Skip to Content

Decisions Do's and Don'ts

Matthew Rodgers post made me think of Matt Leacock's video about what went into creating Pandemic. If you have 50 minutes its definitely worth a watch. For those that don't have the time, reproduced here are the =Decision= do's and don'ts.

Each entry has a little cryptic entry followed by a game as an example.

Decisions TODO

  • Resource Trades When to trade what to whom? Think Catan.
  • Risk vs Reward Safe vs danger to get small or larger reward. Like in Risk maybe?
  • Choice of Actions Want to do many things but cannot do them all. Agricola.
  • Short Term vs Long Term Nice now or better later? I struck a blank. Can anyone think of a game with this in?
  • Social information Dishonesty vs honesty. This one seems a bit meta-gamey to me but still valid. Diplomacy.
  • Dilemmas Give up one of multiple things you really want. Battlestar Galactica.
  • Emotional Decisions I add this here since I rather enjoy having some players battle with taking what is might be a good move, mechanically speaking, but which is has some negative emotional connotation. e.g. leaving a buddy behind in favor of better resources. Though this doesn't always work because some people just have no feelings. Game suggestion anyone?

Each entry has a little cryptic entry followed by how to fix it if you find it in your game.

Decisions DO NOT DO

  • Meaningless Decisions "False Distinctions". This is a choice of two things that are actually the same. These should be removed.
  • Obvious Decisions "Strict Domination". There is only one "right" answer or "best" strategy. These decisions should be automated.
  • Blind Decisions There is no information to make a decision. These decisions should be randomized instead. There are probably the hardest to identify as some seemingly blind decisions actually have valid strategies available through the metagame e.g. rock/paper/scissors

Do you have any decision do's and don'ts to share?

Until next time



Long Term vs. Short Term

A buddy and I brainstormed for a bit, and we came up with Colisseum (do you go for a series of small but perfect shows or do you dial it in for a couple of turnes try for a really big one in round 3?) and The Game of Life, where you have to make a choice between going to college or getting a head start by getting into the workforce directly.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Syndicate content

blog | by Dr. Radut