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megajester
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #30 on: Nov 15th, 2011, 8:15am »
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I suppose the horse could be solved by just making it a bit more "horsey" like a chess knight. The camel is supposed to be a bactrian camel's double hump, and the dog is supposed to be howling. I'm just having trouble coming up with distinctive, abstract, yet logical symbols.
« Last Edit: Nov 15th, 2011, 8:17am by megajester » IP Logged

Eggman
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #31 on: Nov 15th, 2011, 5:35pm »
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Here's my stab...for my own purposes, I was trying for something that could scale very small (probably need more separation in the rabbit ears for that, though).
 
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Fritzlein
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #32 on: Nov 15th, 2011, 5:58pm »
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I like them!  Especially the sheep and the satan...  Wink
 
Seriously, for small-scale portrayal we need much caricature and little detail, as all of these designs are achieving.
« Last Edit: Nov 16th, 2011, 12:26am by Fritzlein » IP Logged

aaaa
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #33 on: Nov 15th, 2011, 5:59pm »
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on Nov 15th, 2011, 5:58pm, Fritzlein wrote:
I like them!  Especially the sheep and the satan...  Wink

No opinion about the bomb?
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ocmiente
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #34 on: Nov 15th, 2011, 11:58pm »
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Princess Leia?
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Eggman
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #35 on: Nov 24th, 2011, 1:20pm »
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Alright wise-guys. Here's another try along with an alternate set featuring a Harry Potter camel and a Rabbit of Caerbannog.
 
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Hippo
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #36 on: Nov 24th, 2011, 3:19pm »
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When I was thinking with paper and pencil during my last postal, I was using ABDEFG abdefg to denote the Gold/Silver pieces. (Actually I have not used Gg as the camels were already captured). Actually it was much easier for me to think in alphabet rather than translating from letters to animals and to their relative power ...
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leo
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #37 on: Dec 9th, 2011, 4:12am »
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Thinking about mixing Megajester's "font" with Eggman's glowing eyes...
 
Ha, I don't think I ever mentioned it except on the chatroom but here's my very old take at abstraction, it's from 2002:
 
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minderbinder
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #38 on: Apr 26th, 2012, 3:50am »
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on Dec 9th, 2011, 4:12am, leo wrote:
Thinking about mixing Megajester's "font" with Eggman's glowing eyes...
 
Ha, I don't think I ever mentioned it except on the chatroom but here's my very old take at abstraction, it's from 2002:
 

 
I like it! Maybe it's just my preference for simple and abstract over thematic, but there's a certain elegant simplicity about it. In particular I've never felt that a game like Arimaa needed a theme (with apologies to the BGG people, I feel that the sumo-theme is a bit ridiculous... as far as I'm concerned, the theme of Arimaa is "this is a fascinating and deep abstract strategy game"). I might try to make my own abstract set based on this idea - with flat circular pieces (I've never been good at craft, so I'm gonna stick with simple and easy)
« Last Edit: Apr 26th, 2012, 3:51am by minderbinder » IP Logged
Katsunami
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #39 on: Apr 26th, 2012, 9:39am »
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It can even be said that such an abstract appearance of the game could actually add to it's mystique. Look at Go: it looks so very simple, but it's so very difficult.
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omar
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #40 on: Apr 28th, 2012, 1:22pm »
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That's pretty cool Leo. I also considered using shapes, but I thought the animals would be more appealing to kids. With shapes I used a triangle for the weakest piece. This also helped to emphasis that it could only move forward left and right and show which side they are moving towards. The size of the triangle was smaller than any other shape. The next stronger piece was a square, slightly larger than the triangle, then a slightly larger pentagon and so on with the strongest piece being a big circle. I think I also considered some other shape variations also, I don't remember the details right now.
 
The sumo theme was actually added recently; maybe about a year ago. The animal theme helped to make it easier to see the strength hierarchy. In fact even using just words and not figures it is sufficient. You wouldn't know that a triangle is weaker than a square without seeing the figure. The sumo theme helps to remove the abstraction from the rules and makes them more intuitive and easier to visualize; and even makes it more believable. It was also done in a way that kept is backwards compatible with the original animal theme. With the sumo theme we can still talk about elephants taking camels hostage. Everything that we've said and done using the animal theme is not negated by adding the sumo layer. Also the sumo theme was added after I had played hundreds of games and thought that Arimaa did feel a lot like wrestling. Chess to me feels a lot like a sword fight and the medieval army theme fits it just right.
 
It's true that abstract games don't really need a theme, but if the theme helps to make the rules more intuitive then why not use it.
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Laci
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #41 on: May 13th, 2013, 4:13pm »
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I myself really like the idea of 'more appealing to kids'. I was teaching my (currently 6 years old) sister playing chess and checkers, but usually although I think she was eager to learn them in the beginning she didn't like it during the process.
When it came to Arimaa though, I printed the animal pieces of Marcus Morgan in order to make the game more exciting, and I believe it did make a change. It's true Arimaa's rules are also easier than of chess, and she is also older than the time I was teaching her chess so there are other reasons for making a better progress, but nonetheless I think by the eagerness of her wanting to play games that the idea of animals pushing and pulling each other into traps is indeed interesting to kids.
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omar
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #42 on: May 17th, 2013, 8:31am »
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Wow, that's great. Thanks for sharing that with us.
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mattj256
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #43 on: May 20th, 2013, 1:34am »
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on May 13th, 2013, 4:13pm, Laci wrote:
the idea of animals pushing and pulling each other into traps is indeed interesting to kids.

I think that in written materials (books and online) there is room for a more abstract representation of the pieces.  And I could imagine adults enjoying a physical abstract set, but I agree with Laci that a real-animal physical set is best for kids.
 
One issue with the real-animal pieces is that in written materials they don't shrink well.  The Wikipedia page on Chess has diagrams that are much smaller than ours, and they can do that because the chess pieces are really icons.
 

These are some images I found for the board game Stratego.  As you can see, one representation is with all pieces except for bombs represented as numbers.  The actual playing pieces have both a picture and a small number.  Either of these could be done for written Arimaa material.
 

 
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odin73
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Re: Abstract set concept
« Reply #44 on: May 20th, 2013, 4:41am »
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A colleague (he introduced me into Arimaa) produced a home-made set of small spheres of different size and number per piece. That set is very playable, IŽll try to take and post a photo in the next time.
 
A big big plus for the animal theme has a simple reason: How to talk about a game when the pieces consist of abstract symbols? How would you talk about rabbit pulling, elephant-horse attack, camel hostage, horse for dog trade? I donŽt think that "small triangle", "big bright square" vs. "medium dark square" etc. would be very funny for a discussion about a position. Huh
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