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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

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Anonymous

I just uploaded the rules and components for my zoo game. Please feel free to look at them and tell me what you think.

Rules are here

http://www.bgdf.com/files/My_Uploads/galeninjapan/Zoo%20game.doc

Components are here

http://www.bgdf.com/files/My_Uploads/galeninjapan/zoo%20cards.ppt

dr_Edge69
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

It seems like a nice game, but i think you should add something more than bidding in your game.

I think that the animal compatibility and cage size versus animal size is a good idea. But i don't think that it will be enough strategic for most players, because i think that the main focus of your game is on the bidding mechanism and maybe it wil feel a little dry.

If i was you i wont put the bidding and set collecting, the main mechanism in the game, but i would place more importance into the compatibility issues of different species and space management.

:) hope you don't hate me for my comment :)

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Thanks for the help, I really appreciate it.

I really like that idea. My one thing i want for this game is it needs to be simple enough for a 9 or 10 year old to play. Any ideas on how I can use your idea without making tha game overly complicated.

How about this idea (Just thought of it 8) )

Animals can never share the same cage as other species I.E. even snakes cannot share a cage with a turtle. Exception. You can buy walls to do this but each player has a limited number of walls.

phpbbadmin
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Thought

Princes of Florence has an interesting mechanic where buildings you buy have certain shapes, and each player has a specific sized grid that they place these shapes on. So needless to say careful planning is very necessary. This might be an interesting mechanic to use for your zoo game. Give each player a grid that represents their zoo, and have each different animal cage or concession stand or what have you use a specific size and shape. Like a tiger cage might be an L shape, or an elephant enclosure might be a large rectangle that takes up 10 squares on the grid, etc. The other option is to have generic sized cages (small, medium, large, extra large, etc). Each animal could have a range of cage sizes that they would tolerate with an ideal size where they would be happiest. You could then place these cages on your Zoo grid and put the animals within the cages.

Just some ideas.
-Darke

jwarrend
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

This looks like a cute enough little game. There's a *lot* of bidding, which may grow dull after a while, and I suspect you'll need to come up with something slightly more clever to get the animals out there. Furthermore, I think the starting prices for some of the animals may be way too high, but that will be something you'll find out quickly in playtesting.

One thing you might consider doing differently is, each round, setting out the available animals, and then bidding for turn order, then each player, in order, picks an animal and pays the printed price (or takes his turn per your existing recipe, or whatever). This will have some of the tension of bidding, but will reduce the number of bids required. "Do I pay for that Giraffe to deprive Jim, who I know wants it, even though I'd rather get the crocodile?"

This would also mitigate the effect whereby "I started a bid on my turn, but I didn't win, so now I don't get to do anything", which may be rather frustrating; maybe players could take 2 actions per turn?

I do like having to choose between opening the zoo, and thus having enough money to do things, versus building or acquiring animals, which provide scoring potential. That's very cute. Although, as I said above, being able to just buy an animal outright at the printed cost would seem to retain all of the interesting tension of the game, and would also make the game (a) faster and (b) less frustrating, so I would again strongly recommend simply bidding for turn order, or just jettisoning the bidding altogether; you don't really need it here!

You might also spice up your cards a bit by adding icons to indicate whether the animal is a bird, mammal, or reptile (this is obvious, of course, but it would help to have the icon to remember that the game differentiates between these). Also, it would be nice to have the first scoring/second scoring payouts printed on the animal cards as well. Any time you can put info on the cards or on a chart, always put the info on the cards if you can do so without cluttering them up.

Good luck with your game, I think it will be fun to play!

Best,

Jeff

RookieDesign
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

One small comment.

In the rules, I like to see the content of the box. This list all the items and their quantity. It help understand the game by having a quick look at all the component.

I like Darkhorse idea of different cage shape. For a different bidding technique look at Alhambra. In this game you have different currency to buy different building pieces.

Good luck.

dr_Edge69
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Quote:
For a different bidding technique look at Alhambra. In this game you have different currency to buy different building pieces.

Maybe the currency type can be fix to an animal, for exemple animal from africa are bought with african money etc...

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

All of these are great ideas and a few are obvious and I was going to add anyway. This is just the very very very first prototype, afterall.

