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Card game that could beat go and chess

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CCGer
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Joined: 07/28/2011

Hi guys, I am new here. As you can guess by my user name, I am a fan of CCGs. The main point of this discussion is that, is it possible to build a CCG that is more complex than go and chess.

When I talk about CCGs, most people will think of a game which is heavy on deck buiding but doesn't require much skills to play. So, I thought of designing a CCG that can match the difficulty of chess and go.

Chess and go is some of the most "brainy" strategy game out there. Can you think of any CCG that could compare with it? I thought of VS System, but then people said that it relied a lot on the type of deck, as in deck A beats deck B even though both decks are well made.( I don't really like meta gaming)

I will need some of your opinions on this. I hope it can become a great discussion.
Thanks for the help

simons
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Joined: 12/28/2008
The most strategic CCG I've

The most strategic CCG I've ever played is NetRunner, although honestly, I think you'll have a really hard time coming even close to Go or Chess. Keep in mind that both of those games involve 0, and are perfect information, and are still so complex that they overwhelm computers. Like, there are literally 100+ page books written on the strategy of both (and remember, that's 100 pages on a game that is essentially about putting stones on a grid or moving a couple pieces around a board).

I think that by the fact that, a) your strategy depends a lot on what you drew, and what you might be able to draw (and this risk management is not anything like the kind of strategy you get in Go), b) bluffing and keeping cards secret (which is really not strategy the way Go is), c) in my experience, 7 or 8 times out of 10, the player who put the most time and money into their deck seems to win (whereas 10 times out of 10, the best Go player wins).

And honestly, I think by the fact that you introduce so many random elements into the game, you are inevitably never going to get strategy like in Chess or Go (where the best player really does almost always win).

Anyways, that my 2 cents. I would love to see a game that could prove me wrong.

Simon

CCGer
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Joined: 07/28/2011
Why do you don't consider

Why do you don't consider bluffing a strategy? And as for spending time on the decks, chess and go players also spend lots of time in the game (although less money is involve).
Well, I think the luck part of a CCG can also be a skill. It is a skill to face the unkown. In chess and go, both games have perfect information, so no (or less) unknowns, can I see that they lack the ability to face the unknown?
And speaking of perfect information, what if in a CCG both players must reveal the cards in their hands. That will make the game have more information but still have some unknowns.

suf
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Joined: 07/26/2010
It's a challenge!

I like the challenge of trying to come up with a CCG to beat Chess and Go in complexity.

I don't want to sound skeptical, but this seems like a very difficult task. I'm just thinking it would be very hard to even come up with a way of comparing them. Chess and Go are very deep games with very very simple rules. All games I know to go that deep require players to have all information. Adding a drop of randomness usually helps a game, and also dramatically cuts from the deepness of it.

Rule complexity is another thing. If you think of Go, there's only one type of piece and there are a few placement rules. For Chess there are 6 types of pieces and each moves in a different way, so a bit more rules. I can't imagine a CCG with 1 to 6 different cards. If you end up with hundreds of different cards then you've got rule complexity, not necessary deepness. You'd easily overwhelm players with information. It would be a race about who can best figure out how to map all cards in their brain instead of who can think more moves ahead.

How about the matrix? Go and Chess have few piece types. They get their complexity and variety via their 2D board. You think you can have some way of replacing this with CCG elements?

DogBoy
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Joined: 12/15/2009
suf wrote: I don't want to

suf wrote:

I don't want to sound skeptical, but this seems like a very difficult task. I'm just thinking it would be very hard to even come up with a way of comparing them. Chess and Go are very deep games with very very simple rules. All games I know to go that deep require players to have all information. Adding a drop of randomness usually helps a game, and also dramatically cuts from the deepness of it.

Rule complexity is another thing. If you think of Go, there's only one type of piece and there are a few placement rules. For Chess there are 6 types of pieces and each moves in a different way, so a bit more rules. I can't imagine a CCG with 1 to 6 different cards. If you end up with hundreds of different cards then you've got rule complexity, not necessary deepness. You'd easily overwhelm players with information. It would be a race about who can best figure out how to map all cards in their brain instead of who can think more moves ahead.

