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Subject: Jumping back into the Deep End..... rss

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Erik
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I feel like I know how to swim (See below - decent SL Background) so I have chosen to jump into the full deep end and go for full ASL.

I am not sure why - but I felt compelled to order the new version of Yanks. It is now on the way.

I currently have the ASL 2nd Edition (and somewhere buried deep in storage the first edition) Rule book. I have a copy of BV (original mounted map boards and unpunched) I found buried deep on a shelf in a game store in Germany.

I have all the ASKSK and have played most of them, albeit about 5 years ago. I cut my teeth back as a kid on SL. So I am ready to jump to ASL. I just want to try.

I know I could find some around locally to teach and maybe a few FtF players, but there is a part of me that would like the solace of learning this and solo play.

I maybe crazy and a week put this back on the shelf....but need to try the deep end and I am confident at the very least I can swim back to the shallow end of the pool.....
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Bruce Probst
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Well, obviously it's entirely up to you, but playing solo is probably the worst possible way of learning ASL, and IMO not especially entertaining.

There are lots of ASL players in Germany, and many more in Europe in general, so between FTF possibilities and VASL you should have no problem finding people to game with in your own time zone -- and of course VASL means being able to play anyone located anywhere in the world!

I hope you persevere and discover the pure pleasure that is ASL, but please ... trying it solo should be your absolutely, positively last option. Even if your opponent is as unfamiliar with the game as yourself, the interaction between you will make learning the game a lot easier.
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Andreas Lundin
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BruceP wrote:
...playing solo is probably the worst possible way of learning ASL, and IMO not especially entertaining...


Yes, that is so true. I came back to ASL recently after a 15 or 20 years hiatus (or thereabouts) and tried to play a scenario solo (like I do with my GMT-games and stuff). No good. No good at all. Found an old friend whom I played with as a college student. Bang! He found it a very good idea and we now have regular playnights. Way to go.
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Erik
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Thanks for the input - I do not doubt that I could find a player either via VASL (have played ASLSK Live and PBEM) or locally (have been contacted in past by a local ASL player). More of it is just the freedom of scheduling and sitting down on a whim to try...with family, work and so forth it is difficult to commit to an exact time. These are challenges that we all face, so I am no different.

I certainly agree there are easier ways to go about this and perhaps maybe I end up banging my head against a wall....for now I will try the flexibility of scheduling over ease of having a live opponent.

(I may regret this...but going to try)
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Pablo Garcia Silva
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TheBigE wrote:
Thanks for the input - I do not doubt that I could find a player either via VASL (have played ASLSK Live and PBEM) or locally (have been contacted in past by a local ASL player). More of it is just the freedom of scheduling and sitting down on a whim to try...with family, work and so forth it is difficult to commit to an exact time. These are challenges that we all face, so I am no different.

I certainly agree there are easier ways to go about this and perhaps maybe I end up banging my head against a wall....for now I will try the flexibility of scheduling over ease of having a live opponent.

(I may regret this...but going to try)


There is of course the option of doing ASL PBEM. I have been doing Festung Budapest CGIII since 2012 that way!
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Scott
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Playing against others live is probably the best, but I have also had a lot of fun playing ASL solitaire. It gives me time to think and bury my nose in the book for as long as I want to. You won't get any of the surprises you would from f2f play, but solo ASL is still a great game.

Plus, with your SL and ASLSK background it won't be very hard to learn full ASL. Jump in and have fun.
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Bruce Probst
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Checkallday wrote:
You won't get any of the surprises you would from f2f play, but solo ASL is still a great game.


It's not just about the "surprises" (although obviously there's a lot of that to account for; a large number of ASL scenarios involve one side having secret information -- hidden units, bore-sighted locations, etc.). The more serious issue is that ASL is a game where it's very easy to learn the rules incorrectly, which can then cause problems when you play other people. You also mightwill miss out on nuances of play -- the rulebook will teach you the rules but it won't teach you how to play effectively. That only comes with experience, particularly the experience of watching other players do these things to you. The path to ASL "greatness" -- or even "averageness" -- starts with a lot of losses, but even more learning. You just won't get that with solo play, unless you're some sort of savant.
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Scott
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BruceP wrote:
The more serious issue is that ASL is a game where it's very easy to learn the rules incorrectly, which can then cause problems when you play other people. You also mightwill miss out on nuances of play -- the rulebook will teach you the rules but it won't teach you how to play effectively. That only comes with experience, particularly the experience of watching other players do these things to you. The path to ASL "greatness" -- or even "averageness" -- starts with a lot of losses, but even more learning. You just won't get that with solo play, unless you're some sort of savant.


Fair enough. He probably will miss some nuances, and obviously a person can't become "great" at anything competitive without actually competing. But he wasn't really talking about either nuances or "greatness" was he? The OP says he wants to learn the game and would enjoy the solace of solo play. These goals are not mutually exclusive. I've yet to meet an ASL player who isn't learning new nuances or correcting some misinterpretation of the rules. If having the rules absolutely correct and understanding all the nuances were prerequisites for ASL enjoyment, there would be like two or three guys on earth having fun playing ASL. There is no doubt in my mind that a gamer with the OP's background will be up and playing in no time.

I learned the bones of the game by myself (a few nuances, no greatness, but lots of fun), played a bunch with another noob (learned some more nuances, no greatness, but lots of fun), and then got my ass handed to me by veterans (learned more nuances, still no greatness, and lots of fun). I would even argue that learning some of the old tricks by myself without having to be told about them was even more fun than just having somebody tell me about them. I was even able to point out a couple of rules the vets were playing wrong (or had forgotten about) because I had recently spent so much time with the rulebook learning the game. Sure, I had a few rules wrong, but that was easy enough to fix. Playing the rules not quite right certainly didn't negate the great times I had learning the game.

There are plenty of us out there who love ASL for the fun, the narrative, and the brain workout. We couldn't give two-shits about competition and rule-perfection. The "right" way to play is the way you enjoy playing.
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John Brock
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TheBigE wrote:

I certainly agree there are easier ways to go about this and perhaps maybe I end up banging my head against a wall....for now I will try the flexibility of scheduling over ease of having a live opponent.

I know of at least one regular contributor to Gamesquad who had the same choice to make, opted for the flexibility just as you are doing, and has been very happy with his choice.

PBEM is good for people who need flexibility, but I don't think I'd recommend trying to use it to learn. Face-to-face allows for instant correction of mistakes, whereas with PBEM each mistake could require a lot of rewinding. (However, I see you've already played the ASLSKs, so you may well be past the point of frequent mistakes.)
 
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Erik
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jwb3 wrote:
PBEM is good for people who need flexibility, but I don't think I'd recommend trying to use it to learn. Face-to-face allows for instant correction of mistakes, whereas with PBEM each mistake could require a lot of rewinding. (However, I see you've already played the ASLSKs, so you may well be past the point of frequent mistakes.)


Having done PBEM before with ASLSK#1 and CC, I would agree that it is not best for learning. It can be a challenge and require the complete reversal of a turn in some cases.

Just an update - working through the first chapter so far in ASL rule book. Fortunately my background in ASLSK 1, 2, and 3 makes it a bit easier and I can pickup on the areas that are new in ASL.

For the moment I enjoy the intense focus one must have for reading these rules. Crazy, I know...
 
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Warren Smith
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TheBigE wrote:
For the moment I enjoy the intense focus one must have for reading these rules. Crazy, I know...

Ah! I remember those days.
 
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