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Wood for Sheep [May. 11th, 2012|12:48 am]
Now I remember why I stopped playing Settlers of Catan...

Second Thursday Games Night at Chris's tonight. We played a round of 7 Wonders, and then I was in the game of Cash & Guns which *Rose* also played in, which was pretty awesome, and then finished off with a game of Settlers. Now, I did have fun, don't get me wrong, but about halfway through I started getting a familiar feeling from it, and I was finally able to identify what I don't like about it. (Other than "playing with insanely overcompetitive people", which is thankfully no longer a factor.) Basically, the structure of the game has lots of points of frustration in it: resource scarcity due to tile placement, getting your development blocked by other players, dice not rolling the numbers you need, finally rolling what you need but getting nothing because of the robber, and so on and so on. The way they add up makes the game feel, to me, like a long string of not quite being able to make a good play, so I spend the whole game feeling like I'm playing poorly and being frustrated over and over. Which really brings out the worst in me as a player, and I don't like being the poor sport that it threatens to turn me into. So I'm gonna work on remembering that in the future...

[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2012-05-11 07:22 am (UTC)

I don't even think Year of the Dragon is that bad, though, because the thing about it is that you know what's coming. So you can decide that, yeah, that plague is going to suck two turns from now, but I'm choosing not to take a doctor so I can get these fireworks for the festival. Which feels very different to me from the frustration of the "oh, once again we've rolled a 5 and I get nothing" dynamic in Settlers.
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From: walrusjester
2012-05-11 01:56 pm (UTC)
Someone (hint: drdeleto) once told me the most useful piece of game design advice I've ever heard -- games are about making interesting choices. Settlers doesn't have a whole lot of choice-making so much as it has choice-frustrating. Although I should note that I'm a big ol' Eurogame heretic who finds Settlers and Ticket To Ride and maybe even Carcassone to be dull, bloodless affairs anyway.
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