Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 Hide
21 Posts

Ghost Stories» Forums » General

Subject: is this game for nongamers? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
vagelis
Greece
Πειραιάς
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
As the title said is this a game for nongamers? In terms of the rules.......does it have difficult(a lot of) rules?
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrew B
Sweden
Stockholm
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't think this is at all for non-gamers.

The rules are simple enough, but the problem is that you need to make a lot of difficult choices. Non-gamers prefer lighter choices in their games usually.

Also, the fact that the game is brutally difficult will certainly not appeal to most non-gamers.
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bruno Pigeon
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hello! I am an experienced gamer, but I prefer casual games. I have difficulty with complex games, like Descent, Arkham Horror, Dungeon Petz. All games that have lots of rules.

But I love Ghost Stories. The rules are not difficult, but poorly explained in the rulebook.
On a player turn, you apply the power of the ghosts on your board. The ghost can move toward the board an haunt a tile, make you roll a curse dice, etc.

Then you draw a ghost card and place it on the board of the corresponding color.

Then you can move your monk.

Then you can fight a ghost adjacent to you or use the power of the tile on which you stand.

The rules don't get much more complex than that.

The difficulty comes from learning the different powers of the monks and the tiles, and learning to use them correctly. It's a game that will offer you difficult decision. You'll want to eliminate ghosts of every turn to avoid being overwhelmed, but to do so you will need to use the tiles. Since you can't do both, you'll have to choose and that's where the tension is. But it's a cooperative game so you makes those decisions as a team. Which is less intimidating that a competitive game where you have to come up with your own strategy.

The game is also quite difficult to win. Over 25 plays, at beginner level, i've won only once.

I suggest you try the game on Ipad or vassal before you buy. Also watch some videos. i think rahdo made a runthrough.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Matija Opašić
Croatia
Zagreb
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
No, this game is not for nongamers. Some nongamers may enjoy it, but generally it's a bad choice for a gateway game.

Try some other cooperative puzzle game like Pandemic before jumping to Ghost Stories.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Yes, the name by itself has potential to lead people to think it's some light party game "hey let's tell Ghost Stories!" (But that's not what it's about at all) Can I ask if that's why you thought it would be good?

I teach many different games to many different people (hundreds), gamers and non gamers, and can tell you unequivocally that this is NOT a game for non gamers.

there are lots of rules
the game is quite long
the game is quite hard / lots of different options
there is player asymmetry

I've had medium-weight gamers get traumatised by the game, I would not introduce it to non-gamers.

If you force non-gamers to play a strategic co-op game like this, they will increasingly defer to the one gamer at the table, who will start telling them what to do, and the non-gamers will probably stare into the distance, or their phones.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jon W
United States
Aurora
CO
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Rainbow Snake wrote:
If you force non-gamers to play a strategic co-op game like this, they will increasingly defer to the one gamer at the table, who will start telling them what to do, and the non-gamers will probably stare into the distance, or their phones.

Yes, this is exactly true. It's ill-suited for mixed skill levels, regardless of the level of "gamer-ness".
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Keith M. Sandler
United States
Framingham
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I've introduced this to several non/fledgling gamers with great results. To me it's a fairly elegant co-op with nice theme and great tension. As always, it depends on your group. It could certainly suffer from an alpha-gamer running the show, but that, to me, is an issue of personalities, not of the game itself.

I'd highly recommend you giving this one a try. It has been a group favorite for quite some time.

Just my 2 Qi,

-kMs
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rich Charters
United States
Chandler
Arizona
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Here's my 2 cents:

For a game like Ghost Stories, it's important to have one person who understands the rules well enough to be able to make any necessary judgement calls when they come up. All of the rest of the players could be non-gamer noobs and it will still be a great experience. As has been stated, the base rules are very simple...move and then use a tile or fight....anyone can understand and enjoy the base mechanics.

If at least one player doesn't have sufficient knowledge of the rules and/or doesn't have the confidence to make an on-the-spot decision about a ambiguous rule (or rule they don't yet understand clearly), then you can get yourself in trouble by creating confusion and uncertainty.

