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[Board Games] - Skynet defeats Korean guy in an abstract strategy game. The end is nigh.

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Posts

  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Arabian Nights would be way more frustrating if it were an actual competitive game, because then I'd be annoyed rather than charmed whenever I try to seduce a djinn and get turned into a sex-changed goat for my trouble.

    Super agree, it's pretty long as is but making it competitive would make it challenge Talisman length

    nobody needs that

  • AstaerethAstaereth In the belly of the beastRegistered User regular
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    ACsTqqK.jpg
    Magic Pink
  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Joe DizzyMrVyngaardSageinaRageGvzbgul
  • LykouraghLykouragh Registered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    Pandemic Legacy and War of the Ring are both games where I've seen a decision made that was a great story in itself, fit seamlessly into the theme of the game, and made perfect sense as a pragmatic game decision. I think it's rare to see this, but totally possible to do.

    antherem
  • antheremantherem Registered User regular
    Lykouragh wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    Pandemic Legacy and War of the Ring are both games where I've seen a decision made that was a great story in itself, fit seamlessly into the theme of the game, and made perfect sense as a pragmatic game decision. I think it's rare to see this, but totally possible to do.

    One of my favorite things about War of the Ring is how you can recount the game as a what-if tale of Frodo and Sam. (Rebellion works similarly for Star Wars.)

    InquisitorMagic Pink
  • LykouraghLykouragh Registered User regular
    antherem wrote: »
    Lykouragh wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    Pandemic Legacy and War of the Ring are both games where I've seen a decision made that was a great story in itself, fit seamlessly into the theme of the game, and made perfect sense as a pragmatic game decision. I think it's rare to see this, but totally possible to do.

    One of my favorite things about War of the Ring is how you can recount the game as a what-if tale of Frodo and Sam. (Rebellion works similarly for Star Wars.)

    Oh yeah, absolutely. Once upon a time Admiral Ackbar led a heroic raid to liberate Mon Calamari- but after the tides turned against him he was detained just long enough for Darth Vader to capture him. In the interrogation cells aboard the Death Star Ackbar was turned to the dark side of the Force- and then the Emperor ordered him to lead the reinvasion of his beloved homeworld.

    Poor Ackbar.

    antheremElvenshaemysticjuicerEl Mucho
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

  • jergarmarjergarmar inside your hollow manRegistered User regular
    The word "narrative" is ambiguous. The easiest games to point to are probably RPG-like games, such as Descent. You're literally acting out a story of a person fighting things and "winning" or "losing".

    Now, sometimes when people use it, they mean that a game has a distinct beginning, middle, and end. For example, exploration and resource-engine games tend to feel different at every stage of the game. If you play Eclipse, I can walk up to it and know where in the game you're at.

    Arabian Nights has little of any of these things. It's more like a "story trope generation engine". Once Upon a Time is very similar. The Crossroads cards from Dead of Winter probably fit into this category as well. The vast majority of the story that's told has no direct representation in the game mechanics. Resolving these elements often happens without even LOOKING at the game pieces. You make a decision, perhaps discuss it, and only then do you look down at the game and resolve the effects. The game creates a story, but it's not a "game narrative", if that makes any sense. Sometimes people say that it's an "experience game"; that the imaginative experience you have while playing is more important than the gameplay itself. This is not to disparage these games! But at the same time I am more likely to play these with friends and family, and less likely to bring them to a board game meetup.

    So yeah, I just wouldn't put Arabian Nights anywhere in the same category as War of the Ring. They each have a completely different type of "narrative". Which reminds me, some people who prefer Risk: Legacy over Pandemic: Legacy say that the story of the latter is more "directed" and thus feels less open-ended and interesting. That there are fewer possible end states of the game. But many people obviously love it for having a very strong story. I think it boils down to what you're looking for when you start playing.

    When I was a child, I had a fever...
    jswidget.php?username=jergarmar&numitems=7&text=none&images=small&show=hot10&imagesonly=1&imagepos=right&inline=1&domains%5B%5D=boardgame&imagewidget=1
    My BoardGameGeek profile
    Battle.net: TheGerm#1430 (Hearthstone, Destiny 2)
    mysticjuicer
  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    I do not agree with that statement.

    Albino BunnyadmanbAuralynxElvenshaeJoe DizzySageinaRageInfidelWolf of Dresden
  • RendRend Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    Dwarf fortress would like a word with you.

    InquisitorElvenshaeBrodyCaptainPeacockForarInfidel
  • AstaerethAstaereth In the belly of the beastRegistered User regular
    I think there's an important distinction to be made between emergent narrative and more directed, internal narrative. I can tell a story about a chess match: "I opened strong, but my opponent capitlized on a mistake, leaving me with one knight and not many more options. But after a tough mid-game I was able to brilliantly take his queen and engineer a checkmate." But that's not a story in the same way that Arabian Nights, Fairy Tale, or Gloom have stories.

