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Colors'n'Shades v0.4 Rules and Cards on Google Docs

Description:

In the game of Colors ‘n’ Shades, players are secretly assigned to one of two teams. The Loyal team seeks to build up the Loyal score to reach 10 points. However, the Rebel team seeks to bring that Loyal score down instead! There’s a good chance that the Loyal team will succeed at the beginning of the game; however, sometime in the middle of the game, players may be reassigned to the Rebel team!

Number of Players:

Two to Ten players. The game is more intense and interesting with more players! Bring this game to your next party!

Components:

10 Character Cards -- describing the faction(s) each player is in.
4 Faction Success placeholder cards, and 1 Loyal Score placeholder card
20 Loyalty Cards -- assigning each player to one of two teams.
60 Challenge & Participation Cards -- winning these leads to either increasing or decreasing the Loyal score
Several counters to indicate the level of faction success and the Loyal score.

The discussion below is about the game as it evolved, so if you want to pick up the thread from where the current version was released, you should start at this point
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
(original top post read: )
Stormtower wrote:
Working on a new card game.

Going to save this top part of the thread to store the latest update.

Discussion will start (somewhere) below.



v0.4 posted April 1, 2011 2:06 pm
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
So, I was typing stuff in furiously last night. Probably got 500-750 words in. Fortunately for all of you, that was when my internet connection decided to bug out. (Damn this hotel wireless!)

Which is a good thing, now that I think of it -- as none of you would probably have the patience to slog through that.

So, I'm going to start this off with a vision of a sample game, rather than rules and mechanics.

You are Bob, playing a character in this game with a "Red + Blue" faction. Your fellow players are Andy ("Red + Yellow"), Frank ("Bright + Yellow") and Chuck (Bright + Blue). At the beginning of the game, each of you also got 7 cards. Six of those cards match one of your colors -- so you have 3 red cards and 3 blue cards. The last card was random; and you have a Bright card. You also got a card at the beginning of the game, and it reads

"Same -- if this is the start of the game, you are LOYAL. If this is the mid game, then your faction is still what it was at the start"

From what the guy teaching the game says, there's 2 possible REBEL players -- and those guys are trying to make everyone else lose at the game. The game is supposed to be about building up ... something. Let's say for now that you're building up a democratic government.

The four colors (RED, BLUE, YELLOW, BRIGHT) are the factions; and the 4 players are representatives, with strong ties to only 2 factions.


The game starts.

You look at the cards in your hand. The guy teaching the game says that you may discard one of your cards in exchange for a random card from the remaining deck. Each of your cards has 2 parts to it: One part has a single color, and a number -- that's supposed to be the "Strength" of the card. The other part has TWO colors, and has a "Challenge" on it. Guy says that's the next step in the turn.

You decide to change your Bright card ... maybe you can get a Red or Blue. You don't, you get a Yellow card. The other players make their own choices...

Next, the discards are shuffled back into the deck. Four cards are dealt face up, and everyone is invited to read the CHALLENGE portion of the cards. The Guy says that the two colors indicate what cards will Support the challenge; and the other two colors will Oppose it.

The challenge cards on the table are: Red/Yellow; Bright/Red; Bright/Blue; Blue/Yellow. Each of them indicate that supporting them will add 1 point toward having the LOYAL players win the game.

Four more cards are now dealt out face-down under each of the challenge cards. These represent the unknown support/opposition from "people" aside from the players.

Now, each player gets to allocate zero or more of their cards onto the face-up challenges. (Not sure if this will happen simultaneously, or player-by-player). Once everyone has placed the cards they want, the cards in each pile are shuffled (to disguised who placed what), and revealed. The tallies are totaled for support and opposition. Guy announces that 3 of the 4 challenges have succeeded, so the LOYAL players gain 3 points; but 1 has failed, so the LOYAL players only gain a net of 2 points.

This repeats several times. All the cards are collected, every player gets 7 cards, and challenges are revealed and "voted" on.

