Recommend
3 
 Thumb up
 Hide
17 Posts

BoardGameGeek» Forums » Board Game Design » Works in Progress

Subject: [WIP] Bowerbird Blues - 2017 2P PNP Design Contest rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Bowerbird Blues

My second entry into the 2017 2-player PnP Design Contest

Design and graphics by Roxanne Clark


COMPONENTS READY

A short filler game involving bidding and dice rolling.

Meet the male Satin Bowerbird

He is a bird obsessed, obsessed with the colour blue. Back in the old days he would have scored the forest for every blue feather, berry or flower that he could find but these days, with the humans moving in closer and closer to the edge of the forest he suddenly has access to high tech plastic items.
Every item is brought back to his display gallery (or Bower) and placed with care in the hopes of catching the eye of at least one of the local ladies. Fortunately for him, the ladies are also just as enthusiastic as he is for the colour blue but they have a choice of bowers to visit and are very picky.

Each player represents a male Bowerbird trying to collect as many choice blue items, for his bower, as possible. Each player has 2 actions per turn. An action is either to place one of his 4 next to a desirable item or to roll a number of dice equal to the number of tokens that he has next to one of the items. Each item has a target number that needs to be rolled in order that it can be collected (either 4+, 5+, or 6), the dice are nit added together. The items with the higher targets give bonuses in attracting the ladies at the end of the game.

Files:
Components and Rules- https://www.dropbox.com/sh/y177i261jckzyj7/AADhkprTRZHKeHOIb...
The components are all on one A4 sheet. Plus you will need 4 dice (preferably blue!) and 4 tokens per player (light blue and dark blue?) that are small enough to be placed on the brown petals of the 3 forest areas (perhaps bottle caps etc from the recycling bin?)
Rules - one double sided A4

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Fuhrman
United States
Saint Paul
Minnesota
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Interesting! Love the theme, too. Will be eagerly anticipating rules!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Tuck
England
LONDON
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb

Interestingly, a game from the recent 18 card contest had the same theme: Bowerbird

I remember it well because I created this logo for the game (and, by way of research, read up all about this fascinating bird).


May be worthwhile checking it out.

3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Marty Lund
American Samoa
Ontonagon
Michigan
msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Good luck!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
tucky60 wrote:

Interestingly, a game from the recent 18 card contest had the same theme: Bowerbird


Thank you for he link, very interesting and fortunately in a different direction to mine in that it focuses on arranging rather than the acquiring.
I like the logo
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The first version of the rules is now in my dropbox folder.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I've just added a second rules version, this time with doubles bonuses added in.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
JK
New Zealand
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
Hi Roxanne. Welcome to the contest (again). Hooray - another natural history theme! Good luck. JK
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
JohnKean wrote:
Hooray - another natural history theme!


Of the many games that I have come up with only 2 have not had a natural history theme (and one of them was only because the theme was imposed upon the game by a friend asking me to make a game to go with his Kickstarted graphic novel).

Incidentally if anyone would like to volunteer to test my Punic wars card game after the contest deadline has gone I would be very grateful and I would be able to offer you a testing credit on a published game.(https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/smiletitans/in-search-o...)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
JK
New Zealand
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
Roxanne,
Can you please edit your top post to add a list of the prize categories you want to be entered in, and then post an OK message here so I know to add it to the lists.
Thanks!
JK
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Morton
msg tools
I don't have another playtester on hand at the moment, but I had a chance to read through the v2 rules for Bowerbird Blues. Some impressions I got from the rules document follow.

Firstly, unrelated to the rules themselves: the font used for presenting the rules didn't render well on the screen I was using to view it, making the document a bit hard to read.

Once I managed to decipher the font, I was impressed with the opening sections. The introduction was just long enough to convey the theme without being too wordy; the "Components" section was a refreshing departure from the stereotypical "list of components" that accompanies most games; and the set-up diagram was incredibly clear and concise. The rules for the two game phases were, for the most part, equally clear and concise.

The "Additional Bonus Effect" table was less clear to me. Since it was not referenced in any of the other rules, I found myself wondering if the table was an optional rule or an official part of the game. Also, if a player rolls two doubles on four dice, do both effects apply? Also, (if I had no prior exposure to games that have "free actions," I'd wonder) what does "as a free action" mean? Most readers will be able to arrive at satisfactory answers to these questions easily enough, but those answers are only implied by the official game rules, not stated outright, so they don't feel 100% "official," as it were.

