Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Brainstorm!

My Game Design classmates and I are just beginning the process of creating our board games. This week is all about brainstorming and generating ideas. 


The first thing I did when I started brainstorming was consider the fundamental problems that need solving, and the guidelines we are required to follow in creating our board game.
So I asked myself: 
How do I make a game that's easy to learn but difficult to master? That is playable by as few as two people? That has a good balance of chance and strategy? That takes 20 minutes or less to play? With less than 100 pieces? 
Walk Of Shame 
Theme/Concept idea: A game about those awkward "morning after" walks.
Mechanic Ideas:
1. Players start out from the "One night stand's dorm"
2. Players much reach their own dorm at the other side of the board.
3. Whoever reaches their own dorm first wins.
4. There could be draw cards that say things like "Stop for coffee, do not move for two turns" or "You find an abandoned children's scooter, advance 3 extra steps" or
5. Maybe there's a mechanic like a shame-o-meter that affects players.
6. Maybe if the shame-o-meter is something that affects point count game could end when ALL players reach their final destination but winner is determined by how high the shame-o-meter reached.
7. An idea for a card that could effect both the shame-o-meter and player advancement in the game could be "You forgot your cell phone at the one night stand's dorm, go back to start and add +10 to your shame-o-meter"

Robot Army
Theme/Concept Idea: You are a mad scientist building a robot army!
-Each army unit could have a certain amount of points, so that whoever's army adds up to the highest amount of points at the end wins.
-Probably wouldn't need a board for movement in this game, just a score keeper board and a dock for the cards players would be drawing.
-Might be interesting to have a mechanic which requires players to budget and manage money in order to afford their army.
-Potential card types could include robot units, robot special units which would be like normal robot units in terms of point count but perhaps they also have special abilities of offensive or defensive variety. Maybe there are even "disaster" cards scattered throughout the deck which cause players to sacrifice pieces of their army or pay a certain amount of money to fix a problem.
-If budget is a factor maybe the turn system could be simply each player gets one action per turn, they can either draw money from the research funding bank, or buy robot army units, or draw from a stack of goal cards.
-Research funding bank and robot army unit bank could be 4 cards placed face up on the table that gets replenished whenever someone draws from them. Could also allow players to draw from the face down piles, though that may encourage cheating for my next mechanic idea.
-If disaster cards/random cards are a factor it could be a situation where either they are spread throughout the robot army or funding bank (Or possibly special/disaster cards tailored for each deck) that whoever draws one of those cards while they are replenishing either banks or drawing from the face down pile MUST play immediately when drawn.

Elemental Warfare
Theme/Concept Idea: 2-4 players are dueling Wizards of either Earth, wind, water, or fire.
1.To keep things manageable for print and play version cards could be in black and white but with a little marker or symbol in color to determine which deck is which.
2.A Deck for each element each featuring a slightly different play style/have advantages and disadvantages depending on which element.
3. Card types: Magic, monster, and action.
4. First player to a certain amount of points wins OR maybe game end is triggered by whoever runs out of their deck first.
5.Board or "base" card would have a slot for each player to play their cards with a score marker around the board to keep track of who has what score.

Mage's Way 
Theme/Concept idea: 2-4 Novice Magi set out on their own harrowing quests to win the title of Archmage.
Mechanic Ideas:
-Game board could look like the map in a fantasy book.
-The journey could be marked by game pieces called "journey markers". The idea would be that players connect destinations by using these journey markers and stringing them between certain destinations on the board. Just like how Ticket To Ride's destination system works. This could also set an end game. Also like ticket to ride it could be interesting to have path goal cards.
-Maybe specific points on the map could have "Confrontation points" in which they are required to fight whatever monster or thing is indicated on the board. Maybe the player needs to roll dice to determine whether or not they win the fight.