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Subject: Help with another rules document rss

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michael brown
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I have a game that I am preparing to send to a publisher, but would like another set of eyes (or a few) to look over the rule document. It is only 2 pages long.

Stats: Hungry Oni, 2-4 players, 15 minutes

Synopsis: An ogre (who barged into your picnic) has expressed interest in eating one person present. In this micro-game, you will try to talk you way out of being the one that gets eaten. The game features a market mechanic which simulates the fickle nature of the ogre (and how he reacts to various persuasive tactics).

The rule doc can be found here.

You can comment inline, and if you do, please post here as well, so I can reward your comments you with geek gold.

Thanks!
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Joe Browes
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I'll be happy to take a look for you, will give it a read asap, probably tomorrow afternoon.
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Alex Houghton
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I like the idea behind this game! It's like a much more thematically appropriate (read: better) version of Get Bit.

Are you doing PNP's? If I have time this month, I'd like to make one. There aren't too many components.

I've made some edit suggestions, mostly grammar related. Mostly nitpicks.

The 4th and final part of taking a turn confused me, though. Players are supposed to discard a card when they play it, yet at the end of their turn, it looks like they're picking back up the card they just discarded. Mind explaining that?
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michael brown
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Thanks for the replies (and edits) so far!

I appreciate how helpful everyone at BGG is

houghtona wrote:
Are you doing PNP's? If I have time this month, I'd like to make one. There aren't too many components.

Yes, I have some PnP docs - I just added a link to them to the bottom of the rules document.

houghtona wrote:
The 4th and final part of taking a turn confused me, though. Players are supposed to discard a card when they play it, yet at the end of their turn, it looks like they're picking back up the card they just discarded. Mind explaining that?

Yes, I probably should have specifically called this out in the rules, but basically the combination of that rule and the rule that allows players to discard to the top or bottom of the discard pile (their choice) makes players have a moderate amount of control over what card they draw at the end of the turn.

For instance:
[1] If a player wanted to take the card that is the top card of the discard pile, they would discard both to the bottom, and at the end of the turn they would be able to draw the card that the last player left on top.
[2] If they want to leave the top card of the discard pile the same they would only discard one card to the top.
[3] If they wanted to change the thing that the next player can draw they would discard both cards to the top

With collusion between the players, the ability to discard a card to the bottom of the discard pile makes the top card of the discard pile (potentially) any card that was ever played since the last shuffle.
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Alex Houghton
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Quote:
the rule that allows players to discard to the top or bottom of the discard pile (their choice)


Oh I'd completely forgotten about that. It's interesting that a player could "hoard" a specific card throughout the entire game. Just realized that there are duplicates of course, so hoarding isn't really a thing, haha. I'm looking forward to seeing how that goes when I playtest this.
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Dimitri Sirenko
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theTrueMikeBrown wrote:
I have a game that I am preparing to send to a publisher, but would like another set of eyes (or a few) to look over the rule document. It is only 2 pages long.

Stats: Hungry Oni, 2-4 players, 15 minutes

Synopsis: An ogre (who barged into your picnic) has expressed interest in eating one person present. In this micro-game, you will try to talk you way out of being the one that gets eaten. The game features a market mechanic which simulates the fickle nature of the ogre (and how he reacts to various persuasive tactics).

The rule doc can be found here.

You can comment inline, and if you do, please post here as well, so I can reward your comments you with geek gold.

Thanks!


im looking at the diagrams mainly not the wording, and it feels like the images may be a little too small in my opinion. I would try to increase them by around 30-50%
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Dianne N.
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Setup: "Start with action cards and 4 food tokens."
Q: How many action cards do you start with?


Play: "After setup is complete, the player with the least favor increases the value of two actions of their choice to 2 and one action to 4."
Q: I assume you mean moving the value tokens that you placed on the "1" spots to 2 and 4, but it's unclear what you mean by "increases the value of two actions of their choice" since nothing up to this point in the instructions specifies what an "action" is. I would guess it's the pictures next to the numbers for the hunger track? This should be specified (or an arrow with "actions" added like the arrows for the different tracks).