That being said, it took me only one read-through of the rules to understand how the game is played and scored (especially when no one is rolling doubles). I can immediately picture the interactions between the players, and can connect them to the game's theme in an obvious way.

All in all, a solid game. If I had the necessary components on hand, I would definitely consider playing Bowerbird Blues to fill some time between longer games.

Kudos and good luck,
Eric Morton.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
JK
New Zealand
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
PLAYTESTER SPOT PRIZES

This game is eligible for a playtester spot prize for the next week!

See this post for more details.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
New rules now up. A minor tweak insists on even filling of the female bird piles and a reformatting gets rid of the ugly table.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Martijn van der Lee
Netherlands
Bussum
Noord Holland
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmb
Hi, just playtested your game and I've got some feedback.

I printed in B&W, but DID use blue dice and tokens.
Game ended in 2:1.

I'm sorry to say that I didn't really like this game. Mostly it's the randomness in phase 2. In general I just don't feel like I'm truely making meaningful choices.

Components
* A thicker border around the components would make them easier to cut out.
* The layout of the tile pages requires quite a large number of cuts. Aligning the components, and possibly resizing for the purpose, would make it easier.
* Mark the "female" sets with some sort of indicator to make it easy to split out the sets. I print B&W for prototyping and the photo's aren't easily distinguished.
* Round edges are harder to cut out. I understand it looks cooler, but for print&play it's not necessary. Alternatively, you could offer the spot tiles as a full page game board instead of cutouts.

Manual
* In the chapter about Rolling; I'd flip the order of the "if none" and "if any" chapters; the "none" follows from the "any", giving the reader some positive feeling for understanding the rules before reading.
* "If any ..." is a tiny bit ambiguous, how about something like "if any one ...".

Rules
* Should the player declare the spot for which he rolls before rolling?
* Can you roll twice for the same spot if you fail the first try?
* Double 3: What if the opponent has no tokens on any spot?
* Double 4: What if no token was "just used" (i.e. the item if 5+/6)?
* Double 4: If item taken; should new item be put on spot before or after the token is reused?
* Double 5: Can the player peak at the items before changing locations?
* Double 6: Can the player receiving the item look at the item?
* What happens to the tokens player A put on a spot when player B takes the item from that spot and there are no more items to put on that spot; should those tokens return to player A?
* In phase 2; what if after applying all the "stalemate" resolutions, there is still a stalemate for female card? It's probably unlikely, but not impossible.

Gameplay
* I found little variety in gameplay; it mostly seems to be going through the motions (especially phase 2). 3 tokens is usually enough to get a 5+ or 6 and 2 tokens for a 4 so the pattern of gameplay is rather fixed.
* In phase 2, a lot of randomness is applied to the tiles gather in phase 1. It wastes effort in phase 1. Perhaps 6 could use 3 dice instead of 2?
* Perhaps a wider range of items would work out. Perhaps a single 4 with 1 heart or a 5 with no hearts or an extra heart; that way the players have to weigh a bit of risk/reward instead of just going for the highest number. To me, the game would be a lot better if a new item revealed would make me change direction.
* Perhaps a third action ability to remove a single token, making it feasible to go change direction, if the risk of doing so pays off in phase 2.
1 
 Thumb up
10.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Tynes wrote:
Hi, just playtested your game and I've got some feedback.

Thank you so much for trying it and taking time to feedback, especially if it didn't appeal.
Tynes wrote:
I'm sorry to say that I didn't really like this game. Mostly it's the randomness in phase 2.
&
* In phase 2, a lot of randomness is applied to the tiles gather in phase 1. It wastes effort in phase 1. Perhaps 6 could use 3 dice instead of 2?

I had some doubts about whether or not to do the phase 2 randomisation as there is plenty of randomisation already added by the dice in phase 1 already. Perhaps it would be best to go back to my original scoring method of simply adding tile numbers to heart numbers.

