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Subject: Giving Games As Gifts (To Non-Gamer Friends) rss

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Christopher Wionzek
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I have a friend who loves Gears of War (the video game), and between the two of us we've coop-finished all the games in the series multiple times.

He's expressed interest in playing some games before, and even bought me a copy of Metal Gear Solid Risk (again, another game-game) for a birthday once.

So I thought, I'll get him a copy of the Gears of War board game as a gift.

Now, since he's a non-gamer, I thought "Well I'll open the package and learn the rules for him, repackage all the components into storage nicely, sleeve the cards, etc. and then be able to present it to him and teach him to play all at once."

A friend of mine suggested this might be a faux-pas, opening his "gift" for him beforehand rather than giving that "experience" to him. I thought it'd be nicer of me to do the "lifting" of learning the game for him (again, he's not a board gamer) so that he could go on with immediately enjoying his present.

What's the opinion/experience of others, around here?
 
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Joseph Schmoll
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Dragoonkin wrote:
I have a friend who loves Gears of War (the video game), and between the two of us we've coop-finished all the games in the series multiple times.

He's expressed interest in playing some games before, and even bought me a copy of Metal Gear Solid Risk (again, another game-game) for a birthday once.

So I thought, I'll get him a copy of the Gears of War board game as a gift.

Now, since he's a non-gamer, I thought "Well I'll open the package and learn the rules for him, repackage all the components into storage nicely, sleeve the cards, etc. and then be able to present it to him and teach him to play all at once."

A friend of mine suggested this might be a faux-pas, opening his "gift" for him beforehand rather than giving that "experience" to him. I thought it'd be nicer of me to do the "lifting" of learning the game for him (again, he's not a board gamer) so that he could go on with immediately enjoying his present.

What's the opinion/experience of others, around here?


Would it be possible to learn it ahead of time from a PDF or something, but let him initially open the box?

I'm reminded of a time when a friend of mine got another friend a video game (used, which is no issue)...but actually played and finished it first, then gave it to him. Something about that felt kind of off...and though I don't know if the guy ever found out, it just still seemed off.

I think part of the fun is unboxing that new thing and discovering all the bits and pieces and "OOH WHAT'S THIS THING!" and those moments.

But maybe that's just me.
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Michael Iachini
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If this were for a board gamer, I could see them appreciating you "going the extra mile" to get the game ready for them to play. But for a non-board gamer, I think your friend is right; they're likely to feel like you've already opened their toy and played with it and then gave them a hand-me-down.

However, I think that if you read the rules online and watch how-to-play videos and that sort of thing so that you can help him get into the game as quickly as possible, that would be excellent!
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TTDG
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You can probably learn the rules here or a publisher website, and even bookmark a learning video to pass to your friend later. Similarly, you can purchase the card sleeves and hand those over as a gift with a coupon for the 'task of sleeving'. And you may even be able to find the dimensions you need for things like a foamcore insert, or buy the right plano box, etc, and again offer to help sort it all out after your friend has opened it. So yes, avoid opening it.

On the third hand, Gears of War: The Board Game has never come up on my radar as a gateway game. So, consider whether the theme is paramount, or weather a more introductory game might get your friend into boardgaming better.
 
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Peter N
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IMO opening a gift you're buying for someone else is generally a no no. It just seems/feels weird. Learn the rules from somewhere online or buy a copy for yourself. Otherwise, you could buy him a boardgame you already know how to play that you think he'd enjoy as well.

Otherwise it will feel like you're essentially giving him a used copy of a board game.
 
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Pete
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sturner wrote:
Nothing is more thoughtful than getting someone something you want instead of something they want.
Well, it's even more thoughtful when you get someone something you think they need based on some flaw you think they have and that they don't seem to want to fix.

Pete (stares at the treadmill his mother got him a few years back)
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