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Subject: Mongolian Herding game rss

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I am thinking of making a card game based (loosely) on herding in Mongolia. The basic premise would be that players each take 1 of X area cards that are kept secret. They then try to build their herds of the "Five Noble Animals" (Camels, Sheep, Goats, Horses, Cattle). Each of the areas would have different winning conditions and animal-type bonuses. There would be wells, springs, wild animals (hurt herds), bonus animals (help herds), weather cards (spring rain, zud, etc.), larger clan size, and some over things. Also there would be an "extra" player (also with a hidden area card) that would take discards and could possibly win the game as well. I was also thinking of possibly having one area "wild" that would be the opposite of the other areas. The idea would be to grow your herds without letting the other players know your area. I don't know how to make it work out exactly and am offering the idea to all others that would like to help. Please reply with any ideas that you have.
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I am talking with some Mongolian friends to help keep it close to actual as gamingly possible.
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Wendell
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Interesting idea - what prompted it? Genghis Khan meets Agricola!

A couple of thoughts.

If not already in your plan, you could complicate things a bit by remembering that nomadic herders in Mongolia don't stay in one area all year - usually move 3-4 times a year to spots more suitable to the season.

Don't forget yaks! Not one of the five "mal" (animals) but they are herded in higher altitudes in Mongolia. They could be limited to certain areas that would be less suited to sheep and goats.

Would you have different animals worth different points?

What would interaction between players be?

Can't think of animals that HELP herds, only ones that hurt - ie, wolves, eagles.
 
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James Hutchings
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Did Mongols have the practice of stealing each other's animals? If so, that might be one way to have players interact.
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apeloverage wrote:
Did Mongols have the practice of stealing each other's animals? If so, that might be one way to have players interact.


Yak rustlin'
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James Hutchings
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wifwendell wrote:
Can't think of animals that HELP herds, only ones that hurt - ie, wolves, eagles.


Are there animals that the Mongols believed to be good omens?
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wifwendell wrote:
If not already in your plan, you could complicate things a bit by remembering that nomadic herders in Mongolia don't stay in one area all year - usually move 3-4 times a year to spots more suitable to the season.


This could be done by playing the game in some kind of rounds. You would lose some animals during the travels. Probably, a scoring of the areas and then another blind draw for secret areas (3 or 4 rounds per game)

wifwendell wrote:
Don't forget yaks! Not one of the five "mal" (animals) but they are herded in higher altitudes in Mongolia. They could be limited to certain areas that would be less suited to sheep and goats.


I was thinking of yaks (and caribou) as bonus animals that could only be used in certain areas (or trade bait)

wifwendell wrote:
Would you have different animals worth different points?


I am thinking that the base points for all the five noble animals would be the same, but the areas would increase the value to certain animals.

wifwendell wrote:
What would interaction between players be?


That is what I am working on trying to figure out. I think trading/raiding but need to check with my sources to see if this is realistic at all. In this vein I was thinking even of "spending" x number of sheep to host a feast for the other players so they cannot steal from you for a turn or so.

wifwendell wrote:
Can't think of animals that HELP herds, only ones that hurt - ie, wolves, eagles.


I know that falconry is used in Mongolia so falcons help, also the aforementioned yaks and caribou, probably dogs; maybe some "increase clan size" to protect and allow more animals (I know these are people and not animals). Also in Mongolian folklore there is a fox that protected a baby from a snake, so that is a possibility as well.

I am also thinking that you have to "spend/eat" a certain number of animals to keep your family alive, so bigger clan more animals to "spend/eat"
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Philip duBarry
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This sounds like an interesting idea (or at least the beginning of an interesting idea)! This game could be resource management, area control, card-driven, or some sort of tactical "gathering" of the animals. What kind of mechanics (or combination) are you aiming for?
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In terms of thematic flavor, you could try to work Mongolian throat-singing in somehow. They have a great singing tradition. And maybe knucklebones, the grand-daddy of dice, and still played there apparently?
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apeloverage wrote:
Did Mongols have the practice of stealing each other's animals? If so, that might be one way to have players interact.


