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"Good" Game, but not "Awesome" Game

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BENagy
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https://www.dropbox.com/s/w29ftynl1fm1sve/Heist%20Print%20%26%20Play.zip

This is the Prototype (Full color and art Print & Play) for my game, Heist.

I have played it with others who like the idea, and I have done some blind playtesting. So far I have received all positive feedback on the game. However, the feedback has been "good" not "AWESOME GAME!". It doesn't feel "right" to me. Perhaps I'm being overly protective/sensitive about it, but the game just feels "wrong" to me, and I can't tell why.

I think the design may not be elegant enough. It feels stiff and trite. It's a party/drinking game (though it started very differently as a small strategy game), and perhaps because it is so different than what I had initially wanted is why it feels off. My partner has influenced the game quite a bit, so perhaps I am simply rejecting his perfectly good changes to the game, because I want it to be mine.

Not sure. I would greatly appreciate your experienced and talented eyes at looking on this and figuring out how it may be fixed/improved, or whether it feels solid as-is. I need the objectivity. Thanks a lot in advance! =)

Samarkand
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Joined: 03/25/2014
That's a competitive game,

That's a competitive game, right? If that's the case, with only 1 Kollect card, nobody else but the player who draws it can win. That's no fun. Am I making a mistake?

Some more quick comments:

1. Determining who goes first - while a smart way, it requires the players to know the names of the rooms to try and guess them. This leaves a new player confused.

2. How are the rooms ordered? - I had to go twice through the rules to figure out from the part "If at any time during set-up The Vault is revealed, move it to the end of the line" that they are placed in a line.

3. Timing - All players have 3 minutes to finish the game, but one slightly slower, indecisive and/or drunk player can spoil the game for everybody by taking too long. Maybe time the separate turns?

4. Shuffling with timing - Shuffling slows down the game, which is particularly problematic in a high-paced, timed games, and when players might have impaired coordination due to drinking. In fact, even the designers of Magic: The Gathering, where a 2-player competitive round of 2 or 3 games has a time limit of 50 minutes, have mentioned that they avoid making players shuffling whenever possible.

BENagy
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Joined: 09/25/2013
Thank you for your

Thank you for your reply!

There's only 1 Kollect card, but with Sabotage cards to steal cards from opponents, Trade Hand cards to swap hands, and the New Plans card that makes a player discard their hand, there are plenty of ways to stop an opponent from playing a Kollect card, and taking it for yourself.

Some quick responses:

1. Fair. Would changing it to read that you are choosing colors instead of room names be better? My vision was that when the cards were face up, each player would choose a room, then you turn them face down and shuffle. But you're right, my wording in the rules isn't clear.

2. Because the rooms are randomly shuffled, the order would be random, unless you revealed the Vault card which goes to the end. Is this also not clear?

3. Very true. Since it's billed as a party game, it currently relies on peer pressure to speed up your turn, but that may not cut it at the end of the day. Perhaps skipping turns if they take longer than 5-10 seconds?

4. Absolutely. I'm afraid I forgot to change that in the rule book. Our current build has players simply flipping the discard pile upside down to form the new deck.

Just spit balling, does anyone feel this would work better as a competitive game?

And thanks again so much for your feedback!

Samarkand
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Joined: 03/25/2014
What I meant in number 2 is

What I meant in number 2 is that you place the face down rooms in a line, one next to each other, forming the path that the players will have to go through to get to the Vault. That was not clear enough in the rules. If I was following the written rules I might not care about setting the room in a straight line and just throw them on the table, which will mess up the game.

On a similar note, I don't really see anything written about how you move on the board. It might look obvious, but it isn't for a new player.

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