Javier Martin
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UPDATE: The game is now contest-ready.


Downloads

Color version
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRbEdtVVhKOWExR1E...

Printer-Friendly version
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRcmZETXJFb19WN3c...

Rules:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRcEdCVlNJQTBlZ3c...


This game has been created for the 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest.

Stick, Stones and Dragonflame is a 2P micro-game of trashing, bluffing and laughing in which each player attempts to destroy the castle of their sworn enemy. It's suitable for players of all ages, uses minimal components and plays in around 15 minutes. After my experience with the game, it is my hope that it will bring much riotous laughter to players and dissolve many a friendship.

What will you need to play?

- The 12 castle cards (included)
- The Wizard's Hut card (included)
- 4 dice
- 22 tokens of any color, shape or form (although you will likely need fewer)

How does the game play?

Each player controls a castle formed by 6 cards or locations, numbered 1-6. The objective is to destroy your opponent's Heart of the Castle, the card numbered 5. But this is easier said than done -- some cards protect the Heart of the Castle and some other give juicy benefits, so the most direct approach is not always the best, or even feasible.

Every turn, you secretly roll a die and assault the matching location of your opponent's castle. However, players are allowed (and encouraged) to lie about their die result. Getting caught means a faster demise for you, since you will have to deal 1 Bluff Damage to any of your locations, but getting away with the lie will bring victory much more swiftly. In addition, players have the option to manipulate the capricious mood of Lady Luck by employing the services of a powerful wizard that lives between both kingdoms and only wants to finish his chicken broth and be left alone, thank you very much.

Whenever a location is destroyed, the card is flipped and can't be used or assaulted again. Once the Heart of the Castle is destroyed, the owner of the castle loses the game and their opponent is declared the winner.

Here's the structure of each castle:



1 Archer Tower. 2 defense. Allows you to assign your opponent's Bluff Damage.

2 West Keep. 3 defense. While this location is face-up, the Heart of the Castle can't be assaulted.

3 East Keep. 3 defense. While this location is face-up, the Heart of the Castle can't be assaulted.

4 Dungeon. 2 defense. This card happens to hold another die that represents some reinforcements belonging to your opponent captured by your army. As soon as this card is destroyed, your opponent gains control of the die and is allowed to roll 2 dice instead of 1 from that moment on.

5 Dragonflame Storage. 2 defense. This is where the gunpowder-like substance used to punch holes on your opponent's castle is stored. If and when it blows up, it will deal 1 damage to one of your locations.

6 Heart of the Castle. 4 defense. The throne room. The ultimate prize. Let it blow up and the game is lost.

Besides this, the Wizard's Hut sits between both kingdoms and can also be assaulted.

H Wizard's Hut. If you attack this location instead of your opponent's castle, you put a damage token on your side of it. Using this token allows you to re-roll your dice or your opponent's dice.


Components


Blue Castle


Setup


Game in progress



Please consider this game for the following category prizes:

Best Bluffing Game
Most Spouse-Friendly Game
Most Portable Game
Best Competitive Game
Best Child-Friendly Game
Best Dice-Based Game
Best Integration of Theme and Mechanics


Thanks for checking the game out and have fun!
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Javier Martin
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase)
What am I trying to achieve with this design?

My main mission here is to make a bluffing game that's portable, thematic, easy to build and that plays really fast. Since it has so few components and uses dice, it may be look like there's not a lot of strategy to it, but look a bit beyond the accessibility of the game and you'll notice that there's more to it than it meets the eye.

I like dice. I think they're a powerful tool, and open a lot of design space beyond roll-to-move and roll-to-hit. When I use dice, I try not to use them as a success mechanic, but rather to provide options to the players.

There is indeed a luck element in SSaD, but it can be manipulated in two different ways: bluffing and re-rolling. I think both mechanics mesh together very well in the game. For instance, say your opponent has a token on the Wizard's Hut and assaults one of your locations that's really critical at this point of the game, like a damaged Dragonflame Storage. Is he bluffing? Why didn't he re-roll the die? Can I afford the extra damage if I call his bluff and it turns out he was telling the truth?

At some point in the game, bluffing becomes more of a necessity unless you want to fall behind. The mannerisms of your opponent throughout the game will probably give you subtle hints in this phase. Pay attention!

There's another layer of complexity that may not be immediately obvious: Assigning damage to your own locations is equally as important as sniping your opponent's locations. It may be tempting to add damage to your beefy Heart of the Castle, but its ability can't repair itself. Moreover, the more of your locations get destroyed, the more necessary it will be for your opponent to lie, since destroyed locations can't be assaulted. As long as your Heart is fine, you're in the game, so think twice before assigning damage!

