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Take a Hike! Take two

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voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
Take a Hike! Sample Trail Mat

Having received so many great suggestions from a few of you guys here, as well as from my nephew's Boy Scout Troop (Cobra Patrol), I have made some refinements to the game. It started as a basic idea to create a hiking trail game that would use interchangeable trail sections, rather than just one game board. This allows the game and trail to be totally different each time it is played. The image shows only nine of the ten mats, as I am working on the final, one which is a mountain mesa.
Below is the outline. It may seem like a lot of things happen along the trail, perhaps too many at first, but we played it with a group of Scouts the other night and the game play flowed smoothly, with very little confusion or questions, but some good suggestions for additional play spaces and the mechanics to make them work. We eliminated some of the ideas, as I still want to keep it somewhat simple, without having to be a mathematician or military strategist to play.
••••••••••
Take a Hike!
Take a hike on the backcountry trails to high adventure!
Ages 8 & up
2 - 4 Players

Object:
Be the first Hiker to conquer the backcountry trails from one mountain lodge to the other...
and back again, if you're up to it!

Components:
Ten 10” x10" interchangable Trail Mats (two Lodge sections and eight Trail sections.
Four 10” x 4” Backpacker Tracker Mats
Four Hiker Pawns (Joystick)
Ten Marker Tokens (Ring)
One 6-sided Die

Set-up:
Everyone agrees on how far of a hike to take. Each Trail Mat section represents 10 miles.
Both Lodge Mats must be used, so the shortest hike possible is 20 miles, the longest is 100
miles. Once the distance / number of Trail Mats has been decided, begin by placing down
one of the Lodge Mats. The first Hiker to reach the first Trail Connection (space with the Red
Dot) chooses the next Trail Mat section to add. They can continue on with their turn if they
still have moves remaining.
The completed trail can be layed out in a wide variety of configurations, allowing for a totally
different route each time the game is played. In addition the trail can be hiked from either
end and in both directions. Starting at one Lodge creates a very different hike than starting
from the opposite Lodge.

Game Play:
Each Hiker starts out from the Lodge with a basic supply of provisions: 2 Nylon Ropes,
2 First Aid Kits and 1 Ration of food / water per 10 miles to be hiked. Ex. If you have decided
to hike a total distance of 50 miles (5 Trail Mats) then each Hiker starts with 5 rations. Use
the Backpacker Tracker to keep a talley of your supplies by placing a Marker Token on the
appropriate spaces.
Youngest Hiker goes first. Roll the die to determine how many spaces to move. If you land
diretly on a marked space, follow the directions. No two Hikers can occupy the same space.
If you land on an occupied space on the trail, you must stop at the space behind them. Keep
hiking in the same general direction and remain on the tan path unless you come to a Trail
Fork or land on a Detour. Do not reverse direction unless instructed. First Hiker to reach the
second Lodge wins!
For an extended game with a new view, once you reach the second Lodge, hike the trail in
reverse back to the first Lodge.

Provisions:
• Rations - Rations can be used if a Hiker would like to re-roll the die in hopes of getting a
better number. 1 Ration per additional roll, up to a maximum of 3 rolls and choose the best
roll. It can be useful to bypass another Hiker, a tricky section of trail or land on a bonus
space. Hikers can use a Ration anywhere along the trail. Hikers are limited to carrying a
maximum of 15 Rations at one time.
• Nylon Rope - The Nylon Rope can be used whenever a Ladder or Zipline is encountered.
Normally, when you come to a Ladder or Zip Line, you must stop there and end your turn.
Hikers can choose to use 1 Rope per Ladder or Zipline and continue on with their move
without having to come to a stop. Hikers are limited to carrying a maximum of 7 Ropes at
oneime.
• First Aid Kit - The First Aid Kit can be used to heal an Injury. Normally, when you land on an
Injury space, you must wait 1 turn to heal. Hikers can choose to use 1 First Aid Kit Injury
without having to wait 1 turn to heal.
•••If one of a Hiker’s provisions reach 0 and they are instructed to lose or give a provision
which they don’t carry, that Hiker must go back 7 spaces and wait 1 turn.