    To the former category belong things like that new Empire vs Rebels Star Wars game, or the LotR card game story told here a few pages back. Story generation games are working on a very different level (and perhaps somewhere in the middle are games like Legendary Encounters or Pandemic Legacy, which feature mechanically variable play punctuated by programmed story events).

    It's this continuum that my post which began this tangent referred to, and specifically the way that you can map the "emergent versus directed" axis directly onto the "mechanics heavy versus light" axis. Chess is all mechanics and therefore no narrative (you can tell the story of a match but that story does not involve actual knights and clergymen doing battle); something like a Choose Your Own Adventure Book (or, say, Fairy Tale) is almost entirely narrative and almost no
    mechanics.

    Traditional narrative is defined by authorship; the more control the player has over the story, the less story there ends up being, and the more abstract and emergent the narrative becomes. A turn in Arabian Nights is a long, descriptive paragraph or two about a specific fictional scenario, with the player merely guiding the story by choosing her reaction and sometimes rolling a die. A turn in Pandemic Legacy is a functional set of mechanical choices like "go here, activate power, discard cards," actions which may have thematic analogues but are not really cohesive, narrativized story chunks. A turn in chess has no analogues at all, just mechanics.

    So I think it's clear that generally the trend exists, and exists for a reason, which is that specific, non-emergent narratives are fundamentally antithetical to player control, particularly when player choices are guided by mechanical, not story, reasons.

    ACsTqqK.jpg
    Magic Pink
  • I needed a gnome to post.I needed a gnome to post. Registered User regular
    edited August 2016
    I don't think they're at odds, but I do think that merging the two is staggeringly more difficult than just making one on their own.

    You have to be a good game designer to design a good game, and you have to be a good writer to make a good story. You have to, at the very minimum, be both to merge them both, and then on top of that you have to be good at merging the two for people to regard it well.

    I needed a gnome to post. on
    7UVunkN.jpg
    Magic PinkDelduwath
  • PMAversPMAvers Registered User regular
    nnnngh.

    Just noticed that CSI has pre-orders open for SW: Destiny... and I'm seriously considering going in for a booster box, after how much I dug the demo.

    Feel kind of dirty even thinking about random packs...

    persona4celestia.jpg
    COME FORTH, AMATERASU! - Switch Friend Code SW-5465-2458-5696 - Twitch
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    Just so you guys know, Captain Sonar isn't as fun as it looks.

    ...it's better.

    Our group of 8 included:

    4 board game addicts (counting myself), who are always up for new cardboard hotness
    1 guy who digs games and nerdiness in general, but is not particularly taken with board games specifically. He tends to look at the more complicated ones like BSG and say that he wishes they were video games so that the computer could track all the fiddly bits for him
    2 folks who hadn't really played anything more complex than Risk in the past
    My 12-year-old sister

    And all 8 of us loved it. We played four rounds, and things got increasingly tense as we all learned the game well enough to start making good decisions quickly. (Sidenote: "Increasingly tense" also means that, while everybody was on their best behavior during the first round because of my sister's young age, the last round saw a couple F-bombs dropped when people got so wrapped up in their ship's difficulties that they forgot everything else. She thought it was hilarious, fortunately.)

    I started off as captain of The Love Boat. The first round ended when the opposite team accidentally sank themselves by moving the wrong direction and taking the last point of damage.

    Towards the end of the second round, the psy-ops started. I made some bad calls that got us into a situation where we couldn't move west or east because of our trail, and couldn't move north because of an island. My engineer informed me that I needed to move east or west, which I couldn't do, and that both north and south were Very Bad Plans. I was also fairly sure that the enemy radio operator was narrowing in on our location. So I discussed the relative merits of north vs. south with the engineer, stating that I could do either one. I saw the look of confusion pass over the enemy radio operator's face when I said it, because according to his (accurate!) calculations I couldn't move north. As he frantically slid his overlay around, checking for other possibilities, I checked with my radio operator to get a general sense of their position. They weren't super close, so I waited a few more beats to let the enemy's confusion reach full steam and then surfaced. We survived the ensuing pursuit because the radio operator couldn't make a call with confidence, having been thrown off by my misinformation. Feels good, man.

    For third and fourth rounds, we shuffled up and I got to play as the engineer, which is not as easy as it looks, holy shit. I'm afraid I wasn't very good at that part, but would love to try it again.

    Lastly, like any good addict, I'm looking forward to the inevitable expansions for this thing. New maps and scenarios seem like obvious choices, but I'm also intrigued by the notion that the First Mate's sheet could easily be altered in a lot of ways. Ships I'd like to see:

    A ship with no torpedoes, but two mine systems that can be charged separately
    A ship with two Silent Running systems, but longer charge times on all weapon systems
    A ship with only 2 health, but much faster charge times on all systems
    A ship with a repair system that has a long charge time, but can be activated to clean off a box (or maybe all the boxes) on the engineer's sheet

    Basically, give me more tactical variety and I'll love you (even more) forever, Captain Sonar.