All in all, I'm pretty satisfied with how the game is shaping up, and I'm looking forward to share it with you guys!
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Lizzie
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
I like the idea, I am slightly confused as how tricking your opponent WRT to where you are attacking will help, can you try and defend? Do you have some troops to deploy?

Do the keeps protect the heart from the archers as well as direct assault?
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
Thanks for the comment! I'm sure right now it looks a bit confusing, but really, once you get to actually playing it, it's the simplest thing (although it does have way more strategy than it looks like!). I hope everything will be clearer when I upload some more info.

HuggableHamster wrote:
I like the idea, I am slightly confused as how tricking your opponent WRT to where you are attacking will help, can you try and defend? Do you have some troops to deploy?


Essentially, this is a game of misinformation and bluffing. In your turn, you roll the die and call a number. Your opponent can "defend" in a way -- by calling your bluff.

If they don't call your bluff, you assign your damage on whatever number you called and your turn is over. However, if they do call it, you have to show your die. Then, if you were lying, you won't deal any damage AND you will have to assign 1 damage to one of your locations (your choice). If you were not lying, your opponent receives the original damage AND 1 damage to one of their locations (their choice).

HuggableHamster wrote:
Do the keeps protect the heart from the archers as well as direct assault?


Great question! No, they don't, but there are normally juicier targets around, although it is certainly possible to hit the Heart directly.

Here's an example. Imagine you get a 6 in your first turn. You decide to bluff and call a 4. Your opponent buys it. That's 1 damage on the Dungeon right there. Then, at the end of your turn, you reveal your 6 to finish the Dungeon off with the Archer Tower. What this means is that you will immediately free your reinforcements die and roll two dice from your next turn on -- a pretty hefty advantage, all thanks to the power of bluffs and the remarkable sniping skills of your archers!

Of course, this is all subject to change, but it's worked so far. I'm really looking forward to uploading some basic components soon!

Hope this helps and thanks again!
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Lizzie
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
Ahh I understand, yes that does sound like it is a fun little bluffing game (and I approve of awesome archers they are clearly awesome).

If I can get a chance I will try and give it a play
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Javier Martin
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
Here's a WIP! My graphic designer tells me that the cards are not finished, but honestly, I just love the minimalistic, clear look, and I don't think they need much more work! What do you guys think?

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Nate K
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
The shapes really work for me! The colors are a little harsh and unwelcoming, though.
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
kurthl33t wrote:
The shapes really work for me! The colors are a little harsh and unwelcoming, though.


As usual ,thanks a lot for your feedback, Nate! I'll make sure to pass the message along.
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Lizzie
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
+1 for the shapes, I would bring the edges of the dungeon in a little to stop it blending in to the card edges so much.

On first glance I have to say I got the dragonflame storage and heart of the castle the other way round, the others were very clear though, kudos for that!

Really not a fan of the colour though I think it either need to be a richer red, or a more defined dark grey (if that makes sense).
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
HuggableHamster wrote:
+1 for the shapes, I would bring the edges of the dungeon in a little to stop it blending in to the card edges so much.

On first glance I have to say I got the dragonflame storage and heart of the castle the other way round, the others were very clear though, kudos for that!

Really not a fan of the colour though I think it either need to be a richer red, or a more defined dark grey (if that makes sense).


Thanks a lot, Lizzy! I will look into your suggestions.

For what is worth, the castle of the second player will be blue, so we are trying to find a combination of colors that go well together and don't create problems for colorblind people. Here it is:



Of course, there will also be a printer-friendly version of the game in B&W available.
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Ghislain LEVEQUE
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
dummiesday wrote:
Here's a WIP! My graphic designer tells me that the cards are not finished, but honestly, I just love the minimalistic, clear look, and I don't think they need much more work! What do you guys think?


I would add some lightly colored texture to the different zones of the card
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Jenny Wüstrich
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (prototype phase) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
Thanks for the feedback everyone, it was me who created the cards. I am not really a graphic designer, but I love working in Photoshop and am always happy if something useful comes out of it, haha!

In my mind, these cards were only mock-ups so that the game can be played already. I wanted to create something different for the finished version. I'm quite happy though that they are liked! Maybe I should keep it this way!

For sure I can change the colours of the cards to anything more likeable like brown, pure red or grey (for fast printing). I chose an orange-red colour to make it less hard on the eyes. But it seems it's not that popular. laugh And I like very much the idea of giving them a slightly coloured texture, making it easier to distinguish building and background. Will try that out today!
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Javier Martin
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
UPDATE: The files can now be downloaded. Give it a try and have some fun!

