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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Errata: All quiet

(Errata is the weekly Q&A feature on Geek Insight. Feel free to post any board game related questions, concerns, or disputes).

This week was questionless.  All is quiet.  The board gamers serenely play without the need for mighty e-wisdom. 

So, today a question for you. 

I hate finding out I've been playing a game wrong.  It happens every now and again that I've misread some minor rule somewhere only to find out later, on a re-read of the rulebook or when a new friend who has played before comes along, that I find out I've got something totally bass ackwards. 

It's like when you've been singing the lyrics to your favorite song and your friend stops and laughs at you.  "Alanis isn't singing about her 'cross-eyed bear' in "You Oughtta Know," she's saying 'the cross I bear.'"  (True story, by the way). 

The most memorable example is that my group used to play that a hex in Settlers of Catan produced only one good for each player no matter how many settlements they had on the hex (or two goods for a city).  We played that way for about a year before a re-read of the rules set us straight.  It's a minor thing that didn't impact the game very often, but it does slightly lessen the impact of a crowded four or six player board. 

So, what memorable rules mis-reads do you have?

(Questions for next week can be sent to me over twitter, via e-mail, or left as comments to this post)


  1. Sooooo many people play Apples to Apples in a way inconsistent with the rules (I hate to say "wrong"), and most people think that fees etc in Monopoly are supposed to go into the center and be claimed by a player on Free Parking.

    I can't remember any doozies of my own, but we played all the way through Through the Ages for the first time, and only at the end realized we were not assessing cultural points correctly; we were hardly assessing them at all, so culture had no impact, but it's a third of the game, so obviously our experience suffered.

    Finally, did you know that a double jump in chinese checkers gives you the right to punch your opponent in the arm as hard as you can? Well, not really, but don't tell my brother.

  2. That gives me an idea for today's discussion topic...