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Subject: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Contest Ready] rss

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Selene Tan
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Mini Monarchy
by Selene Tan

Mini Monarchy is a solo kingdom-building, map-drawing game that's like *Roll Through the Ages* crossed with *How to Host a Dungeon*.

1 Player, 20 minutes

Components: Instructions/play sheet, two six-sided dice, pencil and eraser

http://nightstaff.net/games/wip/mini_monarchy_v02.pdf
http://nightstaff.net/games/wip/mini_monarchy_v04.pdf
http://nightstaff.net/games/wip/mini_monarchy_v05.pdf

Design Goals:

1. Have an interesting map at the end
2. See how much kingdom building I can cram into a page
3. Create history as you play so you can use it in an RPG
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Niklas Hook
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Wonderful - love it.
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Pencil & paper games are certainly allowed and are in the spirit of the competition. Thanks for participating and good luck to you!
 
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todd sanders
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
will try this tomorrow. might want to specify 6 sided dice in your rules
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Kai Scheuer
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
AWESOME!!

Very well thought through!



Kind regards,
Kai
 
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Stefano Molinari
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Yes nice!...and you can play this on a Samsung Galaxy Note:



will try to test it and will let you know my thoughts.
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
This looks like a lot of fun! I'm looking forward to playing it tomorrow.
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
DylanCane wrote:
Yes nice!...and you can play this on a Samsung Galaxy Note


What?
How?

Do I need a certain App?



Kind regards,
Kai
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
schattentanz wrote:
DylanCane wrote:
Yes nice!...and you can play this on a Samsung Galaxy Note


What?
How?

Do I need a certain App?



Kind regards,
Kai


Yeah, what app did you use for this? I have been curious to try playing games like Utopia Engine on my Note 4. With multi window mode and the right apps I could roll dice in one window and draw on the pdf in the other window.
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Matthew N
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Great game! Just printed it off and gave it a try.

I'm a bit confused by the start though. You only start with one farm by the river that can only produce 2 food. But at the end of the first turn you need 5 food to feed your empire. (3 cities 1 mine and 1 farm) So it seems that from the beginning you will be erasing one of your constructed buildings.

Also is there a better way of tracking resources? I ended up making a large pile of eraser dust lol

Anyway thanks for putting together the game it was great fun!
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Matharos wrote:


I'm a bit confused by the start though. You only start with one farm by the river that can only produce 2 food. But at the end of the first turn you need 5 food to feed your empire. (3 cities 1 mine and 1 farm) So it seems that from the beginning you will be erasing one of your constructed buildings.


I second this question. It is unclear whether I should 1. pay one food PER city, mine, AND farm or 2. pay one food regardless of the number of cities, farms or mines. It seems likely that case 1 is correct. If so, should we have a starting pool of food? Or perhaps no food cost the first round?

Also, I played the game with 6 of my students and most picked up on it right away. We chose to keep track of our resources on a spare post it note and that worked pretty good. a few of the kids enjoyed it quite a bit
 
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Selene Tan
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Thanks for playing, and I'm glad you enjoyed it! I like seeing the maps other people make.

thevig wrote:
Matharos wrote:


I'm a bit confused by the start though. You only start with one farm by the river that can only produce 2 food. But at the end of the first turn you need 5 food to feed your empire. (3 cities 1 mine and 1 farm) So it seems that from the beginning you will be erasing one of your constructed buildings.


I second this question. It is unclear whether I should 1. pay one food PER city, mine, AND farm or 2. pay one food regardless of the number of cities, farms or mines. It seems likely that case 1 is correct. If so, should we have a starting pool of food? Or perhaps no food cost the first round?


It's pay one food per each farm, mine, and city. I'll reword that on the sheet.

I do want the early turns before your engine takes off to feel uncertain and be focused on agriculture, but there are times when the best move is to not build anything and hope for better rolls next turn, which doesn't feel great. The starting three buildings can feed themselves (farm = 2 food, city = 2 work -> 1 food), so if you don't roll extra food the first turn you can either wait to roll better next turn or sacrifice one of your other buildings to build a farm. Losing a building is recoverable--in later turns, the capital can produce the missing resource, the Fate Dice will always give you at least one of the resource type you rolled, and in the meantime you've reduced your food needs.

I a previous version if you didn't build you got extra resources, but that removed all the uncertainty from early turns. I'll try starting out with just one farm and ignoring Disaster/Hard Times on the first roll and see how that goes.

