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Subject: No, you're WRONG! rss

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Randall Peek
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Preston
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After seeing Rudiger Dorn's gracious posts recently to perceived problems with Goa, I got to thinking. Does a designer ever make an official ruling only to have some clueless player tell them that, no, that is NOT the way the game should be played?

Player A: I play "Monkey Pox" and we were wondering if the Divine Llama card can be played during the Auction Phase or only during the Battle phase?
Player B: We had the same question, and decided that it can be used in both.
Designer: Actually it can only be used during the Battle phase. That was my intent when I created it.
Player B: What? You're crazy! Obviously it should be used during the Auction Phase too, otherwise the Eskimo Harlot card is vastly underpowered. You are wrong, wrong WRONG!
 
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Magic Pink
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I saw that thread. Some of those responses were just absolutely ridiculous.

 
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Joe Gola
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Redding
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I'm with player B on this one. Why have an Eskimo Harlot card at all if you can only play Divine Llama during the battle phase? And what's to stop people from playing Rude Consensus every single turn and then taking it back into their hand? That designer doesn't know what he's talking about.
 
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The Steak Fairy
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Games? People still play games??
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Specious arguments are not proof of trollish intent.
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The Real Tragedy
Is that Randall is a longtime sufferer from Monkey Pox, and you'd think he'd be more sensitive about the whole "phony game named after an illness" thing.
 
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Gary Webster
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Cackleberries
I'm sure he's sensitive enough, but I think he got the ten-cackleberry bonus and won the first game BECAUSE he played the Eskimo Harlot card the way he thought it should be played, and that's been his strategy ever since!

laugh
 
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Joe Gola
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she had a nice igloo
A parka-chasing friend of mine caught monkey pox from an eskimo harlot once. He had to take an antibiotic the size of a walnut, and even then he never fully regained feeling in certain parts of his tundra. Poor dope.
 
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Jim Cote
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I can't speak to this specific case, but of course a designer can be wrong, in a sense. Maybe they missed an important but subtle condition when writing the rules. Some people find it and ask about it. The designer is 2 games beyond that now, has jet lag from too many gaming conventions, and is being asked to make up an answer to some game he seems to remember being involved with. How do we know the "official" answer is within the spirit of the game, makes sense, or doesn't simply break something else? If they were infallable, there would be no such thing as a FAQ.
 
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Louise Holden
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As a professional interpreter of legislation that my department actually wrote (and part of the team writing new stuff) I'm inclined to think that the designer's intention matters less than what is actually in the rules, which are binding until the publishers endorse official changes. If the rules are ambiguous up until then players can interpret them as they see best.

However that's a bit of a legalese standpoint. In practice it's likely to be a better game if you take some notice of the designer.

And Divine Llama is an excellent username. Or card, come to think of it.
 
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John O'Haver
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No argument on this rule.
The "Show Me Your Ankles" card can only be played on the "Amish Whore"
 
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Inno Van
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Playtesters do this all the time
Back in the 70s games would spring whole formed from the Designers mind without the slightest bit of playtester feedback.

And it was so-so to bad.

Today everyone playtests. But when does the collaberative group effort of game design stop? Isn't the internet just one larger playtest group?

I agree with Mr Ekted. I've seen multiple off-the-cuff comments from game designers that were mistakes. They are only human, and already paid with no further revenue stream coming from the product, so there's not a big incentive for them to burn many braincells anymore on the old product.

Has there been any playtesting with and without the rule change? Has any effort been made to ask the original playtesters to try this out? How much effort was expended by the designer on coming up with this change to the rules and investigating how it changes game balance, because it sure slipped by him the first time.

I also agree with Louise Holden: Until it appears in in a revised rules edition on either the publisher's site or in the case of Michael Schacht the game designer's site, it ain't offical or binding but only opinions. Is it really that hard to post a new .pdf file?

I haven't cracked my copy of Goa yet precisely because I'm waiting for this mess to be sorted out.
 
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Mark Taraba
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Lake in the Hills
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If you're talking about the expedition card thread, I think you are exaggerating what happened. This would be more accurate:

Player A: I play "Monkey Pox" and we were wondering if the Divine Llama card can be played during the Auction Phase or only during the Battle phase?
Player B: We had the same question, and decided that it can be used in both.
Designer: Actually it can only be used during the Battle phase. That was my intent when I created it.
Player C: The publisher has ruled differently for tournament games. You can play with these rules, but be aware the things will be different in a tournament.

Doesn't seem to be anything wrong with that. Maybe I have the wrong article?
 
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