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Author Topic: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes  (Read 12771 times)

mbear

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Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« on: 16 June 2013, 10:36:33 »
Hi everyone. Just wanted to put down the notes I took in the "What's up with CGL?" talk at Origins 2013. Sorry it's late, but there was a lot of cool stuff at Origins. I may have misunderstood what I heard, but here you go. Any errors are mine, not theirs. The panel was Jason S. (Shadowrun's Herb Beas), Loren Coleman, and Bull (Shadowrun Missions coordinator).

BattleTech-BattleTech as we all know and love it isn't going to go away. It's a core line. However, CGL is looking to expand in order to pick up some players from the Warmachine and maybe WH40K universes. The miniatures players. Alpha Strike is one take on that. Another thing CGL has considered is using Leviathans style cards instead of record sheets, but that's a huge blue sky "what if we do this?" thing, not a planned product like Alpha Strike so don't get your hopes up. The goal is to have Alpha Strike for GenCon, but that's subject to Murphy's Law.

Shadowrun-2013 is the year of Shadowrun. A custom print run of the Fifth Edition rules was drop shipped to the Greater Columbus Convention Center. It has a little "ORIGINS 2013 SPECIAL EDITION" note along the front cover. It arrived, and sold out. So you're just going to have to wait, probably till GenCon or after. 5th Edition fixes a lot of stuff that was broken in the 4th edition, like vehicle combat. The deck building game demos were always busy when I stopped by the CGL booth, so that's good.  (Update 20130617: The miniatures combat game is coming out as well, sometime** later this year.)

[Thought from Matt: This may be the largest book I've ever seen CGL print. It's 480 pages, softcover. When I hold it in my left hand, I have to hold my hardcover copies of A Time of War and Strategic Operations to get the same weight in my right hand. No kidding. I think this is awesome, but I'm worried that Randall will take this as a personal challenge when it comes to writing Interstellar Operations. If he does and prints a huge tome, it may well cause me to throw out my back. On the upside, we could probably tape it to someone's chest to demonstrate the benefits and drawbacks of Modular Armor.  ;)]

Leviathan-Leviathans German and Italian fleet boxes are done. The problem is that CGL is trying to figure out the best way to get it out to customers without screwing them on the cost. As it stands now they could release it, but at a cost they think is too high. CGL is trying to figure out how to reduce that cost. If they can't, there is the option of making this the "WH40K" line of CGL, where you just have to pay more for the product. Loren doesn't want to do that however, and neither does anyone else at CGL.

Novels-New Shadowrun novels will be coming out this year. They're hoping to bring new BattleTech novels as well. According to Loren, CGL could have always printed new fiction. The problem with bringing the older titles into print was solely one of logistics. There were four companies* that inked contracts with authors. Very few of those contracts included an "epublication" clause. So those need to be renegotiated to get fair compensation to the authors. The other problem is the fact that four companies issued contracts, but not all of those contracts made it to the successor companies. So Topps may not have a copy of the contract Mike Stackpole signed with FASA. And they need to determine how much money Topps has to pay an author who signed a contract with FanPro, for example. Now multiply those issues across four companies* and about twenty-five authors. It just takes time to get them all resolved. And that sucks up a lot of time. The publisher had little to nothing to do with this.

CGL has now decided that tracking this stuff down and resolving the issues is important, but not as important as getting new fiction out there. They're still going to get the older titles resolved and out to us as they can, but they're going to devote more time to getting new fiction distributed. (I personally welcome this decision, because I'd love to see real books again. Or at least a lot of new stuff in the BattleShop.)

Other games-Cosmic Patrol will have another book coming out next year. They're really excited about it. Seeing a demo of The Duke convinced me to purchase a copy. There's a lot of expansion options for The Duke, and CGL has several planned expansion packs completed, but needs to get them printed. (One fan showed them his expansion of The Duke that used Marvel Comics characters. They said it was ridiculously overpowered, but just like the Marvel Universe you get more and more people involved in the fight and it was actually a lot of fun. [Matt's Thought: Good luck getting approval from Marvel Inc. on printing that.])