Sometime mid-game, everyone gets a card from the LOYAL/REBEL deck. Bob draws "REBEL" this time ... so now he will want to orchestrate his cards such that the challenges cause the LOYAL players to lose points.

Game ends when the LOYAL players get to 10 points... or when they are at 0 points (they started the game at 4 points).
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
This will make more sense when there are card mock ups I suppose.
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
jmucchiello wrote:
This will make more sense when there are card mock ups I suppose.


Your wish is my command!

Colors'n'Shades 4 player cards
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
continuing a thread which somewhat branched out of Design philosophy poll: reversing victory conditions
Kaffedrake wrote:
Stormtower wrote:
In the game I'm developing:
(this thread) (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (secret teams / hidden traitor(s) game for 2-10 players)
the players are somewhat forced to play well. There's a random element that might push the game to end _before_ that midgame change-of-loyalties may occur. In fact, the players can take the strategy of pushing for a victory before the midgame changes.


Looks like you're trying to boil down Galactica into a quick, no-nonsense design and you have my moral support. (I couldn't help noticing that you have four colours and thus six possible colour pairings, but use eight pairings on your cards. Bug or feature?)


I'm not entirely sure what you meant by "eight pairings". I'm pretty sure I can only get six pairings out of the four colors (unless I'm mistaken...). Mind clarifying where you saw eight pairings? Thanks!

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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
Turns out this was from misreading your sample game as a description of the game - four players using four specific pairings and then the challenge using four other specific pairings, meaning two would be repeated. I assume that the players draw their identities from a set of six and the challenges are either drawn from a similar set of six or else drawn from a deck with multiple instances of each pairing. I also assume my name isn't necessarily Bob.
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Re: (WIP) Colors'n'Shades (abstracted hidden traitor(s) game)
Kaffedrake wrote:
I assume that the players draw their identities from a set of six and the challenges are either drawn from a similar set of six or else drawn from a deck with multiple instances of each pairing.


Multiple instances would be the case. I have a barebones version of both of the cards in the google docs:
Colors'n'Shades 4 player cards

First 2 pages are the Challenge/Participation cards. There are six instances of each pairing.

The last page has the character cards (set of 6) and the loyalty cards.

I actually have all the loyalty cards there for up to 6 players; but there are only enough Challenge/Participation cards on the first 2 sheets for 4 players. You would need to print out a second set of the first 2 sheets to have enough for 6 players.
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New version :
Colors'n'Shades v0.4 Rules and Cards on Google Docs

Description:

In the game of Colors ‘n’ Shades, players are secretly assigned to one of two teams. The Loyal team seeks to build up the Loyal score to reach 10 points. However, the Rebel team seeks to bring that Loyal score down instead! There’s a good chance that the Loyal team will succeed at the beginning of the game; however, sometime in the middle of the game, players may be reassigned to the Rebel team!

Number of Players:

Two to Ten players. The game is more intense and interesting with more players! Bring this game to your next party!

Components:

10 Character Cards -- describing the faction(s) each player is in.
4 Faction Success placeholder cards, and 1 Loyal Score placeholder card
20 Loyalty Cards -- assigning each player to one of two teams.
60 Challenge & Participation Cards -- winning these leads to either increasing or decreasing the Loyal score
Several counters to indicate the level of faction success and the Loyal score.
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Stormtower wrote:


I should note that one of the biggest changes I made in this version is that there are 5 loyalty cards dealt for a 2 player game (two of those cards are "rebel"). So it is entirely possible that both players in a 2-player game start out as being on the same team (and end up psyching each other out).

I'm still debating building in that kind of uncertainty into the games that involve 3-or-more players. Right now, most of my playtesting deals only with the 2 player game. (Yeah, yeah, I'm aiming kinda high right now by having everything ready for 10 players!)


