Category Archives: Class Review

Week one reflection: Ultimate Wolf

This game was a fun introduction game to the class. This game is similar to among us where there are 3 imposters, and the rest are villagers. The session we played in class was really fun and filled with people laughing with one another. While this was happening people was being called out for them being suspicious. This one moment in the session one of the wolfs was cursed where they were not able to speak that round. While this happened everyone was saying speak if you are not suspicious. So he was voted to be eliminated because of not speaking.

These are the time’s where the game can be unfair and funny at the same time, which makes it more interesting. For the game though that makes it more difficult is the fact of its nearly impossible to say that one person is a wolf or villager. Because their are no actions on the part of the wolves and no action of the villagers you cant be certain of who’s who. I would say this would be a big flaw because it would be very easy for the wolves to kill the villagers and get away from being voted by just agreeing with the majority and not speak up for anyone.

This has some ties to leadership in the fact of each time the “day” cycle would happen their was one person that would be kind of the voice for the group. This person would take on the role of the leader for that day. It would change some from day to day and everyone would listen. I know for me and two others what we did was listen to someone that said the first person that votes someone out was the guilty one so we would all go by this role. This person took on a leadership method and few others thought this sounded reasonable and joined him in it. But in all fairness this was a fun game that I believed everyone in class had a great time with and would recommend playing with a group of friends. Because it would be chaotic and people yelling at one another.

T.I.M.E Stories Reflection – Week 2

On April 20th our class had a choice to either dive deeper into the adventures of T.I.M.E Stories or to participate in free play. Although my group and I encountered many struggles during our first session the week before, we chose to challenge ourselves and continue playing T.I.M.E Stories. The scenario we played was the Asylum, and at the beginning of the round we had the opportunity to choose which character we would be playing with. None of us were able to see each character’s conditions and characteristics before choosing them, but after failing our mission once we were able to choose a different character to play with if we weren’t satisfied with our current conditions. The characters we used for the second round were: Madeleine – Anxiety attacks (me), Marie – Erotomania, Edith – Cannibalism, and Felix – Paranoia. I found this to be a very good combination of characters, especially during combat. During this game our party explored multiple rooms and fought some monsters while trying to find hints and leads on how to complete our mission. During the second round we only visited the rooms where we knew there would be items and passages that we needed to get in order to access other areas. Since we took a lot of notes on the previous round, this was not an issue. 

The hardest part about playing this game was to use all the information we gathered to solve the pentacles puzzle. Even though we took notes on what we deemed important, our group had a hard time figuring out what was missing. This might have happened because while we took notes on a lot of things, we failed to notice the smaller details that ended up being the key to solving the puzzle. This was definitely the longest and most complex game that we have played so far, however it was also the most fun and challenging. Being able to explore on our own accord and slowly putting the pieces of the story together was great. We had a good dynamic and we had fun trying to take different paths than the ones we had used before. 

This game ties into leadership in ways that the other games we played didn’t as much. Because there are many different mechanics and rules in T.I.M.E stories, we needed everyone to be attentive and for communication to be clear and effective. Because of that, each of us took on a leadership role and made sure that the aspect of the game that we were focusing on was taken care of. Note taking, collecting items, choosing the best paths for our group, strategizing which characters would be better together were some of the aspects that were divided between us, and this helped us work together as a well organized team. After playing this game I believe that my family would enjoy playing together because it takes a while and it is very engaging. I think that it could definitely become a regular part of game nights since there are many different scenarios. 

Ladies & Gentlemen Reflection

Last week (March 30th, 2023) our class traveled back in time to the Victorian era with the game Ladies and Gentlemen. There were two roles from which we could pick from – along with an extra role that was only used due to our uneven number of players. The first role was the Gentleman: By playing this role you commit to going to work everyday and making money by fulfilling contracts and selling items. The gentlemen should make as much money as they can to then satisfy their ladies’ wishes at the end of the day. The next role is the Lady: By playing this role you are given a number of shopping choices throughout the day. Your objective is to strategically find the best items and choose the dress and accessories that will make you look the best at the ball (at the end of the game – after six rounds). Once your choices have been made you are to showcase them to your husband (with little to no communication) in the hopes that he will use the money he earned to gift them to you. The extra role is the Courtesan: By playing this role you are a Lady who does not have a husband. Your objective is the same as the other ladies, but you must ask any of the gentlemen for gifts. If you are the best dressed of the ball, the gentleman that gave you the most elegance points (included in the item cards) wins with you. If you are the worst dressed, the gentleman that gave you the least amount of elegance points and his lady lose the game with you. 