So there you have it. Everything I noted and wrote down in my little book. Hope it helps fuel hours and hours of rumors and debate.

**Sometime later this year is as exact as I can remember. Sorry.
« Last Edit: 17 June 2013, 09:37:24 by mbear »
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You bought the box set and are ready to expand your BT experience. Now what? (Thanks Sartis!)

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #1 on: 16 June 2013, 10:46:31 »
Thank you kindly.

I think that sets of colour laminated Unit Cards for Alpha Strike itself would be a welcome addition to that particular project.

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #2 on: 16 June 2013, 10:57:15 »
Novels!
Maker of big things.

HikageMaru

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #3 on: 16 June 2013, 11:32:51 »
They're hoping to bring new BattleTech novels as well. According to Loren, CGL could have always printed new fiction. The problem with bringing the older titles into print was solely one of logistics. There were four companies* that inked contracts with authors. Very few of those contracts included an "epublication" clause. So those need to be renegotiated to get fair compensation to the authors. The other problem is the fact that four companies issued contracts, but not all of those contracts made it to the successor companies. So Topps may not have a copy of the contract Mike Stackpole signed with FASA. And they need to determine how much money Topps has to pay an author who signed a contract with FanPro, for example. Now multiply those issues across four companies* and about twenty-five authors. It just takes time to get them all resolved. And that sucks up a lot of time. The publisher had little to nothing to do with this.

CGL has now decided that tracking this stuff down and resolving the issues is important, but not as important as getting new fiction out there. They're still going to get the older titles resolved and out to us as they can, but they're going to devote more time to getting new fiction distributed. (I personally welcome this decision, because I'd love to see real books again. Or at least a lot of new stuff in the BattleShop.)

THIS is what I've been waiting to hear about. BT really needs to get novels out there, in my opinion, and getting all of these issues resolved would be wonderful.

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #4 on: 16 June 2013, 11:43:53 »
So now we finally know why there hasn't been new novels for so long. Thank you for telling us, Catalyst. :)

And the news that new BTech novels might be pubished as well as Catalyst finally having decided that devoting greater attention than before to this issue are the best BTech-related news I've seen in several years.  O0

The publication format will be no issue for me. I have a Kindle Paperwhite I'm very happy with, and if the new novels were published exclusively on BattleCorps, I'd happily renew my membership there. And perhaps I can even start hoping that the new novels would be a return to the glory days of the very long, very detail-filled early novels rather than the bare-bones last novels that, IIRC, were limited to 80,000 words.

For me, the novels and the characters in them have always been the heart of BattleTech. Without interesting characters I could see doing things in the novel, without experiencing events through their eyes, I drifted away from the BT universe over the last half-dozen years. I've been lurking, but doing little more. I just lost interest. Being told in a sourcebook what a character is doing or has recently done just doesn't work as a substitute. And while the BattleCorps short stories are certainly a commendable effort, for me they just couldn't offer the depth of characterization, plotting and details about the universe that I crave and can only find in novel-length works.

Also, I believe novels spur discussion here on the forums. I remember the heated discussions about Victor Steiner-Davion, Sun-Tzu Liao, Hanse Davion. Such discussions have been few and far between in the last several years. If novels returned, we could possibly have discussions about Devlin Stone and the many other new characters who arrived on the BT scene in the years between Endgame and the start of the Dark Age novels.

HikageMaru

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #5 on: 16 June 2013, 11:49:52 »
I feel very strongly about the need for new novels. The game sourcebooks are nice, but we really need novels to be immersed in the world in my opinion. Frankly, I'd like to see novels bridging the gap between End Game and Ghost War, taking us through the Jihad. I think the lack of novels is why I could never really get into the Jihad.

