Borrowing from the idea of the Pluspora Check-in get some tabletop conversation going. If you have any questions that you want to get on the list to be asked, let me know. Also, if you'd like to be added or taken off the list of participants, let me know.
Are there any game mechanics that you love to see in games, and will give you a favorable view of the game before you even start to try it?
I love Fate Core, Powered by the Apocalypse and Gumshoe, and am guaranteed to at least take a look at a new project if it has that as the foundation.
I like Fate, but PbtA and GUMSHOE both leave me utterly cold, and I will avoid projects that use them. (Honourable exception: The Fall of Delta Green, which I bought for use as a sourcebook rather than a game system.)
Specific mechanics that fire me up: - Skill-based systems - Degree-of-success systems - Using dice (like Call of Cthulhu 7th edition's bonus and penalty dice, or D&D 5th edition's advantage and disadvantage) instead of tracking niggly modifiers - Marvel Heroic Roleplaying-style initiative - Assistance/help from other PCs as a normal part of making a roll - Ability to share successes across the party (as in The One Ring)
Engine building, such as in deck-building games and many worker placement games.
Mechanics I haven't seen much elsewhere besides their origins, but really like and expect to make use of myself:
* Effort mechanic from Kevin Crawford's Godbound. * AGE-style stunt die: it comes up too often to feel like a critical (though you can use it for extra damage or a bonus attack), but often enough to give you some cool options fairly regularly, without being able to bank on them.
One mechanic that I am really drawn to is auction/bidding. This mechanic got me hooked on Power Grid which is the first game I have played with an auction (not counting Monopoly as no one plays it properly). I love this mechanic because it allows you to directly play against your opponents. It's fun when more than one person is trying to bid on something. Sometimes, you bid because you know you can make someone pay more. In Ra, this happens a lot because you know someone after you really wants a tile and you know you can just bid to make that person bid higher.
I love games with multiple paths to victory where you have a number of action paths and determining the best one is often very tactical with you having to adopt your play based on what the other players are doing.
Basically I don't think of point salad as a derogatory term.