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Subject: Why I will never again join a "15 minute" game on iOS Fluxx (tiny rant) rss

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Grant Fikes
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This is a quickie post that I'm making because it's on my mind.

I like the idea of playing Fluxx in real time on iOS, especially since I could theoretically play with a friend and not a stranger if we both own the app and arrange to use it at the same time. (For a game like this with hidden information and a lot going on between turns, I much prefer the dynamic of everyone having their own iPad than pass-and-play, which works magnificently for Carcassonne, but not for a game where you want to see what's happening when it's not your turn, but you can't because your opponent has to hide his cards from you.)

That being said, the 15 minute time limit has a bit of a flaw if you join a game started by a stranger: said stranger still determines when the game starts, and has no time limit whatsoever for doing so. Filling the last spot in a 4-player game with a 15 minute time limit for each player is no guarantee that the game will finish within the hour, or that it will even start while you're awake (if you're asleep when your turn comes, you're screwed). At least real-time sites like igGameCenter and BoardGameArena require all players to consent before the game starts, so you can kinda plan for when it will start and end.

Unless you're arranging for all of the spots to be filled by friends who can all agree to be available at the same time, iOS players should avoid the short time limits, and play something much more lenient like 21 days.
 
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Samuel Hinz
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All Playdek games have this same issue when it comes to the host starting the game. Sometimes i have been suspicious and they people deliberately halt the start of the game to get an easy win by timeout.

tyhe easy fix for this is to just always hst your own game.
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ɹǝsɐɹɟ
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Back in the days when there were less maps we played every map back to back
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Ooh a little higher, now a bit to the left, a little more, a little more, just a bit more. Oooh yes, that's the spot!
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That's why with Ascension I always set it for 28 day games. When you are playing people on the other side of the planet there can often be 6-8 hours between moves.
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Grant Fikes
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Karlsen wrote:
That's why with Ascension I always set it for 28 day games. When you are playing people on the other side of the planet there can often be 6-8 hours between moves.


It's not really the time between moves that kills the 15-minute time limit for me, really, but the time between all of the players being at the table and the game proper starting. Still, you have a point: there's a vast difference between how strict time control needs to be when playing synchronously and how forgiving time control needs to be when playing asynchronously with people in different time zones. Time controls in synchronous play are all about keeping things moving and being unforgiving (don't keep your opponent waiting, Kasparov! You lose immediately if that clock runs out!), but forgiveness is the whole aim of asynchronous play, as it allows players to have a real life and still take their turns. I wouldn't hesitate to use a 15-minute time limit in synchronous play of Fluxx, so as to encourage quick moves, but in asynchronous play, it is much more fun to play all of your moves than to run out of time because you just plain didn't have access to your iPad for hours at a time.
 
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