Do you use IMDb? It's a lot like boardgamegeek, but for movies. Users rate films. The only difference? Films have genres, like horror, action, drama. You've seen these categories while picking out stuff at Blockbuster or the mall.
This would be really handy. Say I am looking for a game with an auction. If I could see the highly rated games that featured auctions just by clicking a category on the front page called "Top 10 Auction games", I'd get my results pretty fast. What if I like theme more than mechanic... what's the best WWII squad game? If we had a WWII theme genre, perhaps we could jump to a list of that...
Why can't games have genres? What would be good ways to give games genres? What genres would there be?
We could break up games by mechanic and by theme. Each game could receive a series of tags and there could be automatic queries to load the list based on those tags. That's a start that uses the technology that's already integrated with the site. The only thing left is how to decide which tags on what games...
Eric, have you tried clicking:
Categories or Mechanics in the navigation bar at the top of every BGG page? If so, could you please be more specific about how what you are proposing would differ from this? I think you may have a good idea, but I am just not able to visualize it clearly as yet.
Eric, have you tried clicking:Categories
in the navigation bar at the top of every BGG page?
If so, could you please be more specific about how what you are proposing would differ from this? I think you may have a good idea, but I am just not able to visualize it clearly as yet.
If you click on categories, the first subcategory listed is Abstract Strategy. A few down, there is a subcategory called American Civil War. These two things do not belong on the same list. One is mechanical, the other is thematic. Even among thematic elements, some are historical and could be grouped into a new general category (with subcategory as desired) while others are so general that it's hard to figure them out... Humor? Is that for games about funny subjects, games that are funny, or both? And let's not get started on "Wargame"...
Under mechanics, you know what Area-Impulse is. I know what Area-Impulse is (I think), but does any new user know what that is? Why would someone click on that link unless they understood what it was? Where is the definition? If a new game is invented, how do we know what to put it under? What about games that have one aspect, but the actual importance of that aspect is a minimal part of the game? I mean, there is a way to trade cards in Age of Rennaisance, but you'd hardly call it a trading game. Are all these mechanics equal or of the same type? To me, point to point movement covers Monopoly, Empire Builder, and Space Hulk... yet these don't appear when I click on it and the items aren't even in database ranking order.
These lists and rankings are an important part of the site. BGG is primarily used, I'll wager, by people looking for a specific game (served well by searching) or by people looking for a type of game. There is advanced searching, but it is basically just the same thing as this with a few extra options... and even then, if I am searching for a game that's really good for 3 people, I either have to limit to games that accept exactly 3 or games that accept other numbers and might be intended for those instead.
When you look at IMDb, the categories are well defined, more or less comprehensive, and a defining way of arranging the data on the site, front page, first choice.
How's that for a start?
Let's take a look at a simple conversion. Let's take all the items that appear on the Categories page and try to build general classes of categories with definitions.
Here's one variation, just as an example;
Mechanics - What do you do while playing this game?
Theme - What is the inspiration for this game? What is the game about?
Video Game Theme
Historical Conflict - Is this game based on a historical conflict?
American Civil War
American Indian Wars
American Revolutionary War
World War I
World War II
Historical Period - Is this game based on a historical period?
Style - What kind of game is it?
Components - What type of pieces does this game use?
Other - Is there something else you know about this game?
Expansion for Base-game
There, seven categories with descriptions that give someone a chance to organize their thoughts on the Categories page. Even making a small change like this would be helpful for someone confronted with so many choices. Including well known examples would make it even better.
A) Some great variations on this might group the historical categories in with the general Theme category. Perhaps the Mechanics category and following items should be moved to the Mechanics page?
B) When you look at these options as categories, you see missing subjects that I am sure people would be interested in. If you look at Historical Periods, for example, there is no option for Roman, yet there are lots of games set in ancient Rome and it's a popular subject.
C) Now, how about the option of selecting one item in each group? Not that there are a lot of Action/Dexterity games about World War II (hmm... must write that down), but there are lots of Deduction games about Murder/Mystery.
I hope this helps clarify the problem I'm talking about...
Ah, yes, much more clear now. Thanks, Eric. And a good idea, IMO.
I do like the idea, as well!