Front Page

Content

Authors

Game Index

Forums

Site Tools

Submissions

About

B
BradHB
September 18, 2021
232 0
D
DavidNorris
September 16, 2021
509 0

Quick, Simple Fun: High Society

Board Game Reviews
AL
Andi Lennon
September 15, 2021
535 0
O
oliverkinne
September 14, 2021
483 0

Play and Pass

Essays
U
ubarose
September 13, 2021
623 0
T
thegiantbrain
September 13, 2021
533 0
O
oliverkinne
September 10, 2021
554 0

Karuba Board Game Review

Board Game Reviews
B
BradHB
September 10, 2021
410 0
K
kneeshawdevelopments
September 09, 2021
578 0
D
DavidNorris
September 09, 2021
648 0
A
adamr
September 08, 2021
541 0

Mariposas - a Punchboard Review

Board Game Reviews
O
oliverkinne
September 07, 2021
646 0

Paring down

Essays
B
BradHB
September 03, 2021
519 0
O
oliverkinne
September 03, 2021
735 0

Earthenwar Review

Board Game Reviews
D
DavidNorris
September 02, 2021
733 0
O
oliverkinne
August 31, 2021
638 0
×
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.

My Golden Age of Solo Gaming

More
02 Oct 2018 23:00 #282631 by ecargo

Like many, I grew up playing games with my family. Rummy 500 was my family’s bread and butter, but many other games crossed our table over the years. Games were a social activity; a way to bond and spend time together. When I got into the hobbyist side of games almost 10 years ago, I scoffed at the notion of playing games solo. Why would I want to do that? I have plenty of solitary activities I can do. Besides, playing a board game by yourself seemed kind of sad. Sure, I gave the original Thunderstone solo mode a try. Once. It was cool enough, but nothing I ever pursued past that initial curiosity. I borrowed Friday from a friend and was over it after one play. I even toyed with Lord of the Rings: The Card Game when it first came out, but quickly traded it away after a solo play. I was certain solo gaming was not for me. Games were to be played with others. I held onto the social aspect of gaming for a long time. Then Arkham Horror: The Card Game came out.

Read more...
The following user(s) said Thank You: ChristopherMD, jpat, Frohike

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 02:46 #282632 by WadeMonnig
I also had a knee jerk reaction to solo gaming. Very odd, because looking back I spent years playing video game RPGs solo and hours and hours of solo time prepping D&D campaigns in my youth.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Black Barney

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 10:18 #282643 by jpat
Replied by jpat on topic My Golden Age of Solo Gaming
I don't know. I've never been able to click with solo games. If they're solo and multiplayer, I feel like I should be playing multi, and yet I often don't end up doing either. Arkham Horror: TCG is a good example of this, but so is, say, Pathfinder ACG. My wife, who's my main (increasingly, only) gaming partner, seemed to like both, yet we never seem to get around to them, and I keep thinking I might if I just played them myself. Even solo-only games I like I seem to get bored of fairly quickly (Hostage Negotiator being one). I've tried playing wargames with solo elements or bots (e.g., COIN), and I find myself getting worn out after a few turns and wondering why there isn't an app that would run the flowcharts for me. But that's just me. I don't think solo gaming is sad.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 10:26 #282644 by LazarusTNT
I think solo games are OK, but I prefer to play them with the wife, taking turns or collaborating on decisions.

Star Trek: Encounters and Desolate are the best I’ve played thus far, set up primarily as solo games. There’s others that people probably think of first ( Nemo’s War is a standout) as all co-ops can be solo played.

Plus Flix.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 11:51 #282650 by ThirstyMan
ALL of my gaming is solo and I love it. I play ASL solo and really enjoy it and I absolutely adore AHLCG. Part of the issue is to do with no gamers living anywhere near me, in the Middle East, but I also recognise that I enjoy my gaming solo and prefer it, in most cases, to playing with others. I am always on the lookout for new solo gaming experiences. As it happens, most classic board wargamers are very used to playing solo, particularly the , so called, 'monster' games where it can be hard to find an opponent.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ChristopherMD, ecargo

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 17:17 - 03 Oct 2018 17:18 #282671 by Colorcrayons
I play Aliens Legendary Encounters solo, almost exclusively. It works well.
Some games are just meant to be solo, and those are usually puzzles that gamers like to call "co-ops".

I'm at odds with solo games. While I will play games solo in order to learn them, and play games like mentioned above solo, it seems somehow counter to the intent I perceive boardgames to be. Which is a social lubricant. An excuse to gather together and share experiences.

I'm not sure why I have a problem with it, since when I play video games, it rarely involves more than me. It's a matter of perception I suppose. A hangup I need to get over.

But I'll sit with legendary encounters sprawled out before me, enjoying the unfolding of the puzzle, and I can't help but feel I'd rather be playing Alien Isolation on my PS4 instead as that is far more immersive of the setting. I don't enjoy the mechanisms of legendary encounters enough to play that over Alien Isolation. Perhaps that's why I don't understand the allure of solo boardgaming. There are so many better experiences than flipping cards in hope of an engaging analogue AI experience.

My other hangup is browsing any given game entry on To say, and seeing the beggars banquet lamenting the fact that a game whose critical and fundamental design is based around a conflict involving a minimum of two players. I have yet to see a game entry that doesn't have such a request made, with the obnoxious words "No solo, no buy".

I feel those asking are quite oblivious to how submitting to their entitled requests changes the foundation of a game to be something entirely what it is not.

