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Story Driven Board Games

Posted by Kyro Sk On 2011-07-30 0 comments

Came across a really interesting thread on the use of story in board games (the linked thread).  Since I know a ton of us play games quite frequently I figured I'd put it to the people for a discussion here.

Q: Does immerssive story in boardgames add or detract from the experience?
JPM: I like the amount of story in Betrayal at House on the Hill and Arkham Horror.  I enjoy reading the flavor text on the cards with a little verve to spruce up the game play.

Q: Does a game feel lacking if the theme doesn't have any flavor text?
JPM: hmm.. it always feel to me like Settlers of Catan is a little light on content, being a pure game mechanic style game.  That said, it's an amazing concept mechanic style game that broke us out of the Parker Brothers/Monopoly/Pay Day/Risk mold.  But it seems like it's not required.

There is this game called Tales of the Arabian Nights which I've played once, and it was almost pure narrative mixed in with some pretty basic adventure game elements.  I quite enjoyed it and would like to play it some more but it was quite long.

There are also games like Dominion which allude to having story elements but really contain none and I love that game too.  What do people prefer?  Do people get annoyed by the presence of heavy story elements in what would normally be a "board" game?

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