    A++ will play again ASAP.

    admanbFishmanCampyElvenshaeBrodyCaptainPeacockDarkPrimusmysticjuicerInfidelGuibsMNC DoverCantideRendHedgethorncrimsoncoyoteSixEl Mucho
  • Joe DizzyJoe Dizzy Registered User regular
    Astaereth wrote: »
    I think there's an important distinction to be made between emergent narrative and more directed, internal narrative.

    Only in the sense that one is a boardgame narrative, and the other is not.

    Any medium defines the parameters of how a story is told, and by extension what we understand as narrative (cf. McLuhan). It follows that a narrative told through the medium of a boardgame follows different patterns, manifests itself differently and is seeded differently than that of a novel or a film.

    The biggest mistake in my opinon that designers do when attempting to put narrative into a game is following the narrative forms and conventions in other media. You can't just cut up a graphic novel into pretty pictures, plaster them all over cards and call the result a "narrative game". It's hacky and a waste. Imagine somebody videotaping a readthrough of a script and calling the result a "film narrative". It is that only in the loosest sense of the term, and takes no advantage of the medium's inherent strengths.

    Boardgames are no different. Any boardgame that does not incorporate the medium's unique qualities (like interactivity, like the overlap of protagonist & audience, etc.) fails as a narrative boardgame. But that doesn't mean that narrative and gaming is at odds with one another. Gaming is only at odds with narratives as they are told in other, static media.

    MrVyngaardElvenshaejergarmarJacobyCantide
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited August 2016
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    I do not agree with that statement.
    Rend wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    Dwarf fortress would like a word with you.

    You're confusing a story you create from what happens in your head to an actual story being told.

    Adding any kind of exception or qualifier while you're trying to tell a story will make telling that story more difficult. Period. It doesn't mean the story will 100% of the time end up shittier or can't be enjoyable.

    "Tell me a story but involve some gameplay in it" is no different then "Tell me a story but never use the word "and"". It's going to be more difficult.

    Magic Pink on
  • SageinaRageSageinaRage Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    I do not agree with that statement.
    Rend wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    Dwarf fortress would like a word with you.

    You're confusing a story you create from what happens in your head to an actual story being told.

    So this is an interesting distinction to me - what do you mean by 'an actual story'? It seems to me that one of the big innovations in gaming is changing what a story means from just a single narrative in text form to something that can be experienced and differs based on the player - even in things like metroid prime without emergent gameplay, the story is still created in your head based on things like reading the log files you find, or don't find.

  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    I do not agree with that statement.
    Rend wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    Honestly I think it can be argued that narrative and gameplay are, at the very least, directly antithetical to one another.

    I'd like to hear said argument, as I am not convinced.

    Well, any kind of gameplay is going to get in the way of telling a good story no matter what medium you're looking at. that's pretty much a given

    Dwarf fortress would like a word with you.

    You're confusing a story you create from what happens in your head to an actual story being told.

    So this is an interesting distinction to me - what do you mean by 'an actual story'? It seems to me that one of the big innovations in gaming is changing what a story means from just a single narrative in text form to something that can be experienced and differs based on the player - even in things like metroid prime without emergent gameplay, the story is still created in your head based on things like reading the log files you find, or don't find.

    By actual story I mean a story fashioned for others to read versus a story you are making yourself out of some things that happen in a game. Neither is inherently better than the other so yeah I shouldn't use "actual" there since it's possible to infer that.

  • ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited August 2016
    Bursar wrote: »
    We wrapped up our Imperial Assault campaign!
    Final Boss Darth Vader is some straight-up OP bantha poodoo.

    The Imperial player was generating enough threat to summon a new 12-HP Elite Guard every round, which made everything very difficult. After clearing out an initial infestation of Stormtroopers and a surprisingly accurate E-Web, the Guards were just awful, dedicating their lives to standing in front of doors and just stepping on our toes. We finally powered through the final door by blowing it open from a distance, which caused Darth Vader to a) stand in a corner and ignore us, forcing us to go on the offensive before time ran out and then b) run into the middle of the room and just start destroying everyone.
    The other Imperial characters just ran interference, blocking lines of sight for the General to prevent him from easily commanding other rebels from doing stuff. Finally, we were all out of stamina and got flattened within 2 rounds of Vader's appearance.

    It was ultimately a very disappointing "final boss" from the Rebel's side, because it was just a sheer steamroll that Vader could cross the room and start massacring us in no time at all. The Imperial player did enjoy it, though, as the campaign had been building up for so long and he finally was able to start wailing on us the way we'd been cutting down his characters.

