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Subject: Just invented a tile-laying game - "A to B"... rss

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Simon Beck
United Kingdom
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Not sure if this is the right place to post this, but I thought some of you might be interested in a game I've invented.

"A to B" is a dice-controlled tile-laying game for two players using two colour-coded sets of double-sided tiles of two different designs:


The board is a simple 8 x 10 grid with squares the same size as the tiles. Two opposite corners are designated Home Squares:


Object:
The object of the game is to complete a road leading from your Home Square to that of your opponent by placing, manipulating and removing tiles according to throws of a single standard die.

Rules:
Unless making the winning move (i.e. linking the two players’ roads), each player may only add tiles to a road leading from their own Home Square. Roads may start from the top or side edge of the Home Square or both.

Two pedestrian crossings may not be placed together. In other words, two crossroads or two T-junction spurs cannot be placed together, and a T-junction spur cannot lead directly to a crossroad.

A stretch of road must lead either to another, to an unused square or to an edge of the board. A road cannot be interrupted by a verge.

A tile may be placed in any orientation that results in a legal layout.



Each number on the die has a different meaning:

1. Take a type 1 tile and place it on a vacant square with the straight road facing upwards.

2. Take a type 2 tile and place it on a vacant square with the 90-degree bend facing upwards.

3. Take a type 2 tile and place it on a vacant square with the T-junction facing upwards.

4. Take a type 1 tile and place it on a vacant square with the crossroad facing upwards.

5. You MAY rotate, turn over or both, any single tile on the board, but this must result in a legal layout. All junctions must remain legal, and existing roads may not be interrupted.

6. You MAY remove any single tile from the board, but this must not interrupt an existing road.

The first tile placed by each player MUST be in contact with an external edge of their Home Square. If a player throws a 5 or 6 in their first move they may throw again until they are able to place a tile.

If a player cannot make a move resulting in a legal layout they must forfeit their turn.



Play:
The players take turns to throw the die and place, turn or remove tiles on the board. The winner is the first to complete a road linking the two Home Squares. This is achieved by a player placing a tile which joins their road with their opponent’s road.

Conclusion:
Could you please let me know what you think of my game?

Thanks!


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P.D. Magnus
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If I understand the victory condition correctly, there is no reason for either player to grow toward the other.

Suppose player A is one move away from winning, then so is player B; the winner will be whichever one first gets the road piece that fills in that connects their road systems. If player A is one move away from winning because of a play she made, it'll be B's turn before A can play again. So A should never make a move that puts her one away from winning unless she's forced to.

So I worry that the whole game will be lots and lots of trying not to almost win, followed by victory for whichever player makes the roll required to connect up the roads.
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Rob Robinson
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What about having a vehicle Meeple/Veeple that can be moved instead of placing a tile. The Veeple has to make it to point B...?
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Mr Pavone
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I've seen chain building games like this before and they never did anything for me personally. My suggestion would be to put a home base in each opposite corner for both players and have them try to connect their bases rather than just the A and B points.

If you REALLY want to keep the name, then give Blue an A and B point and Red an A and B point.
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Simon Beck
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I've played the game against my wife and my two sons aged 7 and 10. The game-play lasts about 15 minutes, and in the later stages often involves the two players' roads running side-by-side (that is the reason for my wife's suggestion of colour-coding the players' tiles). It is possible for a potentially winning move to be scuppered by one's opponent throwing a 5 (rotate and/or flip) or a 6 (remove), so victory is not necessarily as predictable as pmagnus suggested. My father suggested that the tiles might be replaced by custom-printed cubes which could double as dice with four road faces and a "rotate" and a "remove" face, but this would be expensive!

Thanks,

Simon Beck
 
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Mark McEvoy
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zombiegod wrote:
What about having a vehicle Meeple/Veeple that can be moved instead of placing a tile. The Veeple has to make it to point B...?


This. I think the only way to make this work is to have a 'pawn' that traverses the road system, such that you can set up a situation where a one-away-from-join could be a winning play for you but not for your opponent.
 
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Rob Robinson
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Get rid of the dice. Shuffling the stacks is just as random a method as rolling dice.
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Joe E.
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I'm afraid I don't have any useful feedback - just a comment:

butterfingersbeck wrote:


Hey, those look like LEGO road baseplates. Imagine playing this with those plates and all the space you'd need...
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Tim Schmitt
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It seems to me that it wouldn't be all that interesting until the two players road systems get close to each other... and then it won't be long before it's over.

