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Subject: Terra Mystica - unenjoyable grind fest? rss

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Scott

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Does anyone else find this game unenjoyable?

I can see why people like this game, but for me is not that fun. Firstly, the color scheme is bland and ugly, and the buildings don't really inspire me. I also wish the board wasn't static (leading to "best starting positions" and pre-set moves) and the game wasn't such a drag.

I, personally, like games with a lot of freedom and choice. This game seems to have very little. You are always hindered by money, stupid cubes, and power. Usually I will need one of the "power" items on the board, but invariably someone will take it before me, leaving my entire round useless and without options.

Furthermore, the game is too punishing. Too much brain-burn, too much min-maxing to be fun. Some people like the minimum luck, but I find it boring and without excitement. Also the cult track is tacked on. I hate playing the rest of the game great, only to lose because someone is high up on two or more cult tracks. I realize it's "part of the game," but is a stupid part of the game that makes no sense.

I hope this doesn't sound like a hate-fest, because I still play this game time and again. Still looking for that first win, however, after 6+ plays. Just not my game, I guess.

(another thing that irks me about the game is just completing stuff to get points, especially at the end of the game - like upgrading your shipping just for points; or just building a certain building because the "game told you so." I like some theme in games, but this game just felt too 'gamey.' I never felt like a cool race of beings trying to dominate a world, just a guy looking for a few more points and money so I could buy the giant rectangular building which give me more money next round. bleh)
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Ken Thibodeau
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Grabbing popcorn...
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Marc B
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There's not a whole lot of theme in the game (although you can make some of those thematic connections if you try). But the things you dislike about the game, a lot of people really like (people like me!). I enjoy optimizing the resources you have to find the best way to score lots of points. I also don't find the game very limiting at all. The first time I played the game, I loved how many things you can do and how many resources you get. Even if you struggle (like I did that first game), you are accumulating so much stuff and you have so many options for what to do with that stuff, which I found really enjoyable, in contrast to a game like Agricola, which I played for the first time on that same day, and found it very punishing.

I've also noticed that some games people just seem to love don't do much for me. I will play them, but they don't give me the same feeling as game I really enjoy (like Terra Mystica). I'm sure there's a game you love that I would have the same reaction to. Unfortunately, you'll probably find more people who disagree with you on this forum than people who agree with you (just because people who like it will jump to defend it).

To each their own.
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King Maple
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Congratulations!

You have discovered that no game is great for everybody!

And this is perfectly fine! It's better to play games that work for you than trying to convince yourself or have others convince you as if you are wrong. You are not wrong when it comes to your likes and dislikes.

I'd rather like to know what games DO you like?
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Robert
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Those evil game designers ...
... use annoying primary colors for the game!
... purposefully limit our resources and thus deny us the pleasure of always making whatever move we want!
... force us to think ahead!
... force us to do things just for points if we want to do well!

This post made my day - it's is a hilarious piece of satire! thumbsup



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chris thatcher
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Quote:
Does anyone else find this game unenjoyable?


Many people (Me included).

Not all games are for everyone.
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Bojan Brankov
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As a huge fan of this game I will try to reflect on most of your remarks.

Scozar52 wrote:
Does anyone else find this game unenjoyable?

bland and ugly



Well, this is just a matter of taste. I find it very amusing. It's not a thematic game and yet it has a lot of theme in there with various races that are not too generic. Some of them are quite interesting and unique.

Scozar52 wrote:

also wish the board wasn't static


But it wasn't. There is huge amount of people who played this game 200+ who would disagree with me. But there are no predefined spots on the board. Especially when you are playing 4+ players. Someone will pick a post and then you are going to settle near him, and rush him to a desirable terrain. After 20+ plays I haven't yet seen the same initial setup nor I expect to see it in next 300 games. It has so much variables, it will never be the same. Not static.

Scozar52 wrote:

freedom and choice very little

always hindered by money, stupid cubes, and power

entire round useless and without options


Well, not if you are playing well. The point in this game is that you play efficiently in order to avoid depending on this one action. And believe me, there is always something useful you can do in TM.

Scozar52 wrote:


Too much brain-burn



There is no such thing as too much brain-burn. Then again, I am addicted to high cost efficiency engines like Terra Mystica.

Scozar52 wrote:


stupid part of the game that makes no sense



Depending on who are you playing as. Of course that it will be stupid part that makes no sense to engineers, or dwarves. But there are races who are all about cults. Like cultists for example? Like Chaos Magicians. Like Aurens. In the world of magic, these cults would replace the technology tree in some scifi themed games.

Scozar52 wrote:

this game just felt too 'gamey.'


What??


Judging by your comments it is obvious that this game is not for you. But that's OK. Having said that I think that you will like TM:Gaia Project more, since it will be more thematic, with technologies instead of cults, with planets on modular board which will vary from game to game. I know that I can't wait for it!

Cheers.
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Robert
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Slashdoctor wrote:
I'd rather like to know what games DO you like?
From the profile that includes Dominion and Caverna. Fortunately both are games where planning ahead is not required.

In Caverna particularly, we all know that
- colors are so much fresher than in TM
- resources are always plenty to allow players to do whatever they want
- there's no way that evil opponents tend to take away the action you wanted yourself



Notes:
1) If you find irony in the text above, you're allowed to keep it.
2) I like both TM and Caverna a lot, and it's hard for me to grasp how somebody could complain about those points in TM and still like them in Caverna.
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James Clinch
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I played it for the first time last week and absolutely loved it.