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #6 on: 16 June 2013, 11:52:58 »
I am personally very encouraged by the legwork the guys are doing to make this happen and that it is legwork and logistics required. Good job.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #7 on: 16 June 2013, 12:26:13 »
Honestly, screw the old fiction. Most people can find the old books on Amazon if they really wanted it. But we need new books bad. Its books that get players hooked, its books that advance the storyline. Its books that honestly made Battletech great. Without them we are missing a vital component.
I am pretty happy to hear about Leviathans, but where is my American Fleet? I needs me a Great White Fleet, and I needs it bad! That or I just want a Leviathan USS New Jersey to sink Brit Leviathans.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #8 on: 16 June 2013, 12:53:49 »
BattleTech-BattleTech as we all know and love it isn't going to go away. It's a core line. However, CGL is looking to expand in order to pick up some players from the Warmachine and maybe WH40K universes. The miniatures players. Alpha Strike is one take on that. Another thing CGL has considered is using Leviathans style cards instead of record sheets, but that's a huge blue sky "what if we do this?" thing, not a planned product like Alpha Strike so don't get your hopes up. The goal is to have Alpha Strike for GenCon, but that's subject to Murphy's Law.
Very nice

Quote
Leviathan-Leviathans German and Italian fleet boxes are done.
Oh heck yeah, gimme that German Battleship lovins!  8)

Quote
Novels-New Shadowrun novels will be coming out this year. They're hoping to bring new BattleTech novels as well. According to Loren, CGL could have always printed new fiction. The problem with bringing the older titles into print was solely one of logistics. There were four companies* that inked contracts with authors. Very few of those contracts included an "epublication" clause. So those need to be renegotiated to get fair compensation to the authors. The other problem is the fact that four companies issued contracts, but not all of those contracts made it to the successor companies. So Topps may not have a copy of the contract Mike Stackpole signed with FASA. And they need to determine how much money Topps has to pay an author who signed a contract with FanPro, for example. Now multiply those issues across four companies* and about twenty-five authors. It just takes time to get them all resolved. And that sucks up a lot of time. The publisher had little to nothing to do with this.

CGL has now decided that tracking this stuff down and resolving the issues is important, but not as important as getting new fiction out there. They're still going to get the older titles resolved and out to us as they can, but they're going to devote more time to getting new fiction distributed. (I personally welcome this decision, because I'd love to see real books again. Or at least a lot of new stuff in the BattleShop.)
This, yes, all of this. Finally I'm starting to get why we kept getting "not now" answers and brief replies. The paperwork and math for this is probably a headache that will cause folks to pop aspirin like Pez. I'm excited that new novels is a possibility for our title. I'm also glad to see our friends in Shadowrun get some print as well.

Quote
Other games-Cosmic Patrol will have another book coming out next year. They're really excited about it. Seeing a demo of The Duke convinced me to purchase a copy. There's a lot of expansion options for The Duke, and CGL has several planned expansion packs completed, but needs to get them printed.
I think I'll be getting mine soon, thank you kickstarter, and I'm giggling like a kid before Christmas.
« Last Edit: 16 June 2013, 13:12:04 by Atlas3060 »
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Coldwyn

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #9 on: 16 June 2013, 13:28:33 »
I´m actually looking forward with a sense of dread to Shadowrun 5.
The last edition already went strange ways so far (like 50% of the stuff availlable should rather be in BattleTech than in a street-level game). When they start the story anwe, how will that end?
it´s not necessarily that i´m immoral of character, i just don´t take great stock in the morality of others, that´s all

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #10 on: 16 June 2013, 13:59:10 »
Hey, I was there too, coincidentally. I was the guy in the back row who kept throwing out commentary and jokes  :D

Quote
Novels-New Shadowrun novels will be coming out this year. They're hoping to bring new BattleTech novels as well.
Before the official announcement of new SR novels came down not long ago, I'd already known that SR novels were going to be coming back (this was mostly due to my involvement in the Shadowrun Returns Anthology—which looks fantastic, by the way; SR fans are going to love it!), so I figured BT novels would be right around the corner. I was just merely waiting for the shoe to drop. However, this announcement at the panel was news to even me, so it's nice to know that even NDAed freelancers that often see behind the curtain can still be pleasantly surprised from time to time :)

