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Attack of the 50 Foot Colossi! $10.00
Publisher: Tiny Battle Publishing
by Stephan B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/14/2019 07:25:12

(Updated 2019-09-14 to reflect updated PDFs by the publisher.)

On September 12, 2019, the publisher updated the PDFs to address several fatal shortcomings which made print-and-play unfeasible (detailed in an earlier version of this review):

1) Counters now have a consumer-friendly paper size: both US Letter and the original "Arch A" are now provided.

2) Counters now have grid lines: this makes assembly after printing less of a hit-and-miss proposition.

3) Printer-friendly Rulebook and Player Aid Card: the "noisy" backgrounds have been removed (the originals are also still available).

4) The 8.5x11-inch map PDFs now have some margin, so they won't be truncated when printing on consumer-grade printers. Unfortunately, this means that there is no graphics overlap at all for the two halves of the 8.5x11-inch map sheets, but the 11x17-inch copies are still available, for those who have a compatible printer or print them via a professional service.

With that, my review is changed from 1 star to 5.


(What follows is the review from before the publisher addressed the shortcomings described above...)

i unfortuantely have to give THE DIGITAL EDITION (only) of this game an extremely poor rating. i bought this as part of the Bundle of Holding's "War on Everything" bundle, along with the sister titles in this game's series (Invaders from Dimension X and Space Vermin from Beyond). i'm sure the physical copy is just fine, but as a print-and-play title, it has several fatal problems:

1) The counters use "Arch A" paper size, which is a US-only 9x12 inch format (229 × 305mm). Printing these counters on standard paper sizes (namely A4), within margin the limits of consumer printers, requires shrinking the counters even smaller than the 1/2x1/2(?) inches they are now. To get them printed at the intended size requires extracting the graphics from the PDF, splitting the graphics in half, then printing them across two pages (which complicates assembly of the dual-sided counters).

2) The counters are laid out such that they all fit on one page which "could" be folded in half to line up the fronts and backs of the counters... but there are no lines for such alignment, neither around the counters, along the edges of the graphics, nor between the two halves of the page. Folding them properly into place once there's a piece of cardstock between the two halves is an exercise in futility. There are no borders between the counters and the margin for folding errors is extremely tiny.

3) For PnP purposes, parts like the rulebook and "Player Aid" really need to have their noisy backgrounds removed (ideally two copies: one with and one without such a background). Those waste precious printer toner and they hurt legibility unless one prints at 600DPI or higher. The rulebook, in particular, with black text on a "muddy grey" background, is barely legible on the screen or printed on a consumer-grade printer.

4) The map PDFs are laid out all the way to the edge of the paper. Most consumer-grade laser printers cannot print all the way to the edge of the paper. The 11x17-inch map could, if one has a printer capable of handling that size, be printed with the truncated margins without breaking the map. The more consumer-friendly 8.5x11-inch map file is set up such that one would need to truncate "required" edges of the maps. There is some overlap in the two halves of each map, but it's impossible to say, without printing it out, whether that overlap is enough to account for truncation by a printer which cannot print all the way to the edge of the paper. The moral here is that laying out graphics all the way to the edge of the paper is an absolute no-no for consumer-grade PnP purposes.

@Publisher: no game should be released for PnP until/unless the publisher has actually attempted to print, assemble, and play the title as a home consumer would (this means, for example, without access to non-standard paper sizes and with a limited printer toner budget). This title, in its current PnP form, cannot be reasonably assembled and is therefore unplayable.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Attack of the 50 Foot Colossi!
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