Skip to Content

Before I even start, several questions

3 replies [Last post]
X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013

So. Before I even start thinking of putting the rules in a manual, in a proper way.

Where can I find good guidelines in how to do this?
And what else do I need to think about before putting a manual together?

I often see people putting in a list of things that a player needs. Is this necessary?

What formats are best to use?

I noticed how I explained parts of the game twice.
So...Just moments ago. I decided to cut up my existing manual into smaller pieces. Somehow, I get the feeling. That this will help me putting the rules in the right part of the manual. And it will reduce the explanation??
Has any one have experience with something like this?

I have realized that I often can't get to the point. Is it because some parts of my game happen to have a huge amount of rules?

The rules are often very logical aspects that each occur on a uncommon basis. Stuff like what happens when you shoot upwards, or move through a swamp etc.
There is really a lot to think about during the game. Yet a player only needs about 25% of the given rules for their turn. But every rule will be needed at least once during the game.

Joined: 02/27/2016
A couple of good links to look at
X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013
Thanks, these 2 links are a

Thanks, these 2 links are a good help to start with.
A lot are obvious facts. But here and there, there are obvious facts that I didn't think of.

For example. I have often some advice for the player. But this belongs more or less in some sort of a strategy guide. I clearly need to weed them out in the manual.

I am also happy that the first link is an example of a battle game. The second link actually mentions proper language rules which I lack.


Things that I am unsure of:

Setting up pieces? (oops, I forgot)
Would the following do?


You can find your start location(s) in the missions manual. If you play a multi-player game instead, each player chooses a start location by the first turn order.
The start location and the 6 regions around this location are places where you may place your start units.
If you start with a Constructuion Yard. This structure is always placed in the centre of the 7 regions.

If not, what should I write?


Craig Stewart wrote:

Game Play

Here is where the details go. Every step needs to be documented. Explain it all. Do not explain it a bit and then say "see page five for more details" Why would you need to do that? I need the entire explanation right now; I don't want to flip back and forth.

Ehm, here is where I have a problem. I got an entire page with details on movement and placement (board effects). And an entire page with details on combat and board effects.
Follow his lead?
Simply making the first mission simple enough that the details are not needed. And details are added in the following missions. Thus keeping a learning curve. ??


Ryan Macklin wrote:

Use the second person. Talk to the active player. Never just “When a player…”, always ‘When you…” or “When any player…” But default to second person except where it causes a distinct lack of clarity or ruins the tone.

Didn't know this. I always thought that I should use he/she and the player. I guess, I can still point to "enemies" as "he/she". Or should I stick with, "your enemy"?
(I just changed the start location example above, according to this. It took me a while, so I got work to do.)

Joined: 02/27/2016

As I don't understand your game and, as you know, am new here I am
in no position to offer you advice. Can only tell you how I tackled
the Rules...which may or may not be of some help in your situation.

Discovered from play-testing early on that I had to be present and
non-playing at every session to guide players through the rules for
duration of the game. Made it my own number one golden rule then
that that all instructions would not exceed one single double/sided
sheet of standard size copying paper. First, I divided instructions
into three sections (a) Mission (b) Setup and (c) Rules. Had little problem fitting both Mission and Setup on one side of the sheet.But
the rules were major problem, so then I made own rule No.2....there
could not be more than 10 rules in the game, which definitely helped concentration. Now,at least, I could participate in the game. Had to change the game hugely to reduce the rules and over two years I
re-wrote the rules at least 100 times and probably much more...but
got there in the end. Strangely, instead of diminishing the game it
was actually much more improved. Now, I don't need to be present at
all and that has given me immense satisfaction.

Must approach it, I think, with completely open mind...and with no
Holy Grails or No Go areas...everything and anything can be
eliminated or changed. Implement ruthless brevity and simplicity
with no helful tips or explanations..players must deduce the
consequences for themselves. It is also relatively easy to remove
gender He/She in the rules by frequent use of the words Them, They
and Theirs.

Good luck with it

Syndicate content

forum | by Dr. Radut