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Subject: A greatly themed game? LOL! rss

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Hardy
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Frank Hamrick wrote:
If you really want to increase your appetite and appreciation for this game, read the definitive history of the Lewis and Clark exposition

Of course, the game is not a close simulation of actual historical events, but it does convey the theme better than most Euro games.


It's not only not a close simulation, the game simply doesn't fit the historical theme at all.

First, there were no multiple rivaling expeditions, but only one.
But let's say we accept this deviation from history and assume for the sake of the game, that there could have been several rivaling expeditions.

But then, what were the goals of this expedition historically?

1) Find a good route to travel across Louisiana to the pacific
2) Explore the land / make maps
3) Investigate geological properties of the land
4) Study flora and fauna
5) Study Indians in that area
6) Build connections useful for building up trade later
7) Return with all the gathered knowledge


Now let's see in comparison what the Goals in the game are, which will bring you victory:

1) Be the first to reach Fort Clatsop (no matter how).

Wow, now I can see why everybody's raving about the great thematic implementation in this game. shake
Do I need to comment further? I think not.


Don't get me wrong, I like the game, and I like that is another VP salad, but a mix of WP, deckbuilding, trading and race.
But is Lewis&Clark a good fit thematically for this game (the designer created the game with a totally different theme in his head and only later applied the L&C theme on it)? No, at at all!
Why didn't you call the game Amundsen&Scott? Then the setting of different expeditions, racing to be first at given place, would wonderfully have fitted.
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Ken Thibodeau
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No Natives in Antarctic
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Hardy
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fardoche wrote:
No Natives in Antarctic


Penguins instead.
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Fernando Robert Yu
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It's believable enough and methinks it would get a few people to actually research more about the event.

Just thematic enough for me, but yep it could be another racing game where you could substitute other kinds of "helpers" instead of the Indians.
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James Clarke
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How about a modern day expedition, assisted by ghosts of the great explorers?

I think I could buy into that concept.
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Andrew MacLeod
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And when, exactly, are we playing Churchill again?
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Admittedly, Lewis&Clark is not dripping with theme; but let's put it this way, actaion:

I hate games with a pasted on theme. I love Lewis&Clark. On my annual trip to a very large used-book store (J.W. Doull's) in Halifax, Nova Scotia, I scoured the shelves (or stacks!) for books about Lewis&Clark, so inspired was I by the game.

Do I need to comment further? I think not.
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Frank Hamrick
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Actually, their greatest goal was to beat the English and the French in finding a way across the continent to the Pacific. Yes, it was a race. Jefferson was concerned that the English or French would get there first, and gain control of the trade (as well as control of the land).

WHILE they were going, it also became important (it made sense) to ...
2) Explore the land / make maps
3) Investigate geological properties of the land
4) Study flora and fauna
5) Study Indians in that area
6) Build connections useful for building up trade later
7) Return with all the gathered knowledge

But all of those reasons were secondary (though important) to the MAIN purpose. You could say that # 6 was closer to the main purpose, but the urgency of the task was to get there first - even the British and French were aware of that, and an effort was made to stop them, but failed because the L&C team got past the area where the French (or was it the British) tried to intercept/stop them.

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Andrew MacLeod
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Frank Hamrick wrote:
Actually, their greatest goal was to beat the English and the French in finding a way across the continent to the Pacific. Yes, it was a race. Jefferson was concerned that the English or French would get there first, and gain control of the trade (as well as control of the land).

WHILE they were going, it also became important (it made sense) to ...
2) Explore the land / make maps
3) Investigate geological properties of the land
4) Study flora and fauna
5) Study Indians in that area
6) Build connections useful for building up trade later
7) Return with all the gathered knowledge

But all of those reasons were secondary (though important) to the MAIN purpose. You could say that # 6 was closer to the main purpose, but the urgency of the task was to get there first - even the British and French were aware of that, and an effort was made to stop them, but failed because the L&C team got past the area where the French (or was it the British) tried to intercept/stop them.



?

The French were no longer a factor in North American exploration (or imperial ambitions).

As for the British, they made it there first, when Alexander Mackenzie reached the Pacific coast in 1793, over a decade before Lewis&Clark did!

Rule Britannia, and all that......
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Guillaume
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Thematic does not mean historically accurate. The theme is great; recruiting people, meeting Indians, buying equipment, building your expedition, going hunting, the super nice art... the whole game drips with theme. I love the theme and I love the game. Who cares if it wasn't a race historically. Every game has thematic issues in the mechanisms or compared to reality.
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C Bazler
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Yes, I think the game captures the theme wonderfully, if not the actual historical events that inspired it. I know of very few race games that try to simulate the the problems of carrying too many goods, or hiring too many people, while making a direct parallel between the efficiency of your "engine" to the efficiency of your party. The historical flavor is great, especially the intense efforts made by the creators to include biographical details of all the people on the cards and trying to tie their card abilities to things they may have done in real life.
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Michael S
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Trevor Kindree
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I couldn't agree more, the theme is simply pasted on, and I have major issues with the historical inaccuracies.

Even though the whole historical data was a work of fiction, absolutely NONE of it was present in this game. There was no Daily Planet, no Kryptonite, no newspapers, no villains, no mention of Superman at all! Hell, they even spelled the name wrong, it's Lois, not Lewis! I mean, geeze, what gives?
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Timothy Goddard
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amacleod wrote:
Frank Hamrick wrote:
You could say that # 6 was closer to the main purpose, but the urgency of the task was to get there first - even the British and French were aware of that, and an effort was made to stop them, but failed because the L&C team got past the area where the French (or was it the British) tried to intercept/stop them.



