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Subject: Why do we play games and does it have anything to do with theme? rss

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CARL SKUTSCH
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Since theme is being discussed to death I decided to bring back some of my theme related polls for a reunion tour.

First, I offer a general survey of why people like to play these games.
Next, we see attitudes towards themes in games.
Third, how thematic do people rate certain specific games.
Finally, which themes turn people off the most.

The general conclusion I draw is that people play games primarily for the fun of the thing and for the intellectual challenge. That said, theme matters to most people at least somewhat.

The most thematic of the top games are Star Wars: Imperial Assault and War of the Ring, followed by Star Wars: X-Wing, Ameritrash all. However, Twilight Struggle, which is usually called a wargame, scores very high for theme as well. Among classic Euros Agricola is the clear theme winner.

Least thematic is Codenames (duh) followed by Dominion and Castles of Burgundy (I would have reversed those two myself). I remain mystified that 3% of people thought that Terra Mystica was dripping with theme. I like the game, but it has about as much personality as a DMV clerk.

Finally, it's no real surprise that deliberate offensive themes are the most, er, offensive, followed by Zombies and Cthulhu. (I'd actually like to have some zombies and Cthulhu creatures follow after the creators of Cards against Humanity and eat their brains. Hmmm, a game...?). The least offensive (or overplayed) themes are vikings and wargames. No wonder we have a horde of new viking games coming out.

Poll: Why play games
Why do you like to play games? A lot of these answers are similar because I wanted to give people a chance to pick their nuanced reasons. Pick any and all that you think apply to you.
I like immersing myself in an imagined world, it’s the themes that draw me in.
I like simulating historical events (especially true of war gamers, but not only).
I like the sense of community I find in gaming.
Gaming pushes me into social interactions that I enjoy.
Gaming helps me stay in touch with my friends.
Gaming gives me more quality time with my kids.
Gaming gives me more quality time with my spouse/significant other.
I like the intellectual challenge of games.
Games are tools to learn and understand (among other things, the questions asked by the games).
I like the ways in which games illuminate different aspects of the people around me, human nature.
I like the competitive challenge of games.
I like crushing my opponents and hearing the lamentations of their meeples/counters/cards/plastic bits.
I like building economic engines.
I like creating little worlds of my own (tableau builders, 4X gamers, civ gamers, RPGers, among others).
I like the aesthetics of games, I enjoy the way they look, the patterns created by the pieces in play.
I like the collecting aspect, accumulating, tracking etc.
Games are acceptable arenas for adult play.
Playing games is a stress reliever.
Playing games is just plain fun.
      900 answers
Poll created by skutsch


Poll
When you play games with themes, how important is that theme to you?
Not important at all. I care about the mechanics, not the theme.
Slightly important. Sometimes theme can affect my enjoyment of a game.
Moderately important. A good theme can make enjoy playing more and/or a bad theme can make me less likely to play.
Very important. I really focus on theme when picking my games.
      431 answers
Poll created by skutsch


Poll
How thematic are these games? (Please don't rate if you haven't played the game.)
  Dripping with theme Fairly thematic Mildly thematic Pasted on theme No theme I can see
Pandemic Legacy
Twilight Struggle
Terra Mystica
Caverna
Through the Ages
Puerto Rico
Agricola
Castles of Burgundy
Mage Knight
Star Wars: Imperial Assault
Netrunner
Eclipse
Power Grid
War of the Ring
Robison Crusoe
Le Havre
Brass
Tzolkin
Dead of Winter
Codenames
7 Wonders
Caylus
7 Wonders: Duel
Keyflower
Dominion: Intrigue
Dominant Species
Race for the Galaxy
El Grande
Star War: X-wing Miniatures Game
Eldritch Horror
      533 answers
Poll created by skutsch


Poll
Which of these gaming themes do you find horrible, boring, or just overdone?
Generic Horror
Zombies
Lovecraft/Cthulhu
Generic Fantasy
Lord of the Rings
Trains
Steampunk
Business
Mediterranean trading
Farming
Being offensive (i.e. Cards Against Humanity etc.)
Political/elections
Animé
War
Vikings
Pirates
Quilting
      614 answers
Poll created by skutsch
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Mike Jones
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I don't like abstracts. So theme is very important to me.paste it in damn it. Otherwise its not interesfinv
 
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jay
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Themes are nice because they allow you to use different words to describe the thing you are trying to do. Moving a population cube would be colonizing while moving the money cube would be investing. 2 games with the same mechanics and different themes will sound like different games, won't feel like it though.

