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Would you play an abstract with the complexity of a wargame?

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Author Topic: Would you play an abstract with the complexity of a wargame?  (Read 620 times)
usrlocal
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« on: July 20, 2014, 09:55:48 am »

A 25-50 page rulebook. Hundreds of game pieces. A set of inter-related charts and tables. A game board that takes up your entire dining room table. And absolutely no theme/topic related to the real world.

Would you play it?
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rstites25
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« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2014, 10:22:55 am »

Case Blue?
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usrlocal
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« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2014, 10:27:56 am »

Case Blue?



Not an abstract!
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Calandale
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« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2014, 10:54:24 am »

No. I'd be very interested in deep economic, political, evolutionary, or other sims though.

But abstracts should be simple. Like Go.
Euros too - if they aren't representing reality with complexity,
it is more a burden than a pleasure. The problem is that eurogamers
are reaching a point where they crave more game there, but they
are just layering on more complexity to what are essentially abstracts.
I guess it works for some of them though.
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« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2014, 11:18:08 am »

Would you play it?
If I thought the system was cool I would. Although I'd be at a loss of what kind of game could contains that kind of rules mass while not having some sort of theme locked in to it.

I agree with Calandale, abstracts should be simple and deep.
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usrlocal
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« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2014, 11:25:47 am »

I think the hardest part about trying to learn such a complex abstract would be that you couldn't tie it to real-world concepts. One of the things that makes learning the rules for something like ASL relatively easy is that they're logical in terms of mapping real-life situations (e.g. "Yeah, it makes sense that I should take a -DRM if my guy is moving in the open"). At least you can visualize it. With an abstract, it would be damned hard to lay on rules and exceptions to rules when they're not grounded in anything resembling reality.
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Calandale
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« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2014, 11:27:12 am »

I don't know about depth being a requirement. There are other things
which can add entertainment value in an abstract - especially multi-player.

One of my favorites (no 'thinking' abstract really) is Avalanche:



Which is a game about dropping marbles through somewhat unpredictable levers
to fill out a bingo card.
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Calandale
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« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2014, 11:29:35 am »

I think the hardest part about trying to learn such a complex abstract would be that you couldn't tie it to real-world concepts. One of the things that makes learning the rules for something like ASL relatively easy is that they're logical in terms of mapping real-life situations (e.g. "Yeah, it makes sense that I should take a -DRM if my guy is moving in the open"). At least you can visualize it. With an abstract, it would be damned hard to lay on rules and exceptions to rules when they're not grounded in anything resembling reality.

Yep. But more than that, what's the POINT?

Why bother making a game difficult to play and learn? There are great abstracts
which are simple and deep, to provide as much challenge to supply a lifetime.

I think the modern heavy euro is as far as we're going to see in this direction.
And the heaviest games there (stuff like Splotter Spiel) don't appear to be
particularly abstract.
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usrlocal
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2014, 11:34:41 am »


Yep. But more than that, what's the POINT?

Why bother making a game difficult to play and learn? There are great abstracts
which are simple and deep, to provide as much challenge to supply a lifetime.

I think the modern heavy euro is as far as we're going to see in this direction.
And the heaviest games there (stuff like Splotter Spiel) don't appear to be
particularly abstract.

Oh, I think such a beast could be super-cool. Highly detailed, rich interactions between game systems, emergent phenomena. Something you could really immerse yourself in. It would be like another world.
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usrlocal
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« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2014, 11:37:54 am »

Besides. It's not so far-fetched. Look at something like Bridge.
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« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2014, 11:38:48 am »

I don't know about depth being a requirement. There are other things
which can add entertainment value in an abstract - especially multi-player.

One of my favorites (no 'thinking' abstract really) is Avalanche:



Which is a game about dropping marbles through somewhat unpredictable levers
to fill out a bingo card.

So, Pachinko then?

I don't play a lot of abstracts, mostly just Go and Chess. Theme is too important to me. I've tried some of the more popular abstracts before, like the Project GIPF ones. Meh.

Maybe a beefed up Star Trek Chess would be cool.
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Meh.
Calandale
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« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2014, 11:54:17 am »



So, Pachinko then?


Never heard about it. It's kind of a party dexterity game (like Jenga), but with a bit of strategy.

Chinese Checkers would be another example - though I don't remember that being fun.


Games like Hexagony are probably about as far as I could see going with abstract
with complexity.
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usrlocal
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« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2014, 07:00:43 pm »

So what it is it about wargames that makes you guys tolerate the complexity? Why wouldn't an equivalently well designed abstract with equivalent complexity grab you in the same way?
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Calandale
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« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2014, 07:28:03 pm »

It's the relationship of the story to the actions. Complexity actually gets in the way
of visualizing for me but it can fill in details that make it worth learning well enough
to get a deeper story.
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rstites25
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« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2014, 08:05:28 pm »

As others may have said, I don't think it would be possible--or at least practical--to play a game that complex without something to tie it to real life to make the game somewhat intuitive. Most euros do this to some extent with the themes that they use. After playing several times, many people could play without the theme. But for learning purposes, the theme helps to learn the game.
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