Thanks so much for taking the time to try out Beat to Quarters and to feature it in your podcast. I really appreciated the time you took to try out the game and explore the system. Reviews are like oxygen to small press publishers (and great reviews are even better!
) so its brilliant to see.
The stuff you mentioned about your eventual engagement with the system was spot on. The pre-game brainstorming part is supposed to be very general rather than specific, a nudge from the players as to the things that are important in their stories. The challenges within a mission are indeed, supposed to emerge during play rather than be defined beforehand and hence that's why you shouldn't be able to 'solo' the game with just the cards and you. Oh and the cards=gentlemen, dice=cads thing? That is the exact reasoning and I never knew that Castle Falkenstein shared it!
I was especially thrilled that you spotted the literary emulation aspect of it rather than a straight historical text. I was listening to the review during a revision class and my students were laughing at the cheesy grin that appeared in that bit.
Thanks again, and I'll repay the favour by pimping the podcast out as far as I can.
God Save the King!