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Subject: What are you playing this week? (May 6th-12th edition) rss

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Chris Graves
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Howdy gang,
Today we are going to talk about house rules. I know I have gone back and forth with my opinion, and I am interested to hear what the Pegheads think. I am also adding a poll, but I'd sure like you to expand on why you feel one way or the other. If you employ house rules in any of your games currently, please share those rules with us. Maybe you can also give some insight as to why you made the new rule(s). I am particullarly interested in, as we have some game designers among us, how you feel about a group house ruling your games.

That said, what the Pegheads really want to know is...what are you playing this week?


Poll
In general, what is your opinion of House Rules. Please feel free to explain your choice.
I like house rules
It doesn't bother me, some games may need it
I don't like house rules
Other...I will explain
      44 answers
Poll created by voodoochyl
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Jon Paul
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Re: What are you playing this week? (April 6th-12th edition)
Good question this week!

Looks like an edit to the thread title might be in order; I thought I was stuck in a time loop for a moment ...

As for what to play this week ... Teotihuacan: City of Gods is due to arrive, either on Tuesday or Wednesday!
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Chris Graves
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hornist34 wrote:

Looks like an edit to the thread title might be in order; I thought I was stuck in a time loop for a moment ...


Oopsies...fixed
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Kristopher Hickman
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I've only made a few small house rules. Usually in a big ameritrash romp like Zombicide or anytime a player can be eliminated. Another house rule we use is the two card draw to start the game of Kingdom Builder. We usually do something like that anytime you have to pick a faction as well.

This week we have some good ones on the table:

Tuesday Night Options:
Forum Trajanum
Teotihuacan: City of Gods
Great Western Trail w/ Rails to the North
Notre Dame 10th Anniversary

Thursday Night Options:
Champions of Midgard with Valhalla & The Dark Mountains
Forum Trajanum
Scythe with the Wind Gambit and Invaders from Afar

Friday: KeyForge: Call of the Archons

Saturday: Lords of Waterdeep w/ Scoundrels of Skull Port & Azul
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Macy Allan
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What a coincidence! For the first time in a long time, I have been looking over house rules/variants after a very long game of Fury of Dracula this weekend. We all enjoyed the game, and want to play it again, but it is just too long for us.
Any other time that we have considered a rule change,it turns out that we had misread the correct rules blush
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Chris Graves
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To answer my own question: "other". I'm on the fence. I feel like a game designer is vastly more qualified to write rules than I am. If I were to adjust something, that could unbalance a game that I assume has taken a lot of thought and play testing to try and get right. Also, I play so many games so few times, maybe like Macy said, I am just playing a rule or three wrong. Hell, there are several games I've played wrong numerous times.

This week I am trying to get a game together for Saturday. I'm shooting for Lords of Hellas. I think my Friday group is happening this week, so we'll see if it's D&D or board games. If we play board games, I'm shooting for a play of Who Goes There? or maybe Wildlands.
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Nick Shaw
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House rules: Depends entirely on the game. Some games I find it really helps the enjoyment or flow of the game, but some (like the well-known Monopoly house-rules) break the game. Example: Playing with open hands in Pandemic. You're not supposed to, and it makes the game a bit easier, but even Pandemic Legacy acknowledged it was useful as the Legacy version specifies to play with open hands; it means you're not having to remember what other people have, and not having to explain what you have without actually specifying what you have, which just seems silly.

From a game-designer standpoint: If house-ruling a game helps a group enjoy the game more, I've no problem with that; go ahead! It's your copy, do what you want with it! But if people start posting house rules on BGG with thread titles like "this fixed the game for us" then I start being suspicious that they've played some core rules wrong, and are attempting to fix what is actually their own error.

That being said, occasionally after a game has gone out to the mass public, and has been played far more times than playtesting could ever hope to, broken strategies may be found. In that case, house-ruling can overcome something that the designer didn't intend to happen. In a lot of cases, that'll be fixed in the rulebook of a future printing, but in the mean time, unless the designer/publisher posts an official FAQ or Errata, you'd have to "house-rule" it to fix it. Example: In Anachrony's original Chronobot, you could game the AI by just passing REALLY early in a round (even immediately) so the bot didn't get any decent number of actions (as it passes if you pass); you'd also not do very much, but you only had to be 1 point ahead of it, and you'd win. You could get 1 Breakthrough, for example, and the bot may take some resources, then you pass every era for the rest of the game; you win, 1-0. David, the designer, weighed in that he never expected players to not actually PLAY the game, so hadn't figured anyone would want to play such a non-fun non-game just to say they "broke" the AI, but he did then make sure that in the next version of the rulebook it specifies that the bot takes a minimum of 3 actions, regardless of when you pass. As a side-note, we re-engineered the Chronossus that's coming with the new expansion to avoid this issue entirely.
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Nick Shaw
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This week's gaming!:

Last night, I went to the Monday night group. Some of them had been there since 3pm playing an epic Terraforming Mars game that lasted 4 hours, but I only got there at 7pm. I got to teach and play Die Tavernen im Tiefen Thal as a 3-player game, which went down really well (I came last), and then Fleet: The Dice Game, which also went down well (I came a respectable 2nd, and broke 100 points, although Ian, the winner, got 129 - on his very first game. Wowzers). Super fun.