?

The French were no longer a factor in North American exploration (or imperial ambitions).

As for the British, they made it there first, when Alexander Mackenzie reached the Pacific coast in 1793, over a decade before Lewis&Clark did!

Rule Britannia, and all that......


It was the Spanish who tried to stop them as described, and the British were less than thrilled as well. Some details: http://history.nd.gov/exhibits/lewisclark/foreignreaction.ht...

There were lots of goals, but to pretend that speed was not a factor is a little silly.

On the other hand, before this came out, I had in my mind an idea for a game based on Lewis & Clark (or, more likely, a number of American expeditions of the era--to get around the "it wasn't a competition" issue) where you had to balance speed and discovery. That would go more to the OP's particular point about theme.

However, as someone who is a huge L&C fan, it seems to me that the customization of the character cards based on actual people alone is enough theme to make the effort praiseworthy, let alone everything else that has been mentioned.
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Andrew MacLeod
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timgoddard wrote:


It was the Spanish who tried to stop them as described, and the British were less than thrilled as well. Some details: http://history.nd.gov/exhibits/lewisclark/foreignreaction.ht...



I can assure you: if they knew what exactly was going on, the aboriginal nations L&C encountered would have been the least thrilled of all! Come to think of it, a good number of them were less than thrilled, even at the time!

There goes the neighbourhood......soblue
 
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John Bradshaw
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The game is highly thematic. If it was being lauded as a simulation then yes there are many historical inaccuracies that could be noted, but it's not a simulation. All it has to do is convey a feel for the subject and it's time.

And boy does it do that! The Wild West! Trappers, hardy pioneers opening up new territory, hunters, horses, canoes, rivers, mountains, Indians - Indians! Not "Native Americans" mark you - goodness me - I don't think those movies of my childhood would have caught on if they had been about "Cowboys and Native Americans"! I hope the word doesn't upset people but for me the word "Indian" conveys a nobility I find entirely lacking in the term "Native American" which seems to me to be an academic, intellectual invention, in an attempt to absolve some of their own guilty feelings, of the people who annihilated the indigenous cultures in the first place. (I don't wish to stir controversy here - words mean different things to different people in different societies - but I'm interested to note that in polls, a good many indigenous people have indicated a preference for the term American Indian.)

Anyway - I digress - the game drips with theme - more so than a good many Euros - I love the historical notes given in the rules - I don't expect or demand historical accuracy in such a game - just to have my interest in the era piqued - and the game has done that in spades for me. If I want accuracy - if I want to learn more about the issue - I'll consult works of reference not games, and this game has prompted me to do that, which is an indication of just how strongly it has conveyed it's theme to me.

A greatly themed game indeed. I can only assume that the LOL in the thread title must mean "Laid on Lavishly"!
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Andrew MacLeod
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Seghillian wrote:
I hope the word doesn't upset people but for me the word "Indian" conveys a nobility I find entirely lacking in the term "Native American".....


For me, the word "Indian" generally conveys the sense of an inhabitant of a certain country in southern Asia.....whistle
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Stefan Kaiser
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kelendil wrote:
Thematic does not mean historically accurate. The theme is great; recruiting people, meeting Indians, buying equipment, building your expedition, going hunting, the super nice art... the whole game drips with theme. I love the theme and I love the game. Who cares if it wasn't a race historically. Every game has thematic issues in the mechanisms or compared to reality.

This.
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Hardy
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kelendil wrote:
Thematic does not mean historically accurate. The theme is great; recruiting people, meeting Indians, buying equipment, building your expedition, going hunting, the super nice art... the whole game drips with theme. I love the theme and I love the game. Who cares if it wasn't a race historically. Every game has thematic issues in the mechanisms or compared to reality.


I can agree with that. I do like teh game myself and it certainly feel more thematic and less abstract than some other euro. It's just that teh historical theme pasted on doesn't fit. If they had created a fictional mission (like e.g. in the two games already existing both called pony express) as the theme of the game I would have said: ver ynice them implementation, but of course a historical theme is maybe better to attract attention.
 
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brian
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Late to the party but just picked up 2nd edition of the game.

I don't feel the theme is pasted on as others have mentioned. I also don't think the "history" is too far off, especially since they mention this is a "what if" scenario (perhaps as a reaction to this criticism?).

But even in that, I don't see it as too far off. All the cards represent actual historical characters (from my understanding). Some come and go as they join and later leave the main party. They are all trying to get to the same place. They are in essence helping each other do that when they are using other player's icons to increase their own resource production. The race is usually pretty tight so it seems more like friendly competition in between the larger group instead of 2 or more separate expeditions.

In my mind it is reconciled and like another said above, it is making me want to learn more about the true history, so looking to get out my dad's copy of Undaunted Courage or seeing if any of Allan Eckert's books cover this period.
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Brandon H
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
In my mind it is reconciled and like another said above, it is making me want to learn more about the true history, so looking to get out my dad's copy of Undaunted Courage or seeing if any of Allan Eckert's books cover this period.

I picked up Undaunted Courage several years ago after I realized I knew far too much about the Fellowship of the Ring and far too little about actual epic journeys.
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