IMO, it's much better to just make a decision that keeps the game moving then to have a 10min rules dive in the middle of the game. Then, you can re-read the rules after the game to solidify your understanding of the rules (without dragging down the game).
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
michael ray
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
Rainbow Snake wrote:

there are lots of rules
the game is quite long
the game is quite hard / lots of different options
there is player asymmetry


I would argue those first two points. There really aren't a lot of rules, just a terrible rule book, and the game should be right around an hour. Not a terrible length for a game.

I'd say if you have 2-3 regular gamers and 1-2 non-gamers it would be playable, but 3+ non-gamers would be pushing it.

For non-gamers, if you want co-op look at a game like pandemic, for non-co-op, look at king of toyko for really easy, or a game like small world for slightly more complex.

3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
SoCal
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Strictly speaking from a rules perspective, it's a gray area. If they can pick up games like Kingsburg or Settlers Of Catan, this should work. Whether they win or not is another thing entirely. OTOH, if they're "non-gamer enough" where you have people's eyes glazing over when explaining games like Sushi Go, or saying "man, this game is too complicated" during Ticket To Ride, then pass. It sounds like they just want to have a beer and play Cards Against Humanity.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert
Canada
Edmonton
Alberta
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmb
I would never spring this on non-gamers.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
squegeeboo wrote:

I would argue those first two points. There really aren't a lot of rules, just a terrible rule book,

To be fair, the updated rules on the Repos site are much better than the original rules, and answer many more questions than the original.

squegeeboo wrote:
and the game should be right around an hour. Not a terrible length for a game.

I'd say if you have 2-3 regular gamers and 1-2 non-gamers it would be playable, but 3+ non-gamers would be pushing it.

For non-gamers, if you want co-op look at a game like pandemic, for non-co-op, look at king of toyko for really easy, or a game like small world for slightly more complex.

I'm not sure whether you guys have the same definition of non-gamers as I do. I know heaps of *gamers* who consider Pandemic too hard/too many rules/too long and Small World much the same.

The last time I played Ghost Stories I was introducing it to some *medium* weight gamers, and they were shocked by the complexity and how long the game went for. Two hours is a regular length.

Non gamers are people who do not play games. They might not have played games in years. We're talking about people like your grandma or your drinking buddies. Throw Ghost Stories at them and they'll likely leave mid way, and if you suggest playing games again, they are likely to refuse. Games like Dixit, Bohnanza or King of Tokyo are great games and more appropriate for non-gamers.

I've had great luck with introducing non-gamers to new games in stages, instead of "throwing them in the deep end".
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
OP (Vagelis) ... was there a reason why you thought this game might be good for "non gamers"?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
bort
Australia
Brisbane
Qld
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I wouldnt bring out Ghost Stories for non-gamers (or people I was trying to get into gaming).

I can see where an experienced player could guide several non-gamers thru it tho. Not going totally alpha, but just pointing out possible moves and letting them decide which one to actually do.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Kearns
United States
Bloomington
Indiana
flag msg tools
Silence is golden.
badge
Your sea is so great and my boat is so small.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
No. No, it isn't.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bruno Pigeon
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Franklin1742 wrote:
Tuco: There are only two kinds of people in this world my friend: gamers and nongamers.
Eric Idle: Well, there are nongamers who have played chess.
Tuco: All right. There are only three kinds of people in this world: gamers, nongamers and nongamers who have played chess.
Eric: Well, a lot of nongamers like mathematical puzzles and brain teasers.
Tuco: OK. There are four kinds of people in this world...etc.


Yep, I agree with that.

Non-gamers doesn't mean somebody who doesn't like games. It just mean somebody who doesn't play boardgames.

It is difficult to say what kind of game they would enjoy. Maybe you could try Twilight imperium with them and they'll fall in love with it. Or you could play King of Tokyo and they won't like it.

Non-gamer is not helpful to determine if they will like a game or not.

You should talk with them, explain to them what kind of experience the game you want to play with them will offer. They are not idiotic people. They just don't play game for some reason.

