Dyce is a game designed for The Game Crafter's
Game Pieces Only Challenge.
It's a game using non-printed components only which relies on the colors and numbers of dice to
represent elements of the game. The theme of the game? Whisky blending in the Scottish Highland city
I've always been intrigued by simple and elegant abstract games like chess and go.
Iconoclasm was one attempt to design such a game but the rules
were not as straightforward as players expect from an abstract game.
Lucca builds on the idea of
fighting units with shifting ownership by turning the units into towers and blocks instead.
The strength is measured by tower height and block size, irrespective of color, and the fighting will
cause blocks to be broken up and towers to change owner.
Lucca has the potential of becoming an attractive game with colorful wooden tiles stacked on
A prototype has been ordered and will be further tested during 2018.
Drawing inspiration from the recent
War Game Exhibit at the Stockholm
Army Museum, Bellum se ipsum alet will be revisited. This the second
game by Nova Suecia Game is the only war game so far with the realistic yet unique mechanism of diminishing
supply centers the longer the war continues. One idea is to allow the armies to reach 0 supply to
trigger the end and award the victory to the army with the greatest supply. This will force the players
to fight not only each other but also starvation. Another idea is the double contribution system,
where gold from the cities is used to buy food from the countryside, which recover slowly
(or permanently if plundered). This will force the players to constantly move to feed their armies.
More realism but still in a euro format!
Cosmoclasm will add strategic card victories, allowing a player to manipulate the discs placed
by tactical card victories. The new edition will be called Warring States and build on the
military philosophers of Ancient China.
Dyce will abandon the component only design and return to the original idea of mixing dyes.
The new edition will be called Hangzhou after the city famous for its silk.
The third game to enter a contest is Apokalypsis. The new
edition will see a Gods variant, allowing a player to earn victory points not only for saved
meeples but for perished meeples as well. In addition, new movement rules of evacuating or rallying
to tiles will give a more flexible and dynamic gameplay.
The jury of Fastaval will decide whether this
mechanic is inventive enough for the convention.
Suecia returns to the early Nova Suecia Series games set in the 17th century Sweden. In this game,
the players produce basic domestic goods that are first sold to foreign merchants to be refined but
later refined in own shops. Using the refined goods, the players finance foreign expeditions to
produce refined goods directly, which will be further refined and used for military conquests.
In essence, the game tells the story of how Sweden grew from a poor farming country, via trading with
the Hansaetic League and establishing own trade routes across the Baltic Sea, to become a major
European power engaged in the Thirty Years' War. What is particularly interesting about Suecia is
that all resource transactions and conversions take place on a city grid where all players are present
so the players may both engage in mutually beneficial trades (or piggy-backing if you want) as well
as beating each others to the best deals.
Suecia has still a long way to go but it's an intriguing idea and a completely new path that I look forward to exploring.
During the design of Peoples, I got the idea of making it a double
game, where the components could be used to play both the current migration game and a new civilization
game. The latter game was eventually abandoned but the idea of finding the "holy grail" of a simple
civilization game remained.
The challenge of a civilization game is either that it gets too long
(like the classic Civilization) or that it has to sacrifice elements necessary to create an epic
feeling (like the card-driven games Historia and Nations). Peoples - Civilizations attempts to
overcome those challenges with the following elements:
Modular map: The players start on their own tiles but as they expand, their tiles will merge with
other players' tiles and eventually form a world map.
Swift actions: Each round, players act with 1 unit at the time, starting with the largest player and ending when
a player has acted with all units. This creates a rubber band mechanism, where bigger civilizations only
get one more action than smaller ones.
Engine decisions: In their actions, players can choose to produce resources on the tile or
forego production to move and expand for higher production in the future.
Grain is used to feed the population, with surplus used for adding new citizens
Resources are used to build buildings
Money is used to advance on development tracks
Historical interaction: When the players' civilizations meet, their development tracks
(similar to four of the tracks of Peoples - Migrations) will determine the result.
Military can conquer weaker (and use citizens as subjects)
Religion civilizations can convert weaker (and replace citizens with their own)
Culture can influence weaker (and use citizens as their own)
Economy can trade with weaker (and take their resources)
Map interaction: When the players' civilizations act on the map, their development tracks
(similar to the other two tracks of Peoples - Civilizations) will determine their abilities.
Civics can build cities and increase production by producing from several tiles in one action
Science can move faster and influence on a distance across several tiles
Combinations of development tracks also allow the acquisition of buildings for additional bonuses.
Properly implemented, those simple rules can recreate historical events, like the fall of the Roman Empire
(citizens taken as slaves due to military convert their enemy citizens from within) or the colonization of
the New World (cities take up all space in existing tiles but new tiles get revealed) in a limited playing
time. Exactly what I'm looking for in a civilization game!
Peoples - Civilization was submitted to the
Big Box Challenge.
A prototype has been ordered and will be further tested during 2018.
Le Morte d'Arthur has the ambition of becoming an epic game. The word "epic" does not mean a long or a complex game but rather a game that conveys a feeling to the players, a feeling of a story being told and of characters rising and falling as the story evolves. The game would have to be a combination of a board game and a role playing, rich enough for an epic feeling but smooth and simple enough for a game play of less than 2 hours. Le Morte d'Arthur is still only an idea but the following elements are considered:
Theme: Le Morte d'Arthur used as "bible" for game components, aiming at using as much as possible from the book
Story: Events are randomized to build a story of wars and quests that the players will have to respond to
Characters: Knights and damosels gain arms/craft and virtues/skills that make them stronger
Realm: Knights and damosels gain land to develop in terms of economy and military
Simulation: Enemies and quests are simulated to to create a common goal
Motives: Players are rewarded with positive courtesy points and punished with negative courtesy points that eventually will cause a split between good and evil
Rotating roles: Rotating roles assume "game master" functions so that game secrets may be kept (such as how much each player is rewarded)
Cooperation: Player cooperate to accomplish wars and quests and are rewarded (or punished) based on their contribution and may even marry to increase power
Competition: Players may challenge each other and even wage wars against each other
Final judgement: Good and evil players fight a final battle to determine the winner
Le Morte d'Arthur will mainly be an extension of Knights & Damosels (theme, story, characters, rotating roles, final judgement) but also include elements from Nova Suecia (realm), Tre Kronor Infernum (simulation), Vasa Regalis (cooperation) and Bellum se ipsum alet (competition). Feedback from the old games will be collected and used in the development of this new game. Just like the game session is supposed to evolve slowly, the game design will evolve slowly until all parts are tuned to fit and the whole is mature.
Do you have a game idea that you would like to see realized? Contact us at
firstname.lastname@example.org for a discussion!