Apparently I’m bad at twitter and have to write everything in long essay format. This is probably true, but for practice let’s try getting some thoughts down in less than a bajillion words. I’ll do a quickfire analysis on my gaming shelf of supreme disorder. Let’s go!
Cash and Guns Yakuza
Neat Design Decision: Getting players to physically menace each other with foam guns and swords pretty much holds this game together. I play abstract games and often undervalue the importance of components compared to game-play, this is a perfect example of when it really matters.
Room for Improvement: The first time we played this we misread the rules and thought that players had to throw the shuriken at each other, rather than the card representing their character. Leading to feints and dodges and dives. This proved more enjoyable than the actual rule and we refuse to fix it.
I’ve achieved an important milestone in my ongoing campaign to ruin the youth of today, for the crime of no longer counting me amongst their number despite me having continuity of experience from a time where I could eat constant junk, barely sleep and experience no ill effects: I’ve been invited to a university board gaming group to tell them about being a board game designer.
So I’m presently losing sleep over how to price pledge levels for the upcoming Wizard’s Academy kickstarter. Fundamentally the problem is this: I would like to charge the lowest possible price that leads to the game still shipping, to maximise the number of people who get to enjoy the game (This is my main motivation for being in game design, over industries in which people actually make money and don’t get talked down to at parties). However after a point a lower pledge level makes the campaign less likely to succeed in which case nobody gets to play the game, so today I’m going to review the things that go into setting the price of the pledge level and talk about some solutions that I and other creators have used in the past.
Another designer has challenged me to generate some games that can be played using only a small set of dice and no other components. I think that I’m allowed to assume that the players have a surface to roll the dice onto, but after that I can’t involve any other components in my response. I hold that games are at their best when they present players with interesting choices to make, so since I’m designing in a very limited space I want to map out all of the choices that a person can make about rolling a dice.