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Subject: Add catergory "microgame" rss

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Kenny VenOsdel
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It seems these are becoming one of the latest trends. It would be nice to have a category for them with a page to edit a description of what actually constitutes a microgame. Plus it would make researching them easier.

I couldn't locate anything about this hence the thread. Feel free to point out my missing things.
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Ogre Designer's Edition

Ogre Microgame (Metagaming)

It's quite an old type of product. Thirty-five years before the latest Ogre Designer's Edition came the original Ogre "Microgame" (which could be a trademark). It was the little booklet shown, with a folded paper map, and a counter sheet, all in a clear plastic envelope or, later, a zip-lock bag. (Damn! I may have a first edition here!)

So, of course, some people think of those as "microgames". Maybe some people think of games with few components. What are you thinking of?
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Tim M-L
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There have been threads along these lines before. How would you define a minigame in a useful way?

My definition is "something marked as such", which is pretty useless as a definition.
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Shawn George
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Unfortunately, the term "microgame" doesn't have a good definition. It's rather arbitrary at this point.

Is it a game that's played with a small deck of cards? By that definition, Euchre is a microgame.
Is it a game that's played with a low number of overall components? Then The Resistance is a microgame.
Is it a game that's extremely portable? Is Hive Pocket a microgame?
Is it a game that plays in 10 minutes or less? That qualifies Escape: The Curse of the Temple as a microgame.
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Walt
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Here's one definition: http://micro.brainiac.com/

Under $15 (1999, so maybe $20 MSRP, now)
In a zip-lock bag
Fits in a large pocket (like the zippered pocket of a backpack)
A complete game (not an expansion)

Maybe:
Paper components only
 
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Seems like the sort of thing that may be useful as a family.
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Shawn George
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Tall_Walt wrote:
Maybe:
Paper components only


This would rule out Love Letter, Council of Verona, and Coup, which I would consider to be the "big 3" microgames right now. All of them contain non-paper components (Love Letter has wooden cubes, CoV has wooden discs, Coup has cardboard tokens).
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Kenny VenOsdel
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I tend to think of it as a game with few components be they cards, chips, counters, maps, or whatever else that utilize a relatively small amount of space. I'm not sure what the amount would be but I'd say somewhere around 24 or less though the specific number is subjective and would never likely be fully concrete.

As an abstract concept it is simply a game that is designed to purposefully have very few components so a condensed Descent with 20 miniatures and 30 tiles still wouldn't qualify as it's goal is to be a smaller version of Descent.
 
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Kenny VenOsdel
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indigopotter wrote:
Seems like the sort of thing that may be useful as a family.


I thought about that but I've been told families will be phased out, plus it's as much a category as "animals" for instance. Families seem more useful for things like "all of Tasty Minstrel's releases" or "all the Carc expansions."
 
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Tim M-L
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Minimal number of components and play space is not going to encapsulate the current microgame trend without also including tons of other games like Tic-Tac-Toe, Kalah, or Three-Card Monte
 
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Shouldn't "microgame" be a property of a version, not a game?

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Kenny VenOsdel
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timlillig wrote:
Minimal number of components and play space is not going to encapsulate the current microgame trend without also including tons of other games like Tic-Tac-Toe, Kalah, or Three-Card Monte


I don't see a problem with that really, unless you consider my statement above that a microgame is one designed specifically to have those factors in and of themselves, not just one that happens to have them.
 
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Kenny VenOsdel
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Werbaer wrote:
Shouldn't "microgame" be a property of a version, not a game?



That would be the same as saying that M:TG is a deckbuilder. It is ignoring what the modern definition is in favor of a strict interpretation of the words used.
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kvenosdel wrote:
That would be the same as saying that M:TG is a deckbuilder. It is ignoring what the modern definition is in favor of a strict interpretation of the words used.

"The" modern definition is a murky concept. For many people, a "microgame" is a game from the existing families Metagaming Microgames series and Dwarfstar Games, and this recent "latest trend" is abusing/coopting an already existing term.
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kvenosdel wrote:
timlillig wrote:
Minimal number of components and play space is not going to encapsulate the current microgame trend without also including tons of other games like Tic-Tac-Toe, Kalah, or Three-Card Monte


I don't see a problem with that really, unless you consider my statement above that a microgame is one designed specifically to have those factors in and of themselves, not just one that happens to have them.


