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questccg's picture
Joined: 04/16/2011

Hi all,

I was thinking after my next venture (my 3rd game), I should look to find a theme that interests me: Pirates. But after doing a quick search on Board Game Geek... It looks like the theme is very *popular*!

I'm not certain what I could add to my game which would make it more interesting ... BUT my idea was to take the Deck-Building Game (DBG) I am currently working on and TRANSFORM it into a *Pirates game*...

I COULD actually do this... The game's mechanics would lend well from the DBG into a theme around Pirates. Obviously I would make *adjustments*. For example: instead of having *Starship crews*, I could have *Captains & their crews* and have some of the more infamous ones also...

Instead of "Space Missions", I could have things like "Treasure Hunts" or a special missions for Governors of various islands in the Caribbean, etc.

Fundamentally the game mechanics would resemble those of "Tradewars - Homeworld"... But the theme would be different!

Has anyone published a game and then decided to use a completely different theme on the game (sort of re-theme the game into another one)???

questccg's picture
Joined: 04/16/2011
Not just a face job

Note: I am not simply thinking about *RE-THEMING* the game... I am also thinking how I can alter the DBG to better suit a pirate theme. There are things that I would like to ADD to the game that would be in the spirit of a pirate oriented game.

Traz's picture
Joined: 04/06/2009
eazy peezy

Don't do pirates in the Caribbean... drop back 900 years and do Pirates of the Mediterranean! I don't think anybody has bothered to do the corsairs of the ancient world. The Greeks and Phoenicians had massive battles at sea. It only stands to reason that where steady shipping lanes existed - there were bandits. When on the high seas, we call them pirates. In any age.

For your re-theme you simply call them corsairs! A Viking option could be very cool...

As to re-theming... I do it all the time. I have two games that are so easy to re-theme I have a dozen versions waiting in the wings. I consider them more game 'systems' than anything else. Think of them as 'MONOPOLY' style in their ability to morph.

Joined: 02/16/2010
More than meets the eye.


On morphing games to fit themes; dive in! I do this on a regular basis to ensure that the products I am working on can accommodate current trends in the world of the geeks (like me)!

Two game themes that are hard for consumers to take note of right now are Zombies and Pirates. Even dungeon crawls (that now flood the market) have an easier time being noticed than these two themes which force potentially terrific games into the background because of market saturation.

If you’re having a difficult time coming up with a catchy or interesting theme for the game either dig deep or get help. When I need an artist I never try to sketch things out myself, I get an artist. If you’re having trouble creating a theme that fits current gamer culture, take a look at what’s trending (do your homework!).

An easy answer and a solid (attractive) theme for what’s hot right now would be Airships (if they are obscure to you simply Google Airship). Flesh this out with some ideas of your own and you could easily have steam punk pirate battles taking place between flying cities!

Side Note: Interesting factiod. In another of your posts you mentioned that war games have been around for hundreds of years. They have in fact been around for thousands of years(See sun Tzu "The art of war").

Keep on creating!


questccg's picture
Joined: 04/16/2011
X on Pirates!

Lofwyr wrote:
...An easy answer and a solid (attractive) theme for what’s hot right now would be Airships (if they are obscure to you simply Google Airship). Flesh this out with some ideas of your own and you could easily have steam punk pirate battles taking place between flying cities!

Zeppelins sound very WW2-ish. But I get how they could be combined with a "Steampunk" genre...

Wow, that kind of makes me think about another theme, namely during the end of WW2 just before the Nazis had built the V2 Rocket. My setting would be at that time during experimental projects that the Nazi would be conducted... Scrambling to find a way to win the war, the Nazis turn to experimental technology to try to win the war... I know this *dark time* was already explored in a couple video games... But may be worth looking into for the tabletop version of something along those lines.

I won't do *pirates*... Too many games about *pirates*.

Update: I think I have *nailed* down an interesting theme! One player plays the role of a Nazi Interrogator and the other players are allied soldiers that have been captured.

The Interrogator must use methods of persuasion to convince each of the soldiers to reveal their *mission*. Each player plays a faction such as The Americans, The British, the French, the Soviets, etc. The first player to be *persuaded* causes that faction to not earn a valour point; instead each of the other factions earn one valour point. At the end of the game, the faction with the highest valour points wins...

I would want the game to be a card game with dice (d6s). I will be drawing *INSPIRATION* from Clue and Mastermind (Don't worry, the game won't play the same way...) But who doesn't LOVE "Colonel Mustard" and "Mrs. White"! ;)

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