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Subject: Need help designing game for my daughter aged 5. rss

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Brian O'Neill
Ireland
Castleconnell
Co.Limerick
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Hi Guys.

I have never designed a game before (only been playing board games for two years - relative n00b ). I am not really looking to design anything beyond Print n Play for my daughter and initially for 2/3 players.

My daughter is almost 5 and likes playing card/board games with us. I'd like to create a card game for her that involves collecting items/treasure.

Now she loves My Little Pony so I was thinking of a card game based on My Little Pony (the artwork would be easy to get from various sites).

I was thinking of a name/theme like "Applejacks Apple Hunt" using mechanics of something like Ticket To Ride Card Game. Collecting cards to create sets that allow you travel to locations(decks) where you might find an Apple card.

Location Deck
Locations relevant to My Little Pony

Apple Deck
Each location would contain X number of apple cards and X dud cards. The Apple cards contain 1-3 apples per card. *Maybe add in X Villian cards that take apples off you. Also maybe, X number of Rainbow cards that give you bonuses.

Villian Cards
Villians, when drawn from the Apple Decks would do things like "lose one apple card", "Give one apple card to another player".

Rainbow Cards
Rainbows, when drawn from the Apple Decks would give you things like "Pick an Apple Card at random from another player".

Player Deck
6 cards. One for each of the main ponies. Each pony could have a special ability like "Applejack: Gets to pick two cards when searching for apple in apple deck" or "Rarity: Look at the top card of an Apple Deck", "Pinky Pie: Requires one less Travel Card to go to each location" etc...

Travel Deck
Each location requires a combination of travel cards to get to. Once you complete the matching set you then travel to that location and draw from its Apple Deck.

Start
Turn over the top 3 cards of the travel deck.

Each Round
1. Pick two travel cards from the cards available or two from the deck (top 2).
2. Travel to a location if you can.
3. Next player.

Misc Rules
>Cannot use a rainbow card on the same player twice in a row.

So I know this is VERY rough but is there an idea AT ALL in there ? Anything you see as a problem ? Some of the stuff is based on what I know my daughter likes such as stealing others apples.

Any help on this would be appreciated.

Regards,
Brian.
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Clay Blankenship
United States
Owens Cross Roads
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I like this idea. I think you have a decent game there. When I do a kid's game I always try to make it have some decisions so it is (somewhat) interesting for adults but make them simple enough or balanced enough that kids can play on a level with adults. Seems like you are doing that.

The simplest version of your set collection would have each location with it's own color (3 red for one location, 4 yellow for another). You could add a layer of decisions if there were combinations of colors, e.g. one place is 3 blue, another is 2 blue + 2 yellow.

I have a couple of working designs for this age range. One is a pick-up and deliver Thomas the Tank Engine game, and one is a game about cowboys trying to lasso wild horses (with dice and a map).
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Elisabeth Redel
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This is a really cute idea!

Maybe you can use real items instead of cards?
( I think children would love collecting "real" small apples more than card?!)

and maybe you can collect other items too. Books or flowers or...

And maybe it would be funny instead of villain cards to create friendship cards.

Like:

"Oh no, Apple Bloom would bake an apple cake but she haven't found any apples jet. Help her and give her 3 apples!"

or

"Twiglight is so bored today. Help her and give her 2 books!"

Because, you know "Friendship is magic"modest
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dug fromthearth
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I suggest doing this as a cooperative game - that is often better for kids and fits the My Little Pony theme better.

Instead of villain cards, have Accident cards. Each turn an accident happens and the ponies have to work together to gather the apples.

If you haven't played a cooperative game like Shadows Over Camelot, what happens is that each turn you do something good, and something bad randomly happens. The deck of bad cards takes the place of your opponent for the game.

I.E.
On Rainbow Dash's turn first she draws an accident card and something bad happens - like losing an apple.
Then she gets to take her action.

For a kid's game you can have the accidents sometimes have no effect, and maybe sometimes be helpful.

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Nigel Swan
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This would be a lovely game for a 5 year old. You could also put some animal cards on the accident events. Nice pictures and can help as well as hinder.
 
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Brian O'Neill
Ireland
Castleconnell
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Thanks for all the feedback and suggestions guys.

Some great ideas to work with. I like the idea of co-op and I can see why you would go with Accidents instead of Villians.

I'll have another think about it and see what happens. Will check back in soon (hopefully). Thanks again and keep the suggestions coming

 
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