A Shadowrun: Crossfire diversion


I’ve really been struggling with Shadowrun: Crossfire. I love the theme to death and the mechanics work nicely. There’s just something off about it. For one thing, it’s punishingly hard; I’ve played 8 times and lost every single one. It doesn’t seem to matter whether I’m playing single player, two player or three. (Haven’t tried four yet.) The best progress I’ve made was playing four runners solo.

I’ve been toying with the idea of reworking the game. I’m leaning towards tweaking solo play specifically, but with a mind to address multiplayer as appropriate. Tonight provided an opportunity to start playing with the mechanics; unfortunately, I made very little progress. My biggest learning was perhaps that this will be a very heady endeavor and will require an alert mind, lots of time, and lots of playtesting

Contrast this with Friday. I had a second go at Friday after toying with Shadowrun. (-42 this time!) The mechanics in Friday feel thoroughly playtested. Shadowrun: Crossfire, on the other hand, feels unbalanced and unfinished. Shadowrun: Crossfire seems to rely very heavily on theme to compensate for its shortcomings, whereas Friday works beautifully in spite of its theme.

I’m honestly not even sure if I want to continue giving any time or effort to Shadowrun: Crossfire. I’m attracted to the challenge of making it into a great game, but there are also a lot of things fighting for my time. Realistically I’ll probably let it sit for a while then make another call to sell or improve it.  I imagine this is what most gamers must go through when they invest in a game that they end up not liking.  My thoughts on The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game (the LCG) are similar so far… I’ll write about that soon.