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Subject: Board vs. Tiles rss

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Robin Gibson
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I'm working on a design for a thematic pick-up-and-deliver game, and I keep running into this wall with the board.



Basically the game involves moving to one of the Mines, drawing a number of cubes from a bag, (determined by your characters' combined "Mining" skill) keeping the ones that match the colour of the mine, then delivering them to a town that had empty squares of that colour, earning points. (Which eventually win you the game)

Early on, I considered making the game board out of randomly placed tiles (Or even tiles that were revealed as the players moved into them, adding an exploration element to the game) But ultimately I settled on the board, because I was able to avoid any killer routes, (mine right beside a town) or places where players could become trapped. (One of the mechanisms of the game allows players to block tracks as they move through them)

I've changed a lot in the game since that decision though, and I'm at a point now where tiles are becoming more and more favorable. Players can blow eachother up, which takes care of the problem of getting trapped, and I'm working on a set of rules where towns stay full for longer, (Originally the board was cleared every round) so players would have to move around more, and killer routes won't stay killer forever.

So I could go either way. Tiles can be annoying, (Especially if somebody bumps the table) But on the other hand, it would make each game unique, and makes expanding the game much easier. The other issue is, I nearly have a finished game if I just stick with the board, but designing a bunch of tiles will drag out production even farther.

Your thoughts?
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chadgar24
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Is there a way to randomize certain parts of the board? maybe there is the general structure...town here, mine there. But the specifics of that mine or town or whatever can be placed at random with a card or tile that goes on top of the board.
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Sam Cook
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The only way to know for sure may be to make some prototype tiles and play a lot of games in different configurations. Even if a random configuration of rooms doesn't work out, you may find a more interesting layout that you can use for a final board.
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Russ Williams
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You could do the Power Grid approach and have the players play on some subset of board areas each game.

Or the Kingdom Builder approach of using a small number of large tiles.
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Matthew P
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What about a "structured" approach to a random map similar to Kingdom Builder. Each piece of the board could have the proper spacing of mines and towns, but when they are combined in different ways you can create an array of boards.
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chadgar24
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D4RKSH33P wrote:
What about a "structured" approach to a random map similar to Kingdom Builder. Each piece of the board could have the proper spacing of mines and towns, but when they are combined in different ways you can create an array of boards.


yeah that is what I meant above, I could not think of a good example, thank you
 
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Hammock Backpacker
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Take a peek at the board in Amerigo

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Matthew P
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chadgar24 wrote:
D4RKSH33P wrote:
What about a "structured" approach to a random map similar to Kingdom Builder. Each piece of the board could have the proper spacing of mines and towns, but when they are combined in different ways you can create an array of boards.


yeah that is what I meant above, I could not think of a good example, thank you


This actually similar to how some video games create procedurally generated maps. See this article on room generation in Spelunky: http://tinysubversions.com/spelunkyGen2/
 
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Jason Kotzur-Yang
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1 more vote for tiles and replayability!
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Lucas Smith
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Personally I would go for tiles! Variability would be important to me!
It might also be an issue of packaging: Tiles can maybe be packed into a smaller box!

Poll
Board or Tiles?
Board
Tiles
      20 answers
Poll created by smithlucas
 
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John A. White
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Board + Tiles... you control connections and 2 key hubs and let them set the other tiles on top... allows for new tile ideas.
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Robin Gibson
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Thanks everyone for the feedback, I'll get working on a set of hex tiles to try it out.

D4RKSH33P: Thanks for the link to the Spelunky thing, I've wondered how those levels were generated.

I think I'm going to go with 3.5-inch hex tiles. I'll keep you posted.
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Robin Gibson
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Here's a test I did of board generation:

The rules for this are: Players take turns drawing, then placing a tile.

The tile must make the most connections it possibly can, unless it would make two tiles of the same colour border eachother.

Placement begins with the Mercenary Guild (Yellow) and ends with the Escape Tunnel (Grey)

After the Escape Tunnel is placed, open connections can be closed with the three blank hexes if possible.

It's a little cumbersome, so I'd probably have a few starting maps in the rulebook, But the board isn't half bad...
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Robin Gibson
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And here's the starter board...
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Forrest & Ryan Driskel
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I think, as long as there is competition, having "killer routes" is fine. The players should be able to identify them and compensate. Of course, I don't know all the rules!
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John Breckenridge
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Are those two blue squares next to each other legal?
 
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