Ghost stories is not a complex game, it's easy to learn how to play. But it offer you difficult choices. Would non-gamers like that? It depends.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
vagelis
Greece
Πειραιάς
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Rainbow Snake 1st reason is that i think co-op games are more friendly to non-gamers(not all its not standart) 2nt ghost stories has very good theme this is the 2 basic reasons.....others is the great componets good looking game!
My mistake the group that i want for ghost its not totally non-gamers.they have played family games like ticket-catan-disckworld......but they don't play every week!!
From the videos i saw that the difficulty of the game is to the symbols(I am not talking about strategy and decisions).I think that if one player knows very well the rules the game can roll well

Bruno i agree with you.first game of 7 wonder they hate.....now they please me to play!!!
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Ahhh right ... well vagelis ... personally I wouldn't call your friends "non gamers" at all. "Every week" would be hardcore.

In my country most people have never heard of "Ticket to Ride" or "Settlers of Catan", and those that do, rarely play them in families, instead play with special groups of friends, like those who play MagicTheGathering or Dungeons & Dragons.

I must object about the Ghost Story symbols - the symbols are great and make the game *more* playable, instead of less!

The difficulty in the game is that there are so many different options to choose, the horror of random ghosts and random dice rolls, and worse, when you slip a bit in your defence of the village, the ghosts start to pile up and overwhelm you!!!
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Shoosh shoo
Canada
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I have played this game a lot! I have introduced it to several people of varying degrees of gaming experience. Not once did i have a situation where an inexperienced gamer felt like they were in over their heads. Here is the way ive introduced the game.

First of all, i know the rules very well. If im playing with the group i avoid being the alpha gamer by simply presenting options. I am very clear to say "you do what you think is best because even a good plan can be foiled by bad dice rolling." Sometimes i will introduce the game to a group of noobs but i will mediate and explain rules. This helps eliminate the alpha gamer role as i can point out dangers and explain options. Again, i tell the player they should decide.

I will explain how a turn occurs and tell the players how the game flows. I dont explain the tiles in detail until we get going because most people wont remember all nine tile abilities. Stick to explaining how a turn plays out, and explain tile abilities as you go. The players need to understand the flow of the game and what their powers do.

Im not sure why people say this game is extremely hard. I play it on the easiest difficulty and i have won a little under half of the games ive played. I think people believe its difficult for two major reasons. Firstly they dont clearly understand the rules. Secondly they make poor judgement calls and dont manage the threats effectively.

In my games i prioritize haunters. The only thing more important than a haunter is the ghost who locks up a die. Im not afraid to sacrifice qi if it will get me some needed kills. Know how to use your yin yang power (possible to use it twice on a turn). I dont usually have two buddahs out because i seem never able to collect them! This is my weakest area of my game. Like i said though its not too hard for me to pull off a win whether im playing solo or with noobs, and i can honestly say i have generally crappy luck with the tao dice
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
vagelis
Greece
Πειραιάς
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I bought the game with expansion white moon
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
shooshoo wrote:
I have played this game a lot! I have introduced it to several people of varying degrees of gaming experience. Not once did i have a situation where an inexperienced gamer felt like they were in over their heads.

"inexperienced" gamers ≠ "non-gamers".

"Inexperienced" can mean different things to different people. I seem to recall someone here described some people as casual gamers because they only played games once a week!

Non-gamers are people who have had a history devoid of games. They are unlikely to be particularly interested or motivated to try games or they would have done so in the past.

shooshoo wrote:
I dont explain the tiles in detail until we get going because most people wont remember all nine tile abilities.

Okay, sounds like I teach in almost the same way as you, except could you give me a primer on how you "explain the tiles, but not in detail"?

shooshoo wrote:
I'm not sure why people say this game is extremely hard. I play it on the easiest difficulty and i have won a little under half of the games ive played.


I don't think the intro level is "extremely" hard, but unless you "manage the threats effectively" you will get swamped. I probably win with beginners about the same amount as you do.

How do you compare the difficulty/complexity of other games?

eg Bohnanza, Pandemic, Forbidden Island, Power Grid, Dominant Species, Dungeon Petz, Settlers of Catan, Agricola, Lords of Waterdeep, Five Tribes
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.