Rest of the week: Some playtesting to do, some rules wording tweaking for Rome and Roll, but not much else. I've got a work trip on Thursday for which I'll be sat on one train or another for some 7 hours total, so I might have time for some on-train gaming. Any good pocket-sized train games that play solo, anyone?...

I also have Saint Petersburg coming some time this week, via a purchase from the BGG marketplace. Hope to get that played by hook or by crook, as I love that game.
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Brendan Riley
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I put in there that I don't mind an occasional house rule. In particular, I prefer a house rule if we've found through experience that something is un-fun and the general consensus occurs. For example, we house-ruled an alternate move scheme for A TOUCH OF EVIL because the original game's roll-and-move was pretty annoying. And then they made that alternate house rule canon in one of the expansions (not due to any influence by me, I'm sure).

I will also introduce an occasional rule if the BGG consensus indicates it smooths gameplay -- for instance, there are some alternate scoring rules for SHIPYARD that we used so as to avoid someone winning because they got the better scoring card. That said, we're going to try the rulebook method next time.

I squeezed in a couple solo games of REYKHOLT during a break from work yesterday. I am attending my school's game club today, and then I'm not sure what gaming will come during the week. On Saturday we have a game day set up and are planning to play the next TIME stories chapter. Can't wait!
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Mohamad Sobh
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njshaw2 wrote:

I've got a work trip on Thursday for which I'll be sat on one train or another for some 7 hours total, so I might have time for some on-train gaming. Any good pocket-sized train games that play solo, anyone?...



Would suggest any Button Shy game, Tiny Epic Galaxies, Palm Island, Mint Works. Mobile apps: Jaipur, Ganz, Lords of Waterdeep
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Nick Shaw
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mohamads wrote:
njshaw2 wrote:

I've got a work trip on Thursday for which I'll be sat on one train or another for some 7 hours total, so I might have time for some on-train gaming. Any good pocket-sized train games that play solo, anyone?...



Would suggest any Button Shy game, Tiny Epic Galaxies, Palm Island, Mint Works. Mobile apps: Jaipur, Ganz, Lords of Waterdeep


Thanks Mohamad! I have Jaipur app, so that's a good'un. I also have Palm Island and TEG, though the latter may need more space than I'll have (no guarantee of a large table - if any table at all for that matter). I have ButtonShy's Pentaquark too, which would work. Not played that in ages (since I won it; lost its shine after that).
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Robb Rouse

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always a sucker for poles....will add the results to the show!
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Evgueni K
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I generally dislike house rules. There are so many games out there, so if a game needs to be changed to work for me, then I might as well just play a game that already works for me. Plus if I were to get used to playing a game with house rules with certain people, then it would end up in rule arguments when we'd play with others, so I rather just avoid it altogether in general.


As for playing this week, the new edition of The Ancient World arrived last week, and we've been really enjoying it and looking forward to playing it again! It looks like it has potential to be one of our new favourite worker placement games and I see it getting a lot of plays this year.

Roll Player is also a recent addition that has been a hit with me and my spouse. It has some really fun dice manipulation mechanics and has been a really fun dice puzzle for us, so we'll be looking forward to create some characters.
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Joe Pilkus
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As a gamer, I absolutely love House Rules, and while I don't use them with great frequency, when needed, I have no qualms about using them.

As a designer and developer, I'll simply echo what my colleague Nick Shaw wrote above...if it gives other gamers pleasure to play with House Rules, by all means use them!

As for this week,

Mon: Game Night with Chinese food with a friend ~ taught Glass Road and lost laugh

Tue: D&D 3.5 via Skype w/friends in PA and FL

Wed: D&D 5th Ed. via Skype w/the D.C. Gang

Thu: Hosted Game Night at the Irish Pub ~ this week, a 6-player Game of Thrones Event

Sat: Game Day/Night ~ 08:30-16:00 Playtesting a new title for Decision Games and then 16:30-midnight, Wingspan, Glass Road, and others!

Cheers,
Joe
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Chad Cornelison
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All for house rules when needed or makes group experience better. I have major and minor tweaks to about 10% of my games.

Played Viticulture, Mystic Vale, and Wingspan.

Not sure what will go down this weekend?
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Chris Graves
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UPDATE:

Saturday we played Discoveries: The Journals of Lewis and Clark and I really enjoyed this game. I think it is an excellent light to mid-weight game that is easy to pick up after a round or two for new players, and they can be competitive during the first play. I like how the dice work and how you get them back.

Then we played Galaxy Trucker. What a pile of chaos. Every round, I looked at what was coming, but by the end of the game, I managed $12...$12!!! That has to be the all time worst score in the history of this game. As usual, it was a total laugh fest.
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Robb Rouse

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going to be including this poll in the next show

EDIT: maybe not the next show, but a future one.
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