# Gene Dreams - 18 Card Programming and Area Control

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Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019

Gene Dreams

An 18 card area control game with programming. for 2-4 players.

You are a genetic engineer trying to sequence the DNA of the perfect creature.

Files for playing:
Rules: http://www.mediafire.com/file/opo9fv2mda5nuid/gene_dreams_rules_01.pdf/file

9 cubes per player
1 token per player

let-off studios
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Joined: 02/07/2011
Responses

Hey there, Ched80! Took a look at your rules and cards, and I have a bit of feedback.

First off, I appreciate a small-footprint game like this. Seems very easy to set up, and players can jump into it immediately.

I wish there were patterns along with the colours. I wanted to print-and-play this, but my printer is only black n' white. I'm not certain what the typical conventions are for PnP versions of games, but since there's a lot of matching involved in your game, I suggest you add distinctive shapes or patterns for those dealing without colour print capability.

Regarding scoring: in your examples, the second of the three cards indicates the Red Player earns 4 points, but the card lists 3 Points in its points medallion. Can you explain how 4 Points is earned in this case?

Best of success with your design...! :)

Jay103
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Joined: 01/23/2018
fyi the rules say "8 cubes".

fyi the rules say "8 cubes".

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Some corrections (to be validated)

Jay103 wrote:
fyi the rules say "8 cubes".

Actually the rules say BOTH:

1> It says "8 CUBES" in the SET-UP.

2> It says "6 red cubes" in the COMPONENTS.

On page #2, it says: "SEQENCE ORDER" instead of "SEQUENCE ORDER".

Also [3B] has a TYPO: "When this skill is used, fliip the card over."

In the "End Game scoring" section, I believe the 2nd card score is INCORRECT. Shouldn't it be "RED GETS 3 POINTS" and not "2"??? The card says "3" points not "2"...!

I'll re-read it to make sure I haven't MISSED anything else!

Question: What do the NUMBERS on the "Location Card" represent (or used for)? Like in the rulebook, the "Location Card" has a Blue square with a "3" and a Cyan square with a "4". What do those values symbolize. There is no mention of them elsewhere in the rulebook (I don't think ... I don't remember reading anything about it...)

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
Thanks for the feedback, I'll

Thanks for the feedback, I'll correct the rules and upload the new version today.

Yes, the scoring text is wrong. The Red player should score 3.

There should also be 6 cubes, not 8.

I'll also update the cards to be more defined for B&W printers and colour blind players.

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
Question on Numbers in Squares

The numbers restrict those spaced based on player count. I've now added this to the rules.

I also just wanted to say, the cards and the rules have been updated and are available via the same links above.

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
TableTopia

I've created the game in TableTopia for people to try:

https://tabletopia.com/playground/gene-dreams-v1zcg8/play-now

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
It's clever ... but missing some real "meat-on-the-bone"

Ched80 wrote:
I've created the game in TableTopia for people to try...

Not because it's a copy but I am doing something SIMILAR with "Quest AC v2". Where my game is different is that it's mainly an "Engine Building" mechanic where your game is "Area Control". Indeed the small footprint of your game is "biased". What I mean is that it's simple to play... But there may be a lack of complexity.

With "Quest AC v2", I would want to make a REAL CCG sold in "boosters" and "booster boxes". Because play is SO DIFFERENT from traditional CCGs/TCGs ... I think my "Engine Building" mechanic can lend well to "stories" being told from the cards. I'm probably a bit further into the process... The design has been re-worked several time already. But there are still issues to be worked out (the "core" design is about 75% to 80% done).

Because in your case you are using genetic sequencing... Does that mean that the COLORS MUST be IN-ORDER on the "Location" cards??? Like if it's Orange-Purple... On the "Location" card do you REQUIRE that the sequence must be followed too... OR can you just choose whatever Orange and whatever Purple spaces on the "Location" card?

If you are following the sequences, I would change this and just make it "color" matching.

Here have a LOOK at one of my "Legendary" cards:

Like I said, I'm "further along" in the design but not YET complete. This just shows you what an "Engine Building" version looks like. This card was a "prototype" (alpha stage)...

It's a "6" out of nine (9) card, I personally have made this card very RARE... But it performs as a pretty decent card too in that it should help a player "increase" his resources for the next quest. Players compete to COMPLETE "Quests" rather than DUEL. The GOAL is to be able to have two (2) "core" cards: Heroisms and Terrors. So you can directly mess with a player's "timeline".

