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Subject: Movies and Games: Thematic Gamers - Pure Fun Games Blog rss

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Josh Buel
United States
Pearl River
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Last week I asked how we could emulate a movie watching atmosphere for board games. I think
I think there are multiple ways to approach this, but it depends on what kind of people are in your group. In my opinion, a gamer is usually some sort of mix in the these 3 categories

Thematic gamers
Mechanical gamers

This week I will go over the 1st category. Some players who are geared towards this category might respond best to the theme of the game. If your players don't enjoy the theme, they won't invest themselves in the game, similar to trying to watch The Notebook on guys’ night out. For these gamers, you will want to pick a theme they can immerse himself. Will he have more fun being a simple cave farmer, or a cyborg werewolf on the hunt runaway terrorist. For me the choice is obvious, but be careful, just because you like one theme doesn't mean everyone will like it.

To get the best experience with theme loving gamers, follow these guidelines.

Pick a game with a theme that will appeal to them. In a pinch or large crowd,Codenames is a great pick. Most people will enjoy the spy theme and the game is easy to get into with minimal setup.
Sell the theme! Tell them about the game like it was your favorite movie. Give them a role to play. In the example of codenames...

Say: “All of our spies have gone off the grid. We need YOU to find them with the little Intel we can give you: a single word, which will help you to decipher their code name!”

Don't say: “oh it's a word game kinda like taboo”

A word of warning though. Don't oversell the game. Give them a taste of the theme and see if they bite. If they are curios, continue to talk about or show them the game. Avoid saying “man we have to play this game is amazing!! You'll love it I promise!” This may force them to compromise their idea of a fun theme in order to play a game you claim is great. This may turn out ok, but it's possible for them to lose interest mid way through because the theme is lacking for them. You also run the risk of over-hyping the game, resulting in the player feeling disappointed at the end.

Hope that helps! Share your thoughts below! Come back next week for when I talk about another kind of player: the mechanical player.
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