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  1. #21
    Member Notthevictim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirothak View Post
    honestly I think is is perfectly fine the way it is, the meaning is perfectly easy to figure out.
    I disagree. I couldn't figure out the full definition the way it was. It probably needs to be a little longer.

    "At the beginning of your turn, Bad Wolf is healed of 1 damage" That would clear it up for me.
    -Notthevictim

  2. #22
    Member kirkwb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirothak View Post
    honestly I think is is perfectly fine the way it is, the meaning is perfectly easy to figure out.
    Then you are a mind reader reading Kyle's mind all the way over in Vietnam.

    Seriously, there's a reason card text needs to be written clearly. It's not about what makes sense to you, it's about communication and making sure the person you are conveying information to understands everything they need to know. It's already been tried, tested and true in every TCG since Magic first came out. If you are not clear and leave it open to assumption, some players will draw the wrong conclusions. Two players playing under different assumptions is a distraction that takes the fun out of the game.

    You need to answer the W's, "Who? What? Where? and When?"

    http://wowtcgdb.com/carddetail.aspx?id=312

    Text from that card:

    "At the start of your turn, Ka'tali Stonetusk heals 1 damage from himself."

    it answers everything you need to know it one concise sentence:

    1) Who? -Ka'tali.
    2) What? -Heals 1 damage.
    3) Where? -From himself.
    4) When? -at the start of your turn.

    Can you make any other assumptions about what that card does?

    Bad Wolf:

    Bad Wolf heals 1 damage each turn.

    1) Who? -Bad Wolf.
    2) What? -Heals 1 damage.
    3) Where? -Not answered.
    4) When? -Each turn.

    1) Is clear.
    2) Is clear.
    3) Is not defined. A couple of you assume it's from himself, but can you site to me where it says that other than Kyle's clarification post in this thread? When I come across a card that isn't clear in the game, do I need to stop play and look through the forum to get clarification?
    4) It's actually not each turn, it's actually only on your turn (as Kyle said in his post). Also, when during my turn is not defined.

    Yes the programing takes care of all those details, but when that card hits the board and I need to make combat decisions, I want to know those details before it's too late.

    Again, I'm not making this stuff up. Go read all of Mark Rosewater's articles on game design for the last decade or so. He was there from the beginning and learned the hard way. History is there to be learned from so you don't repeat the same mistakes.

    I want this game to be successful, and I'm looking forward to it.

    anecdote: I was invited to visit the Cryptozoic Studio and got meet and talk with the game designers. They'd just moved the IP over from UDE and one of our conversations had to do with how UDE, a Sport Card company, never understood the need for months game development and testing for each set and the need for one "Rules guy" who was the guru and rules writer. Every card has to go through this guy to make sure it is clear and concise to the world, not just the designers.

    It's hard to edit yourself, because you know the meaning you are trying to communicate. I play around with my own board and card game designs. I'll write the first draft, introduce it to my friends and they always see some rules text in a different way than I intended and I learn and I talk to them about it and we come up with a better way to write what my intention is. Eventually, 4 or 5 drafts in it becomes clear enough that when I teach the game to new players they understand everything.

    God is in the details.

    Look at that Ka'tali Stonetusk card text again. It answers the "Who? What? Where? and When?" but it also has one other very subtle detail. It puts the When at the start of the sentence. Why Is that? Why doesn't it just say:

    "Ka'tali Stonetusk heals 1 damage from himself at the start of your turn."

    It's still means the same thing, but by putting "At the start of your turn," at the beginning of the sentence it's a subliminal reminder of when it happens so the player does not forget the trigger. It puts a little more importance on the "When" so you don't forget.

    I guess I need to start a blog as I'm coming off very opinionated

  3. #23
    Member kaboom132's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paradox View Post
    That's better, but I still see it as unnecessary verbiage. I just don't see the card as being all that ambiguous, though the timing of the healing could be more specific and thus opening more design options (as has been discussed).

