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Subject: About me and my game rss

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Daniel May
United States
California
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designer
Who am I?
I'm a nobody. Nobody you've ever heard of anyway. But I designed a game, and if you're into deck building games and/or strategy games I think you'll really like it.

Why did I design a game?
I've played more than my fair share of strategy board games in my time. I love big, strategic games like Twilight Imperium 3. I also used to play M:TG a lot. My favorite part was actually designing the decks. Don't get me wrong, playing was fun. But the activity of coming up with new strategies and card combinations was, for me, the most stimulating part of the game.

So I really liked the idea of deck building games. But I couldn't find one that scratched the right itch. The problem was, for the most part, they felt like group solitaire to me. The player interaction was little to none, and it felt tacked on in the ones that tried to include it. So I set out to make a deck building game that scratched my particular itch, one designed specifically around the concept of direct player interaction. Six years later, here it is.

What is my game?
Warmonger. War (noun): a contest carried on by force of arms, as in a series of battles or campaigns. Monger (noun): a dealer in or trader of a commodity. I think the name perfectly encapsulates what the game sets out to accomplish. It's all about conflict and resources, a war game with the bones of a deck builder. The seamless integration of the two ideas was the tricky part. And I didn't want a game with fiddly mechanics. It needed to be simple in structure but have depth and strategy, with meaningful choices.

The Realms (map spaces) are each represented by a card that goes in your deck like any other card you buy. The difference is that you can't buy these cards, you have to fight over them. The player that controls the Realm on the game board always has the corresponding Realm Card in his or her deck as well.

The board is made up of a Market and a Realm Map. The two main actions you can take during the game are the Market Action and the Military Action. In a Market Action, you interact with the market to purchase new cards into your deck. In a Military Action, you interact with the map to add and move armies.

Battles between players can occur when a Realm Card is used in either of these actions. When a Realm Card is revealed on a player's turn, his or her opponents can declare Battle against that Realm and, if they win, take the card (and the space on the Realm Map) from that player.

Each card has different abilities depending on if it used in a Market Action, a Military Action, or in a Battle. Some cards have abilities in all three phases, some in only two, and some specialized cards only have abilities in one. But they all live in the same deck. You don't have a separate stack of battle cards (nor is combat power just another resource). This is where I think the game really shines. Your strengths and weaknesses will come from the decisions you make and the cards you choose to add to your deck.

The winner of the game is determined by Majesty Points (yes they are just victory points, but there's more to it). The beauty of it is that Majesty Points are gained from all of your cards. Realm Cards are worth by far the most MP, and are therefore more valuable than normal cards. This allows the win condition to strike a balance between being strictly area control vs strictly deck building. You might control less territory than your opponent but if you have a more efficient purchasing engine you still might win, and vice versa.

For a deeper dive into the mechanics of the game, the full rules are available here.

Where can you play/get it?
Right now, it's unpublished. It is, however, available to play on Tabletopia in its entirety. I worked hard to make it look polished and professional, and I think I mostly succeeded. The ultimate fate of the game depends on the amount of interest and support it gets here and on Tabletopia. This was a complete passion project for me, so I totally appreciate anyone who is willing to give it a look and am happy to respond to any questions or feedback. Thanks and happy gaming!

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