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Subject: [WIP] Distant Colony rss

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David Sevier
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Distant Colony is a project I've been working on for a bit now, and I think it's about in its final form. The idea has changed a fair amount since I initially thought of the concept, but what has resulted is a good solid game that hasn't needed any really major rules changes in quite a while.

I'm curious to see your thoughts on it.

Sorry for the kinda rough formatting on the rules, I haven't had time to really adapt them over to the limited options this forum gives us.




Distant Colony is a game of settlement building. Colonists from the home worlds will arrive on a regular basis, as will trade ships looking to buy and sell raw materials and goods. On the planet itself your settlements will grow as you add colonists, build buildings, and go from a tiny subsistence center to a thriving city.

The Goal of each Player is to have the most Victory Points at the end of the game. You gain victory points from certain buildings throughout the game as well as from the buildings you have staffed at the end of the game.

The Game will end when all Available Colonists have been used, all available VPs have been used, or a player has completely filled all of the space in their Settlement. Once a game ending condition is met, the Round will go through to its completion and the game will then end.

Set-up:
Each player gets a Colony Board, a Colony Center, a Farm, Two Unskilled Colonists, 2 Food, 1 Basic Goods, 1 Machine, and 6 Wealth.

The Colonist Pool and VP Pool are determined depending on the number of players. One Skilled Colonist is removed per player and used for the starting available colonists. The remaining colonists are put into a bag or opaque bowl and randomized.

The Trade Environment deck should have an Expansion card removed and then shuffled. The Expansion card is then placed on top and acts as the
initial Trade Environment.


Overview of play:

The game is split up into Rounds. Every round each player will secretly choose one of the six Phases that they want to have happen that turn. Once all players have chosen, they simultaneously reveal their choice. All of the phases chosen by the players will happen that round, with the players who chose a given phase getting an advantage during that phase.

Phases

The Six Phases are as follows:

Survey: Alien planets have a great deal of data that can be gathered on them and sold, generating Wealth.
Colonization: Colonists from the home world arrive
Build: Each Player may construct a new facility in their settlement
Produce: Facilities produce resources, goods, wealth, or Victory points
Trade: Players may buy and sell goods with the trade fleets that visit the planet
Organization: Players my reorganize where their colonists are working


The Phases happen in order, and most phases are done simultaneously. A full breakdown of the phases and what they do will be presented later.

Players may Trade amongst themselves freely, regardless of Phase. Wealth, Resources, and Colonists may all be traded.

Colonists

There are four kinds of Colonists: Unskilled, Skilled, Expert, and Criminal.

Unskilled can only work on the more basic jobs of the colony. They are abundant and make up the majority of colonists that will be arriving.
Skilled can perform most jobs on the colony and are required for some of the more advanced jobs. They are rarer than the Unskilled colonists.
Experts can perform nearly any job on the colony and are required for the most advanced jobs. They are quite rare.
Criminals are, for the most part, simply a drain on your resources and cannot be assigned to work in the majority of buildings. They are, however, rather rare.

Resources

There are 6 types of Resources in the game: Food, Basic Raw Resources, Rare Raw Resources, Basic Goods, Rare Goods, and Machines.

Resources are physical items that take up space, and therefore must be stored. They are also physically bought and sold to Traders and can be traded between players. Resources are only available in limited quantities for trade, so the colonies must produce much of what they need themselves.

Food: The most common resource produced by any settlement, and also the most vital. Without food, no other work on the colony can get done.
Basic Raw Resources: Wood, Metals, Silicates, Gases, and the like. Useless by themselves, but can be refined into Basic Goods.
Rare Raw Resources: Precious Metals, Rare Earth Elements, Radioactives, and the like. Useless by themselves, but can be refined into Rare Goods.
Basic Goods: Everything from Building materials to Furniture to Office Supplies. They represent the common materials and items needed for civilized life and are needed to Build buildings or Machines.
Rare Goods: Luxury Goods, Advanced Circuitry, and other components needed for a higher standard of living or advanced manufacturing. They are needed for a few buildings.
Machines: From farm equipment to forklifts, machine presses, and electronics, machines make all Industry work. They are required for many buildings.

