Dice Tower Network Podcast: Ludology

The Ludology site is about providing an analytical discussion of the how's and why's of the world of board games. Rather than news and tgreviews, Ludology explores a variety of topics about games from a wider lens, as well as discuss game history, game design and game players.

Regular Contributors:

Ludology Episodes

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Emma and Gil welcome accomplished designer Cole Wehrle, designer of Root, Oath, and Pax Pamir (Second Edition), back to the show (Cole previously appeared on Ludology 163 - A Pain in the Asymmetry). We discuss fairness in games.

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In today's Biography of a Board Game, Scott takes us through the long history of The Game of the Goose, which became a template for almost every roll-and-move game into Victorian times and beyond.

Show notes:

1m49s: The ancient Egyptian game of Mehen 

2m04s: History of the labyrinth

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Emma and Gil welcome Jonny Pac, designer of Coloma and other games set in the Gold Rush West. Our main topic of discussion is multiple paths to victory: what it brings to a game, what kinds of games need it, what kinds of games don't, and how to avoid the dreaded "point salad" effect.

Jonny's published games:

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Geoff welcomes Dr. James Wootton, quantum computing expert and one of the people behind the digital game Hello Quantum, which is made to teach its player about the fundamentals of quantum computing. 

Here is Dr. Wootton's blog.

Here is the Quantum Information Science Kit (QISKIT) blog Dr. Wootton mentioned.

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Geoff welcomes Dr. James Wootton, quantum computing expert and one of the people behind the digital game Hello Quantum, which is made to teach its player about the fundamentals of quantum computing. 

Here is Dr. Wootton's blog.

Here is the Quantum Information Science Kit (QISKIT) blog Dr. Wootton mentioned.

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Emma and Gil welcome Jennifer Ellis and Keith Baker of Twogether Studios. We discuss their approach for integrating stories into their game, whether directly embedded in their game, letting them emerge from the players, or evoked from the look of the product. 

Show notes:

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Scott leads us through the history of Trivial Pursuit, from its conception from two Canadian journalists after trying to play a game of Scrabble with missing pieces, to a full-fledged global 80s fad, to a billion-dollar empire.

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Professor Scott Rogers joins Gil and Emma once again! This time, we're discussing Scott's time as an Imagineer designing games and experiences for Disneyland, and his subsequent work designing VR attractions. It's a fascinating topic, with a surprising amount of overlap into any kind of game design! 

Show notes:

05m45s: More info about Disney Play here. 

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Geoff discusses Alpha Zero, a neural net that can play Go, Chess, and Shogi better than anyone in the world. It defeated the best AI in those respective games (each of whom had previously defeated the best humans in the world) with only a few hours of training. What does this spell for the future of AI, and the future of game design?

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Emma and Gil welcome Geoff Engelstein and Isaac Shalev back to the show to discuss their new book Building Blocks of Tabletop Game Design. This is a reference of board game mechanisms that any designer, new or experienced, can use to look up different tools they can use to solve problems in game design.

Games and other things mentioned in this episode:

19m30s: 

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