I don't recall seeing information this concrete on the upcoming Warzone Collectable Miniatures Game. My apologies if it's been posted before...
from Fantasy Flight staffer Greg:
In 2006, FFG will release its first miniatures game, a CMG based on the classic Mutant Chronicles universe. For those who aren’t familiar with it, Mutant Chronicles was created in the early 90s and eventually gave birth to a miniatures game, roleplaying game, and two different CCGs. Now, a film project is in the works and FFG is helping to relaunch this great property with the release of a collectible miniatures game. Mutant Chronicles is set in the far future of our own solar system, where Megacorporations battle each other as well as a dark invader. Power-armored doom troopers, magic, and monsters mix in this exciting dark future space-fantasy setting.
As this is our first miniatures game, we aren’t holding anything back. The figures will be in 36mm scale, with the most detailed sculpts and painting we can give them. The game system itself will be refreshing and innovative, as we’ve taken a lot of the tedium and bookkeeping out of both army building and game play. The game is fast and fun, with all of the strategic depth and thematic immersion you’ve come to expect from FFG games. Expect the initial release, featuring a deluxe two-player starter set and standard booster boxes, in October of this year. We also hope to have lots of cool stuff to preview at GenCon later this year.
from designer Eric Lang:
As we speak, I'm on my second to last day of Mutant Chroncles CMG design, getting ready to hand it over to development for polish and preparation for production. The game design has been finished for about a month or so, giving me ample time to tweak this thing to a shiny perfection. I'm really happy with the game; it's simple enough that most non-hardcore gamers should have no trouble picking up the basics, but tactically "chewy" enough that it will give pause to any old school casual dismissal.
There are three modes of play for this game: skirmish, tournament, and epic. Skirmish is so compact you could play it just about anywhere (I was about to say you could play it on a plane ... but maybe not quite *that* compact!). It's the perfect way to learn the game, or just test out some of your new units in practical combat. Tournament is the standard way most people will play; games take just under an hour (less for experienced players, but not for slowpokes like me) with lots of rich decisions to make at every turn. Epic is crazy; this game scales well enough that you could cover a huge table in terrain and just go nuts with a big chunk of your collection. The coolest part is that there are very few rules changes between formats ... just a few numbers tweaks.
As with many games, you can play standard or scenario, although the standard game has a small but intuitive twist on the usual "kill 'em" victory condition ... and it's a variable enough experience that I suspect quite a few players will never even feel the need to play a scenario in their lifetime. For the more creatively inclined, I've worked out a ridiculously simple foundation to build scenarios on ... anyone can make one.
I can't talk too much about the game mechanics at this point, but suffice it to say that most who have played the game seem to feel that this game is almost as simple as it can be (from a comprehensive standpoint), but really tough tactically. You have a lot of control over the flow of the game, mainly because there is a heavy resource management element to it. But fret not! Even for all of its twists, this is a miniature game at heart. Those of you who want to collect cool pre-painted guys and expect a miniature game style experience, it's here.
A fresh take on familiar territory. I can't wait until you all get a chance to play it.
from Nate, FFG staffer:
For my second rant I’d like to share with you a completely unanticipated but surprisingly rewarding aspect of my new job here at FFG: the writing of art descriptions.
“What is an art description?” you ask. Well, it’s basically a paragraph or so of text that we send out to an artist telling him or her what the art should represent and how it should look, function, and/or feel. “Sounds easy… maybe even a little fun,” you might be thinking. Well, it is… at first. The challenge comes when you’re doing art descriptions for a collectible game, with 100’s of moving parts that all need their own piece of artwork, and you're working on a deadline.
Two weeks ago, I didn’t even know what an art description was. Now, after writing all of the descrips for the Mutant Chronicles CMG base set, and about 150 of the little buggers for the new Iron Throne Edition AGoT CCG base set, I feel like a seasoned pro. There’re about 5 more cards on my docket that still need descrips, and at this point they’re looking like the last 100 meters of a 10K, but I’m also seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and feeling a tremendous sense of accomplishment. Not only have I immersed myself in the Mutant Chronicles source material and refreshed my appreciation of George R.R. Martin’s ASOIAF, I’ve also taken my mind through the rigors of almost 300 writerly “push-ups,” and, as a by-product of all this, contributed to the final vision of both of these games. Not bad for a week and a half of work!
Just to give you a better taste of what an art description is all about, and whet your appetites for what Mutant Chronicles CMG and the Iron Throne edition of the AGoT CCG have to offer, I’d like to share a few sample art descriptions.