Most themes to me are Just words and pictures on boards and cards. Very few games ever really feel thematic to me.
 
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Samo Oleami
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Asking about preference about theme in boardgames is like asking about bass guitar lines in popular music. It matters in some genres more than other, some like synthesizer bass lines better, some don't care, but ultimately it's the songs which matter.

I like themes which are well executed in games which are well executed for what I want out of gaming. cool

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Michael Mench
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For me, gaming is about a spectrum of mental immersion and what part of the brain you want to engage.

On the abstract side, it is all about the puzzle, no distractions and the mechanic is everything. Blokus or Abalone... All mechanic and all brain against brain.

A combined approach where the game is about the mechanic and the puzzle, but the theme helps qualify the puzzle, but really you are just working the mechanic. Agricola is a good example of that. Codenames... Simple puzzle with a theme that doesn't drive the game, but gives your mind a place to go to help tell the story.

Finally, on the opposite side of the abstract is the Theme is King games. In these the mechanics simply push the theme and you lose sight of the puzzle and the mechanic simply becomes THE way to tell the story. Fury of Dracula (third edition) for us is a great example. Yes, there are rules and mechanics, but everything you do pushes the game according to the theme and not really the puzzle. Even games like Twilight Struggle and for me sit of this far end of the mental immersion of theme spectrum.

I don't like the term "pasted-on-theme" because it devalues the fact that there can be a spectrum or continuum of theme vs puzzle and that it is important for some people to experience it fully.

My thoughts.

-m
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Michael Carter
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sgosaric wrote:
Asking about preference about theme in boardgames is like asking about bass guitar lines in popular music. It matters in some genres more than other, some like synthesizer bass lines better, some don't care, but ultimately it's the songs which matter.

I like themes which are well executed in games which are well executed for what I want out of gaming. cool



I think you have summed up the most frustrating part about this whole line of discussion and skutch just ignores it.
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Cris Whetstone
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mlcarter815 wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
Asking about preference about theme in boardgames is like asking about bass guitar lines in popular music. It matters in some genres more than other, some like synthesizer bass lines better, some don't care, but ultimately it's the songs which matter.

I like themes which are well executed in games which are well executed for what I want out of gaming. cool



I think you have summed up the most frustrating part about this whole line of discussion and skutch just ignores it.


Maybe every time we attempt to explain it to him his lack of grasp of the ideas manifests itself with the need to post a new thread/poll?

cry
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CARL SKUTSCH
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Check out Clockwork Wars. It's a pretty darn good dudes on a hex map Euro'ish steampunk game. Quick and fun.
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WetRock wrote:
mlcarter815 wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
Asking about preference about theme in boardgames is like asking about bass guitar lines in popular music. It matters in some genres more than other, some like synthesizer bass lines better, some don't care, but ultimately it's the songs which matter.

I like themes which are well executed in games which are well executed for what I want out of gaming. cool



I think you have summed up the most frustrating part about this whole line of discussion and skutch just ignores it.


