joel davis
United States
California
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Distant Shores is a resource management and worker placement game. Set sail through a chain of islands, play it safe by trading goods between the ports you visit, or risk everything on expeditions to seek forgotten treasures and great discoveries.



Designed for the 2018 9-card PnP Contest



2 Players
30-45 minutes

Cards:
4 - Four Island cards (double sided)
1 - One Victory Point Track card
1 - One Discovery Map Card
2 - Two Ship Cards
1 - One City Job Card
TOTAL: 9

Components:
1 - One Flotilla Cube (the ship)
6 - “Resource Dice”
6 - Three Meeples for each player
2 - One VP track cube for each player
1 - Expedition Hat (A token or coin)
1 - Treasure Die
TOTAL: 17

Entry Categories:

Best Overall Game
Best 2-player Game
Best Thematic Game (Sci Fi, Horror, Fantasy, Dungeon Crawl, etc)
Best Written Rules
Best Artwork
Best New Designer


Download Links:
Distant Shores (Card Fronts)
Distant Shores (Card Backs)
Distant Shores Rules (V1.1)

Or one zip file with all of the above:
Distant Shores v1 Zip

Current Status: Components Ready

I'd love any feedback!
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joel davis
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Re: [WIP] Distant Shores - 2018 Nine Card PnP Contest (Prototype)
I'm moving this here so this thread will be a historical record of the game.




My goal is to end up with a simple and quick worker placement game with a bit more luck than most of them seem to have. Ideally the player will be able to decide how much risk she is comfortable with.

Still at a pretty early prototype stage but I wanted to post a thread. This is my first attempt at board game design and I am loving (and hating) the limits imposed by the contest here.
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joel davis
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Re: [WIP] Distant Shores - 2018 Nine Card PnP Contest (Prototype)

Ok, finally have a printable version and the rules have evolved enough so that it seems pretty fun to play.



The island cards are double-sided so that gives a lot of variety. So the game length and what resources you get early is slightly different each time you play.

I need to make some corrections and updates to the rules doc, but I'll post them soon in the top post. Still needs more balancing but I'm pretty happy with it so far...
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joel davis
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Alright, added download links to the rules and printable cards in the top post.

Going to work on tuning it a bit. Please let me know if anything in the rules are confusing or ambiguous!

Thanks, Joel
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Marcos Estevo
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Berebekan Katabamba, Berebekan Katabamba, Berebekan Katabamba...... Kikerá!!!!
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Seems pretty interesting. Is it solo?
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Joseph Propati
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Welcome to the contest!
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Joseph Propati
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marcosestevo wrote:
Seems pretty interesting. Is it solo?


I was going to ask the same question because then you'd have a doubly "is that even a word" cool game!
 
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Rachel Bruner
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Welcome to the contest! I like your game's look and will have to check it out.

joeld42 wrote:
This is my first attempt at board game design and I am loving (and hating) the limits imposed by the contest here.

Haha me too! "If I only use six dice I can add two extra cubes, but I need dice for such and such. Hm, what about doubling up the use of cubes?" The restrictions bring a lot of creative use of the cards and manipulation of components to keep them to 18!

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joel davis
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marcosestevo wrote:
Seems pretty interesting. Is it solo?


Right now it's two player only, but I'm hoping to add a solo variant by the deadline.

Here's my current solo rules that I'm working on, but I've only tested them a few times:

SOLO PLAY: Choose one of the dice to be a "Pirate Die". At the start of each turn (island) roll the pirate die and place it on one of the town squares (night market=1, tavern=2, etc...). That square is unavailable for this turn.

I still need to work up tables of what's a "good" score with this. That will give you a feel for the game, but the problem with it is if you choose a high-luck strategy it can come down to a couple die rolls at the end. This is (I think) exciting for two player since you usually have a solid target number to roll to beat the other player's score, but with one player it seems a bit pointless. So I'm probably going to do something like have a separate "Solo" discovery track on the back of the card with different scoring. If I have time...
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Joseph Propati
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Which categories will you be entering your game in?
 
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joel davis
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kingspud wrote:
Which categories will you be entering your game in?


I edited the top post to include Categories. I'll add it to "Solitaire" if I manage to get the solo rules right.

Got a playtest set up on thursday, will be interesting to get some outside opinions..
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joel davis
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Alright, made a bunch of updates to the rules. The biggest change was replacing the "Discovery Track" with a "Discovery Map" that you take a random walk on, which frees you up from feeling obligated to choose "Discovery" every turn, now it's more of a fun way to nudge the Explorer or grab a quick victory point.

