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Subject: I need some help getting the gears turning rss

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Terren C
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I call upon the power of the GEEEEEEEEK!!!!

...

Ok. I have an idea for a card game that may or may not use 6 sided dice and/or 22 or so wooden circular pieces.

"What is it about?" you ask.

Gravity. Plain and simple, gravity. I want to develop a card game that can demonstrate the factual and theoretical properties of gravity. Maybe even delve into the scienfictastical side of it, too. But I want the base to be real.

I've been reading a lot on the subject. I've come to find that gravity may be the least understood force in the universe. We don't really know what makes it tick. We don't know why things have mass. We can only theorize these things with words like "Higgs-Boson" and "graviton." Then throw in things like negative mass and anti-matter and dark matter and we've got a hobo stew of quantum uncertainty to a Heisenberg degree.

Basically, how do I make this a fun card game? My gears are stuck on this...
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todd sanders
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at the yearly Ye Olde Festival du Newton, Issace Newton lookalikes compete in an falling apple inspired face off of gravimetric proportions
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Nate K
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Stalp wrote:

Basically, how do I make this a fun card game? My gears are stuck on this...


What games do you like? And why do you find them enjoyable?

Do you like games that pit players against each other? Do you enjoy the thrill of pitting your intellect and luck against another's?

Do you like cooperative games? Do you enjoy working with other players to accomplish a goal?

Do you like thematic games? Do you enjoy being sucked into a story and experiencing a different world?

Do you like Euro games? Do you enjoy subtly honing your strategy across many plays to improve your performance against yourself and your opponents?

Do you enjoy party games? Do you enjoy laughing and socializing through the medium of gameplay?
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Terren C
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Quote:


Do you like games that pit players against each other? Do you enjoy the thrill of pitting your intellect and luck against another's?

Do you like cooperative games? Do you enjoy working with other players to accomplish a goal?



I enjoy the pvp aspect of games much more than I enjoy co-op board games. Co-op has its place, but not in this instance, I don't think.

Quote:


Do you like thematic games? Do you enjoy being sucked into a story and experiencing a different world?



Theme has never been a huge factor in the games I buy/play.

Quote:


Do you like Euro games? Do you enjoy subtly honing your strategy across many plays to improve your performance against yourself and your opponents?



Yes.

Quote:


Do you enjoy party games? Do you enjoy laughing and socializing through the medium of gameplay?



This just depends on my mood. I can tell you this is not the direction I want to go for this game.


I want a sort of epic euro feel. Something that really carries weight. Strategy is very important to me... even more so is the variety of strategy the game can support. If there are only one or two "winning" strategies, the game will not be fun. It will consistently devolve into the same game over and over. I want to avoid this.

Luck is fine by me as long as it is not the only driving force in a game. It needs to be controlled, but present. I feel that luck presents itself in every day life, so this should be mirrored in games somewhat (not always, of course).


I just need a kick in the right direction with this one. Then I will snowball it til its done.
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Nate K
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Stalp wrote:

I want a sort of epic euro feel. Something that really carries weight. Strategy is very important to me... even more so is the variety of strategy the game can support. If there are only one or two "winning" strategies, the game will not be fun. It will consistently devolve into the same game over and over. I want to avoid this.

Luck is fine by me as long as it is not the only driving force in a game. It needs to be controlled, but present. I feel that luck presents itself in every day life, so this should be mirrored in games somewhat (not always, of course).


I just need a kick in the right direction with this one. Then I will snowball it til its done.


Excellent! So you have a direction: Euro. And you want it to involve gravity.

So what are the players trying to do? How do they win?
 
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todd sanders
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well they certainly don't win through frivolity
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Ian O'Toole
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If you've decided upon gravity as your theme then a good thing to figure out next would be the goal of the game, and what it is that players take the role of.
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Brook Gentlestream
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I don't see how someone can start with a theme, seek for help to find rules to demonstrate that theme, and then turn around and say theme isn't that important...
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Sam Mercer
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Ok Terren,

1. "Gravity" is a game theme as much as "Heating" is a game. Sure it's a definite idea, but how on earth do you make a game from it?

