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Subject: Have an idea for a hot potato card game. rss

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Nathan Wilcox
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Hello all. I did some lurking though I'm still not sure if this is the right spot for something like this. I figured someone would move me otherwise.

Essentially I have an idea for a card game that is basically a combination of Uno, Hot Potato, and Law and Order. For now I'm calling it Snitch.

Snitch is played with at least 3 players. Like Uno, players will play cards one player after each other in a stack in response to the cards played before. However, unlike Uno, the object of the game is to NOT run out of cards in your hand. As long as you have at least 1 card in your hand after a predetermined number of turns, you win points. If you run out of cards you're out for the hand.

The reason why I included Law and Order is because the basis of the story is that the dealer is the police who are interrogating the other players who are suspects in a crime. The police are trying to get the players to turn on each other in order and make the suspects burn through their cards. Doing so prevents the suspects from getting points.

The suspects don't need to care about any of the other suspects. They simply need to survive.

There are two decks of cards, the police deck, and the suspect deck.

At the start of a turn, the dealer for the hand flips a card from the police deck. The card will have an instruction such as "Choose a suspect and demand they play an action.". The dealer would then do so. This kicks off the hot potato (Focus) part of the game.

The main part of the game is making sure Focus is not on you. If the turn ends with Focus on you and you cannot play a card, you eat a strike. If you get 3 strikes, you're out for the hand. So it's in your interest to pass the buck to the other suspects.

You do this by playing action cards. The most numerous would be the "Point the Finger" card, which allows you to name another suspect and put the Focus on them. That new player is now required to play an action card their own. There would be several types of actions that move the Focus in different ways. The thing is though, every time you play one of these cards, that's one less card in your hand. If a player cannot play an action or refuses to play an action (which is their right) they take a stike. However, this ends the turn. There are some action cards that end the turn without giving the player a strike.

The dealer then flips a new card to start a new round until the max number of turns is hit, or all suspects run out of cards.

Most of the police cards will be "Accuse" cards that start the hot potato. However, another type of police cards will be "Question" cards.

With Question cards, the dealer chooses someone and that person must play an Alibi card. If the suspect has an Alibi card, they can then play it. If they do, they're allowed to draw a new Suspect card to replace it. If they don't have one, they can play an Action card instead.

However, if that person sends the Focus to another player, that new player must either play an Alibi of their own, or another Action. The first person to play an Alibi ends the round and the last player to move the focus takes a strike. If the suspect the dealer chooses has an Alibi from the beginning, no one gets a strike.

Finally, if a player loses all their cards or gains 3 strikes, they are locked out from points that hand, however they get to play as The Snitch. The Snitch gets a special rule board and one die. At the end of every round, the Snitch rolls the die, compares it to board, and does whatever the rule says. Most will affect the remaining suspects. In this way, while the Snitch can't win points, he or she can definitely keep the other suspects from winning either.

Now I haven't decided if the dealer should be able to gain points, or simply try to deny other players from doing so. Each person gets a chance to be dealer once. Also I'm not sure on how many rounds per hand would be the right number for something like this. Hearts plays with an entire 52 card deck for 4 people which gives roughly 13 tricks. Not sure if that's a good base point to work from.

I don't have art for this as of yet. But honestly, it can be minimalist really since the cards are simply commands. They wouldn't have to be fancy.

Any thoughts?
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The Chaz
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My first thought is "Hmm, I should post a link to Karl's game Snitch!"

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1529038443/snitch?ref=b... - the campaign is live now.

Ok, I'll read some more and offer other thoughts.

Also, I like the integration of Hot Potato.

 
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Nathan Wilcox
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Yeah it's just a working title. It's less about the roles and more about the actions played each turn. I could remove the entire story aspect and just make it an Uno type game and it'll still function. I just like the crime drama back story.
 
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Nathan Wilcox
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Currently working on a prototype to test out if I can get an idea of game speed to know how many rounds is a good number.
 
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