Adventure Games, Part Two: In the Cards

Last month I posted an article about Fantasy Flight Games and their recent emphasis on adventure games. However, the adventure gaming genre is a lot bigger than just Fantasy Flight. As I mentioned in that article, the genre has been around for a while, with classics like Milton Bradley’s HeroQuest and GW’s Talisman. I missed out on Candamir, but it’s clearly a German entrant to the genre.

And, the adventure gaming genre is a lot bigger than just board games too. There have been a ton of card games that meet some or all of the criteria of the adventure game genre. This week I’m going to concentrate on a lot of also-rans, or not-quite-adventure card games, that nonetheless meet a lot of the criteria of the genre. Then in a couple of weeks I’m going to return with a third article in this series, covering a card game that’s just as much an adventure game as Runebound or Arkham Horror, and that’s Atlas Games’ Dungeoneer.

Continue reading

If It’s Broken Don’t Replay It!

Last month Larry Levy offered up a column that he called The Curse of the Learning Curve in which he opined that players should have patience with new games, lest they throw out something good just because of a bad first-time experience.

I can agree with some of Larry’s point. It does take time to really figure out some games. However I disagree with many of his specifics. In particular, I see a big difference between a game that offers a first-time player a shallower experience (because they didn’t understand the subtleties) and a game that offers a first-time player a broken experience (because it just didn’t work).

Broadly I see four different types of game design that are related to “the learning curve”, and in the first two cases I’d fault the designers and developers with bad design.

Continue reading

Strategy of a Game: Blue Moon, Part Two — Flix & Mimix

Blue Moon: The Flit & The MimixThis is the second in a series of strategy articles about Blue Moon, which I’ll be publishing about once a month here at Gone Gaming. If you haven’t already, you’ll want to read my original discussions of the game and my strategy notes about The Hoax & The Vulca.

This time around I’ll be moving on to cover the first two standalone decks, The Flit andThe Mimix. These notes originally appeared at RPGnet in a slightly different form, but have been revised, expanded, and edited for inclusion here.

As before, I’ll be starting out with some looks at card counts in the decks. I’m building on my listings from the last article to put everything into perspective.
Continue reading

Upcoming Companies, Part Two: Face 2 Face, Jolly Roger, Your Move

Last week I started a series on up-and-coming game companies who are producing some interesting games this year, and who may well be some of the notable movers and shakers in the American market in the years to come.

This week I’m presenting the second half of that series, with spotlights on Face 2 Face, Jolly Roger, and Your Move. In each case I’ve gotten some comments and thoughts from the game publishers as well.

Continue reading