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Subject: Why Agricola is a waste of money... rss

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Geoff Burkman
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Jeff wrote:
The problem with this review isn't that the OP didn't like the game. It's the hyperbole....the content gets lost in a sea of hyperbole and inflammatory statements, so the meaning is completely lost. I don't know why anyone's shocked that he got the response he was looking for.

Agreed. I still think the OP was just trolling anyway. I noticed that despite his claim to having sold his copy (which may well be true), he still has it listed as "owned" in his collection, as well as rated "7", which is hardly an inferior rating. And perhaps most telling, he hasn't had a thing to say in this thread since.
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Enrico Viglino
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Jeff wrote:
The problem with this review isn't that the OP didn't like the game. It's the hyperbole.

"waste of money"
"lame"
"forced myself to play it"
"it was hard playing it 5 times"
"only 1 out of 8 liked it"
"Age of Empires 3 is 100x better"

I'm sure the OP thinks that some of the statements above are true. But all of the statements put together in a single review with such an inflammatory title "Why Agricola is a waste of money" is just hyperbole -- designed to troll, not to add a voice of dissent.

Such statements make reading about someone's impression far more
interesting. I generally prefer hyperbole to other forms of communication
though. Far better than the 'this is ok for some people' track that
most take.


MisterG wrote:

Agreed. I still think the OP was just trolling anyway. I noticed that despite his claim to having sold his copy (which may well be true), he still has it listed as "owned" in his collection, as well as rated "7", which is hardly an inferior rating. And perhaps most telling, he hasn't had a thing to say in this thread since.


Pity. One hoped it was an honest expression. If not, it is worthless.

Still, one can't really judge someone's taste by ratings.
People have so many different ways of determining these. With
the statements he made, I probably would be more inclined to the
5 or 6 range - because I know enough games that truly deserve
worse than disliking theme, disconnected from reality, and ending
too soon.


Now, looking at the OP's ratings, 7 is actually the LOWEST rating
he's given. Perhaps he's using the BGG guidelines to determine these,
and is willing to play games he doesn't even like. I know pretty
much everything would rate that highly for me, if I followed the
suggestions for how to rate here. I like playing games - even those
I don't like.
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Fernando Robert Yu
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MisterG wrote:
Jeff wrote:
The problem with this review isn't that the OP didn't like the game. It's the hyperbole....the content gets lost in a sea of hyperbole and inflammatory statements, so the meaning is completely lost. I don't know why anyone's shocked that he got the response he was looking for.

Agreed. I still think the OP was just trolling anyway. I noticed that despite his claim to having sold his copy (which may well be true), he still has it listed as "owned" in his collection, as well as rated "7", which is hardly an inferior rating. And perhaps most telling, he hasn't had a thing to say in this thread since.

I seem to recall the OP doing the same thing somewhere....which is why the name was familiar...and yes the non-response is typical troller behavior...he must be rolling around laughing by all the responses generated..
 
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Enrico Viglino
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freddieyu wrote:


I seem to recall the OP doing the same thing somewhere....which is why the name was familiar...and yes the non-response is typical troller behavior...he must be rolling around laughing by all the responses generated..

Troll or no, it's generated an interesting discussion.

Personally, I don't give a crap what someone else gets out of it -
if he's laughing, let him enjoy. If it was uninteresting to those
involved, they wouldn't be.
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Fernando Robert Yu
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calandale wrote:
freddieyu wrote:


I seem to recall the OP doing the same thing somewhere....which is why the name was familiar...and yes the non-response is typical troller behavior...he must be rolling around laughing by all the responses generated..

Troll or no, it's generated an interesting discussion.

Personally, I don't give a crap what someone else gets out of it -
if he's laughing, let him enjoy. If it was uninteresting to those
involved, they wouldn't be.

Agreed..

I take it then that you will be posting your video review after purchasing and playing it of course. I will be looking forward to it.
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Enrico Viglino
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freddieyu wrote:

I take it then that you will be posting your video review after purchasing and playing it of course. I will be looking forward to it.

Yup. And likely judging it on all sorts of things
it's not trying to do. :D

But, the mention that it doesn't accurately represent farming
has lowered the price at which I'll buy it.
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Geoff Burkman
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calandale wrote:
...But, the mention that it doesn't accurately represent farming
has lowered the price at which I'll buy it.

It's no worse than Caylus attempting to represent town/castle-building or Le Havre attempting to represent a shoreline economy, or for that matter, Dominant Species attempting to represent survival of the fittest via natural selection. They're all abstract worker placement games with thematic party masks. If you like that sort of thing (I do), they're all rather excellent games.
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Enrico Viglino
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Oh bother. I already own Dominant Species.

