Deciding on Buying a Game – Crystal Palace

One of the things about us gamers are that, yes I know it may sound strange to you, we all like to buy games.

Some much more than others!  But even those who are successful in curbing their game buying (or acquiring them in some other manner) still like to buy them. I’m sure they do get at least a little bit of a thrill when they pick up a new game, undo the shrinkwrap, open it (and sniff that new game freshness!!!!), and start punching counters.

I’ve gone through long periods where I’ve successfully fought that urge, and then some periods like recently where I totally succumbed.

Something I’ve never really thought deeply about, though, is how we make these game-buying decisions. It’s not always just a basic “oh, that game looks cool” or “I’ve played this before and want it in my collection” thought process.

Sometimes it’s back and forth like a point in a Bianca Andreescu tennis match (and welcome to all of you who came here after Googling her name! Stay for the boardgame content, please! We have cookies.)

I recently received a newsletter email from Capstone Games, and in it was mentioned a new game coming out in November called Crystal Palace.

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It’s a game designed by Carsten Lauber about the World’s Fair in 1851 London.

Continue reading “Deciding on Buying a Game – Crystal Palace”

Preview Playthroughs Harming a Game?

Ok, it’s Friday night and I’ve had a bit to drink, so I thought I would opine on something that I’ve seen over the last couple of days (hopefully in a non-offensive manner).

I watched the Dice Tower “Testing Tuesday” playthrough of Abomination: The Heir of Frankenstein by Plaid Hat Games (designed by Dan Blanchett with art by Mikhail Palamarchuk and Tony Sart).

I’ve been anxiously awaiting this game since I saw the awesome “how to play” from Girls Game Shelf and all of the accolades on Twitter from people like Meeple Lady (an awesome follow on Twitter if you aren’t already). It’s sitting in a pre-order right now, and apparently Plaid Hat has said that there’s been a production delay and it may be a month or longer before it’s available via retail (NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

Anyway, Tom, Sam, and Zee played the game, and it’s clear that this is not their type of game. It’s too macabre, and it is longer than the box says that it is (numerous complaints have been made about that, so much so that Plaid Hat has said they may be releasing a variant that will quicken play soon).

While Tom kept on insisting that he did like the game, but it’s just too long (as the game play time rose to 3+ hours and then to 4), it was clear that they weren’t having that much fun with it.

Since I haven’t played it, I obviously can’t comment on the play time and whether it harms the game. And I can’t comment on whether the game is fun, though it does look great from what I’ve seen.

However, to me this video gave a disservice to the game that I’m not sure is warranted. They were playing slow as it was (cracking jokes, making fun of things in the game like you are wont to do if you aren’t necessarily enjoying it) and I could see why it was dragging to the 4 hour mark.

Others have been raving about the game, and it’s very possible that a review from the Dice Tower (I don’t know who would do it) would be a positive review but talking about some of the faults that they found in the game during the playthrough.

What bothered me was that there were people in the chat talking about how they had been looking forward to the game, but watching this video had shown them that the game was too long and boring to actually get.

How many sales did this cost Plaid Hat?

I don’t know, but I do know that the general feeling about the game in chat was negative.

The video didn’t turn me off of the game. In fact (and maybe this is the alcohol talking right now), it made me determined to show that the game is good despite their experience in the game.

But it brought to mind something that I hadn’t really thought about.

Are these types of videos detrimental to games?

I’m not talking about playthroughs in general.

The Heavy Cardboard stream of Planet Steam was amazing to watch. They seemed to be enjoying it but at the end, the general feeling about the game was “eh.”

And that’s fine! It’s an older game for one (so maybe it wasn’t as bad), but the playthrough itself was entertaining and they saved the negative opinions about the game until they were actually done.

I just think some of these videos that come out prior to an actual review can be unfairly detrimental to a game when really there could be any number of reasons for the bad experience. Maybe they got rules wrong? I can’t say that’s what happened this time, but it’s possible for this or future videos.

I think they played a couple of rules wrong, but this was also just a first play of the game.  They had to consult the rulebook at some point, which also slows things down.

There’s no way to know whether it would grow on them or not (their feelings about the theme in general makes me think that it won’t change in this particular case).