Components
Tynes wrote:
* A thicker border around the components would make them easier to cut out.
* The layout of the tile pages requires quite a large number of cuts. Aligning the components, and possibly resizing for the purpose, would make it easier.
* Mark the "female" sets with some sort of indicator to make it easy to split out the sets. I print B&W for prototyping and the photo's aren't easily distinguished.
* Round edges are harder to cut out. I understand it looks cooler, but for print&play it's not necessary. Alternatively, you could offer the spot tiles as a full page game board instead of cutouts.

Thank you these are all valid points. I am on the verge of giving the ladies names in order to help distinguish them.

Manual
Tynes wrote:
* In the chapter about Rolling; I'd flip the order of the "if none" and "if any" chapters; the "none" follows from the "any", giving the reader some positive feeling for understanding the rules before reading.
* "If any ..." is a tiny bit ambiguous, how about something like "if any one ...".

I can certainly swap things around.

Rules
Tynes wrote:
* Should the player declare the spot for which he rolls before rolling?

Yes - I will atempt to clarify that in the rules.
Tynes wrote:
* Can you roll twice for the same spot if you fail the first try?

Not unless you add more tokens later. After you have rolled you remove your interest tokens from the spot. Having done so you have no interest tokens left on the spot with which to make a valid roll. Perhaps it would be better if the tokens are withdrawn before you roll as it would make the double 4 bonus easier to understand and carry out.
Tynes wrote:
* Double 3: What if the opponent has no tokens on any spot?

The bonus doesn't take effect. I could add the comment "if they do not have any in play re-roll instead)"?
Tynes wrote:
* Double 4: What if no token was "just used" (i.e. the item if 5+/6)?

I have obviously not expressed this clearly enough. What I meant to say is that one of the interest tokens that you have just used to validate your roll (if they are removed before rolling then one of the interest tokens that you have just removed at the beginning of your roll) can be placed on a spot as a free action. By definition two or more tokens will always have just been used in order to have rolled a double.
Tynes wrote:
* Double 4: If item taken; should new item be put on spot before or after the token is reused?

Good question.Yes I think that the item should be replaced on the spot if it has been won before that decision is made - I will need to add that in.
Tynes wrote:
* Double 5: Can the player peak at the items before changing locations?

Yes I think that would be valid and you are right that it needs clarification.
Tynes wrote:
* Double 6: Can the player receiving the item look at the item?

Yes I think that would be valid too and you are right that that also needs clarification.
Tynes wrote:
* What happens to the tokens player A put on a spot when player B takes the item from that spot and there are no more items to put on that spot; should those tokens return to player A?

I prefer to leave them on the board stranded as stranding your opponent with fewer options would then be a viable end of game strategy. I will clarify that in the rules.
Tynes wrote:
* In phase 2; what if after applying all the "stalemate" resolutions, there is still a stalemate for female card? It's probably unlikely, but not impossible.

I have no objections to a draw at this point since it is a short game, perhaps this should be stated though.

Gameplay
Tynes wrote:
* Perhaps a wider range of items would work out. Perhaps a single 4 with 1 heart or a 5 with no hearts or an extra heart; that way the players have to weigh a bit of risk/reward instead of just going for the highest number. To me, the game would be a lot better if a new item revealed would make me change direction.

Mmmm, I shall investigate...
Tynes wrote:
* Perhaps a third action ability to remove a single token, making it feasible to go change direction, if the risk of doing so pays off in phase 2.

I'm not entirely certain that I have understood you here. Do you mean move an interest token from one spot to another? (which wouldn't seem to be an action that you are likely to want to make) or, since you mention phase 2, do you mean moving an already won item to a different female pile. (This I debated with myself for some time too but was afraid that it might potentially lengthen the game too much - I shall investigate...)

Thank you again
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roxanne Clark
United Kingdom
Sudbury
Suffolk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I have made the decision to withdraw this game from the competition. It was fun to make and design but it hasn't yet got enough real substance on its own to stand up as a game on it's own. Don't get me wrong, it's going on the back burner not in the bin, but I think it's destiny is either to evolve into something very different or become incorporated into something else entirely in the future.

My other game, Honeysuckle Harvest, is a much, much better game and so concentrating on that one is going to be a much better use of my (and any future play tester's time).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
JK
New Zealand
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
[q="MeOldMate"]I have made the decision to withdraw this game from the competition. [q]

Too bad, but there's always next year.
I have made the change.
JK
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.