Postby gattz » Mon Dec 06, 2021 10:58 pm
I'd say the flow and complexity of both games is similar. P28 and SoBH both seem easy to pick up, play, and teach. The rules don't need much referencing outside of a few little things you might forget during your first game. That applies to most game systems though so it's not a big worry.
I'm honestly not the biggest fan of the basic SoBH rules personally, so I might be a little biased. I think in terms of character creation I enjoyed P28 more because my characters felt more "characterful." I think that while, SoBH has more options to customize a unit (MUCH more if you include all of the expansion content), that none of them really feel like individuals. From my experience in that game, they felt like slightly tweaked troops. I think that while P28 has fewer options to pick from in the core rules, that those options are generally more powerful and impact the game or unit more in a flavorful way.
For instance, my Magister Yado had some traits like Fast Moving and Climber. It was intended to make sure that he was maneuverable on the ground and take advantage of the vertical planes because his only weapon was a melee power sword. He also had arcane abilities (mind control, "throw" which was like a force push, and one to cause fear). Then, during gameplay due to movement rules/height differential rules/armor rolls/contested rolls it makes that character a bit more difficult to kill because you don't want them to die instantly. I don't feel like the few times I've tried SoBH I've had an attachment to a particular trooper in the same way. They just didn't feel differentiated *enough* to me for some reason.
Another thing is the feel (possibly illusion) of control. I really dislike the roll-to-activate of SoBH. It's my biggest beef with that game. Just to do *anything* you're playing with luck and mitigation. Those turns when you roll poorly and your character stands there like a statue is a peeve. In P28 (or Brutal Quest), you're guaranteed to have a turn. It's taken in a mostly pre-set initiative based on your Agility stat. If you REALLY want to go first, then during your character creation you need to prioritize your points and boost that stat. But if you don't get that, at least there is something like the armor rolls where you feel like, "well those points I instead spent on good armor for this slow guy can at least save me if I'm slow to activate." I mentioned illusion because in these types of games dice always come in to play somehow; just not in an immediately unsatisfying way as those failed activation rolls in SoBH.
If you were to scale up to a more massive skirmish level, let's say 12 models per side, I do think SoBH would play much faster because of some of those previously mentioned reasons. 3-6 models per side might be the sweet spot for P28, unless you just make a lot of grunt characters with no equipment or abilities.
In any case, I think it's worth giving a shot. Undoubtedly there would be a lot of fun, even for younger players, to be had. The rulebook is also <20 pages. The expansion content (vehicles/solo-coop) are both very short as well and add some fun options without overwhelming you.