But yeah... When I saw your design, it "sorta" reminded me of "Quest AC v2". I also got the impression that you are "trying" to mesh a THEME with the game. I don't use "programming" nor "area control" but you are trying to match colors and you have "Card Actions" that affect the game (like your Gene cards).

I too think my design is "clever"... But the COST to MAKE this game a reality is somewhere around \$30,000. That covers artwork alone (300 cards) and for now it's just a dream... Hahaha ... Your game is called "Gene Dreams"! Just a bit of humor.

What I really find funny is that your design is very SIMPLE and mine is very COMPLEX. Or more accurately mine LOOKS "complex"! But at the "core" both games are accomplishing very "similar" task.

Tell me what you think???

Cheers!

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Somethings to consider

Ched80 wrote:
The numbers restrict those spaced based on player count. I've now added this to the rules...

I just wanted to add, given some "further examination" ... I have concluded that you DON'T NEED the numbers in the Location cards. Furthermore you only have SIX (6) tokens to gather points.

So here are a few of my recommendation after taking some more time with your design:

1> Each Location card should have room for NINE (9) CUBES. This is because (2x 4 +1 = 9). This implies that a tie on any given "Location" can be "broken" by ONE (1) Player.

2> Each player should have TEN (10) CUBES. This means "3 Per Location" ... meaning a potential VICTORY of each "Location" with 1 reserve.

3> You've only got 12 Gene skill cards, 3 per player (up to 4 players). You've got to make the most of these cards and ensure that they are MOST of the time USEFUL. I would suggest TRYING to do it with 5 Gene skill cards given the EXTRA CUBES on the "Location" cards.

I agree that it will make the game less interesting as a PNP (Print-aNd-Play)... But if can increase the possible interest with a "beef-ier" game... (more meat-on-the-bone).

So why 5 Gene skill cards??? That's 2 potential matches x 5 cards = 10 Matches. 3 CUBES x 3 Cards = 9 Matches. So you have a RESERVE of 1 Match... Which means it's possible to blow away your opponents.

4> For the "Victory Point" Gene skill cards, make sure that MATCHING is AUTOMATIC. Like to SCORE +2 VPs, you need to place 2 CUBES on a location.

See that's the thing... You don't need the "ADD CUBES" skill. If you make it about matching CUBES, you can remove some cards and add more "VP" Gene skill cards with various points scoring.

5> I can't think of another "skill" ... But I'll think about it. Maybe because we removed the "ADD CUBES" and made this "automatic" ... I'll see what I can come up with.

I don't think you are in a RUSH to finish this design. Try some of my suggestions and see if you walk away with a more polished game.

You are in no way obliged to test or even consider these IDEAS. Feel free to discard and use whatever you feel is most appropriate for your game.

Cheers!

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
Complexity

Thanks for the feedback and I totally understand the issue about complexity. My last game was had cards with a lot of information on them and, even though the game was quite simple, the complex appearance of the cards put players off trying my game.

So this time I actively trying to scale the appearance of complexity back, but you're right, this game could do with a something else added to it.

The card you present of your game is very nice and I can see what you're aiming for. Gene Dreams is just a stand alone game though, and I don't see the mileage in extra content.

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
Location cards

Quote:
I have concluded that you DON'T NEED the numbers in the Location cards.

I think you're right here - initially this was a way to limit the available spaces players could occupy on each location.

Quote:
1> Each Location card should have room for NINE (9) CUBES.

I'm not convinced by this - it will remove an element of randomness from the game and makes all locations worth the same. I think another way would be so add different placement rules to each location. I could group location spaces into 3 groups of 2/3 squares. Each group would have rules like "only 1 colour", "all different colours", "max 2".

Quote:
2> Each player should have TEN (10) CUBES. This means "3 Per Location" ... meaning a potential VICTORY of each "Location" with 1 reserve.

I'm going to try it with 9 cubes, increasing the GENE cards to have 3 GENE squares per card and keeping the player cards to 3 per player.

Quote:
3> You've only got 12 Gene skill cards, 3 per player (up to 4 players). You've got to make the most of these cards and ensure that they are MOST of the time USEFUL. I would suggest TRYING to do it with 5 Gene skill cards given the EXTRA CUBES on the "Location" cards.

I think giving the player 5 cards to determine the order of is overwhelming. 3 keeps it simple enough whilst giving the player some genuine choices "which bonus do i want to trigger first" plus with 5 cards, you're likely to have duplicates of the bonus, or have the same bonuses from game to game - 3 limits both of this. Plus keeping to 18 cards is really important to me and to keep this as a PnP game.

