Welcome to Ludology, an analytical discussion of the how’s and why’s of the world of board games. Rather than news and reviews, Ludology explores a variety of topics about games from a wider lens, as well as discuss game history, game design and game players.

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Have your own thoughts about our topics? We encourage you to visit us at our guild on Boardgamegeek to get involved in a continuing discussion.

You can also email us at gil@ludology.net or geoff@ludology.net.

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As humans we overvalue losing something and undervalue gaining it. This is called Loss Aversion, and is a well studied psychological effect.

How do games incorporate Loss Aversion? How does it affect us as players, and how can game designers use it to create a more emotional and engaging experience?  When can Loss Aversion hurt a game rather than help it?

Duration: 58:22

Direct download: Ludology_Episode_59.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

In this classic GameTek episode, Geoff discusses long games and how to keep players engaged for many hours. What are the different types of engagment, which are effective, and which are mentally taxing?

Duration: 05:52

Direct download: GameTek_Classic_58_-_Player_Engagement.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:13am EDT

Ryan proposes a radical change to the mechanics of Trading in the Mediterranean to simplify and smooth our the gameplay, and Geoff wants to talk about it.  Will it throw the baby out with the bathwater? What is the heart of the game?

Duration: 1:16:05

Direct download: Ludology_Episode_58.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:41am EDT

In this classic GameTek, Geoff takes a look at car washes and the Endowed Progress Effect. How can we use it to get players more engaged in a game?

Duration: 05:30

Direct download: GameTek_Classic_57_-_Endowed_Progress.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EDT

Ryan and Geoff tackle the concept of an 'objective' in a game - not just end game objectives, but techniques for building a series of mini-objectives to keep the player engaged and the game moving forward.

What types of objectives work well? What is the difference between public, private, and hidden objectives, and how do those interact?

Duration: 01:17:54

Direct download: Ludology_Episode_57.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:00am EDT