Buildings

There are five different category of Buildings: Colonial Infrastructure, Farming, Harvesting, Manufacturing, and Scientific.

Colonial Infrastructure includes your starting Colonial Center, Warehouses, Universities, Markets, Resorts, and Prisons.
Farms provide food for the colony. There are basic Farms, large Industrial Farms, and specialized Xeno Farms to cultivate alien life forms for study.
Harvesters gather the raw resources of the planet. There are basic Harvesters, large Harvester Complexes, and advanced Rare Harvesters to extract Rare resources.
Manufacturing buildings produce Goods or Machines. There are basic Goods Factories and Machine Factories, large Goods Factory Complexes and Machine Factory Complexes, and specialized Rare Goods Factories
Scientific Buildings product Victory Points. There are basic Laboratories and large Laboratory complexes

All buildings that have Staff will only work if their Staff is fed during the phase that the building is used.

Buildings also have a Size, generally 1 or 2. You have 15 total spaces in your Settlement available. One is already used by your Colony Center and one more by your starting Farm, leaving you 13 spaces to use during the game.

Wealth
Wealth is used as a general trade medium. Resources are bought and sold with wealth, and it can be traded amongst players.


Phases: Detail
Survey
Basic Effect: Each player gains 1 Wealth
Played Effect: You gain 2 Wealth instead of 1

Colonization
Basic Effect: Each player takes 1 available colonist in turn, beginning with the Starting Player. Players also get any reserved colonists they have selected.
Played Effect: In addition to the colonist(s) you gain, you also get to Reserve a colonist. Take any 1 available colonist from the source pool and set it aside. Next time Colonization is performed, you gain that reserved colonist in addition to the one from the general pool.
Note: Colonists go into 'Temporary Housing' during this phase, not assigned to buildings.

Build
Basic Effect: Each player may build one building, paying the appropriate costs to do so, and staff it immediately. If the building can hold more than one colonist, you may staff it to full capacity. Staff may come from Temporary Housing or other buildings, but colonists taken from buildings are not replaced.
Played Effect: You may Build and Staff one additional Building this Phase.

Production
Basic Effect: Each player may use any buildings with a Production Action (Farms produce food, Factories convert raw resources to good, etc.). They may be used in any order the player wishes.
Played Effect: One colonist you activate this turn is Free (does not cost Food). Note this is Colonist, not Building, so additional Staff still require Food.

Production Example
Player A has 3 Farms, their Colonial Center staffed by an Unskilled Colonist, a Harvester, and a Goods Factory.
The Farms produce 3 Food.
The Colonial Center uses 1 Food and Produces 1 Wealth
The Harvester uses 1 Food and Produces 1 Basic Raw Resource
The Goods Factory uses 1 Food and 1 Basic Raw Resource and Produces 1 Basic Goods

The Net effect is that 1 Basic Goods and 1 Wealth is Produced by the Colony.

If Player A Played the Production Card, one of the Non-Farm Colonists would not require Food, netting the player an Additional Food that phase.

Trade
Basic Effect: Each player trades with the Station in turn, beginning with the Starting Player. Any resources bought by the player are gone from the station, and any resources sold by the player are available for other players to buy. In addition, Soldiers and Officers may be traded to and from the Station for VPs. You may not go below 0 VP through trading.
Played Effect: In addition to the normal Trade, You may add a Contract to make a single resource available for purchase at a later date. You may have up to six contracts total. (For example, you could have contracts for 4 Food, 1 Basic Goods, and 1 Machine). Available Contracts may be used to purchase resources that are currently unavailable, but at whatever the current rate for that resource is.

Trade Environments
Each Trade phase has a new Trade Environment. There are 6 possible Trade Environments. Standard will happen most often, with the others all equally likely.

The game will begin using the Expansion Environment

Organization
Basic Effect: Each player may reorganize their colonists, moving them as needed between buildings and temporary housing. All building restrictions must still be met.
Played Effect: In addition to reorganizing colonists, Gain First Player. If multiple players played Organization, than the next in line from the current first player gets First Player. The other player(s) may choose one other Phase played this turn and get its Played effect instead.