If you guys are able to test this out, let me know what you think! I'll probably update again after a week or two.
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Well, as others have pointed out your game is just BSG: the card game. The good thing is you've taken the best mechanics from BSG; however, it appears that you've taken all your mechanics from BSG. I refuse to play BSG because of how long it takes, even though I really enjoy secret teams/hidden traitor games - so at least this will be shorter. I just think you need to add something original to consider this a "new" game.
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nswoll wrote:
Well, as others have pointed out your game is just BSG: the card game. The good thing is you've taken the best mechanics from BSG; however, it appears that you've taken all your mechanics from BSG. I refuse to play BSG because of how long it takes, even though I really enjoy secret teams/hidden traitor games - so at least this will be shorter. I just think you need to add something original to consider this a "new" game.


Yes, I'm definitely still seeking that "something original".

But I'm happy that you've found that it is essentially a distillation of the "best mechanics from BSG". That, to me, means I've at least succeeded on one possible step in this game's design. Thanks!
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Alright, let's talk "theme".

To me, this kind of game is naturally wrapped in some kind of political theme, especially due to the social interaction, the "factions" I've built into the game, and the hidden agendas.

So, after considering things like
-- a modern democracy (let's say, some nation that the US has "liberated" from a dictator is now trying to build a democracy ... problem lies within the various existing factions trying to hold onto their power)

-- past history (the birth of the USA was not entirely straightforward)

-- alternate timeline of past history (play "what-if" with history)

-- ancient 4-way political splits ... (I've done research on the Diadochi that followed Alexander the Great's death. But I'd have to play "what-if" again there, as the game is certainly not the bloody conflict of the Diadochi Wars)


I'm now considering going 10-20 years into the future, and considering a possible future situation. So ... entertain this thought for a moment:

four old nations ...

Great Britain (Blue)
Germany (Yellow)
Spain (Red)
France (Bright)

... are now merging into one. In the 20 years between 2011 and 2031, the citizens of these nations have traveled and mingled. Their separate governments and militaries have joined forces in the past, and have now found reason (I'm not sure what) to officially form one united nation.


Does that sound intriguing? Or should I pursue the Diadochi instead?
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Stormtower wrote:
Alright, let's talk "theme".



four old nations ...

Great Britain (Blue)
Germany (Yellow)
Spain (Red)
France (Bright)

... are now merging into one. In the 20 years between 2011 and 2031, the citizens of these nations have traveled and mingled. Their separate governments and militaries have joined forces in the past, and have now found reason (I'm not sure what) to officially form one united nation.


Does that sound intriguing? Or should I pursue the Diadochi instead?


Economics. We're already seeing European nations blending economically and militarily today. It's not outside the realm of possibility that they would merge completely. This could be an interesting near-future-themed game.
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kurthl33t wrote:
Stormtower wrote:
Alright, let's talk "theme".

four old nations ...

Great Britain (Blue)
Germany (Yellow)
Spain (Red)
France (Bright)

... are now merging into one.....


Economics. We're already seeing European nations blending economically and militarily today. It's not outside the realm of possibility that they would merge completely. This could be an interesting near-future-themed game.


Yes! I was thinking of that as a key point.

So, let's play out a nightmare scenario: China "buys out" the USA, and becomes a superpower. The old United Nations collapses, as they've regularly relied on USA before. Looking out for their mutual interests, Britain, Germany, Spain, and France seek unity ... perhaps rekindling thoughts of the old Western Roman empire.
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Stormtower wrote:
kurthl33t wrote:
Stormtower wrote:
Alright, let's talk "theme".

four old nations ...

Great Britain (Blue)
Germany (Yellow)
Spain (Red)
France (Bright)

... are now merging into one.....


Economics. We're already seeing European nations blending economically and militarily today. It's not outside the realm of possibility that they would merge completely. This could be an interesting near-future-themed game.


Yes! I was thinking of that as a key point.

So, let's play out a nightmare scenario: China "buys out" the USA, and becomes a superpower. The old United Nations collapses, as they've regularly relied on USA before. Looking out for their mutual interests, Britain, Germany, Spain, and France seek unity ... perhaps rekindling thoughts of the old Western Roman empire.


I'd play that.
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Two backstory/themes appear below. Generally, treat each one on their own merit -- but if you can, pick one over the other.

Feel free to comment as well.