2. Euros normally involve generating and assigning resource. As such, most euros give you some kind of resource and some kind of resource engine schematics that you can follow. This is easy with things like "Electricity Generation", "City Planning", "Merchant Trading" etc. But using a very abstract idea like "gravity" - I believe it will be hard for you to work out some kind of resource pool that can come from this . Which leads me to:

3. You may need something more than just the idea "gravity" - I think this is why you are stuck. Something like: magical wizards that need to keep the world functioning by maintaining gravity (using euro cubes of "mana" to plough into certain gravtational requirements - if certain aspects don't get maintained, then gravity starts wildly fluctuating appropriately. Or perhaps gravity is a huge factor in your "floating merchant business centre", or perhaps you have developed some kind of gravity changing device that you can leverage to your benefit; exploring all the ideas of gravity while you do it basically,

4. I don't think your game can be about "gravity" as much as a game could be about "Electromagnetism" or the "Nuclear Weak Force" or "Refraction of Light" or "Convection of Heat" - these aren't good titles for games, but they could supply some of the content for a game that uses their principals in a larger economic system.
The game could USE these ideas and the abstract scientific theory and plough it into a useful, practical, variable game. Eg, some ideas respective of the above:
Electromagnetism - Power Plant Economics
Nuclear Weak Force - Space adventure Star harvesting
Refraction of Light - Setting up trans-atlantic fibre optic cables,
Convection of Heat - Cooking Sim, Firefighting

But actually making a game about the science theory of gravity is going to be very hard. I think this is why you are stuck with idea.

Think of what practical applications use or explore gravity BUT also is a bit more than a technical theory.


Gliding Planes?
Parachuting?
Magic Wizards that maintain gravity?
Spaceship gravity slingshot systems around planets?

THESE are the kinds of "applications of gravity" that you could make a game from, "Gravity" itself is not a game

Best of luck,

sam
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denis guillemenot
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KISS ! Keep It Simple Stupid

- find a goal: a player wins when... ?

then
- think of a game you like the mechanic (it's better if the winning conditions are the same) and see if it can be adapted to your theme

then try to do a quick prototype and play with it, with friends... listen and take notes

Here are some other thoughts about the subject...

- It could be a "Race to Gravity" game.
- as the theory on gravity is not yet completely known, you could use the super heroes or magical universe.
- Players need to collect/assemble elements to be able to "elevate" some stuff heavier and heavier
- construct a pyramid and each level needs to master the gravity theory more and more !

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James Hutchings
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Some random ideas:

* The four fundamental forces (gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak atomic forces) replace earth, air, fire and water in some kind of fantasy/science fiction world.

* People's metaphorical 'gravity' - their power, status etc - affect their literal gravitational pull.

* Gods squabble over how the laws of the universe will work. Should pi be a nice round number? Should negative numbers exist?
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Terren C
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Ok, just to clear some confusion. I never said that gravity was a theme. Gravity is something that I want to express as a mechanic. For instance, an object of higher gravity may get more things played toward it. Or maybe, the higher gravity a player has the more they can draw/play and vice versa for low gravity.

Some end goals that I'm throwing around include creating a black hole, stopping a black hole. Players may try to be the first to create one, but its not over then, the other players need to try to stop it from sucking them in.

Maybe wormholes have something to do with it? But this poses a new set of issues, so I probably won't go this direction.

The idea in my head is more or less just a bunch of loose pieces. I was toying around with having two decks of cards. One research and one matter. Maybe you're limited to what matter cards you can play without certain research cards.

I appreciate the positive comments and the overall willingness to help. Thanks for that! You guys are helping me out a lot.
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B D
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First of all, neat thought!

I don't know that it makes much sense to try and create a black hole. Maybe something like an artificial planet or something. Then a player that creates a black hole instead loses the game because they went overboard.

Just throwing out some ideas here:

Maybe there are different classes of artificial planets that players can create (for different purposes). Smaller classes are for mineral-rich planets, medium planets are for habitation, large planets are for something else. After declaring what type of planet you're building, you start adding cards to try to get to the correct amount of gravity to build it. Perhaps your research deck adds technological concepts to the planet to control the weight, while the matter deck adds things you would need for the type of planet - biological matter, atmospheric matter, etc. for a habitable planet

Successfully creating a small one gives X VP, a medium Y and a large one Z. On the other hand, under/overshooting the gravitation results in the planet breaking up into rubble or collapsing into a black hole and the player gets -X/-Y/-Z instead.
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Georg W
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Maybe a deduction game about discovering astronomical objects.

Wikipedia wrote:

Le Verrier was intensely engaged for months in complex calculations to explain small but systematic discrepancies between Uranus's observed orbit and the one predicted from the laws of gravity of Newton. [...] Le Verrier announced his final predicted position for Uranus's unseen perturbing planet publicly to the French Academy on 31 August 1846 [...].

Discovery of Neptune
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Terren C
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bhundawg wrote:
First of all, neat thought!

I don't know that it makes much sense to try and create a black hole. Maybe something like an artificial planet or something. Then a player that creates a black hole instead loses the game because they went overboard.

