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Subject: Just another pasted on theme??? rss

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Mrs. Vickies CHIPS
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Oh Mr. Feld, your games are SO good but PLEASEEEEEE make one that is built on the theme (instead of the other way around), and where it actually truly matters! Would be that much more interesting

This looks about as thematic as Luna, and while that was a "nice" theme, and game, it could of had any OTHER theme and still worked; in other words the theme really didn't matter, and was a likely a paste up and after thought same as this looks.

Maybe one day, a person can hope anyway!
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Geeky McGeekface
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A leopard cannot change its spots. Enjoy Herr Feld for the talents he possesses and look elsewhere for close integrations with theme!
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Greg Cox
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I guess this brings up the question of which euro games most closely integrate with their theme? Village comes to mind but it probably would work with another theme as well.
 
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Rob Bell
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Funny that. I've always thought Luna to be quite thematic. Try to take a different perspective.

Feld has stated in interviews that he actually does keep a theme in mind when designing games, but that he will never compromise the gameplay/balance solely for the sake of theme. I love dripping theme in my games, but I sure can't help but respect that standpoint. cool
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Jonathan
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coxy_fc wrote:
I guess this brings up the question of which euro games most closely integrate with their theme? Village comes to mind but it probably would work with another theme as well.


Agricola?
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Nathan Leavitt
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Eclipse - at least I think it's kinda Euro-y.. and the theme is integrated perfectly IMHO.
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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flowercita wrote:
Oh Mr. Feld, your games are SO good but PLEASEEEEEE make one that is built on the theme (instead of the other way around), and where it actually truly matters! Would be that much more interesting

This looks about as thematic as Luna, and while that was a "nice" theme, and game, it could of had any OTHER theme and still worked; in other words the theme really didn't matter, and was a likely a paste up and after thought same as this looks.

Maybe one day, a person can hope anyway!


It wouldn't be a Feld.
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Łukasz Małecki
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Taking into consideration the style of Mr. Feld's games - games of many intricate, interconnected mechanics - I think it would be hard to design a really thematic game, if not impossible. So I tend to agree that thematic Feld wouldn't be Feld at all
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Richard Ham
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I love making Feld lists for no reason! Here's my Feldic Thematic Integration Scale from tightest to loosest:

Luna
Notre Dame
Trajan
Year of the Dragon
Speicherstadt
Rum & Pirates
Macao
Castles of Burgundy
Pillars of the Earth Builders Duel
Roma
It Happens

Haven't played Strasbourgh, Speil mit Lucas, or any of the 4 new ones.
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dyepbr wrote:

It wouldn't be a Feld.


Yep!! Agreed!

And always the same complaints. The games are like this. I love to play them the way they are. The are very successful like this (at least referring to the BGG-Ranking). If I want to play a (more) thematic game I choose something else. But I rarely do, because they are (for me) perfect.
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Tom
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JJWonderboy wrote:
Agricola?

Example of an extremely poor integration of mechanics and theme. I can't procreate because my neighbour is procreating? I think I'd rather play Castles of Burgundy

The whole farming theme just doesn't fit into mechanics based on competition for actions. E.g., in Le Havre theme is suited much better to similar mechanics - it's much more logical that you can't exploit a building when the other group of workers is currently occupying it. But I can't plow my field because my neighbour is plowing his own...?
 
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Lacombe
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solkan1 wrote:
But I can't plow my field because my neighbour is plowing his own...?


Geez. Why does this particular hangup always dominate discussion of theme in Agricola? The remainder of the game is incredibly richly themed and nearly inextricable from the farming theme. How would you explain fields, planting, fences, breeding, cooking, eating, rooms, heating (in the expansion), or any of the thematic special power cards under any other framework? There just is no way. If an inextricable link isn't thematic integration, then y'all are just handwaving.
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Bruce Murphy
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NateStraight wrote:
solkan1 wrote:
But I can't plow my field because my neighbour is plowing his own...?


Geez. Why does this particular hangup always dominate discussion of theme in Agricola? The remainder of the game is incredibly richly themed and nearly inextricable from the farming theme. How would you explain fields, planting, fences, breeding, cooking, eating, rooms, heating (in the expansion), or any of the thematic special power cards under any other framework? There just is no way. If an inextricable link isn't thematic integration, then y'all are just handwaving.


In addition, humans really don't breed on demand that effectively. We're dangerous because we can protect our young, not because we have zillions of them all the time.

The use of worker placement mechanic to generate the entirely thematic uncertainty over when you get younglings is fine. Why aren't you complaining about child labour instead?

B>
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Lacombe
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The use of quantity limited worker placement to induce severe scarcity and opportunity cost is also highly thematic. Farming is, after all, the canonical example for understanding such matters.
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Tom
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NateStraight wrote:
How would you explain fields, planting, fences, breeding, cooking, eating, rooms, heating (in the expansion), or any of the thematic special power cards under any other framework?

