- Posts: 538
- Thank you received: 578
Bugs: Recent Topics Paging, Uploading Images & Preview (11 Dec 2020)
Recent Topics paging, uploading images and preview bugs require a patch which has not yet been released.
Victory Points Are Abstract and Unthematic
I agree that there are abstractions everywhere in gaming. Of course.
I agree that VP are much better when they are tied more closely to the action. I much prefer VP that are fluid - can be taken away, even.
I agree that many goals/aims/purposes/targets/victory conditions are not dissimilar to straightout VP, objectively speaking.
But, there's still a difference in the experience for me between those things (goals) and straightout earning VP.
It's like, playing a card is abstracted, absolutely. But the more tangible part is what that card allows you to then do - move on the board, fight, whatever.
VP is the opposite. You turn the tangible thing you did into something abstracted away, which nobody in the game would want to do. Which, as others have pointed out, you need to do to a certain extent. I get it. But I like playing the role within the game, and no role in any universe outside gaming is like "aha! I assassinated your spy! 5 prestige points for me!"
And one of the things that annoys me IS that pre-made conversion for the VP. Why IS that goal worth 5VP, and that one worth 3? It brings the maths and balance into sharp focus, because, well, that's why. They have that value because the game needs them to have that value. It's because the game wants you to prioritise in whichever way. I don't want the game to play me.
So prestige/VP.... yeah. No-one has a quantifiable prestige bank in real life, but there are other things that are quantifiable that are less gamey to gamify.
When it's used, I think my favourite is when it is player controlled. By that I mean - how many points something is worth is set by the players and gamestate.
phandec wrote: Also, there's a huge difference in how a game feels when it's a race to reach a specific number of VPs rather than just seeing who scored the most at the end of the game.
I discovered awhile ago that I like games that have some aspect of a race to them, rather than a tally. Settlers, Power Grid, Root, Race for the Galaxy, Dominion (in that the end condition is tied to player actions) etc...
Although the best victory condition goes to Summoner Wars.
Someone call Stephan Feld! If I saw a game called "Brown-nosed ass-kissing Burgermeister", I would buy it without even checking the back of the box.
ubarose wrote: be the most brown-nosed ass-kissing Burgermeister
And why do we call them "victory" points? Because we're nerds, I suppose? Unless your game has multiple flavours of points (in which case, you probably have other, vocabulary-related issues), what's wrong with just calling them "points"?
Next time I go to a game of Aussie Rules Football, and someone kicks a goal, I'm gonna yell out: "Yes! Six victory points!!!"
I don't mind the name and I don't mind the concept, provided the concept isn't offering points for 32 different ways to score. In basketball there's one way to score so the points are merely a tally. In other games you need a cheat sheet to figure out what options are available to you, and the guy who knows that list the best will likely win because of it.
I'm having this debate with the people that design the FIRST Robotics games each year, where point salad is standard operating procedure. I'm advising that they let their thematic elements drive the win first instead of coming up with scoring ideas and trying to balance them. They've done much better putting themes into their games in recent years, they need to take it a step further.
Long story short -- find the driving influence in the game first, then let the rewards flow from that. At that point you can call them whatever you like.