Just Lucky
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
I believe that the use of terms like 'GATEWAY' and 'FILLER' for what are excellent and engaging games is problematic and oddly elitist.


For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'. This means that it is easy to teach to newcomers and they stand a fair chance of winning a game within their first few attempts. Games that are not 'accessible' take a long time to teach all the special rules and an experienced player will always beat a newcomer. To me an 'accessible' game always beats an 'inaccessible' game.

For 'filler' I would prefer 'lifestyle sensitive'. A game that last for six hours is not sensitive to people's lifestyle. A game that lasts for 30 minutes (during a lunch break or before kids' bedtime) is sensitive to people's lifestyle and is going to lead to a lot more enjoyment.

'Gateway' and 'filler' are terms that suggest that there is an ideal game that lasts several hours and requires an expertise to play. Holding such an ideal can make us feel superior if it is what we like to do. These are elitist terms. Many of the best games ever made would fall into my accessible lifestyle sensitive category. Carcassonne for one but I am sure that you can pick your favourity. Monopoly is an example of an inaccessible game (fussy rules like you can't build on stations) and game play of indeterminant length.

I will ONLY play accessible, lifestyle sensitive games.

I suggest that people who design inaccessible games that last for hours should go back to the drawing board and come up with a better game. Maybe if designers of accessible games didn't have to face the terms of gateway or filler being levelled at their designs then more designers would create such excellent games.
20 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul DeStefano
United States
Long Island
New York
flag msg tools
designer
badge
It's a Zendrum. www.zendrum.com
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
It's just words that convey a known meaning.

relax
115 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ryan Metzler
United States
Glendale
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
"Are you pondering what I'm pondering Pinky?"
badge
"Wuhhh... I think so, Brain, but if a ham can operate a radio, why can't a pig set a VCR?"
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just_Lucky wrote:
I believe that the use of terms like 'GATEWAY' and 'FILLER' for what are excellent and engaging games is problematic and oddly elitist.


For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'. This means that it is easy to teach to newcomers and they stand a fair chance of winning a game within their first few attempts. Games that are not 'accessible' take a long time to teach all the special rules and an experienced player will always beat a newcomer. To me an 'accessible' game always beats an 'inaccessible' game.

For 'filler' I would prefer 'lifestyle sensitive'. A game that last for six hours is not sensitive to people's lifestyle. A game that lasts for 30 minutes (during a lunch break or before kids' bedtime) is sensitive to people's lifestyle and is going to lead to a lot more enjoyment.

'Gateway' and 'filler' are terms that suggest that there is an ideal game that lasts several hours and requires an expertise to play. Holding such an ideal can make us feel superior if it is what we like to do. These are elitist terms. Many of the best games ever made would fall into my accessible lifestyle sensitive category. Carcassonne for one but I am sure that you can pick your favourity. Monopoly is an example of an inaccessible game (fussy rules like you can't build on stations) and game play of indeterminant length.

I will ONLY play accessible, lifestyle sensitive games.

I suggest that people who design inaccessible games that last for hours should go back to the drawing board and come up with a better game. Maybe if designers of accessible games didn't have to face the terms of gateway or filler being levelled at their designs then more designers would create such excellent games.


Please tell me this is a troll post.
83 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls

Lacombe
Louisiana
msg tools
badge
Suddenly a shot rang out! A door slammed. The maid screamed. Suddenly a pirate ship appeared on the horizon! While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury. Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just_Lucky wrote:
I will ONLY play accessible, lifestyle sensitive games.


If only you were the guy who awhile back suggested replacing the word "play" with the word "table", this could have read something like "I will only table accessible, lifestyle sensitive adult diversions" and been truly incomprehensible.
50 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Charles Bame
United States
Flagstaff
Arizona
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
A game is a game is a game.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
.308 Jake
Canada
Hamilton
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just_Lucky wrote:
For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'

You don't call marijuana an "accessible" drug.
14 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gary Bacchus
United States
Altamonte Springs
Florida
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
It's a shorthand, no more. Might as well attempt to excise Euro/Ameritrash from the jargon books.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Taylor
Russia
Moscow
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I entirely agree that 'gateway' and 'filler' are snobbish and pejorative.

'Accessible' is a reasonable alternative to 'gateway.' 'Lifestyle sensitive' sounds like a euphemism from a packet of sanitary towels, however.

Also, when you state you'll never play longer, more complicated games, it smacks inverse snobbery. I'm sure this isn't the answer to elitism.

There are many fine, long games. If you are too busy to play them, or they're not to your personal taste, both are cool.