Playing action cards: You use one example of Beg, and talk about doing it distractedly, hesitantly, or emphatically. I would rewrite this to say when you play an action card, you can do it in one of three ways, and then list this three. It makes it seem like begging can only be done this way, but I'd assume it applies to all cards by looking at the PnP files.

Finally, you call the cards "actions" but the only real actions are the distractedly, hesitantly, or emphatically part, because the cards themselves don't have an actual action. This is confusing when reading the rules, because I'm expecting each action card to do something different (eg, begging is different from groveling or crying), when in fact they don't. I'd almost change this to call the D/H/E the actions, and the cards something else to make it less confusing. Otherwise it feels like something is missing from the rules.


(+1 to Dimitri's comment about the size of the diagrams.)
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Samuel Friedman
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If you want another pair of eyes on this, I can take a look at your rules.
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michael brown
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houghtona wrote:
It's interesting that a player could "hoard" a specific card throughout the entire game.

Though you crossed this part out before I replied to it, It is to some extent true - if a player got all of the copies of any given card, and never played anything else, they could get a guaranteed 8 or more points every round after a few rounds of setup. No-one has done this because it is really hard (and also, you would probably lose before you could get it set up), but it is an interesting thought experiment. I would love to see a player succeed at this.

3CreativeMinds wrote:
I'm looking at the diagrams mainly not the wording, and it feels like the images may be a little too small in my opinion. I would try to increase them by around 30-50%

Great! I can fix that easily. I will do that tonight.

PerpetualFX wrote:
Setup: "Start with action cards and 4 food tokens."
Q: How many action cards do you start with?

Woah! I totally accidentally deleted that when fixing one of Alex's comments! Thanks for the catch

PerpetualFX wrote:
Q: I assume you mean moving the value tokens that you placed on the "1" spots to 2 and 4...

You are correct. I will add in a comment to make this more obvious.

PerpetualFX wrote:
Playing action cards: You use one example of Beg...

You are correct. I will make this more clear.

PerpetualFX wrote:
Finally, you call the cards "actions"...

Thanks for this feedback. I will have to look at how to make this more easy to understand. I like calling them actions, but perhaps I could find a better word.

The idea is that if someone whines a lot, then the oni gets fed up with people whining, and the next time he sees whining it is less effective. The act of whining doesn't get you anything different than crying would (assuming that the oni likes both actions the same amount)

The first thing that comes to mind is "persuasive techniques", but that is horrible.

If anyone has a better word than action for the things that you can do to try to persuade the oni to not eat you, then I would appreciate hearing it.

bradansworld wrote:
If you want another pair of eyes on this, I can take a look at your rules.

Thanks! I would love more eyes.
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Alex Houghton
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Hungry Oni Feedback

We played two 2-player games, which wasn't enough! I'll be posting here again with a couple more thoughts after I've played more 3+player games. It's always important to know how a game changes between different player amounts. Regardless, here's what I have so far.



Fun and Interesting Things

Being able to discard cards to the top or bottom of the discard pile is a great mechanic. It's probably my favorite aspect of the game. It gives players a direct way to adjust the odds that other players will have access to a particular action.

The card-counting aspect of this game is really fun, especially in the late-game. Keeping track of the likelyhoods of the different ways that a player will be able to take advantage of the value tracker is fun when you're part of the reason the other players do/don't have particular actions.

We were happy to realize that moving too far ahead on the favor track was a bad thing, thanks to its circular nature. There were a couple times where someone wanted to capitalize on the value track and wasn't able to without zipping past or on top of the Oni. I like that doing this is still allowed. The option to endanger myself to screw over other players is always welcome.


Concerns and Suggestions

If we choose a Manner that includes decreasing an Action's value, but values are already at 0, can we choose that Manner? We've assumed that this is allowed, otherwise, we'd have been severely limited in our options for much of the game.

It's a little unclear that moving your character around the favor track and past the Oni is allowed. As mentioned above, we realized that this added a small layer of strategy, so we assumed it was.

"Distractedly" was barely used. Granted, there was one instance I can remember where I should have used it. I'm curious what your reasons are for the costs and effects of each of the Manners?

Manners felt clunky, overall. Having to keep looking at the rulebook to remember what our options are for the different Manners got to tiresome. At the very least, players need the different options displayed right in front of them.