Yeah, because planting once and harvesting three times really make thematic sense. As do variable time span between consecutive harvests.
In addition, to be able to plow fields and then plant, you have to pray someone else hasn't already done the same, because in such a case you can't do this on your own field, despite having unoccupied workers and needed resources to do so. It's the case with majority of actions you do in the game, so the entire game is bulit around the mechanics that go on the contrary to the theme.
Because it makes so much sense that I just "take" animals to my farm. I don't buy them or exchange my resources for them, they are just around waiting by the road to be taken by somebody. That's a rich village, isn't it. And the way they are breeding isn't suspicious at all
I could spend the whole day enumerating those situations. I'll conclude instead that the theme in Agricola is nice, just totally pasted on. I prefer it when the mechanics are abstracted to the point where they don't result in such illogical situations. See Tigris and Euphrates as an example of a perfect match of abstarcted mechanics and theme.

Though I'm fully aware much more people will agree with you about Agricola than with me about T&E, as oddly as it may appear to me.
 
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Lacombe
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Trees, meet forest. Forest, trees.

I don't think you understand what "pasted on" means.

While I essentially agree with you about T&E, it would be child's play to enumerate a laundry list of overabstractions as you have for Agricola.

Contrarily, despite the richness of metaphor that is T&E's current theme, it is easy to imagine another theme that works abouut as well, whereas this is all but impossible to do for Agricola.
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Florian Trabert
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Oh Mr. Feld, your games are SO good and PLEASEEEEEE continue to make them in a way that the innovative mechanisms are more important than the theme.
cool
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flott wrote:
Oh Mr. Feld, your games are SO good and PLEASEEEEEE continue to make them in a way that the innovative mechanisms are more important than the theme.
cool


thumbsupthumbsupthumbsupthumbsup
 
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Tom
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You so firmly believe that theme in Agricola is very well integrated with mechanics and can't be exchanged for another one, that it makes you think I don't understand the phrase. Whereas I don't agree that the theme suits the mechanics too well in the first place ("I have the needed workers, I have the needed resources but I can't use an action that I want on my own field"), so therefore I think it could easily be exchanged for a different one, e.g. a generic space theme in the mould of Eclipse/RFTG (gathering resources from planets, upgrading ships etc.). Let's agree to disagree then.
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Bruce Murphy
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solkan1 wrote:
You so firmly believe that theme in Agricola is very well integrated with mechanics and can't be exchanged for another one, that it makes you think I don't understand the phrase. Whereas I don't agree that the theme suits the mechanics too well in the first place ("I have the needed workers, I have the needed resources but I can't use an action that I want on my own field"), so therefore I think it could easily be exchanged for a different one, e.g. a generic space theme in the mould of Eclipse/RFTG (gathering resources from planets, upgrading ships etc.). Let's agree to disagree then.


And there's no actual cow in the box! And where's the dirt!!1!.

If you can't accept that there are necessarily abstractions in order to make it a playable and reasonable-scope game, we can't have even a reasonable discussion about this. The farming theme informs many of the relationships between things in the game.

That you bring up "but only one person can plow, that's ridiculous" as a point against theme is unreasonable. You can't imagine an actual situation where resource to plow fields are limited? Similarly for the other thing. This is a game with a mechanic of scarcity that happens to actually apply to farming very well, and which the game is built around.

At no point will you step in actual animal poo, but what does that matter?

B>
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solkan1 wrote:
But I can't plow my field because my neighbour is plowing his own...?

That's so easily explained thematically. The entire medieval farming community of Agricola is a commune. The central cards represent resources that all the farmers share. So yes, you can't plow your field because your neighbor is using the community oxen because they got there first. And by the same rational, the midwife won't be able to assist you in birthing babies because she's helping out one of the neighbours this season.
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Tom
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thepackrat wrote:
That you bring up "but only one person can plow, that's ridiculous" as a point against theme is unreasonable. You can't imagine an actual situation where resource to plow fields are limited? Similarly for the other thing. This is a game with a mechanic of scarcity that happens to actually apply to farming very well, and which the game is built around.

I'm constantly talking about situations in which I HAVE GOT the needed resourced but can't use them only because of the mechanical limitation derived from the concept of competition for actions. A scarcity of resources is perfectly logical, a scarcity of actions, when possessing needed resources and workers, is not.
 
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Bruce Murphy
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rahdo wrote:
solkan1 wrote:
But I can't plow my field because my neighbour is plowing his own...?

That's so easily explained thematically. The entire medieval farming community of Agricola is a commune.

I wonder whether you're trying to be sarcastic, but this is pretty close to the reality.
Quote:
The central cards represent resources that all the farmers share. So yes, you can't plow your field because your neighbor is using the community oxen because they got there first.


B>
 
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Bruce Murphy
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solkan1 wrote:
thepackrat wrote:
That you bring up "but only one person can plow, that's ridiculous" as a point against theme is unreasonable. You can't imagine an actual situation where resource to plow fields are limited? Similarly for the other thing. This is a game with a mechanic of scarcity that happens to actually apply to farming very well, and which the game is built around.

I'm constantly talking about situations in which I HAVE GOT the needed resourced but can't use them only because of the mechanical limitation derived from the concept of competition for actions. A scarcity of resources is perfectly logical, a scarcity of actions, when possessing needed resources and workers, is not.


Well, no, you don't have the necessary resources, you have the necessary consumables

B>
 
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Bryan Thunkd
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I have played, and loved, many games where the theme wasn't that great, or was just pasted on, or could have been anything else. However, if the mechanics of the game aren't great, or are just kind of there, or could be anything else, well that wouldn't be much of a game to play.

I think that people make too much of theme. Use your imagination a little and put yourself into the game, you don't need a theme to hold your hand every step of the way.
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