Link to the cards: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRMG1OMFhMTS1SbFU...

Link to the rules: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXROVdYNU1nRGxsR1E...
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Ghislain LEVEQUE
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
When you lay the card in pyramid shape at the start of the game, they are face down, right ? This should be mentioned in the setup part of the rules.

Edit: no, I'm wrong, the cards are face up. Because the cards say "reveal", I was thinking reveal the card but it's reveal the dice.

Note for myself: next time, read the whole rules before posting
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
courtjus wrote:
When you lay the card in pyramid shape at the start of the game, they are face down, right ? This should be mentioned in the setup part of the rules.

Edit: no, I'm wrong, the cards are face up. Because the cards say "reveal", I was thinking reveal the card but it's reveal the dice.

Note for myself: next time, read the whole rules before posting


Well, I'm glad that's cleared up! Do let me know if you have any other questions, or if the game makes you break any relationships(I called my girlfriend something very bad yesterday while playing).
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
I'm going to use the opportunity to ask some feedback from the people who have played the game. If you download it and don't mind answering a few questions, here's the feedback that I'm most interested in:

-Did you find the rules confusing?
-Did you think that any locations were more or less powerful than others?
-Were the games close?
-How long did it take to play one game?
-How often did you lie?
-Did you enjoy your time with the game?

Of course, this is far from compulsory. The most important thing is that you guys play the game and have fun with it!
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Weston Stapleton
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
Hey Javier. I have been slowly working my way through other contest submissions now that I have my own submission at a playtesting state, and yours was one of the ones I marked earlier in the month. This is quite a simple but interesting concept, and though I cannot give you feedback on playtests yet, I did have a good read through the rulebook.
First off, thanks for the humor in the rulebook . . . it is rare that writers can pull of humor, and I had some chuckles when reading the rules (I especially like The Wizard guy popping in and giving hints ).
Anyways, I am a big fan of Liar's Dice, though I havent played it in forever. And this game brought back some memories of that, except it is all wrapped up in a really nice theme . . . and the theme is actually prevalent. Each of the castle pieces encompasses an ability that makes perfect sense with what the castle piece represents. That is always a huge plus in my book!
Only a few small questions popped up while going through the rules, everything else was crystal clear :

a: Can a castle heal pieces that are flipped face down (back up to 1 health)? It is never specifically stated yes/no (or maybe I missed it)

b: When you choose to attack the Wizard's Hut, are you still able to reveal a "6" in order to use your Archers or Heart?

Thats it , everything else looks great. I am rooting through all of the submissions slowly, and I am planning on bringing a handful to my gaming groups "International Tabletop Day" to force some of these 2P contest entries on others. Hopefully I can come back with some feedback for you after that (April 5th)
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
goatfarmer03 wrote:
Hey Javier. I have been slowly working my way through other contest submissions now that I have my own submission at a playtesting state, and yours was one of the ones I marked earlier in the month. This is quite a simple but interesting concept, and though I cannot give you feedback on playtests yet, I did have a good read through the rulebook.
First off, thanks for the humor in the rulebook . . . it is rare that writers can pull of humor, and I had some chuckles when reading the rules (I especially like The Wizard guy popping in and giving hints ).
Anyways, I am a big fan of Liar's Dice, though I havent played it in forever. And this game brought back some memories of that, except it is all wrapped up in a really nice theme . . . and the theme is actually prevalent. Each of the castle pieces encompasses an ability that makes perfect sense with what the castle piece represents. That is always a huge plus in my book!
Only a few small questions popped up while going through the rules, everything else was crystal clear :

a: Can a castle heal pieces that are flipped face down (back up to 1 health)? It is never specifically stated yes/no (or maybe I missed it)

b: When you choose to attack the Wizard's Hut, are you still able to reveal a "6" in order to use your Archers or Heart?

Thats it , everything else looks great. I am rooting through all of the submissions slowly, and I am planning on bringing a handful to my gaming groups "International Tabletop Day" to force some of these 2P contest entries on others. Hopefully I can come back with some feedback for you after that (April 5th)


Hi Weston!

Thanks for your interest and feedback! I'm really happy that you find the game interesting and that you are putting so much effort on it.

Let me see if I can answer your questions!

Quote:
a: Can a castle heal pieces that are flipped face down (back up to 1 health)? It is never specifically stated yes/no (or maybe I missed it)


As specified in the rulebook, destroyed pieces are flipped face-down. Therefore, they don't have a number, a defense value, a name or text of any kind. The idea here is that they can't be interacted with anymore. Of course, if you still think this may be ambiguous, I can try to squeeze a note in to clarify it!

