in doing shorter, rules-inclusive books like Champions Complete and Fantasy Hero Complete these days, and also supporting our small but productive community of third party publishers. In fact, we will have some news on that front to announce shortly!

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It's my understanding that that's supposed to be changing.  The previous file had the colored text in the index converted to black and white incorrectly, so that the index entries weren't visible in the finished product.  I think that's being worked on, but I couldn't tell you when it's supposed to be finished.

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On ‎7‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 6:14 PM, Chris Goodwin said:

I couldn't tell you when it's supposed to be finished.

It was supposed to have been finished more than 7 months ago, since Jason's post was written in the present (not future) tense, at the time (which was Dec 8, 2017).

 

Specifically:

 

On ‎12‎/‎8‎/‎2017 at 12:37 PM, Jason S.Walters said:

they are all available through One Books Shelf (RPGNow, DriveThruRPG, etc etc) in the form of print-on-demand. So you *can* get physical copies if you need them.

 

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14 hours ago, zslane said:

I'd like to see a Star Hero Complete and an Action Hero Complete.

I think Star Hero would be more likely but considering that Fantasy Hero Complete I think didn’t do so well, I think it’s highly unlikely.

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On 8/9/2018 at 4:41 AM, Ninja-Bear said:

I think Star Hero would be more likely but considering that Fantasy Hero Complete I think didn’t do so well, I think it’s highly unlikely.

As someone who had Fantasy Hero Complete at one point, the finished product was not that impressive, so you're probably correct in the idea that it didn't fare that well in terms of sales. The graphic design and interior art were disappointing to where they were major detractors that resulted in various negative comments being posted about it in game forums. The Fantasy Hero 6th Edition source book had a beautiful design and unique font-styled titled, yet Fantasy Hero Complete had a generic font title with cover art that was confusing (attempt at satire, maybe?) and was a significant step backwards from both 6th and 5th Edition Fantasy Hero source books.

 

A concern I have is the latest Kickstarter project, Champions Now, intended to re-energize 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Editions of Champions, will result in something as graphically regrettable as Fantasy Hero Complete was cover to cover, further reducing the chances of a quality Star Hero Complete being produced later due to lackluster sales.

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On 8/13/2018 at 9:18 PM, fdw3773 said:

As someone who had Fantasy Hero Complete at one point, the finished product was not that impressive, so you're probably correct in the idea that it didn't fare that well in terms of sales. The graphic design and interior art were disappointing to where they were major detractors that resulted in various negative comments being posted about it in game forums. The Fantasy Hero 6th Edition source book had a beautiful design and unique font-styled titled, yet Fantasy Hero Complete had a generic font title with cover art that was confusing (attempt at satire, maybe?) and was a significant step backwards from both 6th and 5th Edition Fantasy Hero source books.

 

I'm totally with you on this point. I thought FHC was pretty ugly in general. The font, for God's sake, is so characterless and could have been so easily changed to something interesting. Most of the art is from the FH6e book, just black and white. But you're right, this looks totally generic and really uninteresting to someone who doesn't know HERO System.

 

On 8/13/2018 at 9:18 PM, fdw3773 said:

A concern I have is the latest Kickstarter project, Champions Now, intended to re-energize 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Editions of Champions, will result in something as graphically regrettable as Fantasy Hero Complete was cover to cover, further reducing the chances of a quality Star Hero Complete being produced later due to lackluster sales.

 

I've been talking to Ron Edwards, the guy who is doing Champions Now, and his goal isn't to revitalize the older editions. He's instead trying to apply emergent story theory in an easy to digest Champions 3e format. There may not be any artwork at all, I'm really not sure. You can get a free copy of the playtest document to see what he's up to. It's sort of like applying Aaron Allston's Strike Force to old-school (i.e. simpler) rules, with an emphasis on the emergent world aspects that he calls "story now." It's a great read, but is not intended to replace the 6e ruleset. It's more like a personal experiment on his part.

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1 hour ago, Brian Stanfield said:

I've been talking to Ron Edwards, the guy who is doing Champions Now, and his goal isn't to revitalize the older editions. He's instead trying to apply emergent story theory in an easy to digest Champions 3e format. There may not be any artwork at all, I'm really not sure.

