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Quest Adventure Cards(tm) — Not just about "Set Collection"

Recently I was "again" inspired by the original "Set Collection" game but wanted more "innovative" mechanics to go along with the basic mechanic present in the original game.

My thoughts turned to "dice" games which invoke a sense of "LUCK". And I pondered on HOW the "Set Collection" mechanic was also luck-based too.

And then I had an interesting thought: what if the "Set Collection" was COMBINED with a "Push-Your-Luck" (PYL) mechanic?!?!

Interesting! So instead of "Collecting Sets", you'd be earning resources to help COMPLETE the Quest in the FASTEST time. With the Push-Your-Luck mechanic, this means that each time you draw a additional card from your "Development" Deck, you come one card closer to the "Re-Shuffle" card which when uncovered would lose your present progress towards winning a card.

It would be a 2 Player Duel: one player the Hero, the other player the Terror. And of course, Quest Fragments for both sides, some common and others different!

I know, I've been "dancing around" this design for a while... Some of the early ideas I thought might have promise, have turned out to be a little too predictable. Others were too similar to the original First Edition.

I feel like I'm onto something ... but not yet 100% there. Again only time will tell if this is a good direction for the product. For now I will ponder further on this PYL aspect and how to introduce more levels of varying strategy...



Trying to "focus" the design and ...

If the design was more "focused", this would mean that there would be LESS of a need for "So Many Quests"! In the original game there were ten (10). Each with ten (10) cards each, meaning a total of 100 cards.

With the PYL, I think I can safely design the game with ONLY THREE (3) Quests! They may be a little more complexe to design and may require more art ... but NO WAY 100 cards!

Perhaps if the Quests now had 12 Fragments, 6 Hero and 6 Terror. And then only three (3) Quests ... than means 36 Cards. And of course, I would TRY to recycle as much of the Original Art as possible. So maybe only 20 pieces of "NEW" Art. TBD.

But truth be told, I'm going to see if I can "streamline" this idea and ponder more about the design.

More on this NEXT WEEK (and maybe during the weekend; if I have time!)

Did some minor prototyping ... and card edits too!

And it seems very feasible to introduce a PYL mechanic, in addition to "card abilities" that affect the bonuses or penalties that may occur when trying to put together all the Quest Fragments together!

I was just trying to see what the outcome of the images would look like with the "NEW" layout and would there be room for abilities and "resources" too.

The "Dwarven Mine" was my first (and to date only) experience in re-formatting the layout a bit to see how I can better use the space.

I also devised that "resources" should follow a sort of like a Rainbow instead of using the color wheel.

The Rainbow is: Red (+3), Orange (+2), Yellow (+1), Green (+2), Blue (+3).

It feels much more "intuitive" and scoring is easier to compute...

Otherwise with the color wheel, all Primary colors = 1 Point and all Secondary colors = 2 Points. I didn't really like this, since it made it difficult to UPGRADE or DOWNGRADE from one color to another.

I'm not sure about "Purple". It would be possible to introduce a 6th color ... but then the point values need adjustment. Will need to think about this. In this case it would be:

Red (+3), Orange (+2), Yellow (+1), Green (+1), Blue (+2), Purple (+3).

And to the LEFT would be "Physical" and to the RIGHT would be "Ethereal".

We'll see more thinking needs to be done. I like having the Purple as part of the spectrum and it's the bridge between colors too. So if you UPGRADE Purple by +1, it comes Red! Yeah, that's pretty cool... More strategy in terms of what operations that you wish to perform with your "resources".

Enough for tonight... Some more thoughts tomorrow!

Sample Quest AC2 - Lair card preview

This is a preview of the "Working Copy" of the Second Edition of Quest. It shows off the different elements and stats that previously did not exist in the First Edition.


Obviously if you compare the OLD cards with this NEW one... There are many similarities. And obviously there is a reason for this: I wanted people to recognize the Brand and Product and be EXCITED that a "new version" with more strategic depth will be coming out...

How soon, it's still only ONE (1) card. And there are several mechanics that need to be playtested and then we can determine if the game can stand on it's own.

But this EARLY preview gives you an IDEA about the mechanics, strategy, stats and abilities that I am planning to use for Quest AC2.

Feel free to comment/ask questions/give feedback/have concerns...!

From the sample...

You can now tell that this game is a "Set Collection", "Push-Your-Luck", "Engine Building" game. It's not really "Deck Building" because each of your Heroes that you will be using to complete the quests will allow different "Role/Action Selection".

I was originally going to do: Heroes vs. Terrors. But after some reflection, I'm not 100% sold on the idea.

Notice this is all very early. And more just some "design previews" about what Mechanic that I want to use in the game to offer a unique experience.

I THINK it will be about "Rival Heroes" and multiple players embarking on the same journey ... but the Quest Fragments will be Randomized making each Quest UNIQUE for each player.

More thought needs to be put into the design. Again just an early SAMPLE.

Note #1: This version is bringing a whole BUNCH of STUFF from all kinds of sources of inspiration and I really want the game to FEEL like it is a JOURNEY (A Quest)... So that it truly matches the name of the game "Quest Adventure Cards(tm)"!

