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Body, Soul and Spirit

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Mathew L Hamm
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OK
My brother and I where talking about making a board game. I am a graphic artist and I love creating solutions to problems. I want to create a game for the Christian community the three elements (Body, Soul and Spirit). (I will also start a journal)
The BODY being the physical component of the game. It will Live and Die within the game.
The SOUL being how your individuality.
The SPIRIT is the source of your power, either good or bad.

In the game you will be born and have a life road from birth till death, every action that you take will affect your Body, Soul and Spirit.

I have two options as far as the goals go.
Option 1
would be to enter into heaven, with your rewards, the player with the most rewards win.

Option 2
would be to have an evil player preventing a good player from getting into heaven.

The main focus of the game would have to be the Soul.

The game is targeted at the Christian audience. and of all ages.

Comments and Critics welcome.

Black Canyon
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No evil players

It might be best to have all of the players aiming for the same goal. You could have the bad influences come from the game. Of course, then it would be easy for the players to know what to do and what not to do. Perhaps you could have events that start out as good but lead to bad. Like the old saying, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."

Pastor_Mora
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I agree

Option 2: Good vs Evil 2 player variant doesn't sound good. Plus, I don't know how to say this in english but the "two gods" issue is theologically wrong for christians and it won't look good for a kid to play "evil" against his little sister/brother

Option 1: the whole "winning" thing seems out of place when talking about entering heaven

May I suggest a 3rd variant? Common objective, cooperative play, temptation card events, a beat-the-game type of gameplay.

This way you can work into the community aspect. Some players may have particular skills, or blessings, or "spirit" as you said that would help them and other players deal with their temptations. They, in return, will have to rely on other players to overcome their own. You can use body and soul as resources and spirit as actions. Maybe add knowledge or wisdom as resources too, or something that gets the mind factor in the way. Maybe charisma also.

I'm thinking Pandemic here, with your own twist on the theme part.

Keep thinking!

Mathew L Hamm
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influences

You are right about having the same goal. And I'm thinking of influences and how it would affect a characters life, and their faith. You just sparked a bunch of ideas in my head....

Mathew L Hamm
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totally agree

I agree with both of you. good and evil only good if its against game only. Here is what is boiling on my head.

Picture a world map, each with its own territory ( Risk like) and with world religions and % of influence or control. your job would be to go out into the "nations and baptized them" spreading the word of God. Now in order for a player to enter into a land where the majority of people are of a different religion he would have to have X amount of money, influence, knowledge, wisdom and Faith.

Once a player has entered a territory he has options of things to do in the territory to influence the people of that territory, each options can have consequences.

Now the question would be, how would a player win the game?!
perhaps to reach the entire world before your life ends?

That means that this could be even a single player game!?

I like the idea of giving life point to the the character. Each turn a player adds 1 point to their life and after they reach midlife (specific amount of turns agreed on by players) they would start taking points from their life. Once the players life reaches 0, the game would end.

Of course I could add things like stress to take points from their life or Faith to give a longer life.

What you guys think?

Hey Pastor Mora is your first language Spanish? If so where are you from? I was raised in Colombia S.A. my parents where Missionaries there.

Pastor_Mora
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Buenos Aires, Argentina

If you do a missionaries game, you may try to use an ancient map around the mediterranean and use the apostoles as playing characters. Even if each chose its own paths, you have many letters (form Peter mostly) supporting each other's efforts in their local communities. So that's kind of an interaction.

The thing with cooperative play is that you have to have players constantly interacting among them. Otherwise, you'll end up with a "multi-player solo" game.

I don't share your whole "life" idea (sorry). I would choose "health" instead, and treat it like a resource to pay for actions (like "traveling" pay 2 health and move, or "alone in the desert" pay 2 health and gain 1 soul permanently).

Maybe you can narrow down you idea a little more, so you can get more precise feedback here.

