Long story short, I played the card game called Revolver. I liked the general idea, but I did not like the details. I thought I can do better and based on the general concept of moving cards from one location to another towards the final city I designed Convoy. Asymmetric decks, a ton of special powers, true gamer’s game packed into 70 cards. I was pretty proud of it.

We released the game and it was a flop. Barely we managed to sell the first print of Polish and English edition. German copies still, like 8 years later, can be found in forgotten corners of our warehouse. My whole team, with me in the first place was more or less thinking What the hell just happened. Why the game is not popular?!

Years passed. Portal Games grew. Neuroshima Hex became more popular, our distribution channels were so much better. I decided we’ll give Convoy second chance.

We redesigned the cover and the whole layout. We rewrote the whole rulebook. We removed from cards stupid icons and replaced them with clear text. The whole game got the same approach like our reskinning 51st State into Imperial Settlers. Better rules, better components, better everything. We just stayed with the theme. Rest was improved.

I think it was 2016, but I might be wrong. We were the proud sponsor of BGGcon in Dallas and we decided to fund 1000 brand new copies of Convoy – which was just released in Essen a few weeks earlier – as a free gift to 1000 attendees.

I thought people will play, like it and help us promote the game.

***

Well. Long story, short, Convoy second edition is as dead as the first one. We don’t do a reprint, barely we managed to sell the first print.

The question remains. What the hell is wrong with this game?

***

I sincerely, I honestly, I wholeheartedly believe this is the awesome card game. I love it. I love the asymmetrical aspect. I love the tension. I love the replayability. There is a bluff. There are combos. There are two very unique decks. There is everything the good card game should have.

And yet, the game is dead.

***

I played Convoy again this past weekend. I had fun as I always have with the game. I played The Outpost deck and I destroyed Merry. We finished the game. I packed the cards and all I could think of was ‘What the hell went wrong with this game? Why? Why nobody likes it?!’

***

So it is time for the honest hour. Tell me, why? We don’t plan to reprint it anymore. I tried twice, it was disaster twice, I am not going to lose money for the third time. We can be honest and painfully transparent.

What the hell? Why don’t you like Convoy?!


Originally posted on BTTS Blog on BGG Forum: https://boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/75807/honest-question-confused-designer

5 Comments Added

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  1. Paweł 2018-08-23 | Reply

    Z całym szacunkiem dla Pana Ignacego chyba coś nie poszło przy testach w grze leży balans …. z upartością dawałem grze kolejne szanse … “kombogenność” Posterunku miażdży Molocha ….

  2. Spencer Palmer 2018-06-27 | Reply

    I like Neuroshima Convoy. I only played the 2nd edition. I’m a big fan of Neuroshima Hex. I’d play it more often, but my primary gaming partner isn’t a big fan of asymmetrical games.

    I looked through comments on BGG, and one of the trends was theme. If there was something more mainstream, it may have more success.

    What if it had a Star Wars theme? I know Fantasy Flight Games has a lot of Star Wars games. Perhaps a collaboration could lead to success? Kickstarter release?

  3. sasha louis vukovic 2018-06-26 | Reply

    Ignacy. This game. Is the best THEMATIC small two player card game on the market.
    There are fans out here. Whenever I introduce the game to anyone, I say it is like “terminator’ or ‘the matrix’ and immediately they are interested. They pick a side in two seconds. The rules are so simple to teach. I have never, ever had this game fail. I am a huge supporter of your designs. And this game is so, so excellent. Maybe it is the title, Neuroshima Convoy… people who don’t play Neuroshima Hex don’t know how to approach it? Either way. Man vs. Machine is brillaint. and each card is so Thematic. I rank this game near Corey Konieczka’s work on Space Hulk: Death Angel (from fantasy flight). SO, SO Brilliantly thematic. Amazingly so, for such a tiny game, with such a small footprint. And whenever I introduce that game to anyone, I always say… it’s Alien… the BEST Alien survival game ever designed. I think you have the same thing here with Neuroshima Convoy. The Best Human vs. Robot game ever designed. I rank it next to Lord of the Rings: Confrontation. Never give up on this gem! And thank you for producing the beautiful new edition.

  4. Peter 2018-05-05 | Reply

    Same question you can ask about Theseus …

  5. SV 2018-04-27 | Reply

    Honestly, this is the first time I am hearing about this game. I am peripherally aware of the Neuroshima Hex IP but I never obtained any of your games. As far as your original version of your game, I think it might have been lost in the shuffle of my awareness. As far as your marketing goes, I think you were smart to try to use BBGcon as a tool to “virally” spread your game as they are mostly first movers. I’ve found, as a vendor at that con, the people who go there are extremely picky and critical of games, for better or worse, and your game might have been lost in the shuffle.

    Apart from the general marketing, I think your audience might have been swallowed up by the Magic the Gathering juggernaut and secondarily (far down from the first reason) is Android: Netrunner which came out around the same time. From my anecdotal evidence, people are very picky about two player-only games and are very much creatures of habit. I am not sure what your original MSRP was, but, currently your original game is listed at $39.99 on Amazon. To me, that is cost prohibitive for a card game. The Neuroshima: Convoy seems to be more in my range and I would take a flier on getting that game.

    Have you thought about using services like board game bento or game box monthly? I know those companies usually send out games that are about your size and you might be able to clear out some inventory.

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