Matharos wrote:


Also is there a better way of tracking resources? I ended up making a large pile of eraser dust lol




I hear you on the eraser dust, some of my playtests I tracked resources in a text file. Tokens would work better, but I'm trying to minimize extra components. A numbered track would mean you only need three tokens, but then I'd have to rearrange the sheet. I'll think about it some more.
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Charles Ward
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]


angry third attempt posting this angry

First impressions:
Simple setup
Easy to learn
Easy to win
Nice game

Changes I would make:
Add the dice rolls to give 11 fate outcomes not 6.
War. I want war. Approaching turn by turn. Persistent until defeated. I want to be prepared. I want to be victorious!
Add Capital city to Fate 5, Produce, and Feed 1, for clarity.
Add Monuments to Feed 1, for difficulty.
Give a bonus for cities next to both mines and farms, to make the city building more meaningful.
Mines should run out after 6 turns (or yield max 1) but still count for feed and fate.
Find a better icon for Ore.
Make the map smaller (remove the bottom row and then the 4 corner hexes).
Capital city one hex is fine.
Add a round tracker at the bottom of the page like I did.

Questions:
How many monument stage 1 can I have?
Do rivers run through hexes or along the borders?
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Maxime Blanchette
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Matharos wrote:
I'm a bit confused by the start though. You only start with one farm by the river that can only produce 2 food. But at the end of the first turn you need 5 food to feed your empire. (3 cities 1 mine and 1 farm) So it seems that from the beginning you will be erasing one of your constructed buildings.


The rule says :"Draw[...] one city next to either of them [Farm or Mine]." Which means that on first turn you will have: 1 Capital (city), 1 Farm, 1 Mine and another 1 city next to a farm or mine. For a total feed cost of 4 food.

In my case, I produced 1 food with the capital and exchanged the 2 work produce by my city for 1 food. Total of 4 food. First turn, I ended up at zero food and no need to destroy a building.

Am I missing something?

Also, as Charles pointed out, I'm not sure what the monument is... Should it be on the map? On a side track numbered from 0 to 3? For me a monument, in a game of monarchy, sounds like a statue of myself right in the middle of MY capital. How are we supposed to handle the monument stage?
EDIT: I answered to my question: the monument must be on the map since at each stage it grows by one hex. At 3, you win.
 
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Maxime Blanchette
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Wow! I really enjoyed the game. I played it twice in 2 days. I like the theme and the simplicity of your game. Quick to learn, fun to play. Here is my second game:


I've made some mistakes during the first game, which weren't repeated during the second. Mistakes were made mainly because I read the rules too quickly and forgot about basic thing such as the +1 food by farm. So, the rate of the game was too slow and I wasn't able to have enough resources to keep growing and feeding my empire.

I will play others games for sure. However, here is some comments and questions.

C1: In the Construction section of the rule, I would change the order of the resources to make it fits to the rest of the rule. In Each Year section and Fate Die Results equal to 2, you have Food, Ore and Work. But for the construction of city, for instance, you have Work, Food and Ore. It may look like I small detail, but my brain had a hard time to figure it out and it was difficult to not be mixed up. I would recommend changing the order to Food, Ore and Work. For me, it would have save mistakes and hurdles.

C2: I also thing like Charles regarding the size of the map. I do believe the map should be reduce a bit. I haven’t tested it, but from the result of my second game, it would make sense to remove 12 hexes. See image below. I crossed the first column of hexes and there is still enough remaining space to play.

C3: If comment #2 happens, this will allow you to add tracks to keep the resources and the years count. On the image top left, there is an example of the table (resources-tracking-device) that I used during my game. At the bottom, you have another track to keep the year count and to note important events; new building, loss of a mine or a city, number of resources at the end of each year. By having the number of resources written down helped me to do not erase too quickly. Keeping track of the events also helps to give your game a RPG feel, the storytelling side is more prevalent.



C4: I would change the format of the construction of Monument. The objective would be make it clearer by having something similar to: Monument Stage X = ''Cost to build'' = ''What player must do on the map'' + Bonus when this Monument Stage is reached. Here is an example.


Q1: The question everyone has:
ex1st wrote:
Do rivers run through hexes or along the borders?


Q2: Is Capital City 2 or 3 hexes? I played with 3 and it work out great. I disagree with Charles; for me, one hex isn’t fine. The capital represent the strong place of your kingdom. Even if you don’t have enough food to feed it, it will resist. It must be mighty and bigger than simple cities. Also, it removes more spaces and helps to have an interesting map at the end of the game. I would make the edges of Capital City thicker and remove the oval. I think it could be more eye-appealing.
Moreover, with a bigger Capital City, you may think to add placement rule for monument. For instance, Monument Stage 1 must be draw next to your capital city… Or something else, or not…

Q3: Starving: Do you starve anytime you lose a building? Or, do you starve 1 time by turn no matter the number of buildings you’ve lost?

