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Portponky
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This is a submission for the 9 card nanogame contest.

Summary

Too Many Chefs is a social deduction game where two teams of chefs attempt to create a delicious/disgusting meal. It is a 2v2 game, and can optionally include an additional netural player. Each game lasts around 2-5 minutes.

Content

Only six cards (and no components) are required for the game, but I have added two helper cards and a rules reference card. This brings the total to nine cards, though only six are part of the game.

Files are available in this folder which includes png and pdfs of the cards, low(ish) ink cards and a rules pdf. If you want to check out the rules by themselves, they are available as html here.

There is also a tabletop simulator mod.

Categories

I would like to enter this game for the follow categories:

Best Overall Game
Best 3 or more player Game
Best New Designer
Best Card only game "no components"

Thanks for reading.
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Joseph Propati
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
Welcome to the contest
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Garry Hoddinott
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
Based on rules reading this certainly deserves to be in the Quick and Dirty Catalogue. What a funky game idea. (Components) are decent and menu (rules) are easy to read, go to game about 3 minutes! Well done. (or should that be medium rare!)

No doubt you have a few other ideas based on this mechanic. Please share before the pot boils dry!
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Rachel Bruner
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
GarryHoddinott wrote:
Based on rules reading this certainly deserves to be in the Quick and Dirty Catalogue. What a funky game idea. (Components) are decent and menu (rules) are easy to read, go to game about 3 minutes! Well done. (or should that be medium rare!)

No doubt you have a few other ideas based on this mechanic. Please share before the pot boils dry!

Haha!


Yes, the graphics look good but I haven't had time to read the rules but hope to do so next week. I'm intrigued to learn more. I have no cooking or food puns to share, though.
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Portponky
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
Thanks for the comments. If you do try it out, let me know how it goes.

GarryHoddinott wrote:
No doubt you have a few other ideas based on this mechanic.


I guess the main mechanic is basically card counting. The deck is small and easy to remember, so you can often guess what others have by how they behave.

I think this kind of mechanic lends itself well to 9 (or fewer) card games. I have another idea for a programming game in the same style.
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Portponky
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
Thanks to the players who playtested this at GDC. I will update the cards graphics and symbols and upload a new version when I get home (the gameplay will be the same).
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Portponky
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Re: [WIP] Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest - components ready
I have updated the art and simplified the card text. The vegetables card now features actual vegetables.

I also uploaded a 'deluxe' version with separate role cards (bringing the card total to 10 and 3 helpers). Obviously, the deluxe version is not intended for this competition, but it was requested by a few playtesters, so here it is. This is exactly the same game as the 6-card version.
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Rachel Bruner
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Portponky wrote:
I have updated the art and simplified the card text. The vegetables card now features actual vegetables.

I also uploaded a 'deluxe' version with separate role cards (bringing the card total to 10 and 3 helpers). Obviously, the deluxe version is not intended for this competition, but it was requested by a few playtesters, so here it is. This is exactly the same game as the 6-card version.

It's looking good!
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Jon Simantov
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Portponky wrote:
Thanks to the players who playtested this at GDC.

Thanks for bringing it to GDC, I really liked it!

I printed out my own set and played it with my social deduction group at work, a few games at 4p and one at 5p.

It went great! The first game was really fast (only 1 round), but subsequent games went much longer as everyone was super paranoid. Everyone seemed to enjoy it.

The Health Inspector did get a win in the one 5p game we played.

Nice job! I highly recommend this as a quick 4p/5p social deduction/bluffing game.
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Denis Buslaev
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I also had a chance to play it at GDC and I think this game is fantastic.
It plays great with 4 which for social deduction game isn't that common. The theme is very nice and can appeal to almost anyone. The underlying math is simple but at the same time, it's not trivial and actually requires thinking to figure out on the fly. Even if you screw up your math it's still fun and the game is short anyway.
The real-time interaction works, although I assume you can find a group where it won't be the case. Perhaps some rules or framework for getting out of we-can't-agree-on-what-to-cook-and-keep-going-around situation is needed although every group probably can figure this out on their own.
But the main thing is that the game is ridiculously fun and I can see it played with non-gamers and people who don't play social deduction games. It has a much lighter flavor to it.
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Portponky
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Thanks for playing, and thanks to the others who responded too.

If you check the rules, there is a tiebreak clause at the bottom, in which cards are shuffled and then added to the recipe at random. If you try to use it, people will quickly realise that their card is much more useful than a 50/50, so the main purpose of the rule is to motivate the chefs to use their own agency.
 
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Jon Simantov
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One more suggestion. The rules state that each chef MAY look at their own ingredient, but we had a case where sometimes a player would just always put their card in without looking at it, which seemed to invalidate the social deduction aspect of the game and basically make it random.

I'm not sure if you want to address that, but I think noting that each player MUST look at their ingredient would make the game better, or at least different.
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Portponky
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I used a polite phrasing. They should look at the dang card.

I will use your suggestion at some point, but as I have already sent these files for the competition, it will have to wait until afterwards.
 
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Jon Simantov
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I had a game today that lasted over 45 minutes, and eventually only ended because we ran out of time to play.

It was most of the players' first time playing, and the Good chefs identified each other really quickly because they were fully honest, while the other Evil chef and I lied. (interesting how the Good/Evil theme affects things in this game)

The Good chefs were very hesitant to approve any recipe that they didn't feel would be "safe" (e.g. just herb + chili, chili + one other ingredient, herb or chili alone) depending on what they had as a pair. This happened 5-6 times.

I think if Good lied a bit more they could have convinced Evil to approve one of those "safe" recipes with a positive score, maybe this gets better with experience.

One player did suggest a rule variant that if the main course goes N rounds without a team winning, you enter the "dessert" phase where the extra undealt card is automatically included in the recipe every round, to escalate matters further. (You could put numbers around the edges of the trash card and rotate it each round to keep count.)
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Portponky
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Hi Jon,

Chefs can disapprove all they want, but if they are unwilling to put their ingredient in (or take it out) then the recipe should proceed regardless.

The rules will be clarified to reflect this after the competition.
 
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Jon Simantov
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Ahh, so the only choice you can make is either to accept the recipe, or to toggle the inclusion of your ingredient. That makes sense. I'll play it that way a few times and report back - thanks!
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Portponky
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Re: Too Many Chefs - 2018 9 card nanogame contest
I've polished up Too Many Chefs since the nanogame contest. It has now been expanded to 14 cards (6 game cards, 5 role cards, 3 helper cards).

I have updated the print and play version and the rules (links same as above) for the expanded version.

I have published it on the game crafter for reasonably cheap.

Thanks to those who played it and for the feedback.
 
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