Prototypes that never made it to full production.
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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On the occasional thrift-store jaunt, I have picked up games that I was certain I had never seen on BGG: partly because the altruistic side of me wants to contribute to make the database as complete as possible, partly because I might find a diamond in the rough. After digging through endless copies of Survivor and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, sometimes the unknown seems mighty appealing.

Looking over some of these bizarro purchases, they really seem to be prototypes of games that didn't make it into production -- a would-be game designer's dream to create the next great-American game. Unfortunately, in the case of the unproduced prototype, the dream fell flat, and the games faded into obscurity.

Please make additions to the list as to games that were prototyped, and may have even had small release, but never made it any further. This can also include some localized crapwagons (usually Monopoly-esque or Trivia games (see Trifles)) but I'd most like to stick to other prototypes that aren't just local ripoffs of regular-production games.
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1. Board Game: The Plaza! [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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My first find that I attributed to a prototype instead of a full-production game was this localized roll (er.. spin) and move game. Based on properties in the ritzy Kansas City shopping area, this game has a lot of the thematic elements of Monopoly, but isn't a Plaza-opoly direct ripoff. The components tell me that the game was probably never in high production, because the enameled horse-and-carriage player figures probably would have increased the per-game cost significantly over plastic pawns. The most problematic part about this game was that it came without any rules... so I have a box full of components, but no means to play.
 
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2. Board Game: Locution [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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I found this little party/group wordgame at the local thrift shop. According to the notes, it was created in a town a couple of miles away, and was part of an initial limited run of 1000 copies. Unfortunately, I doubt the game ever got beyond those initial 1000 copies, or whether there were actually 1000 copies made. I have this one away to Randy Cox in the Free* to a Good Home geeklist.
 
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3. Board Game: Snob [Average Rating:5.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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My mother picked this on up for me at a garage sale. This one seems slightly more viable as a full-production game, but the quality of the components says to me that the game would have been very expensive to produce, and therefore even more expensive to sell -- especially for another roll-and-move Monopoly-esque game. The information details this game as a self-published effort of the game's creator.
 
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4. Board Game: Picturesque Places in the Northland [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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Another localized Monopoly-esque game (I sense a theme here), except this one was a spectacular crapwagon. As the rules played out, there were absolutely no decisions to be made by the players. The dice rolls moved the pieces, and the game doled out or took money based on the state of game. I eventually took the pieces and the dice and threw the rest in the Dumpster.
 
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5. Board Game: Beachcomber [Average Rating:6.00 Unranked]
Daniel "Cahwyguy" Faigin
United States
Northridge
California
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Yet another limited edition, likely a vanity game.
 
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6. Board Game: Talengarde [Average Rating:7.50 Unranked]
Chad Winter
United States
Salt Lake City
Utah
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I picked this one up while the designer was demoing it in a local comic book store. He even signed it for me! I've never heard of or seen it again, since. As far as I know, I'm the only one who ever purchased it.

The components say it was self-published and, though a valiant effort and a decent little adventure game, it never made it.
 
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7. Board Game: Oil: The Slickest Game In Town [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Patrick Korner
Canada
Coquitlam
British Columbia
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I think this game actually made it into production, but it can't have been a very large production... Lots of little plastic three-lobed beads as markers in the game. Clearly a kamikaze design.

It's funny, though - I checked to see if it was added to the database here on a whim, and whaddaya know, there it is. What's odd, though, is that the one person who's rated it lives in Illinois. I would have bet large sums of money that this game would have been limited to the Vancouver area.
 
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8. Board Game: Political Assets [Average Rating:3.00 Unranked]
Drew Mcintyre
United States
Unspecified
Florida
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Found it at a yard sale, signed by the designer, unopend, I opened it but never played it yet.
 
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9. Board Game: A Gamut of Games [Average Rating:7.72 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.72 Unranked]
Tyler Tinsley
United States
Portland
Oregon
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Prototypes that never made it to full production. sounds like all the prototypes i have cooked up.
 