    Kaboom, this sounds like a compromise position you're taking, and that's cool. But speaking to you specifically: when you read the card, did you have any doubt as to whether the text meant that the Bad Wolf was going to receive one hit point/life back (sometime during it's turn)?

    Don't get me wrong, I am all for clarity and the timing of the special action really should be more explicit- but I'd actually like to avoid excessive text where it's not necessary. Keep it clean, simple, and straightforward. Avoid verbal clutter. If the Bad Wolf was going to be healing someone else, the text would say that. If someone is determined to read some other meaning into the card, then the program will still follow the correct interpretation.. And they'll learn for next time. I just question if anybody is going to make that mistake anyway, because it seems straight forward to me.

    My .02 cents.
    I see what the meaning is clearly, but give this card to 1000 people and I can guarantee that there's at least one who will need help clarifying. Another problem with the text is that it did make me cringe when I read it - the length doesn't really matter, it's how it flows, and "Bad wolf heals 1 damage each turn" doesn't flow very well. With TCGs, I like to make it so that you are defined as the controller, so that it's not like the creature is an independent mind (but maybe that's just me). The "At the (insert stage of turn)" is essential so that you know exactly when to take off 1 damage from Bad Wolf. Maybe "At the beginning of your turn, you may heal Bad Wolf for 1 damage"? Or, if you don't like the "You are this creature's absolute master" perspective, how about "At the beginning of your turn, Bad Wolf may heal himself for 1 damage"?
    Last edited by kaboom132; 07-30-2010 at 09:28 PM.

  4. #24
    The Creator Kyle's Avatar
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    I agree that it is better to err on the side of clarity...




    Luckily it is so easy to update the cards in an online game

  5. #25
    Member Paradox's Avatar
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    There doesn't seem to be much point in a lengthy reply in this thread, as Kyle has made a decision. From a business perspective it makes sense. If prospective consumers are saying that they don't understand what the card's special ability does, it behooves a designer to make it very explicit. That's why you have beta-testers, and happy consumers buy cards. That pretty much trumps any argument I could make.

    I still think this was a non-issue from the beginning, and the potential for confusion has been really exaggerated . However in the face of someone actually saying, "I don't get it", I don't know what to say. Certainly I wouldn't want anyone to be excluded from the game.

    Kyle, would you at least consider finding some way of expressing the special ability that makes some sense grammatically? The broken english is actually detracting from the card. If not I'm SOL. Get used to it or don't play I guess.
    Follow along with my Shadow Era Blog, where hopefully we'll be going through the Beta-Test together! Comments and observations welcome!

  6. #26
    Member Paradox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaboom132 View Post
    I see what the meaning is clearly
    And so you answered my question. If this was a court room tv drama, this is where I'd say, "That is all from this witness" and cut you off from any further editorial.

    But I respect you, and I'm interested in what you have to say. Nevertheless, you're about defend a position that says the card is confusing when you don't actually find it confusing. I don't know if that is empathy or sympathy (either is a virtue), but I value what you actually think. What you think informs whether the ability is clear or not by a reasonable standard. When you say the card is confusing when it doesn't actually confuse you, you're adding something to mix.

    Though certainly you're entitled to your opinion, as are the other respondents.


    Quote Originally Posted by kaboom132 View Post
    but give this card to 1000 people and I can guarantee that there's at least one who will need help clarifying.
    Lolol. Perhaps in the children's game of Chinese Whispers or in the real life phenomenon of multiple eye-witness accounts given to police, I would agree. You might get wildly different interpretations. However if a 1000 people read a short 7 word sentence with no clauses, and get wildly different interpretations, then I would look for alternate reasons why that is. I'll leave those to your imagination.

    Quote Originally Posted by kaboom132 View Post
    Another problem with the text is that it did make me cringe when I read it - the length doesn't really matter, it's how it flows, and "Bad wolf heals 1 damage each turn" doesn't flow very well.
    We have to agree to disagree then. To me, that's just simple and straight forward. I'd save the artful prose for the flavor text. At the risk of showing my disappointment with some of the responses this thread has garnered from other posters, I think what Kyle replaced it with is goobledegook. Yeah, I understand it. But I could generally figure out what Bizzaro was saying in Superman comics too.

