The process of designing a game to be played, such as the creation of the game mechanics and theme and the associated rules, board, map, cards, tokens and/or other playing implements. Also includes the process of play testing early versions of the game to refine and improve these elements.

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11
votes
6answers
3k views

Where to go to self publish a game?

I found this question but I am interested in a commercial or bulk printing company to print my game. The GameCrafter seems like the only solution but its rather costly per game to print which means I ...
14
votes
6answers
857 views

Players who can't seem to follow the rules — What can be done?

Non--board-game people keep making up their own rules, without knowing it. I'm talking about players who are intelligent and literate, but who don't generally play board games. Is there anything a ...
2
votes
3answers
291 views

Homegrown solo variants

This afternoon, I played Ascension for the first time - and I played it solo, by simply dealing two decks and playing both players' turns. I had fun, and ultimately Ascension seems like a game where ...
9
votes
7answers
366 views

How to show turn order when turn order can change during the round

I'm working on a game where the order of players' turns matters quite a bit, and I'm having trouble coming up with a way of showing the order. During the round, each player will take their turn. ...
4
votes
5answers
398 views

Has online play testing been an important part of any boardgame designs?

I am wondering if any game designers have used an online implementation of a game to balance and tweak it before commercial release.
2
votes
2answers
399 views

Are there games with board presentation similar to Talisman and Relic? [closed]

I'm referring to the way the art for different spaces spills over into other areas of the board, creating a panorama or telling a story with the outer and inner regions of the board. Are there any ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

I have an idea for a card game. How can I best start testing it?

I've been playing around with an idea for a card game for some time, and I think I've finally got the idea fairly well in place. How can I best start testing it out to refine it?
3
votes
2answers
288 views

How to design the end of a race game such that over-rolls do not break the logic of the game?

I created a race game. Players start at one end and roll dice until they reach the end. Some players became confused when they reached the end. For example, if a player was three spaces from the end, ...
2
votes
2answers
500 views

How would Master of the Wild Hunt be worded if it targeted multiple creatures?

Master of the Wild Hunt says: [...] {T}: Tap all untapped Wolf creatures you control. Each Wolf tapped this way deals damage equal to its power to target creature. That creature deals damage equal ...
12
votes
8answers
24k views

What is the best way to print cards for my game?

I want to print cards for my game, without using a commercially-available site. Basically, I'm looking for materials I could find in a store. How do I make these cards in a work- and price-efficient ...
4
votes
2answers
275 views

Diminishing Returns vs Increasing Returns

I'm making a board game about constructing molecules out of elements. For example you can construct water out of 2 hydrogen and 1 oxygen. When a player constructs it they take a water card worth 6 ...
7
votes
3answers
238 views

How can I identify games that would work better on the computer?

What are the things that the electronic version can do to enhance gameplay? Conversely, what could the board game version do to overcome this view? Feel free to use examples if it would help clarify ...
5
votes
4answers
555 views

Mechanism to balance all game stages

I am designing a game in which players add tiles to the board (similar to Carcassone) in order to create sequences of symbols (which are on the tiles) - they are then used for playing cards. This ...
1
vote
2answers
671 views

Number Wheel/0-9 Decagon gear for board game?

Is there a 0-9 number wheel / plastic decagon thing available for board game construction? I previously asked a question about possible techniques for tracking multiple variables. Here I am asking ...
4
votes
5answers
540 views

Keeping track of many independent variables on a physical board?

I have a large number of independent variables which I would like to represent on a physical game board. One idea I had was to implement these using rotating disks, a little like the metal spinning ...
12
votes
6answers
505 views

Creating an “Everyone but me knows my role” mechanic

I am trying to design a game where there are X citizens + 1 saboteur. Unfortunately for the saboteur he does not know that he is it. All the citizens know that one of them is replaced, and they all ...
11
votes
2answers
310 views

What reasons would a designer want to employ squares over hexes in a battle simulation game?

