The strange joy of failure in Pandemic

Whenever I get the chance to speak to strategy game designers, I always ask them about victory conditions. What's the best way - the right way - to let a player bring to a close a game that may have eaten up an entire weekend?

Strategy designers tend to be ceaselessly honest and self-critical, and they'll often admit that there is no right way where victory is concerned, just a series of wrong ways that all contain a certain distinct merit. If you look at Civilization, for example, the...

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