thread: 2013-06-20 : The Sundered Land

On 2013-07-16, Vincent wrote:

Okay! With a fresh game in mind, I want to do some summing up.

Argument one, put forward by John Mc, Marhault, and others, is that if the internet has its biz together, the pilgrim can’t win, no matter how skilfully the pilgrim’s player plays. Yesterday’s game doesn’t refute this argument! It’s definitely a data point on their side.

Nevertheless my guess is that with skilled play on both sides, the pilgrim can survive about 20% of the time. I’ll change my guess once I see something like 10 games in a row with no surviving pilgrims.

Argument two, put forward by Gordon and others, with support perhaps from Weeks and others, is that the game is better served when its players don’t exclusively pursue their stated goals, but let other goals also contribute, like “make the pilgrim’s doom interesting,” “entertain my audience,” or “play soft so my opponent has a chance.”

Again, the game yesterday doesn’t really refute this. You guys can make your own judgments about how you enjoy the game, and whether you enjoy the game at all.

But the game yesterday is, I think, a nice clear counterexample.

Particularly, Gordon: what makes the pilgrim’s doom interesting IS the no-holds-barred, uneven struggle between the players.

It’s just like in Chess: it’s not your job to make being checkmated interesting for your opponent, it’s your opponent’s job to make checkmating her interesting (that is, challenging) for you. It’s not the internet’s job to make the pilgrim’s doom interesting, it’s the pilgrim player’s job to make the pilgrim’s doom hard to win.

Make sense? The game is only as interesting as it is challenging, and it’s only as challenging as how hard its players play to their stated goals.


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