file What make VtES hard to learn

14 Oct 2012 04:03 #39060 by LunaSlave
Perhaps it's not exactly best for the long term wellbeing and popularity of the game, but some of us like it how it is!

In terms of initial complexity of what you need to know, maybe this is Magic: The Gathering:



and this is V:TES.



Once you get there, though, it makes for an amazing game.
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02 Nov 2012 06:34 #40257 by the1andonlime
I personally think that Vtes is hard to pick up on your own, but not so hard when you are taught with the right tools.

Years back, when I did Vtes demos during a local convention, I found it relatively easy to teach the game. What was difficult was sitting down to decide what goes into the demo decks and what doesn't. At the end of the day, we decided to leave out politics, diablerie and combat cards with weird timings. We did have a smattering of cards with more complex mechanics just to show that there's more to the game than the demo version.

We net 5+ new semi-regular players from that one event (although we lost some over the years), and no one complained about the game's complexity during the demo, so I think that was a good idea (that we unfortunately never did do again)


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02 Nov 2012 09:35 #40267 by drnlmza

We net 5+ new semi-regular players from that one event (although we lost some over the years), and no one complained about the game's complexity during the demo, so I think that was a good idea (that we unfortunately never did do again)

We've had reasonable success at getting people to try the game and play it a few times with various demos locally, but we do have a problem with getting players to stay in the game after a few months. The past couple years, we've had 3 or 4 new players start and play for a while, but at least 2 have dropped out within 6 months each year.

Partly it's complexity - once they start playing with the regular crowd, they do get hit by a whole bunch of new stuff quite quickly.

Partly I think it's competiveness. A new player will likely only have 1 decent deck, and, if the meta-game shifts, suddenly the new player is losing a lot more often and doesn't have the resources to react well. We try to mitigate this by maintaing a pool of cards new players can buy cheaply and so forth, but the players need to also put in the time working on deck ideas.

I keep feeling that this is something we could manage better, although I'm not quite sure how. Does anyone have any advice on methods for easing new players into the core player group?

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02 Nov 2012 11:05 #40273 by Boris The Blade
Allow proxies in your casual games? Lend new players your decks instead of cards? Show them Secret library to netdeck?

Deckbuilding is harshly punishing in VTES because a bad deck not only doesn't win, it jams. Losing is acceptable for a new player, sitting at the table doing nothing is not.
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02 Nov 2012 16:17 #40305 by ICL
With games with many sets, you run into a quick information overload issue. New players could play in some sort of sealed league for a while to be on a level playing field with veterans, then move on to constructed play. But, what I find is that groups that have played a long time don't have a lot of patience. "Been there, done that" leads to boredom when trying to dumb down deck construction or when playing with limited card pools. And, veteran players often forget what it was like to try to learn unfamiliar concepts to where the attitude of the group turns off prospective players.

One thing to consider is making a list of the 50 cards that are the most important to understand what they do in an effort to cut down on info overload. Then, an unknown card can be compared to a known card.

I also like the idea that some use who haven't played throughout the game's history of playing cards only from certain sets as that's how people like me were introduced to those sets. That, of course, runs into the problem of opponents not doing the same and having to learn what other cards do anyway, but it's some help.
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02 Nov 2012 16:57 #40308 by brandonsantacruz

One thing to consider is making a list of the 50 cards that are the most important to understand what they do in an effort to cut down on info overload. Then, an unknown card can be compared to a known card.


Interesting idea... brandonsantacruz.blogspot.com/2012/11/50-cards-every-vtes-player-should-know.html

Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one.
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