Quote
Other games-Cosmic Patrol will have another book coming out next year. They're really excited about it.
Actually, The Moon Must Be Ours! is slated for Gen Con, but keep your fingers crossed. Even if for some reason it doesn't make Gen Con, it should be out this year, not next year. Loren said the Cosmic Patrol plan is one book a year for three years (and who knows what is planned after that…). Cosmic Patrol debuted Gen Con 2011, and Into the Cosmos debuted at Gen Con 2012, so having The Moon Must Be Ours! launch at Gen Con 2013 would be a perfect three-peat.


Philip A. LeeManaging Editor of Shrapnel, the Official BattleTech Magazine. Author of BattleCorps stories A Wolf in the Eyrie, Half of a Warrior, Seeds of Loyalty, Whispering Death, Fragments of History, A Living Epitaph, Double Down, So Costly a Sacrifice, Rain Dance, Quail Hunting, A Show of Force, and A Keystone Arch, Seven Years' Bad Luck, High Value Target, The Face of the Enemy, Horn and Fang, and A Measure of Clarity
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #11 on: 16 June 2013, 14:02:44 »
I´m actually looking forward with a sense of dread to Shadowrun 5.
The last edition already went strange ways so far (like 50% of the stuff availlable should rather be in BattleTech than in a street-level game). When they start the story anwe, how will that end?
I had somewhat of a hand in SR5 (meaning I'm not exactly sure where my name went in the credits, but it should be in there somewhere), but I didn't get a chance to playtest it. However, if I recall, the core book has mostly the same entry-level gear available as the other SR core books. If you want infantry lasers and high-end, mil-spec weapons and vehicles, you'll probably have to wait for the gear splatbook.


Philip A. LeeManaging Editor of Shrapnel, the Official BattleTech Magazine. Author of BattleCorps stories A Wolf in the Eyrie, Half of a Warrior, Seeds of Loyalty, Whispering Death, Fragments of History, A Living Epitaph, Double Down, So Costly a Sacrifice, Rain Dance, Quail Hunting, A Show of Force, and A Keystone Arch, Seven Years' Bad Luck, High Value Target, The Face of the Enemy, Horn and Fang, and A Measure of Clarity
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #12 on: 16 June 2013, 14:08:49 »
When Quick Strike goes on pre-order, hooooooo boy.  I want that book in dead tree format.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #13 on: 16 June 2013, 14:19:38 »
I had somewhat of a hand in SR5 (meaning I'm not exactly sure where my name went in the credits, but it should be in there somewhere), but I didn't get a chance to playtest it. However, if I recall, the core book has mostly the same entry-level gear available as the other SR core books. If you want infantry lasers and high-end, mil-spec weapons and vehicles, you'll probably have to wait for the gear splatbook.

Actually, the other way around. I want street level and punk in my cyberpunk and the stuff they churned out in 4E, for me, is mostly milspec stuff that doesn´t fit cyberpunk.
it´s not necessarily that i´m immoral of character, i just don´t take great stock in the morality of others, that´s all

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #14 on: 16 June 2013, 14:41:58 »
Actually, the other way around. I want street level and punk in my cyberpunk and the stuff they churned out in 4E, for me, is mostly milspec stuff that doesn´t fit cyberpunk.
Huh. I could've sworn all the mil-spec stuff (aside from armor and firearms) was in the SR4 splatbooks more so than the main book. Usually people can't even afford mil-spec stuff right out of the gate (e.g., wasn't the Ares laser like 2,000,000¥ in one of the old SR splatbooks?). At any rate, it all boils down to the campaign you want to play: sure mil-spec stuff is available, but it doesn't mean PCs can afford it (try buying a 2.3 million-nuyen helicopter at black market prices when you're earning 5k per run and have pay 1k/per month for room and board) or that GMs will allow the players to have it, but then there are some GMs that would give the team some tanks or combat helicopters as a mission reward rather than having them pay black-market prices for them. Really it's just a matter of personal taste; the GM decides what the players can buy or obtain. In any case, if your enemies have mil-spec stuff and your team doesn't, then that's an issue of the GM not having good game balance.