The hardest part about playing this game (especially as one of the ladies) was the restriction of communication between partners. Even though the Ladies and the Gentlemen had to work together to win, it was not possible to share our individual strategies, and it seemed like we were playing two completely different games at the same time. In my case, I was looking to buy cheaper items, but to gain elegance points through my servant cards – since I didn’t want to miss the chance of getting items in case my gentleman wasn’t making enough money. Meanwhile, my gentleman was trying to accumulate as much money as he could to spend on the very last round, which I did not know about. Although it was a complex game to play, it was really interesting and fun to figure out. The satirical reference to the Victorian era was clever and done in a way that exposed many gender roles and expectations that have shaped our society. This game can definitely teach some lessons about gender disparity and gender roles, which are important topics to be aware of, especially when it comes to leadership. A good leader can be inclusive and empathetic, and putting yourself in a position that you are normally not in can help you understand someone’s context better. Being able to look at things from different perspectives and adapt accordingly can go a long way. 

In my opinion, I believe that my classmates from WGS courses would enjoy playing this game and discussing its context afterwards. This game can be a good conversation starter about gender roles then and now, and about gender inequality. 

Ultimate Werewolf Reflection

On Janurary 26th 2023, the game Ultimate Werewolf was played in the depths of one of Miami’s most mysterious halls. While this game was new to many of the participants, some of the others held a double edge sword with their expirtise. Individuals such as I have never played such a game as complex as Ultimate Werewolf, but dabbled only simpler versions as a child, like within the game of Mafia. Many were extremely confused at the beggining of the session, but with a well equipt and experienced narrator, confusion metamorphisized into familiarity.

A breif summary of the game play of the session is as follows: In one of the beginning rounds the Witch was killed by the Werewolfs, but before she died, she managed to kill off one of the pup Werewolfs as well. This was an example of risktaking since she took the chance to kill at the very beginning rather than solely questioning who was the Werewolf. This allowed the Werewolfs to choose double the amount of townspeople to elliminate. Eventually the townspeople were able to kill off another Werewolf, which only left one left without their pack. While each one of the towns people tried their best to single out the werewold using their specilized tasks, time seemed to be running out quickly. With only about 6 townspeople left, many strategized that the only way to find the werewolf was through the process of ellimination of sharing their roles. This method did not seem to be beneficial at first, but eventually the last Werewolf standing was able to be picked away from the group, leaving the townspeople victorious (except for the dead ones).

The most challenging aspect of this game was not being familiar with the other players. Usually individuals like myself are very skilled at picking up on both verbal and physical normalities when it comes to one’s self. Since we were all playing with strangers, this made the game much more difficult to pick up on what was suspicious from an individual and what would typically seem normal. With that being said, I think the game more heavily relied so on leadership rather than intuition. It relied on leadership since many were able to speak up and share what stratigies might be helpful to pick out the Werewolf in given situations throughout the game play. An example of this that was breifly explained in the game play summary was the tactic of everyone saying their roles in the hopes to single out the Werewolf. This made the game both challenging and fun as a result.

Personally, I really liked this game, but it would not always be my first choice. There is a time and a place for this game since it is fairly stressful with trying to both defend yourself as well as trying to find and kill the Werewolf. Personally, in a game such as this, I am less likely to take risks since it will probably end in me making the wrong decision. This is also a similar approach to how I would handle a leadership role (make sure that you do it right rather than just to get it over with). One very important aspect of this game is that in order for the game to be enjoyable, every single player has to be into it. If not every player is 100% in. then it will not be a fun game. With that being said, I do not think that this game would be good for my direct family since it is fairly complex. I would suggest this game to my roommate Kendra though. This is because she plays a lot more complex games on her computer as well as DND, and I think that she would find it to be very enjoyable.

T.I.M.E. Stories Week One: A Reflection

T.I.M.E. Stories is reminiscent of an escape room/choose your own adventure game. It is a collaborative game that practically requires you to take notes. One notable thing about the game is how the artwork contributes to the story. One downside to the game is the difficulty in understanding the game before you play. There is a large learning curve right at the beginning while you are trying to set up and learn how to start. However, once you figure the setup out, it really flows smoothly from there on out.

I think the initial setup and how to start playing was the most difficult part of the game for me. Although, another challenging point was deciding where to travel as a group because we would all have to go to the same room all together. I have enjoyed playing collaborative games like Pandemic, Forbidden Desert, and a variety of escape room games with my family. I believe this makes me really appreciate the collaborative aspects of T.I.M.E. Stories.