However, I agree, more cubes would extend the game play, so I think moving to 3 cubes per card and adding the placement rules to the location cards adds a nice extra bit of choice to the game.

Quote:
4> For the "Victory Point" Gene skill cards, make sure that MATCHING is AUTOMATIC. Like to SCORE +2 VPs, you need to place 2 CUBES on a location.

This is going to be too difficult to track. From my play tests, being able to place cubes on any location is essential. It gives the players opportunity to free up their sequence. If they cannot place on previous locations I found players got stuck and would get frustrated. Also being able to place on previous locations means you can steal points, or block points from other players.

Thanks again for your feedback - you are right, it is missing some extra meat and I think adding the location card placement rules, and increasing the cube count will help.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
No worries

Quote:
Thanks again for your feedback - you are right, it is missing some extra meat and I think adding the location card placement rules, and increasing the cube count will help.

Work on what you feel is the best for the game. I'm just suggesting things to look at. And YES, I agree three (3) color matches per card would be a simpler way of sticking to 3 cards and still offer the additional scoring.

Quote:
I'm going to try it with 9 cubes, increasing the GENE cards to have 3 GENE squares per card and keeping the player cards to 3 per player.

And that makes sense for nine (9) cubes too. I just felt like nine (9) was an uneven amount ... So ten (10) would be to allow for an "extra" cube in the event that you would lose a cube. But nine is perfectly good...

Quote:
This is going to be too difficult to track. From my play tests, being able to place cubes on any location is essential. It gives the players opportunity to free up their sequence. If they cannot place on previous locations I found players got stuck and would get frustrated.

Ahh I see... So what you are effectively saying is that you match colors in ANY of the three (3) locations. Yes that would make the game more fluid... For certain less "blockage" (as you indicated).

Quote:
Plus keeping to 18 cards is really important to me and to keep this as a PnP game.

If that's your personal goal... Well then it stands with your modification ideas, you'll still have a format that is compatible with a PNP...

Cheers!

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Saw that you updated the OP

BTW if you are looking for a Channel to SELL your game (I think you are still working on it... But) feel free to check-out the "PNP Arcade":

I know the Graphic Artist, he's a fellow BGDF member from a long time ago. Anyways he is the co-founder of PNP Arcade ... (Jason Greeno)

So this is one (1) way of getting your game OUT-THERE and earning a few bucks... Cheers!

Ched80
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Joined: 02/09/2019
Cheers! it's always good to

Cheers! it's always good to know about things like this!

I'm not really looking to sell this baby - it was more to help me hone my designing skills. Due to work and life, I didn't have much time for developing over the past 2 years, so I thought I'd throw myself back into it by trying to create 12 games in 12 months. This was the first and I'm part way through the second.

Thanks again!

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Not for the money... But for the Honor!

Ched80 wrote:
Cheers! it's always good to know about things like this!

I'm not really looking to sell this baby - it was more to help me hone my designing skills...

No problemo ... Just thought you might be wanting to get your game OUT-THERE and PNP Arcade is a good way. It's just because YOUR PNP would get an "upgrade" in terms of design... I mean if you are SELLING a PNP and PNP Arcade accepts the submission, this is a good sign. It means your designs are sought after and the money is really secondary. I mean you might make only a couple bucks each purchase.

Ched80 wrote:
Due to work and life, I didn't have much time for developing over the past 2 years, so I thought I'd throw myself back into it by trying to create 12 games in 12 months. This was the first and I'm part way through the second.

I hear you... RL gets in the way sometimes. But like I was saying it's not so much as about "Making money" but a question of "Popularity, Achievement, Honor" to be sold on PNP Arcade. Remember, they just don't accept any and all PNPs... They ensure that the PNPs are the best possible quality before making them available.

You won't find "junk" (like most PNPs are ... Not yours) in the general distribution or half-baked ideas, etc. PNP Arcade is a whole OTHER LEVEL for the purchase of small, lite games that usually play within 20 to 30 minutes.

I know you've still got some DESIGN work on "Gene Dreams"... But consider the VISIBILITY a website like PNP Arcade offers your PNP! And I know you can even offer it for FREE!!! There's a FREE section too...!

Anyways, I'd sell it for a couple bucks (like maybe \$3.00 or something). But again it's more for VISIBILITY and people seeing what it is that you have designed that is COOL to play.