Tangent: Kambanchi and Buystarter

So in an effort to try and become more organized and structured in my game design life, I’ve recently started using Google Keep as my web homepage, encouraging me to finally keep to-do lists and such. While I’ve theoretically had a to-do list as a recurring Outlook reminder, and Outlook has a great Task functionality, a recent spate of listening to the Board Game Design Lab podcasts (fantastic website and series, btw!) encouraged me to not only do this, but to use a psychology trick in the process: putting lots of small, almost effortless tasks on the list, so tackling the occasional big object feels like a continuation of my momentum rather than trying to roll the boulder up the hill from scratch.

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It is sooo much easier to complete the last task on a list of 20, then to complete that task all by itself. True story.

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Brief Update for Green-Circuit Mercs

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Just finished tweaking the cardset, and not a ton to elaborate on beyond what was touched on last week. Basically the changes made were:

  • Fixed imbalances with player # vs Threat, so now it should be a reasonably achievable goal rather than a hopeless task
  • Swung the points for Techs and Plants upwards, so you’re only getting an average net loss on the first round of cards. The abilities also got a very, very healthy injection of power and utility, so it should now feel like using an ability is a powerful thing, instead of an annoying and nigh-worthless bonus
  • Each of the 4 Bidding decks is now built around a heroic theme: Trickster, Highguard, Biosmith, and Cyborg. They focus on, respectively, losing bids, winning bids, Plant cards, and Tech cards. Hopefully this should add more layers of nuanced choice, and add some interesting strategies for play in addition to kicking the door open for more hero Bidding decks in the future.

The new version of the cardset is here, and the updated rules are here.

Going to be trying it out tomorrow, along with the prototype for Boatbuilders; I’ve got a very good feeling Boatbuilders will be a fairly good hit with not a ton of changes needed, but I definitely want to polish the dickens out of it before marking it off as finished.

 

Friday Update: Green-Circuit Mercs Deadlines

Got a chance to do some playtesting of Green-Circuit Mercs yesterday, and while the feedback was very valuable, it was clear there’s a lot of changes and a lot of balance needed before the game is ready for publication.

As the deadline for this is in less than a week, unfortunately I don’t think its possible to make these changes and playtest the revisions in a timely fashion to get it done and ready to go; that’s the downside to having only once/twice-a-week opportunities for game playtesting, something I’ll touch on in the closing thoughts. Still, several players expressed interest in playing/buying a final version of the game, and I’d rather revise it until it’s a solid hit concept rather than generate a bunch of assets and rush the publication of a game I know isn’t mechanically sound just to hit the contest deadline.

Revising our schedule to account for this, we get:

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The detailed breakdown of the feedback and my thoughts/changes on them is below the cut!

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Game Design Contest: Preparing the Wallet Games for Playtesting

So, continuing from my designs for Boatbuilders and Mamluki on Wednesday, I’m continuing that design so I can get some card decks ready to use off of Paperize.

First, though, the most important part of any game design: the logo! (courtesy of CoolText) I’ve always found having a logo for a game gets me 100% more invested into seeing it through, even if the logo ends up being discarded en route to the final iteration of a game.

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These might undergo changes/improvements later, but they’re plenty good enough for now. Onwards to the rule/card designs!

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Game Design Contest: Boatbuilders and Mamluki

As I had posted yesterday, there’s a new board game contest out: Button Shy Wallet Game Contest, with submissions due by April 23rd. Today I’ll be hammering out a rough idea outline for the game, but with playtests focusing on Green-Circuit Mercs in the immediate future.

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The prizes aren’t amazing, but in my current situation exposure is far more valuable than an extra hundred bucks

The parameters of the overall contest are as follows:

There will be 2 different categories you may enter, using the components listed for each.

Wallet Game

  1. 12-18 Cards (Must be Standard Poker Size)
  2. Vinyl Wallet
  3. Score Paper/Pen
  4. Rules (Note: We print on a small 8 panel rules sheet. Take a look at any of our previous games for an example of how much room we’re working with)

Wallet Game Plus

 

  1. 12-18 Cards (Must be Standard Poker Size)
  2. Up to 10 coins* to be used as tokens, markers, etc
  3. Vinyl Wallet
  4. Score Paper/Pen
  5. Rules (Note: We print on a small 8 panel rules sheet. Take a look at any of our previous games for an example of how much room we’re working with)

*Coins: 10 max. Can be up to 4 different denominations (example US penny, nickel, quarter and dime). You may also use heads or tails.

 

We can submit up to one game per category, but I think we’ll just focus on one or the other. As always, Boardgamizer will be used for parameter generation after the break!

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