Just throwing out some ideas here:

Maybe there are different classes of artificial planets that players can create (for different purposes). Smaller classes are for mineral-rich planets, medium planets are for habitation, large planets are for something else. After declaring what type of planet you're building, you start adding cards to try to get to the correct amount of gravity to build it. Perhaps your research deck adds technological concepts to the planet to control the weight, while the matter deck adds things you would need for the type of planet - biological matter, atmospheric matter, etc. for a habitable planet

Successfully creating a small one gives X VP, a medium Y and a large one Z. On the other hand, under/overshooting the gravitation results in the planet breaking up into rubble or collapsing into a black hole and the player gets -X/-Y/-Z instead.


This speaks to me. Instead of mining planets, maybe harvesting energy from stars instead. Blue giants, red giants, white dwarfs, etc. They could all do something different.

Players create stars and satellite planets. The planets are what are used to house the research tech that can actually collect the energy. Smaller stars can only host one planet in a stable manner. Larger stars give more/better energy, can also host more planets. So, lets say, that a player spends time and energy and matter creating a large star and another player creates a satellite planet to skim some of the resource from it.

As you add matter to the star it gets denser and creates more gravity to a point that it may become a black hole. Let's say that the risk involved gets higher and higher, this is where dice can come into play.

The black hole could drain matter/energy from all of the players' stars.

I think I have something to work with here! At least a place to start.

Like I said, I'm going to snowball this one and do it til its done. I want to finally finish a game design. I've got four of five others on the backburner.

I really appreciate the help and enthusiasm of this community. If there are more suggestions I'd love to hear them!
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Levi Mote
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I love the idea of large-scale gravity manipulation; planets, stars, even entire galaxies.

Maybe each player can control gravity on this scale and must use it to build, nurture, protect their system while sending disruptive forces into other players' systems.

You could have Resource Collection / Management with a Press Your Luck Dice Mechanic.

Example:
Yellow Star = 4x H + 2x He
Red Star = 4x He + 2x C
White Dwarf = 4x C + 2x O

Stars can be upgraded from one type to another
Dice can be rolled to make up the difference in what resources you have and what you need, but failure burns the star out completely.

Either way, it is an interesting idea.

**No science was used in these examples**
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Pablo Schulman
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Stalp wrote:
bhundawg wrote:
First of all, neat thought!

I don't know that it makes much sense to try and create a black hole. Maybe something like an artificial planet or something. Then a player that creates a black hole instead loses the game because they went overboard.

Just throwing out some ideas here:

Maybe there are different classes of artificial planets that players can create (for different purposes). Smaller classes are for mineral-rich planets, medium planets are for habitation, large planets are for something else. After declaring what type of planet you're building, you start adding cards to try to get to the correct amount of gravity to build it. Perhaps your research deck adds technological concepts to the planet to control the weight, while the matter deck adds things you would need for the type of planet - biological matter, atmospheric matter, etc. for a habitable planet

Successfully creating a small one gives X VP, a medium Y and a large one Z. On the other hand, under/overshooting the gravitation results in the planet breaking up into rubble or collapsing into a black hole and the player gets -X/-Y/-Z instead.


This speaks to me. Instead of mining planets, maybe harvesting energy from stars instead. Blue giants, red giants, white dwarfs, etc. They could all do something different.

Players create stars and satellite planets. The planets are what are used to house the research tech that can actually collect the energy. Smaller stars can only host one planet in a stable manner. Larger stars give more/better energy, can also host more planets. So, lets say, that a player spends time and energy and matter creating a large star and another player creates a satellite planet to skim some of the resource from it.

As you add matter to the star it gets denser and creates more gravity to a point that it may become a black hole. Let's say that the risk involved gets higher and higher, this is where dice can come into play.

The black hole could drain matter/energy from all of the players' stars.

I think I have something to work with here! At least a place to start.

Like I said, I'm going to snowball this one and do it til its done. I want to finally finish a game design. I've got four of five others on the backburner.

I really appreciate the help and enthusiasm of this community. If there are more suggestions I'd love to hear them!


Wow! I'm digging this! Let me thrown a few ideas to the pot.

Imagine a game about creating and managing an empire which is also an solar system.

This game would be a card game using a tableau building mechanic.

Players would have a sun, which would provide energy for the planets, satellites etc ie this is the amount of "energy to play cards from your hand". to feed the sun, player would have to put cards under the sun, making it denser and the suns would have a mass threshold number, when this number is passed the sun has a risk of bursting and becoming a supernova or a black hole. Either would be bad, like swallowing the first planet on line or destroying all satellites or whatever.

Players have to make a decision between going for the bigger cards and maybe burst, or go steady and slow.

Planets would have gravity as well, and this would represent the number of satellites OR size of satellites OR a combination of both.

That being said, the game would have spatial reasoning as well.

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