My group failed because of running out of time units. After this failure, I decided to play a different role. I had initially been the girl with anxiety which had forced me to always go with a partner to different parts of the rooms we were exploring. When I switched roles, I became the bitter old lady with not a lot of heart but some resilience. I did not have many opportunities to compare the roles, but after the first class time spent playing this game, I think I prefer the girl with anxiety.

I think a lot of the leadership aspects that this game highlights were ones we discussed following the week we played Pandemic or Forbidden Island. This game required collaboration as well as an ability to be accountable as an individual in order to make the collaborative game easier overall.

I am looking forward to playing this game during our second week of designated class time. I also believe that my family would really enjoy playing this game together, so I look forward to introducing them to this game at some point. If you like collaborative games or escape rooms, I would highly recommend trying T.I.M.E. Stories at some point.

Two Rooms and a Boom: A Class Reflection

Two Rooms and a Boom is an engaging and entertaining party game. This game has similarities to Werewolf which we played at the beginning of the semester. It requires a lot more involvement as characters are moving between rooms and have a limited amount of time to complete the objective in an attempt to win the game. Different roles in this game included the President and the Bomber, Red spy and Blue spy, Romeo and Juliet, clown and mime, and many more. I would say my favorite role was a spy or the mime because it allowed me to be really observant of other people’s roles. I think I would have done well in the gambler role because of my observation and logic skills. I think these roles are also some of the more difficult roles in the game.

This game exemplifies a variety of ways someone can be a leader. Even though I never held the leader card, I was able to share insight and perspective that also influenced the game. In this way, I felt like I was truly able to lead by example. I also felt like the more outspoken roles and the quieter roles showed the importance of being able to listen to comrades and be a voice for your group.

The hardest part of the game was when there were roles introduced that would force you to switch roles with another player. This was difficult because it made players even warier in sharing their roles with other players which seemed to be a key component of how the game is played. I never ended up switching roles with another player but I also tried to follow cards as they switched so I knew who had what cards.

Another difficult aspect of the game was being unable to see what was happening in the other room. Although, I think this added more to the game and makes it more interesting overall. This aspect of being in two rooms required you to really think about what you were seeing and try to keep track of cards that were entering the other room during the ‘hostage’ exchanges.

I am going to recommend this game to my older brothers because I know they like the game Werewolf. I may also introduce this game to my many cousins who have really enjoyed playing Werewolf in the past. I think this game will be better for some of these younger cousins because they are able to interact more with other people and they have a higher chance of winning on their own. This game is also good because my cousins won’t get upset as easily as they are in the game the whole time rather than having the possibility of being voted out.

This game has been a very good experience for me. I would like to consider how to make this game even more accessible so more people are able to play. Maybe dividing a single room in such a way that there is less walking required. I also wish this game was still being made, but it is available as a print and play which I look forward to using.

Ladies & Gentlemen: A Class Reflection

We played Ladies and Gentlemen in class and discussed the idea of gendered roles in gaming. In this game, you can play as a Lady who shops for items to wear to the ball in order to try to win the game. The gentlemen try to fill contracts to get money and other bonuses in order to purchase the items that the lady presents. There was no communication between the two different roles to see how the game was progressing. This was probably the most difficult part. I also felt like there was no way to judge how well you were actually doing in the game.

I played the gentleman role which was interesting because you had to rush to grab resources in a hurry so that you could fulfill contracts. I found that it was important to look at what kinds of resources were necessary to fulfill the contracts before starting the day. I think I would do better playing this game in the future because I would have a better understanding of how the day worked. I bought all but one item for my lady which was good. I think it would be interesting to play from the other side of the table to experience the decision-making of the lady’s role.

My lady and I ended up coming in second in our game. I thought we did really well for being my first time playing. The pair that won was a little more conniving and sneaky so it made the game a little more intense. I really liked how we were randomly paired up with our partners. I met some new people in the class this way. I would like to take this game and play it with my family. However, we have an odd number of individuals so the game would be slightly different as we would play with the individual who tries to get all of the other gentlemen to buy her clothes.

I noticed some individuals really got into their roles and character personas. I noticed that I struggle with this. I tend to be able to imagine the role and put myself in the situation, but I cannot always act out the role well. It was cool to see people who have more experience with role-playing games, really fulfill their character’s role. I think this would be a good game for people to be introduced to role-playing and I know I have cousins who would enjoy the opportunity to act out their characters. 

Fiasco Part 2: A Reflection

Fiasco Week Two was exciting. I felt like the whole group was more comfortable with the idea of a role-playing game. We discussed the concepts of role-playing versus roll-playing. I thought this brought up some very intriguing points for us to discuss as a class. I saw a little bit of both concepts within our group during the first week whereas this week we leaned more on the role-playing side of things.

