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Subject: Board Gaming etiquette and table talk! Recommendations? rss

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Charles Fletcher

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Maryland
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I have a question that consistently gets brought up during gaming sessions. How much talk should be allowed during gaming sessions in regard to strategy or suggesting strategy to people with whom you have forged alliances with during a game? What constitutes over assisting a novice player? How much competitive talk is too much?!

HOW HAS NO ONE EVER CREATE A BOOK/WEB COMIC ON THIS?!?! OR HAVE THEY?! AAAAHH! Wait, why am I yelling... Any clarification on this would be appreciated.

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patrick somers
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Letting someone know all their options is usually okay, but flat out saying "you should do this" is too much.
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Stew Woods
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All of these are entirely personal decisions which tend to be shaped by the group of people you are playing with - the more you play with the same people, the clearer and more well-defined those understandings will be.

Consequently, there's no right answer.

But don't help that guy. He's a dick. whistle
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Jordan Fraser
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In my group, frequent table talk is the norm. Sometimes only half the game takes place on the board. I understand that this isn't ideal for every group, but we're a pretty tight group of friends - the psychological element, and the subtle/not-so-subtle manipulation is fundamental. As such, I don't have a problem with it at all, but as a group you have to decide what everyone is comfortable with and stick to it.
 
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Charles Fletcher

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Hahaha, this seems to always be the case.. No one has a problem with it until it start working against their favor.
 
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Andrew Maxwell
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I really don't think you can make any generalisations about this. It seems to vary wildly from group to group.
 
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Ladson
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The good news is that many game designers theses days are building the interaction into the rules. Some games are explicitly encouraged to be free-for-alls, while others, especially games with co-op elements, are designed with what I'll call anti-Alpha rules. That is, rules designed to allow less outspoken people make their game decisions without interference from overbearing personalities.

Apart from that, the options are to either set rules for the game group yourselves, or simply gravitate to players you can get along with.
 
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Adam Mantha
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If you are playing something like Risk, and a novice player has teamed up with an advanced player, it is bound to get hairy for people not in that alliance. There seems to be something unfair when instead of playing against 2 people, you are playing against 1 player directly and through proxy. I don't like those situations.

I think there are two things you should do:

1) Ask the novice player if they feel they are not getting a chance to make moves they want to make (i.e. do they feel like a slave to the advanced player).

2) If the novice player says they do feel like a slave (or something like that) then it is important to make it known to the advanced player that they are ruining gameplay not only for you, but for their ally. If the novice player genuinely has no problem being told what to do, then you need to lower your expectations and realize that the game you are playing is not going to be fair and you should not feel overly competitive--after all, you don't have two colours that you can control!

In closing, games are supposed to be fun, whether intellectually or viscerally, and that should be the goal. It is sometimes hopeless to change others in your game group, but you can change your expectations.
 
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Roger Dodger
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Is it cheating to encourage your kids to gang up on their mother's monster in King of Tokyo? whistle
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Dale Thomson
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One of the things I love about board games is the opportunity to use table talk to your advantage. You are playing the other people, not just the game, and that is what makes most games interesting. Of course this also depends on the group.
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Brandon Kempf
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No talking allowed at the game table, that's why I only play with

 
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Enrico Viglino
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Genghis_Khan wrote:
I have a question that consistently gets brought up during gaming sessions. How much talk should be allowed during gaming sessions in regard to strategy or suggesting strategy to people with whom you have forged alliances with during a game? What constitutes over assisting a novice player? How much competitive talk is too much?!



Most games which actually allow for alliances tend to specify
when and where it is acceptable to negotiate.

For games which do not, generally the 'time allowed to think' more
or less includes such discussion. If that's unlimited, people can
proffer advice, so long as it is open. I'd say the person whose turn
it is has the right to curtail discussion however. But this kind of
thing is always more of a group agreed protocol.

For games which do NOT specifically allow for such alliances, there's
a whole question whether any table talk is applicable. My feeling is
that it is more effort than it's worth to try and define what coughs
and groans constitute table talk - so either a time-limit or no limit
at all.


Vacabck wrote:
No talking allowed at the game table....


Yeah - this is pretty much the only viable option. No breathing,
sighing, or making other noises either. Every such action can be
utilized to help sway people.
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Stew Woods
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In the end, all games exist only to serve the metagame.
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Jarrett Dunn
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Genghis_Khan wrote:
HOW HAS NO ONE EVER CREATE A BOOK/WEB COMIC ON THIS?!?! OR HAVE THEY?! AAAAHH! Wait, why am I yelling... Any clarification on this would be appreciated.



They "kinda" have? Knights of the Dinner Table, more RPG related but you definitely get the idea.

http://www.kodtweb.com/
 
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Katherine Boag
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Often at least one player (if not all) is learning the rules, or has not played in a while. The other situation that I play a lot in is groups with a mixture of children, teens, and adults, with varying skill levels. This means that often I or another experienced player will be helpfully pointing out options to the less experienced players. Which often results in them doing better than the experienced players, with a frequent cry of 'why am I helping you again?!'
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