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Ointagru

Poll: immersion vs rules

Poll: immersion vs rules  

123 members have voted

  1. 1. What is more important  to you in AoS: immersion (being able to tell compelling stories) or rules (having fun with game mechanics)?

    • I care only about immersion.
      3
    • I care more about immersion then about rules.
      33
    • Immersion and rules are equally important to me.
      43
    • I care more about rules then about immersion.
      36
    • I care only about rules.
      8


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Disclaimer: the poll is not about the new GW terrain sets. Indeed, one could find the narrative aspect important, yet think that new terrain doesn’t impact it negatively. Conversely, one that care only about rules could be against the way the new terrain is pushed on players.

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I like both. I obviously want good rules that make sense and perform a good game system, but I get extremely excited about the in world illusion GW sets up with their panoramic dynamic scenes in battletomes and codexes. When an army is thematic, fully painted, plays like the lore, looks great on the table, and "feels" like you're in it, in the story, with your guys and its all coming together it's great. This simulation argument people are throwing out is literally irrelevant. 

Simulation does not equal to immersion, AT ALL. World of Warcraft is by no means an accurate depiction of war, but its extremely immersive. The music, the art direction, the tone, the zones, the landscape, the races and classes all works for a cohesive whole and you FEEL like you're in Azeroth. 

Age of Sigmar is becoming the same way. You see a Stormhost of Stormcast Eternals beautifully painted and in action and with the right set up it FEELS like the mighty and undying soldiers of Sigmar standing as a righteous Bulwark against Chaos and Evil...but you're really just rolling some dice. Everything chain combos together to make a cohesive whole and full picture, the paint scheme, models, table top terrain layout, who you are fighting, army list and composition, and any narrative elements. The realm rules as well as the endless spells, terrain features. Mystical ancient ruins thrumming with arcane power (+1 to cast), dreadfully haunted tombs that fill you with fright (-1 bravery), and everything. Layers upon layers stack up to make a fantasy world where fantastic battles are fought. Literally 0 to do with a simulation or simulating a war. It's more like an RPG world building and you are roleplaying as the general and leader of your chosen army. 

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I think what I've taken away from all of this topic over the past couple months is the word "immersion" means many things to many people.  

There are guys on dakka that will argue forever that immersion means the game plays out like it would in a movie or a story.  There are guys here saying immersion just means that the game feels like AOS.  There are guys that say immersion means the game should play out like a battle would play out.

Are any of them wrong?  Probably not.  But because "immersion" means many things to many people you'll get different answers and different types of responses.

The more accurate question may be "what type of immersion are you looking for".  

For my money, and for my experience, the immersion most AOS players seem to be after is the whole warcraft explanation above.  Simulation, feeling like a movie or the novel, etc... are not what most people seem to care about.   "That doesn't make sense" is not something we care about.  

A giant khorne altar on every table doesn't make sense, but it has the WoW/magic the gathering immersion feel which is what most games today are going after and is good enough for me.

Edited by Dead Scribe

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36 minutes ago, Dead Scribe said:

I think what I've taken away from all of this topic over the past couple months is the word "immersion" means many things to many people.  

There are guys on dakka that will argue forever that immersion means the game plays out like it would in a movie or a story.  There are guys here saying immersion just means that the game feels like AOS.  There are guys that say immersion means the game should play out like a battle would play out.

Are any of them wrong?  Probably not.  But because "immersion" means many things to many people you'll get different answers and different types of responses.

The more accurate question may be "what type of immersion are you looking for".  

For my money, and for my experience, the immersion most AOS players seem to be after is the whole warcraft explanation above.  Simulation, feeling like a movie or the novel, etc... are not what most people seem to care about.   "That doesn't make sense" is not something we care about.  

A giant khorne altar on every table doesn't make sense, but it has the WoW/magic the gathering immersion feel which is what most games today are going after and is good enough for me.

Movie "300" is even less realistic than a typical AoS game, yet it is immersive, very much so. Immersion means that for a moment  we forget that we are playing a game, watching a movie or reading a book - we live them, we experience them from inside their imaginary worlds. 

When we are playing chess, there is no immersion, we think only about rules and calculate our next moves. For you, playing AoS is akin to playing a game of chess. There is nothing wrong about it, but for many people (the majority here, it would seem) AoS experience also involves creating and living interesting stories.

