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Design inspirations for Road to Enlightenment
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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My upcoming game, Road to Enlightenment, owes a debt of gratitude to many other games and designers which provided ideas, inspiration and/or mechanics which led to the game coalescing as it did. This Geeklist recognizes and thanks those games while explaining the role they played in my game's development.
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1. Video Game: Civilization IV [Average Rating:8.40 Overall Rank:21]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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Road to Enlightenment came into being because I so enjoyed playing Civ4 yet was disappointed with how little attention they paid to the great people of history. I wanted to create a civilization game that deeply focused on those great people. So began the process of designing Road to Enlightenment.
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2. Board Game: Strat-O-Matic Hockey [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:2509]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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I have long enjoyed strategic sports games. As one of the core ways to represent the contributions and abilities of luminaries in Road to Enlightenment I used the method of Strat-O-Matic, rating people on a scale in key attributes relevant to the context they are performing in.
 
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3. Board Game: Magic: The Gathering [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:121]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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From the earliest designs the intention was to have a deck building element, where the luminaries would exist as individual cards and need to be planned, used and managed properly to win. This came directly from the tradition of games spawned by Magic: The Gathering.
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4. Board Game: Battlestar Galactica [Average Rating:7.83 Overall Rank:29]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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Having asymmetrical player characters - in the form of 17th century leaders - was important from the game's initial design. I shamelessly stole Battlestar Galactica's structure of giving each player character a benefit, penalty and once per game action that captures the essence of why they were important.
 
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5. Board Game: Diplomacy [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:356]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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The game ultimately playing as a "continental balance of power" owes a debt to Diplomacy, as I was playing it heavily during the design process. Negotiation and cooperation being crucial to consistent expansion, and needing to work with others to win, are hallmarks of RtE inspired by Diplomacy.
 
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6. Board Game: Shogun [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:79]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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The idea of laying cards down at the beginning of the turn with all of your actions, then revealing and executing them when it is your turn in the order was inspired by a similar mechanic in Shogun, which has arguably been my favourite board game over the last year or two.
 
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7. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:30] [Average Rating:7.78 Unranked]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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While deck building was part of the game prior to my exposure to Dominion, the final refinement of the mechanic does have Dominion to thank. Dominion is the only game on this list I really dislike but it did leave a footprint.
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8. Board Game: Here I Stand [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:83]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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Once Road to Enlightenment shifted from a more abstract track-based game to also including a map of Europe with concrete notions of war and conquest I referenced Here I Stand for support. If HiS can be an extremely popular game about arcane European history and take all day or longer to play, why can't Road to Enlightenment be similarly popular as a three hour game?
 
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9. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.12 Overall Rank:6]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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Any time I started to feel nervous that the theme of Road to Enlightenment would be an impediment to having success I reminded myself that a game about building an abstract farm in Europe is the top-rated game in the world and a smash-hit. By comparison, Rembrandt and Isaac Newton are positively sexy!
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10. Board Game: Road to Enlightenment [Average Rating:6.22 Overall Rank:4965]
Dirk Knemeyer
United States
Granville
Ohio
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And...it all resulted in Road to Enlightenment!
 
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