For me it is kinda like a movie without a theme.
There are several abstract games without any theme, and they are just not for me. You will not find me playing chess.
It is just so cool to imagine that you are running a circus where you have to hire artists, helpers, determine ticket prices and similar (Drum Roll). It is cool to imagine that you are moving your forces to intercept a german squad (Memoir 44), or to side with the Norse gods during Ragnarok to find out if you chose the right side (Asgard).
For me it gives the board game character and it gives it purpose. It is not just a game where you move pieces around on some circles to take some other wooden pieces into first the outer circle and then the inner circle; I imagine I run that gallery, and I am discovering artists, interacting with celebrities on the international art market or do radio interviews to promote my favorite artist so I can score the most when selling the art piece (The Gallerist).
Some people know how to see through that – I cannot.
Imagine having to save the world from three potential Pandemics! It does not become more powerful than that (Pandemic).
When saying I always go for theme, well that is not entirely true. I really like to play Backgammon (and I truly suck at that game), I also enjoy a game of Crocinole very much. They are the exceptions that confirm the rule.
YOU SHALL NOT PA…
Famous last words: My last soldier seconds before he was crushed by a tank defending a bridge…
I have been an assassin hunting other assassins and my targets while having to evade the police (10′ to kill). Imagine the story and interaction you can get out of having to avoid being detected as a werewolf (One Night Ultimate Werewolf).
Does it show a lack of imagination? Or does it show an ability to really get into the theme? I would guess that it differs based on who you ask 🙂
Next game – controlling a bloodthirsty football team of orcs plowing down the enemies on the field (Blood Bowl Team Manager).
See you out there on the field.