Boardgames To Go was one of first boardgame podcasts, starting in March 2005. It's still going strong, now relocated to Boardgamegeek. Meanwhile the old posts are archived here. The audio files of the podcast were unchanged by this, and you shouldn't even notice the change on your MP3 player.

If you're here for the March 2005-June 2012 archives, have fun with the archeology. :-)

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Mark Johnson's occasional & opinionated podcast about family strategy boardgames

Sunday, August 30, 2009

BGTG 96 - Translations, Editions, and Revisions (with David Gullett)

Let me clear about this--most of the explanation for the delay in this podcast (recorded almost two months ago) is simply that I never got around to finishing & posting it. Part of that is because the show is longer than usual--longer than fits on a CD--and I thought I wanted to edit it down considerably. But as you know if you're a longtime listener, I don't really do that kind of editing. I don't do much editing at all, truthfully. (Feedback welcome on that, by the way.) After I gave up the idea of editing out so much content, I figured I'd just post the show in two parts, spaced about a week apart. Now that it's taken me another few weeks to even do that much, I'm giving up, deciding to post the whole thing. I don't think hardly anybody burns these onto CDs in 2009 anyway, and some gaming podcasts are even longer. So this is part procrastination/laziness, part experiment. Let me know what you think. Whew!

This is a topic of interest to the truly geeky, the ones that care a little too much about their games. That's me, and it's probably you, too. (After all, you're reading a boardgame blog, listening to a boardgame podcast! You've got it bad . . . ) You won't be in this hobby very long before you encounter some opinions, including your own, about which version of a game is best. The original? The one where they changed the artwork & components? Or the one where they redeveloped the game into something just a little different? Small World is the game that triggered me to record this episode. I'm a huge fan of Vinci, which was Small World's differently-themed predecessor.

Do I like Small World? Yes.

Do I prefer it to Vinci? No way.

Why not? Because of the theme. Vinci has a historic theme and map, while Small World has a fantasy theme and map. You know my preferences. I've heard some say that Vinci has no theme, but I don't understand that at all. Clearly we have very different ideas of what constitutes a game theme. (That's another podcast I'd like to tackle some day.) Of the several design modifications in the latter game, I prefer the original, but they're not a big deal. It's the theme that is driving my opinion, more than anything.

Which do I recommend? Well, it depends on the gamer, but I have to admit that most will probably prefer Small World. Certainly you can easily buy Small World, while Vinci is now, sadly, Out-Of-Print (OOP).
We talk about a lot more than Small World as I tried to generalize what's going on here. All those versions of Settlers, Cosmic Encounter, Medici, and even Careers make it in to the discussion.