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Playtesters wanted for Sensational Stories

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Momerath's picture
Joined: 01/16/2009

I am looking for playtesters for Sensational Stories, a light party game about assembling cards into hilarious tabloid headlines and then voting on them. The voting mechanic is the meat of the game - you get points (subscriptions) when people vote for your headline. However, you also get points for voting for a popular headline! The objective is to win the most new subscribers for your tabloid rag by the end of the game. It really is that simple, and if you are looking for a complicated financial simulation of the tabloid magazine industry then look elsewhere. If, however, the prospect of hand-crafting sensational news headlines and sharing them with friends sounds like something up your alley, then read on!

The game is already set up and ready to sell on I am holding off on publication only because I am a perfectionist who would like some sort of constructive criticism before I invest a little piece of myself in my game and it is rejected by the Board Game Geek community. Yes, I really am that insecure! Plus, it seems like the professional thing to do.

What will my playtesters get in return for their services? Only a crisp, colorful, professional-looking card game which they are under no obligation to return. I will order and mail the thing myself. My expectations are that my playtesters (this game supports 3-5 players) will play through the game twice and report on their experiences.

Here are the specifics of the game:
# of players: 3-5
age range: 8+ (basic reading ability required)
time investment: 30-60 minutes

If you're interested, send me a PM.

Joined: 07/28/2008
Man Bites Dog

I hate to break it to you Momerath, but there's already a newspaper headline game exactly like this in print.

Check this link to see more.

Basically you get dealt five cards and need to make a headline from those cards. Each has a value and the highest 'value' (usually the funniest) headline wins the round. I guess you're point of difference will be the voting mechanic to pick the headline, rather than a set point value to the card itself.

I like the idea that you get points for voting for the best headline, it should encourage players to actually vote for the best.

I'd be interested to see how it plays compared to man bites dog. Feel free to PM me if no on else picks you up on your offer of Playtesting. I'll give it a go.

Joined: 02/22/2010
Do you know a game called Man

Do you know a game called Man bites dog?
Anyways, we're in.

Momerath's picture
Joined: 01/16/2009
Yes, I am familiar with Man

Yes, I am familiar with Man Bites Dog. That was even the operating title of the game at one point, before I did a search on and discovered that there was a similar game with that very title! I guess there are only so many good print-media themed titles out there.

I've never played MBD, but from what I've been able to gather the points are printed on the cards like in Scrabble. Your headline can be disqualified by other players if it is ruled to be "nonsense", but there is no particular reward for being creative or funny. It's a very unstructured, arbitrary experience, which is why it isn't ranked particularly high on BGG.

Despite obvious overlap in theme and structure, I don't think Sensational Stories (SS) will play much like MBD. The voting mechanic rewards creativity, humor, salesmanship and good taste - rather than using all of your cards. In SS you have a bit more control over your final hand, whereas in MBD it is purely luck of the draw. And there are some nice innovations in the cards themselves that make them easier to handle, scan, and read from any angle.

I'm still convinced that two headline-making games can co-exist on the market, especially when they play so differently. How many "loot a dungeon and get out alive" games are there, anyway?

I'm back from vacation and ready to mail out some games! These things should be ready to move in the next few days.

Joined: 02/05/2012
Hi - I don't think that there

Hi -

I don't think that there is any need to worry about the existence of MBD. The games, from their descriptions, obviously differ in significant ways, and any worthwhile theme is going to have more than one game exploiting it, anyways.

Your game sounds fun (that is important), and well thought out. We normally play 2 player games around here, but I can recruit a third player for whom this style of game sounds just up her alley.

I'll send you a mail with my address. If you want to send out a copy, I can commit to several plays with notes. I'd like to see this game be successful.

hotsoup's picture
Joined: 08/28/2009
I'd definitely like to

I'd definitely like to playtest this game. I'll send you a PM.

Joined: 01/17/2011
Voting is fun

Don't be concerned about potential comparisons to MBD.

I have a copy of MBD, and when we play we ditch the official rules and play by our house rules which are similar to the description you gave for SS. So take that as a thumbs up that I think the premise for your rules is a good one. Voting on your favorites is more fun than just mashing together the highest scoring cards.


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