Maybe every time we attempt to explain it to him his lack of grasp of the ideas manifests itself with the need to post a new thread/poll?

cry

Poll
What should I say to critics who complain that my polls do not properly lay out sufficiently nuanced responses and so the critics are unable to or unhappy about responding?
By its very nature, a poll, with a limited set of responses to single question, is going to lack nuance. Polls are not about nuance. If you want nuance, go watch French expressionist cinema or read James Joyce's collected works (in a day). Polls are about shedding light on the general attitudes of a certain population on a particular topic. In doing this, they must inevitably present a distorted interpretation of those attitudes. I believe, however, that the distortion is an acceptable price for the light shed. After all, any attempt to communicate is going to involve distortion. It is one of the tragedies of the human condition.
Bacon.
      36 answers
Poll created by skutsch
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John
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CaptainMench wrote:
I don't like the term "pasted-on-theme" because it devalues the fact that there can be a spectrum or continuum of theme vs puzzle and that it is important for some people to experience it fully.


Yes, I don't like "pasted-on-theme" or "Dripping with theme" which makes me think of a game box (or miniatures) with some kind of viscous liquid dripping off which is a slight bizarre image. Or a game involving beef dripping.

The term "pasted-on-theme" is also more about the design process than how thematic the game is. It also always reminds me of Wei-Hwa Huang's heading "How to Paste on a Theme Like You Mean It" in the designer diary for Roll for the Galaxy. It seems possible that a game could be designed without any consideration of the theme, then a theme added afterwards and the game could be very thematic if the person adding the theme was skilled.
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Samo Oleami
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skutsch wrote:
Polls are about shedding light on the general attitudes of a certain population on a particular topic

So: shit in, shit out.
skutsch wrote:
I believe, however, that the distortion is an acceptable price for the light shed.

Illumination: zero.
Result: echo chamber.
skutsch wrote:
After all, any attempt to communicate is going to involve distortion.

BS.
What kind of distortion? Where does it happen? How does it happen?

If distortion happens on the receiving/interpretation end, it means some recipients can still figure the message out.
If the message is distorted by the speaker, well, good luck with that one. (also the responsibility for distortion is quite obviously on the shoulders of the speaker)

The desired state of communication is a dialogue - some sort of back and forth. This back and forth can not only figure out if any "distortions" (misinterpretations) are taking place, but can also enrich the original message or an idea. The problem with polls is that they restrict options of feedback, thus often just confirming the bias they started with. It's a monologue mascarading as a dialogue.

The only benefit of a poll instead of a discussion is not illumination, quite the opposite, it's asking for speed and optimisation (i.e. convenience) for the sake of illumination.
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Jeremiah Cook
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I can think of at least one other reason for a poll over a discussion....
 
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Peter S.
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sgosaric wrote:
The only benefit of a poll instead of a discussion is not illumination, quite the opposite, it's asking for speed and optimisation (i.e. convenience) for the sake of illumination.


Or, a poll can provide a platform upon which to engage in discussion: a broad, fast survey of many people setting up and complimenting a deeper, more nuanced discussion by those self-selected few who have the time to engage and care to do so. As seems to be the case here.
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Pete
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We can't really know anything...

...but we can eat bacon.

Pete (noms, therefore he is)
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Garth Tams
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Star Wars Imperial Assault, a rethemed reskined Descent 2.0 which is essentially Descent is one of the most thematic games out there? They have proven that the theme does not matter to the game's mechanics. It could be reskined into any number of different games.

Boil off the fat and you are left with the mechanics of the game. Those will warrant whether or not I have time to play it, not how it is dressed up.
 
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Jeremiah Cook
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How dare you say my AT ST is fat. How dare you, sir!
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CARL SKUTSCH
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Check out Clockwork Wars. It's a pretty darn good dudes on a hex map Euro'ish steampunk game. Quick and fun.
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sgosaric wrote:
skutsch wrote:
Polls are about shedding light on the general attitudes of a certain population on a particular topic

So: shit in, shit out.
skutsch wrote:
I believe, however, that the distortion is an acceptable price for the light shed.

Illumination: zero.
Result: echo chamber.
skutsch wrote:
After all, any attempt to communicate is going to involve distortion.

BS.
What kind of distortion? Where does it happen? How does it happen?

