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Gathering of Engineers

Ludographic considerations from the Silicon Forest

Friday, September 09, 2005

Memories

This will be a brief posting for me, but I didn’t need to think about my least favorite gaming mechanism: Memory.  This goes back a long ways for me, as I avoided classes in school that required extensive amounts of memorization.  That’s why I leaned towards physics and math rather than biology and history – I would much rather learn a core set of principles (rules) and apply them to analyze and solve new, interesting problems.

Games that involve memorization as a core mechanism turn me off.  The canonical example would be the classic Memory game.  A more recent example is Dawn Under – I like my games to be relatively stateless.

Even when I play games with extensive hidden but knowable information, I waste no time tracking that information in my head other than in a very coarse manner.  Examples would include many Knizia games (Samurai, Tigris and Euphrates) and games where card counting can give a serious advantage.

There’s probably some Myers-Briggs personality attribute I have that leads to this aversion to memorization, but I don’t know what it is.  Intuitive?  Analytic?  Any shrinks out there that can help?

2 Comments:

  • At 11:17 AM, Blogger Dug said…

    I have to admit that while I really liked having "open book" engineering classes and have a horrible memory (not good for someone who has to memorize the names of people in a choir), I do like the occasional memory game. Sphinx is an excellent example of a very cool game that relies on you being able to track six different pieces with six different colors, and it definitely requires a certain type of mumbling for me.

     
  • At 12:11 PM, Blogger dave said…

    My one issue with memory as a game mechanism is that it is straight-up skill. So, playing a group memory game like Mamma Mia isn't too much unlike playing Ricochet Robot. Group dynamics don't really come into play as much as they do with other mechanisms, and I prefer playing multi-player games with strong interpersonal elements.

    I kinda like having memory as a minor part of a game, such as in Settlers Card Game or E&T. In a way, it's another type of resource I have to manage. What objects should I invest in memorizing? How much overall should I spend memorizing instead of focusing on strategic and tactical analysis?

    I will also note that losing all the time to Doug is what burnt me out on Mamma Mia. :-)

     

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