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ImperialFarmboy87

Missing the Point!

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After reading and hearing a lot of conversations about Unique Games I believe a lot of us are Missing the Point. Let me sum up: We have been so used to the status quo of Competitive Play, CCG\TCG\LCG, Expansions, and just "You gotta Catch them all" mentality for so long that we are missing that Unique Games are a totally different type of game! These games are meant to be standalone; this box is all you need to be able to play the game. And each person's copy is a Unique experience to them. Discover: Lands Unknown for example is a fun and exciting experience, and unique to me. No one else is going to experience the game the same way I do. Yeah, it would be cool to have expansions and more terrain, but, we need to enjoy it for what it is and realize that this is something different from anything we have done before. Keyforge is similiar in that I hear everyone saying "But i want to play such and such faction". That;'s not the point of the game! The game is Designed to break the common tropes of CCG\LCG\TCG games. It is designed to see how good of a player you are using what you are given, versus getting all of the "cool" cards that are overpowered.

What I am saying is: Play the games for what they are, and not project previous games upon them. This is something different and new. Is it perfect? Probably not yet... I mean this is the first time this has been done, but now you have something that no one else does... enjoy it!

**end of rant**

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I totally agree with you, especially about Keyforge. I used to own a gaming store back in the late 90s. One of my regular customers was the #1 ranked Magic player for 9 months. Drcks that he constructed to win tournaments with , I struggled to win with because I didn't know the intricacies of playing the deck. That is the point of Keyforge, learning how to play your deck.  Just because you don't do well with a deck doesn't mean someone else can't figure out how to play it better.

 

With Discover, the thing I find interesting is that after you've played through all the scenarios and are kind of bored with it, you can trade your copy to someone else for their copy and get a brand new experience. A lot of people complain about the price, but if you traded 3 or 4 times, the cost per "copy" of the game is $15 or less.  That's a **** of a bargain.

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I guess it is easy for a game to appear good if you don't compare it to anything.

 

PS: I don't understand how the game can both be unique to someone, but at the same time the cost is justified by being able to trade. Both can't be possible at the same time.

Edited by Ignithas

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27 minutes ago, Ignithas said:

 

PS: I don't understand how the game can both be unique to someone, but at the same time the cost is justified by being able to trade. Both can't be possible at the same time.

They designed a large number of components(terrain types, scenarios, items, enemies, etc...) And each copy has a unique combination of those components. The basic rules of the game are the same and once you have played with your copy for awhile, you could trade your copy with someone else's to continue to play new stories and environments within the same game system. I'm not sure what you're not getting, it's absolutely possible for both to be true.

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9 minutes ago, mwmcintyre said:

They designed a large number of components(terrain types, scenarios, items, enemies, etc...) And each copy has a unique combination of those components. The basic rules of the game are the same and once you have played with your copy for awhile, you could trade your copy with someone else's to continue to play new stories and environments within the same game system. I'm not sure what you're not getting, it's absolutely possible for both to be true.

If you trade your game with someone, it logical can't be unique to only one playgroup.

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31 minutes ago, Ignithas said:

I guess it is easy for a game to appear good if you don't compare it to anything.

We have played many scenarios and editions of the D&D boardgame series, and as far as I can tell now (two scenarios), Discover is similar enough that it may be compared to those.

Similarities include the overall setting (co-op without overlord player, up to 4-5 characters, survival, exploration&fight), scenario game time and difficulty, structure of the game flow (survive a number of turns, then some boss fight/scene), random tile layout, fight structure and rewards, random regular (negative) environment effects.

The main difference is than in Discover, fights and overall randomness are toned down while planning (crafting, traveling on the map) plays a larger role.   OTOH, less randomness implies less variety on replay.

The uniqueness of the game is an abstract category, so far.  I don't think that this is really important.  The perceived replay value of a single copy depends on whether a known script still allows for a new, different and challenging game each time.  Trading for a new copy makes sense only if the game scripts and basic mechanics really differ between games, and you don't miss the old one.  I'm not sure whether this is the case.

I could imagine a different development, if the game succeeds: (fan-made) custom scenarios and campaigns that combine more than one copy/biome.  The basic mechanics appears to be solid and generic enough to support this.

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57 minutes ago, Ignithas said:

If you trade your game with someone, it logical can't be unique to only one playgroup.

That's a really useless distinction. Each copy is unique - that's a basic fact. If you want a new copy, you could trade with someone else and not spend more money - that's a basic fact. I don't think anyone is arguing that if you choose to trade, then no one else has played that copy. We all understand that. Each copy is still unique and replayability is extended by the potential option to trade copies with someone else. Thus, both are true. If you don't want to trade, you don't have to, but it's an option, and there are still thousands of people who will never experience the exact versions you have played even if you do trade a few times. 

The fact that each copy is unique is in fact the only reason that trading to extend replayability is even an option - so one of those things being true is absolutely dependent on the other being true.

Unless you're bothered for some reason by the concept that someone else will play the same copy, in which case, don't trade.

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I'm still not convinced that the Unique Game concept makes any sense at all for a game like this. Ok, so my copy is unique and not quite like anyone else's copy. So? How does that make the game better? How does that improve my actual experience in any way, shape, or form? I just don't see any actual value here for the consumer whatsoever.  Clearly there is value for some of you, as you seem to get a personal sense of satisfaction just from the fact that your copy is unique. If that is the case for you, I'm not disparaging that and I'm glad that simply the knowledge that your copy is unique increases the value of the game for you.

