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Subject: Colour choice and winning the game rss

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Chris Hanratty
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Some studies have suggested that in the sporting world, red is the colour of winners.

How do you think this affects board games? The reason I looked into this is because a while back, after pretty much always playing as green when given the choice, for some reason I switched to yellow. And now I think I don't win as much.

Obviously this could be down to any number of reasons, but there's a part of me that thinks that yellow just stands out more on most board games, and I'm therefore much more visible as a potential threat to the other players. Someone playing as green on a green background won't be as noticeable as a glaring yellow.

Has anyone else switched colours and noticed anything like this? Or have you noticed any patterns relating to certain colours winning more?

Discuss!
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Clare Cannon
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I play red. I dont often win

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CARL SKUTSCH
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I play whatever unattractive garish color is left after everyone else picks their favorite colors. It's kinda a metaphor for my life.

Except, unlike life, I win plenty. (Sad trombone sound.)
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Robb Melenyk
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exparrot wrote:
I play red. I dont often win



I was just going to say, i'm always red and my win rate is uh...not good. Oddly, I play red because before board games, my room-ate and I played Cribbage. He was always blue and I was always red.

So thanks cribbage!

 
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I am Abomination
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I play white or pink.

White because I'm a former M:tG player and White/Black (and occasional red) are the colours that define me.

Pink because I like pink.

In Mystic Vale I take the red sleeves. Because I don't know. I still win with yellow sleeves.

I win a lot of games, whatever colour I choose. I lose some to, and then my face turns red. So it's more a loser colour as far as I'm concerned
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Steve B
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Every time I play green I feel like a winner. Every time I play orange I feel like a loser.
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Tim Bolton
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Every time we play, everyone usually gets to pick their favorite color. I haven't noticed any corralation between color choice and victory. That being said, I often win and I always select green.googoo
greentraingreentraingreentraingreentraingreentraingreentrain
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Liam (AFK/Away)
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I don't find the study particularly persuasive.
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Andrew J.
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The few, the eight, the faithful:

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We play with teal.

Edit: I always fall on the cool side of the spectrum. Teal if available, otherwise a nice green, otherwise a nice blue.
 
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Russ Williams
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I'm skeptical.

Simple remark: consider any game with a measurable first player advantage, e.g. Chess. I find it hard to believe that merely swapping the colors would affect that first player advantage.

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there's a part of me that thinks that yellow just stands out more on most board games, and I'm therefore much more visible as a potential threat to the other players. Someone playing as green on a green background won't be as noticeable as a glaring yellow.

This argument doesn't seem very convincing to me if the players are competent instead of casual/newbies. Also, which color "stands out more" will vary from game to game.

Also it doesn't work for 2-player games.
 
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I'm blue abu di abu die
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Betty Boop
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I play red. I seem to lose frequently.
I've tried other colors with same result. (sigh)
I'll stay with red, at least I know which one I am.
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Ben Goulding
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I tend to choose yellow in games these days, it's become ingrained enough that when I can't play yellow I still use yellow's pieces to formulate my strategy. Several times I reached onto the board, realised (or been told) I'm moving the wrong piece and have to start again!
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April W
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radioshed wrote:
Some studies have suggested that in the sporting world, red is the colour of winners.

How do you think this affects board games? The reason I looked into this is because a while back, after pretty much always playing as green when given the choice, for some reason I switched to yellow. And now I think I don't win as much.

Obviously this could be down to any number of reasons, but there's a part of me that thinks that yellow just stands out more on most board games, and I'm therefore much more visible as a potential threat to the other players. Someone playing as green on a green background won't be as noticeable as a glaring yellow.

Has anyone else switched colours and noticed anything like this? Or have you noticed any patterns relating to certain colours winning more?

Discuss!


Similarly, I usually chose green for any game, with blue being my backup, but when I started playing a lot of Roll for the Galaxy the bright yellow really stood out to me. About the time I made the switch to yellow I also honed my skills so I started winning a lot. I joked that it was because the yellow/alien worlds were the most valuable so that color was lucky. In RftG you don't have the problem of standing out to other players because it's not a direct conflict game.
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Chris Mcpherson
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Yellow

But to answer your question, you must earn the right to WIN with Yellow, hehe!
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Chris Hanratty
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russ wrote:
This argument doesn't seem very convincing to me if the players are competent instead of casual/newbies. Also, which color "stands out more" will vary from game to game.

Also it doesn't work for 2-player games.


Yes, I agree with you. I was, however, using green on a green background as an example; it could equally be blue on blue, black on black, etc. How many of us have taken a move then realised that they completely missed someone else's piece because the colour of it blended in with the background? I know I have.

