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.
So I had a chance to play Camel Up last night, and enjoyed it a lot! Coup was also played, during which I tried the infinite Ambassador strategy after making a crucial and damaging error early-on and lost terribly while having a grand time.
However, as I attempted to demonstrate the core ship-building aspect of Boatbuilders, a crucial problem emerged: The table was a laquered smooth wood, and there was a gentle but steady AC vent overhead that was providing an almost-unnoticed breeze.
It was impossible to even get the base set up, let alone anything else.
This is a problem; while I knew breezes and smooth surfaces would be an issue, I hadn’t realized just how bad they could be compared to my relatively-controlled test environment at home. I think the game can be rescued by including 2-4 card clips in the set, and let players adjust how many they used depending on desired difficulty, but the problem is that will immediately bring us outside the scope for the limitations of the cards-only design Button Shy had asked for. So, while I am definitely wanting to hold onto Boatbuilders as a fun, light “pouch”* game, we’ll need to do a redesign asap for a new cards-only wallet game.
*In the vein of games such as Love Letter, Lost Legacy, and Cypher. Mostly just 18ish cards, and maybe a half-dozen small unobtrusive components.
The designing will begin under the cut!
Apologies for missing the post on Friday regarding updates to current game projects. So, I’m adding this as a footnote above the Monday Game design.
While I know I said previously that I’d be working on Mistgore, I’ve revised that to be Ruin. I think Ruin has a ton of potential, but it needs playtesting, My brother, who I’ll be seeing over the holiday break period, is an avid Magic the Gathering player and should form an ideal playtester to bounce ideas off of to try and balance the game in a competitive fashion.
Overall, I’ve completed most of the list of changes to the game. Ability triggers are gone, and there’s a much larger array of power values. Unit counts have dropped, so there’s theoretically more unique units. Coin cards have been added, which kind of mess up the overall card counts but should make for a really cool setup for game pacing and risk/reward for player resources. Overall, a lot has changed, and I’m super excited about it all and how it’s shaping up moving forward.
All righty, onwards to the Monday Game!
Another update, to give a bit more information on the playtest-driven changes in RUIN. The next section of The Storyteller will be posted tonight, and if you already read the first part, you might want to check again as I updated it and lengthened it to a full 10 pages written thus far.
Whoo boy, time to delve into the game that’s basically consumed my every free minute for the past couple weeks.
So, the TL;DR version:
Star Realms is incredibly good, incredibly strategic, and you should have at least 1 copy on your shelf, if not 3+. It’s $15, so it should be your next game purchase if you don’t have it yet.
Soooo, I like it. A lot.
So a few months back I got back into Magic the Gathering, getting revved up and attending the Theros release stuff, and getting super-excited I had a deck with two Abhorrent Overlords (Even though I built the rest of the deck like crap and won diddly). While I have fallen off of the wagon in the intervening months due to the holidays and a busy work and home life, something I really, really like about Magic is the system for Drafting.