Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The aesthethics of scoring and murder

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective is widely praised, but not without controversy. The scoring, which costs five points to the player for each clue taken, is often declared to be at odds with the narrative. In fact, many players and even critics recommend ignoring it completely.

I disagree. I believe the scoring is not only an integral part of the game, but an important driver of its aesthetics.

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The “alpha player” in coops is a symptom, not the disease

If you’ve played cooperative games, you might have heard of the “alpha player”. The guy who tells everyone what to do – to the point of not letting others play – is a common source of contention. Critics, players and designers alike often debate about its implications and what steps can be taken to curtail it.

However, I believe the alpha player is but a symptom of deeper issues.

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Innovation ★★★★

If I were a game designer, I would like to make a game like Innovation. Inside its small package, lies a clever civilization game where each card has its own ludicrous effect. It’s the kind of title I would be happy to play a hundred times and whose chaotic nature only furthers my enjoyment.

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