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Co-operative Games - how often should inexperienced players lose?

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questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Not much ... But I do understand "replayability".

nswoll wrote:
I don't think you play many co-op games...

Have you played Pandemic as per the OP?! Well Pandemic once you beat it has 0% replayability. There is no story, there are no multiple villains, there are no heroes, etc. It's just a bunch of cards that dictate which cities will become infested with one or more of the 4 viruses.

nswoll wrote:
Every co-op I've ever played has variability. Multiple player characters, multiple scenarios, etc.

For certain CO-OP games, perhaps this is true. But specifically the example in the OP with regards to "solving the puzzle" was mentioned for Pandemic. You assume that I was talking about ALL CO-OPs... When in my case, I was specifically talking about one game in particular (Pandemic).

Remember Pandemic is a EURO CO-OP. No story, no characters other than six or seven role cards which are usually needed to beat the game. Without one of those roles, the game is very challenging to BEAT. But with five (5) out of six (or seven)... The game can be beaten reasonably EARLY...

And that's the thing... IF you are going to WIN this game... It has to be EARLY before all the viruses start infecting too many cities and the level of contagion is too high...

And IMHO that is boring: win early (in a play-thru) or lose.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Ah I see...

lewpuls wrote:
Questccg: Sigh. By early on I didn't mean early in the individual play of the game, I mean early in their multiple plays of the game, when they're inexperienced, as opposed to when they're experienced. Sorry it wasn't clear.

Then my answer is 75% the players should LOSE. When it comes to multiple replays (not in any particular one play-thru). If it's too EASY, you beat it a couple times and the game is DONE. Winning every 25% (1 in 4 about) makes sure that the game has some intrinsic "replayability value".

Like you said, you may win 3 times in a row and then lose real badly a 4th time... That to me sound reasonable. The game needs to have some MEAT to it ... It can't be the SAME every time around. As some have suggested, vary the End-Game Boss or make levels where you beat Boss #1 allows you to choose Boss #2 next play-thru. And so forth. That's GOOD...

Either have CUSTOM "Characters" (for the Players) or like it was suggested have a POOL to choose from. Or do BOTH, some can choose from the POOL others can CREATE their own. Given a 15 minute startup time... Or something like that.

Cheers (and so sorry for the misunderstanding...)

nswoll
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Joined: 07/23/2010
questccg wrote:nswoll wrote:I

questccg wrote:
nswoll wrote:
I don't think you play many co-op games...

Have you played Pandemic as per the OP?! Well Pandemic once you beat it has 0% replayability. There is no story, there are no multiple villains, there are no heroes, etc. It's just a bunch of cards that dictate which cities will become infested with one or more of the 4 viruses.

nswoll wrote:
Every co-op I've ever played has variability. Multiple player characters, multiple scenarios, etc.

For certain CO-OP games, perhaps this is true. But specifically the example in the OP with regards to "solving the puzzle" was mentioned for Pandemic. You assume that I was talking about ALL CO-OPs... When in my case, I was specifically talking about one game in particular (Pandemic).

Remember Pandemic is a EURO CO-OP. No story, no characters other than six or seven role cards which are usually needed to beat the game. Without one of those roles, the game is very challenging to BEAT. But with five (5) out of six (or seven)... The game can be beaten reasonably EARLY...

And that's the thing... IF you are going to WIN this game... It has to be EARLY before all the viruses start infecting too many cities and the level of contagion is too high...

And IMHO that is boring: win early (in a play-thru) or lose.

I think you're still overstating it, but I understand. I agree that Pandemic has lower replay value - but there are at least 3 expansions. And you still can get value from trying to win with different combinations of characters (medic, dispatcher, etc) and different player counts (we won with 4 now can we beat the game with only 3 players?), Plus you can seed 4 or 5 epidemics.

So that's 3 parameters with 3/5/2 different options for each parameter which means you'll have close to 100 different puzzles - not 1.

Now, I think pandemic is boring also, but I want to be fair to the design. There is plenty of replayability included.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
People like things for different reasons, I guess.

nswoll wrote:
I think you're still overstating it, but I understand. I agree that Pandemic has lower replay value - but there are at least 3 expansions. And you still can get value from trying to win with different combinations of characters (medic, dispatcher, etc) and different player counts (we won with 4 now can we beat the game with only 3 players?), Plus you can seed 4 or 5 epidemics.

The game has HIGH "replayability" ... Until it is beaten. And once you realize that you MUST beat the game "early"... The puzzle is then solved.

nswoll wrote:
Now, I think pandemic is boring also, but I want to be fair to the design. There is plenty of replayability included.

I don't think the game is "boring". I actually think it is VERY FUN ... as you watch the world start to expand and contagion go out of control. It can be very HARD to WIN... Especially LATER ON in a game. I actually WONDER IF it can be won later in the game!?

But it's a bit of a RUSH to try to react to every single outbreak card that gets drawn. And you've got to be "on-it" soon otherwise the contagion will spread to connecting cities. And your chances to WIN drops to nil.

Like Dr. Lew (@lewpuls) stated, one of his friends figured out the Puzzle. And now it's like a "science" of what you need to do to WIN the game. That's not the kind of games that I replay IMHO. Once beaten, there is to me very little replayability.

But fair to your point, you can vary the amount of players, how the game is started (blank or with some outbreaks), change the abilities for the players, etc. And I guess this could be FUN for some people. However, I am not one of them.

Waiting to WIN is NOT in Pandemic's "vocabulary". You've got to be under the gun ASAP and start curing outbreaks ASAP if you want to win...

And just as an aside, Pandemic is ONE of the games sold at "Toys R' Us" alongside with Monopoly, Clue, Snakes and Ladders, Sorry! and other roll & move games. So it must be popular if these stores "sell the game".

It's a bit funny, you find it "boring", I find it "boring once you beat it"... How the heck does it have such a following!?!? Guess people like things for different reasons. Hmmm...

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