If distortion happens on the receiving/interpretation end, it means some recipients can still figure the message out.
If the message is distorted by the speaker, well, good luck with that one. (also the responsibility for distortion is quite obviously on the shoulders of the speaker)

The desired state of communication is a dialogue - some sort of back and forth. This back and forth can not only figure out if any "distortions" (misinterpretations) are taking place, but can also enrich the original message or an idea. The problem with polls is that they restrict options of feedback, thus often just confirming the bias they started with. It's a monologue mascarading as a dialogue.

The only benefit of a poll instead of a discussion is not illumination, quite the opposite, it's asking for speed and optimisation (i.e. convenience) for the sake of illumination.

We've talked about polls. We disagree. It's ok.

(Although "shit in shit out" seems a bit unkind."
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Mike Jones
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skutsch wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
skutsch wrote:
Polls are about shedding light on the general attitudes of a certain population on a particular topic

So: shit in, shit out.
skutsch wrote:
I believe, however, that the distortion is an acceptable price for the light shed.

Illumination: zero.
Result: echo chamber.
skutsch wrote:
After all, any attempt to communicate is going to involve distortion.

BS.
What kind of distortion? Where does it happen? How does it happen?

If distortion happens on the receiving/interpretation end, it means some recipients can still figure the message out.
If the message is distorted by the speaker, well, good luck with that one. (also the responsibility for distortion is quite obviously on the shoulders of the speaker)

The desired state of communication is a dialogue - some sort of back and forth. This back and forth can not only figure out if any "distortions" (misinterpretations) are taking place, but can also enrich the original message or an idea. The problem with polls is that they restrict options of feedback, thus often just confirming the bias they started with. It's a monologue mascarading as a dialogue.

The only benefit of a poll instead of a discussion is not illumination, quite the opposite, it's asking for speed and optimisation (i.e. convenience) for the sake of illumination.

We've talked about polls. We disagree. It's ok.

(Although "shit in shit out" seems a bit unkind."


 
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Cris Whetstone
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skutsch wrote:
WetRock wrote:
mlcarter815 wrote:
sgosaric wrote:
Asking about preference about theme in boardgames is like asking about bass guitar lines in popular music. It matters in some genres more than other, some like synthesizer bass lines better, some don't care, but ultimately it's the songs which matter.

I like themes which are well executed in games which are well executed for what I want out of gaming. cool



I think you have summed up the most frustrating part about this whole line of discussion and skutch just ignores it.


Maybe every time we attempt to explain it to him his lack of grasp of the ideas manifests itself with the need to post a new thread/poll?

cry

Poll
What should I say to critics who complain that my polls do not properly lay out sufficiently nuanced responses and so the critics are unable to or unhappy about responding?
By its very nature, a poll, with a limited set of responses to single question, is going to lack nuance. Polls are not about nuance. If you want nuance, go watch French expressionist cinema or read James Joyce's collected works (in a day). Polls are about shedding light on the general attitudes of a certain population on a particular topic. In doing this, they must inevitably present a distorted interpretation of those attitudes. I believe, however, that the distortion is an acceptable price for the light shed. After all, any attempt to communicate is going to involve distortion. It is one of the tragedies of the human condition.
Bacon.
      36 answers
Poll created by skutsch



You missed the point. There are what, five current threads on this subject now? There have been several attempts to explain other positions than those you present in your polls. Now, rather than joining those discussions more fully, exploring the subject you simply ignore those points and start a new thread/poll biased by your own point of view.

And samo is dead on though that point had not occurred to me here until I read his post.
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CARL SKUTSCH
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Ok, since a few people are complaining about my polls I will explain why I find polls worthwhile.
First a note: You are under no obligation to find my polls worthwhile. I certainly hope some people find them at least slightly useful; or, perhaps more often, I hope people find them at least slightly amusing. I would never argue that everyone should appreciate all my polls, or even any of them.

