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Subject: [PNP] New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus! rss

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Chaddyboy
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After a bunch of testing with our game group and at conventions, I figured I'd open up my new game, Prospectus, to anyone out there that wants to check it out!

Prospectus is a game of mages trying to earn a living by trading in the ever-volatile potion markets. It's a stock market game through and through, but unlike most stock market games, in Prospectus, you can see into the future and cast spells to alter that future more to your liking!

 


The board contains a few pieces of information:

- The top part of the board simply shows the current prices of each potion. Also, above and below the price track are two other pieces of information, the buy limit for each potion and the current dividend for that potion. The lower the potion price, the less the dividend and the more you'll be able to buy each turn. The higher the potion price, the more the dividend and the less you'll be able to buy each turn.

- Beneath the price track are 5 spaces for Potion Futures cards. Essentially, you'll be able to see potion trends 5 turns into the future (with limited reliability, as you'll see!).

- Just above those 5 spaces is a price the High Council is willing to pay for potions, which will combine with High Council demand depicted on the tops of the Potion Future cards. The High Council is a group of very powerful mages that were banned from the trading floor. However, they still of course have a need for potions, so they'll rely on you to sell to them! This presents a great opportunity for you to make some extra cash outside of the typical potion market.

- Off to the bottom left is an area which will track which potions are progressing toward dividends. It also contains a cheat sheet as to the characteristics of each potion. The +/- number shows how much that potion could potentially swing up or down during the course of the game, and the "DIV" number shows how many of the 40 cards in the deck will progress that potion's dividend. So, you can see that black is a very volatile potion that will never pay dividends, whereas red is a fairly stable potion that spits out frequent dividends.

 


Here is an example of a Potion Futures card, which will fill those 5 slots on the board.

These cards show three things:

- As mentioned earlier, the two spaces on the top of the card depict the demands of the High Council. So, in the top most card in this image, the High Council really wants to get their hands on a black potion and a blue potion. Depending on the card's position on the board, they'll pay you anywhere from 16 to 24 per cube.

- The center of the card is where the real action is! This is the projected price movements of each potion. So, on the top card, you would expect black to increase in price by 3, brown by 1, blue by 2, yellow by 1, and you'd expect poor red to decrease by 1.

But wait, you're prediction skills are not 100%! You see, this game uses the cube tower of Wallenstein/Shogun/Amerigo fame!



So, you will toss 3 black cubes, 1 brown, 2 blue, 1 yellow, and 1 red cube into the tower, and price changes depending on what actually comes out! So, if only 1 black cube comes out, it would only increase by 1 on the price track. If three red cubes came out, it would take a hit of three on the pricing track! It appears the mages need a little more practice at seeing into the future...

- The bottom of the card shows which potion will progress toward a dividend, which you will mark by placing a cube of that color into the dividend tracking area of the board. If this is the third cube added for that potion, it triggers a dividend! Everyone reveals their potions of that color and receives cash, cash, CASH!

 


Of course, as mages, you'll want to cast spells to alter the future to your advantage! You'll all be equipped with a hand of spell cards which you can use to mess with things. Be sure to chant the name of the spell out loud for full effect!

Spells will do things such as change the order of the Potion Futures cards, add more cubes or transmute the cubes that go into the tower, trade when it's not your turn, alter dividends, etc. Basically, you can screw with things in order brighten your day and to piss off everyone else.

If this all sounds cool to you, you can play now, assuming you own Wallenstein or Shogun, and don't mind printing some files and cutting some paper! If you head to the BGG listing for Prospectus, you'll find all the files you need to play. The main barrier is going to be whether or not you have access to the components of Wallenstein or Shogun, but if you've got that, you're good to go!

I appreciate any feedback you all might have! The game is definitely past the "this game needs a lot of work" stage, so hopefully you'll have fun while helping me test it out further!
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Scott Nelson
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Re: New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus!
My oldest decided to take my Cube tower apart to see how it worked...it doesn't work anymore after his "inspection". Do you think there could be a way to drop the cubes into a black bag and draw out a random amount e.g. scoop into the bag with a (I can only think of the little scoops for formula) and those are the cubes that "fall out". The scoop would make it a different amount that would fall out. Maybe put a hole big enough to drop out a few before it fills up enough not to fall out.

