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Need help fine tuning prototype

18 replies [Last post]
Anonymous

Im 13 years old and have been working on the game for quite a long time. I finally made a mock up from (shame) clay pieces, and a clear plexiglass board. The reason for the plexiglass, is because the board requires a removable raised platform in the center. The pieces are space themed, and have little 1 in. by 1 in. squares. The board is generally medium sized and has a double raised platform in the middle. I hope to create a standard "cardboard based" board and less breakable pieces for when I attempt to show my game for possible publication. (This may seem kind of weird, but the kids at school really liked it.) Thanks a lot for all you guys help!

Dralius
Dralius's picture
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Joined: 07/26/2008
Need help fine tuning prototype

Sounds like you have already started doing just what you need to fine tune the game. That being getting people to play it and then listening to what they have to say. Get as many people to play it as you can and take notes of what they think is good and bad. If some one says it sucks then find out why they think it sucks. Remember your friends are a great way to do your first tests of the game but they are likely to not tell you when there is a problem to save your feelings. Let them know you would rather be told the ugly truth so you can fix it.

Anonymous
Thanks

Hey, thanks a lot. I'm pretty sure that the mechanics of the game are pretty much complete. I was able to hand out little annoymous surveys, and my friends were more than happy to hurt my feelings and tell me every single minor mistake. (lol) What I really need to ask, is how the pieces could be made, so that they do not break so easily when the game is presented, and also how to make the board better. Thank you.

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

Still looking for help...

tjgames
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Need help fine tuning prototype

Quote:
The pieces are space themed, and have little 1 in. by 1 in. squares.

I am having trouble visualizing what the piece is. Is it just a square?
Need More Info Please
:lol:

hpox
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Need help fine tuning prototype

Maybe you could snap up some pics?

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

Coronamew14 wrote:
I hope to create a standard "cardboard based" board and less breakable pieces for when I attempt to show my game for possible publication.

Unless you're really good at sculpting miniatures, the best way that I can think of to make your playing pieces would be to use printed cards in plastic stands. There are plenty of places to get plastic stands (even small enough to fit within a 1" x 1" square).

As for making the board, there are plenty of other threads on the forum with information of that kind. Board, spray adhesive and some patience and you can have yourself a fine looking prototype!

Good luck!

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

Just had another thought, you could also use avery round labels to print the images and then adhere them to small chips of some sort (whatever fits on your game board) to make flat counters for your game.

Anonymous
Thanks... Need 3-D

Thanks for your help. Although these ideas are very workable and would be absolutley fine, I feel that to the three-dimensional pieces are really neccesary to the feel of the game. It's almost comparable to Chess. Chess wouldn't be as much fun without the little plastic figurines, and I think the same applies for my game. I'm really asking for, perhaps an "unbreakable clay" of somesort. Almost like a plastic... Something that can be made 3-D and not chip or break. Also, for those who cannot vizualize the actual game BOARD, it is essentially a square, with in the center, a RAISED PLATFORM. Sort of like a ziggurat in the center. (A ziggurat is an Aztec Step Pyramid...) And at the top of this pyramid is a trophy, which must be claimed by the player. I would like to take some pictures, but I really need to get around to it. I'll try to get them up in a few days. I really appreciate all of you guys' help with my project!

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

I'd suggest going to a local teachers' supply store or arts & crafts store and buying some synthetic clay that can be "fired" in your oven at home. The two most popular brands are Sculpey and Fimo. These are modeling clays that are quite popular, especially with jewelry hobbyists. You can sculpt, cut, form, mix...whatever you can do with regular clay...only this stuff bakes hard in your oven, and is extremely shatter-resistant. It also comes in a variety of colors, so you can find the colors you need to make your pieces.

Good luck to you!

LINKS:
Sculpey
Fimo (not the actual site, but easier to link to)

Anonymous
Good Idea...

Thanks. I've tried baking clay before and it became very brittle, and cracked into pieces. But after looking up Sculpey, it claims that it will not break and in the thinner areas, bend. So I think I will try the Premo! Sculpey clay. Now all I need is a method to make the board...

FastLearner
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Need help fine tuning prototype

Both Sculpey and Fimo are really excellent, and won't break apart.

You can probably find it cheaper at a art supply superstore like Michaels than at a teacher supply store. In fact Michaels very regularly runs specials on both Fimo and Sculpey... their Sunday flier also usually has a "40% off one item" coupon that would allow you to buy a Fimo or Sculpey starter set or large chunk of a single color for a great price.

(Sorry I missed this thread before.)

-- Matthew

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

There's also something called Paperclay, which is supposed to be excellent, and it doesn't have to be oven-dried. It air-dries, feels a lot like soft wood and can be painted and sanded. Haven't tried it, but I've read lots of good things about it.

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

When you say you need the 3D figures, do you mean miniatures style figures (like the hundreds of thousands of wargame and role-playing miniatures available at hobby and game shops)? Do you mean more abstracted figures like those used in chess?

For ease of sculpting you could use casting wax. There are a large variety of tools and waxws available at most art and craft stores. You would then use some kind of rubber/latex molding agent to create a mold from which your pieces would be cast using casting resin or even plaster. The mold compound would depend on the complexity of the figures and the depth of the relief. This would also give you the ability to create several pieces from a single mold (for multiple prototypes).

It won't be easy and will require a lot of practice and experimentation, but if you need 3D pieces, this is the way to go.

Anonymous
A lot of ideas...

Thanks for all the great ideas. I really like the wax molding one, but I really don't think I would be very good at it. I guess it's worth a try. Also, the pieces aren't that intricate... You can get a look at what they looked like when I made them out of the breaking clay at the post in The Game Design Forum. The rules and like are there. I appreciate all your help and please look at my post.

Anonymous
Great ideas!

Thanks everyone! I have successfully created new pieces, that aren't likely to break. Now, all I need is some help designing a cheaper version of, or an alternate to, the raised platform involved in my game. For a look at a 3-D rendering of the board check my post in Game Design (Galaxy Wars by Ryan Brenner... please also comment on the overall game). I really like all of your guys help in my board game making endeavors.

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

OK, your board looks simple enough to make. I'd suggest either plywood (from your local Home Depot) or foamcore board (from your local arts & crafts store). Either one can be easily cut, glued, and painted.

If you want to get more involved, you could do it in plexiglass (again, from your local hardware store), but that's a bit harder to work with, and it's also a lot more prone to marks and dings while you're working with it.

Whatever you do it with, just make sure you're using the proper tools and safety precautions.

Oh, and a side note about your rules docs and whatnot: not everyone uses (or wants to use) MS Office, so a more standardized format might be a good idea. PDF works great. I've downloaded and converted them for you; email me and I can get you the PDFs.

Good luck!

Anonymous
Thank KevMan

Wow! Thanks for converting those files!
Heh heh... The funny thing is, I already have created the board out of plexiglass! I was looking for a less heavy method (the foam sounds good).
As for making the PDF Files for me, thanks a ton. However, after Jeff reviewed my rules, I decided to re-type the entire thing... Please however e-mail me the converted files. One more thing; what program did you use to convert them? I could probably download it or maybe even already have it. Thanks.

Email: RBrenner14@aol.com

Anonymous
Need help fine tuning prototype

I've just sent the PDFs to you. I created them in Mac OS X, which has native OS-wide support for PDF creation. I happen to have MS Office for Mac, so that's what I used to open them for conversion (the conversion part, though, is handled from within the OS X print protocols).

There are probably some free or cheap Windows alternatives for creating PDFs...you may want to check VersionTracker.com to see if you can find something.

Good luck with your game!

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