End Game Scoring

At the end of the game, each player tallies up the following to get their final score:
All VPs gained from Staffed Buildings at the end of the game. Unstaffed buildings only give VP if they do not take staff (ex, Warehouse)
All VPs gained during the game from Production
-1 VP per unemployed Colonist, except Criminals, Soldiers, and Officers
-2 VP per unemployed Criminal
0 VP per unemployed Soldier and Officer
1 VP for every 10 Wealth, rounded down. Convert all remaining Resources to their Wealth sell value using the Standard Trade Environment before doing this step.




Set-ups by # Players:
Colonists/Num Players -- 2 -- 3 -- 4 -- 5 -- 6
Unskilled -- 16 -- 24 -- 32 -- 40 -- 48
Skilled -- 6 -- 9 -- 12 -- 15 -- 18
Expert -- 4 -- 6 -- 8 -- 10 -- 12
Criminal -- 4 -- 6 -- 8 -- 10 -- 12

VPs -- 30 -- 45 -- 60 -- 75 -- 90


Building List:

Colony Center
Cost: 0. Starting Building, cannot be built later.
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: This building can hold 5 Resources. If staffed with an Unskilled, gain 1 Wealth during Production. If staffed with a Skilled, gain 2 Wealth during Production. If staffed with an Expert, gain 1 VP during Production.
Size: 1
End VP: 0

Market
Cost: 1 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: During Production you may Sell 1 Food, Basic Goods, or Rare Goods for 2, 4, or 6 Wealth respectively. May only sell 1 Resource per Market.
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Resort
Cost: 4 Basic Goods, 1 Rare Goods
Staffing: 2 - Min. 1 Skilled, 1 Unskilled
Effect: During Production gain 2 Wealth and 1 VP
Size: 2
End VP: 2

University
Cost: 2 Basic Goods
Staffing: 2 - Special (Min Unskilled)
Effect: May upgrade an existing Colonist to a higher type during production. Requires 1 lower skilled Colonist and 1 higher skilled Colonist. The lower skilled Colonist is raised up 1 level. (i.e. An Unskilled and a Skilled are staffing the University. After Production, the Unskilled becomes a Skilled.) One or both Colonists may be moved back to Temporary housing after the upgrade.
Size: 1
End VP: 3

Warehouse
Cost: 1 Basic Goods
Staffing: 0
Effect: Can hold 5 Resources
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Warehouse Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods
Staffing: 0
Effect: Can hold 10 Resources
Size: 2
End VP: 2

Survey Station
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 1 Rare Goods, 1 Machine
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled.
Effect: During the Survey phase gain a resource depending on the Colonist Staffing the building. Unskilled = Basic Raw, Skilled = Rare Raw, Expert = 1 VP. Note that this still requires 1 Food, despite being in the Survey phase and not Production.
Size: 1
End VP: 2

Prison
Cost: 5 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1-4 Criminals
Effect: For each Criminal staffing the Prison, gain 2 Wealth during Production
Size: 2
End VP: 3

Rehabilitation Center
Cost: 2 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 Expert, 1 Criminal
Effect: Converts a Criminal into an Unskilled colonist. One or both Colonists may be moved back to Temporary housing after the upgrade.
Size: 1
End VP: 2


Farm
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 1 Machine
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Produce 1 Food during Production. Does not use Food to Produce.
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Farm Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods, 2 Machine
Staffing: 2 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Produce 2 Food during Production. Does not use Food to Produce.
Complex Bonus: May Produce 1 Extra food if fully staffed
Size: 2
End VP: 2


Harvester
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 1 Machine
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Produce 1 Basic Raw Resource during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 2

Harvester Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods, 2 Machine
Staffing: 2 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Produce 2 Basic Raw Resources during Production
Complex Bonus: May Produce 1 Extra Basic Raw Resource if fully staffed
Size: 2
End VP: 3

Rare Harvester
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 2 Machines
Staffing: 1 - Min. Skilled
Effect: Produce 1 Rare Raw Resource during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 3


Goods Factory
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 1 Machine
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Consume 1 Basic Raw Resource to Produce 1 Basic Goods during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 3