Now I think polls in general can be a useful things. When you want to have a sense of what largish number of people think about something asking a poll can be a quick way to find that information out. Samo called this "shit in, shit out", which I assume means that the information going in is garbage and so the information going out is garbage (GIGO as they say in programming). However, I don't think the information going in is garbage (at least, not always), so the information coming out isn't either.

For example: Election polls. Campaigns pay for them because it's very important for them to find out what large groups of people think. The polls usually come pretty close to figuring out what people are going to do on election day. Nate Silver, the rock star pollster, using polling data, was able to predict 49 of 50 state outcomes in 2008 and 50 out of 50 in 2012. That's not garbage.

Outside politics, I, and many, many others, use Rotten Tomatoes aggregate ratings to help pick movies, fairly successfully. I've never thought well of a movie below 60. The ratings aren't perfect. Above 60 it's a bit iffier, sometimes I dislike movies that everyone else seems to like. Still, the system helps me screen out the worst dogs. (No need to go see London has fallen; 25% on Rotten Tomatoes.) Could I ask individuals what they think of movies? Sure, but that's pretty random. They may have had a bad day and hated a movie I would like (or that they would have liked on a more cheerful day). The aggregate ratings tend to be more reliable.

Yelp and Amazon work the same way. All you have is a simple 1-5 poll of users, and yet the results are fairly useful. Time and time again I go to some restaurant rated below 4 stars and it's mediocre. (Usually I go because my mother-in-law, who trusts word of mouth, picks them out.) I may not always like the 4.5 star restaurants but I often do. So again, we weed out the stinkers. Again, polling is useful.

On to gaming. Unlike some here, I always say I find the BGG ratings very useful. They help me to weed out the stinkers. It can take a little effort, and they're not the only thing I use, but they do help me pick what games I think I might like. At which point I start doing things like watching videos and reading rules. The ratings system lets me zero in on what games deserve more of my research time. Almost all my favorite games have an average rating (not geek rating) above 7. This user contributed polling data is useful, not garbage.

Now on to my polls. Sometimes I have questions I would like to have answered that I don't think can be answered simply by post and counter post. For example, in the third poll in this post I put up a list of the current (at the time of the poll) top 30 games ask how thematic people think each is. I found the resulting data interesting. In the original post, back in January, others did as well. I was surprised by some of the results; other confirmed my suspicions.

Polls are not a substitute for conversation, they do not eliminate conversation, sometimes (as others have said), they even spark further conversations. They are simply another set of data, that you can use or ignore, as you please. Also, they are far from "monologue masquerading as a dialogue" as Samo said. I am often surprised by the answers to my polls. In the above polls, for example, I didn't think quite so many people would think theme was moderately or very important (or that so few would only care about mechanics). Or in an earlier poll I was actually shocked that only 70% of people said that there was no such thing as "luck" in a predictive sense. (I mean, I thought BGG'ers were a more rational lot than that!) I was slightly less shocked, but still surprised, that more that in another poll more than 5% of people said they were ok with cheating. (Could you find that data out from people's posts? I don't think so.)

Penultimately, a good part of why I make polls is I find them amusing. I hope others do as well. Obviously some people, not so much.

And finally, my fans love my polls. Look at these polls from POLL: Does Skutsch Assail Us With Too Many Polls?. The only thing people liked more than my polls was bacon!
Poll
1. Does Skutsch overwhelm the community with polls delving into questions of minutiae, sucking our souls into the nether regions of the BGGverse, where we shall be forever doomed to choose between Agricola and Snakes & Ladders?