Ah well, at least I got it cheaply.

I prefer my abstractions to be wholly so.
 
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Benjamin Kerenza
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calandale wrote:
But, the mention that it doesn't accurately represent farming
has lowered the price at which I'll buy it.

If you want a true farming simulation and trowel, fork and a packet of seeds would be much cheaper
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calandale wrote:


But, the mention that it doesn't accurately represent farming
has lowered the price at which I'll buy it.

As a game of course it's an abstraction.
But, it is a more representative of farming, than, for example Carcassonne's farmers. So if you don't hold the abstraction against Carcassonne, definitely don't hold it against Agricola.

For more of an accurate simulation of farming, there's always Farmville, with its temporally consistent harvesting, crop-spoiling, and fallow lands.
 
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Enrico Viglino
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JohnnyDollar wrote:
calandale wrote:


But, the mention that it doesn't accurately represent farming
has lowered the price at which I'll buy it.

As a game of course it's an abstraction.
But, it is a more representative of farming, than, for example Carcassonne's farmers. So if you don't hold the abstraction against Carcassonne, definitely don't hold it against Agricola.

Carcassonne fails as a model of anything. That doesn't mean
I can't enjoy the game, but it doesn't represent anything.
May be a perfect expression of the idea of theme being there
to merely remind people of the rules. As with Chess.

Quote:
For more of an accurate simulation of farming, there's always Farmville, with its temporally consistent harvesting, crop-spoiling, and fallow lands. :p[

The facebook thing? I don't remember that being an accurate model.
Nor an interesting one. But no, I'm not looking for a detailed simulation -
I'm looking for something which believably represents farming.
Say on the level of a Power Grid - a euro which actually seems to
be about what it's about.

Wisely, my willingness to purchase euros has dropped. A couple of early
good buys made me think there were a lot more that I'd enjoy than
seems to be the case.
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Andy Leighton
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Jeff wrote:
The problem with this review isn't that the OP didn't like the game. It's the hyperbole.

"waste of money"
"lame"
"forced myself to play it"
"it was hard playing it 5 times"
"only 1 out of 8 liked it"
"Age of Empires 3 is 100x better"

I'm sure the OP thinks that some of the statements above are true. But all of the statements put together in a single review with such an inflammatory title "Why Agricola is a waste of money" is just hyperbole -- designed to troll, not to add a voice of dissent.

Especially when you can see that he rates Agricola a 7! He hasn't rated Age Of Empires.
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Mathue Faulkner
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calandale wrote:

The facebook thing? I don't remember that being an accurate model.
Nor an interesting one. But no, I'm not looking for a detailed simulation -
I'm looking for something which believably represents farming.
Say on the level of a Power Grid - a euro which actually seems to
be about what it's about.
I'd say that Agricola represents farming waaaay more than Power Grid represents constructing an electric empire...
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Tadeu Zubaran
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calandale wrote:
I'm looking for something which believably represents farming. Say on the level of a Power Grid

Ok, I was reading your comments as a curiosity as they seamed to have something behind them, but you just lost me right here.
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Enrico Viglino
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mfaulk80 wrote:

I'd say that Agricola represents farming waaaay more than Power Grid represents constructing an electric empire...

tkzubaran wrote:


Ok, I was reading your comments as a curiosity as they seamed to have something behind them, but you just lost me right here.

Ok, so I take it PG isn't terribly 'true' to the power industry.
That's ok. I don't need to get my hands covered in pig excrement
to be presented with a believable farming experience.

Basically, I just want decisions which make some sense in
the light of my limited experience. If 10 pigs produce as many
children as 1 does, that's going to stretch my suspension of
disbelief in a way that buying materials in PG does not. When
I look at a game such as Die Macher, I can almost intuitively
tell that there is something wrong, without having to know
the details of German politics - no system could work that way.

For PG, I can see some 'gamey' aspects (the limit on number of
generators for example) which don't ring true - but the overall
is enough to fool me. It's not the only thing which decides how
much I like a game, but it's pretty important.
 
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calandale wrote:

Ok, so I take it PG isn't terribly 'true' to the power industry.

Yeah, it's actually more of a train game than anything else.
whistle
 
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JohnnyDollar wrote:
calandale wrote:

Ok, so I take it PG isn't terribly 'true' to the power industry.

Yeah, it's actually more of a train game than anything else.
:whistle:

See, now that I wouldn't find believable. Purchasing raw materials,
to fuel my engine (what is it? the trading structure itself? contracts?)
just doesn't fit in the same manner as the power analogy.