Trail Spaces:
Positive •••
• Trail Sign - Go ahead 4 Spaces.
• Map and Compass – Go ahead 5 spaces.
• Camp - Wait 2 turns, double next roll.
• Energy Bar - Roll Again.
• Rations - Gain 1 Ration (Food / Water)
• Nylon Rope - Gain 1 Rope.
• First Aid Kit - Gain 1 First Aid Kit.
• Get 1 Ration from Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
• Get 1 Rope from Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
• Get 1 First Aid Kit from Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
* Canoe Portage - Carry your canoe briefly overland and return to lake.
• Go Ashore - Beach your canoe and gain 1 provision. Wait 1 turn and return to lake.
Negative •••
• Snake / Skunk on trail - Go back 2 spaces.
• Chased by Bear / Bees - Go back 3 spaces.
• Gather Firewood - Wait 1 turn.
• Give 1 Ration to Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
• Give 1 Rope to Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
• Give 1 First Aid Kit to Hiker who’s turn is next in order.
• Injury - Unavoidable Injuries take time to heal. Wait 1 turn when landing on an Injury space.
• Bear Steals Rations - Roll the die to determine how many rations the bear steals.
• Fallen Tree Detour - Landing on a Fallen Tree sends you on a short detour around it. Take
the yellow detour path only if you have landed on the Fallen Tree Detour, otherwise stay on
the tan path as normal.
• Landslide Detour - Landing on a Landslide sends you on a long detour around it. Take the
the yellow Landslide Detour, otherwise stay on the tan path as normal.
• Rocky Road / Quicksand / Deep Snow - Rocky trail, quicksand and deep snow slows your
progress. Move 1 space each turn until you have left the Rocky Road, Quicksand or Deep
Snow.
• Bridge – Rickety old footbridge slows your progress. Move 1 space each turn until you
have left the bridge.
• Water Crossing - Crossing the wide stream slows your progress. Move 2 spaces each turn
until you have left the water.
• Meadow - Soft marshy grass slows your progress until you have left the meadow.
• Leaky Canoe - Canoe springs a leak and slows your progress. Move 2 spaces next turn.
• Capsize Canoe – Your canoe has overturned and it takes time to right it. Wait 1 turn.
• Rainstorm / Snowstorm / Sandstorm - Bad weather suddenly moves in and you are forced
to go directly to the next campspot to sit it out. Wait 2 turns, double next roll.
• Flash Flood - A flash flood forces you to retreat until it subsides. Go back 2 spaces and
wait 1 turn.
• Forest Fire - A forset fire forces you retreat until it subsides. Go back 2 spaces and wait 2
turns.
Nuetral •••
• Shortcut - You must land directly on the shortcut in order to take it.
As with many spaces along the trail, a short cut can work both ways. It can either
send you forward or backward.
• Trail Fork - The trail splits into two different paths. The green path is longer, but safer. The
red path is shorter, but riskier. ALL hikers must stop at a Trail Fork and end their turn, even
if they have moves left. On their next turn, they must choose wich path they want to take
before they roll for moves.
• Load / Unload Canoe - A Canoe must be used to traverse the lake. When you come to a
Canoe, you must stop there and end your turn in order to load and unload the canoe, even
if you have moves left. On your next turn, continue as normal.
• Ladder - A rope ladder must be climbed up or down with care. When you come to a
ladder, you must stop there and immediately end your turn, even if you have moves left.
On your next turn, follow the directions of that ladder space. You can use 1 Climbing Rope
to continue on with your move without having to come to a stop.•
Zip Line - Zip lines (dotted lines) can carry you across the canyon. When you come to
the start of a zip line, you must stop there and end your turn, even if you have moves left.
On your next turn, follow the directions of that zip line space. You can use 1 Climbing Rope
to continue on with your move without having to come to a stop.
• Mystic Ruins - You venture into an ancient dwelling and are magically transported to
another space on the trail. Go directly to the Mystic Symbol space on that same Trail Mat.
• Mystic Symbol - Landing next to an old enchanted marking, you are magically transported
to another space on the trail. Go directly to the Mystic Ruins space on that same Trail Mat.

regzr
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Joined: 05/27/2012
A good adventure

I like the theme of your game. And the easy play.