I must have misinterpreted what was written on an earlier post, "Why Now Champions Now?" that read, "And, finally, four: get new players to try the Hero System, and old ones who have moved on to other games to come back and try it again. This last part is the important one to Champions Now: I wanted to publish a product that would simultaneously interest some older players, while encouraging the generally younger fans who purchase books from Indie Press Revolution to give a form of Champions a try."

 

From my understanding, the project was drawing from 1st, 2nd and 3rd Editions into something to interest new players to try it and current and former Champions players to collect it. So again, it was misinterpretation on my part.

 

The idea of a game book with no internal artwork, or even cover art, is somewhat disturbing, especially for the superhero genre. As a longtime Champions fan and collector, the last thing I would want to collect is a book that reads like a dry textbook....but then again, even textbooks have diagrams and images to illustrate its concepts.

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I thought I was always in the camp of art doesn’t matter. That being said, everytime I look at the cover art for FHC, I wonder what were they thinking? It doesn’t say adventure or excitement to me. Now the interior I don’t think is bad. 

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It's funny, when Fifth Edition and the first Champions books for that line came out, there was so much excitement and pent-up demand, they practically flew off store shelves. I'm not sure what happened since then. Did Hero Games make too many mistakes in what they published and how they presented it? Did they just saturate their own market with product until there was no longer enough demand? Did the nature of the hobby and the gaming public as a whole move past what Hero offers? Was it some combination of the above, or something else?

 

Fans have offered their own explanations and "fixes," based on their preferences and experience, and will continue to do so. But there's no uniformity to them, and none of them seem to be adequate to return Hero Games to its glory days.

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58 minutes ago, Lord Liaden said:

It's funny, when Fifth Edition and the first Champions books for that line came out, there was so much excitement and pent-up demand, they practically flew off store shelves. I'm not sure what happened since then. Did Hero Games make too many mistakes in what they published and how they presented it? Did they just saturate their own market with product until there was no longer enough demand? Did the nature of the hobby and the gaming public as a whole move past what Hero offers? Was it some combination of the above, or something else?

 

Fans have offered their own explanations and "fixes," based on their preferences and experience, and will continue to do so. But there's no uniformity to them, and none of them seem to be adequate to return Hero Games to its glory days.

 

Maybe it's because they sold their Champions IP for the mmorpg, and people just got burned out on the video game part of it and had no desire to return to/learn the paper and pencil version of the game? Maybe it's because HeroClix and DiceMasters have quick and easy versions of supers games? It's especially baffling, given the preponderance of superhero movies in the past 10 years, that people aren't more interested in the game. Maybe people are just more hooked on the "official" universes in the movies rather than creating their own characters? Who knows?!

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12 hours ago, fdw3773 said:

I must have misinterpreted what was written on an earlier post, "Why Now Champions Now?" that read, "And, finally, four: get new players to try the Hero System, and old ones who have moved on to other games to come back and try it again. This last part is the important one to Champions Now: I wanted to publish a product that would simultaneously interest some older players, while encouraging the generally younger fans who purchase books from Indie Press Revolution to give a form of Champions a try."

 

From my understanding, the project was drawing from 1st, 2nd and 3rd Editions into something to interest new players to try it and current and former Champions players to collect it. So again, it was misinterpretation on my part.

 

No, I don't think you're misinterpreting it at all. In all honesty, I think Jason was throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what stuck with HERO folks. There was a bit of a backlash when the project was announced. He really just saw it as a fun project to try, and didn't realize people would feel so strongly about it. Ron Edwards himself has said that it is just an experiment on his part to see how much he can simplify and rationalize the rules to make them easier to take up and start right away. But he's doing things like eliminating Killing Attacks and making them into Advantages on Normal Attacks, and various changes like that. For him it's more about seeing what might work better or cleaner. I'm not sure he's too worried about attracting new players as much as he is trying to recapture the fluid, wide-open feel of the game in the '80s.

 

12 hours ago, fdw3773 said:

The idea of a game book with no internal artwork, or even cover art, is somewhat disturbing, especially for the superhero genre. As a longtime Champions fan and collector, the last thing I would want to collect is a book that reads like a dry textbook....but then again, even textbooks have diagrams and images to illustrate its concepts.