Q4:With Monument Stage 2, can Capital City produces 2 times the same resource? I believe the answer is yes, but I just want to be 100% sure. Thanks.

So, I hope this help you. Feel free to comment, I’m eager to have answers to my questions and to read what you think of the ideas above. Feel free to take or reject any of the comments.

EDIT: Wow, this is a long post... I forgot to mention 3 simple little squares to keep track of the famines.
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
W01FVF wrote:
Matharos wrote:
I'm a bit confused by the start though. You only start with one farm by the river that can only produce 2 food. But at the end of the first turn you need 5 food to feed your empire. (3 cities 1 mine and 1 farm) So it seems that from the beginning you will be erasing one of your constructed buildings.


The rule says :"Draw[...] one city next to either of them [Farm or Mine]." Which means that on first turn you will have: 1 Capital (city), 1 Farm, 1 Mine and another 1 city next to a farm or mine. For a total feed cost of 4 food.

In my case, I produced 1 food with the capital and exchanged the 2 work produce by my city for 1 food. Total of 4 food. First turn, I ended up at zero food and no need to destroy a building.

Am I missing something?

oh... I made a mistake... for some reason I drew two cities at the start. I think I will rig a resource tracker like Maxime has and give it a try again.
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
I tried it, and though it COULD be a fun game, I ended up quitting after 6 turns. Here are the impressions. Hopefully there is some useful feedback in here.

* At the beginning of the game, I was using all of my wheat, plus all of my labor to produce wheat, just to stay alive. I really needed to build more farms, but the only thing I had was ore. Even then, couldn't build more mines because food production was consistently kicking me in the teeth. At the end of 6 turns, I had built and kept a single mine. The fate dice was mostly responsible for this, as every turn but one I got a least one 1 or 2. I get that you're going for an agrarian beginning, but if so, just take out the mine and the second city, or add a second farm.

* Tracking resources was awful. I've got a tiny eraser, so I ended up crossing out resources as I built them. It was so hard to know how many of each resource I actually had. A tracker like Maxime proposed is an absolute necessity.

* I did not understand the cost for farms, mines, and cities. Even going back to re-read it, I don't understand. If I have 4 farms, do I multiply the cost by 3?

* What is my objective? How do I know when the game has ended? Am I going for a score?

So yeah... I like the idea of a solitaire kingdom builder, but of all of the games I've tried so far in this contest, this one needs the most development. If you can clean it up, I'd be happy to try again.
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
I'm really interested in trying this game, but I think I will wait for an official update to the feedback that's been given (no rush or judgment, it's a lot of info!) Looks like a really neat game, that I can tell I would enjoy more with resource tracking, from what's been described. However, since I haven't tried it yet, less weight given to what I say, but I can just tell that I would enjoy it more with the resource tracking. If that's not in the next update, I will go ahead and try it regardless.

Looks fun, keeping my eyes peeled.

Forgive my awkward newbess, I am afraid of doing things incorrectly or saying things in a way that may offend, which makes me afraid to say anything or participate. I am awkward at the best of times. My intentions are good, I can get caught up in being enthusiastic about things.

Really neat design, here.
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
sarebear62 wrote:
Forgive my awkward newbess, I am afraid of doing things incorrectly or saying things in a way that may offend, which makes me afraid to say anything or participate. I am awkward at the best of times. My intentions are good, I can get caught up in being enthusiastic about things.


Yeah... I think I used to be like that. 4 Protospiels, 2 GenCons, and 10 game designs later, and I've become a lot more direct. I do not mean to give offense. Sometimes the best thing you can hear as a designer is, "You've got a good idea, but it just doesn't work in its current form." I like this idea, which is why I printed this off, but right now it just doesn't work. The good news is that it COULD work with some fairly easy changes.
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Here is what I think, note that I'm not the designer of the game, but a player that really enjoy it.

BleuVII wrote:
I tried it, and though it COULD be a fun game, I ended up quitting after 6 turns. Here are the impressions. Hopefully there is some useful feedback in here.

* At the beginning of the game, I was using all of my wheat, plus all of my labor to produce wheat, just to stay alive. I really needed to build more farms, but the only thing I had was ore. Even then, couldn't build more mines because food production was consistently kicking me in the teeth. At the end of 6 turns, I had built and kept a single mine. The fate dice was mostly responsible for this, as every turn but one I got a least one 1 or 2. I get that you're going for an agrarian beginning, but if so, just take out the mine and the second city, or add a second farm.

You should give it another try. Try to build ASAP Monument Stage 1 then 2. After all, building Monument is the objective of the game. This will help you with bad Fate roll. Rolling a 1 isn't the best, but I often found out that it helped: it reduces the amount of food needed at the end of turn. Try to remove Mine first as those aren't a necessity for the first turns.


