I've been working on a simple abstract game for a few weeks and I'm pretty happy with it so far.
This is where you come in. One major piece I'm still struggling with is the theme. So, I'm looking to the BGG community for ideas.
Some info about the game --> 2-6 player. The game begins with a tableau of 5 cards in a cross formation in the center of the table. On a player's turn, he plays a card adjacent to the other cards on the table and places cubes on cards (row or column)already in the formation (based on a number on the card). The cubes determine majority on the card. When enough cubes are on a card, it scores. The cubes on the scoring card move to adjacent cards, which often make those cards resolve as well, etc. Then, cards on the table no longer connected to the formation are slid to make 1 cohesive group of cards again. The player draws a card and play passes to the left. Here's a picture of it, in play.
The key ideas -> - Sliding, ever changing board configuration - Adding to something that explodes, or sinks, or something - Resources spread out throughout the game. When something is scored, some of the influence moves instead of being lost.
Some current thoughts on the theme --> - I'd like to avoid some of the more tired themes (high fantasy, generic armies, etc....)
- I'd like to find something family friendly, as I can see this game being introduced to non-gamers and younger gamers.
- Of course I'd like to match the theme to the mechanics of the game as much as possible.
Jellyfish... Do they re-generate (slide together)? Plankton collects on them..
Termites - Eat the wood then... (no sliding solution ops)
Schools of fish on a seamount (reef hill) would have this effect. you could make async player abilities, sharks... no not sharks.. Cod, Tuna, mahi mahi, wahoo or Mackerel. Pick a set of equals on the food chain. (sliding is swimming when overpopulated then rushing back into the best spot because they all vacated)
Vegas Hotels!!! You do something to them. A. Populate them B. Investigate them (negative) maybe place on stuff you want gone? C. Invest in them
Async maybe One guy owns, one guy builds, one guy is player, one guy is the city police.
Then you BLOW THEM UP. Now the other hotel is the prime! Maybe instead of Moving the center is PRIME and the top/bottom are on the strip.
On a players turn they pick what card slides in first/second then a hotel is imploded.
Hipster fashion. When too many other hipsters are wearing the same thing, they feel too main stream and change their fashion, but some of them keep the old fashion because changing fashion would be too main stream.
It sounds like you've got a really neat and compact game engine going there. Care to elaborate a bit on how it works? What triggers these shifts and how are the cubes on the cards distributed (on each round, as well as while removing a card from the board)?
I'm particularly fascinated with the shifting and how that (presumably) can upset the player's relative scores. I'd like to use something similar to emulate politics, so I'm keen to learn what your system can do.
Maybe it isn't family friendly, but my first through was viral infection. The cards are cells, the cubes are viruses. When too many viruses are formed within a cell, it bursts and infects other nearby cells.
The only question mechanically is how playing cards to the field infects other cards in the first place.
Well it looks like the decision has been made, but I'm still going to throw in my idea.
It could represent a puzzle box, so when all the cubes are filled in on a card that code has been entered and another part of the box snaps into place. I'm taking the president's desk from national treasure two as inspiration for this
Though I do really like the frog with the battle-axe...
I think I'll have time to give it a shot sometime this week. However, the pdf doesn't list what the distribution of the various scoring Lily Pad cards should be? Also, if you have a pdf with print-and-cut-ready cards that'd be very nice for testers.
Another thing that I noticed was that the game may require up to 110 markers in various colors. While I think I have that in stock, that is still a lot of markers and it may turn off potential testers and publishers.