In many games I have played, initial editions (eg the 1960s version of Midway) use squares for their boards. Often, later editions (eg the 1990s edition of Midway) change to a hex pattern. Hexes get ...
4
votes
1answer
178 views

Othello on a non-square board?

Many games - such as Othello, Checkers, Chess1, and Go - are played on highly-regular, square boards. How would the game mechanic change if you played an Othello-like game on, say, a Chinese Checkers ...
12
votes
9answers
313 views

How can I clearly detail all possible destinations from every point of the map in my game?

I'm making a game about traveling the world and I stumbled across one big problem, so I hoped you could give me some good suggestions. In my game players can choose to which cities they want to go on ...
3
votes
3answers
281 views

Looking for games with drop-in drop-out mechanic [closed]

When playing video games, I often prefer games that are easy to drop in and drop out of. Games like Team Fortress 2 where players are always respawning so the new player isn't set back, especially if ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

Are there guaranteed winning strategies for Quarto?

As we all know in standard tic-tac-toe the game can't be won if both players play optimally. So: Is Quarto a game that will end in a draw if both players play optimally? If yes, what are the most ...
9
votes
4answers
512 views

Why isn't the minimum bid for a property its mortgage value?

It seems rather odd that the minimum bid for an unmortgaged property in Monopoly is $1, instead of it being the mortgage value (or mortgage value -10% approximately). Bidding may start at any ...
7
votes
1answer
216 views

Will a developer fix a (small) broken mechanic, or should I fix it before the submission process begins?

I am (co)designing a pickup-and-deliver strategy game. Extensive playtesting has revealed what I believe to be a slightly broken aspect of the endgame (basically, there comes a point when everyone ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Designing a Yu-Gi-Oh! like card game - the game phases

Yu-Gi-Oh! has 6 phases, of which only 4 are actually visible to a player playing in real life. Main phase 1, battle phase, main phase 2, end. I personally do not like the way these phases work, and ...
4
votes
2answers
247 views

How can I cheaply and easily create stackable tiles?

I'm building a prototype with stackable tiles in several different shapes. I 3D-printed some tiles that lock together nicely, but it is too expensive to 3D-print all the tiles I need to make multiple ...
5
votes
2answers
159 views

A game for two. Should I make it playable by more?

I am developing a strategy game for two players. It is something somehow in the line of 1960: The Making of the President (but less complicated and with a quicker gaming rhythm…) Both the theme and ...
19
votes
3answers
561 views

How can I mitigate some of the downtime between player's turns?

For games in which it is not possible to take simultaneous turns, as the number of players increases, so does the wait time between a player's turn and their turn again. It becomes a balancing issue ...
11
votes
7answers
562 views

System for secretly choosing between two options?

I have a graphics project for school and the task is to design a board game. I need to work out a system by which two players can simultaneously make a secret choice between two options and then ...
13
votes
7answers
656 views

How can you have units with secret locations on the board?

I've heard that there are games where the units on the board are secret -- that the other player doesn't know where they are. How does this actually work? How can you have units on the board without ...
15
votes
2answers
881 views

Playing Risk in an arbitrary graph

A Risk board represents the map of the world, or of Europe. Thus, it implies some constraints for example on the connectedness of a territory. I would like to explore how graph theory could help your ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

What's the easiest way to prototype a board game design?

In an idle moment I had an idea for a simple war game simulation. (Really simple - honest!) I'd like to prototype it, just to see if the game mechanic I thought of has any merit. I don't want to spend ...
19
votes
7answers
550 views

Something that only happens every X turns

I'm working on a new board game where there's an action (we'll call it Brazening) that only happens every X turns (let's say it happens every 5 turns). What's a good way to keep track of when it's ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Formal Format for Documenting the Game Design Process

Is there a formal format for documenting the game design process? Before you answer with "The Game Design Document (GDD), of course!", in my opinion (and lots of people's opinions as well, I think) a ...
-1
votes
1answer
256 views

What percentage of board games on the market involve dice?