About the bidding thing. I can see where you might be coming from. However, it is not always beneficial to go first. Sometimes you want to see what other people are doing. But I can see that bidding might get old fast.

What If I let the person with the least amount of animals go first?

jwarrend
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

"Bidding for turn order" could just mean that there are 5 markers numbered 1-5, and in bid order, you choose a token (ie, if you want to go last, you just choose the 5 token). Of course, you can use whatever player order selection method seems best.

My broader point was that your game is, in some sense, a management game; you need to balance making money (by opening the zoo) with setting yourself up to score (via buildings and animals). And I think that the tension that comes from that kind of decision making will be sustained even if you don't have bidding. The really nice thing about bidding is that it could allow you to get a popular animal by being willing to pay more for it, as opposed to in "my" version of the game where you could get closed out by someone going before you. That's why I advocated a "bid for turn order", so you retain the "if I really want something, I can pay enough to get it" effect.

Another option might be to have the "buy animals" turn action be "You can buy the animal for twice (or thrice, or whatever) the printed cost, OR you can place the animal up for auction with the printed cost being the starting bid". Of course, you'd need to adjust the values of everything after some playtesting. But this might add a risk-reward element whereby you can try to get an animal "on the cheap" but there's a risk that you won't get it at all.

Anyway, this is a nice, simple game that I think has a lot of potential. Keep at it!

-Jeff

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Ok I like your idea of bidding for turn order. I think I will go with for some of the reasons you have mentioned. It keeps the tnesion, If someone really really wants an animal they will bid more.

dr_Edge69
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Maybe one interresting variation for the theme, will be "noah's ark".

They're is a lot of animals that need to be save from the disaster, and their is different "Noah's" competiting to save the most animal and bring them on their boat.

You can use all of you mechanism and you'll make points when the boat a level of the boat is filled. That way you can even put some "male" and "female" animal that give bonus points if you get a couple.

Then do you will have less chances to be compared to zoosim :)

That's just an idea :)

Scurra
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Re: Player order. I've got a similar dilemma in one of my current games; I can adjust the player order later in the game according to how many units a player has in play (so the fewer units, the earlier they get to go.) However, this doesn't work for determining the initial player order (since everyone has no units!) and it's too strong to allow the first player to be determined randomly.
So I added a bidding round at the start of the game. And then ran into the other problem: who gets to bid first, and is bidding done in simple clockwise order?! :-)

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Good idea for a scenario. I own O Zoo Le Mio (ZooSim) I dont think there is much similarity beyond the theme.

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Scurra wrote:
Re: Player order. I've got a similar dilemma in one of my current games; I can adjust the player order later in the game according to how many units a player has in play (so the fewer units, the earlier they get to go.) However, this doesn't work for determining the initial player order (since everyone has no units!) and it's too strong to allow the first player to be determined randomly.
So I added a bidding round at the start of the game. And then ran into the other problem: who gets to bid first, and is bidding done in simple clockwise order?! :-)

You could do a secret bidding Where each player puts in there hand what they will bid and reveals at the same time.

Scurra
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I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

galeninjapan wrote:

You could do a secret bidding Where each player puts in their hand what they will bid and reveals at the same time.

I did consider this, but it doesn't work because there are too many issues about breaking ties (where do you break them from etc.)

(Sorry this isn't about your game now, so I'll try and make amends :-) One idea for your auction would be to use the Goa technique: put an animal up for auction, but the winner pays the person who put it up (or they pay the bank if they put it up.) That way, you have another revenue stream beyond just opening your zoo (you could just keep auctioning off animals, collect the money and build a theme-park (i.e. all non-animal attractions) instead ;-)

Anonymous
I uploaded the rules to my first game. ZOO-bilee

Ok I have taken all of your ides in to account and here are some of my changes.

-People bid on who goes first. This takes some of the repeatative bidding out of the game.

-Instead of having different cages. The Board (Zoo) consists of one 8X9 grid and building is now the main focus of the game.

-Animals must be seperated by wither roads or fences. Roads take up a 1x1 square and fences are placed in between squares. All cages must be conected to a road some how.

Now here is the big question. What should be allowed in a cage. A specific type of animal or all of that type? For example. Just a snake or all reptiles?

I think these changes shift the game too a strategic building game. Positive change.

Any more suggestions would be great! Thanks alot.

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