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Subject: Theme + Card games rss

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Are card games less thematic in their design than board games ? I've seen most card game being able to easily boiled down to a "number" games/mathematical mechanic, are there many card game which operates on themes for the most parts ?

Thus when designing games should the focus be on the "mechanic" instead of theme ?
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Klaus Brune
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Depends on how the cards are played. I think Saboteur is pretty thematic for example.
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Sithrak - The god who hates you unconditionally
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I don't see why a card game should be purely mechanical/mathematical, unless you're talking about games that are designed for standard decks.

There are, for one thing, CCGs (and LCGs) which have cards that are usually more flavor than mechanics (Which leads to the traditional balance problems, not that I'm unwilling to work with/around that). And in many Board Games (Mostly CDGs and Ameritrash), cards are specifically used to impart story/backround/flavor, asymmetric powers and variety to the game, then there are card based storytelling games like Yes Master or Fairytales... And that's not the end of it.

So, well, admittedly the most well known card games around here are fairly simplistic math exercises, but that doesn't mean that's all there is to the medium.
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Kevin B. Smith
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Not all card games lack theme. I offer up Dungeoneer: Tomb of the Lich Lord, although I suppose you could argue that it's not *really* a card game, even though the box contains nothing but cards.

But I agree that many/most card games are less thematic than many/most board games.
 
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John "Omega" Williams
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Dragonstorm and other games like for example Ruins World and Arcadia are a mix of these. some number facors and some text events.
 
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Matthew Proper-Lee
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If you look beyond the mainstream and common card games, you'll find many that don't use numbers as shown above. Masquerade is another good one.Doesn't seem like you'd need much research to find quite a few that don't have anything to do with just pasted on theming for a numbers game.
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Kevin B. Smith
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klz_fc wrote:
If you look beyond the mainstream and common card games, you'll find many that don't use numbers as shown above. Masquerade is another good one.Doesn't seem like you'd need much research to find quite a few that don't have anything to do with just pasted on theming for a numbers game.

That's what I thought too, but the OP did say "easily boiled down to a "number" games/mathematical mechanic". In my mind, "mathematical" includes non-numeric card games like Jaipur and Onirim. Maybe if I applied the same broad criteria to board games as well, I would conclude that most of them are also more mechanical than thematic.
 
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Pete Lane
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I would agree that CCGs tend to be more themeatic... Magic recently reinvented themselves a bit by making a "Planeswalker" a much more interesting part of the game (and much more marketable one). So now when you play a card, you know the storyline and can understand why their cards do something particular.
 
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