Goods Factory Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods, 2 Machine
Staffing: 2 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Consume 2 Basic Raw Resources to Produce 2 Basic Goods during Production
Complex Bonus: May Consume 1 extra Basic Raw Resource to Produce 1 Extra Basic Goods if fully staffed
Size: 2
End VP: 4

Advanced Goods Factory
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 2 Machines
Staffing: 1 - Min. Skilled
Effect: Consume 1 Rare Raw Resource to Produce 1 Rare Goods during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 4


Machine Factory
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 2 Machines
Staffing: 1 - Min. Skilled
Effect: Consume 1 Basic Goods to Produce 1 Machine during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 5

Machine Factory Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods, 4 Machines
Staffing: 2 - Min. Skilled
Effect: Consume 2 Basic Goods to Produce 2 Machine during Production
Complex Bonus: May Consume 1 extra Basic Goods to Produce 1 Extra Machine if fully staffed
Size: 2
End VP: 7


Laboratory
Cost: 1 Basic Goods, 1 Rare Goods, 1 Machine
Staffing: 1 - Min. Expert
Effect: Produce 1 VP during Production
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Laboratory Complex
Cost: 2 Basic Goods, 2 Rare Goods, 2 Machines
Staffing: 2 - Min. Expert
Effect: Produce 2 VP during Production
Complex Bonus: May produce 1 Extra VP if fully staffed
Size: 2
End VP: 2


Barracks (Military)
Cost: 1 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 - Min. Unskilled
Effect: Converts the staffed Colonist into a Soldier. The Soldier may be moved back to Temporary housing after the upgrade.
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Officer School (Military)
Cost: 1 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 Officer, 1 - Min. Skilled
Effect: Converts the staffed Colonist into an Officer. The Officer may be moved back to Temporary housing after the upgrade.
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Boot Camp (Military)
Cost: 1 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 Criminal, 1 Officer
Effect: Converts the staffed Criminal into a Soldier. The Soldier may be moved back to Temporary housing after the upgrade.
Size: 1
End VP: 1

Military HQ (Military)
Cost: 2 Basic Goods
Staffing: 1 Officer
Effect: You may Organize your Military Buildings during the Production Phase, freely moving colonists between Temporary Housing and the Military Buildings themselves. You may NOT move colonists into or out of non-military buildings.
Size: 1
End VP: 3


Terraformer
Cost: 3 Basic Goods, 1 Rare Goods, 4 Machines
Staffing: 0
Effect: None
Size: 4
End VP: 10


Trade Environments:

(The amount in stock is the example for a 6 player game)

Standard:
Food Costs 2 and Buys for 1 12 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 3 and Buys for 2 6 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 5 and Buys for 4 3 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 5 and Buys for 4 6 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 7 and Buys for 6 3 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 7 and Buys for 6 9 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 3VP and Buys for 2VP 3 Available
Officer Costs 4VP and Buys for 3VP 2 Available

War:
Food Costs 3 and Buys for 2 6 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 4 and Buys for 3 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 6 and Buys for 5 3 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 6 and Buys for 5 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 8 and Buys for 7 3 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 8 and Buys for 7 7 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 5VP and Buys for 4VP 2 Available
Officer Costs 6VP and Buys for 5VP 1 Available

Famine:
Food Costs 4 and Buys for 3 6 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 3 and Buys for 2 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 5 and Buys for 4 2 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 5 and Buys for 4 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 7 and Buys for 6 2 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 7 and Buys for 6 7 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 3VP and Buys for 2VP 3 Available
Officer Costs 4VP and Buys for 3VP 2 Available

Expansion:
Food Costs 2 and Buys for 1 14 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 3 and Buys for 2 6 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 6 and Buys for 5 3 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 5 and Buys for 4 7 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 8 and Buys for 7 3 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 7 and Buys for 6 9 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 4VP and Buys for 3VP 3 Available
Officer Costs 5VP and Buys for 4VP 2 Available

