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Started by Clinton R. Nixon, May 31, 2001, 09:35:00 PM

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Ach.., what I meant was, that if it is true that a pro-bias toward a game can come about by virtue of simply choosing to play it, then the attempt (even unconsciously) to choose a game without consideration of its flavor must be of equal weight; i.e., the reviewer knowingly or unknowingly compensates the other way in an effort to assure him (or her) self that by not being passionate (for lack of better) they are therefore immune to emotional bias.

On the second, you are beginning to sound good to me.  I think that I better understand what you are forging.  I would call it 'The Pure Review' because you address the individual parts separate from the whole.  

I think that I was hasty earlier.  I am going to read your reviews right now.

Jeff Diamond



You know, I've read this thread and to me the differences being espoused have an obvious explaination.  When one is talking traditional role playing games like Vampire, or Rifts, or Shadowrun etc. There is no need to actually play the game.  I am with Brian 100% on this.  I can pick up Forge out of Chaos for example and evaluate it quite nicely on the basis of a couple good solid reads.  Why?  Because there is nothing really new or earth shattering there.  I may not have played FooC but I've spent thousands of hours on similiar games so a simple mathematical analysis to determine whether the mechanics work or are statistically broken is largely sufficient.

However, alot of newer games are radically different and offer radically different gaming concepts.  As these largely fall into the category of Narrativist games and those are the types of games Ron is reviewing he's likely absolutely correct to insist on playing them before reviewing them.  I mean I could offer comments or queries about Elfs say, but there no way I can even guess how those mechanics actually work in play enough to critique it just by reading it.  Oh I might be able to whip up some statistical analysis showing how unbalanced it is and how it makes no sense to buy Spunk (totally making that up here as an example) but such an analysis really is pretty meaningless for this sort of game except to make the point that game balance is not a priority.  

So I don't think there's any real disparity between what Brian is saying vs others.  Both are pretty much correct, within a certain specified frame of reference and pretty much wrong from outside that frame of reference.

In fact, IIRC Brian made a point early on acknowledging that the Forge had a different frame of reference from his usual one.