I realise there is probably no way to get an accurate figure, just looking for a ballpark estimate of approximately how many board games there are out there, and how many of those involve dice ...
5
votes
1answer
432 views

With Print&Play board games, should the focus be beauty or simplicity?

Many Print & Play (P&P/PNP) board games come from a designer's desire to get people to play their game. If the intent of designing a P&P board game is getting the most people to play it, ...
10
votes
1answer
256 views

Do you need a solo player variant to make a Print&Play game successful?

A friend of mine is creating a multiplayer dice game. The game rules are currently designed for 3-5 players, and don't require much of an investment for the PnP to create the necessary components. ...
12
votes
6answers
351 views

What game mechanic can be used for evenly selecting other players but not yourself?

I am looking for a game mechanic for a game I am designing, that would let players randomly select other players, but that by the end of the game all the players were selected equally. My first ...
29
votes
2answers
1k views

How do game designers come up with suggested (or minimum) age requirements for games?

Is there a standard formula or procedure for determining suggested (or minimum) age requirements for games? Or do a few game designers just sit around and discuss for a few minutes and then just come ...
3
votes
2answers
183 views

What are some methods for delivering questions to players?

I am design several games for students. The purpose of these games is to encourage the students to discuss various topics related to their lessons during their study hall period or at home. If the ...
8
votes
9answers
838 views

Rock-paper-scissors type randomizers [closed]

Most non-luck-free games use either open-ended randomizers (like dice, or spinners) or closed-ended randomizers (cards, chit pulls, etc). But there is an alternative, which is simultaneous revelation ...
13
votes
1answer
440 views

Tri-dimensional board games: How does the additional dimension extend possible player requirements & game structure?

Recently I saw the Star Trek chess game in a serial and looked it up on wikipedia. It exists as a real game, but it seems it's not too popular, too tricky, too unwieldy to carry and play everywhere, ...
16
votes
3answers
686 views

How do I find players willing to participate in test-playing my games?

I have some game ideas that are currently in the prototype phase. I am now looking for groups who are willing to test these games. I am somewhat afraid that they won't like the game and would not be ...
7
votes
1answer
371 views

What are common replacement components?

As my board game collection grows and wears down, I find myself curious about efficiencies that can be made when hauling games around from place to place. The first time I realized that you could ...
10
votes
4answers
526 views

How do I tell potential game designers their ideas are bad?

Many groups of gamers will eventually attract potential game designers. I love testing games or playing with mechanics and enjoy play testing or theory crafting. But a good boardgamer does not a ...
8
votes
2answers
612 views

Resolving Diplomatic actions in a RISK-style board game

I'm working on a board game called Farlanthia: Lords of War. And I need some help with resolving diplomacy during play. My original idea was to have Diplomacy be a form of "attack" like in RISK. ...
5
votes
1answer
222 views

What do I need to consider when creating a new card game variant?

I came up with a card game variant, combining Texas Hold 'Em and Cribbage, with a friend. You basically follow Hold 'Em play mechanics, and the best hand at showdown is the 5 card hand (2 hole cards ...
6
votes
1answer
170 views

Know any games designed for old game systems like Orion or Sly

Recent game systems like piecepack, Decktet, or Stonehenge have tons of games to try, but older game systems like Sly and Orion only seem to have the official rules (PDF) that came with them. ...
8
votes
1answer
393 views

Does anybody know of a list of color-appropriate effects for new cards in Magic?

My playgroup has started to get into creating custom cards for our casual Magic: the Gathering games, but it's no fun if the cards aren't designed in a plausible way. According to Mark Rosewater's ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

Russian Roulette Alternative? [closed]

Does anyone know of an established variation on Russian Roulette using dice or cards that doesn't involve shooting yourself in the head and would be somewhat child friendly? Thanks :)
4
votes
3answers
151 views

Source for significant historical events

I'm designing a game that involves identifying historical events, and I'm looking for an online source that I can use to generate a set of event cards. For my prototype, I'm using a copy of the game ...