A suggestion: Each player gets a set of manner cards (each with a description/diagram). When using a manner, you flip it over. Flipped manners can't be used again. There would then be a 4th manner that unflips the other manners, but is otherwise not that good. This sort of mechanic can encourage the use of all manners.

The different actions you can make in the game are only thematically different. There is no difference between begging, bragging, etc. There might be room in this game for some mechanical flavor. (For example, Baffle could move the Oni back a number of spaces equal to the column number. Brag could do the opposite. Grovel could unflip a manner. Etc.)

Food feels like a small afterthought in this game. It doesn't seem very important, though I did find it useful in one of the games. If you ever feel that this game needs a slimming down, food could probably be removed. Otherwise, it might be interesting to allow players to spend food to move another player backwards on the track.

In the rules, it's a little unclear about how far you can move your character when paying food. As written, it could be interpreted as moving your character the same amount of spaces as the Oni is moving.


Overall Thoughts

We had a lot of fun with this! There are definitely some areas for improvement, so I hope this feedback can help. I'd love to see you expand on the theme a bit.

Have you looked into making cooperative and/or single player rulesets for this game? The theme sort of allows for it, I think.

We had started a video of one of the playtests, but my phone ran out of space almost right away and didn't make any noise to alert us... Maybe another time.
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michael brown
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Thanks for your feedback! I appreciate it .

houghtona wrote:
If we choose a Manner that includes decreasing an Action's value, but values are already at 0, can we choose that Manner?

Yes, you can. You played that right. I will make that explicit in the rules.

houghtona wrote:
It's a little unclear that moving your character around the favor track and past the Oni is allowed.

Thanks for pointing this out. I will fix it.

houghtona wrote:
"Distractedly" was barely used. Granted, there was one instance I can remember where I should have used it. I'm curious what your reasons are for the costs and effects of each of the Manners?

I made 6 manners originally, but found that people liked having fewer (since the mental load was lower). The costs and effects were just based on playtesting feedback. I can't say that I will never add more manners back in again, however I will definitely make another chart that shows players what manner does what (I used to have one, I just haven't updated it in a while).

houghtona wrote:
A suggestion: Each player gets a set of manner cards (each with a description/diagram). When using a manner, you flip it over. Flipped manners can't be used again. There would then be a 4th manner that unflips the other manners, but is otherwise not that good. This sort of mechanic can encourage the use of all manners.

That is a cool idea. I will have to play around with that, since it seems like it could add a lot to the game without adding too many more components.

houghtona wrote:
The different actions you can make in the game are only thematically different. There is no difference between begging, bragging, etc. There might be room in this game for some mechanical flavor. (For example, Baffle could move the Oni back a number of spaces equal to the column number. Brag could do the opposite. Grovel could unflip a manner. Etc.)

True, this has been commented on before - I just worry that if actions had manners and effects it would get really confusing as to what happens when you perform what (there would be a three by six matrix of all possible outcomes, and people didn't even like six possible outcomes).

houghtona wrote:
Food feels like a small afterthought in this game. It doesn't seem very important, though I did find it useful in one of the games. If you ever feel that this game needs a slimming down, food could probably be removed. Otherwise, it might be interesting to allow players to spend food to move another player backwards on the track.

Well spotted - food was added in much later in the game when I changed the theme to include a picnic. It doesn't really need to be there but it addresses a concern that a playtester had (messing up/bad luck early could end the game really quickly). I will have to work to make it more integrated into the core of the game if I am to keep it.

houghtona wrote:
In the rules, it's a little unclear about how far you can move your character when paying food. As written, it could be interpreted as moving your character the same amount of spaces as the Oni is moving.

Thanks! I will fix this in the rules. You can only move one square per food you spend.

houghtona wrote:
Have you looked into making cooperative and/or single player rulesets for this game? The theme sort of allows for it, I think.

That is a great idea - I will have to consider how to make that work. At least we could add teams to the game, but perhaps there should be a way to make it possible for the players to all work together.

houghtona wrote:
We had a lot of fun with this! There are definitely some areas for improvement, so I hope this feedback can help. I'd love to see you expand on the theme a bit.

Thanks! I appreciate all your feedback. It is really helpful to get feedback that covers the entire game and is specific.
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