I've seen a series of question posted on strategy tips for various kinds of poker:

These questions are formulaic and very broad. You could fit any game in there, and get a new question. They don't provide much information on what is being asked about; whole books have been written on poker strategy, so you're not going to be able to fit anything useful into an answer, other than perhaps referring to a book. They don't give a very good picture of where the questioner is coming from; is he an experienced player who wants to learn tips for a new variant, or a beginner who wants know where to start?

These types of questions could be much better answered by someone simply writing strategy guides for these games, either as books or online. I think they are too broad and without enough specific information to provide a good answer.

Should we close all of this type of question? What if someone asked such a question for a more obscure game, which didn't necessarily have good resources available yet?

edit to add: Here's an example of the same type of question for a more niche game. Still seems a bit broad, though this one I'm less sure on:

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I don't have an opinion about it yet but the problem is not about lack of good resources. Impossible questions are bad, but hard to answer questions is good. BCG.SE will be great if it has the unique answer available to question. –  bigown Oct 20 '10 at 18:54
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You only mean broad questions like "what's the best strategy for game X", not "what's the best strategy for doing X at point Y in game Z", right? I suspect we're going to have quite a lot of the latter, based on the gaming SE –  Michael Mrozek Oct 20 '10 at 18:54
    
@bigown Do you really think that these questions are answerable in the context of StackExchange? I don't think it's a matter of lack of resources, I think it's a question of whether the medium is appropriate for this type of question. Especially given this whole set of questions; for describing poker strategies, it's likely to be good to describe strategies that apply to all games, and then call out differences in individual variants, but with these separate questions you can't really do that. –  Brian Campbell Oct 20 '10 at 18:57
    
@Michael Absolutely. "What's the best strategy for doing X at point Y in game Z" is just the right level of specificity, and a great question for this SE. I'm just talking about "what are the best strategies for this entire game" questions. –  Brian Campbell Oct 20 '10 at 18:58
    
I don't know, community will decide this, I have arguments to both sides. Some of these questions has a pretty consensus about what is good. I am above the fence yet. I will wait for more opinions. We have a good discussion here. –  bigown Oct 20 '10 at 19:27
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5 Answers

These questions are too broad. "What are some strategies for this entire game" just isn't going to result in a worthwhile answer. Questions about specific strategies "What's the best strategy for doing X at point Y in game Z" are great (thank you Brian Campbell).

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Argh, that Dominion one is so borderline. There are general deck strategies that you can learn and use regardless of set, but the question is still so broad... I'm torn. –  lilserf Oct 20 '10 at 21:00
    
I have only downvoted 4 or so posts on all stackexchange sites period. And I even have the gold electorate badge on stackoverflow. Sorry, I just disagree with this enough to downvote it. –  John Robertson Jan 31 at 7:59
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The only exception I'd have to this is a question like "what grand strategy do you prefer in [game X]?" - for example where [game X] is a monster wargame like World in Flames. I suppose even there, the question should be "what grand strategy do you recommend when playing Germany in World in Flames" (incidentally, my answer for that would be Gib/Med/Barb'42 to use the conventional syntax amongst wiffers).

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I would say that is more specific than "what are the strategies for [Game X]?", especially if you specify which position you're playing. In games with a substantial meta-game aspect (which overall strategy you choose depending on which your opponents are likely to choose), asking about large-scale strategies might be reasonable and not too broad. For wargames specifically, I think (though I don't do much wargamming myself) it's relatively common for an entire game or scenario to count as a specific situation than for a more abstract game like Poker. –  Brian Campbell Oct 20 '10 at 21:16
    
Based on the answers coming up, I think this is what the Dominion question is becoming. I like it, and find it useful. How can we encourage more of that? –  Jadasc Oct 21 '10 at 11:57
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Instead of asking if you should vote to close, go ahead and vote to close topics that you think don't belong.

Perhaps 4 people will agree with you. Over time, this will build a consensus better than what can be determined here on meta I think.

If we repeatedly get questions closed and then reopened, then a more detailed discussion about the question on meta is warranted IMHO.

From the subjects, those all sound closable to me. Checking 'em out individually now.

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I did in fact vote to close those, and added a brief comment why; but then I decided it might be good to have a meta-thread for discussing that kind of question, so we have something to refer to when it comes up in the future, and so I can give a longer explanation for why I voted to close than can fit into a comment. –  Brian Campbell Oct 20 '10 at 19:47
    
@Brian - works for me. They have 2 votes each now :) –  Pat Ludwig Oct 20 '10 at 19:48
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I think it would depend on the answerability of the question. If it's vague/opinion-based (such as the "what are good strategy tips" example), then no. But if it's, say, "Which of these two cards would be more effective in this situation", then there is probably a clearly definable answer.

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NO, we should allow strategy questions, as that is a major part of boardgames. This site should be the place that people come to look for strategies for their favorite games. If we aren't going to allow strategies, we might as well rename the site Board and Card Game Rules, since that will be the only topic left.

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This question was not about whether we should allow strategy questions in general. It was whether we should allow broad questions like "what are some good strategy tips for X game". Such questions are not a good fit for StackExchange's Q&A format, where it is expected that questions cover a single answerable topic and there is some way to determine if an answer is right. So, questions like "What move should I make in this position?" may be appropriate, or "in what circumstance would you use this card", but a general question asking about strategy tips for an entire game would be inappropriate. –  Brian Campbell Jan 5 at 21:43
    
Excellent point. Frankly, disturbing that it was downvoted at all. Broad descriptions of general strategies are still a long ways from the actual implementation details for any game worth playing. They are simply the beginning of a road to greater understanding of the game. –  John Robertson Feb 16 at 8:36
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