    Huh, I suspect this will go very poorly for the group I have that's playing through this now and then. 4 Rebels, we won the first 2 missions, but have been stomped since (I think we've done 4 story missions and 1 side mission now?). It doesn't help that the Imperial player has played through a bunch of missions with 2 Rebels, and the Rebel overlapping player won't share any of her info/insight, so the one side is refining their game while we're not making informed choices regarding what we should do. Also timed missions always seem obnoxiously short considering just how far characters can actually move. It feels to me like the game is balanced to provide a challenge for when the players know what's going to happen, which means that when the players don't know this, it's just ridiculous at times.

    Further compounded by our only playing a mission or two every couple of months (as Group B), so there's always a little rust to knock off as we get back into things.

    The 'rich get richer' aspect makes comebacks seem unlikely, and that was also getting annoying.

    Sorry, that's my contractually obligated IA rant. I've bowed out of the game due to the aforementioned frustrations, and I believe the plan is to start a new game with someone else (rather than continuing from where they left off), which I'm guessing will probably make for a more enjoyable Rebel experience to start, because they'll... be going into the early missions knowing what they're doing (also depending on the random missions of course).

    Forar on
    First they came for the Muslims, and we said NOT TODAY, MOTHERFUCKER!
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Forar wrote: »
    Also timed missions always seem obnoxiously short considering just how far characters can actually move. It feels to me like the game is balanced to provide a challenge for when the players know what's going to happen, which means that when the players don't know this, it's just ridiculous at times.

    This and the few required skill challenges were quite frustrating for our group. We played 3 story and 1 or 2 side missions I think, before we ended up not having time for game nights since. I think if there's a time limit, it should be public knowledge. Getting halfway through the level and then being told time is up and you failed is not fun.

    OSvv7zs.pngjswidget.php?username=ArcSyn&numitems=5&header=0&text=none&images=small&show=recentplays&imagesonly=1&imagepos=center&inline=1&domains%5B%5D=boardgame&imagewidget=1
  • AuralynxAuralynx Thirty-Seven Keys Registered User regular
    Forar wrote: »
    Bursar wrote: »
    We wrapped up our Imperial Assault campaign!
    Final Boss Darth Vader is some straight-up OP bantha poodoo.

    The Imperial player was generating enough threat to summon a new 12-HP Elite Guard every round, which made everything very difficult. After clearing out an initial infestation of Stormtroopers and a surprisingly accurate E-Web, the Guards were just awful, dedicating their lives to standing in front of doors and just stepping on our toes. We finally powered through the final door by blowing it open from a distance, which caused Darth Vader to a) stand in a corner and ignore us, forcing us to go on the offensive before time ran out and then b) run into the middle of the room and just start destroying everyone.
    The other Imperial characters just ran interference, blocking lines of sight for the General to prevent him from easily commanding other rebels from doing stuff. Finally, we were all out of stamina and got flattened within 2 rounds of Vader's appearance.

    It was ultimately a very disappointing "final boss" from the Rebel's side, because it was just a sheer steamroll that Vader could cross the room and start massacring us in no time at all. The Imperial player did enjoy it, though, as the campaign had been building up for so long and he finally was able to start wailing on us the way we'd been cutting down his characters.

    Huh, I suspect this will go very poorly for the group I have that's playing through this now and then. 4 Rebels, we won the first 2 missions, but have been stomped since (I think we've done 4 story missions and 1 side mission now?). It doesn't help that the Imperial player has played through a bunch of missions with 2 Rebels, and the Rebel overlapping player won't share any of her info/insight, so the one side is refining their game while we're not making informed choices regarding what we should do. Also timed missions always seem obnoxiously short considering just how far characters can actually move. It feels to me like the game is balanced to provide a challenge for when the players know what's going to happen, which means that when the players don't know this, it's just ridiculous at times.

    Further compounded by our only playing a mission or two every couple of months (as Group B), so there's always a little rust to knock off as we get back into things.

    The 'rich get richer' aspect makes comebacks seem unlikely, and that was also getting annoying.

    Sorry, that's my contractually obligated IA rant. I've bowed out of the game due to the aforementioned frustrations, and I believe the plan is to start a new game with someone else (rather than continuing from where they left off), which I'm guessing will probably make for a more enjoyable Rebel experience to start, because they'll... be going into the early missions knowing what they're doing (also depending on the random missions of course).

    At least one of my group's losses was the result of not immediately realizing which objectives we had to pursue first to succeed. We're playing entirely-blind as the only player in our group who's got any outside IA experience is behind where we are in the campaign.

    I love that IA encourages you to hurry but you're definitely right that it could make it a little more transparent where to hurry to.

    Space... what is the point of it? You have no idea.
    OSvv7zs.png


  • FryFry Registered User regular
    edited August 2016
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Forar wrote: »
    Also timed missions always seem obnoxiously short considering just how far characters can actually move. It feels to me like the game is balanced to provide a challenge for when the players know what's going to happen, which means that when the players don't know this, it's just ridiculous at times.

