Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

Re: [Icehouse] IGDC Winter 2008 is ready for announcement tomorrow!

  • From"Jorge Arroyo" <trozo@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • DateThu, 8 Nov 2007 12:17:16 +0100
One last question: If a game needs to be played by two sides, each with one color, but can be played with just 1 set by using 2 colors each, would it be allowed in the competition? I'd say it should be because it's not an optimal way of playing and can be confusing for beginners... what do you think?



On 11/6/07, David Artman <david@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
We're basically in agreement; just fiddling with words now a bit (and
one important correction!).

> From: kerry_and_ryan@xxxxxxx
> But how set-in-stone are the requirements for any game.

That is definitely a "plastic" thing--some games set the number of
players in stone (Martian Mud Wrestling), some are scalable (Martian
Chess), and some have ideal numbers but playable variations (Icehouse).

So the only games I'd reject are those which are mechanically
indistinguishable, identical-in-play games when converted to 1HOUSE; but
conversely, if they can scale up well (ex: Icecaster, Martian Chess)
then I say so much the better for sales promotion!

Hence the reason I say that requiring five transparent stacks qualifies,
because it's not "identical in play" to use an opaque stack instead of a
transparent--presuming, of course, that nesting occurs in the game; if
the pieces never nest, they don't really need to be transparent, and so
one would have to require at least six stacks to qualify.

> Summary, I would be liberal and let pretty much ANY game
> that could reasonably be played with the requisite number
> of Treehouse sets into the competition.

I think that's a bit vague. "Reasonably be played" means what, exactly?
It's reasonable to play Zendo with two matching TH sets, it just limits
the number of koans that can be left assembled. Would Zendo qualify for
2HOUSE? I suppose... but it's definitely hamstringing the game to wedge
it into the 2HOUSE model (refer to Ikkozendo for how 1HOUSE Zendo must
be played--it's much tougher on the Students, when they have few koans).

> If a game that is REALLY fun with four players and four
> Treehouse sets is entered in the 2HOUSE competition,
> its ranking will likely suffer AND disqualify the game
> from being entered into future competitions.

Correction: Only First Place winners are precluded from re-submission in
later competitions. The "check and balance" against spamming submissions
are (a) design restrictions and (b) eventual judge weariness of seeing
the game again, which inevitably costs the game in rankings.

> Is 2HOUSE Icecaster "the same game" as 4HOUSE Icecaster?
> I'd say yes, unless there are MAJOR changes other than
> the number of Treehouse sets required.

Well, in play, it would be VERY different--far from "identical in
play"--because of alliance forming and backstabbing, neither of which is
possible in the two-player game. Even if the rule text is written such
that it needs no changes--making it "formally" the same game--its actual
play would change so much that it's not "finally" the same game at all.

Hmmm... I really think I'm going to push hard for a thematic
restriction, whenever we go with restrictions again (prolly NOT in
Summer 2008, to accommodate those folks who voted "no" to restrictions
this time around). It's pretty much unequivocal if a game uses/mentions
two of four evocative terms (ex: Stone, Waterfall, Orbit, Monkey); and
it places far more of the "control" in the judges hands: often in such
themed contests (indie RPGs, lately), judges are explicitly advised to
consider how well the chosen themes are evoked. Judges are expected to
penalize a game which just tacks a theme term onto itself (ex: changing
Wormholes to "Orbitals" doesn't evoke "Orbit" at all, as the gameplay
has nothing to do with things orbiting or orbitable).

Fun conversation... hopefully it's of some use to others;

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