But to make a show that you'll never play such games, and that they should not even be designed, is to reduce yourself to a pastiche of what you're justifiably protesting against.

63 
 Thumb up
0.08
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Gray
United States
Watertown
Connecticut
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
"Lifestyle sensitive"? Good one.
11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dennis Engilis
United States
Elk Grove
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I see nothing problematic or elitist about those two terms. They describe exactly how some games are used at times. Some of my evenings are filled with fillers and gateways. As for "lifestyle sensitive" ... you want to talk about problematic ... you refer to one aspect of one's lifestyle but the term could be used as a gateway to a plethora of lifestyle issues that would prove problematic and could fill an evening with disagreement and discord instead of games. Sorry but I couldn't disagree more.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
jflartner
United States
Conshohocken
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just_Lucky wrote:
I believe that the use of terms like 'GATEWAY' and 'FILLER' for what are excellent and engaging games is problematic and oddly elitist.[/i]

You're putting a judgement on what a lot of people think of these games. I would wager there are hundreds of people out there whose favorite games are gateways and fillers, and who have no problem whatsoever with the terminology.

[q="Just_Lucky"]For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'. This means that it is easy to teach to newcomers and they stand a fair chance of winning a game within their first few attempts. Games that are not 'accessible' take a long time to teach all the special rules and an experienced player will always beat a newcomer. To me an 'accessible' game always beats an 'inaccessible' game.


And for others, an 'inaccessible' game (as you've defined them) will always beat an 'accessible' game. Who are you to define the terms? Fortunately, language is not by the usage of controlled one, but by the usage of many.

Just_Lucky wrote:
For 'filler' I would prefer 'lifestyle sensitive'. A game that last for six hours is not sensitive to people's lifestyle. A game that lasts for 30 minutes (during a lunch break or before kids' bedtime) is sensitive to people's lifestyle and is going to lead to a lot more enjoyment.


Lifestyle sensitive is way too clunky. Besides which, if your goal is to be accurate, 'lifestyle sensitive' misses the mark. Your judgement that a
Just_Lucky wrote:
a game that last[s] for six hours is not sensitive to people's lifestyle.
is quite the leap. These length games fit into a lot of people's lifestyles - otherwise they would never be purchased or played, correct?

Just_Lucky wrote:
'Gateway' and 'filler' are terms that suggest that there is an ideal game that lasts several hours and requires an expertise to play. Holding such an ideal can make us feel superior if it is what we like to do. These are elitist terms. Many of the best games ever made would fall into my accessible lifestyle sensitive category.


For someone claiming to want to change the vocabulary of entire hobby's vernacular because the existing terms are subjective and judgmental, your reasons for wanting to do so are really rather subjective, judgmental, and personally biased.

Just_Lucky wrote:
I suggest that people who design inaccessible games that last for hours should go back to the drawing board and come up with a better game.


This sounds elitist to me. To you, fillers and gateways are superior to more complex games. That's fine. But the above sentence makes me think that there is an ideal game that does not last several hours and does not require an expertise to play. To suggest that complex games simply should not exist is just swinging the pendulum way too far in the opposite direction.

Try to remember that language is not just what you bring to it. Language is the complex, collective process of assignment meaning to arbitrary combinations of letters and sounds.

If you aren't comfortable with 'gateway' or 'filler,' that's fine, don't use them. But be prepared to explain yourself when you use the terms 'accessible' and 'lifestyle sensitive.' If they catch on, then they catch on - that's how language works.
25 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Boeren
United States
Marietta
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't see gateway as a pejorative term. It has a well known meaning, and acts as a shorthand for some combination of "easy to teach", "not too long", "friendly theme", etc...

It doesn't necessarily mean that playing it means you're dumb or that it's a game that experienced gamers wouldn't touch. Personally I view it as a minor compliment if you phrase it a little differently.

"Game X is pretty good, it's about A, B, and C, and it's *also* a great gateway game because it's easy to teach to new players".


Filler has maybe a touch of negative about it. It generally denotes a fairly short game that is mainly for winding down or taking a break between heavier games. In that sense, it's quite easy to read it as "taking a break between REAL games", implying the filler game is sort of mindless. And, often it sort of is, or at least it's fairly light. Doesn't mean it can't be fun too but it's probably being played more socially than to win.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Patrick C.
United States
Milford
New Hampshire
flag msg tools
Because I served, I will resist
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I also don't think the terms themselves are inherently negative. Someone might say a game is "a great filler!" and that will be a compliment.

That being said, the jargon use does annoy me. True, the use of jargon is common to any hobby such as this.

The problem, however, is that games are so much more social than bird watching, photography, gardening, etc. Part of this hobby is interacting with others and, at least for some people, trying to attract others to join us. The terms do come of as a bit elitist to the unconverted.