PS forget about Money mixing with religion, is a bad word for some people

bielie
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I do not know what your

I do not know what your religious background is, but here are my thoughts
Option one: Short game. John 3:16 says it all. Getting into heaven is the easiest thing on earth. It is easier than falling out of bed.
I would rather change option one from salvation and rewards (Christianity is absolutely not about earning rewards anyway, it is about a Relationship) to different goals: Think John Bunyan's The Pilgrims Progress.
Option two: I believe this has definitive possibilities: Read CS Lewis' Screwtape Letters. Players can be Minor Devils trying to tempt the humans (Not other players, but the game) . I am not sure who owns the IP for Screwtape Letters, but it may be worth finding out.

http://www.amazon.com/Screwtape-Letters-Special-Illustrated/dp/006170818...

http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/131

richd
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Some thoughts

What popped into my head, after reading your original idea and the feedback, is having a cooperative game where pieces move on a continuous board (e.g., Monopoly board - sorry if there's lingo for this I should be using). All players start at one place, maybe the "life event" space. These pieces are the "body" and move around with dice rolls. Every time they go around the board once and pass the "life event" space, they get a +10 years card. Once a player has 10 of these, he or she stays at the life event spot ("death" at age 100) and does not move from that spot (but can still roll and use leftover cards to help other players).

At the start, everyone is "born" and moves around the board as babies (innocents). Landing on different spaces means getting different positive things (faith cards, prayer cards, blessings, resist temptations, etc.) and possible negative things (moment of weakness, temptations, shaken faith, illness, etc.). When younger, there is a less chance of things affecting the player (e.g., a baby is not affected by temptation but can be affected by illness). As a body gets older, the chances of things affecting the person increase. For example, if "illness" is drawn, it means a x1.5 move of the dice for babies, 2x roll for age 10-30, 2.5x roll for age 40-60, and 3x roll for age 70-90: until the other players have enough "faith, prayer, and blessing" cards to help cure the illness.

If a temptation card is drawn, for example, the card can say within age categories, what the effect is and what it takes to counter this (giving up things or being moved up the board to a certain spot, etc). All negative event cards could work this way. (except "illness" which moves the player around the board faster, thus the person is "dying faster"). The person could be more tempted in the middle ages of 20-60 and less at the ends ages 0-10 and 70-90.

After getting at least 2 +10 years cards, the person could somehow have the option to get married and this could have benefits in the game (x2 blessing or something). You could come up with other events that do this too (baptism, accepting Christ, other faith-based/life events).

Once all players reach age 100, there are left over positive and negative cards. Players pool up to counter everything negative that they can and see what's left over. If there is more positive stuff left over than negative, the players win. If not, the "game" wins. The only problem I see here is how one construes the "game" as winner.

***************
I hope that jumble of thoughts might help somehow. :)

Mathew L Hamm
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Rich, you hit the nail on the head!

That was my whole intention on the life part of the game. adding life to the game, (Hit points) can increase or decrease your life, depending on circumstances and things that you go though the game. I.E. stress, wrong decisions etc. I don't want the players competing against one another, instead they should help each other. And like most of you have said beat the game.

But I am leaning toward having the board being the actual life of the player from beginning to end. Different stages, like youth, teen, middle years and so on. Each stage would be color coded and player would pick a card from the stage in life that he is in.

After all the comments and some prayer, I believe that God has given me an answer on how to make the game interesting. Here it goes:

You are born into the world (game) as an unbeliever. As you grow and things happen in your life and how YOU react to them, your faith increases or decreases. The goal in the game is to become a believer, get Baptized and try to save the rest of the WORLD before dying. The "world" would be a certain amount of tokens representing people from around the world, the amount of tokens would depend on the amount of players. This way players could help each other in one comon goal and even help other players become believers or Baptize them.

Thanks guys, your comments and suggestions are putting my mind to work.

Wagydan
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First one question

A lot of things come to mind when reading about your plans. But let me first ask you this question:

What needs the World to be saved from?

I'm asking this question because you have posted before that the job of the players would be:
"to go out into the "nations and baptized them" spreading the word of God."
This would be done on a World map where there is land where: "the majority of people are of a different religion".

