If you're not sure please read the post!
The key word here is INTERESTED. This isn't a commitment or a planning thread; I'm just trying to gauge interest. If you don't know what VASSAL is, it's an engine for running board game modules, and bj_o created one a while back. This is the new thread
. A campaign or cumulative game is simply a game where the game expands by spending gold to acquire new stuff, though complicated rulesets can add to the epic nature of the games.
I completely understand that a lot of people haven't looked at it much yet, and/or haven't played a game on it yet. It's always good to start small and build up from there. However, the potential of VASSAL is huge. Since games can be saved and sent to people, a campaign game on VASSAL is only limited by how much time someone has. The usual reasons for the end of campaign games (going off to school, other major commitments/life goals, etc.) get thrown out the window.
Now, ANY campaign game is daunting. I know this better than anyone.
HOWEVER, I'd like to point out some reasons why a campaign game on VASSAL would actually be EASIER in a lot of ways.
1. You don't have to get out ships. (When launching things often, it's rather annoying to have to go and get ships all the time)
2. There aren't any time constraints - like I said before, the usual time limits of campaign games are severely lessened in a virtual setting.
3. No sitting on the floor in a painful position or having to get into and out of a chair all the time - everything is on the screen. Also, since you'd be on a computer while playing, you could easily get MT up to look up game pieces for their stats and whatnot.
4. No space constraints - the size of a table or floor can limit a player's desire to see a huge game, and it can hamper mobility during the game. I've already experimented with the "Build your own" ocean option and it's essentially limitless how big the ocean could be.
I've also thought about the possibility of team playing or a sort of "drop-in" playing. For people that have less time for playing, this could be an option. Two people could form a team where they control the same fleet but play at different times. Also, if a player didn't have the time to commit to a campaign game, they could play occasionally to get the feel of how a campaign game plays and works. When playing, El Cazador and I discussed the potential for simultaneous playing, where people do things at the same time as long as no combat is involved.
My game with El Cazador on Friday took only about an hour in terms of the gameplay. This is about normal for a 40 point game, though of course we veterans can generally do it in much less time if we want to. (I generally find that rushing makes the game less enjoyable.) The setup did take about an hour, but that's mostly because we spent ~15 minutes figuring out how to set up an ocean, and then extra time setting up fleets and the sea since neither of us had almost ANY experience with VASSAL. As a result, once the campaign game starts, it wouldn't require a huge amount of time. I would estimate that for a while the game would only take between 1-4 hours per week (not a big commitment!); if it reached a giant size (for example over 2,000 points!) things might take longer, but maybe not. Once you get comfortable with the module's controls (it doesn't take long, as myself and El Cazador can attest), things go quicker, so it's entirely possible that as the game size expands and play theoretically goes slower, it wouldn't slow down too much because the players would be getting faster and faster with the controls and shortcuts.
Some notes about the ocean setup: Yesterday I was playing around with the ocean setup a bit. When you select "Build your own", you have the option of creating as many rows or columns as you like, where each one is represented by one of five options: Ocean 1 (the familiar blue ocean), corner, sides, top-bottom, and Hex Ocean. I figured that the default ocean (when you don't build your own) would be a few tiles or squares wide, but it's actually only 1!
This is great news, because it means that as soon as you start adding rows or columns, the ocean rapidly expands! I did a 3x3 experiment just now and the ocean is quite large. I also tried making the sides thicker on one side, which would be a non-play area for deckplates to go. It worked to some extent, but it also produced a mysterious white chunk on the opposite side beyond the play area.
I did some experimenting with very strange oceans - adding some "sides" jutting out from the middle, adding corners and tops in random places, etc. I was trying to simulate the effect of having two tables with a smaller barrier in the center (similar to xerecs' Economy Edition game). This worked reasonably well, but there was a mystery ocean chunk off to the bottom (in the case of a horizontal barrier) or the right side (in the case of a vertical barrier). I might make a post with pictures to help make it easier to visualize. Unfortunately, making relatively "random" oceans didn't really work - at first it looks cool, but when you start scrolling or dragging things, the screen glitches a bit and it would probably be impossible to play with. It is fun to mess around with.
Hopefully you're interested! It would be a blast!