    Quote Originally Posted by kaboom132 View Post
    With TCGs, I like to make it so that you are defined as the controller, so that it's not like the creature is an independent mind (but maybe that's just me). The "At the (insert stage of turn)" is essential so that you know exactly when to take off 1 damage from Bad Wolf. Maybe "At the beginning of your turn, you may heal Bad Wolf for 1 damage"? Or, if you don't like the "You are this creature's absolute master" perspective, how about "At the beginning of your turn, Bad Wolf may heal himself for 1 damage"?
    At this point I don't think we're talking about the same thing any longer. I have no issue with a clause that states when the ability should take place. That is "At the start of your turn," is just fine. Awesome. All good. If you think I have an issue with that KAboom, then there's been a misunderstanding.

    On the other hand, adding "from himself" at the end makes me want to laugh out loud. And then sort of cry.

    Ironically I thought I made that pretty clear in my previous posts, so maybe you've demonstrated the need after all.

    EDIT: I think we can all assume that we all want this game to be successful, even if we disagree with each other. Stating "I want this game to be successful" as means to support a position is kind of backhanded. Because it implies that the other person doesn't want the game to be successful otherwise they wouldn't have their opinion (that just so happens to not agree with our own).

    I may not agree with other people who have chimed in with a different opinion, but I don't doubt their sincerity.
    Last edited by Paradox; 07-31-2010 at 05:29 AM. Reason: Added comment under Boldface EDIT
    Follow along with my Shadow Era Blog, where hopefully we'll be going through the Beta-Test together! Comments and observations welcome!

  7. #27
    Member Paradox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaboom132 View Post
    With TCGs, I like to make it so that you are defined as the controller, so that it's not like the creature is an independent mind (but maybe that's just me). The "At the (insert stage of turn)" is essential so that you know exactly when to take off 1 damage from Bad Wolf. Maybe "At the beginning of your turn, you may heal Bad Wolf for 1 damage"?
    I was going to stop beating this dead horse this morning, but I just wanted to remark that the distinction you're making was lost on me last night.

    Yeah, that's not bad. That would work. I see what you're saying. I certainly think it works better than the Bad Wolf healing from himself.
    Follow along with my Shadow Era Blog, where hopefully we'll be going through the Beta-Test together! Comments and observations welcome!

  8. #28
    Member kirkwb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paradox View Post
    I think we can all assume that we all want this game to be successful, even if we disagree with each other. Stating "I want this game to be successful" as means to support a position is kind of backhanded. Because it implies that the other person doesn't want the game to be successful otherwise they wouldn't have their opinion (that just so happens to not agree with our own).

    I may not agree with other people who have chimed in with a different opinion, but I don't doubt their sincerity.
    Paradox, I sincerely apologize if you got that implication when I expressed that statement. Let me explain what I really meant by writing that.

    I want this game to be successful, and I'm looking forward to it.

    I'm very passionate about games, and I can tell that you are as well. I relate to and respect your own passion. That sentence, in bold above, expresses my own feelings and hopes for this game without any other meaning intended.

    There was a reason I put it in my post and I will expand on that and hope that you find it sincere.

    When writing a criticism, even when my intentions are pure and completely expressed to be constructive, I realize that some may be offended by it and I worry that I may be coming off as negative. I wanted to make sure that everyone knew my intention behind the criticism and that it was with hope for the success of this game.

    As for why the, "...from himself," clarification bothers you, I would like to know what you see that is not grammatically correct or why it makes you cringe.

    In the case of this sentence, it is used as a reflexive form of him, as in the sentence, "He cut himself."

    What would be your alternative construction of that sentence?

  9. #29
    Member Paradox's Avatar
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    Kirkwb,

    In the spirit of your apology, I apologize as well. I clearly let my emotions get the best of me. I'm very sensitive towards someone speaking in a condescending manner, and sometimes I perceive that behavior when it isn't really there.