I was just wondering how players interact during your game. It's a race and all setbacks come from the nature. Is there anything one can do to hinder one's opponent?

Maybe you like to get a glimpse of Wilderness
from Fryxgames.
http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/108637/wilderness

-regzr

voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
Player Interaction

The Hikers (players) all carry a certain amount of supplies - Rations, Nylon Ropes and First Aid Kits. These are used to overcome obstacles along the trail. There are spaces where you can either give or get a Ration, Rope or First Aid Kit from another Hiker. In real life, most of the setbacks along the trail do come from nature. A lone hiker does not really interact much with other hikers unless they meet up on the trail and share some jerky. But if they are in a competition with one another (ex. the "Amazing Race"), sharing willingly would probably not happen. I suppose there could be a "Trade" type of mechanic worked in, where if you are low or out of one type of supply, but heavy on another, you could barter with another Hiker and make a trade, but it seems like that sort of thing could slow down the play. Perhaps only if two Hikers land on the same space or next to each other. It is something worth considering, and if you or anyone has an idea for including more direct interaction among Hikers and still remain as close to an actual solo backpacking situation as possible, please feel free to toss it out there. That's why I come here. Keep in mind that I want it to remain family friendly. A bit of sabotage may work, as long as it is not too evil in nature. I don't want them outright stealing, or killing each other. Remember, one of my test groups is the Boy Scouts.
I took a look at "Wilderness". Thanx for that! It is funny how there are a few elements that are very close to what I am working on, and I have never seen that game before (there's sooo many). The triangular interchangeable landscapes tiles, for instance - I'm using square game mats, the tracking board for physical health - Mine keep a tally of your supplies (which was a suggestion that I got from this forum). The differences, which I think are important, are you don't have to fight for your life and you don't possibly die and then the game is over. Nice thing is that it may have a future worth developing further, if Wilderness is somewhat popular, though the target audience would be younger kids and families.
Any ideas?

questccg
questccg's picture
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Sent you some feedback

I sent you some feedback in regards to the shape of spaces on the board (obviously included a couple of ideas). Those are comments on the image you uploaded.

The only thing I find a little bit *off* is that you name 2 things *Mystic*:

1: Mystic Ruins
2: Mystic Symbol

I would instead use:

1: Mystic Ruins
2: Enchanted Symbol

Having two *Mystic* things that go to different places seems *arbitrary*. But otherwise the game seems cool...

voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
Feedback

Quest, You mentioned "some feedback in regards to the shape of spaces on the board".
Was there anything additional other than the "Mystic" spaces? I named them both Mystic as I wanted to tie them in with each other... One sends you to the other and vice versa. When I first hit on the idea of ancient ruins, I was thinking that whatever civilization built the dwelling also created the symbol, like a tribal marker or petroglyph. Changing their names is just a matter of a few key strokes and I may just do that.
I have been running this concept of trading that was previously brought up to increase direct player interaction and here is my idea:
If you are low or out of one type of provision (Rations, Ropes, or First Aid) you could barter with another Hiker and make a trade, such as "I'll trade you 1 rope for 3 rations" or whatever. Perhaps if two Hikers land on the same space or next to each other they can agree on a possible trade, or even better might be a few spots along the trail where there is a "Trading Post". Hikers landing on a trading post could announce that they want to make a trade with any of the other Hikers. Other hikers may not want to always trade with you. If there are any takers, a quick exchange could be made. If you really need to make a trade, you could stop moving at a trading post, make a trade and that ends your turn with no further movement.
Thoughts?

questccg
questccg's picture
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Joined: 04/16/2011
Yes about your tiles

voodoodog wrote:
Quest, You mentioned "some feedback in regards to the shape of spaces on the board".
Was there anything additional other than the "Mystic" spaces?