Philip A. LeeManaging Editor of Shrapnel, the Official BattleTech Magazine. Author of BattleCorps stories A Wolf in the Eyrie, Half of a Warrior, Seeds of Loyalty, Whispering Death, Fragments of History, A Living Epitaph, Double Down, So Costly a Sacrifice, Rain Dance, Quail Hunting, A Show of Force, and A Keystone Arch, Seven Years' Bad Luck, High Value Target, The Face of the Enemy, Horn and Fang, and A Measure of Clarity
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #15 on: 16 June 2013, 14:52:12 »
I feel very strongly about the need for new novels. The game sourcebooks are nice, but we really need novels to be immersed in the world in my opinion. Frankly, I'd like to see novels bridging the gap between End Game and Ghost War, taking us through the Jihad. I think the lack of novels is why I could never really get into the Jihad.

+1 I've got most of the jihad sourcebooks but I couldn't tell you more than a few details beyond stuff got nuked.

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #16 on: 16 June 2013, 15:59:25 »
Also, one thing to keep in mind regarding novels is they likely won't happen overnight. Usually with traditional publishers, once the book has been written and an editor has bought it, it can take up to 2 years until the book actually sees print. Granted, that's for traditional publishers from the Big Six, but unless CGL already has novels being written right this moment (which I doubt they do, given the newness of the announcement), then it's going to be awhile before we see any new novels.


Philip A. LeeManaging Editor of Shrapnel, the Official BattleTech Magazine. Author of BattleCorps stories A Wolf in the Eyrie, Half of a Warrior, Seeds of Loyalty, Whispering Death, Fragments of History, A Living Epitaph, Double Down, So Costly a Sacrifice, Rain Dance, Quail Hunting, A Show of Force, and A Keystone Arch, Seven Years' Bad Luck, High Value Target, The Face of the Enemy, Horn and Fang, and A Measure of Clarity
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #17 on: 16 June 2013, 16:08:37 »
Hoping to see the Dark Age line continue, if that's possible. One of the few things I had trouble with in ER:3145 was seeing the massive changes to characters that we had plenty of coverage for in the novel line, but no real context to it outside of the sourcebook mentions. Katana Tormark is in jail. Caleb Davion is dead. Kisho Nova Cat is on the run (maybe?). All kinds of things are going on with characters that we got to see in the novels, and having a complex and interesting character like Caleb go from novel-level stories to a few pages in a sourcebook was disappointing- I wanted to be able to view things from his perspective, the betrayal by the Ravens, the final battle realizing the Combine forces were trying to capture him rather than kill him (at first anyway), whether or not "Mason" was still talking to him the whole time. There's so much to this that a sourcebook can't give us, hoping we can pick up again where Bonfire left off at some point.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #18 on: 16 June 2013, 16:13:04 »
Ugh, I don't know if I'd still want to play BattleTech in the year 2103.  Our great-grandchildren would muck up all of our tried-and-true phase-based gameplay and dice-rolling with all of those virtual tables they'd use.

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #19 on: 16 June 2013, 17:24:53 »
Good to hear about BT, of course, but great to hear that Leviathans products are fast-approaching black smoke on the horizon.  Randall's no doubt busy with his other obligations, so news over on the Levs site is rare but exciting.  I look forward to flying my flag from the deck of the Baden!