    I accept your passion for gaming, and your good intentions and goodwill. It is returned in kind. So we're cool.

    Having said that, let's talk about the card and the grammar.

    As a precursor to your post, I think there's two issues here. Let me identify them as I understand them.

    1. The issue whether it is confusing as to who is actually being healed. Respectfully, I didn't think the original card left any ambiguity. However, I can accept that someone will be thrown off by it. I'm almost tempted to suggest that the appropriate verb should be regenerate, instead of healing. That is, that 'regenerate' be the term for self-healing; whereas 'healing' refers to another creature (hero or ally) in the game. Establishing and defining ability or action keywords as you suggested earlier. In any case, if we need to spell the recipient of the healing, that's okay. It's not worth arguing over.
    2. How do we express who is actually being healed in such a manner that reads properly and looks professional. That sounds like a dig, but I don't mean it to be!


    So let me address your post directly.

    Quote Originally Posted by kirkwb View Post
    As for why the, "...from himself," clarification bothers you, I would like to know what you see that is not grammatically correct or why it makes you cringe.

    In the case of this sentence, it is used as a reflexive form of him, as in the sentence, "He cut himself."

    What would be your alternative construction of that sentence?
    First, it doesn't pass a basic read-aloud test. In Ye Olden Days I was taught to read something aloud. If it sounds odd or weird, then chances are it probably is incorrect. That being said, this is an entirely subjective argument. I'm just saying that when I read that sentence- I keep re-reading it. I screw up my face and squint at the text. My reaction is "huh?" As a bit of quality control, I don't want that to be a new consumers first reaction.

    Okay, let me make a less subjective argument.

    The problem is not with the words "him" or "himself", it is with the word from.

    'From' implies that something is coming out of somewhere. And I suppose you could argue that "damage is coming out of the Bad Wolf". However the verb in the sentence is heal. The word heal, in of itself, already conveys that damage will be removed.

    I want to be sensitive towards putting any words in your mouth, but I think your objective is to make it clear who exactly is being healed. So try this:

    "At the start of your turn, Bad Wolf heals himself 1 damage."

    That sounds a little funny too, but most gamers will accept it, because they'll have the context that 'heal' represents a specific action.

    I am tempted to suggest: "At the start of your turn, Bad Wolf is healed 1 point of damage." The only problem with that is that "is" is a passive verb. Customarily you want to avoid passive language. On the other hand, sometimes you can get away with it. In such a short sentence perhaps it would be okay. I leave that up to Kyle.

    Of course: "At the start of your turn, Bad Wolf regenerates 1 damage" is also fairly concise and clear.

    Okay Kirkwb, back to you. What do you think?

    EDIT: Just rediscovered this reference by Kyle:

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle View Post
    The Wulven class is about self-regeneration, packs, stealth, speed.
    It makes a good case for using the term regeneration instead of healing.
    Last edited by Paradox; 07-31-2010 at 08:02 PM.
    Follow along with my Shadow Era Blog, where hopefully we'll be going through the Beta-Test together! Comments and observations welcome!

  10. #30
    Member kirkwb's Avatar
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    No worries or need to apologize, I recognized your passion for what it was and took no offense. (I did sense a little exaggeration, hyperbole and sarcasm, but being a fan of all those things myself, I appreciated it for what it was )

    I too, use the read aloud test, and the new wording works for me because I've read it many times in other games.

    I guess your issue isn't with using, "himself," as much as the, "from," now. I do not know how else to describe the removal of damage.

    If a card deals damage to something, I use, "to."

    If a card heals damage from something, I use, "from."

    Is there another way to describe those two functions?

    I do like your "regenerates" as a key word, you might go back and read my suggestions on Keywords and see that they can be used very effectively in a digital medium.

    All will be well, and I'm sure many things will be cleared up after we actually get to play and Beta Testing commences.

    Have fun when it comes out!

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