"I like the skeuomorphism of playing cards in video games because they instantly communicate aspects of chance and probability, as well as common affordances like 'drag to play' or discard. They are also able to represent heterogeneous actions. Had the game been a top-down tycoon game, things like public transportation, job training, or insulation retrofits would have been more difficult to visualize as objects you drop on a map. [...] [A]nother design problem addressed by the deck-building gameplay: instead of choosing an action and then choosing where to apply it, the action is already chosen for you, so your choice is about where and not what."
"The reason that black box mechanics are so dicey outside of the casino is that it’s not always clear that a player has opted into the metagame, or that they are qualified to give consent. Those qualifications are, basically, maturity and intelligence, specifically with regard to the mechanics of the game. Any repeatable real-money transaction, such as a loot box, breaks the magic circle and turns every armchair into a swimming pool."