What would you have done differently?

So there’s a thread over on Board Game Geek - asking what you think should have been done differently? And I thought as fans deep invested in this game, we’ve all found some little gripes or tweaks we’d address? So what would your’s be?

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The big complaint I heard from the guys at my LGS was that the rulebook was impenetrable and there weren’t any official learn to play videos or similar explaining the game on AEG’s website. They struggled to pick the game up and they felt this impacted sales as they couldn’t explain the game well or provide demos for customers. I was offering demo games and teaching, but my time was limited and I only got a few games in with the staff and customers interested in the game. I heard directly and indirectly that a lot of people had picked up the base set but couldn’t figure the game out so just stuck to playing their usual games.

I had a couple of competitive players buy into the game and start playing for a while, but they didn’t stick with it long as they found they couldn’t pick things up quickly and easily and start doing well at tournaments (probably didn’t help that the northern UK tournament meta is home to some very good players). The only people I introduced who stuck with the game were friends who liked the setting from playing Deadlands.

A clearly laid-out rulebook and more learn-to-play aids are definitely things that were needed.


I think the core set was the biggest problem, wording on many cards was too ambigues and then someone made a bad decision (IMO) to give RAW rullings.
What didn’t help was power level of circus and slide, then very bad introduction of Blessed and possibly two new factions were introduced too early ( although I rate Faction Pack very highly, it was almost perfect).
I really like the current meta, we just lost too many players during first 12 months.


The introduction of the Blessed was a big factor in one of the competitive guys I mentioned dropping the game. The Blessed were the thing that really grabbed him, but he struggled to build a decent deck with them and wasn’t encouraged by the support (or lack of) they seemed to be getting.

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Posted elsewhere, but making the base set 2x meant that the intro decks were craptastic.
I’d love to see either a 4x base set or an affordable (e.g. $5-10) 2x ‘completion set’.
Also, the ‘board game in a box’ is a nice concept, but really not needed. I’d go with 4x cards + rules and then make the board(s) available separately and/or as a playmat. Use the 2 core decklists from DTDB or others that really show off the movement/chess and shootout tricks of DTR.


Language…language…language…oh …and did I mention language? For me this was the biggest problem with the game. The approach to the wording on cards, especially with the base set, was haphazard. I remember when the game first came out that not all the cards were even proofread. I also feel they made cards overly complicated instead of slowly building up from the basics of the game. Other than that… I loved the game and will continue to play it. Hopefully we’ll get the last batch of errated cards. :wink:

The 2x was fortunately better than what FFG has done with their LCGs. You will usually need 3x of a core set from them, just to get up to 3x copies of some cards because there is only one in each box. I was happy we didn’t have to buy 3x of this core set. They offer very few Alt Art cards, so there is even less of a way to “fill” in the gaps without needing to buy more core sets.

I’d be happy if these games would get it together and sell ONE core box with all the cards. I know a core price of $50 would be a little intimidating, but only being a few cards short of 3x is pretty annoying.

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To me the main mistake was to change the game to accelerate the pace too much, in classic you had a few turns for setup and build a strategy. with the new economy and the actions that are always usable, it killed that setup period.
Also DT used to be played mostly with 3-4 players which has a very different feel.

Then there are a rule changes that killed some aspects, Harroweds used to be strong, now it is just overpriced (base version avie cline !).

The base set is very unbalanced when it comes to dudes, 4R is overpriced.
Then obviously there were the rulings problems, at no point should a member from the rules team answer a question before conferring with at least 2 other members and a 24hours wait period.

I really wanted a premium set but only for the chips and gr. If they had sold those separately from a starter and a completer for the starter I would have been happier.

As far as game play, many original players saw landslide coming, and it still happened. More could have been done there. Also, raw rulings getting reversed by the end of the week, or faq’s that changed cards to make even less sense (dudes kidnapping themselves) but I understand the difficulty.

The true guilty party is AEG not promoting, marketing, or caring much at all about a game so many love passionately. If they had shown us a bit more love, we would have returned it a dozen fold.


