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The little things that annoy you in the world of board gaming

2010 October 13
by Michael Schroeder

One player says to another, “Hey, I think you should do this, and if you do…you’ll win!” That’s table talk, and some may call it collusion. Table talk of that nature, is the greatest thing that drives me nuts when playing board games. What drives me even crazier, is when it’s significant others that do that, when they are supposed to be opposing each other!

What drives you crazy in the world of board gaming? Specifically, what drives you nuts while playing a game, and what bothers you about the industry, in general? Is it the typos in rulebooks, the game nerds you play with? Do they all smell? I’m curious what you, the reader, has stories about, or just overall comments about, relating to this topic.

Analysis Paralysis

Analysis Paralysis, or AP for short, for a lack of a better term, is when someone will take their sweet time, or forever, in coming up with a move. Now you may say, “then what is the purpose of playing a board game, if your not expected to take your time and plan your move?” Well, that all depends on the game, and it depends on the crowd you are playing with. If you are playing a party game with casual gamers, then AP is something that would drive people nuts! But if your playing a pure strategy game, especially with your nerd friends, they should respect your AP, and in the mean time, be planning their next move as well. I don’t think I partake in AP often, but depending on the game, I will. In Caylus, I do take my time in planning out my moves. That game has the toughest decisions I’ve seen yet. Another game that I had AP in, was, Railroad Tycoon. The people I’ve played with, haven’t had a real bad case of AP, so it’s been cool so far. We all take a reasonable amount of time in planning our moves. Actually now that I think about it, I do know a couple of guys that take a long time in their moves. I recall playing, A Game of Thrones, the board game one night, and the game lasted 5.25 hours! It is is a long game, but there were some guys that took awhile. Now I did try and carefully plan my moves, I didn’t take as long as some. A mistake? Not that time. Neither me, or the other AP guys, didn’t win.

“I don’t want to learn a new game…”

This drives me nuts. My friends by now know that I’m a hard core board game enthusiast and it just drives me nuts when I suggest playing board games, and someone whines, “I don’t want to learn a new game.” Oh well, that’ll sure expand your mind! Sure, go ahead – be negatively dismissive and give up before you already started. I say, expand your mind with problem solving by playing these games! Break out of your comfortable mold! Hey, you had to learn Monopoly and Scrabble at some point in your life.

Table Talk

I’d say this is the final thing that I can think about that drives me nuts. It drives me crazy when we’re all playing a competitive game, and we’re all opponents to each other, and one of the significant others says to their other half, “oh do this and you’ll win!” No! Be cut throat! Be supportive. Partake in mild trash talk, but don’t coach someone or offer strategies, unless you’re allowed to, in a cooperative game. By doing this coaching to someone, you just assisted in screwing over yourself. I love my wife more than anything, but when I’m playing against her in a game, I’m challenging her, and I’m against her. That’s how I feel it should be.

So I’m curious what drives you all crazy in the world of board gaming. Share!

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