MDA & 8 Kinds of Fun

I’m a huge fan of Settlers of Catan, and I think it primarily utilizes mechanics around selected randomness. It keeps the individual games unique and fresh by randomizing tiles and their production values, along with other cards that provide benefits. This creates a unique dynamic between players, as there’s an almost forced cooperation where players benefit from trading with each other but must do so in a way that maximizes their advantage and minimizes the advantage of the opponents. This creates an aesthetic that feels very plausible and real, as it feels like a way that actual nations and groups would barter and interact in times of tension. Both sides have things to gain from interacting with each other, however it must be done in a where where you can still win in a war if need be (in the case of the game, you can still reach the point goal faster than they can). I enjoy this kind of game, where you need to balance your own needs against your opponent’s , and where each individual game has a level of randomness and unpredictability. There is no guaranteed way to win, as even if you play in a theoretically perfect way, the dice may simply roll against you. This keeps everyone engaged, as your luck could turn at any moment and you could go from behind to ahead very quickly, making it a fun experience for everyone involved.

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