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Game Idea, need help brainstorming :P

12 replies [Last post]
Joined: 03/23/2010

OK so i was grocery shopping and got an idea lol... the game is about grocery shopping.
I'm thinking it will be a 2 player game, and players will take a card from the grocery list deck and their job is to get the items seen on the list in the grocery, and both players will race who ever gets their list completed and goes to the cashier first wins. To make it more fun players can set traps that will either make the opposing player lose 1 of their item or skip a turn, and steal 1 item from them.

I'm stuck on these problems:

I'm thinking either a hex grid or a regular square board.
How will the players move to make it fair for the 2nd player because if i try by dice then the 1st player has the upper hand?
where will the players be placed? the opposite sides or in the same spot.

thnx for the help ^^

Joined: 11/05/2009
My ideas The grocery list is

My ideas
The grocery list is provided by the wife.
Hubby has to do the shopping.

There are distractions on the way to the supermarket. He has to pass the game store. He has to pass the sports cafe, and his favourite team is playing. He meets his friends in the street, they are going fishing. Inside the store he has to choose between a sixpack Buds and the toothpaste.

So hubby has limited resources in the form of Cash, Time and Fear of his wife. When the cash score is high and the Fear is Low he is prone to give in to Temptation. The lower the Cash and Time goes the Higher the Fear goes.

Temptations given in to count for victory points, but only if he manages to get the full list within budget, and gets home on time.

JHouse's picture
Joined: 04/03/2010
Grocery List

My two cents:

1. Square board - A lot easier to make aisles, and all supermarkets are set up in a grid anyway.

2. If the first player can get to an item on the first roll, then there's an issue maybe player 2 starts with a trap in play or in a different place in the store that is slightly closer to the items. If an item can't be reached on the first roll, then I wouldn't worry about it. Traps are ment to give a player an advantage and having a player start with a 2.5 movement lead isn't a big deal.

3. See above, and I don't really think it matters as far as game play, just aesthetics.

ilta's picture
Joined: 12/05/2008
A hex system only really

A hex system only really makes sense if facing is important and the field is wide open. So battlefields, for instance. But not supermarkets, which are laid out in a grid naturally.

I think you need to consider what sorts of decisions are the most critical at the supermarket. It's more than a race, where dice are the biggest factor -- for instance, you want to take advantage of sales, or get the items in your cart in such a way as to keep the ice cream from melting and the eggs from getting crushed, while making as few trips around the store as possible. Some items might provide bonuses in combination: a box of pasta and a jar of pasta sauce, for instance, or hotdogs, buns, and either ketchup or mustard.

Joined: 04/05/2010

New to the forum, but here would be my brainstorming contribution:

I would probably go with a squares instead of hexes. Just in the description it seemed like maybe a Monopoly type board where players simply continue going around until the game is complete (perhaps instead of "Go" you pass the checkout lane, and if you haven't completed getting everything on your list you have to keep going around). Having said that I think it would be interesting if the players had choices as to which different aisles they could go down, Cereals, Drinks, Snacks, Fruits & Vegetables, Butcher shop & etc.

Maybe each player gets dealt a hand of shopping items that constitutes their shopping list.

Perhaps additionally, there could be a deck of cards for each aisle. At certain squares down each aisle a player can pull a card and hope it matches a card in their hand. When all the cards match (they've gotten everything on their list), the next time they pass the checkout they win.

I like the trap ideas too. Maybe you can use some of the cards that don't match and throw them in the aisles so that a player can't move through them until they get cleaned up.

Just brainstorming ideas. Don't know if they helped.

Nix_'s picture
Joined: 09/23/2009

What if the price of the items was also an issue. If this was the case then players could spend time getting coupons to help them with the price of the items, but would risk not being done as quickly. I think it could be an interesting tradeoff.

richdurham's picture
Joined: 12/26/2009
Related to earlier comment...

That plays nicely with the earlier idea of the cash/time/fear economies. Waht also might play well into that is how those affect your movement rate. Why have dice be the primary movement rate determinant when fear motivates so well, too? The higher the fear of the wife, the faster the movement rate - but high fear also probably means lower cash (to getthe high fear) so while you can get to more coupons/groceries faster than your opponent, you are at higher risk of not being able to afford them.

In this case, perhaps dice are used to determine what is on sale that round, or what the price of a grocery is when you find it.

Joined: 03/09/2010
Supermarket Sweep?

When I first read this I was thinking "Supermarket Sweep: the Board Game."

One way you could handle it is to have only one of each item, and players would have to collect items before the other players get there. You could have big ticket items worth a lot of money, and you could have items that individually have low value, but as a part of a set, are worth a lot.

If it's just a two player game you could have players one and two alternate in going first.

Oh, and go with a square grid.

Joined: 11/16/2009

Like the other posters i agree that grid is the way to go

Who is your intended audience for this game? As good as the ideas are for the money/fear/time/movement speed it sounds like it might be getting dangerously close to being seen as to complicated for the casual gamer or as a family game.

I think the players should start at the same point because I think most grocery stores only have one entry way.

to balance who goes first you could make it so each players turn happens simultaneously or in rounds so long as there isn't a limited number of resources or you would have to make up a way to resolve the conflict of both players trying to acquire the same thing on the same turn. Maybe one of the traps will result in a victory of this or each player roles the dice and who ever had the highest was there first.

Nix_'s picture
Joined: 09/23/2009
As an alternative to rolling

As an alternative to rolling dice for movement a route planning mechanic could be used. One idea is to have players play direction cards at the beggining of the turn, and movement is simaltaneous.

I like the idea of having to organize your cart. A small playing board could be used that has 4 spots to place your groceries; big items would take two spaces, and you can only stack items on top of sturdier items (you don't want to put your milk on top of your bread).

As far as a win condition goes, instead of having players complete a list what if players were trying to gather a meal. A meal would consist of some kind of meat, some kind of grain, a drink, and a fruit or vegitable. After all some people go grocery shopping every day for what they are going to eat.

Joined: 07/28/2008
Heh, I had a similar idea but

Heh, I had a similar idea but thought to give it up for now, but I guess I don´t have to because you are doing the game :) I could share you the ideas I had in mind when I was thinking about that (never get anything else done but a list of items to put into a game)

I called it Supermarket rally (or something like that, can´t remember) and yes it was a game idea of players trying to pick up groceries in different places in a supermarket. The other ideas were:

Oh, I can´t find my notes now, but I remember that a player could move his pawn/cart OR nonplayer characters that moved differently depending on what they were: grannies, children, pickpocket (steals from your cart), truckdriver (very fast and dangerous - like a rook in a chess-kind thing). These non-player character movements idea is simply to block your opponents movement in a certain situations. I think that those old ladys can be really pain in the ass! :D

I´ll get back to this if I find that little notepad txt file somewhere, but maybe these little ideas help too.

Joined: 10/14/2009
Area map

Well, a square map i think its ok, but i give you another idea,
using a "area map", like Machiavelly o Diplomacy games,
the map is divided on areas or "provinces", each area has a card deck face down (random suffle), and the players can move to adyacent area only. Every area has a selected group of products of the supermarket or grocery shop. The player can take 2 cards from the deck on his area, every turn, and keep one or none. Each card has a product or grocery on it, with a quantity (weight), and a price, so the same product can be expensier or cheaper depends on the luck taking cards.
The player can choose between taking cards or moving to another area.
Alternative rule: the player can throw a dice, and it takes as cards as the dice rolled.

hope this helps!

Joined: 03/23/2010

thanks for all the replies everyone :D keeping up notes and designing the game already ^^

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