The article at hand focuses on the reason why some players would choose to play an analog board game on their own, instead of sharing it with others. The question Dale Leorke aimed to answer with this research was ‘what factors, circumstances or personal preferences motivate people to play board games solo?’. For this, the author used the BoardGameGeek forums in order to acquire data on the subject. The data included posts from 2014-2017, coded thematically and grouped according to the reasons mentioned most often. When it comes to the results, there did not appear to be any major or dominant reason for solo play but instead, social aspect, genre and playstyle came up equally as often.
‘Social reasons’ is the first theme discussed as perhaps the most obvious reason for solo gaming. Lack of people to share the game and the experience with, or just the lack of time and opportunity to gather a group of players to play with, is one of the reasons why players opt for solo boardgaming; the fact that the group would not gather often enough is also mentioned.
The second theme is based around genre; players telling of their experiences of enjoying a different kind of board game than their friends or families and thus choosing the play it alone instead of abandoning it. Players may also have a different play style or way of solving puzzles that might not be the same as their peers, while some games do not even have a multiplayer option or are designed to be played alone. From here comes the third and final theme discussed in the article; play style reasons. Some players expressed their desire to play on their own in order to unwind, relax and not have to ‘put up’ with the social aspect of board gaming but the
different style of play makes a difference as well. Players could move at their own pace and take the opportunity to learn the game better before playing it with others. This is, afterall, a useful tool when it comes to learning the rules faster.
The opportunity for future research is mentioned in the article as well, with the desire to publish an online survey where players could, more easily, express their opinions on solo play.
Photos by author
Article from: http://analoggamestudies.org/2018/12/solo-board-gaming-an-analysis-of-player-motivations/
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