Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Digital Versions

At GenCon, this year, one of the things Asmodee had in the booth was an area for the digital version of Splendor. At the time, it was available on iOS.  Now it's also on Android and Steam.

I have it on my Kindle Fire, and the app is solid. The art and gameplay are exactly like the tabletop game.  In fact, it's only missing two things: that wonderful tactility of the physical game and online multiplayer.

I also have Ticket To Ride, Summoner Wars, Catan, Carcassone, and several other games on my Fire. And they're all good implementations of the various games. But I'm one of those guys who likes bits. For me, part of the joy of Splendor is stacking and restacking my chips.

On the other hand, playing Catan without having to set up the board is nice.  Finishing Ticket to Ride and not having to re-score to make things didn't get missed during the game is awesome. Not having to count and add for Longest Route is very nice.

And then there's the player factor:

I love, for example, Lords of Xidit.  It's an often-overlooked gem. A great little game. But too many folks in my local group aren't fans, so I don't get to break it out very often.

But I can (and do) play it on, where it's not hard to find enthusiasts. I've (so far) only played it against some friends from Plus.  Folks I can't play in person with (unless they move to Seattle).

I don't buy games for the art.  I don't buy them for the rules. I buy them for the social interaction. Gaming is the only social interaction I actively seek out.

So I'll buy digital versions. I'll use them as personal tutorials. But - for me, at least - they fall far short of the actual physical games.

This week at Game Night, I'm bringing Mysterium.  It's practically Halloween, and I can't think of a more appropriate game to play.

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