Quote:
b: When you choose to attack the Wizard's Hut, are you still able to reveal a "6" in order to use your Archers or Heart?


Nope! After attacking the Wizard's Hut, your turn is immediately over, as per the current rules. The rationale behind this is simple: No pain, no gain! I thought it would feel better for the game if players had to risk something to use their abilities.

Again, thanks a lot. It means a lot to me that you decided to offer some preliminary feedback. Also, do not hesitate to ask any other questions that may come up!
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Stick, Stones and Dragonflame playtest
Thanks for answering the questions. Good news is, since it was such an easy PnP I decided to print it out the next day and my wife and I played it this evening. First a warning, my wife is an absolutely terrible liar, or maybe we have just been married too long laugh.
The game is pretty fun. It really came down to the line at the end, she just rolled a few more 6's than me. She got my dungeon down first, so that gave her a little bit of an advantage mid game. It is going to take another play or 2 before I can quickly lie off the cuff without first looking at the die for a few seconds. You gotta be fast and confident to pull it off, because if you even pause for a second (especially with 1 die) it is already too obvious. That is not a bad thing though, I think it was hilarious. I think if you preplan which number you are going to say before you roll the dice, you may be able to pull off the bluff.
Anyways, we had a great time playing it and we will surely try it again soon. A few things that popped in my head during the playthrough :

a: Both of our Arrow Towers went down very quick. It may have just been how the dice fell, or how much of a good target it was to bluff some damage onto. I really like the idea of that ability and though it seems very powerful, I wonder if pumping up the HP of the arrow tower by 1 would unbalance everything?

b: In the early rolls, before I really got confident in my bluffing, I would roll a dice and take my token off the Wiz Hut. And then roll again, and add one back. Is this supposed to be ok? I am kind of neutral about it, because it gave you something to do if your rolls weren't right, or perhaps you paused a bit too long before calling out the number (and made it obvious). But on the other hand it seemed kind of an easy way out.

c: The last chunk of turns (when we both only had the Heart left) was really funny because you really tried to read your opponent with every roll. Plus, for the most part, players will have both dice at that point, so there is even more of a chance for a "6" to be rolled. It was cool, but it may have lasted a little long when trying to take down that last piece. I wonder how much it would hurt to have the Heart be 5 HP instead of 6.

Thats all I really could come up with. It is a really good game, and does not overstay its welcome for how simple it is. We both really enjoyed it. My wife even said it was good and she is not a big fan of bluffing games.

PS: If you get the chance and are interested, please give My Contest Entry a read-through, and maybe a playtest if it seems to be a game you want to try. Geeks helping geeks.
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
goatfarmer03 wrote:

a: Both of our Arrow Towers went down very quick. It may have just been how the dice fell, or how much of a good target it was to bluff some damage onto. I really like the idea of that ability and though it seems very powerful, I wonder if pumping up the HP of the arrow tower by 1 would unbalance everything?


That's a bit surprising. In my games, the Archer Tower doesn't seem to go down particularly fast. I will say, however, that I've had the chance to show the game to some people these days and they all made a confusing face every time I spoke about revealing dice. This mechanic creates always some questions and seems a little clunky. Lately I've been thinking of changing the Archer Tower and make it a bit more straightforward, like allowing it to shoot automatically every turn at specific locations. This would also help with the late-game standoffs, I think.

goatfarmer03 wrote:
b: In the early rolls, before I really got confident in my bluffing, I would roll a dice and take my token off the Wiz Hut. And then roll again, and add one back. Is this supposed to be ok? I am kind of neutral about it, because it gave you something to do if your rolls weren't right, or perhaps you paused a bit too long before calling out the number (and made it obvious). But on the other hand it seemed kind of an easy way out.


As you guessed, the Wizard's Hut is there to prevent automatic gameplay in the late-game. It happens very often that both players have only their Heart of the Castle left, and when it does, both players are literally forced to call 6 in their rolls. It just occurred to me that there must be an elegant way to make the Wizard's Hut only usable in the late game.

To answer your questions, yes, that's the intended effect. I do agree that it may make the game a bit longer than I like, but so far I think it's necessary to prevent the previously described situation. I may have to put on my thinking cap and see if I can come up with a solution that's not too complicated.

goatfarmer03 wrote:
c: The last chunk of turns (when we both only had the Heart left) was really funny because you really tried to read your opponent with every roll. Plus, for the most part, players will have both dice at that point, so there is even more of a chance for a "6" to be rolled. It was cool, but it may have lasted a little long when trying to take down that last piece. I wonder how much it would hurt to have the Heart be 5 HP instead of 6.


