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Subject: Why oh why should we play with concealed cards??? rss

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Björn Fink
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I've read this around here several times...we never hide our cards, it doesn't make no sense at all...can someone please explain to me we should hide the cards in a cooperative game?????
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To simulate the 'fog of war' that exists inside any bureaucracy.

Personally, I find it anti-fun so I play with an open hand.
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eryn roston
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xbjoernx wrote:
I've read this around here several times...we never hide our cards, it doesn't make no sense at all...can someone please explain to me we should hide the cards in a cooperative game?????


I think this is addressed in the rules somewhere but essentially it's meant to foster more communication and shield players a bit from one person taking over the whole game.

If the cards are open it's more tempting for one person to just look at everything on the table and say "okay you do this and you do that, than I'll go here and she'll do the other thing".
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xbjoernx wrote:
I've read this around here several times...we never hide our cards, it doesn't make no sense at all...can someone please explain to me we should hide the cards in a cooperative game?????


I think the only reason for it is to prevent the "Team Captain" syndrome where one player directs every move. If you don't have anyone like that in your group, then don't worry about it.

I like having closed hands. I find it encourages good communication, which is essential to the cooperative experience. But I also like not having to analyze everyone's cards and conceivable plays all at once during the game. At that point I feel like I'm playing a videogame solo, not a cooperative boardgame.

Just depends on your group's style. If you enjoy it more with open cards, play it open.
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Dan Poe
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Hello,

I believe the reason to "hide" cards are as follows:

1. To simulate an information delay.

2. To make the game harder. If you don't think of asking someone about a card, or someone forgets that they have a card, the team is at a disadvantage. If the cards are face up, the other members of the team can see that if they take a big risk, that someone has cards to help them or not.

3. To end the game. Obviously its not the main reason, but if someone does not like the game (which is outrageous) they can just not play that airlift in the middle of the game that would save the team and stop the black disease from encompassing the world.

Those are my thoughts.

Have fun,

Daniel
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Brad
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dbpoe wrote:
1. To simulate an information delay.


I never thought about this rule from a thematic standpoint. I like it. I'm picturing a team of specialists required to communicate verbally by mobile satphone.
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Kent Reuber
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We've always played with open cards.
 
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Aaron
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Because it keeps shy players from being trampled by the alpha players. They actually have to contribute something, even if that something is only saying what they have in their hand.
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Corin A. Friesen
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I've always played with open cards... only because I play on BSW. If I had a real copy, I would play with closed hands.

But that is just my personal preference. I think anyone should be free to play the way they want to play in any game with any rule if they have more fun with the change. After all, what's a board game for?
 
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Chris Talbot
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It's far more difficult with closed hands, but more fun with open hands. That's my experience.

Chris
 
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Paul Leoncavallo
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dbpoe wrote:
1. To simulate an information delay.


This is my understanding as well. I think it promotes more communication as well since you have to keep asking what people have instead of just looking around at the table.
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There must have been a moment at the beginning, where we could have said no. Somehow we missed it. Well, we'll know better next time.
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DarkoBeta wrote:
dbpoe wrote:
1. To simulate an information delay.


I never thought about this rule from a thematic standpoint. I like it. I'm picturing a team of specialists required to communicate verbally by mobile satphone.


And I think the rules even describe it thematically as such.
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Jason Martin
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Playing with cards revealed is just make-work. It just means you need to talk more, and thus slow the game down. Pointless.
 
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Ryan G
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It really prevents someone from bossing you and other players around.

What I like to do is play with closed hands and make suggestions like

"Hey, can you meet me for dinner in Washington DC? I can make things worth your while if you have a lot of blue cards, etc."

It makes the came a lot more cordial and fun.
 
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Simon Lundström
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What so many posters have said before: It stops one from just commending all the others.

We played with open hands the first go, so that we would grasp the rules, but have played with closed since and never looked back. It's much more fun to talk about what you have on your hand and discuss, than just sit there and say "OK... this is my hand... what should I do?". Or having other players do so.
 
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Darrell Overton
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kentreuber wrote:
We've always played with open cards.