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #20 on: 16 June 2013, 17:36:01 »
Stoked about the prospect of seeing proper BT novels again. Way to go CGL!
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #21 on: 16 June 2013, 18:00:18 »
I hope the novel problem is truely resolved.  I still remember that promise years ago with A Bonfire of Worlds and Shadows of Faith.  They refused to talk about it.  I hope this isn't one those.  I can only hope for the best.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #22 on: 16 June 2013, 18:08:42 »
I actually forgot about Shadow's of Faith. I do hope that eventually gets released when we get books again. Its probably sitting on a hard drive somewhere gathering dust.
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #23 on: 16 June 2013, 18:30:23 »
I actually forgot about Shadow's of Faith. I do hope that eventually gets released when we get books again. Its probably sitting on a hard drive somewhere gathering dust.
Actually its been abandoned according to TPTB when it was asked sometime in the past.  The finished chapters were put on BattleCorp if i remember correctly.  Damn shame, the only published part of the book is in the First Jihad Sourcebook, Blake Ascending & original Dawn of the Jihad. 
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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #24 on: 16 June 2013, 18:59:34 »
Excited for Alpha Strike and the novels. Be nice ta see a Tim Zahn novel or ten. Also excited about Cosmic Patrol. Now if only those forums were active :/

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #25 on: 16 June 2013, 21:53:38 »
This, yes, all of this. Finally I'm starting to get why we kept getting "not now" answers and brief replies. The paperwork and math for this is probably a headache that will cause folks to pop aspirin like Pez. I'm excited that new novels is a possibility for our title.

Actually, this is the part I don't get. If that's all it was, then why were we kept in the dark on it? Why not just tell us this from the get-go?
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Atlas3060

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #26 on: 16 June 2013, 22:14:50 »
Actually, this is the part I don't get. If that's all it was, then why were we kept in the dark on it? Why not just tell us this from the get-go?
Well here's my guess.*
Any time the public is given even the inkling of a rumor from those on high we run wild with all sorts of hopes, dreams, and fears.
All of these mix together and so rumors are formed. People will take those rumors and run with them as if they are truth.
Then after all has been settled some misconceptions will still be buried deep in the minds and hearts of people and would cling to them even after evidence to the contrary has been presented to them.

Also let's look at it as though this bit of news was the process so far. Maybe they finally got to a point where they can present this as the explanation.

We are looking at it from this somewhat finished result, but could you have imagined the wailing and gnashing of teeth if TPTB just flat out told us "At this point the book guys say no"?
We'd flip our respective excrements and then that would look bad for the company who may still be attempting to get some progress even after being told this hypothetical no for this example.

So yeah we were left in the dark, but now we're at a place where there is hope and a explanation as to why we were left in the dark.

*All guesses from this post spring forth only from my imagination. I have absolutely zero idea how businesses, more specifically this one, do what they do. I'm only going off gut instinct and what I've seen from various companies as a consumer
« Last Edit: 16 June 2013, 22:19:58 by Atlas3060 »
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rebs

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #27 on: 16 June 2013, 22:22:38 »
Novels!

Stoked about the prospect of seeing proper BT novels again. Way to go CGL!

I hope the novel problem is truely resolved.  I still remember that promise years ago with A Bonfire of Worlds and Shadows of Faith.  They refused to talk about it.  I hope this isn't one those.  I can only hope for the best.

Novels!!!!  Heck yeah!!   ;D

YingJanshi

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #28 on: 16 June 2013, 22:34:34 »
Maybe we'll get the rest of the Founding of the Clans trilogy? (A guy can hope right?)

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HikageMaru

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Re: Origins 2103 "What's up with CGL?" notes
« Reply #29 on: 16 June 2013, 23:04:19 »
Actually, this is the part I don't get. If that's all it was, then why were we kept in the dark on it? Why not just tell us this from the get-go?

There have also been circumstances where something was announced prematurely when all the ducks weren't in a row and it ended up not happening or being significantly delayed, such as the original announcement about novels (or that we got the unseen back). Sometimes it's best to let everything play out before you notify your fan base.

 

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