I agree with pretty much everything quoted above.

CCGs usually depend on two factors which make them completely unlike games such as Chess and Go. These factors are

1. Randomness
2. Many uniquely different cards

Randomness dramatically changes the strategic character of a game, because evaluating the combined effects of many probabilistic outcomes is a different sort of skill than planning optimal strategies in perfect-information games.

Having many different uniquely cards introduces what suf calls rule complexity, because different card effects are like having different rules for each card. I'd be inclined to describe Chess and Go as games with simple rules which require complex strategic thought.

How could you overcome this problem?

First, you'd have to make the game non-random. That's probably not too hard: design a CCG where you stack your deck at the beginning of the game and never shuffle it.

Next, remove complexity from the cardset. That's going to be harder, but not impossible. For instance, you could just have a number between 1 and 1000 on each card. Then you have 1000 cards available and nobody has to remember which cards exist or what they can do.

I suggest that this game should be played with a deck of 52 ordinary playing cards. Each player should start with a deck of 20 cards, containing any number of copies of any card, stacked in any order they like (so you can have 20 Aces of Spades if you want). Then, some clever and deep rules for how to play and how to win. No look-up tables to say that cards do special things: a 5 of Spades should do the same thing as a 4 of Spades, except with a 5 instead of a 4.

tomi71
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Just happened to see this

Just happened to see this interesting article and thought about my experience.

I´ve have had a very chess-like feeling when I have played Evolution Earth: Cataclysm and especially with advanced rules (Blue Pearl rules which eliminates luck completely). I am one of the designers of that game but I don´t still feel biased since I greatly love chess and maybe that effected the game´s strategy a bit and gave it that feeling (or at least it did it for me).

This game is a deck-building game and with advanced rules player has a total control of the deck he is playing. He decices the card order etc. So there is no randomness at all and while it might sound difficult to know how the cards should be placed every round under the deck; you actually learn it quite quickly.

It is a free print and play. This october this game will be published with new updated rules and graphics in Essen. If you are interested you can try it for free (risk free also except for ink and paper). All instructions and pn´p stuff is found here:

http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/63216/evolution-earth-cataclysm

edit: the link was wrong, now it is correct

by the way: here is the to-be-published version:

http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/101718/terra-evolution

Yamahako
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Joined: 12/01/2010
DogBoy wrote:suf wrote: I

DogBoy wrote:
suf wrote:

I don't want to sound skeptical, but this seems like a very difficult task. I'm just thinking it would be very hard to even come up with a way of comparing them. Chess and Go are very deep games with very very simple rules. All games I know to go that deep require players to have all information. Adding a drop of randomness usually helps a game, and also dramatically cuts from the deepness of it.

Rule complexity is another thing. If you think of Go, there's only one type of piece and there are a few placement rules. For Chess there are 6 types of pieces and each moves in a different way, so a bit more rules. I can't imagine a CCG with 1 to 6 different cards. If you end up with hundreds of different cards then you've got rule complexity, not necessary deepness. You'd easily overwhelm players with information. It would be a race about who can best figure out how to map all cards in their brain instead of who can think more moves ahead.

I agree with pretty much everything quoted above.

CCGs usually depend on two factors which make them completely unlike games such as Chess and Go. These factors are

1. Randomness
2. Many uniquely different cards

Randomness dramatically changes the strategic character of a game, because evaluating the combined effects of many probabilistic outcomes is a different sort of skill than planning optimal strategies in perfect-information games.

Having many different uniquely cards introduces what suf calls rule complexity, because different card effects are like having different rules for each card. I'd be inclined to describe Chess and Go as games with simple rules which require complex strategic thought.

How could you overcome this problem?

First, you'd have to make the game non-random. That's probably not too hard: design a CCG where you stack your deck at the beginning of the game and never shuffle it.

