Wednesday, September 21, 2011

What is a 'Fun Game'?

This is not a dissertation on why Malifaux is better than 40K or Warhammer or Warmahordes or Infinity or ... It is, but that's not what this is about. This is more of an open discussion on the difference between a 'fun' and a 'competitive' game. This all stems from a game of Malifaux I played against a player I would consider almost over competitive. He also makes it a point to tell everyone he only really likes to play 'fun games.' During our game he was getting a little over watchful of the distance I was moving, I was pretty sure I was short, but the threat I would pose would be enough. In the end I was short, but he had made it a thing, he said something about a 'fun game' and I said he had never played one. We worked it out that our definitions differed of 'fun game.' It led me to wonder if others also saw it differently.

I'm going to start off with my definition: A fun game is where both players are there to have fun, and as such, are willing to work to make sure their opponent also has fun. A competitive game is not necessarily a game where I don't plan to have fun, but it is no longer my job to make sure you have fun. I don't tend to move far from the fun game side, but that may be a skill issue.
My opponent's definition: a "fun game" is a game where he is not a stickler on rules, and will let his opponent go back. In a non-fun game, it's all business.
Personally, I see his "fun game" as just good sportsmanship. I don't fault him his play style, some people are more competitive than others. Some can turn it off, other are always on(or off, I fear that's me). That's one way to play. My issue comes from the constant use of "fun game." I don't suppose I should fault him his definition, I just don't see it that way.
So, what do you all think, which definition do you use? Do you even have one, or is it all the same game, just different spaces?
If anyone is interested, the full report is over on my blog.

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