 
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UnknownParkerBrother wrote:

"2 sheep have 1 baby." Makes sense.
"10 sheep have 1 baby?" That's a bit odd.
"100 sheep can only have 1 baby!" What the?

I always explain that it's "a gangbang situation" and that helps people understand.
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Mike T
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calandale wrote:

If 10 pigs produce as many children as 1 does, that's going to stretch my suspension of disbelief in a way that buying materials in PG does not.

I don't understand why people always get so hung up on the breeding rule.

I'll tell you what, change the breeding rule any way you see fit to match your idea of how actual breeding on a farm works (how does it work, anyway? I have no idea. For all I know, 10 pigs would produce something like 50 piglets, provided that 9 of the pigs were female).

You can change the rule in such a fashion because in most games of Agricola, it doesn't matter! You seldom have 4 or more animals of a type early enough in the game to get your crazy super breeding engine going, and even if you did, it would only provide food and a maximum of 4 points per animal type. So, go nuts, let them breed.
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smcmike wrote:
calandale wrote:

If 10 pigs produce as many children as 1 does, that's going to stretch my suspension of disbelief in a way that buying materials in PG does not.

I don't understand why people always get so hung up on the breeding rule.

I'm merely taking it from here.

But the reason is probably because it is so inherently against
what common conception is. This is what designer's notes are about -
if you violate a commonly held understanding, or choose one of competing
theories - making the game less believable, you should defend/explain that
in the notes.

If you can't even get stuff that people find inherently obvious right,
one assumes any more esoteric decisions were also flawed.
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calandale wrote:

Ok, so I take it PG isn't terribly 'true' to the power industry.
That's ok. I don't need to get my hands covered in pig excrement
to be presented with a believable farming experience.

Basically, I just want decisions which make some sense in
the light of my limited experience. If 10 pigs produce as many
children as 1 does, that's going to stretch my suspension of
disbelief in a way that buying materials in PG does not. When
I look at a game such as Die Macher, I can almost intuitively
tell that there is something wrong, without having to know
the details of German politics - no system could work that way.

For PG, I can see some 'gamey' aspects (the limit on number of
generators for example) which don't ring true - but the overall
is enough to fool me. It's not the only thing which decides how
much I like a game, but it's pretty important.
If anything, the 'breeding rule' sticks out more because Agricola is more thematic than Power Grid. There are plenty of things that are very 'gamey' in Power Grid, but they may not stick out to you as much because the game is more abstract (not that it is completely abstract). Power Grid has stepped away from the intricacies of its theme enough that it's difficult to pick it apart in the same way that you can with Agricola. The more a designer delves into the intricacies of a particular theme, the more difficult it is to avoid some 'gamey' rules while still maintaining some balance in gameplay....
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Enrico Viglino
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I'll have to take your word for the abstraction level of Agricola.
It IS often more difficult to get it right at higher levels of
detail. But, raw materials in - energy out doesn't strike me as
too much more abstract than pigs beget pigs.

Still, Mike (two posts above) indicated that it doesn't matter
if you use a more reasonable model for reproduction. If that's the
case, the designer apparently purposefully broke with expectations.
Now, in some less abstract game than PG, it doesn't seem much to
ask to have the underlying model explained, if it doesn't even add
to gameplay.

Basically, the point is, you just CAN'T think that the number of
pigs involved in breeding doesn't affect the number coming out.
So the designer HAD to have something in mind here.
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Mike T
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My REAL point is that your "expectation" for breeding likely has absolutely nothing to do with actual, real-life, pig breeding. Two parents = 1 piglet? I don't think so. And, of course, breeding lambs and cattle are two completely different things as well!

It is strange that this is the thing that bothers you. It is one of the thematic elements in a game with a whole lot of elements that have absolutely nothing to do with the theme... specifically the core worker-placement mechanism.
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Geoff Burkman
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Maybe it stemmed from a simple desire to keep the number of animeeples (or cubes, whichever) within reasonable bounds.
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Fernando Robert Yu
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Hmmm....

On animals and breeding...I am a vet by profession, specifically a vet involved in the food industry...

In a real farm situation, having more animals increases the risk of disease incidences and also poses a real challenge in meeting the management and feeding requirements of the animals. This means that the more dense the farm, more livestock gets lost to diseases, and breeding animals are actually not as "fit" to breed since they are nutritionally more deprived. Remember that during those days vaccines and medication were not available, and diseases such as swine fever, bluetongue, etc. were much more prevalent. A typical family in Agricola is challenged to feed themselves, what more their animals? If you look at it in this way, the breeding system in Agricola actually is MORE realistic and thematic, as it represents the real situation which a farm faces when you increase animal density in a non-modern farming operation.
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