I'm really glad that you caught on the little details that I put into the design! And as I said in my previous point, I will try to make the game a bit shorter. The Heart of the Castle used to have 5 HP at some point, so maybe I will test it again with that value and see where that takes me.

goatfarmer03 wrote:
Thats all I really could come up with. It is a really good game, and does not overstay its welcome for how simple it is. We both really enjoyed it. My wife even said it was good and she is not a big fan of bluffing games.

PS: If you get the chance and are interested, please give My Contest Entry a read-through, and maybe a playtest if it seems to be a game you want to try. Geeks helping geeks.


I'm on a trip right now, but I'll make sure to have a look at your game, of course!

Thanks a lot for the feedback! It really helps a lot.

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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
The revealing 6 mechanic (for the heart and archer) took us a second to figure out how it was supposed to be played. But I believe it is worded just fine in the instructions. Now that I think back, one of the things that I stumbled on was under the "Game flow" section. It states ". . . and then decide between 2 options", but then it lists 3. Some people may think that the 3rd option (about revealing dice) is part of the 2nd action (assaulting an opponent's location). Perhaps if the Game flow section had a table of contents section before you go into explaining them in depth, it may help. Something like this :

Both players take turns trying to destroy their opponent's castle. Every turn, the player starts by SECRETLY rolling all of the dice they have. They then have the choice of 3 different options:
1) Attack the Wizard's Hut.
2) Assault an opponent's location.
3) Reveal a natural "6" to use an ability (Archer Tower or Heart of the Castle)

I think overall the game length was great, don't purposely try to shorten it. The idea I had was, if you up the Archer Tower +1 HP, the game length would balance if you then gave a -1 HP to the Heart. I thought the Archer Tower and Wizard Huts worked great as intended now that you have explained your experience with them. I am pretty sure we were just rolling lots of 1's in the beginning,thats why ours lasted a bit shorter.
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
That's good to hear. In any case, after reading your feedback, I've also been thinking of a couple tweaks that I would like to test thoroughly.
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Gregg Jewell
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
I want to try this game out for sure this weekend.

The only wording to me that seemed off was "attacking" the wizard hut. I understand the concept of giving it a Reroll action point I just think "empower" or something sounds better.

How are you covering your dice? I had thought about using a mini Pringles can with the bottom cut out so I can just drop the dice in there and see the results from above. Then, just lift the can when revealing to my opponent.


If you want the wizard hut activated in late game instead of all game maybe add text to the hut card that says something like:

"The wizard returns home from his epic quest after any six cards between both players has been destroyed."
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Javier Martin
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
JewellGames wrote:
I want to try this game out for sure this weekend.

The only wording to me that seemed off was "attacking" the wizard hut. I understand the concept of giving it a Reroll action point I just think "empower" or something sounds better.

How are you covering your dice? I had thought about using a mini Pringles can with the bottom cut out so I can just drop the dice in there and see the results from above. Then, just lift the can when revealing to my opponent.


If you want the wizard hut activated in late game instead of all game maybe add text to the hut card that says something like:

"The wizard returns home from his epic quest after any six cards between both players has been destroyed."


Thanks a lot for your input! I've recently made a few changes to the rules and the cards that simplify the experience and make it a bit less clunky. I should be able to upload them tomorrow if you would like to try the newest version.

I only use my hands to cover the dice, but of course it would be optimal to have a dice cup handy! On that note, I love Pringles, so thanks for giving me an excuse to go out and buy some.
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Javier Martin
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Re: [WIP] Stick, Stones and Dragonflame (files available) - 2014 Two-Player Print-and-Play contest
UPDATE 2014-04-04: Major update! The game has been streamlined further. Changelog:

-The "revealing dice" abilities from the Archer Tower and the Heart of the Castle are out! This should make the game less clunky and less prone to drag on due to repairing.
-Revamped the Archer Tower. It should now be a more desirable target, on par with the rest of the locations.
-Changed the defense value of the Heart of the Castle from 6 to 4.
-Updated the rulebook to reflect these changes.

This should be the last major update unless I realize something is broken. In the next update I will upload the final art and maybe make some minor wording tweaks, if necessary.[/b]

Link to the cards:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRWnZGZTAxSm42UXc...

Link to the rules:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6QEJ0uMUUXRZlo5Nkpnd3ZLSms...
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