    This and the few required skill challenges were quite frustrating for our group. We played 3 story and 1 or 2 side missions I think, before we ended up not having time for game nights since. I think if there's a time limit, it should be public knowledge. Getting halfway through the level and then being told time is up and you failed is not fun.

    Time limits are public knowledge in all the scenarios I've read (which is all of the Core as well as Twin Shadows), and I can't imagine they would change that for later expansions. If you're getting a "surprise, game's over" then your Imperial Player is not playing correctly. Any mission that has a time limit will have "the mission ends after round X" as one of the rules in the mission briefing, which is to be read aloud in its entirety (fluff and rules alike).

    Similarly, you should always know what your objective is: the thing the rebels currently need to accomplish is marked with a Rebel insignia, and the IP is supposed to emphasize that during the reading. If there's a way for the game to end early other than time running out, that's also a mission rule that should be read aloud. A typical briefing might say something like "the mission will end at the end of round 6, when all the terminals have been destroyed (Rebel insignia), or when all the Rebels are wounded." If it's possible to open a locked door, there should be a rule that allows someone to open it either via attacks, an interaction with a particular object, or a specific attribute test. There is never a situation where you should be wondering whether you need to Attack or Interact with an object, there should be a mission rule that tells you.

    If you're unsure whether the IP is giving you all the info you're entitled to, I'd suggest reading the first page of the Campaign Guide - there's no spoilery or hidden information before the "opening crawl."

    Fry on
    antherem
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Fry wrote: »
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Forar wrote: »
    Also timed missions always seem obnoxiously short considering just how far characters can actually move. It feels to me like the game is balanced to provide a challenge for when the players know what's going to happen, which means that when the players don't know this, it's just ridiculous at times.

    This and the few required skill challenges were quite frustrating for our group. We played 3 story and 1 or 2 side missions I think, before we ended up not having time for game nights since. I think if there's a time limit, it should be public knowledge. Getting halfway through the level and then being told time is up and you failed is not fun.

    Time limits are public knowledge in all the scenarios I've read (which is all of the Core as well as Twin Shadows), and I can't imagine they would change that for later expansions. If you're getting a "surprise, game's over" then your Imperial Player is not playing correctly. Any mission that has a time limit will have "the mission ends after round X" as one of the rules in the mission briefing, which is to be read aloud in its entirety (fluff and rules alike).

    Similarly, you should always know what your objective is: the thing the rebels currently need to accomplish is marked with a Rebel insignia, and the IP is supposed to emphasize that during the reading. If there's a way for the game to end early other than time running out, that's also a mission rule that should be read aloud. A typical briefing might say something like "the mission will end at the end of round 6, when all the terminals have been destroyed (Rebel insignia), or when all the Rebels are wounded." If it's possible to open a locked door, there should be a rule that allows someone to open it either via attacks, an interaction with a particular object, or a specific attribute test. There is never a situation where you should be wondering whether you need to Attack or Interact with an object, there should be a mission rule that tells you.

    If you're unsure whether the IP is giving you all the info you're entitled to, I'd suggest reading the first page of the Campaign Guide - there's no spoilery or hidden information before the "opening crawl."

    Then it's entirely possible our imperial misunderstood the rules and was not giving us all of the information we were supposed to be getting.

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  • FairchildFairchild Rabbit used short words that were easy to understand, like "Hello Pooh, how about Lunch ?" Registered User regular
    Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, if I'm the Galactic Empire, embodiment of tyrannical evil, I wouldn't be giving the Rebels any information, either. I'm evil, dangit, and I'm going to act like it !

    Elvenshae
  • ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited August 2016
    Oh, the time limits were known, it's that there's little context as to what exactly is happening. One mission will indicate that bringing down a blast door will cause something to happen, but not tell you that it means you now have 3 mid boss level characters to deal with. The melee guys need to be planning 1-2 turns in advance as to where they want to be, but knowing whether they'll be best spent running down that hallway, or down this other hallway, or hanging back recuperating, is an unknown until it's too late.

    There's one fairly early mission that we fell a bit short on, because it had 3 paths to go down, and even knowing the time limit was tight, splitting the group too dramatically was just asking for the Imperial player to violate a weaker member/team, and the rooms we were clearing towards had random skills necessary, so if a person ended up on a wrong path, there was no time for them to run back, making it a gamble as to whether or not we were even efficiently splitting for those objectives.

    Basically, the time limit is known, but what you'll have to do by the end of that time limit isn't, so judging when to spend the team's limited actions to move can easily put the players in a situation where they can see victory, but it's mathematically impossible (or just really unlikely) for them to reach/achieve it.

    I could see playing as the Imperial in more of a Dungeon Master style (controlling the opponents but not seeking to win at all costs) as more my style, and hearing that there's an app coming out to make it purely co-op holds some appeal; having a person controlling and actively out to screw the Rebel team makes it more adversarial than I like with such a disparity in what each side can do and knowledge, especially for a campaign based game.

