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Subject: Stocks - why are they in the game? rss

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Evan Duly
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If my reading of the rules and forums is correct, the "stocks" in this game are an unspendable amount of money player's collect during the game that just gets added to a player's score at the end of the game.

Based on this I'm not seeing the purpose of the stocks for being in the game besides perhaps something to incentivize making bigger words? If that is the purpose, then it seems like that benefit is outweighed by having one extra thing to explain to players and one extra component to keep track of etc.

Couldn't one just remove the stocks from the game and still remain with the interesting core concept of combining a word game with buying patents and just play to see who ends up with the most money at the end, as normal.

I like my word games to be accessible to non-gamers and to have throw around terminology like patents, stocks, royalties, and special abilities all at the start of the game I think it pushes the boundary of what a non-gamer can absorb.

And, in that light, it seems like the stocks could just be removed from the game without any negative effect and therefore be a bit more "streamlined".

So could the stocks be removed from the game without much harm?
 
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Brad Brooks
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The stocks are a balancing mechanism. If someone was fortunate enough to be dealt a big word on their first turn and got rewarded in just money they could buy a high value patent and potentially have an insurmountable lead. By moving some of their payout into stocks they still get rewarded with end-game points for making long words but it doesn't tip the balance of the game as much.
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Evan Duly
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What I'm suggesting is keeping the amount of the pay out the same as it is currently, but just remove the stock element of the pay out. So there won't be as big of a reward for completing larger words. For example, if the pay out for a 7 letter word is currently 4$ and 1$ stock, the player will just receive the 4$ and nothing else.

With this type of pay out, there would be slightly less incentive to go for bigger words but I don't see it being much of an issue for balance or anything.

What do you think?
 
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Brad Brooks
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First off, you own the game so feel free to try out whatever variant you want and if you feel it's worth sharing please post here about it.

Removing some of the incentive for longer words could make the patent powers that tend to trigger with smaller words (V, B, J, K) more valuable. But since your goal is to streamline the explanation and play that might not be an issue.
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Siel Oren
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i don't understand the question....
you win the game with points, stocks give you more points, what reason is there to remove them from game..??
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Evan Duly
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EvanDevan wrote:


I like my word games to be accessible to non-gamers and to have throw around terminology like patents, stocks, royalties, and special abilities all at the start of the game I think it pushes the boundary of what a non-gamer can absorb.

And, in that light, it seems like the stocks could just be removed from the game without any negative effect and therefore be a bit more "streamlined".

 
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David Gleason-Rohrer
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I have only played one time, but the stocks seem to me to be the least important part of the game. The absence of stocks would not affect my gameplay at all. That said one of my favorite moments from the game I played was scoring double on a long word and getting an extra stock as well. If I take this game on a trip, I will take the cards in a much smaller box and leave the stocks at home.
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Matt D
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EvanDevan wrote:
EvanDevan wrote:


I like my word games to be accessible to non-gamers and to have throw around terminology like patents, stocks, royalties, and special abilities all at the start of the game I think it pushes the boundary of what a non-gamer can absorb.

And, in that light, it seems like the stocks could just be removed from the game without any negative effect and therefore be a bit more "streamlined".



All due respect, if you want a word game to be accessible to non-gamers, then you are probably better off with a hundred or so other word games that DON'T have any kind of more complicated mechanic. Trying to adjust the rules of this game which is already fairly complex to fit a square game into a round hole is just silly IMO.

But to address your question (which others have), the stocks are required to both reward spelling longer words and remove the ability for a first turn super word to give someone a jumpstart to an insurmountable lead.

I was curious about them first and didn't understand their inclusion until I played the game. It's a way to grant more points without buying power. If you could buy an $8 patent on the first turn that could be huge over the course of the game.

And if you just remove them to reduce the benefit to larger words, you also make the few bonus patents hugely powerful.

If I have V (can use two words) and K (I think - the one that gives you a double bonus for having at least half be vowels), then I can just keep grinding away making small words with double bonuses if you cap out large words. And my opponents have no way to combat that. But with the way it is set up, they can still spell larger words and make more with their larger words than I do with my two smaller words. Which they should, because two smaller words are way easier than one large word.

This is one thing I've found that drives me nuts - if you want to play with a variant, do that, but why complain about a mechanic of the game that works, just because you think it serves your purposes better?

I mean, seriously, I could rattle off 10 very simple word games off the top of my head. This game is specifically designed to be a word game for people that enjoy other games, who might not otherwise enjoy YET ANOTHER game of Scrabble.

Not everything has to appeal to everybody.
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Evan Duly
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hestiansun wrote:


...why complain about a mechanic of the game that works, just because you think it serves your purposes better?

Not everything has to appeal to everybody.


I was just asking a question about one aspect of the game, I wasn't intending for it to be a complaint.

I got the answer I was looking for. I understand the purpose of the stocks now and how they are important for balance in the game.

Have a good one.





 
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