(Choose all that apply.)
Definitely!
Yes.
Maybe.
No.
Are you kidding? Skutsch doesn't toss enough polls our way.
Could you repeat the question?
Bacon.
2. BONUS: How would you characterize this poll about Skutch's polling habits?
Definitely has a Euro feel.
I'd say it's Ameritrashy, but I don't think Skutsch would find it offensive, and I certainly don't find it offensive.
It's Ameritrashy, which I have no problem with, but I can understand how a minority of BGG'ers might find it offensive.
It's totally Ameritrashy, which is a pejorative label that completely demeans Skutsch and everything he contributes to our community.
It's a brutal glob of the very worst Ameritrash, not Risk or Fortress America but rather at a Kim Kardashian/Storage Wars/World's Stupidest Police Chases level. It's demeaning and offensive to Skutsch, his entire family and the next three generations of his descendants-to-be.
What? No bacon? Why are you even talking to me?
      100 answers
Poll created by theapostlegreen
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J C Lawrence
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skutsch wrote:
When you want to have a sense of what largish number of people think about something asking a poll can be a quick way to find that information out. Samo called this "shit in, shit out", which I assume means that the information going in is garbage and so the information going out is garbage (GIGO as they say in programming). However, I don't think the information going in is garbage (at least, not always), so the information coming out isn't either.


I would agree with you if you had a way of correcting for selection bias, but you don't. As such your results are close to reading tea leaves.

Quote:
That's not garbage.


And reading tea leaves is garbage.

Quote:
I may not always like the 4.5 star...


Have you considered the normalising force of your ratings exposure, that you are effectively being trained into a normalised form and thus select against anything which deviates?

Quote:
They are simply another set of data, that you can use or ignore, as you please.


More accurately, noise masquerading as data.

Quote:
And finally, my fans love my polls.


Of course, popularity justifies everything.
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CARL SKUTSCH
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clearclaw wrote:
skutsch wrote:
And finally, my fans love my polls.


Of course, popularity justifies everything.

It was a joke poll with (so far) 91 votes. "Could you repeat the question?" captured 25 votes. I did not mean that last point seriously.

(Although, in America, popularity does justify everything baby!)
 
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J C Lawrence
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I may go too far the other way in my efforts to ensure that popularity, market sales, and the like are not considered at all. However if I were to err on that point, I'd rather go too far in excluding them than to allow them a presence.
 
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Ben Draper
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skutsch wrote:
For example: Election polls. Campaigns pay for them because it's very important for them to find out what large groups of people think. The polls usually come pretty close to figuring out what people are going to do on election day. Nate Silver, the rock star pollster, using polling data, was able to predict 49 of 50 state outcomes in 2008 and 50 out of 50 in 2012. That's not garbage.


Sure, but election polls are polling what a person chose on a poll. There is very little bias inherent to the data nor is there missing nuance. By their very nature, election polls are going to be more accurate than the types of polls you create.

Quote:
Outside politics, I, and many, many others, use Rotten Tomatoes aggregate ratings to help pick movies, fairly successfully. I've never thought well of a movie below 60.


Do you know how Rotten Tomatoes ratings are aggregated? Do you know the difference between Rotten Tomatoes ratings and Metacritic ratings? Again, the types of information that these sites are displaying are very different from the information that your polls are displaying.

Quote:
The ratings aren't perfect. Above 60 it's a bit iffier, sometimes I dislike movies that everyone else seems to like. Still, the system helps me screen out the worst dogs.


In fact, that is exactly what Rotten Tomatoes is good at, screening out dogs. Because of the way the information is aggregated (again, look it up if you don't know), high ratings are not indicators that a movie is good, just that it isn't bad.

Quote:
Yelp and Amazon work the same way.


Do you mean they work the same as each other, or the same as Rotten Tomatoes? Either way, they don't. They definitely don't work the same way as Rotten Tomatoes. The whole model is different. But even between each other, there are large differences. The biggest is that there is a self-selection bias for who gives ratings. Think about what type of experience is likely to elicit a review of a restaurant as compared to a review of an Amazon product. This difference will lead to a difference in scores even for "equivalently good" restaurants/products.

Quote:
Now on to my polls. Sometimes I have questions I would like to have answered that I don't think can be answered simply by post and counter post. For example, in the third poll in this post I put up a list of the current (at the time of the poll) top 30 games ask how thematic people think each is. I found the resulting data interesting. In the original post, back in January, others did as well. I was surprised by some of the results; other confirmed my suspicions.


