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Subject: Plundering Pluto: Pod (2015 mint tin contest) rss

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Chad Russell
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This was originally designed for the dice hate me games dexterity Challange. Since it will not be completed by the end of the month, it is getting a pocket sized version for the mint tin Challange. I feel the couple extra months should be time enough.

I am creating a card file for the mint tin version which requires the smaller scale dice, (a bit larger than 1 cm) and smaller 2" cards.

Test components for the mint tin version can be seen here:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BzTeOpj6iAMAflZaUmRTaGd0Uk...

Latest version of rules in Google docs can be found here:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/11B4ESde5aKLpr6RY-2KLN6YT...

Original version (Scurvy SkeeDawgz) components and back sticker files can be found here:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BzTeOpj6iAMAfkQ4U2FiaXhHWl...

Plundering Pluto is a two player dice/deduction/dexterity game using dice to represent player pirate ships. The first player to destroy the three sections of their opponent’s ship with their cannon fire is the winner.

"The zepuin on your shoulder flaps nervously as the giant tusks of a palgus Wroth surface in the distance. It doesn’t seem pleased with all the exchange of cannon fire. Neptune and Uranus rise on the iceberg riddled coast. Someone put your loot on that ship, and the time to retaliate was running thin."

Contents:
3 league cards, 2 lines of fire cards, 18 pulse cannon cards (9 per player)
Not provided: Ship dice: 6 white dice, 6 black dice
Weaponry dice: 6 blue dice, 2 red, 2 yellow, 2 green.

The game should be played on a wood or smooth surface, and circular cards laminated. Each ship is represented by 6 dice separated into 3 sections of the ship. These dice are rolled up to 3 times before the game and arranged to build the ships strength in each section.

Players are given hands of 9 circular pulse cannon cards, having the values of 1 - 9. The 12 weapon dice are placed in reach of both players. Player 2 chooses one of the weapon dice first, followed by player 1. Players alternate taking a die until each player has 3. See the Weapon Actions section below. Players distribute their weapons throughout the three sectors of their ship.

Game play:
A player’s turn consists of playing cards with the intention of reducing the strength of the three sectors of the opponent’s ship. The card played represents the value to be deducted from the opponent ship.
With each card presented by the current player, a counter card is played by the opponent. Cards are concealed until ready to be revealed at the same time.
There are a few guide rules to follow in the mini card game to choose which cards can be fired. These can be found in the latest rules file.

Cannon fire:
The current player places their cannon card on the table behind and centered the line of fire cards. They then use 1-3 fingers to “fire” the cannonball card, sliding it toward the desired open section of the ships. While firing, a players hand may not pass the firing line.

If the card passes through one of the sections, touching the league card in that section, the value of the cannonball is subtracted from that section of the opponent’s ship. The opponent rotates one or both dice of that section of their ship to show the new strength of that section. The dice cannot go lower than 1, therefore, both dice on the 1; (strength 2) indicates a destroyed section of the ship.

Ship dice are never removed even when destroyed. The opponent removes cards after each fire from the play area, setting them to the side. Important, Overcompensating: Any value over the total strength of a sector with a force field is given back to that sectors Force field! Therefore, that sector is not yet destroyed.
If a cannonball missed all of the open sections or bounced of any dice, it is also set aside. Any dice knocked from their original position are immediately returned to their previous position.
After the current player has completed canon fire, it is the opponents turn, who will take their turn in the same fashion. Only after both players have fired all 9 of their cannonballs are they gathered together and redistributed.

Weapon Actions: Weapons are activated once when its sector is considered destroyed then removed from play. With the exception of force fields, weapons are stacked on a die o the chosen sector during set up.
Note-D3: 1 and 2 =1, 3 and 4=2, 5 and 6=3
Red die-3 Legged K9, (triple cannon): roll the die as a D3. Fire 3 cannon cards behind firing line worth the roll result each.
Yellow die-Silent Fart, (disruptor): may take all damage from fire in place of ships damage or be used on any turn to change the sector target of an opponent’s fire.
Green die-Druel: roll the die as a D3; deal that amount of damage to the same sector of the opponent each turn until the sector the druel was located is hit again.
Blue die-Force Field: Force fields are placed in front of a sector die and take damage before the ship die. They may be brought back in play as a recharge if an opponent overcompensates a cannon fire. When a force field is down, stack it on a die in that sector in case it is recharged.