Export:
Food Costs 1 and Buys for 0 11 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 4 and Buys for 3 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 6 and Buys for 5 3 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 4 and Buys for 3 7 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 6 and Buys for 5 4 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 6 and Buys for 5 9 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 2VP and Buys for 1VP 4 Available
Officer Costs 3VP and Buys for 2VP 3 Available

Materials:
Food Costs 2 and Buys for 1 12 in Stock from Traders
Basic Raw Costs 2 and Buys for 1 7 in Stock from Traders
Rare Raw Costs 4 and Buys for 3 6 in Stock from Traders
Basic Goods Costs 6 and Buys for 5 5 in Stock from Traders
Rare Goods Costs 8 and Buys for 7 2 in Stock from Traders
Machines Costs 8 and Buys for 7 7 in Stock from Traders
Soldier Costs 2VP and Buys for 1VP 4 Available
Officer Costs 3VP and Buys for 2VP 3 Available
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David Sevier
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Cleaned a few things up and added in some stuff I realized was missing.
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Craig C
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Looks like you've put a lot of effort into this. My initial questions (admittedly I haven't read through the whole thing yet):

It looks at first glance like "Space Puerto Rico". What would you say differentiates your game from PR?

If the players secretly choose a phase and whoever chooses a phase gets an advantage during that phase (like PR), how do you resolve more than one player choosing the same phase?
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At a basic level it is quite a bit like Puerto Rico meets Race for the Galaxy.

Functionally, though, it actually works out quite differently. There is much more of an engine-building aspect to this game than Puerto Rico has. It's more than simply Farm Resource -> Process Resource -> Trade Resource for VP.

Here you have more of a production chain option. Food fuels the buildings. Harvesters give you Raw Resources, Goods Factories process the Raws into finished Goods, Machine Factories process finished Goods into Machines. And both Finished Goods and Machines are used to build more buildings. You can also go a Science Route (Buildings that produce VP) and Military Route (converting Colonists into VP). Ultimately giving you 3 different paths for Victory Points that can be specialized in or mixed depending on your strategy.


As far as the Phase Bonus, it's like Race for the Galaxy. Everyone who plays that Phase gets the bonus. For example, the bonus for Playing Survey is that you gain an Additional Wealth. So everyone who played Survey gets 2 Wealth while everyone else gets 1.

The only odd one is Organization, since that gives you the First Player marker. In that case, the person Next in Line (clockwise) from the current First Player gets the token and the other players who played the Phase get to pick a different bonus.
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Craig C
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Aha.

Mephansteras wrote:
At a basic level it is quite a bit like Puerto Rico meets Race for the Galaxy.


You probably already knew this, but RftG came about during the attempt to make a card-based version of Puerto Rico, which eventually became San Juan. So in a way, Puerto Rico and Race for the Galaxy have already met.

Looks like there's more of a production chain involved in your game. Will the buildings be set up like an assembly line to help players keep track of what raw materials need to get used where? I could see that bogging down quickly if it's not intuitively organized.

What determines the trade environment? Can players influence whether it's Expansion or War, etc.?
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David Sevier
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Well, so far I actually haven't done anything with the iconography on the buildings. They're just cardstock rectangles with a name on it at the moment, although none of my playtesters have had any issues with them so far. But, yes, I'm planning on making very obvious what most of the buildings do on the building itself to make things easy. Iconography is actually one of the next big steps for me in design, now that the game rules have more or less settled down.


The trade environment is external, and represents the overall Galactic Market. The players are much too small to have any impact on it. Mechanically, at the moment it changes after the Trade phase happens. I've been pondering changing it so that the Trade Environment card is flipped at the end of every round.

There are pros and cons to both approaches, and I really need to test it to see which I like better. Having the Trade Environment stick around until players use it lets the players do more multi-turn build-up and planning. Making it change every turn forces the players to be more reactive, but also lets them bide their time until a favorable Environment shows up.

I suppose the second is more Thematic, though, since the rest of the Galaxy isn't exactly waiting on some backwater Colony to get on with their business.
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Craig C
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It'd definitely be more thematic if the colony was at the mercy of the galaxy. Possibly players could have card/abilities that'd give them some "inside info" as to what was coming next, to allow a bit of strategy into that phase.

