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Just because I don't know what I'm talking about doesn't mean I have nothing to say.
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La Rochefoucauld Comes to Boardgaming

Johannes cum Grano Salis
United States
Finger Lakes
New York
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"It's not hard to design a game that works, the real challenge is making one that people want to play again and again."--Martin Wallace
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Microbadge: "The reward of a thing well done is to have done it." -- Ralph Waldo EmersonMicrobadge: Swimming fanMicrobadge: Parent of Two Girls and One BoyMicrobadge: Innovation fanMicrobadge: "Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify." -- Henry David Thoreau
Oh, right. I have a blog.

I'm going through my various notebooks and unfinished digital jottings and am declaring Topic Amnesty. So while I don't have a new blog post, per se, I do have a series of vaguely related thoughts/aphorisms/maxims on gaming from the last 8 months, many of which began life as a potential column and ended life without gaining a single word.

Onward.

--Gamers sometimes try and increase their number of gaming opportunities by increasing the number of games they own. Then they have two problems.

--The number of games required to keep casual gamers interested is quite small. The number to keep reluctant gamers involved is smaller still.

--My Mother-in-Law claims Scrabble as her favorite game. She has not played it in three years. She sees nothing wrong with this.

--A well-rounded collection looks like whatever you want it to look like at the time you decide you're almost done.

--When I teach people a game for the first time, it is well-researched and well-considered and perfectly aligned with both my tastes and the long-term, repeated enjoyment of my group. When they teach me their game, they have wasted their money and it's obvious we're never playing the game again.

--Most non-BGGing people you game with are perfectly content to occasionally splash around in a relatively shallow pool of risk/reward and moderate contingency planning.

--Many people declining to participate in the 10x10 challenge mention something along the lines of "this leaves me very little room to learn new games." The amount of enjoyment you can get in a year out of "just" ten games is enormous.

--It appears that much of the allure of recent medium- to medium-heavy Euros comes in simply discovering/experiencing how the game's novel Action Selection or Action Drafting mechanism frustrates your choices. Once this is experienced: next game, please.

--Get to the bottom of: when I invite 7 friends to game night, 6 show up. When I invite ten...6 show up.

--Games that "work" 6p seem to be either (1) simple & light, or (2) twice as long as the printed play time.

--I've recently begun to understand the allure of wargaming. I reach for an abstract or a train game or a card game when I want to play a game. I reach for a wargame when I want to play.

--The best way to ensure your group favors already-learned games is to play on weeknights.

--The right opponent(s) can make any game fun, but even they can't make a dull game interesting. See: Tokyo, King of.

--When I win a game, it is because I planned and executed well. When someone else wins a game, it's because I made a mistake.

--Happiness is a shelf with empty space on it.
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