Game End:
If three sections of a player’s ship are destroyed, the opposing player is declared the winner. If ships are still intact after a round of 9 cards, a new round begins.

Hope to have these rules and a printable files and images up soon, any feedback on this is appreciated.
Thank you for the interest!
Chad
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Chad Russell
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Plundering Pluto, first draft art
Sticker file for cannonball card back is available now. A photo will be posted here soon. It can be found at the link above with the game.
Below is a photo of stickers and sample game files.

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Chad Russell
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Re: Plundering Pluto (complete redesign)
Redesigning the art for the Pluto theme. Working on the ship bow and stern here:
 
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Chad Russell
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Re: Plundering Pluto (some new art)
Here is a link for the new Plundering Pluto cannon card backs and box cover stickers.
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BzTeOpj6iAMAcmVpOGlraG52Y2...
Enjoy!
 
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Chad Russell
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Re: Plundering Pluto (new art files started)
Have an idea for a final addition to the game, which is iceberg die. These could be in the core game I believe or as an alternative. The idea is to have each player roll 1-3 dice that represent icebergs along the side of their ship. The sector the die stops at, (bow, waist, stern) adds the number on the roll to the sector as protection.

However, I thought it would be neat to have the chance of them being destructive, giving a press your luck element. This could be if the die roll matches one of the ship die in that sector, it is damaged that amount. This may make the player question whether to roll one iceberg, 2, or 3,

Also, they might have collateral damage, hurting your opponent because they have pressurized gas inside and launch when broken, (this is Pluto , who knows).

I believe this could add some fun to to game, option are good but I don't want to overdue it. Please post if this seems interesting, I would be willing to send a copy to play test to someone when I feel it is at a good state. Thanks!
 
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Chad Russell
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Re: Plundering Pluto (new art files started)
Now that most if the components are ready, (still need 5 cards), I will be reworking the rules with illustrations and photos. There will be a bit more storyline included, and the pulse cannons are now p.a.w.s cannons, as the former may be liscenced by a game, not sure. P.a.w.s stands for pulse annomoly wavelength system/spheres.

The characters are Celeste Storm and Onyx kedesh, former elite of the Womaq fleet. Onyx carried an outlawed p.a.w.s. Pistol EDB, Storm prefers her Sabre with holographic force shield.

Will also include the iceberg play mentioned earlier. Please note the finished card back and face photo in the first post of this thread.
 
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Chad Russell
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Here is a look at some of the finished components:
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Chad Russell
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The mint tin version minus the rules. They should fit where the logo card is, hopefully.


Will be getting game set up and play photos for the contest, maybe fit some in the rules. Look forward to any feedback, -Chad
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Nate
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A couple quick comments.

Rolling for strength (with the yahtzee mechanic) seems like it might lead to some unbalanced games if a player gets a couple poor rolls to start.

The distributing weapons phase seems like a large part of the rules. Is there a reason this phase is optional?

It's not exactly clear to me how the card mechanic works (even with the examples provided in the text). Is there a strategy to this part of the game? It also seems a tad random.

It looks like the players flick or slide cards when using Cannon Fire. I had assumed the circular tokens would be used for this?

The theme seems kind of funny but I might remove the canine aspect from it.

What is the main dexterity element of this design?

When I pictured this game in my mind, I pictured each player controlling a couple of ships (circular tokens) and firing (smaller circular tokens?) at each other. Perhaps there could be different types of ships or ships could have different stats. It seems like the ships could be able to move around. Perhaps there would be obstacles between the ships (asteroids?) Perhaps the dice could be used to mark how much health they have left.

Anyways, it looks like the rules could be clarified and cleaned up a bit. It also looks like you've put a lot of time and effort into this and made a good looking prototype. Keep up the great work.
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Nate
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Another game that comes to mind is Cosmic Kaboom by Minion Games. It might be worth checking out for some ideas or inspiration.
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Chad Russell
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Thank you for the quick feedback, anything is appreciated. You are correct, it has been through different forms, previously called "Scurvy Skeedawgs".

