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Real time mechanisms

7 replies [Last post]
Joined: 09/12/2017

Real time games seem hard to make well. Weather with with a timed app or sand timers, there always seems to be too much chaos and or upkeep to be enjoyable.

Captain Sonar does a great job I think of this where the delay in actions is a result of actual thinking and making sure you are making the right moves while keeping a fast pace.

I am trying to add some sort of real time element to a game I’m working on but I can’t seem to find a good way to do it.

The concept is a coop kitchen game where each player takes on the role of a chef. The game is a set collection/ resource management concept wherein the chefs all work together grabbing and preparing the needed ingredients for a given recipe on the menu. However they can only carry 2 resources (bun, plate, burger patty etc...) at a time, one in each hand. The kitchen has counter space however where you can place your resources down for others to grab and continue helping in the cooking process.

The mechanics work for the shared space and confines of a kitchen, but I find there is no huddle required in the game that most kitchens embody. The game plays more of a thoughtful strategy game where players will take significant time planning their kitchen routes and efficient paths to share the ingredients and get the meals out in as few turns as possible but I’d like to implement a way for the players to feel more rushed. Where mistakes will be common but that is the challenge.

So I thought a real time element would help. But I’m not a fan of digital timers, and the best I’ve come up with is a sand timer for how many recipes they can get out in a goven time but I don’t feel that this mechanism has enough flair.

Any ideas would be great!

Looking for a fun real time mechanism for a cooperative kitchen cooking game beyond the basic use of a timer for the round to incite absence of huddle and frantic rush in the players.

Joined: 01/27/2017
Something in the style of the ol' classic...

Kitchen timer

Joined: 09/12/2017
Still the same

I like the idea of a buzzer timer over sand timers. But I’m thinking more of a time stalling mechanic like in Captain Sonar, rather than a straight time limit.

Joined: 01/27/2017
Didn't mean to be so terse

Sorry, that came off way more terse than I intended...

I was suggesting something in the style of a good ol' fashioned kitchen timer for a game set in the kitchen.

If you're into making circuitry, it can actually be an electric timer with start, stop, and pause functions. Bonus points if the knob is a servo that displays the time remaining (I doubt it could be rugged enough to let players twist this fake knob to set the timer).

A Raspberry Pi, Arduino, or even a LEGO Mindstorms brick could stand in for a prototype. You'd want to source something much cheaper for a mass-produced game.

Alternatively, it can be an honest-to-goodness mechanical timer with some kind of pause mechanism (push it and the main timer is held for 20 seconds or something).

Just a thought based more on the theme than the game mechanics. I'm not familiar with Captain Sonar.

Joined: 06/09/2017
hi. i have seen a couple of

i have seen a couple of versions of real time strategy over the years. from the computer game definition (ie the old red alert war games) that meant "your all playing against each other but at the same time" to the timed game version (ie mr funny face? i think thats what it was called) that meant "you have this much real time to do x". i think there are also games that are literal about the term as well ie if your character would take 1 hour to walk a mile in real life it takes that long in the game but i dont think I've seen that in a tabletop, mostly sandbox computer games.
both main versions dont really have any additional things you can add. obviously your game has other rules and mechanics but the "real time" bit really boils down to either "do it in this amount of time" or "do more/be more effective in this time than your opponent" ( or ai).
i think if you are going for the "do it in this time" version an egg timer fits the theme nicely. i second the mechanical version (over sand) as the ticking adds a sense of urgency.
if you want to make somthing flashy you could use, instead of a bell, somthing that looks like a toaster which pops toast up after x seconds. or a frying pan that flips a pancake.
cpt sonar seems to use version b. which can work with an ai (for co ops) but its much better as either a competitive game or a computer game as somthing needs to run the other player in real time.
the only other thing i can think of, and this is much more complicated than nessassary, is a soundtrack (a'la atmosfear). general restaurant sounds with orders coming in. practically i have no idea how you would implement this but im sure someone could write an app.

Joined: 01/27/2017
Is it one time period, or rolling timers?

Does the team have a certain amount of time to finish everything, or do orders roll in over time with their own deadlines? Rolling orders could come from a deck of cards, a DVD track, or any other source.

Something vaguely like this

Mechanical light timer

would let the players keep track of multiple orders. Place a colored flag at a certain spot (probably the six o'clock position) and remove it when that dish is served. Lose points if a flag makes it up to the twelve o'clock position, and something more drastic if it gets to the three o'clock or six o'clock positions.

Joined: 05/14/2019
You're looking for Kitchen
Joined: 09/12/2017
Kitchen Rush

Sorry thought I mentioned kitchen rush in the first post. That’s what I’m trying to get a bit away from, instead of a timed worker placement. I want it to be more collective hand management/ set collection.

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