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10. Board Game: R.A.G. [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Lourdes Tallet
United States
Unspecified
Massachusetts
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Stumbled upon this one on eBay. Haven't tried it out, but it's a kooky-headline-game.
 
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11. Board Game: Miscellaneous Game Accessory [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:3760] [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:71]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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Not Cityscape, but rather Portcullis, the game to the right. I've never seen this one available anywhere, and it's not even in the database here on BGG. Anyone anywhere have any information on it?
 
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12. Board Game: The Great Space Drag Race [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Matthew Nadelhaft
Scotland
Edinburgh
Scotland
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I don't know if this game will ever be expanded into the full space race game it was intended to preview. Meanwhile, it's a fun, filler game, and a neat thing to own.
 
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13. Board Game: Decision 2000 [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Tony Nardo
United States
Ellicott City
Maryland
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Limited to a handmade run of 10 copies. Copy 9/10 was sold on eBay.

The designer did try to get this published, but had no success finding a company willing to take it.
 
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14. Board Game: Pirates & Plunder [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:9297]
Naturelich
Germany
Remscheid
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Pirates and Plunder is a stand-alone tile-laying game inspired by Carcassonne. The game is actually available for download at BGG (just go to the game entry itself).
Designers: Brian L. Bird, Richard Thames Rowan.

I can remember some discussion around getting this game produced. However, I have not seen it published - yet.
 
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15. Board Game: Candle Quest [Average Rating:6.97 Unranked]
Naturelich
Germany
Remscheid
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The Menorah Game is created by Yehuda Berlinger. This set-collection, auction, money management game is about Hannukah, a topic seldomly focused on in Board games (at least to my knowledge). I personally own a copy, but have to get it to the table once, soon...
 
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16. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:2240]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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I came across this one while working on some edits in the database. With the dearth of information from it, I guess it never went anywhere.
 
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17. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:2240]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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That appears to be the fate of this one as well...
 
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18. Board Game: Jungle Craze [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Jeff Bowers
United States
Lehi
Utah
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A friend gave it to me because of my interest in boardgames. Some friends of his created the game. I've never tried to play it, but it doesn't appear particularly engaging.
 
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19. Board Game: Looney Leo [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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Seemingly a prototype that was played by the designer, G. Schloesser, and a few others, before disappearing into obscurity.
 
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20. Board Game: Neighbors [Average Rating:1.84 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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Prototype or obscure? You be the judge, because there is next to no information on this one outside of a session report.
 
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21. Board Game: Dump [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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The game entry lists it as a prototype, and based on the dearth of information included, it seems that it never made it far beyond the prototypical stage.
 
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22. Board Game: Tai Chi [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Paul DeStefano
United States
Long Island
New York
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It's a Zendrum. www.zendrum.com
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There were between 3 and 7 of these created for presales purposes. Of those, only 2 had the proper 3D interlocking scoring tokens.

At least 2 were destroyed by over use during DragonCon'05.

I don't believe anyone outside the company actually left with any before the company ceased production of all games, which was the month this was due to go to full print.

I do NOT have a complete playable produced copy.

I'm guessing other employees of Adiken had the other copies, or they were lost during clean ups at DragonCon. There's a fair chance a player or two walked off with a deck.

At least 3 other members of BGG that I am aware of actually played a production ready prototype.
 
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23. Board Game: ChessMage: Deck of the Myriad Shards [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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BGG Entry has ambitious press-release information by designer/publisher, some artwork that would presumably been used in the finished game.... and then nothing. The page given as the homepage for the game is a big 404.
 
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24. Board Game: Free Choice [Average Rating:6.20 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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Seems that whenever there is an election, a new crop of political games will surface, but never get anywhere.
 
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25. Board Game: The People vs. O.J. Simpson Trivia Game [Average Rating:6.00 Unranked]
Scott A. Reed
United States
Lawrence
Kansas
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From the submitter, this game was apparently created to raise funds for the defense, but may not have entered actual production.
 
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