It was a rather random dexterity game in which a pirate ship is made from the dice rolled and the circular cannon ball cards with a value of 1-9 are slid like a hockey puck across a table into one of the 3 sections of the ship. The value of the card is deducted from that section by rotating the dice of the ship.

So to answer one of your last statements, the dice ARE the ship AND its strength status. Now, I realize the yahtzee type makeup of the ships seems quite random, I tried using a ship at full stat,(all sixes) on play testers that played the first idea and they asked, "Wait,I can't roll for to make up the ship now?" This led to idea is to include customization of the game for different levels of gamer,(or attention spands).

I always included the weapon dice, and the option to add extra dice to the game to strengthen the ships. Again, some players loved the weapon addition and some (mostly light gamers) felt simple was better. I liked the unique weapons to add to the standard cannons personally. Maybe not using the weapons should be a variant, not sure.

Finally, the game has a card game option, rather than shuffling the cards and "firing" them in order from top to bottom. The card option is basically three rounds of blind bidding/ poker type feel that may allow more than one card to be fired on a turn, if your opponent doesn't stop you.

The theme being pirate dogs on the planet Pluto may seem a bit silly but honestly, it is not meant to be a serious or heavy game.

In conclusion for now, I designed the game in three stages of play, to welcome in different levels of gamers. Players may choose how much they wish to include in the game. Many times I personally feel we are only designing for experienced gamers here, but I try to remember that there are plenty soon to be as well.

There is work still to be done, this is why I removed it from the dexterity challenge. I hope some of this helps, and am willing to make visual tutorials or a video to help. When some player laughing when the disks went through the ship, (or off the table), I felt I had to share this.

 
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Chad Russell
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Checked out Cosmic Kaboom, never heard of it. Seems like something I would enjoy, noticed a wolf on the box cover. I am sure this will be much better than my idea but thats ok with me. Thanks for the heads up, will look for it next year for sure.
 
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Chad Russell
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Rules update can be found in google doc on first post. The mini card game is redesigned to be easier to understand and weapon add ons are part of play rather than optional. Hope it is a bit of an improvement.

Also added some ship front and backs to give the suggestion the dice are the waist of the ships. They will need small binder clips to stand, I will have to add this to the rules.
 
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Chad Russell
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Had a recommendation for a submarine retheme of the game which would probably work out well. However, I will not have time for this retheme for the contest I don't believe but will still work on it. Thanks to R4D6 for the input .
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Ethan Ham
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I agree with R4D6 that I would consider dropping the dog theme. I don't mind silliness (I like Cheapass games . But in this case, the dog theme isn't really showing up in the mechanics and for me it distracted from learning the game. For me, the dog theme is taking up mental space without providing a payback in terms of helping me better understand/remember the rules by making the abstract more concrete.

I think you need to streamline the game mechanics--you have a lot going on in a relatively small game. Perhaps related to streamlining, I found the rules hard to learn. Perhaps it might help if you started by explaining the core game play and then circle back to give details regarding the secondary mechanics. In anycase, I think you need to do some blind playtesting (i.e., watch people try to learn your game from the rules alone).

It wasn't clear how the blue shield dice values are established. By rolling them?

I think I might be missing something about card playing & countering mechanic. Does a card that is played return to the player's hand for the purposes of countering? If not, doesn't that give the player 2 the play uncounterable cards by simply playing the same cards that player 1 has already played?

Perhaps the target dice/ships should be in middle of table with players shooting from either side? That might better provide the feeling of a head-to-head exchange of broadsides--right now it feels a bit like bowling.
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Chad Russell
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Thank you for the feedback Ethan, appreciate it! I agree with your statement that the game feels like bowling, I believe the players in separate sides of a table is mentioned as an alternative, just did not know how many players would have enough space to play it that way.

The theme can definitely be changed to something like human pirates or captains of a submarine. I really feel the the game was more fun playing with the a stack of cards for each player, drawing a card and firing in turn.

To answer another question, weapons and shields are rolled and placed just as the ships. The game is very random and light in this way, which some may not like. I feel that was what I was aiming for though, something that is easier to teach and play.

As mentioned, a new theme and simplified play ideas should be posted here in the future. I suppose for those who printed the game, newely designed stickers could be players over the dog artwork.

Thanks again!
 
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