Our act two ended up really interesting, each turn took a new turn because of the twist that added a lot of interest. It was unexpected and the outcome was completely opposite of what I thought it would be based purely on the week before. One person from our group ended up having their character killed off. There was honestly a lot more plot and story within Act Two than we dared to add during act one of the first week.

We also discussed the video about living every day like it was day one. This felt reminiscent of how orientation was this summer for me. I was an orientation leader and we had 18 sessions this summer. One thing we really focused on was bringing ourselves into the role as if it was day one. It may not have been our first day but it was someone’s first day and first impression on campus.

I thought about the concepts of gratitude and positivity as well. This really relates to attitude and outlook on life. Personally, I believe these are all really big concepts to grasp but can truly change your life if you think about them and live with them every day. We brought this into how role-playing games give you an option to approach situations with a sense of a new day atmosphere. We talked about how role-playing games give people time and space for understanding different situations. I felt like this topic of new-day attitude was honestly really important yet not talked about frequently in other contexts of my everyday life. Therefore, I am grateful we took the time to discuss this topic as well as how it related to the choices we make during role-playing games.

Fiasco Part 1: A Reflection

Week one of Fiasco was interesting indeed! This is a role-playing game with not a lot of rules that you have to follow. It is pretty flexible and allows you to kind of structure the plot of the game however you want. I felt like our game went slow and there was not a whole lot of development. However, we also had tension within the pace of the game as the time went by pretty fast. I would contribute to us having fun as the phrase “time flies when you are having fun” really shows. The toughest part for me was that people created other names for their characters. This was an additional challenge as I was just learning everyone’s real names.

The last time I played a role-playing game was during the Pandemic. I attempted to play Dungeons and Dragons with my older brothers and some of their college friends; however, we were also playing virtually, I believe over Discord. This made the experience less enjoyable for me because it felt like I was playing mostly with people I did not know and I was physically separated from the group play. This distancing was difficult for me; therefore, Fiasco has been such a wonderful and improved experience so far.

We started playing Boomtown and got through the twist. We were not able to start Act 2 yet but were able to start planning. I think people had a lot of good ideas for the plot and storyline of the game. I felt like I was not able to get my ideas into action as much. Maybe I am a little too willing to let others control the scene. By the end of the story, I felt like I was going to be pinned for the “murder” my “cousin” and I was trying to get away with (this is in the specific context of our characters and character details).

I noticed how I was trying to be more sneaky and menacing in the game than I am in real life. I am a rule follower in real life, so the idea of even trying to pin a big event on someone else or just trying to divert attention from myself was more difficult. I also noticed that I laugh in different situations when I do not always know what emotional reaction I should have in that situation. Therefore, it became difficult to keep a straight face and serious demeanor during the story. This made it difficult to stay in character and achieve my desired outcome in certain events.

So far I have seen leadership come out with the cooperation of the group in creating the story and deciding what happens. I have also seen how some individuals have leadership qualities that take charge of the events that occur. I felt like my calm and patient approach to leading fell to the wayside and was not as effective in this fast-paced context with a limited amount of time to make things happen. This also came out when people decided if they would set the scene or if they would resolve the situation. This choice kind of helped shows how we all would approach different situations as leaders.

Overall, I am liking Fiasco so far. I am going to recommend this game to my brothers but more specifically the one in college who enjoys playing Dungeons and Dragons. I think he would have a fun time playing this game with some of his friends. I also think the role-playing game is something that people should experience or give a second chance to and experience again because it does highlight a lot about one’s personality and how they approach life as well as give individuals a chance to explore different scenarios they might not typically encounter.

Mysterium Reflection

The game we played in class was Mysterium. This has been my favorite game so far. I played as one of the psychics. I really enjoyed trying to figure out what the ghost was thinking about when they selected the vision cards. Often the things that stood out in the vision cards to me was not what they had intended to stand. This meant that I had the challenge of trying to think like the ghost. I think this game would be really fun with my family, as we all know each so well that I think it would be interesting to see if we can better understand what the ghost is trying to communicate.

There were two things I found to be the hardest parts of this game. One was since our group members did not know each other that well, it was hard for us to figure what the ghost was telling us. The other thing I found to be difficult was understanding the rules. For whatever reason, when I first read the rulebook, I was confused. However, after watching the video I found it to be easier to understand.

One of the leadership concepts that I feel this game exemplifies is “get off the dance floor and onto the balcony”. During the game, the ghost could not talk. This meant that once they handed out the vision cards, the outcome was out of their control. Once they stepped back after giving out the cards, they had to see if we choose what they meant for us to. If we did not they needed to re-evaluate how they were going about the situation and make changes for the next set of vision cards.