    I'm sure someone out there has an epic tale of a huge comeback, but unless the factions are trading wins, it seems like losing a round makes it even harder to win the next one (the winning side gets their bonus and the losing side misses out whatever credits/characters/etc they would've gained, yes I know some missions have partial credit rewards).

    Like, I love Mansions of Madness, which can have similar situations of the two sides having vastly different power levels and information, but at least when the investigators fail a MoM game, the next game isn't even harder.

    Forar on
    First they came for the Muslims, and we said NOT TODAY, MOTHERFUCKER!
  • FairchildFairchild Rabbit used short words that were easy to understand, like "Hello Pooh, how about Lunch ?" Registered User regular
    The very arbitrary time limits in IMPERIAL ASSAULT soured me quickly on the game. The challenge should be using your tactics and weapons properly to break through the Imperial defenses/thwart the Rebel attack, not rushing to use every single activation point properly while opposed by an unforgiving clock.

    Wolf of DresdenTheBlackWind
  • FryFry Registered User regular
    The introductory mission teaches you that there will be a pile of bad guys behind any door you open; you should be surprised when there aren't bad guys behind a door. :P

    I know which mission you mean with three paths and different unknown objectives behind each of them (A New Threat); that's one of the harder missions for the Rebels to win. It's still possible to win with tight play - the objectives are close enough that a given rebel should be able to visit two of them, so you can split into teams of 2 that cover all of the attributes pretty well, and have everyone converge on the last objective with just barely enough time to finish it.

    As for "snowballing" or "the rich get richer," yes, there is some, but I think the importance of it is exaggerated, particularly in cases where the Imperial is winning more of the games. The extra reward for an Imperial win is usually more Influence, which does not have a very large effect. (There will be one story mission in the core campaign that pays out an extra XP for the winner, which is more substantial.) I think that unequal rewards just amplifies the unhappiness people already feel when they lose five missions in a row to the same opponent.

  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    Yeah, arbitrary time limits and monster closets made me lose interesting in Imperial Assault very quickly, personally.

    Long term planning is basically impossible, shot term planning is just blitzing to the objective as fast as you can because you can't make long term plans and the time limit is so strict.

    I wish the game actually had room to breathe.

    FairchildWolf of DresdenTheBlackWind
  • FairchildFairchild Rabbit used short words that were easy to understand, like "Hello Pooh, how about Lunch ?" Registered User regular
    Inquisitor wrote: »
    Yeah, arbitrary time limits and monster closets made me lose interesting in Imperial Assault very quickly, personally.

    Long term planning is basically impossible, shot term planning is just blitzing to the objective as fast as you can because you can't make long term plans and the time limit is so strict.

    I wish the game actually had room to breathe.

    Very true.

  • PMAversPMAvers Registered User regular
    It'll be interesting to see how the replacement app for the Imperial player ends up working when that drops next year.

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  • antheremantherem Registered User regular
    Fry wrote: »
    The introductory mission teaches you that there will be a pile of bad guys behind any door you open; you should be surprised when there aren't bad guys behind a door. :P

    I know which mission you mean with three paths and different unknown objectives behind each of them (A New Threat); that's one of the harder missions for the Rebels to win. It's still possible to win with tight play - the objectives are close enough that a given rebel should be able to visit two of them, so you can split into teams of 2 that cover all of the attributes pretty well, and have everyone converge on the last objective with just barely enough time to finish it.

    As for "snowballing" or "the rich get richer," yes, there is some, but I think the importance of it is exaggerated, particularly in cases where the Imperial is winning more of the games. The extra reward for an Imperial win is usually more Influence, which does not have a very large effect. (There will be one story mission in the core campaign that pays out an extra XP for the winner, which is more substantial.) I think that unequal rewards just amplifies the unhappiness people already feel when they lose five missions in a row to the same opponent.

    Fortunately, missions like A New Threat are rare, because that mission is awful. It doesn't feel good as the Imperial player to stomp the Rebels with basically no chance of them completing the objective without foreknowledge, and the reverse is true for our group as well. There's definitely at least one mission in every campaign that feels like it was awkwardly adjusted after a playtest report and then not subsequently playtested again.

    Campaign spoilers for the main campaign, Hoth, and Bespin
    The one end to the main campaign where Vader gets to roflstomp you after every Rebel action is the other absurdly difficult for the Rebels one I can remember. On the other side, the last mission of the Hoth campaign doesn't seem possible for the Imperials to win, even when you have played it before and aim to give absurd tech advantages to the tank. There's also a "stealth" mission in the Bespin campaign; it's intended to force the Rebels to take movement and action penalties or risk being overrun, but there is no disadvantage to doing so, and as a result the Imperial player basically never gets to do anything because the Rebels have no reason not to use the "go slow" option every single turn.

