Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Economy of Actions

wotc_Rodney put up an amazing post about a concept he calls the "Economy of Actions". This goes immediately into my collection of soundbites for game development.

"it seems like one of the most important commodities any player can have is simply the ability to take an action.
...By taking an action, you are expending a resource...every [game] that limits the number of actions you can take on your turn has an underlying economy that assigns value to these actions."

That's a really eye-opening observation (for me, anyway.) It hits very close to home for a prototype I'm working on right now, where players compete for the abilityto take various actions, and the win condition is basically "be able to take more actions than the other players."

Rodney follows through on the idea a bit:
" a real economy, if you manage your resources and spend them on appropriate actions and at appropriate times, you gain advantage.
...action denial or action hoarding not only tips the balance on the economy of actions, it can lead to a game just not being any fun. One of the worst feelings is sitting there with a hand full of cards (or whatever) and not getting any actions..."

This last remark about how un-fun it is to watch other people take a ton of actions is good because it reminds me I have to be really careful about my aforementioned win condition...

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