That, for me, gives a scary prospect to the purpose of your game. I hope I'm misinterpreting all this.
Could you please clarify this for me?

dabuel
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Disasters as enemies

I agree with Wagydan. A world map gives a "conquer the world"-kind of feel and makes me think of the crusades and war which is far from the Christian belief of today (except for some extremist Churches). I would rather go for starvation, diseases and natural disasters as "enemies"... Maybe try to help out and organize the aid in an efficient way. Maybe start out as a young kid helping collecting aid-money and then as you grow older you work as a field-worker on the disaster-sites and then as you turn old you organize the work. The more you help, the more blessings you get. You fight the "evil" in the world and have to fight it. Check out "Lord of the Rings", the boardgame for inspiration. In that game, the hobbits try to avoid corruption by the evil sauron.

Nix_
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I've made a similar

I've made a similar religiously themed game. It is an RPG where each players character increases in 4 spiritual categories, essentially powering them up against temptations and trials. The temptations and trials come from the game at regular intervals, but the biggest problem with my game it that it can be too much solitare, and not enough player interaction. Hopefully you can find a way to made player interaction a better part of your game.

Mathew L Hamm
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Sorry guys

A couple of things to clear up. This game is intended for a "Christian" Audience, so I do not mean to offend anyone here, I'm here to make a game and need the advice of people who has had experience in that field. As far as the converting lands to Christianity is based on the great commission mentioned on the Bible. "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)
But looking at your comment, it gave me and idea, instead a player mentoring tokens, I was thinking of having them plant Churches across the lands.....How does that sound.

Thanks everyone, you all have been very helpful!!

dabuel
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Inspiration

here's a link to a game that I think could be a suitable inspiration:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlcvO8e3JOU
The main-track in the game can be the road to salvation. The small sub-tracks can be renamed into "helping the poor", "spreading love" etc. etc. Have a look! I think this is a good co-op multi-player game!!

I don't want to get into a religious discussion here, but "spreading the word" is part of all religions and has caused a lot of conflicts. Hence, personally I´d like to avoid "conquering the lands/world" type of board. Maybe focus at the central parts of Christian religion i.e. love, forgiveness, understanding, helping the poor and sick etc.
Anyway, good luck with your project and enjoy the youtube-clip!

Wagydan
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Antagonist

I think making this a cooperative game is a good thing. Most likely it's the only option if you want to present players with a challenge but at the same time familiarize them with the blessings of taking 'the good path'. I am assuming you want to have a narrative of the christian faith in the game experience, setting the virtues of choosing good against the destructive consequences of taking the path of evil/less resistance.
If this is the case, giving players an option to take the evil path as a possible way to victory is not an option. Competing to be the most virtuous individual also seems like a bad idea.

In the case of a cooperative game, it's mechanism will have to be the players' antagonist. If you are working from a theme-first, mechanism second mind set (which I think you are and in this case is the best way to go about it), one of the first things you will need to know is what challenge do you present to the players that has to be overcome?

In the game Pandemic, players need to stop multiple murdering virus strains that threaten the World's population. In Lord of the Rings people have to band together to stem the rise of the ultimate evil presented by Sauron. In both cases the antagonist is very unpleasant to say the least. Hence my hesitation to set other religions/believes/cultures as the game's antagonist.

I join dabeul in suggesting that you focus on love, forgiveness, understanding, etc. If you do this, disasters, poverty and the like could be your challenge and, as you have suggested before, temptation the antagonist.

Very well, so far my fifty cents on the message that this game could send out.

For the mechanism itself. When making a cooperative game, keep in mind that all players would pull together to beat the gamesystem. Adding in an individual component as a life cycle (start as infant ... before you die) and combining that with a team effort component (e.g. save the world) will be very hard to pull off. I would suggest to focus on one element and see where the project will take you. Believe me these things start out with one idea and take you to completely different places than your initial fantasy.

Mathew L Hamm
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Thanks

I'm finding out that I'm going to start from the board and work my way outwards. I like all of the Ideas you guys have placed in here. I will be doing everything on pencil and seeing what works and what doesn't. I will be posting a few comments in a few days on what we have done.

dabuel
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maybe collect tokens: Hearts

maybe collect tokens: Hearts (Body), Crosses (Soul) and Bibles (Spirit). These tokens can be used to face different challenges that takes you forward on the path to salvation...

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