  • jergarmarjergarmar inside your hollow manRegistered User regular
    Joe Dizzy wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    I think there's an important distinction to be made between emergent narrative and more directed, internal narrative.

    Only in the sense that one is a boardgame narrative, and the other is not.

    Any medium defines the parameters of how a story is told, and by extension what we understand as narrative (cf. McLuhan). It follows that a narrative told through the medium of a boardgame follows different patterns, manifests itself differently and is seeded differently than that of a novel or a film.

    The biggest mistake in my opinon that designers do when attempting to put narrative into a game is following the narrative forms and conventions in other media. You can't just cut up a graphic novel into pretty pictures, plaster them all over cards and call the result a "narrative game". It's hacky and a waste. Imagine somebody videotaping a readthrough of a script and calling the result a "film narrative". It is that only in the loosest sense of the term, and takes no advantage of the medium's inherent strengths.

    Boardgames are no different. Any boardgame that does not incorporate the medium's unique qualities (like interactivity, like the overlap of protagonist & audience, etc.) fails as a narrative boardgame. But that doesn't mean that narrative and gaming is at odds with one another. Gaming is only at odds with narratives as they are told in other, static media.

    Great point. My only disagreement with you is with your bolded statement, in that you call it a "mistake". It's totally legitimate, and in fact very successful, to add book-narrative to a board game. If that makes it less "gamey", well some people like games that are not very gamey. I like it sometimes as well. Playing Arabian Nights can be incredibly fun, especially with people I know and care about. But I agree it's naturally of less interest to a board game thread like this one.

    When I was a child, I had a fever...
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  • FairchildFairchild Rabbit used short words that were easy to understand, like "Hello Pooh, how about Lunch ?" Registered User regular
    It wouldn't be the first time that Fantasy Flight published a game without fulling testing all of its scenarios. Nor is it likely to be the last. The best answer is to make up your own victory conditions, based on relative player performance.

  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Make Ready. We Hunt.Registered User regular
    jergarmar wrote: »
    Joe Dizzy wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    I think there's an important distinction to be made between emergent narrative and more directed, internal narrative.

    Only in the sense that one is a boardgame narrative, and the other is not.

    Any medium defines the parameters of how a story is told, and by extension what we understand as narrative (cf. McLuhan). It follows that a narrative told through the medium of a boardgame follows different patterns, manifests itself differently and is seeded differently than that of a novel or a film.

    The biggest mistake in my opinon that designers do when attempting to put narrative into a game is following the narrative forms and conventions in other media. You can't just cut up a graphic novel into pretty pictures, plaster them all over cards and call the result a "narrative game". It's hacky and a waste. Imagine somebody videotaping a readthrough of a script and calling the result a "film narrative". It is that only in the loosest sense of the term, and takes no advantage of the medium's inherent strengths.

    Boardgames are no different. Any boardgame that does not incorporate the medium's unique qualities (like interactivity, like the overlap of protagonist & audience, etc.) fails as a narrative boardgame. But that doesn't mean that narrative and gaming is at odds with one another. Gaming is only at odds with narratives as they are told in other, static media.

    Great point. My only disagreement with you is with your bolded statement, in that you call it a "mistake". It's totally legitimate, and in fact very successful, to add book-narrative to a board game. If that makes it less "gamey", well some people like games that are not very gamey. I like it sometimes as well. Playing Arabian Nights can be incredibly fun, especially with people I know and care about. But I agree it's naturally of less interest to a board game thread like this one.
    A good example of this is Mice and Mystics. The whole thing plays out like a fairy tale story, and you are expected to read sections of the story outloud prior to running the thematic scenario. It really adds to the overall feel of the game, which is about tiny mice on an epic quest.

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  • Joe DizzyJoe Dizzy Registered User regular
    jergarmar wrote: »
    Joe Dizzy wrote: »
    Astaereth wrote: »
    I think there's an important distinction to be made between emergent narrative and more directed, internal narrative.

    Only in the sense that one is a boardgame narrative, and the other is not.

    Any medium defines the parameters of how a story is told, and by extension what we understand as narrative (cf. McLuhan). It follows that a narrative told through the medium of a boardgame follows different patterns, manifests itself differently and is seeded differently than that of a novel or a film.

    The biggest mistake in my opinon that designers do when attempting to put narrative into a game is following the narrative forms and conventions in other media. You can't just cut up a graphic novel into pretty pictures, plaster them all over cards and call the result a "narrative game". It's hacky and a waste. Imagine somebody videotaping a readthrough of a script and calling the result a "film narrative". It is that only in the loosest sense of the term, and takes no advantage of the medium's inherent strengths.

    Boardgames are no different. Any boardgame that does not incorporate the medium's unique qualities (like interactivity, like the overlap of protagonist & audience, etc.) fails as a narrative boardgame. But that doesn't mean that narrative and gaming is at odds with one another. Gaming is only at odds with narratives as they are told in other, static media.

