I'm Saddened... (Board Games)


Either way, from a game-theorist’s point of view what you’re calling rules are merely a linguistic construct, and what you might call the meta-rules are the real rules.

Granted, humans do usually think in terms of linguistic constructs rather than directly in math, so the difference may not be all that important :wink:


Sounds Munchkin-y.



Uuuuuuuuuuuuugh with fucking archaeologists and anthropologists talking about “religious significance.”

We know JACK ALL about the various tafl games. All that we actually know comes from two sagas, one of which is partially mythological (fuckin’ Odin giving riddles to a king).

Burial interpretation is a notoriously scattershot thing.

But, I will say that the various tafl reconstructions are pretty cool. It’s a neat game.


We have a photo of the Race for the Galaxy board game, finally completing its journey and bringing us all the way back to Puerto Rico:



Puerto Rico without uncomfortable brown “colonists”. I’ll play it.



Just sell it. Life is too short.


I really wanna play a game of this once. Preferably with someone who already knows how to play, so I can read the rules to confirm things rather than learn them.


TBH, there’s very little procedural complexity in TI. I got through the “learn to play” in 40 minutes on the exercise bike and looked up ~3 things to confirm my understanding was correct. Compare that to Triumph & Tragedy and John Company, two games I learned earlier this year that required multiple cover to cover readings of the rules/example of play.

A lot of this might be the result of four editions of rules changes. A great deal of complexity is offloaded to the action deck and the faction powers.


I actually just played this yesterday.

I hadn’t played in a couple of months so it took me a two or three turns to figure things out again, but like @pence wrote, it’s not a very complex game rules-wise. The complexity lies in the interaction between the various parts moving with each other.

Even then, we played a five player game in about 6 hours, which wasn’t bad at all.


Honestly it’s not the complexity that scares me off. I own both Arkham and Eldrich horror, which probably boast similar levels of complexity. It’s the 6 hour playtime that gets me. In the last few years both Arkham and Eldrich horror have shifted from excited to own, to regret purchases in my mind because nobody ever really wants to play. Myself included, Due to the knowledge that even if everything goes smoothly, we’ll not be done till after midnight even if we start right now.


We could bang out 4-5 games of Puerto Rico in that time.

3-4 games of Tigris & Euphrates

TWO games of 1846 or John Company

An entire two-player hot-seat Civ V game start to finish.

The hot topic among designers (both tabletop games and videogames) is around fun economy. How much fun is the game per unit time? What’s the most satisfying experience you can fit into x hours? I can not even begin to care about a game that’s 6 hours long unless it’s a transcendent experience.


You could almost beat FFVI, even if you get all characters and Espers and don’t use any glitches.


Remember atomic lengths of games? Shorter atoms of play basically always > than longer atoms.


Yeah, you really need to get a dedicated group of people who are willing to play and commit to the time. Also, we only play TI on weekends. We usually start around 12 or 1pm and finish around 6 or 7. I would never play TI on a weeknight.

Other than Pandemic Legacy, which doesn’t really count because it’s a campaign, Twilight Imperium is probably the closest I’ve ever come to a transcendent experience when it comes to boardgames. With the possible exception of Twilight Struggle, I have never played a game as strategically and tactically deep as TI, that also manages to be incredibly thematic and tells a compelling story.

You might not think so, it might not be the game for you, but unless you’ve played TI, you won’t understand what it’s like to play it. Without wanting to go too deep into hyperbole, Twilight Imperium is more than just a game, it’s an experience.


Arkham Horror had a short shelf-life for me when I first got into board games. The card game is a much better experience for me (and it’s probably the best Arkham Horror-branded game). Plus it’s self-limiting at 4 players.

The original Arkham Horror is the game that made me picky about player count after one very bad 8 player game.

I’m honestly curious what the playtime will be with the fast group. Dan and I used to bang out Eclipse in 2 hours, it’s what made us take our turns quickly. It’s how I take new players through 1846 in 2 hours and change.

RE: Atoms of play, I was happy to see that TI has strong atoms. Small-to-medium actions, including 8 Puerto Rico roles that players draft every round but activate at their leisure (I get X+1, then you get X in turn order).

My gut says something on the order of 45 minutes/player is possible without feeling rushed.


As I said. I do want to play it. I want to know the deal. Far far far too many trusted sources, now including you, have said it’s excellent and some have gone into some detail that have sufficiently whet my appetite, to really want to play it one day.

Just not enough for me to put the effort into buying, learning and, convincing my group to play it with me.


Speaking of big space games, Eclipse second edition should be on Kickstarter on the 10th. One round of game just straight up removed. Races and tech are being brought more in line so you shouldn’t be able to get a turn 1 ancient with a 95% chance. The bankruptcy mechanic is not the same, which is fine since they’re adjusting how discovery tiles are picked up. And plasma missiles are now the top tech, not second from top, and use 1 power.


I like playing it, but two people in my gaming group own it, so unless I move away, I would never consider buying it myself. It’s a phenomenal game, but not one that you need to have in your library if someone else already has it. Also, if you don’t think you can get a group together to play it, or don’t want to put forth the effort to learning it, I’d definitely sell it.

Unfortunately, Twilight Imperium is a game that I would almost never play at a convention or with random people. It really makes the game better when you’re playing with people you know, and know how they’ll probably react in certain situations. Playing with a random group is a recipe for a 12 hour slug fest that’s probably not very satisfying an experience.