The point I was trying to make is that the brighter the colour, or the more clashing the colour is with the background, the more "noticeable" you are.

I'd even be willing to suggest that this could be having an effect on a subconscious level. Not that I'm an expert or anything.
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Ole Richard Tuft
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I usually let the other players pick first. If given a choice, I will alternate between quietly going for camouflage or picking a stand-out color while declaring resistance to be futile.
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Mav
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I find if someone else is green, I will want to move them at least once in a game.
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John
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russ wrote:
Quote:
there's a part of me that thinks that yellow just stands out more on most board games, and I'm therefore much more visible as a potential threat to the other players. Someone playing as green on a green background won't be as noticeable as a glaring yellow.

This argument doesn't seem very convincing to me if the players are competent instead of casual/newbies. Also, which color "stands out more" will vary from game to game.


I don't know, it could be a factor even with fairly competent players. People are illogical, even people who know that are still illogical. I could believe that competent players of a game would be more likely to consider certain players a threat based on the colour of their pieces. It's probably more likely that there is no effect, and if there was an effect I'm sure it would be fairly small.

I'd assume that conclusion based on "I switched from this colour to that colour and something changed" is more likely to be down to small sample size & bias towards remembering evidence that backs up the theory.
 
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John
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russ wrote:
Also it doesn't work for 2-player games.


I don't see why not. Well obviously the mechanism suggested by the OP wouldn't work but some other mechanism might. After all the sports study was of 2p combat sports. Whether there is a real effect and if so what the mechanism is I don't know but I don't think it could be discounted that there would be an effect. If Chess had red & blue pieces and it was random which colour started then maybe red would win slightly more. Who knows? I doubt anyone is going to do a study any time soon.
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Russ Williams
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zabdiel wrote:
russ wrote:
Also it doesn't work for 2-player games.


I don't see why not.

The argument which I said doesn't work for 2-player games was clearly supposing multiplayer, it seemed to me: "I'm therefore much more visible as a potential threat to the other players" i.e. other players focus on me instead of focusing on other opponents.

In a 2-player game, a player of course focuses on their unique opponent; there is no choice of who they should focus on.

Quote:
Well obviously the mechanism suggested by the OP wouldn't work but some other mechanism might. After all the sports study was of 2p combat sports. Whether there is a real effect and if so what the mechanism is I don't know but I don't think it could be discounted that there would be an effect. If Chess had red & blue pieces and it was random which colour started then maybe red would win slightly more. Who knows? I doubt anyone is going to do a study any time soon.

Theoretically possible, I agree, but I'm still skeptical.
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Russ Williams
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radioshed wrote:
russ wrote:
This argument doesn't seem very convincing to me if the players are competent instead of casual/newbies. Also, which color "stands out more" will vary from game to game.


Yes, I agree with you. I was, however, using green on a green background as an example; it could equally be blue on blue, black on black, etc. How many of us have taken a move then realised that they completely missed someone else's piece because the colour of it blended in with the background? I know I have.

The point I was trying to make is that the brighter the colour, or the more clashing the colour is with the background, the more "noticeable" you are.

Oh, OK; I thought you were considering the question of whether some specific color is more "winning" (like red is supposedly in sports, according to the link you gave).
 
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Chris Hanratty
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zabdiel wrote:
I'd assume that conclusion based on "I switched from this colour to that colour and something changed" is more likely to be down to small sample size & bias towards remembering evidence that backs up the theory.


See:

Quote:
Obviously this could be down to any number of reasons


I'm not suggesting that my decreased win rate is solely down to a colour switch. No conclusions drawn here, it was just an idea that I found interesting. I make some excellent mistakes during games, and it could just be that.
 
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Chris Hanratty
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russ wrote:
Oh, OK; I thought you were considering the question of whether some specific color is more "winning" (like red is supposedly in sports, according to the link you gave).


Apologies, I think what I'm actually trying to suggest is that some colours are more likely to lose than others when it comes to board games, but that can really be dependent on the game itself.

However I do find the whole "red is a winning colour" idea quite interesting, in terms of the psychological effects certain colours may have. I think maybe in board games it's a bit different as your pieces are separate from you, while in sports you're actually wearing the colour on your body and that might give certain signals to other people.
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Konrad Teper
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Well "Redness indicates anger, testosterone and male aggression..." - everything you need in combat or contact sports, but not really in stay-cool-and-do-your-strategy board games.

Maybe in board games you need other colours, so blue.... http://www.colour-affects.co.uk/psychological-properties-of-...

Most time I play yellow and as I switched last time to other colour, I was confused and get score I moved the not-my-yellow-stone...
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