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Dave Heberer
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I've seen this exchange happen so many times it's trite. Someone comes and says they've played a game once or twice (or maybe even couldn't finish it) and they found something they thought was just unfun, unfair, or just plain stupid. Whether they state their opinion in nice tones and accept that they are probably getting something wrong or they state their opinion as inviolable fact there are a group of people that will come and tell them they have no right to an opinion or to ask questions until they play the game more.

It's pretty rare for these dismissive comments to have anything like a quantity of games that need to be played before your opinion counts. But I was wondering why people even think this kind of comment is either useful to the OP or how they think it's going to help the situation at all.

If I'm having a bad time with a game, especially if I got a rule wrong, I don't want to know that I need to put in more time with what I think is crap in order to establish that it's crap. I've formed my opinion about the game and if I'm posting then I'm trying to determine why I'm different. Telling me that I'm ignorant isn't really going to get me to play the game again and realize the potential unless the underlying cause of the perceived problem is addressed.

So I'm asking people if the gist of your message is to tell someone that they are obviously wrong because they are new to the game please don't bother. It's an empty statement that doesn't do anything other than marginalize the OP.

If people genuinely don't know what I'm talking about, they must spend all their time in RSP or chit-chat, cause any game in the top 200 is going to have numerous threads talking about imbalance and degenerate strategies. The games that have a dedicated vocal following usually are the ones that show the highest intolerance to heresy, but it's pretty widespread.
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Bruce Padget
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Thank you. I've noticed this, too. If you can be dismissive of a poster after one post, but can't be dismissive of a game after a single play, that can only mean that we value games more than people.
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Mark Buetow
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You must be one of those rare breed of people who have opinions that are wrong. devil
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Jennifer Schlickbernd
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I understand where you are coming from. I politely disagree with it though. Essen 2010, Vinhos was released. I played Vinhos a couple of times and was really disappointed in it. But instead of disparaging it, I posted a thread asking people where I was wrong in my opinion. I got a lot of eye opening feedback, and the designer did as well.

Too many times people play a game once or twice, criticize it heavily and then it turns out that they didn't play a rule properly and they walk away with their tails between their legs so to speak. I feel that the better way is to do what I did. Say "Hey I'm not getting this game, what do you guys see in how I'm playing or experiencing this". That way you aren't criticizing the game and you show that you are open to discussion about it.

Getting on here and saying that such and such game sucks after playing it once or twice is simply trolling. The fans of the game are always going to strike back and drama ensues. None of this is necessary if you don't criticize the game but describe how it didn't work for you personally.
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Dave Heberer
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I'm actually doubly blessed with both wrong-headed opinions and a well-developed sense of vengeance.

I got friends all over, let me tell you.

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Dave Heberer
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jschlickbernd wrote:
I understand where you are coming from. I politely disagree with it though. Essen 2010, Vinhos was released. I played Vinhos a couple of times and was really disappointed in it. But instead of disparaging it, I posted a thread asking people where I was wrong in my opinion. I got a lot of eye opening feedback, and the designer did as well.

Too many times people play a game once or twice, criticize it heavily and then it turns out that they didn't play a rule properly and they walk away with their tails between their legs so to speak. I feel that the better way is to do what I did. Say "Hey I'm not getting this game, what do you guys see in how I'm playing or experiencing this". That way you aren't criticizing the game and you show that you are open to discussion about it.

Getting on here and saying that such and such game sucks after playing it once or twice is simply trolling. The fans of the game are always going to strike back and drama ensues. None of this is necessary if you don't criticize the game but describe how it didn't work for you personally.


Coming on and saying a game sucks and not really citing reasons for that is going to get you some (maybe deserved) verbal abuse. But I can point you to dozens of threads that are kicked off politely enough saying that they think a game has problems and citing what they think is the problem area. Are they not allowed to ask about a game, point out what they think is too strong or weak?

If you are a fan of the game, and want other people to like it I believe the helpful reaction is to try and determine what they person did/understood incorrectly. The unhelpful reaction is to tell the person they need to suffer some more before they can talk about a game.

The way over the top example of this is the crazy thread dealing with A Few Acres of Snow. The first 200 comments were various bashing on others for not being qualified to have an opinion. Do you really believe that saying you need more experience with a game you aren't enjoying playing is a useful message to someone? What do you think will be accomplished even if they internalize this message?

I do understand your point, and I agree it is hard to form a truly impartial and well-thought opinion on something without playing a few times. But what rational person will do that without hope of something changing? How does telling someone to suck it up help them gain any understanding or fortify them to try again?

*Edited to include the last paragraph
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Jennifer Schlickbernd
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Honestly you didn't seem to understand my point at all The reviews that I have seen that are heavily criticized are the ones where the person states that they've played the game once, state that the game sucks, and then gets upset when their opinion is challenged. The people who have said they don't like the game and here's why are given a far better reception. I've seen this pretty consistently throughout the years. It's one thing to say you don't like a game after one or two plays, but it's another thing to denounce the game entirely and say that it's badly designed or that it's terrible or other pejoratives, especially when that game has a rating of over 6.5 or so and/or has established fans.

A Few Acres of Snow is generating so much churn because in many people's opinion including mine btw, Wallace did not do a great job of playtesting and designing the game. Because it's a deckbuilder, some people are going to be perfectly fine with the rules, but other people are going to be able to discern the problems with the game fairly early. It's really a matter of experience with the deckbuilding genre, including Magic. Magic/strong Dominion players would identify the issues with the game right away but wargamers who've never played a deckbuilder would not.

So you are going to get two sides talking past each other and churn is going to result. Also keep in mind that many of us early adopters paid $70 for a game that doesn't work with the rules he wrote. This makes people especially angry about that particular game. It also represents a collision between Euro and wargame interests in the forum, something that rarely turns out well. I don't find the Few Acres of Snow experience to be typical. It's a storm of issues coming together that doesn't happen often.

So I don't think you can take that example and extrapolate it across the 'Geek. Most of the time, people who say that they didn't like a game because of whatever get a fairly respectful reception. It's those who say that a game is terrible or sucks or whatever that don't.

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Kenny VenOsdel
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Well I agree with both of you!

I've seen cases of people simply asking "Hey, what's up with this in game X?" and get beat back and forth by responders telling them to either play the game more and they'll see or shut up and find a new game.

I've also seen people post threads about how terrible of a design a game is after playing twice and not really liking it, or finding some fatal flaw on play 2 that the designer didn't see (usually a rules mistake by said player).

I think that sometimes people's complaints or critiques of a game they've only played a couple times are taken to be more serious or harsh than what the OP intended. That's one of the blessings of the interenet. A sentence that sounds mild to you will be read with harshest expression by someone else. I would guess that a lot of the threads Dave is referring to are examples of this combined with people reading the following replies harsher than intended and things devolving.

It's not fun but all you can really do is give the OP an appropriate and kind response and ignore the others. Hopefully they'll latch onto your post and get some good feedback that they wanted.
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Tom Wright
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bapadget wrote:
Thank you. I've noticed this, too. If you can be dismissive of a poster after one post, but can't be dismissive of a game after a single play, that can only mean that we value games more than people.


Wait, we don't value games more than people?
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Russell
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you are entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts.
And the fact is that you is wrong!
 
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