I haven’t watched any of the other “Playtest Tuesday” videos, so I don’t know if it’s an ongoing problem with them or not.

But this one stuck in my craw.

Who knows? When I finally get the game, maybe my opinion will be similar to theirs.

But to me, it’s sad that so many people’s opinions were seemingly shaped by what might be a subpar gameplay experience by three prominent personalities in the games industry.

I’m not sure that’s a good thing.

What do you think?

Let me know in the comments.

One Year Blogging & Many People Met

Today is the one-year anniversary of my first post here at Dude, Take Your Turn.

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Look what the interns made me!

It’s been really fulfilling talking about one of my biggest (not involving people) loves: board games. Bringing content to you and meeting some really awesome people.

I’m proud of this blog; I’m proud of how I’ve stuck to it even though there have been long lags in between postings. There have been times where I wondered if it was even worth it to keep going. Who’s going to actually read and enjoy this crap?

What do I have to say that’s worth anything? Especially when there are so many other board game content creators out there doing such wonderful stuff already. What can I bring to this already crowded field?

That’s a constant nagging presence in my mind, and it’s one that I fight every time I think to post something. When life gets busy in the offline world, it’s feelings like those which make it hard to actually carve out the time and inclination to post.

But I’ve kept at it, and now it’s been a year and 136 posts.

I thought, as part of the celebration, I would talk about a few of the wonderful people I’ve met on this blogging journey. None of them have I met personally, but they’ve all been inspirations to me in one way or another, and they have all informed this blog in some way, either in style or content, or just picking me up when I feel that ennui that I sometimes get, feeling like I should be doing more but just not feeling up to it.

Continue reading “One Year Blogging & Many People Met”

Heavy Cardboard – For Those Gamers of the Heavier Persuasion

(Edit: 3/15/19) – Since this article posted, there have been a lot of changes with Heavy Cardboard. Amanda and Edward are divorced and have moved all the way across the country to separate areas. Edward’s in the Boston area and doing the show solo with guest hosts, but the live streams are still coming fast and furious and are still always interesting.

I really miss Amanda’s presence on the show, but Edward is still killing it, doing a great job covering everything. I can’t even imagine how much work is going on behind the scenes.

The podcast and guest hosts have been great, though I am slightly behind (I’m behind on all of my podcast listening, so this isn’t because of the quality). I still tune in to the live streams or watch some of them later, and it’s still a high-quality network.

I highly recommend checking the channel and podcast out if you’re into heavier games at all.

(See below for the original post)


Periodically I like to highlight a boardgame podcast or media channel that I greatly enjoy as a gamer.

I had not necessarily considered myself a gamer of the “heavy” variety (I’m not talking about physical weight, I’m talking game complexity). I have played some of the heavier games out there, but much of my gaming is of the lighter, Euro variety.

Then I found myself actually playing some. Games from Vital Lacerda  like The Gallerist and Vinhos (or looking forward to playing Lisboa). Or the wonderful Terraforming Mars and Great Western Trail.

That’s all a prelude to say that I find myself fascinated by some of these games now, and I follow a number of “heavy” gamers on Twitter.

That was when Katie from Katies Game Corner tweeted a link to a video made by a group called Heavy Cardboard.

Continue reading “Heavy Cardboard – For Those Gamers of the Heavier Persuasion”

Cult of the New to Me

Among the boardgame community, there are quite a few people who will generally only play new games that have just come out. They must have as much of the new “hotness” as possible, even though they’ve been raving so much about the new game that just came out that they now consider their favourite game ever, something new will come along and divert their attention.

There is a name for this among boardgamers: “The Cult of the New.” It describes people who will rarely even consider playing something that’s a couple of years old. If they do, they’ll do it begrudgingly, and only if you agree to play “Hot New Game #52” that just came out last week and they picked up on the first day.

And when “Hot New Game #53” comes out on March 1?

Excited

I don’t subscribe to this myself. I have neither the money, the inclination, nor most importantly the time to indulge myself with this kind of thing. There are too many games coming out to keep up.

Also, as fellow gaming blogger Katie Adley said on Twitter:

I do fall victim to what some may consider a subset of this mentality though.

That is “The Cult of the New to Me”

Continue reading “Cult of the New to Me”