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#ActualSandman

Posted 29 May 2013 - 10:54 AM

It's a good question, and it's something that often bugs me in games as well. Randomness is often introduced as a sort of handwaving "simulating this is complicated, so I'll just use a random outcome" kind of way. Which isn't very good. Winning or losing games on the strength of pure luck is not really much fun. However, there are many games which rely heavily on random outcomes which can be very interesting games.

The trick is to allow players to manage their risk. To do this, they need to know up front what the risks are, and have the tools to manage them. You also need to take a statistical view of the overall gameplay. Don't hang too much on one big dice roll - lots of little dice rolls allow things to average out so pure luck is less of an issue, and good risk management over the course of a game wins out overall, rather than a random lucky roll.

The real answer to your question depends on the type of game you want to create. Personally, if it's just underdog victories/unexpected defeats you want to throw in, I'd be more inclined to add depth to your game rules so that those can occur due to good/poor strategy rather than blind luck. Randomness is no replacement for strategic depth. However, if you want players to be making strategic decisions based on risk factors - and expect them to delve into that side of things in enough detail to appreciate it - then go right ahead.


EDIT: Oh and one other thing: Play Diplomacy. It's effectively a non-random version of Risk - and it's awesome.

#2Sandman

Posted 29 May 2013 - 10:54 AM

It's a good question, and it's something that often bugs me in games as well. Randomness is often introduced as a sort of handwaving "simulating this is complicated, so I'll just use a random outcome" kind of way. Which isn't very good. Winning or losing games on the strength of pure luck is not really much fun. However, there are many games which rely heavily on random outcomes which can be very interesting games.

The trick is to allow players to manage their risk. To do this, they need to know up front what the risks are, and have the tools to manage them. You also need to take a statistical view of the overall gameplay. Don't hang too much on one big dice roll - lots of little dice rolls allow things to average out so pure luck is less of an issue, and good risk management over the course of a game wins out overall, rather than a random lucky roll.

The real answer to your question depends on the type of game you want to create. Personally, if it's just underdog victories/unexpected defeats you want to throw in, I'd be more inclined to add depth to your game rules so that those can occur due to good/poor strategy rather than blind luck. Randomness is no replacement for strategic depth. However, if you want players to be making strategic decisions based on risk factors - and expect them to delve into that side of things in enough detail to appreciate it - then go right ahead.


EDIT: Oh and one other thing: Play Diplomacy. It's effectively a non-random version of Risk - and it's awesome.

#1Sandman

Posted 29 May 2013 - 10:53 AM

It's a good question, and it's something that often bugs me in games as well. Randomness is often introduced as a sort of handwaving "simulating this is complicated, so I'll just use a random outcome" kind of way. Which isn't very good. Winning or losing games on the strength of pure luck is not really much fun. However, there are many games which rely heavily on random outcomes which can be very interesting games.

 

The trick is to allow players to manage their risk. To do this, they need to know up front what the risks are, and have the tools to manage them. You also need to take a statistical view of the overall gameplay. Don't hang too much on one big dice roll - lots of little dice rolls allow things to average out so pure luck is less of an issue, and good risk management over the course of a game wins out overall, rather than a random lucky roll.

 

The real answer to your question depends on the type of game you want to create. Personally, if it's just underdog victories/unexpected defeats you want to throw in, I'd be more inclined to add depth to your game rules so that those can occur due to good/poor strategy rather than blind luck. Randomness is no replacement for strategic depth. However, if you want players to be making strategic decisions based on risk factors - and expect them to delve into that side of things in enough detail to appreciate it - then go right ahead.


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