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New Game I'm working on called Fox in the Henhouse

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The Odd Fox
The Odd Fox's picture
Joined: 01/19/2017

Fox in the Henhouse is is a micro-game, for 2-4 players that can be played in 10-20 minutes. Each player is trying to accumulate the most Eggs (points) from their Hens. The Fox is a tricky scoundrel that shows up in all the wrong places and chases off the Hens and destroys their Eggs! It’s your job to keep the Fox out of your Henhouse and keep your hens safe so they can produce as many eggs as possible.

Quick Guide to set up
Number of Players
Cards in Play
2 Players: 7 cards
3 Players: 10 cards
4 Players: 14 cards

2 Player: 1 Fox, 1 Farmer, 1 Farmer’s Wife, 4 Hens (values 1-4)
3 Player: Add 1 Farmer’s Dog, and 2 additional Hens (values 1 & 3)
4 Player: All cards are in play: 2 Foxes, 1 Farmer, 1 Farmer’s Wife, 1 Farmer’s Dog, 1 Rooster, 8 Chickens (2 sets of values 1-4).

Detailed Setup
-2 Player-
Follow the quick setup guide for 2 players. The seven cards are shuffled together and three cards are given to each player. You may look at only one card and must leave the remaining two face down in front of you. These two cards are called your Henhouse. The remaining one card not belonging to either player is placed in the middle, facedown. This space between players is called the Field.

-3 Player-
After following the quick setup guide for 3 players the game is nearly identical to the 2 player set up as each player has one card in their hand and two cards, face down, in their Henhouse and 1 card face down in the Field.

-4 Player-
Follow the quick setup guide for 4 players. There will be two cards in the Field instead of one.

Rules and Gameplay
Each player is allowed to take one action on their turn. An action consists of taking a card and placing a card. You may draw one card from anywhere you choose (examples include your Henhouse, an opponent's Henhouse, an opponent’s hand or the Field). Once a card from one of these places has been selected you must discard one of the two cards now in your hand (yes, that means you can put the same card back from where it came or give your old card instead). After taking an action the next player is free to go and will also take an action. In a two player game a player may not take back a card that was taken from their hand in the previous turn.

When each player has completed one turn it is considered the end of a day. Four Season Cards, each with seven calendar calendar days will be provided so after all players have taken a turn then a token should be from Sunday to Monday etc. After the Saturday round is complete then all points are totaled up and players receive Eggs (points) accordingly. The first Season will be the Winter phase. Cards will be shuffled and redistributed for the Spring phase (days 1-7), and again for Summer and Autumn, each time players will total points and acquire Eggs at the end of a season. After the Fall/Autumn season players will count their total Eggs from all four seasons and the winner is the player with the most Eggs.

When the round has ended each player counts up the total value between their hand and their Henhouse. The winner is the player with the most points at the end of five rounds.

-1 if ending in your hand
If ending in your henhouse then negative double the value of any Hen in the same Henhouse. (Players cannot lose Eggs which have been earned in previous Seasons)

No points

Farmer’s Dog
No points

Farmer’s Wife
No points

If ending in your hand then double the value on the card (Have you ever hear that “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”?)
If ending in your henhouse then value on the card

0 points in hand
Negates value of Hens if in the Henhouse with the Rooster

Card Effects
The Fox will force you to discard a Hen, if you are currently holding one in your hand. You may not discard the Fox unless you are also holding the Farmer, the Farmer’s Wife, The Farmer’s Dog or the Rooster.

The Farmer will allow you to discard the Fox if you currently hold it in your hand.

The Farmer’s Wife will allow you to discard the Fox if you currently hold it in your hand. After discarding the Farmer’s Wife all players must choose a card from their Henhouse, without looking at it, and shift it to the player to their left.

The Farmer’s Dog will allow you to discard the Fox if you currently hold it in your hand. After discarding the Farmer’s Dog that player may swap two facedown cards of their choice without looking at them.

Rooster will allow you to discard the Fox if you currently hold it in your hand. The Rooster also negates the value of any Hen in the Henhouse with it.

Hens are worth points.

I'd love any thoughts on the game or even my description of the game. This will aid me in my creation of the rulebook. I'm planning on providing pics for the rulebook to assist with how to set up and play the game. Also, all the cards will have iconography on them to assist players in easily remembering what each card does without long text etc. I can post pictures later when I'm back at home.

BHFuturist's picture
Joined: 11/01/2008

I love clever memory games that are not too intensive, and the use of that hidden information is also clever!

With only 7 cards, I will make a prototype and test it with my girls, then tell you what I think.

@BHFuturist AKA -Eamon

The Odd Fox
The Odd Fox's picture
Joined: 01/19/2017
You're the best!

@BHFuturist - Eamon: Thanks! That would be wonderful! It's funny, even though this is my game design, my daughter typically destroys me at it. She has a skill set I just don't possess. I'd love to hear any feedback on your experience!

eejits's picture
Joined: 01/24/2017
Sounds intriguing! It

Sounds intriguing! It definitely sounds like a quick game that would be fun to play when the wee ones are bored for 5 mins. It could aid in maths and memory. Good stuff.

Having striking, bold imagery of each of the fun characters and iconography will certainly help the players (especially the younger ones).

Good luck with progressing this forward.


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