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Subject: Mineral Exploration & Mining Theme Board Game rss

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Matthew Lock
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I worked for a mining company that went bust because of the recession, when the metal prices tanked. But after I left I got an idea for a game mechanic. One big thing that we always lamented at the mine was that we started production too late, the metal prices had peaked before we went from exploring to production.

My idea is a game based on exploring minerals underground, maybe a 2D cross section of the ground with a tile laying aspect to explore the minerals. There could be metal price cards to flip over to randomly determine the metal prices or else a track with pre-set prices that fluctuate. It would be free to explore but you can't start making money until you become a production company and start extracting ore. But at that point exploring would cost money.

Any feedback ideas???

Thanks!
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Kevin Everingham
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This idea was done well in "Explorium: A high stakes mining extravaganza"... sorry; where I am, I can not link to games (firewall). The game was beautiful but I don't think that it really did great. I don't know if it was lack of advertising or lack of interest in the subject.
 
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Matthew Lock
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Yeah I see that, Explorium, I didn't know about that one. I will have to do it differently somehow. Thanks.
 
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Eric Boivin
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I know that Full Metal Planète has a space mining theme, but I'm not sure it fits your criteria!
 
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Paul Amala
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"Heke Heke": Hamsterish for "Huh?"
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Another one to look at for ideas is 2038: Tycoons of the Asteroid Belt
 
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Brett Hudoba
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Granted, it's a fantasy theme, but check out:

Dwarven Dig!
 
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Fraser
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Back in the days when there were less maps we played every map back to back
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Ooh a little higher, now a bit to the left, a little more, a little more, just a bit more. Oooh yes, that's the spot!
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and let's not forget Belter: Mining the Asteroids, 2076
 
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Gordon Walsh
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In a similar vein (pun intended) you might want to consider Giganten, an oil exploration and delivery game with a variable market.
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Matthew Lock
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Oh man! there are a lot more mining games out there than I knew about. Thanks for the info.

How do you game designers cope with the fact that so many themes and mechanics have been done already??
 
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Celina
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Mithril Miners was a product of a pnp challenge this year.

I think you should think about your idea. Never mind that people have done mining themes before. Since you worked in the industry, you know where the challenges are. Avoiding those can be part of the game.
 
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Paul Doherty
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mlock wrote:
I worked for a mining company that went bust because of the recession, when the metal prices tanked. But after I left I got an idea for a game mechanic. One big thing that we always lamented at the mine was that we started production too late, the metal prices had peaked before we went from exploring to production.

My idea is a game based on exploring minerals underground, maybe a 2D cross section of the ground with a tile laying aspect to explore the minerals. There could be metal price cards to flip over to randomly determine the metal prices or else a track with pre-set prices that fluctuate. It would be free to explore but you can't start making money until you become a production company and start extracting ore. But at that point exploring would cost money.

Any feedback ideas???

Thanks!


How about Cavum or Valdora?
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Mark Manning
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It's the "Simpsons-Did-It" issue - There are so many designers/companies/games/mechanics out there that you would be truly hard-pressed to design anything truly original anymore.

But a game is not measured by a single factor but by the sum of it's parts - Changing one detail along the design stage could radically alter the feel and playing style of a game into something different enough from existing models.

My advice; keep at it. Even if you only design the game to get a feel for the entire process and to work out your own style it is worth doing.

I like the concept; reminds me very much of an old arcade game "Dig-Dug" (Or something to that effect).

Perhaps what you could do is make the game a four-way event with a square board where you randomly place the tiles in the appropriate spaces provided. This means that players can come into direct competition for resources or might take advantage of other player's tunnels to reach new places faster.

Just my two cent.
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Matthew Lock
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Thanks for the encouragement, I plan on going ahead with something. Probably more from the geology and exploring angle than the mining tycoon approach.

I like the idea of square tiles, one because they don't seem to have been done by the other games mentioned and also because they are easier to cut out than hex tiles.
 
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Mark Slater
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Freya's Folly also has a mining theme.

Also the soon to be re-released Tinners' Trail

Sutter's Mill is set in an old west mining town
 
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