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Football Strategy» Forums » Variants

Subject: Would this variant add strategy, or remove it? rss

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James Hutchings
Australia
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Hi,

I've just had a look at this game. I was wondering whether the following variant would make the game more interesting or less:

* Each player has a number of randomly assigned attacking plays - perhaps they draw cards or roll dice. They can have duplicates.

* Each player likewise has a number of randomly assigned defensive plays.

* Plays are visible to the other player.

* Players must select their play from those available to them. They use up the card/dice they pick and redraw/reroll after the play.

* Players could be handicapped by having more plays of one or both types than their opponent.

* I'm not sure how you'd handle plays that a player can't select because of the position. Perhaps they could exchange them.

Please give comments. I don't know much about this game (or about American football)

Also, would anyone be interested in an online version? Probably live against a computer opponent, but turn-by-turn against a human.
 
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Seth Owen
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I think your variant would essentially remove the strategy from Football Strategy.

While themed on American Football and based on statistics from the game, it's really a game of bluff and counter bluff which accounts for its enduring popularity.

It's really not a simulation of the game of football because it leaves out all the impact of player talent and luck. It's a simulation of play calling and sasumes the plays are basically executed consistently.

So you don't really need to knw much about Ameircan Football to play it.

If you want a more accurate game you might look into getting one of the more statistical based games like Strat-o-Matic Football, which AH also published.
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James Hutchings
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wargamer55 wrote:
I think your variant would essentially remove the strategy from Football Strategy.


OK. Can you say why? I'm not disputing that you're right, but I need more information to see what the problem is.

What if you could still choose any play, but you got a disadvantage if it wasn't represented by a card you held? For example the result of the play was adjusted to your disadvantage. Or if you could discard and re-draw for a small penalty.

Also, do you have any thoughts on whether an online version would interest anyone?
 
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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If you don't know much about American football, I don't understand why you're attaching your ideas to Football Strategy in the first place. Your variant sounds even less like a football simulation than the original game - teams don't win because they have more plays than other teams. And the first thing that pops into your head isn't likely to improve on a game that has been played in organized leagues for 40+ years anyway.

If you're really enthused about your idea, I'd suggest you figure out your own theme, or just call it an abstract, and treat is as a brand new game.
 
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James Hutchings
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Sphere wrote:
Your variant sounds even less like a football simulation than the original game - teams don't win because they have more plays than other teams.


I suspect that teams win any sport precisely because the coach is able to think of more possible strategies at a given time.
 
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Bob Slaughter
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The game you describe is very similar to Clutch Football (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/13049/clutch-football) ; you may wish to read more about that game to find why that approach may not work.
 
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Chris Rudram
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apeloverage wrote:
Sphere wrote:
Your variant sounds even less like a football simulation than the original game - teams don't win because they have more plays than other teams.


I suspect that teams win any sport precisely because the coach is able to think of more possible strategies at a given time.


Not games where the coach is hardly important during the play of the game. Teams win for a variety of reasons, luck, skill and the strategy of the team, as lead by the coach, or captain or players.

In this game, plays are situational, but those that are bad for the situation will be rejected by a player (punting on first down, using a goal line defence versus a 3rd and long etc.).

You -could- make it such that certain plays are better for a player throughout the game, and then there'd be 'more' bluff around using those plays more often (or not). Not sure it's needed.
 
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James Hutchings
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Odinsday wrote:
Not games where the coach is harldy important during the play of the game.


But this game assumes that the play decision is all important doesn't it?
 
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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Real football games are won by execution far more than by playcalling. If you've only got a couple of plays, but the other team can't stop them, you'll win the game.

But as you say, this game is about play calling. The number of plays available is generally a factor of the level of play, which determines the amount of time the coaches will have to make sure the team can properly execute the plays called. College teams have more plays than high school teams, and pro teams have more plays than college teams.

Varying the number of plays that each coach has available doesn't map well to actual play calling. Football Strategy already provides for three types of teams: pass oriented, run oriented, and balanced attack. Each has the same number of plays, but is better at executing some than others. This reflects varying skill sets of the players on the roster (a team with a good running quarterback isn't going to throw deep as often as a team with a strong armed pocket passer).

You're free to play how you want, but you asked whether your variant would add strategy, and I haven't heard anybody say yes. If you read closely, much of the negative response stems primarily from the fact that what you're suggesting doesn't relate well to football. That's why I suggested you start fresh, where the mechanics you are interested in will stand on their own merits, rather than be weighed in the context of a football game.
 
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Chris Rudram
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apeloverage wrote:
Odinsday wrote:
Not games where the coach is harldy important during the play of the game.


But this game assumes that the play decision is all important doesn't it?


Indeed, but I thought you were talking about all sports, not a simulation of a particular sport.
 
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Chris Rudram
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You could have a variant where you exhaust the number of times you can call each class of play. There's only so many times you can run it up the gut. That said, once again the game already captures that. Continually calling short rushing plays? The defence should begin to key on it.

I guess 'strategy' could involve having something more than current field position to guess on.

 
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James Hutchings
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Odinsday wrote:
You could have a variant where you exhaust the number of times you can call each class of play. There's only so many times you can run it up the gut.


What if, for example, each player got 20 cards, and had to use them all up before getting a new hand?
 
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Bruce Reiff
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Columbus
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I'd score every series...
 
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TPG
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Your suggestion is completely artificial and doesn't correspond to neither the real-life game of football nor this board game. Limiting the number of times you can call a certain play is about as interesting to this game as it would be to limit how many times you can use each of the three options in rock-paper-scissors.

While I'm not in principle opposed to some sort rule that corresponds to the real-life considerations such as for example player fatigue, weather, injury etc, that could plausibly simulate real-life limitations on what plays you can call, a random method is certainly not the way to go. Again, such limitations would have to provide some new level of scope and strategy to the game, to balance the limitation put on players, and I honestly can't say this game needs that added dimension. It is, as has been pointed out, to deterministic and abstract already, to be tampered with by inserting new unknowns and/or random elements.

Finally, my main criticism of your idea is that it is obvious that you don't fully appreciate just how ingeniously and finely tuned the numbers in this game are. Taking out even a single play on either side of the ball could, and probably would, tilt this balance so severly that play becomes much less dynamic, even predictable.

With all this said, please understand that I'm critisizing your idea, not your person. I love it that there are so many of us that enjoy trying to modify and add to, or even make new games. Ideas need to survive on their own, by their own merits. This idea has no merit, but I'm sure you'll have better ones in the future.
 
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