The sources of inspiration vary from the Original game "Quest AC1" to "Texas Hold'em Poker" (for example which is more about player layout).

I'm not holding back anything for this VERSION of the game. Having learnt so much through the years, I always WANTED to "refine" Quest into something more "Adventurous". Ergo the name.

Note #2: The First Edition was also bilingual: English and French... Obviously with more stats and an ability makes it impossible to do the same with this version. No worries... There is no need to translate to French ... especially when we think about the volume of distribution of the game!

Right now, I'm thinking it will be limited... So we'll see.

Note #3: For example, one of the outstanding design issues is IF the five (5) Quest Fragments should be "revealed" which would mean players could STRATEGIZE over the entire quest. This means that the Engine Building aspect would be more predictable and allow players to properly PLAN how to use their resources, the order of their Fragments, how to hinder their opponent, etc.

So I am leaning on SEEING the "entire" Quest Timeline... And of course you would see your opponents timeline too. That's what I was thinking about Poker (hidden cards vs. revealed ones). In Poker you don't know what card comes next... But you play according to ODDS.

By revealing both player's Quest Fragments ... as mentioned, allows the Engine Building to be more prevalent (and offers better insight how you should play the quest timeline).

There will be FOUR (4) Suits

As the "Dwarven Mine" depicts the "Stockpile" suit, this means that you must "accumulate" the pre-determined types of resources. In the case of the mine you must have 4 "Yellow" and 1 "Orange" in your "Stockpile". You do not need to expend them, just to have accumulated them.

The second set is the "Garrison" suit, it comes in two (2) flavors: physical and ethereal. In both cases, you must "expend" the pre-determined types of resources. So say it had three (3) "Red" resources, you would need to accumulate and expend three (3) "Red" resources. Expended resources go back into the shared pool of resources. The equivalent would be: "You need to PAY three (3) 'Red' resources."

The third set is the "Convert" suit. Convert means exactly that: You have taken a resource "A" and transform them from one resource to another. The resource that you transform (in our case "A"), is lost to your "Stockpile" during the process. So say it had three "Yellow" resources and three "Red" resources. You would need to Upgrade a "Yellow" to make an "Orange" and the again to make a "Red"! When the "Yellow" gets Upgraded to the "Orange" a "Yellow" resources is "expended". Same goes for the "Orange" resource when it becomes "Red". In the end, your "Stockpile" would be increased by three (3) "Red" resources.

The last set is the "Barter" which can be though of as "Trade". What I mean is that whatever the requirement on the Left-Hand-Side (LHS) gets converted to the resources on the Right-Hand-Side (RHS). Think of it as being an "exchange" from one set to another set of resources. In the end, you will "expend" the resources on the LHS and you will "stockpile" the resources on the RHS.

That's everything that is needed by the four (4) suits. I've worked hard to make them as "understandable" as possible.

Sample Equipment card for Quest #1

This is a preview of another card for the Second Edition of Quest. It shows off the different elements and stats that previously did not exist in the First Edition (including the Engine Building components which are very important...)

So the card itself allows you to convert ANY one (1) "resource". And to complete the Quest Fragment, you must convert two (2) "Yellow" resources into two (2) "Orange" resources.

Pretty straight-forward once you know the symbology. For the "Fighter" class this is very obvious from the order of the colors. But other classes may have a harder time completing this Quest, because it is composed of Physical Fragments.

Sample Treasure card for Quest #1

Here is another preview of a card for the Second Edition of Quest. It shows off the different elements and stats that previously did not exist in the First Edition (including the Engine Building components which are very important...)

So this card may trade four (4) "Yellow" for one (1) other resource. The Quest Fragment allows are player to convert two (2) "Yellow" and two (2) "Orange" resources into one (1) "Red" resources. It's a very costly operation.

Came up with an "interesting" concept

I was originally thinking that all cards would be played in one (1) group unless a card specifically states otherwise. This was too restrictive. So I was left with thinking of a way to create "card groups" and I did not have a solution to this problem.

Today I got some inspiration that instead of "forcing" players to create "card groups", players could have the "FREEDOM" of creating them at will.

Hold-on now...! Are you saying players would decide??? Yes ... but there are a couple rules:

1. First each time you select a "Group" from the table, ALL the cards in the group go "back into your hand". If you have more than your classes card limit, you will be forced to "discard" cards.

2. A group consists of three (3) or more cards. Two (2) or less and those card must "remain" on the table until a third card is played into the group.

What this does is set-up an interesting dichotomy. First thing is that you will be at will grouping cards into "logical" sets to best fit your engine. Secondly you will be ensuring that a balance of cards and abilities/engine components are configured to work TOGETHER. But all at the same time being completely "loose" to create the groupings each player sees fit (or appropriate).

This is a "critical" component to the design: grouping of cards.

As such this "FREE" will approach makes it much more interesting to play the game and advance further in more "abstract" set collection, rather than "explicitly" requiring a "Card A" or "Card B" to be together.

Please feel free to share your thoughts/concerns/questions/feedback/etc.


Note: This will "encourage" the production of sets (as a Set Collection mechanic in-spirit with the original game) but allow them to be dynamic and player controlled.

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blog | by Dr. Radut