I think the first few years pushes the player to add extra farms. And this is great, a real kingdom surely need to start with farms and food. If you're able to keep a Mine on the map for a least 2 turns, the first Monument Stage will be a no brainer.

BleuVII wrote:

* What is my objective? How do I know when the game has ended? Am I going for a score?

The objective of the game isn't well define. I had to read through this forum and look at picture of end game to learn it. You need to build a big Monument (total of 3 hexes) that will live forever and prove that your kingdom was majestic. (this is my own words). For me it is like... eh... the Gate of Kings in the Lord of the Ring or... Pyramids of Giza.

In summary, to win you must: build a Monument Stage 3 and complete a turn (or end the current one) without starving. Also, you lose the game if you starve three times.

I think that "not knowing" the objective was a part of you not enjoying the game.

BleuVII wrote:
* Tracking resources was awful. I've got a tiny eraser, so I ended up crossing out resources as I built them. It was so hard to know how many of each resource I actually had. A tracker like Maxime proposed is an absolute necessity.



BleuVII wrote:
* I did not understand the cost for farms, mines, and cities. Even going back to re-read it, I don't understand. If I have 4 farms, do I multiply the cost by 3?

From my point of view and understanding:"Yes."

First Farm costs 1 Food and 1 Work. Second Farm costs 1 Food and 1 Work. Third Farm costs 2 Food and 2 Work, and so on.

~-~-~-
Final note, I believe the game is too easy as is. The level of difficulty was perfect for me, but for all the games I played (so far 4), I only produce 1 resource by Fate roll/result. I misread the rule...

Let say, I rolled a 3: instead of producing +1 Food for each Farm in play, I only produce +1 Food. Ashera, you should try the game with this rule. For sure, it is making it harder, but not unachievable. Let me know what you think.
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
All this feedback and the designer is not here to hear it
 
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Re: [WIP] Mini Monarchy [2016 One Page PNP Contest] [Components Ready]
Hi,

Thank you everyone for playing the game, and I've loved seeing all the cities you've come up with. I've been revising the rules text and iterating through resource tracker variants, and was hesitant to post until I had a new version.

Answers to rules questions:

- Rivers are drawn inside hexes
- The Monument takes up three hexes on the map when complete, one hex for each stage. You can only have one of each stage.
- You win the game by having a Stage 3 Monument and not starving. In other words, you can't use the last of your food to build Stage 3, you have to have enough leftover to feed yourself.
- You lose the game if you had three turns where you starved (had to destroy buildings due to lack of food).
- The Capital does *not* count as a City for Production, Feeding, or Fate, which makes the early game a bit easier. That's clearly confusing, so I'm renaming Cities to Villages.
- Your starting buildings are the Capital, one Farm, one Mine, and one Village
- Building costs: To build a new Farm, pay one hammer and one food for each Farm you have. If you don't have any Farms, pay one hammer and one food. The other building costs scale the same way.
- Yes, your first turns are meant to be focused on feeding yourself/building up an agricultural base. If you don't roll extra food early on it can be worth intentionally starving off your Mine to reduce the pressure.

New version (also updated in the top post):
http://nightstaff.net/games/wip/mini_monarchy_v04.pdf
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I revised the tracker table and updated the Graveyard rules. Mini Monarchy is now Contest Ready.

http://nightstaff.net/games/wip/mini_monarchy_v05.pdf
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I had a chance to play the game today. Thank you for putting this together, Selene! It was enjoyable. I will put together a session report for my next post.

I notice that it has been marked as contest ready so I know you cannot change anything till after voting. I think the game needs a few tweaks:

1) you never mention what the stock is in the instructions. I had guess it was storage, but wasn't sure. Further, it is not clear if the stock has unlimited space. Putting a limit on the number of ore you can store based on the number of villages near your mines might make the game more challenging and really give the player a reason to make more mines. During my game play, I was able to beat the game in 9 years off of primarily 1 mine. Since ore isn't initially as useful as food or efficiency, it is pretty easy to build up your supply. If there was more struggle with sustaining your ore supply there would be more challenge in the game.

2) I recommend switching the effects of the 1st monument stage with the second. I think being able to re-roll is far more effective in helping to beat the game than getting 2 wild resources. I think switching them would lead to a more balanced game. You could also increase the purchase values to produce more challenge.

Either way, nice job! I look forwards to playing your future games!
 
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I've read through the thread several times before, but can't remember if this has been answered. I've scanned for it. Can you use abilities of previous stages after you have built the next stage, and if so I am assuming you can on t g w same turn, since the city producing two is a persistent change . . .
 
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