    Technically, no. After executing everyone, I think it falls under the category of "salvage."

             Sag.


 
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JohnnyDollar wrote:
In terms of thematic flavor, you could try to work Mongolian throat-singing in somehow. They have a great singing tradition. And maybe knucklebones, the grand-daddy of dice, and still played there apparently?


And it helps to consume large quantities of formented mare's milk while playing.
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Andreas Kr├╝ger
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For player interaction:

I hope I don't confuse them with some other people, but don't they have famous wrestling events?

How do/ did they arrange marriages?

They certainly will have some sort of festival or meeting from time to time?

For scoring:

What would be their general purpose in life - would they seek honor, or riches, spirituality or just fun?
 
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JohnnyDollar wrote:
In terms of thematic flavor, you could try to work Mongolian throat-singing in somehow. They have a great singing tradition. And maybe knucklebones, the grand-daddy of dice, and still played there apparently?


Throat singing is still popular and highly honored along with the playing of the horse-head fiddle. Also knucklebones are still very prevalent among the Nomads.
 
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Delaric wrote:
I know Mongolians use horses a lot. Do they use dogs to herd at all? A dog herding game would be sweet.


I know that they have a lot of dogs, I don't know if they use them for herding or not. I will check on this.

Thamos von Nostria wrote:
For player interaction:

I hope I don't confuse them with some other people, but don't they have famous wrestling events?


They do have a very big wrestling tournament during Naadam and they prizes and titles.

Thamos von Nostria wrote:
How do/ did they arrange marriages?


I don't know traditionally how it is done. I will check into this as well.

Thamos von Nostria wrote:
They certainly will have some sort of festival or meeting from time to time?


The two huge festivals are Naadam in early July and Tsagaan Sar (a New Years celebration) in January or February. Naadam has the nation wide wrestling, archery, and horse racing tournaments.

Thamos von Nostria wrote:
For scoring:

What would be their general purpose in life - would they seek honor, or riches, spirituality or just fun?


I think that it is honor and riches (in terms of herd size) and fun.

 
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pdubarry wrote:
This sounds like an interesting idea (or at least the beginning of an interesting idea)! This game could be resource management, area control, card-driven, or some sort of tactical "gathering" of the animals. What kind of mechanics (or combination) are you aiming for?


I was leaning toward card-driven, resource management, tactical gathering type of thing. I am curious of your ideas how to do this.
 
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Where can I call to pre-order a beef one of these, with spring rolls and some egg-drop soup?

Oh god, my mouth is watering right now..
 
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You had me at Mongolian!! If you need someone to play test, send me a copy, my roomies are obsessed with everything mongolian thanks to south park.

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I dont fully understand your hidden field mechanism.

Without this mechanism this game sounds a bit like "stone age" OR you could use the "stone age" mechanism of placing meeples in various hunting areas. The cunning change for your game could be you have "hidden" units and each player places them on the fields.

Your units could be "hunters" "guards" and "something else" or "blank" (yeah yeah).
Each field needs some hunters to get the animals, a guard or two to escort them back to the pens/yurts/whatever and the blanks/something else are just so other players dont know what is going on until the reveal. That way people cant see if you are making a rush on "goat" and go for other resources.

Then you just need a mechanism to determine how players get guards/hunters/blanks and if you need a mechanism to move the animals with the guards. Also, need to determine if guards can fight each other or not and so on.
 
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Wendell
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dedbob wrote:
Where can I call to pre-order a beef one of these, with spring rolls and some egg-drop soup?

Oh god, my mouth is watering right now..


Dude, if this game came with REAL Mongolian food, your mouth wouldn't be watering. Spring rolls, egg-drop soup, all that stuff at Mongolian barbecues is CHINESE food.

Boiled mutton. Mutton stew. Mutton soup.

But the khyyrshyyr (meat pies, kind of ) aren't bad.
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Maybe it will come with Suutei Tsai (Milk Tea). I love the stuff!
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Wendell
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jeRm! wrote:
Maybe it will come with Suutei Tsai (Milk Tea). I love the stuff!


I agree, that was always good on a cold day!
 
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