Middlegrounds between Videogames and Boardgames.

It's been some months that the 8th edition of Warhammer 40k it's out. The first time I read the rules I was surprised by the amount of abstraction and simplification, it was clear that the process that led to the new rules was close to the one we use to design videogames. It's easy for somebody that design video games to end up design board games too (and viceversa), many of the basic are shared by the two, but in the latest years, the gap is progressively closing...

The paper prototype of a videogame is often a boardgame.
What boardgames learned?

If you regularly played board games in the later years there is something that you may have involuntarily noticed, and in the last nostalgic raptus that hit you, you may have found yourself saying: "I like this game, but it's too simple". If you are reading this, chances are that you know what a D20 is and you may have played some Dungeons & Dragons sections. Once we were used to gigantic rulebooks describing in dept even the simplest rule of the game. If it was a standard for boardgame, videogames were never able to delve too much into complex rules without being labeled as Role Playing / Strategy Games. The real-time factor for a videogame is key and shooting a demon in Doom is as simple as clicking a mouse. Through the years it became clear that the focus of a game should rely on what the player can do, not how. There are still many joys to be found in so-called "descriptive" rules, but forwarding back to 8th edition this new way of interpreting rules become the inspiration for one of the current protagonists of the wargaming scene: 10 pages are enough to describe the whole game without hurting its competitive nature. In the era of internet, a complex game can be broken apart by few experts and fed back into some build/meta to the rest of the player, complex systems are not only hard but they are becoming unnecessary, both on the board and in the video.

He changed so much from 7th, but it still feels the same.
What videogames learned?

The simplicity of the video game entered the boardgames world, but what videogames learned from boardgames? Accessibility, time-wise. The videogame was always a massive experience to endure, but today it's easy to find games that rely only on their rules, gave away any kind of narrative and ask only for minutes of our time, not hours. Exactly as if you play a Battleship match with a friend, playing a modern roguelike is like opening a box taking out the pieces to immediately start playing a new game that feels fresh as the first one. But the biggest lesson videogames learned from senpai is the social aspect. Offcourse videogames went online as soon as the could, but an online contender is often used just as a really good (or bad) AI to put inside the pawns of the game. By playing D.Va in Overwatch, we behave as the character, even two players with different playstyles will end up playing similarly with D.Va. Games like PUBG or Fortnite add a new layer: the player is able to behave outside of the character he/she is interpreting, the decision-making ability of the player has a bigger role in the game than the virtual character. This sandbox nature comes directly from social deduction games, the various Werewolf you may have played.

So, it's easy to say that the two worlds are slowly colliding, and even if they will never touch, it's going to be progressively easier to feel like you are playing a videogame on a board, or playing a boardgame on a screen, as the aim of a game designer is to let you enjoy your time, no matter how.