November Writing Challenge Day 13: Time Travel

I’m blogging every day this month. Some will be game-related, but this challenge is different than my most recent play-a-game-and-blog-about-it challenge. I’m writing a single post every day: no topic guidelines, with some posts being a collection of random thoughts. Click here to read yesterday’s post.

I’ve got a secret: I didn’t write a blog post yesterday. Sure, if you check the date November 12, 2019, you’ll see I wrote about something delicious, but this was a case of Internet Magic. I wrote that post about an hour ago and back-dated it so my Post Every Day in November Challenge could live on. Yes!

This small bit of Internet time travel got me thinking about time traveling while playing board games. With my main group, we’re all easy going and like to win, but not to the point where we won’t let someone take back a move, especially if the next player hasn’t gone yet.

If an action was caused by a missed rule, then we try to retcon moves back to when the rule was missed. If we’re not too far along, then we’ll just start the game over, but if not, then we’ll just finish the game with the wrong rule and play correctly next time.

So this is our version of traveling back in time during game night. Recently, though, a buddy of mine was gaming with someone else I know and that person took back a few of his previous moves during his turn before taking his current turn (I think this was during a game of Anachrony or Trickerion). I couldn’t believe he did that and I couldn’t believe my friend didn’t say anything.

Again, we’re pretty laid back, but in heavier games we’re a bit more by-the-book since your actions affect a lot more during the game. It’s like the poker games I used to play in regularly: things that were okay at a home game were definitely not okay at the casino.

I’m definitely not a hardcore rules lawyer, though. I’m all about the experience and if a missed rule would ruin the experience, then we’ll figure out a way to fix it. But most of the time I’m willing to roll with a mistake or a take-back or two, as long as things keep moving. While I want to make sure we play correctly, I’d rather not devote time to reading the rulebook while we’re playing since it takes away time from the next game we could be playing.

Still, whenever I play a game of Twilight Imperium, we do have the “Everyone Gets One” do-over, as long as the next player hasn’t gone yet. We’re playing games, which are supposed to be fun, so a friendly do-over is well within reason. Just like when you’re trying to blog every day in November.