Poll: Western European Confederacy
The Chinese Empire has bought out both Japan and the United States of America; and in the process, seized the two countries' military and technological assets. China then became an arms merchant, selling military and technology to anyone who can afford it. World War III started in 2025, as the Middle East once again erupted, and nations were forced to take sides.

But this is not about that war.

The year is 2031, and World War III is over. The four nations of Great Britain, Germany, Spain, and France have emerged victorious ... but only barely. The leaders of these nations have realized the true value they may gain in merging their countries as a Confederation; and are now engaged in a great European Convention.

The players are representative members of this great European Convention, having been selected for the task due to the influence they have in the various countries. And although there is much to be said to support the creation of a Western European Confederacy, there are still people who believe that the countries should remain divided; and the alliance should remain sufficient.

After all, the war is over, isn't it?
------------------------------------
Would you play a game with this theme?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
1 = I'd never play this game with this theme.
11.7% 21
2 = I might play it, but not for the theme.
40.8% 73
3 = Interesting theme, I'd play it.
25.1% 45
4 = Nice theme, work on it a bit more, it's promising.
19.0% 34
5 = I absolutely love this theme, wouldn't change anything.
3.4% 6
Voters 179
This poll is now closed.   179 answers
Poll created by Stormtower
Closes: Sat Apr 30, 2011 6:00 am


Poll: Forum of Diadochi
The year is 323 BC. Alexander the Great has died, and the empire is in the hands of his generals. In our history, several wars were fought between these generals and their armies and supporters as they tore the once mighty empire apart.

Consider an alternative timeline.

The generals gather together in a grand forum, hammering out agreements to ensure a peaceful resolution to the governance of the empire. It is not an easy task, for each general knows how much power Alexander once wielded -- and that power can easily be taken with a few key allies, and a few strategic moves.

The players play the part of the generals, attempting to forge an agreement that will allow all to enjoy the fruits of their victories. But a few may be saboteurs of that plan, seeking to sow enough discontent to cause the forum to fail.

After all, who do you think was behind the assassination of Alexander's father? And isn't it possible that Alexander himself was assassinated?
------------------------------------
Would you play a game with this theme?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
1 = I'd never play this game with this theme.
5.4% 9
2 = I might play it, but not for the theme.
36.7% 61
3 = Interesting theme, I'd play it.
35.5% 59
4 = Nice theme, work on it a bit more, it's promising.
16.9% 28
5 = I absolutely love this theme, wouldn't change anything.
5.4% 9
Voters 166
This poll is now closed.   166 answers
Poll created by Stormtower
Closes: Sat Apr 30, 2011 6:00 am
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Added another poll, as the responses seemed to show almost the same level of interest in either theme.

Poll: Which theme did you like more?
Of the two themes presented, which one did you like more than the other?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
I didn't like either one of them
15.8% 26
Western European Confederacy -- after World War III
29.1% 48
Forum of Diadochi -- after Alexander the Great
47.9% 79
I like them both, too close to call.
7.3% 12
Voters 165
This poll is now closed.   165 answers
Poll created by Stormtower
Closes: Sat Apr 30, 2011 6:00 am
 
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so far ...


..... Europe ... Alex
..... Confed ... Diadochi
1 ... 5 ... 3
2 ... 28 ... 21
3 ... 10 ... 18
4 ... 17 ... 12
5 ... 3 ... 5

..... Europe ... Alex ...
..... Confed ... Diadochi ... both ... none
like. 9 ... 29 ... 5 ... 3


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It seems that the post-Alexander Diadochi will be my current focus... and that's somewhat fortunate, as I will have more material to use in attaching meat to the mechanical bones. With the European Confed, I'd need to either invent or do a lot of research into the politics of the region.


..... Europe ... Alex
..... Confed ... Diadochi
1 ... 12 ... 6
2 ... 48 ... 34
3 ... 31 ... 44
4 ... 24 ... 23
5 ... 5 ... 7

..... Europe ... Alex ...
..... Confed ... Diadochi ... both ... none
like. 29 ... 57 ... 12 ... 11

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