Our group has not been very talkative. In the intent of starting a vigorous discussion, I am starting a chain with this phrase:
Paper and cardboard games are more fun than computer games because....
Please add your own continuation, get your friends to add a continuation, and get your other friends to react vigorously to the opinions expressed.
I will send a reward to the participant who has the most original observation, if there is one of course. I am the sole referee here....: _ )
Well, I will say that paper and cardboard games are more fun because of the personal interactions and body language reading that is missed in computer games...
But saying that I wouldn't say that OLDER paper and cardboard games are better than the modern board game which has had a true Renaissance in the last decade and have much better interaction, better mechanics, shorter game time, more choices, etc. 2011 might be another breakout year of new games with intriguing mechanics as they build upon past successes.
I prefer to call them "face to face" games, having also tried out "tabletop" and "analog" games. Calling them "face to face" games emphasizes the very important rich social interactions that can take place in these games.
One huge advantage of face to face games is that they can be adjusted easily by the participants or facilitators to create a better gaming experience.
If you are playing a video game and there's something you don't like about it, there's very little you can do in most games. (Some games allow modifications to get around this.)
But with face to face games, each play is a unique experience of games, players, and context. The players can change the rules, the components, the ending condition, or really anything they want about the game (assuming all agree) to make it fit better with the situation.
It's all about play, and it's much better when the players control the game instead of the game controlling the players.
Face-to-face is a very thoughtful description, and your observation very pertinent. One of my friends (a French friend) uses the term, présenciel, from présence, and logiciel, the French for software.
Do I have your permission to quote your observations, anonymously if you prefer, in a review I am writing of a book on electronic games for education ?
Glad you brought this topic up. I do agree that the 'face to face' games are more engaging. The full dimension-experience can draw in more participants - those with different likes and levels of gaming experience. I think we can observe body language and pick up earlier when someone needs encouragement or help to fully engage.