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Very light resource management card game

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designbomb's picture
Joined: 07/22/2013
player mat concept
player mat concept 1

Hello! I'm pretty new here... hoping to get some input on my design idea below? Thanks everybody!

I have been developing a 2 player card game now for over a year, and it's slowly evolved into a very light resource management / worker placement game that helps fit with the theme of the game. Originally it was going to be ALL card based.

To give you a rundown, you play a king who is controlling his kingdom and using the 3 main resources to make moves in the game. The game is played with a small player mat which is your castle and markers that make up your resources and where to place cards on the outside of your kingdom. If you reference the picture I've attached you can see what I've sketched up as a concept.

On your kingdom mat, you can place heroes in the 3 slots available at the top, and your buildings in the back 3 slots available. On the 2 sides of the mat you can place adventure cards. The game will feature 4 main types of cards. Heroes, Buildings, Adventures, and Items which will be played on heroes, or used as instant actions in the game.

Your 3 types of resources are your available actions to take during your turn. Each resource will be used for the 3 main cards. Pixels = buildings, morale = heroes, gold = items. These resources will be used to PLACE any cards you have in your hand. You are limited at the beginning to these 3 actions. If you place all 3 resources on your castle, you skip your turn completely and gain any extra resource token of your choice to allow for more actions. Each resource can only be maxed out by 3.

The hero cards that you place will yield matching meeples that will act as a secondary resource. You can then use heroes to go on adventure cards, use them to attack the other player's buildings, heroes, etc.

The adventure cards will be where you go to get victory points. Some of the buildings will give you immediate 2 victory points each, while heroes will give you immediate 1 victory point each. But the larger quests you go on will yield larger results and better victory points.

My problems / questions I have with the game development so far, especially with the mechanics.

1) Will the resource management work effectively in such a light game?

2) What is the winning condition? I originally was going to make the player have health on the castle, and you had to knock it out. But now, I'm leaning more towards to competing kingdoms who are trying to get the most victory points. But how do I do that? How can I make it interesting enough? Hide the victory points? Some victory points are obviously known such as the buildings and heroes, but maybe the adventures you go on have hidden victory points that the other player can't see? Much like a game of Catan where you can clearly see the points on the table, but some players may be hiding MORE victory points, leading to victory.

3) Should the resource tokens be WHITE one-sided tokens that you place as your action but on the blank side so the other player can NOT see what you're doing? That way both players at the beginning of a round will place their resources, deciding what to do, and then they reveal at the same time what the tokens are. Because some resources tokens can have multiple uses. You can use a pixel token on a hero card to give him defense, or money token on a thief to allow him to steal a card from a player?

4) What's to stop a player from just skipping most of their first turns to just invest in the kingdom to get more resources? Can the other player attack your resources? Say you have 3 morale tokens, 2 pixel tokens and 2 money tokens. Can the other player attack those tokens and remove them from your kingdom so you have to get them back?

5) Could this be made into a 4 player game? What would have to be put into place to stop players from jumping on the player in the lead?

Thanks for all of your input! Also, this game will be pixel art style themed like an old 16 bit RPG game. In my world, Pixels are like magic, used to create or destroy.

- Derek

designbomb's picture
Joined: 07/22/2013
Can anybody chime in with

Can anybody chime in with their thoughts? I'd love to get some feedback from the community...

X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013

Hello Derek,

I think it is a classic case of TLDR topic.
And if I answer it, chances are high your topic is doomed too. ;)

Even though you explain everything. Then you ask all the questions... This is not how most people could help. There is a lot to take in. I often don't see my questions answered either. Try to peek interest first. And know the people a bit.

Here are my answers:

1) This is a question of "is it fun? The way resources are handled?". Playtest is what you need. If you want people to answer the question, supply them with something to work with.

2) If you base it on VP, hiding as much as possible, is your only option.

3) To keep "fog of war" going. If a resource is unknown, that is a start. But you also need 2 or more options per piece that receives the unknown resource.
For example:
1 resource:
2 resources:
wood+wood=better shield,
iron+iron=better sword.
I also suggest that you somehow have empty resources for each resource that a player can place. That way there are 5 options possible for other players to guess.

4) You only have a game if there is interaction between players. So you need to increase this interaction if needed. Or else it is just a race to who knows the fastest way to victory.

5) Have no idea for this question. Personnally. I like all vs 1. As long as it happens in a fair way.

JewellGames's picture
Joined: 06/03/2012
Check out Province which has

Check out Province which has some mechanic similarities to your game and see how they handle scoring and win conditions.

designbomb's picture
Joined: 07/22/2013
Hey thanks so much. I just

Hey thanks so much. I just checked out that game, Province. That game looks incredible. Such a great game jam packed into such a small package. I also love the goals you can get. I think it's sorta similar in layout to my game with placing buildings, but the resource mechanic is much different in my game.

As for all of my questions answered - thank you! I believe that you helped out significantly.

This is all great stuff to ponder about. I will try to update with progress. I want to try to get a new prototype on the table before Christmas so I can start playtesting.

Any other comments are welcome - and yes, I am long winded, and sorry for the long posts. :P

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