Jericho Reach: Season 2 Q&A

Hey gang, Jon from War Budgies here, celebrating the closing ceremonies of our Warcaster narrative campaign: Jericho Reach, Season 2. In between sips of the finest champagne a small YouTube channel can buy (Sprite counts, right?) I asked the community to send in some questions about Warcaster, Jericho Reach, or War Budgies in general. 

The full Q&A video will be up soon on the War Budgies channel, but I picked a few of my favorites to talk about below. Enjoy, and see you guys next year for Season 3!

What surprised you the most about this season?

You guys did, seriously. The amount of support from the community, the number of battle report submissions, and the enthusiasm you guys showed has been amazing. In a game sense, the way the Marchers turned out in force for this campaign was fantastic, they were churning out games like champs every week, and they definitely earned the overall victory.

Hands down, my favorite part of this whole experience was getting to see all the pictures you guys sent in of the games you were playing. That was truly satisfying and I thank you all for it.

The locals put up a good fight holding their reach

What are your favorite heroes and models in the game?

Artemis Fang takes the top slot, I think. Fantastic model, great rules, and just a ton of fun to run around and John Woo your enemies into oblivion. I’ll give a second place spot to Harlan Sek, for being the only hero to show up properly prepared in a sealed environmental suit. I bet that man wears suspenders with a belt, he’s ready for anything.

Non-hero, I have such a deep fondness for the ISA Firebrand, classic sword-and-shield. It was the first Warcaster model I put together, and I immediately loved the aesthetic of it. Fast forward a couple years and here we are.

What is something people might not know about creating a narrative campaign?

It’s a lot of work! For an hour long video, there’s several days that go into it, from the storyline scripting, setting up the tables, filming, editing, and all. I typically work on the videos in my evenings after I get off work, one episode is filmed and assembled over the course of several days. In some videos, you might notice my energy level spike up in the middle of the report, that’s because I put the camera down and resumed the next day.

This is also why Jericho Reach has so far been Skirmish-level, as that’s a manageable size to get done in less than a week of bits-and-pieces work. Doing full battle force videos would require at least another day, I imagine, just for filming. That said, I do plan on doing some larger size battles for Season 3, once the miniature collection catches up and I have more time on my hands.

The judgement of the Lawgiver

How do you create a narrative campaign that is progression-neutral, so the story moves forward regardless of the battle result?

That’s a tricky one, and if you’ve tried to build one of these for your local store, you know what I mean. You can’t make the stakes too high, or the story is going to hit certain blocks it can’t pass. For instance, if the ISA successfully contained the Empyreans in Episode 1 of this season…then there wouldn’t be any other episodes. 

On the other hand, you can’t have no stakes at all, or it feels like the battles don’t mean anything.

So my advice is to make the stakes at the tactical level, rather than the story level. For instance, in the last half of Season 2, we had battles where the AC and the Marchers each had a chance to send reinforcements to help Taria. If they won, they sent 4 DC worth of support, and if they lost, it was 2 DC. This way if they both failed, they still contributed to the story.

Why is the Aeternus Continuum the true savior of humanity?

Get out of here, Avarice. How are you even typing with no arms?

The dangers below Jericho Reach

What is next for Jericho Reach? Will there be a Season 3?

Well, you sly devil, as you guessed from the intro paragraph, there will be a Season 3. I’ve already started some early planning and sketching out the storyline and scenarios, but there’s a twist: it won’t be until late 2023. The reason for this is very exciting: my wife and I are moving to Alaska next year! Which means it’ll take time to move, find a house, get a studio set up, and so forth. 

When we do Season 3, it will also be a global campaign in a similar format, so this is lots of notice in advance for you to have your armies ready! Hopefully in the new studio space we can up the scale a bit, so while Jericho Reach itself will feature in the campaign, the campaign itself is not going to be confined to the Reach. We’re going a bit…bigger.

So big stuff is coming down the line, both for Warcaster and other games I want to cover (*gives Warmachine the side eye*) but it may be a while before that happens. Til then, keep an eye out for some smaller scale videos to tide you over, and get out there and play some Warcaster!

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