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SUSD reviews you don't agree with


#161

Yeah I enjoyed Deus too. It didn’t blow me away, but it felt in some respects like a more interesting Kingdom Builder type game. My only complaint was that the box art and name were way to dramatic for the paltry theme inside. With dramatic looking greek gods and a name like Deus, I want it to be less light Euro meeple placement, more clash of the titans epic something or other.


#162

Keyflower > Suburbia. Worst hexagonal tile-laying game fest ever.

There are others that fall into the “SUSD thought is was hilarious! or epic! despite glaring mechanical flaws”, but everyone on the internet knows about those.


#163

Too many to list, but I still enjoy the videos for the entertainment value.


#164

I love playing Takenoko with my family and felt quite sad when they hated it so much. I thought the tone of the review was uncharacteristically sniffy too.

Apart from that I have always found the site very reliable, and I can tell whether I will enjoy a game based on the review. I did buy K2 (the other game mentioned a lot in this thread) based on SU&SD recommendation, and I liked it.


#165

Takenoko is wonderful, and the hidden-goals are no different from Ticket to Ride (which they’ve never seemed sniffy about)… Hell, how is it that different from Dead of Winter? Would it really be that difficult to play with an open hand, in that case? Kinda lame criticism.


#166

I suspect I disagree with SUSD’s dislike of Yedo. It’s a case where the oversized cards and overstuffed board overcome the basic worker placement rules.


#167
I suspect I disagree with SUSD's dislike of Yedo. It's a case where the oversized cards and overstuffed board overcome the basic worker placement rules.

I was just looking into this–when you point to the SUSD’s anti-recommendation, do you mean podcast #13? Seems like their big gripe was the potential for random game events to completely destroy plans? I didn’t get thatcomponents were at issue.

Though I own it, I don’t know Yedo. I’ve only ever set up a brief learning game (which I never finished learning), and have been curious about bringing it out to a game night. Unfortunately, my group has already played it sometime in the past, and I think had similar misgivings–they like their Euros hard and highly predictable.

I don’t mind a bit of crazy stuff happening, even if it crimps my game (a la Merchants and Marauders), but for a game you have to invest a lot of thought and time into, I can see it being frustrating.
@KeithBlock, sounds like you’ve enjoyed it?


#168

For a while I’ve suspected Funemployed after being disappointed once I actually bought it and flipped through the cards and read the rules. Then I watched a Let’s Play of people who purport to enjoy the game. Boy did that confirm my suspicions.


#169
For a while I've suspected Funemployed after being disappointed once I actually bought it and flipped through the cards and read the rules. Then I watched a Let's Play of people who purport to enjoy the game. Boy did that confirm my suspicions.

The game seemed really boring to me! But it does fit into my broadly defined category of “games that are meant to be funny and nothing else” that I abhor. :slight_smile:


#170

Yeah, that Funemployed LP today was a bit … yeah. Nothing to do with the guests, but I was left very much with the feeling of “…And?”

Not to mention that I’m not particularly fond of a game that requires a specific skill set. And my acid test for games is 1) Would it be easy for me to feel comfortable playing this with a group of strangers? and 2) Would it be easy to make a single stranger feel comfortable playing this? Maaaybe…

After the raving about it, it seems extremely underwhelming - and there are much, much better options.

In other words - “Wait a second, this game is crap! I just have awesome friends!”


#171
Yeah, that Funemployed LP today was a bit ... yeah. Nothing to do with the guests, but I was left very much with the feeling of "...And?"

Not to mention that I’m not particularly fond of a game that requires a specific skill set. And my acid test for games is 1) Would it be easy for me to feel comfortable playing this with a group of strangers? and 2) Would it be easy to make a single stranger feel comfortable playing this? Maaaybe…

After the raving about it, it seems extremely underwhelming - and there are much, much better options.

In other words - “Wait a second, this game is crap! I just have awesome friends!”

In their review of Monikers they actually described why I hate Funemployed. The phrase used was “a game you have to inject the fun into”. That is exactly what this game is. If you have a theatre group and improve comedy club as friends then I’m sure the game is a blast, but if you have just any group of everyday players then chances are its going to fall flat. I think that is the “specific skill” you’re referring to if I’m not mistaken. The need to be able to improvise comedic material in order to make the game fun, rather than it being fun on its own.


#172

Yeah, that was the one - I mean, I have friends who are excellent at improv and I would havea blast playing it with them, but then again I have a blast hanging out with them anyway. Why would I need to add this game?