However much these terms make me cranky, however, I realize I can't do anything about it.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Benjamin Maggi
United States
Loudonville
NY
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
No one is stopping you from calling them whatever you want to.
10 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls

Lacombe
Louisiana
msg tools
badge
Suddenly a shot rang out! A door slammed. The maid screamed. Suddenly a pirate ship appeared on the horizon! While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury. Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The only real problem with your suggestion, really, is that you've gone in exactly the other direction.

Just call the games "light" vs "heavy" or "short" vs "long", which avoids pinning on any value judgments.
44 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Shillinglaw
Canada
Kitchener
Ontario
flag msg tools
This is what I play.
badge
Vegatable Alien is perlexed by slab of meat.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
trippercook wrote:
Just_Lucky wrote:
For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'

You don't call marijuana an "accessible" drug.


LMAO
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
CHAPEL
United States
Round Rock
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
"that's a smith and wesson, and you've had your six"
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I like to call them "Games for Newbs" and "Games for Slower Newbs", but YMMV.
55 
 Thumb up
0.05
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
rob cavallo
United States
roseland
New Jersey
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
trippercook wrote:
Just_Lucky wrote:
For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'

You don't call marijuana an "accessible" drug.


it helps food "access" your mouth quicker, and in larger quantities.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve B
United States
Rochester
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mb
I don't see an issue with the term "Gateway" at all.

It's a nice way to describe those games and the term harks back to the days in elementary school when they talked about "Gateway drugs". Do some of those and you spiral out of control and ruin your life/finances by doing more and more drugs. Gateway games? Play some of those and you spiral out of control and ruin your life/finances by buying more and more games.

"Filler" is a term that I do find a little degrading. What's wrong with a "Filler" type game? Anything? Not that I can see. People are socializing and (generally) having a good time. So when I've been told "When you guys are done with your filler game..." Why did you have to call it a "filler" game? What about it makes it LESS important than the larger, heavier, 3+ hour games you want to play?

It's little, I know, but it just gets to me for some reason.
6 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Isaac Finkelstein
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
NateStraight wrote:
The only real problem with your suggestion, really, is that you've gone in exactly the other direction.

Just call the games "light" vs "heavy" or "short" vs "long", which avoids pinning on any value judgments.


Nate has it exactly right.

Also, your original post is wildly, aggressively hypocritical.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Pater Absurdus
United States
Carrollton
Texas
flag msg tools
There's really no wrong way to use a margarita pool
badge
"What is best in Life? To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women."
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I halfway agree with your sentiment but the way you expressed it was pretty hard core.

I actually think that the turns themselves are very useful and are often well used. The problem is that some people use them in a derogatory way. That is annoying. But people could use your terms in an elitist way as well.

After a nice first game of a "gateway game" I might say to the group "that was really fun!" just to have another play say "yeah... it was a good 'accessible game' (insert obnoxious air quotes here) I guess..." yuk

It happens on occasion now and it would happen if we changed the term. Some people will use whatever terms are common and descriptive in an irritating way. Retard, idiot, and imbecile were all previously used as technical terms. They have been high jacked but using new words hasn't changed anything.

Niceness is the answer not changing the jargon. cool
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
jflartner
United States
Conshohocken
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
MWChapel wrote:
I like to call them "Games for Newbs" and "Games for Slower Newbs", but YMMV.


My house is similar.

gateway game = game for idiots

filler = game for morons

heavier, complex game = game for super extreme genius overlords

Unfortunately, my favorite games are games for idiots and games for morons. But, what can I do? We have to call them what we have to call them!
42 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Charles Bame
United States
Flagstaff
Arizona
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Quote:
"Filler" is a term that I do find a little degrading. What's wrong with a "Filler" type game? Anything? Not that I can see. People are socializing and (generally) having a good time. So when I've been told "When you guys are done with your filler game..." Why did you have to call it a "filler" game? What about it makes it LESS important than the larger, heavier, 3+ hour games you want to play?

Agree!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
If Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Then Actions x2 Speak Louder Than Actions
United States
Las Vegas
Nevada
flag msg tools
badge
One of the Original Twelve
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I called Domaine a filler once and my friend was flabbergasted. As our gaming tastes began to distill, I began playing meatier games and he played more fillers.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Derek
United States
Sioux Falls
South Dakota
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
trippercook wrote:
Just_Lucky wrote:
For 'gateway' I would prefer 'accessible'

You don't call marijuana an "accessible" drug.


I wouldn't call it a "gateway" either.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5  Next »  [6] | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.