What is the difference between "designed to have those factors" and "happens to have them"? I don't understand the distinction you are making there.
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Kenny VenOsdel
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timlillig wrote:
kvenosdel wrote:
timlillig wrote:
Minimal number of components and play space is not going to encapsulate the current microgame trend without also including tons of other games like Tic-Tac-Toe, Kalah, or Three-Card Monte


I don't see a problem with that really, unless you consider my statement above that a microgame is one designed specifically to have those factors in and of themselves, not just one that happens to have them.


What is the difference between "designed to have those factors" and "happens to have them"? I don't understand the distinction you are making there.


As I said above, it is an abstract concept of microgame and not necessarily part of what would be the actual definition of what it consists of, that would be up for debate.

The difference would be a purposeful goal that your game had few components, took up little space, had a small cost etc when you set out to design vs. picking a game that happens to meet those criteria (eg Tic-Tac-Toe) but wasn't actually attempting to achieve that goal.

I don't think that a category of microgame need have a solid defintion though. There is nothing wrong with stating what things people consider microgames and what the differences in opinion are. It would be more helpful to have them collected somehow rather than sit and debate what they actually are as a definition.

This conversation hasn't helped me find more microgames!
 
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russ wrote:
kvenosdel wrote:
That would be the same as saying that M:TG is a deckbuilder. It is ignoring what the modern definition is in favor of a strict interpretation of the words used.

"The" modern definition is a murky concept. For many people, a "microgame" is a game from the existing families Metagaming Microgames series and Dwarfstar Games, and this recent "latest trend" is abusing/coopting an already existing term.


It sounds more like those lines fit the definition and would be included in the description of the category to point out the history of microgame development.
 
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Simon Lundström
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Do a GeekList instead.

Not every way to categorize games should be categories.

The more diffuse ones do better as GeekLists. Well, provided we can actually try to categorize GeekLists so people can sort away the "Games I happened to find in my armpit a midsummer night's morning" GeekLists.
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kvenosdel wrote:
russ wrote:
kvenosdel wrote:
That would be the same as saying that M:TG is a deckbuilder. It is ignoring what the modern definition is in favor of a strict interpretation of the words used.

"The" modern definition is a murky concept. For many people, a "microgame" is a game from the existing families Metagaming Microgames series and Dwarfstar Games, and this recent "latest trend" is abusing/coopting an already existing term.


It sounds more like those lines fit the definition and would be included in the description of the category to point out the history of microgame development.

Perhaps, except the modern "movement" or whatever seems to want it to be about games with very few components (e.g. you mentioned 24 components as a rough upper limit), whereas the Metagaming Microgames often had 100 or more components. They were typically like small wargames. And often more complex rules than the little games in the modern trend.
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kvenosdel wrote:
I've been told families will be phased out


Whoa, what's this, who's been saying what, what's going to replace them?
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Kaffedrake wrote:
kvenosdel wrote:
I've been told families will be phased out


Whoa, what's this, who's been saying what, what's going to replace them?


It was mentioned awhile back by an admin but I don't recall when.
 
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Zimeon wrote:
Do a GeekList instead.

Not every way to categorize games should be categories.

The more diffuse ones do better as GeekLists. Well, provided we can actually try to categorize GeekLists so people can sort away the "Games I happened to find in my armpit a midsummer night's morning" GeekLists.


I agree, but I think that the current trend of microgames as I have roughly defined above warrants categorization. Geeklists don't help me search the database for them.
 
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Kaffedrake wrote:
kvenosdel wrote:
I've been told families will be phased out


Whoa, what's this, who's been saying what, what's going to replace them?


Hopefully something that makes more sense than the current "families".

Create something like "Franchise" and use it what what it's called.

Then erase all the "Contains horses" and let that be personal GeekLists.
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kvenosdel wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
Do a GeekList instead.

Not every way to categorize games should be categories.

The more diffuse ones do better as GeekLists. Well, provided we can actually try to categorize GeekLists so people can sort away the "Games I happened to find in my armpit a midsummer night's morning" GeekLists.


I agree, but I think that the current trend of microgames as I have roughly defined above warrants categorization. Geeklists don't help me search the database for them.


Well, they do, you just can't make an advanced search with microgame in it. I guess that's what you're after.
 
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kvenosdel wrote:
It seems these are becoming one of the latest trends. It would be nice to have a category for them with a page to edit a description of what actually constitutes a microgame. Plus it would make researching them easier.

I couldn't locate anything about this hence the thread. Feel free to point out my missing things.


+1

I want to search for games with few components that pack into a small amount of space.

There is already a feature of the database to put in the size and weight of a version. But I don't think it is searchable. Make it searchable.

Add a field that in number of components and make it searchable.

Now I don't need to define "microgame" for everyone, but I can find the games I'm looking for.
 
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