 

Edited by Ointagru

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I don't agree. One can be totally immersed in a game of a chess (or scientific research or mathematics) . 

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As an old hat at rpg discussions, I have come to realize that "immersion" 90% of the time means "what I like" or "what I'm used to" more than anything else.  Also it's usually only brought up during edition changes or discussing games different from what THEY play on a regular basis. Its kind of a worthless term

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I disagree with the framing that these two are opposed - they don't have to be, and in fact it is the goal of the best rules writers that they not be at odds at all.

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I voted middle, but that said the little parenthetical definitions were not how I view the terms.

For me, immersion in AoS just means that while I'm playing, nothing happening on the table jars me back to reality, or takes me out of AoS.

For instance, the infamous Marneus calgar school bus army is a non-starter for me, even if it is flavorful.

It's also why I hate proxies/counts as.

Edited by Sleboda

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For me immersion is the cool flavorful abilities that make armies and units feel unique and close to what they should be in lore and I think there needs to be a balance of both.

For example, skullreapers used to keep track of models they killed and gained bonuses  and skullcrushers used to gain a bravery boost when they killed their first models because they dipped their banner in blood. Both were very flavorful and increased my immersion but they were kinda clunky to keep track of but I am kinda sad they are gone because it makes Khore feel a bit more generic.

On the flip side, I struggle with 40k because there are so many rules that break my immersion like character targeting rules that make no sense but have to be there so all characters dont die immediately.

 

 

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So, one week after the poll has been made, we can safely conclude that the majority - nine out of ten players -,  holds that both rules AND immersion (however one defines it) are important. Only a tiny minority –  one out of ten players –  cares exclusively for  one or the other aspect of the game.

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Unfortunately that conclusion is rather hollow unless we can also define what immersion means to everyone as well.

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On 4/1/2019 at 10:44 PM, Sleboda said:

I voted middle, but that said the little parenthetical definitions were not how I view the terms.

For me, immersion in AoS just means that while I'm playing, nothing happening on the table jars me back to reality, or takes me out of AoS.

For instance, the infamous Marneus calgar school bus army is a non-starter for me, even if it is flavorful.

It's also why I hate proxies/counts as.

What is this "Marneus calgar school bus army" you speak of?

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41 minutes ago, xking said:

What is this "Marneus calgar school bus army" you speak of?

It's a classic from the old days of the Games Workshop Grand Tournament era. It has come to symbolize the problem of form over function, cool-for-me over cool-for-both-of-us, etc.

Rhinos were big yellow school buses. It was a whole grade school theme that completely took the world out of the game.

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7 minutes ago, Sleboda said:

It's a classic from the old days of the Games Workshop Grand Tournament era. It has come to symbolize the problem of form over function, cool-for-me over cool-for-both-of-us, etc.

Rhinos were big yellow school buses. It was a whole grade school theme that completely took the world out of the game.

So it's a combination of people complaining about transports and at the same time, those transports being yellow?

Marneus calgar must have been, then.

Edited by xking

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14 hours ago, xking said:

So it's a combination of people complaining about transports and at the same time, those transports being yellow?

Marneus calgar must have been, then.

No. It's pretty much 100% about the army not representing any possible aspect of the background, thus pulling the opponent out of the 'feel' of the game.

I have a friend who has an army themed on the game Candyland, with cotton ball balloons and more. 

Another made an army of the minions from the movies.

The school bus army had buses that your kids ride to school on modern day Earth.

 

All of these are very creative, fun to look at, and take a lot of effort to produce.

All of them completely destroy any chance you have, as the opponent at the table, to buy into the idea that you are fighting any sort of variant of the armies that exist in-universe. The whole "it's a big universe - anything is possible" line is not good enough when what is on the table is a clear, direct reference to a real-world thing that you can go and touch today.

 

BTW, my responses to people have been slower lately because of something that might be related to the recent TGA outage.

Ever since it came back, I cannot quote or type anything in a field on my Android phone.  Plus, there is a black "Loading" image stuck on the screen. This means I only get to reply when I'm near my PC. Anyone else?

Edited by Sleboda
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