#173

I don’t mind games requiring a skillset, and I don’t mind games that could be accurately redefined as “______ activities.” I love rules, designs, and systems … but mostly I like learning and storytelling. I own way more RPGs than I’ll ever play. But I read them.

I love comedy. Not as in listening, because who doesn’t. As in I loved Talking Funny immensely (though Ricky Gervais was wildly out of place in several ways). I like Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee and Seinfeld even though I’ve never quite liked Jerry Seinfeld himself exactly … there’s a current of meta-humor and dissection, and precision of craft that runs though these things as well as the explicit shop-talk of Comedians in Cars that gets my crazy excited. Improv games tap into this for me. It’s not that I’m good at improv or that I like improving. I sort of do, but that’s not why I like improv games–it’s why I watch improv happening. But I also like learning about improv and like learning about comedy. I like telling the story and learning how it is told and how to tell it better. As a result, sure every now and then I put some of this into practice and get a good laugh and that high that bouncing off of someone who plays along can give you. But that’s not why I like this stuff. It’s not to get better, it’s simply to consume the learning itself.

And as glorified classroom-style exercises or glorified “_______ activities?” These sorts of games completely work and that’s just fine with me as a designer and as a player.

But some of them work better than others. Some of them are more coherent than others. Some of them are better designs or better “______ activities”–usually both at once for obvious reasons. Funemployed … doesn’t get there for me. It has some very specific problems quite apart from being one of those games.

Monikers does pull this off, I think, though I feel no need to buy the set.


#174

P.S. I’m always a little wary of the “why not just hang out” criticism. While in a theoretical sense my inclination is to agree, and I’m on record saying “about as fun as just hanging out with the same people” is one of the sterner critiques that can be leveled at a game … when I think more carefully about it, I don’t know how useful that idea is in practice. Hanging out is often quite fun. But often people want something to glue a hangout together otherwise they’ll just … stop. That just happens. Sometimes you’re ok just chatting randomly, sometimes you want to do A Thing. And just because something isn’t inherently more fun than doing any old thing with a group of people doesn’t mean it carries no added value–either as a social glue or as something interesting or as something intellectually stimulating, or as something that just feels different.

Some groups click so well nothing can ever be more fun than just hanging out. So why play games with them? Why watch movies with them? Well if you like movies and you like games enough that you’re going to consume those things either way … why not do it in the most fun environment you can?

I guess, fundamentally, I have never in practice experienced the arithmetic properties of fun that my theoretical agreement with the “why not just hang out” rhetoric implies.


#175
just because something isn't inherently more fun than doing any old thing with a group of people doesn't mean it carries no added value

True, but that’s still a pretty damning criticism of a game. “Equally fun as any other old thing you can think of doing.”


#176

Ladies and Gentleman has to be the biggest disappointment to me. It’s hard for me to even describe it as a game. I really wanted to love this. I even defended it a few times but on retrospect, there are no interesting choices to be made as the men at all and very few as the women. Maybe it’s good as social commentary or to lead to a bit to lite roleplaying, but it’s pretty uninteresting as a game.


#177
Ladies and Gentleman has to be the biggest disappointment to me. It's hard for me to even describe it as a game. I really wanted to love this. I even defended it a few times but on retrospect, there are no interesting choices to be made as the men at all and very few as the women. Maybe it's good as social commentary or to lead to a bit to lite roleplaying, but it's pretty uninteresting as a game.

Ok, but did you all talk in over-the-top Victorian accents? They left that one out of the rulebook, but it’s critical.


#178
Ladies and Gentleman has to be the biggest disappointment to me. It's hard for me to even describe it as a game.

I agree - it was so nicely presented, and we got to fool around and act sexist (as either sex!). I thought it was going to be a lot of fun, and then we played and I thought “is that it?”. Yes, didnt really seem to be a lot of interesting choices to make.

I would have been very disappointed to have actually bought this.


#179
just because something isn't inherently more fun than doing any old thing with a group of people doesn't mean it carries no added value

True, but that’s still a pretty damning criticism of a game. “Equally fun as any other old thing you can think of doing.”

There are a lot of values other than “fun” is my point. It is not an inherently damning criticism to say that something is just as fun as hanging out with an optimally fun group of people. Maximizing fun is not the only reason to play games with people and fun is not an arithmetic quantity that is at a consistent level for a given game or a given group. Fun is unstable–there are much more interesting ways to talk about a game though fun is a perfectly fine way to talk about a specific play session.


#180

For a game called FUNemployed I’d say it’s an inherently damning criticism - I wasn’t talking in general terms.