If you missed Part 1, check it out first.
For Sale – Most Effective Use of Bidding
For Sale is a quick game. We knocked out 3 games in about 45 minutes. It’s played over two phases. In the first phase, there are several rounds of bidding to spend money on real estate. In the second phase, you try to sell the property you have for the greatest profit through several rounds of blind bidding. Most of the strategy involves determining when to bid high or low. It’s a light, filler game, which was nice because somehow, all weekend long, I was never quite in the mood for a 2+ hour game of anything.
This is a “guest post” from Josh. I say it’s a guest post because I can’t remember the last time I posted anything to the blog. But I wanted to write a bit about some of the board games I played the last weekend in February. Why is the last weekend in February so special? Well, for the second year in a row, I went to Camp Casey for a Game Weekend (in its 11th year) organized by a friend of a friend from church.
So, without further ado, here are the games I played for the first time (I had trouble thinking of things to write about the games I already knew).
(If you haven’t read Part 1, here it is: Design Inspiration Part 1 – I Could Do That)
(Also, this post could have been subtitled “I Love Stargate”)
There has been a trend in the board gaming industry in the last year or so towards cooperative games. These are games where all–or nearly all–players are working towards a common goal. For example, in Pandemic (published in 2008), all players are collectively trying to cure the world of 4 diseases. In Battlestar Galactica (also published in 2008), the humans are trying to survive and return to earth, but one or more of the players are secretly Cylons and are trying to keep them from reaching their destination and destroy them instead.
I played Battlestar Galactica (BSG) for the first time about 3 weeks ago while hanging out with Andrew and his roommates. We played 5 different board games that day, all of which were new to at least one of us: BSG, Pandemic, Race for the Galaxy, Ca$h ‘n Gun$, and Tsuro. It was a fun game, and while I’m not a fan of BSG the TV show and don’t watch it, I knew enough to tell that the game was themed quite well to match the show.
Later that week, I thought to myself that it would be awesome if Stargate also had its own board game. Then, I looked and found this piece of junk, which really isn’t true to what Stargate is about (the first line of the description is “Command a Stargate SG-1 Goa’uld, Earth or Asgard fleet of starships.” Starships? What about the Stargate?) No, a cooperative Stargate game based around going on missions would be a much better idea.
That’s when this idea merged with observations of Adam, and I thought to myself: I could design a cooperative Stargate game. So, I am. Kind of. I mean, really, I don’t expect it to see the light of day, with whatever licensing issues are in play. At the very least, though, it’s fun to work on this idea. Perhaps it might spawn other ideas, or if I’m able to put together a workable design, there’d be nothing preventing me from playing it amongst friends (unless the friends want do other things, which I would not blame them for doing).
Anyway, if you’re interested in what I’ve put together so far on the game, or in contributing ideas in some fashion, let me know, and I’ll hook you up with the site I’ve created for it (I love Google Apps).
I’ve been inspired at times to be a more active internet participant. This is usually prompted by seeing what friends or co-workers are doing online, and realizing that “hey, I could do that too!” I also feel a little guilty when I make use of the information other regular internet people have provided, usually in the form of reviews of products I’m considering purchasing (computer parts), or reviews of trails/hikes I’m looking at going on. I feel guilty because I know the only reason I’m not contributing to this wealth of information is my own laziness.
One inspiring person for me in this regard is Adam. He has a blog, that he uses primarily to post funny or interesting things he finds on the internet. In the past he’s had a widget on the side for yelp.com, showing restaurants he’s recently reviewed. However, the most recent inspiration came from a post he made about 3 weeks ago about a card game design he was working on. He also posted his idea to BoardGameGeek, a site I find myself browsing more and more often these days. His particular game idea is not one that gets me too excited, though I would be happy to help him playtest it sometime. However, it spurred a thought in my head: “Hey, I could do that too!”
Well, to be honest, that alone wasn’t enough to spur me towards believing I can design a game, but that’s were Part 2 comes in: Cooperative Games are Fun.
This past Saturday, we had friends over for games. The first game played was the only one I had not played: Once Upon a Time. It was Adam B’s game and he was the only one who had played it, but it was simple enough and quick enough that we had the gist of it after a 15 minute game, and had time for 2 more games of it.