 

This may have been misspoken on my part, but so far there is almost no artwork in his test document, but it's just an alpha copy so probably is no indication as to whether there will be artwork. I suspect that he's got a lot of art to work with, so I doubt the final version will be artless. But it's hard to tell from a rough working draft. Check it out and see for yourself: http://adeptplay.com/sites/default/files/Champions Now playtest.pdf

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23 minutes ago, Brian Stanfield said:

 

No, I don't think you're misinterpreting it at all. In all honesty, I think Jason was throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what stuck with HERO folks. There was a bit of a backlash when the project was announced. He really just saw it as a fun project to try, and didn't realize people would feel so strongly about it. Ron Edwards himself has said that it is just an experiment on his part to see how much he can simplify and rationalize the rules to make them easier to take up and start right away. But he's doing things like eliminating Killing Attacks and making them into Advantages on Normal Attacks, and various changes like that. For him it's more about seeing what might work better or cleaner. I'm not sure he's too worried about attracting new players as much as he is trying to recapture the fluid, wide-open feel of the game in the '80s.

 

 

Which is fair enough, and a worthy effort. But Ron Edwards has chosen to seek funding for it from fans, and Jason has chosen to cast it as supporting the Hero System, i.e. put money into this if you want Hero to continue, even if you don't want the product. They've dipped into that well before, but there's only so much you can expect fans to support out of loyalty alone.

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9 hours ago, Brian Stanfield said:

This may have been misspoken on my part, but so far there is almost no artwork in his test document, but it's just an alpha copy so probably is no indication as to whether there will be artwork. I suspect that he's got a lot of art to work with, so I doubt the final version will be artless. But it's hard to tell from a rough working draft. Check it out and see for yourself: http://adeptplay.com/sites/default/files/Champions Now playtest.pdf

 

Thanks for the link. I did a precursory look at the rough draft and it's definitely something with a lot of refinement ahead of it across game mechanics (substance) and style (graphics and layout) if it's going to meet its desired intent and not look like something that recycled existing ideas poorly and attempts to pass itself off as something new and better.

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On 8/17/2018 at 9:55 AM, Lord Liaden said:

 

Which is fair enough, and a worthy effort. But Ron Edwards has chosen to seek funding for it from fans, and Jason has chosen to cast it as supporting the Hero System, i.e. put money into this if you want Hero to continue, even if you don't want the product. They've dipped into that well before, but there's only so much you can expect fans to support out of loyalty alone.

 

That's a really good point. When I talked to Jason at Origins he was a bit flabbergasted by the fan reaction on the HERO games website. I don't think that the "powers that be" understand how frustrated we have gotten with the apparent stall in the HERO System. Every new thing seems more like a look backwards rather than ahead. Did we really need a Champions Complete? Or even worse, a sub-par Fantasy Hero Complete? They are so aesthetically deficient they couldn't possibly have been designed to be competitive in the brick-and-mortar marketplace. So what exactly are they?

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On 8/17/2018 at 4:22 PM, Ninja-Bear said:

As much as Champions Now sounds interesting, I wish this would have been a supplement to Champions Complete/6e rather than a stand alone product.

 

I'm leaning in the same direction. Having talked to Ron a bit, and done a video with him (there are a whole series of videos on YouTube, and he does one with our Chris Goodwin as well), I'm getting a feel for what he's doing, and am excited by it. But my big question (which I'm trying to ask him in a new video if he's game) is why we need to go back to 3rd edition rules rather than make the 6e rules more accessible? He could do what he is working towards with the 6e rules, but he is also biased against universal systems, so he is really doing a sort of "old school renaissance" approach with Champions Now.

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On 8/17/2018 at 7:24 PM, fdw3773 said:

 

Thanks for the link. I did a precursory look at the rough draft and it's definitely something with a lot of refinement ahead of it across game mechanics (substance) and style (graphics and layout) if it's going to meet its desired intent and not look like something that recycled existing ideas poorly and attempts to pass itself off as something new and better.

 

Rough indeed! He's got a beta version coming out soon, but it's still really just a test document at this stage. He's more interested in playtesting Champions Now at this point more than he is in creating a clean presentation.

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I can think of lots of reasons I'd want to step back from 6e and return to a simpler time in the system's history, but for me that would be 4e rather than 3e. Since there is no forward movement to be found in 6e, at this point, what else is there to do but look back and mine fresh ideas from past editions? We can talk/debate all we want about what should happen with the Hero System going forward, but I think we all know nothing of enduring substance will actually ever happen. I find such discussions to be colossal wastes of time, (creative) energy, and bandwidth. Might as well give projects like Champions Now our blessing since at least it represents someone's vision of something that might find traction with a decent subset of HS players.

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