Back to BGDG

After being sick and Christmas and such things, I finally got back to a BGDG meeting. We played "The Citadel of Madness" with two of Daniel's ideas applied. The two ideas were: removing rounds in favor of "refreshing" periodically, and removing "madness" in favor of "device levels"
Here are my notes [comments], and things that I plan on trying out in the immediate future: 1 color cards are no longer nearly as good - play a card for both energy? The low cost 4 type cost room cards might be too easy to complete - perhaps reduce their value. Time is still confusing 1 action per turn is good - it speeds up the game. Secret rooms? Possible ways to make the game have take that element [as an aside, I don't really want to add that type of play, but I am faithfully typing up these note, so I am recording them here] wipe out one/multiple rooms as an action so that other players cannot score them, and swap point cards with other players. Converters:…

Another feedback braindump.

I met with Daniel Peterson (of Mayday games) to show him some of my games. He was not impressed with any of them. Though that was true, we still had an interesting conversation, and I gained some good insight into what Mayday wants. I think it increasingly unlikely that I will ever get a game published by Mayday, because I enjoy a lot more calculation, accounting, and heavy, repeated planning than they want in a game.

The biggest take home was that I should be designing games for ADHD players, and that the math and accounting all has to happen in a very subtle way to be palatable to players. That being said, I have also determined that if Berrett likes a game, then it is possible that Mayday would like it too.

Here are my notes from the meeting.

The Madness Place:
madness should be integrated into other costs
high level machines should cost more to build
all cards should be level 2, and have the ability to level up (taking actions and or cards and or something)
perhaps tech tree your …

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I submitted Grab the Loot! to DV Giochi this week. I was originally preparing the game for Mayday games, but as I got to know Daniel better, I am not so sure it will fit with the direction that Mayday is going. Grab the Loot! definitely seems like something DV Giochi would like.

I haven't yet finished up with Age of Vikings, however I have been making good strides in Jurassic Universe. My wife and I played a game and talked through some major changes last night. I think it should balance the game nicely. I have also been using math to make the number of cards more correct, and have been toying with re-adding the tech deck.

Micronesia is currently on the back burner, I have been devoting its time to a Chronicles of Amber game currently in a really early stage. The game started when I listened to a podcast by Jason Tagmire, which reminded me of a "hell ride" from the Amber universe. The game is not really appropriate for Button Shy games, so Jason probably didn't help …

Jurassic Space again

The gorilla game is moving along. Rea likes it, so we have played a few games (without a traitor, however). We also played two games at work, and it was well received. The players liked the traitor mechanic. The bad guy might be too powerful, because he won handily, but I can always modify the setup in order to weaken him.

Two players were QA, and as such, they came up with all sorts of interesting interpretations of the rules. I need to specifically say that you cannot lay the gorilla down flat on the table when you are loading it up with other animals.

They also showed the need to come up with a timer to stop someone from taking way too long setting up their turn. They would certainly play the game again, and I am definitely going to continue working on it.

I have also been preparing Age of Vikings for submission to a publisher. I finally have a copy of it assembled again. My last copy was consumed in the Iludo game design competition. When the game won 2nd place, one of the stipulat…

I have a lot of things going on

With the new year, there have been tons of things happening.

I have submitted two games to the Cardboard Edison this year: The Citadel of Madness, and Grab the Loot. The feedback that I got from them was immensely helpful last year, so I am eagerly anticipating this year's results.

I also received a large package of board game parts (which I ordered) in the mail. The most exciting parts was the blue gorilla meeple. I have designed a dexterity game based on it (for the January 24 hour game design contest). It is called "Where there's gorillas there's hope". It is fairly simple, and has a traitor mechanic. When I finally get over this cold, I will certainly bring it to work, and see how the guys like it.

I also have been thinking about the 9 card design contest (I never intended to make a game for it, but one just arrived in my brain yesterday, and it is a really interesting idea. Perhaps you will hear more about it in future posts).

The Icon creation thread has ex…


The small island game is getting out of hand. I played a second game of it last night, and both players found highly lucrative strategies. One of the strategies snowballed in a really fun way, the other was degenerate, and I am putting in a fix for it. The snowbally one was just crazy awesome.
Here is the end state:

The right player found one stupid trick to gain 6-12 points a turn (Hint: it was 2x exploring every turn and then buying points once he had 30 goods). It only involved 2 specific cards and having three or more workers, so it was pretty bad.

The left player stacked his abilities up until he could labor to: draw 10 cards, settle an island, tuck 3 cards for free, gain a free worker, and gain a point. This net him about 5 points a turn, but on a really good turn he could get 12 points. His strategy reached fruition slightly quicker, and was snowballing faster, so he would have won had he not drawn the entire deck and ended the game early.

It felt like a wild engine building g…

Of a small island game.

I have  been working on a new island themed card game recently. It currently has 72 cards (2 decks), 5 mats, and 9 tokens. Compared to Polynesia's 195 cards (6 decks), 7 mats, and 19 tokens, it seems like a decently smaller game. I have been considering calling it Micronesia, just to call that fact out, however it isn't really related to Polynesia, so I am a little bit hesitant to do so.

I have decided on some basic rules and played a solo game. It is playable, but not balanced. It remains to be seen if other people will find it fun, however I found it to be an interesting exercise. I felt sorry for my right hand player, because, although he tried a few different strategies, he just couldn't compete with the left player who got a good engine set up pretty early in the game and just raked in the points for the rest of the game.

The ending score was 52 to 36. I don't like that. I think that a player that is building up their engine for longer should have a distinct advan…