Insider 6/23/2010

I just completed my final proofing pass over the final round of Mk II HORDES cards.

Sure, I’ll still have some lingering responsibilities related to the Forces of HORDES books that haven’t gone to print yet, but now seems as good a time as any for a bit of a Mk II retrospective.

Milestone 1 – September 2008

My personal Mk II journey really began in September 2008. Granted, I had mused on the topic of Mk II plenty of times and had even discussed the possibilities with friends who played WARMACHINE and HORDES for a couple of years prior, but September 2008 was the true start of this journey for me. On the afternoon of my first day here at Privateer Press, Jason Soles pulled me aside and let me know the current direction for WARMACHINE and HORDES development – Mk II.

My mind reeled with the impact of the news, and I got that giddy Christmas-morning feeling. I tore through the current versions of the Mk II game rules and model rules like I was ripping open the wrapping paper of every present under the tree, and I was immediately thrown right into the heart of Mk II internal playtesting due to my role as Playtest Coordinator.

Milestone 2 – March 2009

The second major milestone had to be the announcement of the Mk II field test. Internal playtesting for Mk II was all well and good, but packing seven years of development work into a little over a year was going to require something new, something special, something formed from the stuff of nightmares and given substance by the darkest magics known to mankind.

Many of you took the opportunity the Field Test presented to share your thoughts with us, and we got a ton of great feedback. We also got tons of not-so-great feedback, some frightening assassinations of game development sensibility, and even a couple of death threats.

Milestone 3 – January 2010

Towards the end of January, I sent off my last e-mail to Jason regarding the Field Test feedback. I had finished reading approximately 20,000 reports. I had finished organizing, making spreadsheets, and analyzing the pile of data those reports represented, and I had written my very last recommendation based on public feedback. It was over.

Don’t get me wrong; I fully believe the Field Test was an important and necessary step of the Mk II process. It was a valuable way to get extra eyes on massive volumes of rapid redevelopment, but I pray to all that is holy and unholy (I’m hedging my bets here) that I do not face another Field Test any time soon.

Milestone 4 – May 2010

In May, we wrapped up the last of our development efforts for the final model of the Mk II release. Internal playtesting and external playtesting fell into a deep and abiding calm, and all was—

Baaaahahahahaaa. Nope, couldn’t finish that sentence with a straight face even typing on a keyboard. We jumped straight into development efforts for the next new models to ensure the world of WARMACHINE and HORDES constantly offers something new and exciting to our players.

But that, my friends, wraps up my experience with the grand adventure known as the launch of WARMACHINE and HORDES Mk II!