Just a thought - what if you make it points based, where you get more points if you have more tiles in the connection path once it's completed? This would encourage approaching each other's road systems more directly. Maybe in practice it wouldn't be so different from what you've already got, if what you say is true and roads tend to build up alongside each other.
 
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Chris Cisne
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Sounds like a fun game, but from what pmagnus and you said it seems like it might still be prone to people trying not to get into a victory-giving position; and maybe even giving victory (once the tracks are close enough) to the person who's opponent's unlucky enough to get scuppered by the dice, which would be frustrating for the loser.

This is an off-the-top-of-my-head suggestion, and may not be that feasible but thought I'd offer it anyway: what if you introduce a bit of an Othello-esque element into the rules?

For instance, you could give each player two starting locations diagonally opposite each other, and give the victory to whoever has the most tiles on the board when their road connects to one of their opponent's starting locations first.

If your road connects to your opponent's road, replace all their tiles which are in a straight line (from your connecting tile up to & including the nearest corner tile) with identical ones of your colour. (In other words, when two differently coloured roads touch, everything on that 'straight' of the road gets converted to the active player's colour.) This could see a lot of tactical snaking around and use of junction tiles to give players branching 'side roads' to flank their opponent with.

For this to work best it might be worth sacrificing the dice too and letting players play or remove a tile of their choice each turn - under this variant a choice instead of dice would certainly give more intersting tactics. (In fact, to avoid endgame stalemates - say by a losing player trying to 'block' off their starting locations by surrounding it as much as possible with corner tiles' verges - it might be an idea to let players take two actions a turn, eg play two tiles, remove two, or play one and remove one, so that a player close to fulfilling the victory conditions can make a sweep up their win.)

Anyway, that might not work for you, but I was at my keyboard so figured I might as well type something! Good luck with the game, and I look forward to hearing more about it!
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Simon Beck
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Thanks for the feedback, everyone! I like the idea of each player having two opposite corners as Home Squares, but I'll have to try a few variations - should the winner simply be the first to connect their own corners (shades of Twixt) or should the possibility remain to hijack the opponent's road and win in that way? Does joining A to A or B to B count? Regarding getting rid of the dice, it's a neat idea, but you then have to find a way to introduce the "rotate/flip" and "remove" operations. Maybe extra tiles. But each player will still need a full colour-coded set...

Interestingly, the main problem I had with making the prototype set was getting the printer registration accurate enough to make double-sided tiles...

I'm enjoying this.
 
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Stephen Brian
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I say the proof is in the playing. Let's play the game and see how it works.

I'll be red. I rolled a 2. I put the 90 degree bend in the space just south of A with the open end pointing east. I'll try to post an image.


Edited to add: The image will have to wait. I apparently can't upload it without a game listing with which to associate it and I can't upload it to an external image hosting site from this computer.
 
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Rob Robinson
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Uncle Pennybags wrote:
I apparently can't upload it without a game listing with which to associate it and I can't upload it to an external image hosting site from this computer.


Upload it to your Personal Images
 
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Simon Beck
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I trust you guys...

Make your own set. The following GIF files are A4 size and ready to print.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/661581/butterfingersbeck?...

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/661582/butterfingersbeck?...

Either print the tiles on both sides of a piece of card or print two copies and stick them back to back before cutting them out. I got my wife to laminate both the tile sheet and the board - I call her "The Laminatrix"!

Enjoy!!!
 
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Stephen Brian
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zombiegod wrote:
Uncle Pennybags wrote:
I apparently can't upload it without a game listing with which to associate it and I can't upload it to an external image hosting site from this computer.


Upload it to your Personal Images


Thanks.

Now my problem seems to be the security software on my employer's computer. It seems to be blocking the upload. I guess I'll just have to get back to work.

Meanwhile, will someone play blue?

Steve
 
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Stephen Brian
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Ok, here's the board after my first turn:

 
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Simon Beck
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Has anyone tried printing and making a set?
 
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Jonathan Warren
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zombiegod wrote:
What about having a vehicle Meeple/Veeple that can be moved instead of placing a tile. The Veeple has to make it to point B...?


I have a very similar game game that works with road tiles. It is currently still 'in development' - and has been for about a year now... You will find it here on BGG: P.O.B.

This also began its early life on a square grid gameboard, but that idea has been dropped. Although the mechanics are different to this game, in some ways it's very similar indeed.
 
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Stephen Brian
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butterfingersbeck wrote:
Has anyone tried printing and making a set?


I made a set. I may be able to play a few games tomorrow with my group.
 
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