But I just don't see it for most people. I did pick up a copy of the game simply because I really like the survival genre in general. But after playing a few scenarios, it's clear to me that the game itself is not enhanced in any way whatsoever by the fact that my copy is unique. It doesn't make my game better. All it does is remove the option of expanding my copy to get more biomes if I wanted to do so. 

With Keyforge, sure. I'll be playing my unique deck against other players' unique decks. That has value because you will presumably be playing against other peoples unique decks. But for this game, nobody else in my group is going to buy their own copy of the game, especially because there is a chance they end up with the same 2 biomes I have. I just don't see how this model makes any sense at all.

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I don't believe you are meant to trade, buy multiple copies, or otherwise play different boxes of the game in search of different experiences. That's more a Keyforge thing.

I think the point is this:

You buy the game and invite some friends over for board game night. One of them mentions they've actually played the game already, at a different friend's place. With some  games, that is a problem - if the veteran player knows the best strategies, the best locations, then most of the night will consist of them telling people what to do. Generally, that's not so fun an experience.

With Discover that can't happen, because the veteran player doesn't actually know the specific ins and outs of the box in front of them. The characters and board is different, but so is the items and even the scenario objectives. So they might be able to give guidance or help with rules, but they won't be saying things like "go to tile A4, that's where the best food spot is", or whatever.

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I think you are meant to trade.  At least what I’ll be doing with mine at some point.  It’s a new concept and I think, at least on paper, they’re doing it right.  Not everyone will get it and mileage will vary from person to person

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At the very least it's an interesting new concept and they should be applauded for trying something new, especially when you consider the added manufacturing difficulty. Even if you don't like it personally in the end, it's a great experiment.

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On ‎10‎/‎28‎/‎2018 at 10:41 PM, mwmcintyre said:

That's a really useless distinction. Each copy is unique - that's a basic fact. If you want a new copy, you could trade with someone else and not spend more money - that's a basic fact. I don't think anyone is arguing that if you choose to trade, then no one else has played that copy. We all understand that. Each copy is still unique and replayability is extended by the potential option to trade copies with someone else. Thus, both are true. If you don't want to trade, you don't have to, but it's an option, and there are still thousands of people who will never experience the exact versions you have played even if you do trade a few times. 

The fact that each copy is unique is in fact the only reason that trading to extend replayability is even an option - so one of those things being true is absolutely dependent on the other being true.

Unless you're bothered for some reason by the concept that someone else will play the same copy, in which case, don't trade.

I don't understand why you make strawman arguments against the position that the coppys aren't unique. It is not a position I hold.

We bought the game as a larger group, because we wanted to experience the game, but 50-60€ seemed a lot for one person to shoulder. The game is decent and I am looking forward to my next game sessions. But it is certainly not a mile stone in board games and the notion that someone doesn't get it, seems ridicoulus to me. It seems that like in Keyforge people are emotionally so much invested in it that they have unforfillable expectations and then react overtly negative or dismissive to people that share their doubts or criticisms.

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13 hours ago, Ignithas said:

I don't understand why you make strawman arguments against the position that the coppys aren't unique. It is not a position I hold.

We bought the game as a larger group, because we wanted to experience the game, but 50-60€ seemed a lot for one person to shoulder. The game is decent and I am looking forward to my next game sessions. But it is certainly not a mile stone in board games and the notion that someone doesn't get it, seems ridicoulus to me. It seems that like in Keyforge people are emotionally so much invested in it that they have unforfillable expectations and then react overtly negative or dismissive to people that share their doubts or criticisms.

Your entire position was a strawman to begin with and again, a useless distinction that hinged on semantics. If you don't like it, or don't find it that amazing, that's totally cool. You were basically stating people were simply wrong for assigning certain value to aspects of the game design. You don't get to decide what people value or don't value about the game.

"PS: I don't understand how the game can both be unique to someone, but at the same time the cost is justified by being able to trade. Both can't be possible at the same time."

Each copy is unique - therefore by definition while you have that copy it is unique to someone. You can trade it with others for more gameplay value. This is inherently true and helps justify the cost to some people. Therefore both are true. Unless you think some people care whether or not someone else either played or will get to play the same copy, which seems like a ridiculous concern to me and one I don't think anyone has ever expressed. And if they do, they can just choose not to trade. For those who do want to trade, value is added and can help justify the initial cost.

 

Edited by mwmcintyre

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Many gamers are trained at this point to see blind purchase as only an evil.  They are blinded by the potential upsides to a blind purchase model.  In this game's case the idea is this game is about discovery.  A way to amplify that sense of venturing into the unknown is make the box content actually unknown when opened.  I think it is a clever use of the technology they have developed.  I've got my copy.  I think the game is neat.  I think it's worth comparing it to a game like 7th Continent.  It potentially gets around 7th Continent's problem where once you've played a couple times you really aren't discovering much anymore.  Only small amounts of the game change curse to curse (and I love 7th continent, but I recognize that issue).  I feel like I can get the same amount of games played out of 1 copy of discover that I could out of the core 7th continent game with no expansions.  Now someone could break out there own copy of Discover and give you a new experience even if you have your copy at home, and you didn't have to pay a ridiculous amount of money to buy Discover. In comparison 7th continent was a very pricey game (it had to be to increase the size of the game to prolong that sense of discovery through multiple plays). It's about about twice as much as Discover for just the base game and 7th Continent is not available for retail.  So good luck finding it for a reasonable price.

Edited by phillos

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