For the buildings, I wasn't thinking so much about iconography or explaining what the building does, but more along the lines of ordering the production phase, where you'd resolve all food production first, then all raw material production, then move onto finished goods, just to make it easier to keep track of everything.
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David Sevier
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Ah, I see what you mean! Probably not a bad idea. Doesn't have too much real mechanical impact, but it would make the rules a bit easier to understand when first learning how to play.


As for players getting "inside info" I have some ideas for a Leaders expansion that does stuff like that. The Merchant gets to see the Next Trade Environment card as his ability. That part is all just rough notes right now, though, and hasn't been tested at all.
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Craig C
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Ok. You might consider some of those elements in the base game, to give it more of a spacey feel. PR differentiates itself from more Knizia-esque Euros by giving a Caribbean feel (beyond the suspiciously-brown "colonists", which have been debated to death elsewhere). Players make Corn, Indigo, Coffee, etc.

Growing "Food" and making "Machines" might seem a bit dry. It wouldn't take much to give it an otherworldly flavor, and you could tie the Trade Environment into it. Maybe certain types of machines are more valuable under different galaxy conditions, etc. Militarizing colonists is worth more VP under wartime, maybe.

Adding different races/species could be interesting, too. Perhaps they'd be affected differently by what's going on in the galaxy.
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David Sevier
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Well, if you look at the Trade Environments you can see that Soldiers are in fact worth a lot more in those situations.

But, yeah, I can see how the resources might be a little dry at this point. They're very...high level categories. I had some more spacey stuff in earlier drafts of the game, but they added complexity without really doing much other than that so I've kinda of pared things down a bit.

One of my other expansion type ideas is to add in different world types with various effects to them, but again that ended up complicating the base game a bit too much so I've shoved those ideas off until later.

One of those balancing act challenges when making a game, I guess.
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David Sevier
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Here is a photo I took of a game in session, just so people can kind of see how things look. Not a very good shot, sorry, but it's something.



The round beads are Colonists:
Yellow - Unskilled
Red - Skilled
Blue - Expert
Black - Criminal
Green - Soldier
Ivory - Officer

The cubes are Resources, and the poker chips are Wealth.

In this shot you can see one player's Colony, with their Colony Center, a Farm, and a Farm Complex.

You can also see the center board which has the current set of Buyable Resources, the Currently Available colonists, as well as Contracts that two people have for Rare Goods and two Reserved Experts.

There is also a really colorful index card up above it which is the Trade Environment for the round, which holds all the info on the prices and how much to put out into the center.
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Had a thought for a change to the mechanics, and I'd like to get some feedback on the idea.

One of the points I've never been happy about in the game is the First Player and turn order section. The game is mostly simultaneous, except for Colonization and Trade where turn order becomes very important. But it always felt clunky and First Player was difficult to balance between being too powerful or too weak.

So I want to get rid of it, and I think I've figured out how.


The idea is add in a new resource: Influence.

You gain 1 Influence counter whenever you play Organization.

Influence can be spend in the Colonization and Trade phases. It can also be traded amongst the players freely.

The Colonization Phase has changed. Each player now picks a Colonist out of the bag at random. Players may pay influence to pick before other players if they so wish. Typically it won't matter too much, but the option is there. Players may also pay an influence to draw out a second colonist from the bag and pick the one they want to keep. Each player may only do this once per Round.

The Trade Phase has changed as well. Each Resource is gone through in turn. Each player announces how many of that resource they will be buying. If more of a Resource is desired than available then players may offer more to the merchants to get them to sell to that player. Influence may also be spent to do this (Possibly at a 1 Influence = 2 Wealth ratio?).


These changes completely remove the Turn order as a concept and add in some additional player interaction which I think will be a plus.

Colonization is a bit muddy, now, since without Turn order it's hard to know who should grab first out of the bag. However, there generally isn't any set advantage in going before or after someone else, it really just depends on what they pull. If they pull the type you want, than your chances of pulling it went down. If they pull something else, your chances of getting what you want just went up. So I think that's a wash.

Maybe I could have it start with the players who Played the Colonization phase card that turn, just to give it a starting point?
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