Same with us
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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From a theoretical standpoint, concealing the cards makes no difference whatsoever on the optimum strategy if people are allowed to freely discuss the cards. You may see it as an inconvenience -- You have access to all of the same information, but you have to talk to people to get it instead of just looking around.

But the fun of the game is in finding the optimal strategy. Concealing your cards may not change the outcome at the game, but it does change how you arrive at that outcome. Effective communication and information processing are important skills for playing the game with concealed hands. Leave the hands face-up, and those skills are diminished or thrown out entirely. I believe the game design intended for you to use and practice those skills. If all you are interested in is playing a problem-solving game, play with face-up hands. But if all you were interested in was a problem-solving game, you could just play it solitaire.
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Tim Stellmach
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Anjohl wrote:
Playing with cards revealed is just make-work. It just means you need to talk more, and thus slow the game down. Pointless.

Because, you know, in real life people always comminicate with 100% effectiveness.

In other words, you're talking total nonsense. Effective communication is part of the game, as is the case with many cooperative games. You're free to play some other way, but pretending there's no difference is just crazy talk.
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Scott Muldoon (silentdibs)
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Anjohl wrote:
Playing with cards revealed is just make-work. It just means you need to talk more, and thus slow the game down. Pointless.

I know! Stupid talking, getting in the way of my games.
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I'm sure it's a combination of all those reasons, but the thematic reason is mentioned explicitly in the rules.

To paraphrase a section of the rule book:
Quote:
"...like the real world, the players do not immediately know everything that the other players do. To simulate this, players may not show the contents of their hands..."


It's thematic and it accomplishes everything that was mentioned above (encouraging communication, limiting the alpha-gamers). Small rule, big impact.
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Christopher Onstad
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xbjoernx wrote:
I've read this around here several times...we never hide our cards, it doesn't make no sense at all...can someone please explain to me we should hide the cards in a cooperative game?????


In the base game there really isn't much reason. But I have changed my mind now that the expansion has come out. Hiding cards is very good practice for playing with the bioterrorist from the expansion. Once you include a bioterrorist you will want to keep information a bit more discrete. I mean, if you let the bioterrorist see your hand you are never going to catch him. So it's good practice when playing a regular (or irregular) game without the bioterrorist to practice communicating without actually showing.
 
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Jason Martin
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Bourboncrew wrote:
I'm sure it's a combination of all those reasons, but the thematic reason is mentioned explicitly in the rules.

To paraphrase a section of the rule book:
Quote:
"...like the real world, the players do not immediately know everything that the other players do. To simulate this, players may not show the contents of their hands..."


It's thematic and it accomplishes everything that was mentioned above (encouraging communication, limiting the alpha-gamers). Small rule, big impact.


Do you always do what they tell you to?

*I* play *MY* boardgames how *I* want. Who's to say the designer made the game correctly? Most games need a tweak or two, just like a guitar, a car, or a woman.
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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Anjohl wrote:
Bourboncrew wrote:
I'm sure it's a combination of all those reasons, but the thematic reason is mentioned explicitly in the rules.

To paraphrase a section of the rule book:
Quote:
"...like the real world, the players do not immediately know everything that the other players do. To simulate this, players may not show the contents of their hands..."


It's thematic and it accomplishes everything that was mentioned above (encouraging communication, limiting the alpha-gamers). Small rule, big impact.


Do you always do what they tell you to?

*I* play *MY* boardgames how *I* want. Who's to say the designer made the game correctly? Most games need a tweak or two, just like a guitar, a car, or a woman.


Correctly is subjective, and nobody is telling you how you should play the game. We are just giving reasons why the way the game was designed works effectively. If you don't like it, don't play like that. That doesn't make anyone right or wrong.
 
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Jason Martin
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Your opposition backs up my position better than it does your own. I am as qualified to change a board game I buy as the designers are, so I do.
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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I wouldn't call it opposition. I didn't say your way was better, but I didn't say it was worse. It's just different.

The thread directly asked what the reasons were for playing with concealed cards. You don't have to agree with the reasons given, but don't accuse people of trying to force their play style on you when they are just responding to a query.
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