Yes - besides the "Mystic" spaces - comments on the image you uploaded:

http://www.bgdf.com/node/7309

voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
Expert advice!

Now see, this is why I come here! I am just a one man show going with the flow of development, and EXPERT ADVICE can make the difference between mediocre and outstanding. When I first began the initial seed of this game, I picked octagons for some reason or another as the shape of the trail spaces. Now that the original concept has expanded and taken on a life of it's own, largely in part to the suggestions I have received here, the game clarity would surely benefit from your revision. The space shape issue began to bother me a bit as well, once the addition of trail forks, detours, etc. came into play. The circle, square and octagon options solves that problem. The solution may have seemed obvious, and it here it was right in front of my face. Sometimes we can you can't see the forest through the trees - total pun intended!
I am going to do a revised version of two trail sections tonight and repost them separately for a better view of the route. Once I get a working model, I will set-up a new Print & Play version for anyone that wants to take a test spin and give me their feedback. Boy Scout groups are great, but I really would love to have a few of the experts here help me blaze the trail!
Addressing the question about playing surface size, The Game Crafter makes various sized game mats that I intend to use. 10" x 10" for each trail section and 4" x 10" for the tracking board. I printed out full size mockups for testing and you can lay the entire 100 miles (all ten mats) on a dining room table. It is actually quite impressive looking when the whole trail is laid out from end to end. Of course once a section has been completed by all hikers, that mat could be removed without affecting the game.
I would like to know your thoughts about the "Trading Post" concept to involve more interaction amongst the players.
I'm all ears...

voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
space shape revision

Quest made a great suggestion, as usual, in regards to the shape of the trail spaces, which I fully agree with. I have uploaded the new image of one section of trail. The old shapes were all hexagons. Now the white circles represent normal trail, green circles are safer trails, red are riskier, and yellow are detours. Octagons signal a mandatory stop and the squared circles (better term?) are trail connections.
The paths of movement are now much more clearly defined and I am real pleased with the new change. I have also added the "Trading Post", where hikers can make a quick barter to trade provisions.

questccg
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Joined: 04/16/2011
To consider...

voodoodog wrote:
I have also added the "Trading Post", where hikers can make a quick barter to trade provisions.

Like I said in the comment to the new map, maybe you might want to make the *Trading Post* a MANDATORY STOP rather than requiring luck for the feature. This would force players to see if they want to make trades and barter with other players. This would make the barter/trade game option have a more important role in the game.

Maybe the option (Trading Post) is that ANY players can barter/trade with each other kinda like "Okay everyone TRADE time... Does anyone want to barter/trade???"...

It also makes for an interesting CHOICE when deciding where to start the map: hmm do I start with the Trading Post before tackling the fork in the road or do I trade after going through it!

voodoodog
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Joined: 07/02/2012
Trading Post

I'm thinking that the Trading Post can be an optional stop, rather than a mandatory stop. There are enough spaces along the trail that hinder the Hiker's progression, or make them end their move, and I don't want it to be a game of start and stop. I feel that if a Hiker decides that it is worth ending their move for the option to make a trade, it becomes their choice and not a forced one. The idea is that a Hiker can come across a Trading Post space and continue moving, or if needed, they can stop at the Trading Post and declare that they are willing to gamble and make a trade with any other Hiker for provisions (ex. "One of my ropes for two of anybody's rations", etc.)
I am also renaming the three basic items of provisions to: "Rations, Ropes and Remedies", as I'm a big fan of the sing-song of alliteration. The First Aid Kit will now be an all encompassing concept that includes "Remedies" for any Injury that may be encountered along the trail.

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