Thematic Solitaires for the Spare Time Challenged

A blog about solitaire games and how to design them. I'm your host, Morten, co-designer of solo modes for games such as Scythe, Gaia Project and Viticulture.

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The no-components approach - a guest post by Karel Titeca

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
Hi, my name is Karel, member of team Automa Factory. When I'm not working on Automa projects, I occasionally design a solo mode as a personal hobby project. For this summer’s hobby project, I restricted myself to creating an Automa using only the components that were already present in the game. I wanted the solo player to start playing without printing anything at all (apart from a player aid, maybe). Morten has kindly offered me the opportunity to share some of my behind-the-scenes experiences in this guest blog post.
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Fri Sep 10, 2021 9:13 am
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Why engine builders end just as they get going – or why we (almost) can’t have sandboxes

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
I’ve got everything lined up. My mines produce like crazy and the supersonic trains are ready to transport the resources to my maxed out number of fully upgraded factories. My next turn will be epic.

Wait what?!? The game is over? But I was just about to... Sigh.
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Mon Aug 16, 2021 8:49 am
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(Not a Thanksgiving) Thank You :-)

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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I’m normally not much for designated days where you have to be thankful, generous, or romantic on command. To me they can make such gestures less sincere. If I want to thank someone, I’ll do it when they do something I appreciate, if I see them doing something well, or at any other time. When seeing my wife or son warms my heart, I’ll tell them I love them. I don’t do it on command.

That’s of course just my subjective opinion and I’m not saying that such days are without merit. They can act as reminders to pause for a minute and think about people you appreciate instead of just going with the flow of everyday life. Yesterday’s Thanksgiving and writing to two awesome playtesters today (thank you Jamie Specht and Kevin Brown) reminded me how much I have to thank a lot of people for in the board gaming community.
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Fri Nov 27, 2020 3:25 pm
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The most delicious Automa ever made

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
In the immortal words of Forest Gump: ”Life is like a box of Belgian chocolate you never knew you were going to get.”

OK, that might be slightly paraphrased, but bear with me.
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Fri Oct 16, 2020 1:34 pm
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What is an Automa?

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
I’m often asked about what an Automa is and most times I’ve written the answer from scratch, which leads to answers of varied quality of answers and time wasted on my part. So, since there seems to be a lot of interest in the topic, I’ve decided to a blog post a once and for all definition (well, until I decided to tweak it ).
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Sun Oct 4, 2020 7:03 am
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The 2020 People’s Choice Top 200 Solo Games No Prize Contest

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
Here we are again, my dear friends, at the beginning of the solo event of the year, the People’s Choice Top 200 solo games.

As always, I’ll host a contest, where the winner gets to go home with the world famous No Prize™ award. Also as always, it can be picked up at my house somewhere in Europe on the 42nd of Febtember in the Year of the Penguin.
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Wed Sep 9, 2020 1:40 pm
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My top 10 solo and non-solo games – Part 2

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
Today I’ll finish my top 10 list – if you haven’t read part 1 then I suggest that you do so first.
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Fri Aug 14, 2020 11:58 am
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My top 10 solo and non-solo games – Part 1

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
A couple of months ago Jamey Stegmaier asked for my top 10 board games, because he was doing a YouTube series on the top 10s of the people closest to Stonemaier Games.

This blogpost is a tweaked version of Jamey’s video with my top 10, so if you watched that, then there’s nothing new to see here.
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Thu Aug 13, 2020 8:46 am
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Morten’s guide to the States of Siege series – Interlude: It’s alive!

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
A few days ago, VPG’s new owner, Dan Yarrington sent out a newsletter which as far as I know is the first time the new VPG has shown any signs of life since firing the old create staff.

By this time many of you probably already seen the news, but just to make sure that everybody who’re following this series I’ll repost the relevant parts.
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Mon Feb 3, 2020 1:29 pm
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Essen SPIEL 2019 is over – sign me up for 2020

Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Microbadge: Fan of Stonemaier GamesMicrobadge: 1 Player Guild - Together We Game AloneMicrobadge: Geoff EngelsteinMicrobadge: Level 17 BGG posterMicrobadge: Automa Factory fan
After three days at SPIEL in Essen I’m on my way home. While I got to meet all the people whose location I knew and I bought the games I wanted, I’m regretting that I didn’t have all four days this year.
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Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:44 pm
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