I'm not without compassion to their plight, yet it gets tiring seeing such predictable posts.
Last edit: 03 Oct 2018 17:18 by Colorcrayons.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 Oct 2018 20:30 #282676 by mc
Replied by mc on topic My Golden Age of Solo Gaming
Chalk up another one with an acknowledged kneejerk reaction against solo, despite being happy to videogame alone.

I think part of it is setup and upkeep. This sort of stuff seems fine when playing with others, I guess because that's the bit where everyone is chatting about what's just happened or anything else, but on my own, it just seems kind of onerous to be laying it all out and then going through upkeep phases etc etc. Occasionally I'll get something out to solo and start setting it all up and just sigh and pack it away.

This probably explains why I'm happy to solo stuff via vassal or in some other digital format though.

I recently tried Sentinels of the Multiverse on steam, I can't even begin to imagine what the upkeep on a physical version of that is like.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
04 Oct 2018 15:19 #282708 by Frohike
Adding some counter-balance.

Solo board gaming doesn't slot into quite the same experiential territory as video gaming for me. I often approach a solo session with a craving for board game tactility and an openness to spinning my own narratives and visualizing scenarios that no video game studio could really conjure for me. I set a game up on my long-term "do not disturb" table as a sort of imaginative refuge from other media when those start to fatigue me or begin to feel hollow. It almost feels like a self-soothing ritual, if that makes sense, so things like upkeep and setup are actually pleasurable.

Unlike many solo gamers, though, I actively dislike the intense "puzzle" nature of some designs. My slant is more along the lines of scrying cards & dice, maintaining a weird cocktail of roleplaying and fatalism, subjecting my choices to chance operations & rolling with the narrative this creates.

It gives me a quiet space that feels like it lives at the intersection of Tarot, I Ching, RPG, and straight up escapist fantasy, wrapping everything in component tactility. I'm not always in the mood for it, but when I am, solo board gaming fits a very specific role in my gaming space.
The following user(s) said Thank You: BaronDonut, mc

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
04 Oct 2018 19:37 #282718 by Michael Barnes
I have solo-played games all my life. When I was in 1st grade, I got Star Frontiers and I played it (an RPG!) by myself. I would set up battles and play them out with characters. I solo'd Risk, Fortress America, all that stuff. I solo'd Magic, Space Hulk, whatever else in the 90s. Every single game that comes into my house gets solo'd at least one time. Everything. I really enjoy playing Gloomhaven alone, I think it is the best solo game ever made. It's great multiplayer, but I think it's best by yourself. In fact, I think there are a lot of games where they are more enjoyable when you don't have to worry about 3-4 other people being entertained.

I think it's weird that some folks look at solo games or playing MP games by yourself and are all like "why would you do that, there's no opposition, how can you play when you know what the other side is going to do blah blah blah". Don't fuckin' care. If I like the mechanics, and I like the way a game plays...then I'm totally down with setting something up and playing even just a few turns to enjoy it. I played a 3 player game of El Grande a couple of weeks ago just because I really wanted to play some El Grande and no one was around. Did I have a fulfilling and competitive experience or whatever? No. But I still had fun because I like the game so much and enjoyed just having it out, drinking a cocktail, and with a movie on in the background.

I would rather play solo games than most video games anymore, to be honest. I've really been surprised at how much solo gaming has exploded over the last several years too, despite video games. Nemo's War, Navajo Wars, Renegade, Silent Victory, Four Against the Darkness, all that stuff...some really neat designs just for one.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Shellhead, ChristopherMD, ThirstyMan, Frohike

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
04 Oct 2018 21:34 #282725 by LazarusTNT
There’s a FB group that has a LOT of info on these

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Oct 2018 11:25 #282755 by ThirstyMan
Yeah, I got kicked from that group for insulting some guy who persisted in posting 'shelfies' of all his wonderful games.

Maybe I called him a fucking dick. I can't really remember

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Oct 2018 11:32 #282756 by Ken B.
Replied by Ken B. on topic My Golden Age of Solo Gaming
I say more power and happy gaming to those who enjoy solo. I don't have any connotation of it being "sad." It's just not for me and likely never will be.

I do admit to grinding my teeth when people on KS hound designers to add solo variants to games that are clearly meant to be multiplayer. As in, "I know you've designed a great game, but I demand that you spend time that could have been spent refining the main game and insert a solo mode to appease me, because I demand it." That is the ONLY issue I've ever had with solo gamers, and I realize that is a vocal minority of them.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Colorcrayons, ecargo

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Oct 2018 14:34 #282772 by boothwah
Finally a thread about playing with yourself.


/obligatory Ken B. Post
//Barney once posted rules for a solo Shower Rescue variant. Sad.
///If Pete stops in and accidentally teaches us all some Cosmo sex move while humble bragging about how long it's been since he solo gamed, could have ToTY potential.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Oct 2018 14:55 #282773 by ubarose
I'm 100% a social gamer. I just got back from a 3 day game conn, where I played like 5 games in three days. Everyone is like, how could you only play 5 games in three days - well, because I spend most of my time just socializing. However, if there is one game that tempts me to play it solo, it's Arkham Horror: The Card Game.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ecargo

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
07 Oct 2018 10:33 #282809 by BaronDonut
I'm not much of a solo gamer, though I find it's a helpful way to learn a new, complex game before bringing it to the table.

One major exception: GorillaGrody introduced me to a grading method whereby you set up a game, grade a few papers, take a turn, grade a few papers, take a turn, and so on. It's a really nice way to make that slog feel more humane.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Frohike

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Moderators: Gary Sax
Time to create page: 0.171 seconds