Our next game assignment in Game Design class is to create a dice game. This is tricksy on several fronts…

1) I am inevitably to face my old nemesis, Math, many times during the course of this assignment. Jesse gave us an abridged probability lesson today, and it’s still hard for me to wrap my brain around.

2) The hopscotch assignment gave us a jump-start. Because we had to redesign an existing game, it was easy to come up with a set of problems to solve. Jesse has said many times that we should come up with a problem statement, and that our design should seek to solve said problem(s). With this, it is more of a “start from scratch” attitude, so I’m a little unsure how to seek out the problems I want to solve with my game…

Am I to think of problems with dice games in general? That seems rather vague. Perhaps I should come up with a concept first and establish my problems after the first playtest? Hmmm….

I am half tempted to create Dieslinger, as wielding large handfuls of dice is something that greatly appeals to my tactile sense. Whether I make that game or not, I will at least cite Dispatching the Dungeon Master in my brainstorming process.

Thoughts? How do you guys feel about dice? What are your favorite dice games? Mine’s probably yahtzee, or shut the box. What do you like about these games? What don’t you like?

Hopscotch, final version

After 5 iterations, I got my hopscotch redesign to turn-inable quality (meaning that I ran out of time, there’s always “one more thing” you could have done).

Really, though, I’m proud of it, as my playtesters seemed to really enjoy themselves for this final go!

I am most amazed at how radically different this version turned out than my initial concept. I think it’s easy to assume that ideas are born in totality, but there’s quite a bit of teardown and reworking and…well…iterating involved in this sort of thing.

And so, I give you my ruleset and analysis for…

Musical Hopscotch


The Bandology consensus on Cloverfield:

Andy: Cloverfield is the second movie ever to give me motion sickness.

Edmundo: Cloverfield gave me a hangover

Me: Cloverfield almost gave me a freakin seizure

The conclusion being, don’t take those warnings at the ticket counter lightly

Game Design and Hopscotch

After a very relaxing break, and a very rewarding trip touring companies on the west coast, the semester has started and I am back in action!

My project group is awesome, I can tell, but I’m also taking Jesse’s Game Design class, which terrifies me. Usually, when I take a class or do something, I feel like I have some knack for it going in, but Game Design is something I have NO idea if I’ll be any good at or not. It’s a scary thing! The last time I took a step into something I had no idea about was when I took my first computer programming class at Centre…

…and then, of course, I ended up reveling in the challenge, majoring in it, and supposedly being rather good at it. So, who knows!

Anyway, our first assignment is to redesign hopscotch. No easy feat, let me tell you! We have to go through and document a particular process with this, and Jesse is all about establishing the problems that your design will attempt to solve. So, after playing a round of hopscotch with a classmate on a crudely made court of masking tape, here are some problems with hopscotch I’ve come up with:

1) It’s too easy
2) waiting to take turns is boring
3) if you fall behind early on, your only hope is that the other people will also screw up, otherwise you’re screwed
4) even if you all play a perfect game, whoever goes first will win
5) turns are self-contained, there’s no real interaction between players, they don’t affect each other
6) the more people play, the bigger the downtime-to-playtime gets, and the more boredom is able to flourish
7) punishments (losing turn if falling or stepping on lines) but not much in the way of rewards (you get to keep going, woo?)

I think I am most interested in solving problems 2 and 5, because I think they could be solved together. On to the brainstorming!

Any thoughts are welcome.