Next, remove complexity from the cardset. That's going to be harder, but not impossible. For instance, you could just have a number between 1 and 1000 on each card. Then you have 1000 cards available and nobody has to remember which cards exist or what they can do.

I suggest that this game should be played with a deck of 52 ordinary playing cards. Each player should start with a deck of 20 cards, containing any number of copies of any card, stacked in any order they like (so you can have 20 Aces of Spades if you want). Then, some clever and deep rules for how to play and how to win. No look-up tables to say that cards do special things: a 5 of Spades should do the same thing as a 4 of Spades, except with a 5 instead of a 4.

I like this idea, and also agree with this list of challenges. However, you'll also need board position and tactical movement to address a lot of the strategy.

My game, Orbit (http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/88247/orbit-rocket-race-5000) does not come close - however I think it has a lot of the elements. It has been "commercialized" to make it more "fun", but there is a far more strategic version.

The elements of randomness are that cards are played differently, but aren't more or less powerful. There is a board, which causes some strategic positioning. However it's missing the total information of your opponent. Playing hands up might work - (the Satellite card would not exist in this version) and maybe with a slightly different goal. Perhaps to get a match 4? That would make it feel more like "check mating" your opponent. I'd probably remove the playing restriction as well (not limit it to playing in the closest ring).

If anyone is interested in testing I could probably get a mock-up of rules and a PDF that would contain all of the cards in short order. This game would be significantly different from Orbit...

simons
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CCGer wrote:Why do you don't

CCGer wrote:
Why do you don't consider bluffing a strategy? ...
Well, I think the luck part of a CCG can also be a skill. It is a skill to face the unkown.

In a way, I agree with you, they are skills, and can make for an interesting game. But they are not the same as a game like go or chess.

Let me try to explain the difference:

In go, let's say you place a piece in my territory. I am not sure if you will be able to make a foot-hold in my territory, or if I will be able to wipe you out. If I was a better player than I currently am, I would be able to map out in my head every potential exchange of pieces ("I go here, then you go here, then I respond by going here..."), and see if I could block you from taking that territory. The only unknowns come from the inability of my mind to see that far in the future. Thus, if I devote a year of my life to playing it better, I will get better at it.

On the other hand, consider a game like Magic. Because I don't really know what you have in your hand, or what either of us are going to draw, I have no way of predicting what you will do in 3 turns. Because of that, I can't look 8 moves ahead and no how to put you in check-mate. And, I'm pretty sure that because of this, there is more of a limit to how long it is until I become the best that can ever be.

Simon

whoshim
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Joined: 05/02/2011
Decipher's Star Wars CCG was

Decipher's Star Wars CCG was really good. The matchups took a while, and most of the action was 'on the board' so to speak, with positioning mattering a lot. Also, resources had to be balanced, and card counting was helpful. It was quite the game of skill.

CCGer
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Joined: 07/28/2011
advantage of CCG

Is there any advantage in terms of skills in a CCG if compared to chess and go?
One thing I can think of is problem solving. While I acknowledge that chess and go are also problem solving games, but the randomness in CCG actually gives more problems to the player.
In chess and go, if a weak player plays against the verry much stronger player, it 'll be almost no problam at all for the stronger player to solve (or perhaps the problem will be too easy)
In CCGs, there are lots of unknowns to deal with even though the skill level between the players is far apart.
For example in Yugioh there is the trap card mechanics.

All in all, are there any skills that a CCG player will possess but not a chess or go player?

Lopaki
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Joined: 06/01/2011
the CCG player knows more

the CCG player knows more about combo playing.
He has to prepare a strategy, use it and defend it from be broken by the enemy.
This is used in chess too, but with much less preparation than in a CCG where you have to decide on which cards you want to use in your deck.

tomi71
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Joined: 07/28/2008
Hello again! Just found this

Hello again! Just found this kind of game, which is a mixture of Dominion and Chess. Probably worth a look: http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/97512/for-the-crown

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