Let’s start with the new game, and take a look at the Bio-Giant:
“Bio Giants are hideous amalgamations of flesh and plant sinew. They resemble giant, war scarred humanoids, with flesh covered in a patchwork of stitches and sutures with great spikes protruding from their body. This is a double hexed figure, so the giant will have to be taking a long stride forward and leaning down for an attack...”
There are a couple things going on in this description. One is that it’s giving the artist a basic vision of what the piece is going to look like. This is a little bit trickier than it sounds, however, as you want to give the artist a description without giving him a prescription. We want the artistic vision that our best artists can provide to shine through in their final work, and instead of shackling that vision, a good art description simply inspires it. The second thing this description does is point out a game-related issue, the size and shape of the piece’s figure, and explains how the art will need to fit into the game.
Here’s another Mutant Chronicles art description:
“Golgotha is nicknamed the Mistress of Pain. She stands 9 feet tall with a brutish yet feminine body. Her skin is eerily pale, and it suggests both Bauhaus nobility and diseased death. Golgotha dresses in a way that emphasizes both her physical musculature and her femininity. Her preferred weapon is the claw, and she fights with two versions: the Necrotech Claw (an enhanced mandible attached to one of her hands) and the Carcass Claws, huge tentacle like appendages that encircle Golgotha, protruding from her back (think Doctor Octopus, but worse) and able to embrace and draw in nearby enemy units.”
Golgotha is a specific, iconic figure in the MC universe. This description, thanks to my time spent reviewing the source material, provides the artist with a number of details that will allow a successful re-imagining of that material. The parenthetical “(think Doctor Octopus but worse)” is another trick of the art description trade: the familiar point of reference. Grabbing a point of reference (in this case Doctor Octopus) and twisting it (but worse!) is an excellent means of building a bridge between the vision in my head and the spark that will inspire and motivate and guide an artist at the other end of the description. As I pointed out before, it’s amazing what you learn doing 300 of these things!
from FFG staffer Dan:
We've also got some dynamite sketches in for Mutant Chronicles. I wish I could show you guys, but as sweet as they are, they're just not sweet ENOUGH yet. We're going to keep working on the look of this game until it sparkles as much as the gameplay already does. And by the way - the gameplay is tight. Our graphics department (resident miniatures fanatics) can't seem to stop playing it, and that's with commandeered Doom minis. Imagine what they'll do once some of Nate's art descriptions come to life in 3-d?
A Partnership with Paradox Entertainment for their First Collectible Miniatures Game
The Mutant Chronicles Collectible Miniatures Game represents FFG's first foray into collectible miniatures games (CMGs). FFG has a reputation for high-quality components in all its games, including high-quality models for such releases as World of Warcraft: the Board Game and Descent: Journeys in the Dark. FFG has also released two very successful Collectible Card Games (CCGs), A Game of Thrones and Call of Cthulhu. Both CCGs, as well as Mutant Chronicles, are designed by multiple award-winning game designer Eric Lang. Mutant Chronicles will feature the innovative new mechanics and fresh look at genres that have become Lang's hallmark.
Mutant Chronicles will feature highly-anticipated tournament support, similar to the successful systems in place for both A Game of Thrones and Call of Cthulhu, including worldwide National Championships and a World Championship at GenCon.
"FFG's fresh, original approach to existing game categories has made this game a joy to work on," said Eric Lang, lead designer. "I expect this game to play like no other miniatures game around."
"Mutant Chronicles is a grand, epic science fiction universe which will resurface in comic books, film and video games. We are especially happy to work with Fantasy Flight because it brings us back to the roots of how the story began, and gamers all around the world will appreciate the passion that FFG shows for the project," said Fredrik Malmberg, Head of Licensing and Creative Affairs at Paradox Entertainment.
Mutant Chronicles will initially feature the Bauhaus, Brotherhood and Capitol factions, as well as the Dark Legion factions Algeroth and Ilian. The pre-painted miniatures will be available in fixed-selection starter boxes as well as randomly-assorted boosters. Mutant Chronicles figures will be in 36 mm scale, and each booster pack will include an oversize figure.
Mutant Chronicles debuted as a roleplaying game in 1993, and was quickly followed by a board game, CCG and a traditional miniatures wargame. The Mutant Chronicles universe details a far-future setting in which corporate-dominated humanity battles against the hellish might of the Dark Legion with cybernetics, advanced weaponry and the form of magic known as the Art.
Mutant Chronicles is licensed from Paradox Entertainment, a specialized and focused character-based entertainment company operating in Los Angeles, California. Paradox Entertainment's mission is to provide the market with fantasy, science-fiction and horror entertainment and consumer product licenses.
Considering how well FFG's DOOM boardgame miniatures turned out, I'm looking forward to these.