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BoardGameGeek» Forums » Board Game Design » Design Theory

Subject: High level thinking, what makes an action. rss

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Stewart Sinex
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I am trying to work up an artical on what is the anatomy of an action in a game. I am looking for some research or thoughts on the subjects or a least some condenses of ideas from people who also think about this kind of thing.

Thanks for your help.
 
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Jeremy Lennert
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An action is a thing that happens.

You may want to pick a slightly more specific topic.
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Based upon my poor understanding of history, science, and ethics...
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Or doesn't happen, if by choice.

Passing, for example, is an action.

I would argue that when given the option of responding to an opponent 's action, and you choose not to, you have acted.
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Stewart Sinex
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I'm looking at the steps we go through when we take an action. I know it feels a bit high minded and academic but it grabed my thoughts lately and I don't want to be speaking just out of my own head.
 
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Perry Fergin
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"Eating meat is a difficult moral decision. Because it's stolen. (The meat.) You should apologize."
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1) Stimulus: Something occurs that we need to respond to. This can also be something that doesn't happen that elicits a response, such as sitting around in a room for a long time, and getting bored.

2) Decision to Act: Something about the stimulus creates sufficient motivation for us to respond.

3) Contemplation: We think about what to do to respond. This could take a fraction of a second, (ball flying towards us: Catch!) or a long time (what to do to relieve the boredom?).

4) Action/ Response: We do whatever we decided to do.

5) Analysis: We examine what we did, and it's effects. This can also take a few seconds, or a prolonged period of time. It even occurs while we are in the midst of doing the action itself.

6) Repeat: The action and analysis themselves take the place of the Stimulus and Decision to Act for our next action.
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Nathaniel Grisham

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Oh goody, semantics...

I don't know if you can have a universal definition here. Each game defines it differently. Often, an "action" is defined as a specific thing happening, someone played an action card, someone made an attack, etc. but there are often other things to do that we might call an "action," but are not defined as such in the context of that game.

Trying to put a definition to something that people generally already know just confuses me, mostly.

Anyway, now that I have read what you are looking for a couple times, I think that an action in a game is when a player makes a decision. This is when players have the chance to interact with the game or with other players. So, the steps to taking an action might be the same steps for making any decision. Players analyze the cost/benefits of a choice and then make the decision. Then they can get some amount of feedback to help with the next choice.
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BT Carpenter
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Look here for inspiration:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OODA_loop
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Stewart Sinex
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This kind of thing is exactly what I am looking fore! Thanks.
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Jeremy Lennert
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3geargames wrote:
This kind of thing is exactly what I am looking fore! Thanks.

FYI, I would not have guessed from your post that this is what you had in mind. I thought you were talking about actions defined by the game system, not about the decision-making process that the player uses internally to choose among them.
 
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Stewart Sinex
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I didn't want to lead the question.


Aaaand I am without my normal spellchecker.
Sorry.
 
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Stewart Sinex
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Ok so I thought you would like to see the artical. Thanks for your help.

https://3geargames.wordpress.com/2016/09/19/what-is-an-actio... when I am near a computer I will try to add this to bgg blogs.

 
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