For some reason I thought the deadline was tonight blush, so it's pretty much done, though I might take another pass at the artwork and making the rules a little clearer.

A typical score in my playtests is around 10-15 points, so don't feel like you're doing something wrong if you don't get up very high on the Score track, I just wanted to make sure it didn't run out of space. It depends a little bit on which Island cards you draw, too.

I did try working on a solo version (with pirate hunting), but it's not really fun. I might try to rework it but for now it's 2-player only.

I'd love any feedback, especially on things in the rules that were confusing or anything you got stuck on. Feel free to msg me on twitter at @joeld42 .

Thanks! This has been a lot of fun so far.


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Michel Wermelinger
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So far I've only read the rules and printed the cards, will try to find someone to play with over the next week. I like the clean art work. The rules are clear, the game looks interesting.

Some suggestions:

I think you need to make sure the cards are also centred on A4 paper, not just US paper, because otherwise (at least on my computer and printer) the backs and fronts don't align. Could also be that I did something wrong.

It would be better if the beige card background were slightly darker. I found it hard to see where exactly to cut. Again, this may just be my problem, or my toner's.

In the rules, you sometimes use different words (e.g. meeple, crew, explorer or discovery map and discover card) for the same thing, it would be better to unify terminology.

The heading 'turn resolution' sounded odd to me, first because it's not a turn but a round in which players take turns (first line of 'Choose jobs') to place their crew, and second because I don't see what is being resolved. I suggest "Playing a round" or similar.

The "Arrive at new island" section was hard to follow first not only because it mentions things that will only be explained later but also because it follows the sentence "Each turn consists of several Job actions" and so I was wondering what was the relation between jobs and arriving at an island. The latter came out of the blue. If the section were titled "Start of round" it would be clearer to me (principle of least surprise to the reader).

Phrases like a resource die being empty or non-empty (page 4) or the resource die being consumed (page 5) also sounded odd, because dice can't be empty nor consumed, it's the space in the ship that is empty or not and it's the resource that is consumed or not. I suggest to instead write whether the die is on the ship or in the supply.

I also didn't quite understand why sometimes a word was capitalised and sometimes not.

Sorry for nit-picking but hope you take it as a compliment that I couldn't see any real problem with the rules.

Looking forward to playing this and letting you know how it goes.
 
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joel davis
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Prof. Plum wrote:
So far I've only read the rules and printed the cards, will try to find someone to play with over the next week. I like the clean art work. The rules are clear, the game looks interesting.

Some suggestions:

...

Sorry for nit-picking but hope you take it as a compliment that I couldn't see any real problem with the rules.

Looking forward to playing this and letting you know how it goes.


Thanks for the feedback. That's not nit-picking at all, those are all great suggestions and I think a lot of those (like the different names for the meeples) were bothering me too but I couldn't really pin down or articulate what was off about it. Your comment really helped point out things that are specific (and fixable!).

I'll definitely do another editing pass on the rules and try to address these. I also feel like the rules could be a lot shorter, it's a pretty simple game really, but I'd rather be verbose than ambiguous for rules..

As for the fronts and backs being mis-aligned, that is a problem, and happens with my printer too. It seems like it should be lined up to me in photoshop, but I guess it's not. I'll take another look and see if I can align them better. You should be able to trim the island cards and not lose any info.

Thanks again,
Joel
 
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joel davis
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I updated the rules to make some things clearer, and hopefully improve most of the issues Prof. Plum pointed out, no rule changes in this version but hopefully easier to follow. Updated the links in the top post.

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Iyidin Kyeimo
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Feel like this game should be getting more love. I've only had one game of this so far (solo, playing both sides..), but really enjoyed it!

The different elements come together really well:

- The worker placement spots is tight enough to make it interesting, but there is almost always something to do.
- The discovery map is brilliant, this is a great mechanic, perfect interplay between randomness and control
- Island locations giving resources/treasure was enough to reward a bit of planning, but not too complicated
- A little bit of engine building as you try to increase your workers while achieving everything else
- Plus, the rulebook is clear and well laid out

I wasn't expecting much in the way of theme, but actually there is a fair bit that comes through.. really impressed!

Looking forward to testing it at 2-player!

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joel davis
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Thanks you Iyidin Kyeimo for the kind feedback! Let me know if you do play 2-players I'd love to hear what you think!

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