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Hey there!

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kurai
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Joined: 06/06/2011

I'm new here!
I'm an italian game designer and, though I never really designed a board game, I'm trying to build one right now for a local contest. It would be a card game, about building stuff in a jungle and making monkeys live in the building. Something like that. If you have any kind of advice on how using this space at best, well, it would be welcome.
Thank you!

suf
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Joined: 07/26/2010
Hello kurai, A few random

Hello kurai,

A few random ideas that come to mind; not sure how much they suit your game theme:
- consider having tree cards. Players would have to play tree cards in front of them;
- building cards. They could be played on top of a tree card. You can have multiple building types;
- different monkeys. Each monkey type prefers certain building types. Also some trees can only accomodate certain buildings, or some can have multiple buildings, maybe also a smaller building can be installed on top of a larger one etc;
- monkeys should come from somewhere - maybe each round a player plays 1-2 cards then a few monkeys come in randomly and choose the player with the building they like most. Another idea is that you also have monkey cards and you need to play one monkey each round, but you can only put monkeys in other player's buildings (you need 3+ players for this to work)
- a different idea is to have buildings for two monkeys (maybe male + female) and then they make a baby monkey;
- players could also interact with the monkeys directly: move monkeys from building to building, get them to perform certain actions (use monkeys as workers)

I'm sure there are many other ideas for this game. Since you're a designer, you'll be spending a lot of time on the looks of the pieces, but first do some ugly cards and a lot of play testing before actually drawing nice bananas ;)

Good luck with the monkeys!

kurai
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Joined: 06/06/2011
Thank you! That's even more

Thank you!
That's even more than I was wishing :)
Actually, I love many ideas you pointed out. In my early design monkeys would be part of the cards, so basically you can play them instead of a building or an event you don't need. Something like in 51st state, where you can play cards in different ways.
Plus, I'm trying to have a mechanic in which players can steal monkeys each other using fruits or maybe gems.
I want these monkeys to be nasty :)
Thanks again!

suf
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Joined: 07/26/2010
That's great! Using cards in

That's great! Using cards in different ways should be a great touch and is being used with success lately.

Being able to steal monkeys would add a lot of interaction. It would also add risk management to the game, which is something I always enjoy in a game (I think Reiner Knizia is the best at this; would help if you every tried some of his card games). Also, try to raise the risks and rewards towards the end of the game so that the tension builds up. You may want to make it a bit easier for players with lower win chances to recover.

You could also try a mechanic of gathering points during the game, like for example each round every monkey in your buildings produce a point, or you get baby monkeys so the population grows. Then if you steal monkeys early in the game you can get many points. However, this should come with some risk or small disadvantage, like for example stealing monkeys from others would cost you cards that you use as building material and you build slower. Anything that works, just make sure things balance out so that players can try different strategies without having one strategy that is obviously better. Also, players sould be able to adapt to other players' actions. And most importantly, if a player falls behind, she should feel like there's still hope to win.

I like the idea of stealing monkeys with fruits. It would be nice if players could also protect from being stolen from by playing a similar or higher fruit to prevent you from stealing their monkey.

If it helps, you could also have to pay food to keep your monkeys on every round, otherwise some monkeys leave your buildings. This is more a mechanic suited to strategy/economic games so maybe it's not what you need.

Let us know how your ideas build up and how the game development goes.

sedjtroll
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Joined: 07/21/2008
Lure with bananas

My first thought when I read about your theme would be to lure monkey's to your 'hotel' (or whatever) with Bananas! Maybe you have to buy bananas, or plant them, or maybe you just have some, and maybe the more bananas you give a monkey the more likely he will come to your board instead of somebody else's.

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