But I can see your point. As you learn the game you move towards maxing your score and learn the optimum moves. The only thing left becomes others getting in your way and how you react to that. Eventually there comes a time when you have it all down and play becomes automatic.

I think that's a general downside to zero luck games, but I think Terra Mystica has more permutations and knots to unpick than the majority of games in this category.
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Jeff Connell
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It's funny to me that the OP rates Eldritch Horror a 9+. I like the game but basically it's move, flip a card, pass skill check. There's generally very few choices in the game especially compared to TM. Selective memory I guess.
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Gannon Dubay
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I find the game very enjoyable. My only real complaint is the map. I wish it were 1) variable instead of static--I don't mind a little bit of unbalancing if it means we get a different board every time and 2) scalable--I wish the board was modular, with a different number of modules depending on player count. We play a lot 2P and sometimes I will purposefully make a less-than-ideal initial settlement placement near my girlfriend's settlements just to make the game more interactive/fun
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Lawrence
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Scozar52 wrote:
Furthermore, the game is too punishing. Too much brain-burn, too much min-maxing to be fun. Some people like the minimum luck

[...]

(another thing that irks me about the game is just completing stuff to get points, especially at the end of the game - like upgrading your shipping just for points


Terra Mystica is a Euro. Many of us like Euros. We like punishing games that have high brain burn and require dedication to min-maxing every last point of the puzzle.

It really sounds like you just don't enjoy how Euro TM is. Maybe you're looking for something more Ameritrashy?
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Lawrence
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jsc19702 wrote:
It's funny to me that the OP rates Eldritch Horror a 9+. I like the game but basically it's move, flip a card, pass skill check. There's generally very few choices in the game especially compared to TM. Selective memory I guess.


Looks like OP also rates Yahtzee a "7", which I'm assuming implies the same level of decision making as TM (also rated a "7"). I can't even right now.
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Scott

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I thought I would get some responses to this post...

I agree with most everybody who has replied. Different games for different gamers. I simply don't enjoy games where I feel "constrained." Someone mentioned Caverna, which I really like, but is a totally different game. I like a game with multiple pathways and multiple options - which can be seen as a good thing or bad thing.

Also, some people relate how "deep" or "strategic" a game is with how high a score it should receive. I don't. I rate games on how much I enjoy them. I do think that Terra Mystica is well-designed; it's a well-crafted game with deep strategy. It's just not my cup of tea - too many plates to keep spinning. I enjoy other "strategy" games more, such as Castles of Burgundy or even Caverna, without feeling like my head will explode.

I hope I didn't upset anyone too much, just wanted to see what everyone's response would be. I do believe Terra Mystica is a little overrated - but to each their own. I really like Xia: LDS, but I will not sit here and say that it is better mechanically or has better strategy; it does not. It just is fun to play.

Also, I happen to enjoy Yahtzee but may have gone a little crazy with my rating. Eldritch Horror is one of my favorite games - even though I can't say why. If someone said they hated, I would understand. It's a dice-luck-fest.
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James Wolfpacker
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FTFY
Scozar52 wrote:
Re: Terra Mystica - unenjoyable grind fest?
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A C
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Scozar52 wrote:
Does anyone else find this game unenjoyable?

Nope. You are the only one.

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James B
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The funny thing is that it *is* all about min-maxing, and that's something I don't particularly like about games, but it's just so much fun?


I think that's because it's a relatively short game. It's like a small little puzzle that has variance in every game. There are only 6 turns, and in that sometimes you take only two or three actions and pass.


I guess I see it as quite a simple puzzle game that you can play differently each time and can ultimately have as much depth as anyone could ever be interested in enough to calculate optimal moves.


It is also THE most successful game in regards to players building next to eachother i.e. the power system and trading post costs encourages players to be next to each-other, yet the downsides of space can also be apparent.
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Kobo
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Not everyone is into complex euro games like TM. No matter how amazing the design of a game may be, if you're not into the style of game then you'll probably dislike it. Nothing wrong with that.
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Adam P
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In Scott's defense this game is indeed a point grind-fest, and the first time I played it was no fun. None of the mechanisms are intuitive and the busy design made it difficult to know where to look for the point efficiencies.

Now I quite enjoy it, but I knew I would over time.


Compare it to Caverna: The Cave Farmers where the actions a player takes are obvious and points aren't totaled until the very end, therefore players don't feel like they are in last place through the whole experience.

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James Wolfpacker
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adamredwoods wrote:
In Scott's defense this game is indeed a point grind-fest, and the first time I played it was no fun. None of the mechanisms are intuitive and the busy design made it difficult to know where to look for the point efficiencies.

Now I quite enjoy it, but I knew I would over time.

Compare it to Caverna: The Cave Farmers where the actions a player takes are obvious and points aren't totaled until the very end, therefore BAD players don't feel like they are in last place through the whole experience.


FTFY!

Contrast Caverna to another newer game: UnFair. I played this and I was constantly attacked, felt like I was in last place the entire game, and I still ended up winning.
 
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Peter Strait
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DocCool wrote:

1) If you find irony in the text above, you're allowed to keep it.


I was going to take the irony... but someone else got to it first. shake
 
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Heitor Berguerand
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It become better with this pieces?

https://www.behance.net/gallery/67668893/Premium-Pieces-for-...
 
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