Better interaction with game stores would’ve been great


I write in the name of my meta in Paris (France) (well we know that our meta isn’t top priority of AEG but may help ?):

The main issues here were:

  • the rulebook: many people aren’t so good in english here, and the language used for DTR + english + rulebook form was a bit too much for many LCG players here.
  • some decks killed the meta too early and the growing of the playerbase here: landslide + clown control overrun the board at the first tournament here. Some players allready stopped the game and bought 40k…
  • there were a bit too much problem on some lexical and grammatical card text from the core set. The replacement for free in the saddlebag was cool, but the damages were allready done.

Well, I don’t thinkthat was a big problem for the game. Here, it was difficult to seduce people with a game of western gunfighting and magics as it isn’t our culture so the main theme of the game was allready a trouble to build a great community in France, so maybe do not take these comments straight to the point.
But a major issue for me as an organizer was that there was little, if not promotion around the game and no real support except for those allready interested for the game that came tothe forum and the fansites.
In fact here in our local stores, people that do not play Doomtown just doesn’t know DTR… “oh DTR? Hum that game they play in the bottom corner of the store? well it’s a LCG right? or Maybe it’s CCG? It’s about cowboys and indians right? Well maybe? …”
In those days were a game like Game of Thrones doesn’t even need to be good (well I love that game to, no offense) to have a big playerbase, just cause it’s name refered to a tv-movie (based on novels but some ppl doesn’t even care): you have to promote your game .
That’s a point were AEG needed to be more effective in my point of view.


Lots of good points. I never became even remotely disenfranchised with the game, but speaking with those who did at the recent Outlaw tourney mostly revealed the frustration with rulings, like Mugging, Nathan Shane, Jia Mein exp, etc. The recent announcement from AEG didn’t seem to affect them - they felt the damage had already been done and it was too late to fix things now.

Overall, considering how insanely complicated it is to create a fun, well balanced card game, I think they did a lot really well. The Deadlands setting is not something most people have heard of or even care about, so that was always an uphill battle, but the fact that poker is integrated into the game can help to draw new people in. That’s usually what I focus on during my 30-second-elevator-speech explanation of the game. Aspects of chess + poker + some familiar aspects of magic the gathering can really get people excited.

And it still can! The game is at a very awesome spot, balance wise, and considering prices for getting into the game will likely drop quite a bit (already saw that sale for 40% off all doomtown products) it’s a great time for new folks to get into the game.


Focusing on introducing new mechanics (blessed), as a bigger chunk of the intro set would have been great.

As others have said, the rules were rough to start, though that First Turn in Gomorra has got to be my favorite part of the core set.

As for the boards, I actually loved having them, and would highly recommend keeping them as training wheels for new players.

Well, I came late to the party. I never played the original game, and didn’t experience the initial wave of promotion and regional tournaments. By the time I sat down at my local store, people would stop by the table and say “Oh, Doomtown Reloaded. That was a cool game. I didn’t know anyone still played it.”

In hindsight, I think I picked it up right around when AEG started to taper off support. Coincidentally (or not), I transitioned over to DT:R when L5R was discontinued, which was my long-standing game of choice. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, many of my friends were so disillusioned with AEG for the handling of L5R that they straight up boycotted Doomtown.

In short, I think Doomtown Reloaded suffered more administratively than it did mechanically.



Op prizes advertised on main site

Learn to play videos.


Yeah marketing mostly we all agree on this

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I was always frustrated that the wording from card to card was not consistent, and it seemed that it was up to us to figure out what the hell was going on with the cards by asking for clarifications on the forums. The rules team even went so far to try to fix the game after it was released by re-writing the rules and re-defining the timing structure twice.
For some reason it seemed the team that started the project wasn’t the same team that had to deal with it as things went along. Like it wasn’t exactly ready for release just yet.
It wasn’t bullet proof and just didn’t seem quite polished enough. Despite all that though, what was created was truly special and unique.


At times there felt like there was some disconnect between Rules and Design. I don’t think either really did a bad job, just the right arm not always working with the left.


Oh have the release dates announced and have the product in stores before said release date would be nice

Not yet. October is the last one, Blood Moon Rising. We have A Grand Entrance some time this week.