    Great point. My only disagreement with you is with your bolded statement, in that you call it a "mistake". It's totally legitimate, and in fact very successful, to add book-narrative to a board game. If that makes it less "gamey", well some people like games that are not very gamey. I like it sometimes as well. Playing Arabian Nights can be incredibly fun, especially with people I know and care about. But I agree it's naturally of less interest to a board game thread like this one.

    Admittedly, it's preference pure and simple. I'd rather designers tried to develop and expand what boardgames can offer, instead of simply mimicking other, more established narrative media. But then again, it took quite a long while for novels to really take advantage of what the medium offered. The same is true for film.

    I'm just really impatient.

    ElvenshaeRend
  • RendRend Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    By actual story I mean a story fashioned for others to read versus a story you are making yourself out of some things that happen in a game. Neither is inherently better than the other so yeah I shouldn't use "actual" there since it's possible to infer that.

    This is only one kind of story though. What about the kind of story you tell through a roleplaying game like D&D, or a more collaborative one like fiasco? What about a story that continues organically with player involvement like how in several CCG's the deck which the winner of a world championship uses directly affects the background story that informs the cards? What about the parts of a story which are told through context instead of explicitly?

    You say "a story you create from what happens in your head" but Dwarf Fortress is a complex enough system that the stories it tells through gameplay are real and dramatic. They were just authored in real time by the interactions of the systems. A story you glean from Dwarf Fortress is in no way similar to a story you glean from a game of chess, as in a prior example. Where chess is abstract, dwarf fortress is specific. It even records the story for you and retells it in the form of engravings on your fortress walls and stuff.

    To assert or imply that the only real story is a hard script which a person wrote ahead of time is simply too narrow.

    Joe DizzyAlistair HuttonSageinaRage
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Forar wrote: »
    There's one fairly early mission that we fell a bit short on, because it had 3 paths to go down, and even knowing the time limit was tight, splitting the group too dramatically was just asking for the Imperial player to violate a weaker member/team, and the rooms we were clearing towards had random skills necessary, so if a person ended up on a wrong path, there was no time for them to run back, making it a gamble as to whether or not we were even efficiently splitting for those objectives.

    Oh yeah, we called that mission out immediately after failing it as ridiculous. Looking it up online shows the player base is pretty divided on it as well. I think it's just very poorly designed/planned.

    However, despite those complaints, we do generally have a lot of fun when we did play. Generally felt like we could win, even if it was a close call, most of the levels we played.

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  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    Welp, I'm a consumer whore. I just joined the Dark Souls boardgame kickstarter, as well as preordered Cardborne. Especially since Dark Souls can be played solo, and therefore, NO INVASIONS FUCK YOU PVPS!

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  • BursarBursar Hee Noooo! Registered User regular
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Forar wrote: »
    There's one fairly early mission that we fell a bit short on, because it had 3 paths to go down, and even knowing the time limit was tight, splitting the group too dramatically was just asking for the Imperial player to violate a weaker member/team, and the rooms we were clearing towards had random skills necessary, so if a person ended up on a wrong path, there was no time for them to run back, making it a gamble as to whether or not we were even efficiently splitting for those objectives.

    Oh yeah, we called that mission out immediately after failing it as ridiculous. Looking it up online shows the player base is pretty divided on it as well. I think it's just very poorly designed/planned.

    However, despite those complaints, we do generally have a lot of fun when we did play. Generally felt like we could win, even if it was a close call, most of the levels we played.

    I have to come back here and say that we all enjoyed the majority of the missions leading up to this point. It was just the last reveal that turned everything on its head.

    Big Imperial Assault spoilers
    Imperial: When the final door opens, you see Darth Vader choking out Weiss.
    Rebels: Oh! Mission accomplished, I guess.
    Imperial: Vader turns towards you.
    Rebels: I guess the mission is now "Escape," right?
    Imperial: The other doors all slam shut.
    Rebels: Right, good thing somebody's next to the second door already.
    Imperial: Your new mission is to kill Darth Vader. He has bonus health, by the way.
    Rebels: Oh.
    Imperial: Here's his card.
    Rebels: Oh.
    Imperial: And he takes one action every time one of you activates.
    Rebels: Oh.
    Imperial: And there's still the same time limit as before.
    Rebels: ...Oh.

    GNU Terry Pratchett
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  • BursarBursar Hee Noooo! Registered User regular
    Cantido wrote: »
    Welp, I'm a consumer whore. I just joined the Dark Souls boardgame kickstarter, as well as preordered Cardborne. Especially since Dark Souls can be played solo, and therefore, NO INVASIONS FUCK YOU PVPS!

    I fully expect one of the rules of Darks Souls is that if you're playing somewhere in public, anyone can walk up to your game, slam a figure down on the board, and yell "Fuck you fight me!"

    GNU Terry Pratchett
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