Did you define your use of "thematic" for the poll? If so, do you know if all poll-taker used such a definition? If not, do you know who took the poll and what their definition for "thematic" is?

How is the data useful again?
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Check out Clockwork Wars. It's a pretty darn good dudes on a hex map Euro'ish steampunk game. Quick and fun.
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Perhaps it was not your intention but you come off as fairly condescending.

Um, yes, I know the difference between how Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes work. I know they work differently than Amazon and Yelp. Yes, I know what selection bias is. And I'm also familiar with signal and noise.

The purpose of my points was not to prove that my polls are brilliant (they are far, far, far from brilliant) but to answer Samo's assertion that polls as such are not the way to find out information, which should be elicited through post and counter post: "The desired state of communication is a dialogue". So I gave a long list of useful polls that provide useful information.

So if you were trying to prove that my polls don't provide anywhere near as much useful information as the ones I mentioned I could have saved you some time by admitting right off the bat: Yes, they don't, they're light-hearted polls on a hobby gaming site! One of their main purposes (such a serious word, "purpose") is to amuse and entertain. If you aren't amused, ah well, different jokes for different folks.

BennyD wrote:
How is the data useful again?


I find it interesting. Not scientifically valid, not providing the answers to all things gaming, just interesting. My polls can spark debate. After I post a poll--on theme, let's say--people can, and do, argue about what it means, whether my terms are valid, etc. etc.

For example, I mentioned my polls on cheating. I think they are interesting. I don't think the data is meaningless. It was not surprising to me that most people surveyed disliked cheating, but I was surprised by the size of the minority vote who viewed cheating with less disapprobation than I do. That was news. To me. Useful. To me. And, since I assume there are some folks out there who are at least somewhat like me, I think they found it interesting as well. Anyone who thought it was pointless didn't have to answer the poll.

Poll
What do you think about other players in your game(s) cheating?
I despise all cheating. I would do my best to not play with cheaters again.
I dislike cheating, I'd make it clear to cheaters that their actions were unacceptable and watch them carefully in the future.
I disapprove of cheating, and I'd probably point out a cheaters "mistakes," but I wouldn't shun the cheater.
I don't think you should cheat, but I don't think I care that much if other players do it. They play their game, I play mine.
It's not really a big deal for me, one way or the other.
Since sometimes I cheat a bit myself, I'm not going to hold other people accountable.
Cheating is fine, it's all part of the game.
      372 answers
Poll created by skutsch


Poll: How bad is cheating?
What comes closest to describing your feelings about cheating?
It's utterly beyond the pale; I'm more likely to cheat on my spouse/boy/girlfriend than I am to cheat in a game.
It's wrong, and I would never do it, but there are worse things to worry about.
Look it's just a game, if we're all having fun, what's the big deal?
I think cheating is part of the challenge; if they did't catch me, they deserve to lose.
      1046 answers
Poll created by skutsch
 
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Check out Clockwork Wars. It's a pretty darn good dudes on a hex map Euro'ish steampunk game. Quick and fun.
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clearclaw wrote:
I may go too far the other way in my efforts to ensure that popularity, market sales, and the like are not considered at all. However if I were to err on that point, I'd rather go too far in excluding them than to allow them a presence.

I clearly go farther in the other direction. I don't think my choices are dictated by popularity but I definitely take popularity into account when tracking down games I might like. I do, however, have a few games that are not very well known. HoldFast: Russia 1941-1942 only has 140 ratings; its sister games on Korea and North Africa only have 51 and 16 ratings, respectively.

Just out of curiosity: Do you see a lot of movies? If you do, how do you decide between movies to see? Hollywood produces over 500 movies a year, other countries produce far more (India and Nigeria are the two leading film producers in the world). How can one decide what to watch without using popularity, critics, marketing campaigns, etc.? I suppose one could only watch films by those directors one likes (begging the question of how you found out about those directors in the first place) but then one would miss out on new talented directors.
 
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