Anyways, that was what I was thinking to imitate the cube tower from the components I have.
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Chaddyboy
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Re: New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus!
ropearoni4 wrote:
My oldest decided to take my Cube tower apart to see how it worked...it doesn't work anymore after his "inspection". Do you think there could be a way to drop the cubes into a black bag and draw out a random amount...

You could probably make something up that roughly simulates it, at least closely enough to not make the game all that different. It would also affect one of the spell cards, but it would be a minor problem.
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Sturv Tafvherd
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Re: New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus!
ropearoni4 wrote:
My oldest decided to take my Cube tower apart to see how it worked...it doesn't work anymore after his "inspection". Do you think there could be a way to drop the cubes into a black bag and draw out a random amount e.g. scoop into the bag with a (I can only think of the little scoops for formula) and those are the cubes that "fall out". The scoop would make it a different amount that would fall out. Maybe put a hole big enough to drop out a few before it fills up enough not to fall out.

Anyways, that was what I was thinking to imitate the cube tower from the components I have.


Possible simple solution: take a pen, and put a dot or a slash on half of the cube faces. So, 3 faces of each cube is marked, the other 3 faces are not marked. Then, roll the cubes. Cubes that end up with an unmarked top face are the ones that "fall out" or "not swallowed by the tower"

(I don't know the actual probability of the tower swallowing a cube)

edit: upon further reading, it seems the tower both swallows and may spit back out what it swallowed in an earlier turn. So my idea is not going to reflect that
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Steve S
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Re: New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus!
It sounds interesting, but yeah the requirement to own one of these towers is going to be heavily limiting in who can try it out. I wonder if something similar (maybe with not as many "floors") could be designed to cut out of cardstock or something....
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Chaddyboy
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Re: New Game for Print and Play - Prospectus!
Shadoglare wrote:
It sounds interesting, but yeah the requirement to own one of these towers is going to be heavily limiting in who can try it out. I wonder if something similar (maybe with not as many "floors") could be designed to cut out of cardstock or something....

Yeah, sorry it's limiting! I was hoping that with 10,000 copies of Wally/Shogun owned on BGG, most people would at least know someone they could borrow from.
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Manuel Ingeland
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Doesn't it work with any dice tower?
 
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magneheeli wrote:
Doesn't it work with any dice tower?


No. You need to have one of he aforementioned towers as they have flat shelves inside where cubes can get caught up. Causes uncertainty every time you toss cubes down the tower in what exactly comes out...
 
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Using the tower component is genius. I always thought a game that uses only components from top 50 games would be a great idea (I'm sure it's been done before in the game design compos); as you say, so what if only 10,000 folk can access the tower - even if you shift 100 that'll be 50 more folk enjoying your design than most home-cooked games.
 
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willsargent wrote:
Using the tower component is genius. I always thought a game that uses only components from top 50 games would be a great idea (I'm sure it's been done before in the game design compos); as you say, so what if only 10,000 folk can access the tower - even if you shift 100 that'll be 50 more folk enjoying your design than most home-cooked games.

Yeah, it's a component I don't understand why more games don't use. To me, it's one of the most ingenious game mechanisms out there!
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chaddyboy_2000 wrote:
willsargent wrote:
Using the tower component is genius. I always thought a game that uses only components from top 50 games would be a great idea (I'm sure it's been done before in the game design compos); as you say, so what if only 10,000 folk can access the tower - even if you shift 100 that'll be 50 more folk enjoying your design than most home-cooked games.

Yeah, it's a component I don't understand why more games don't use. To me, it's one of the most ingenious game mechanisms out there!


Cost to the game might go up, or maybe a patent on it?
 
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I was just thinking, I've never used one of these towers so I don't know what the probability of cubes being caught or however you want to think of it... but I was wondering if this could be done with something like a die roll - for example for each color cube use half of a d6 rounded down or something like that....
 
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chaddyboy_2000 wrote:
willsargent wrote:
Using the tower component is genius. I always thought a game that uses only components from top 50 games would be a great idea (I'm sure it's been done before in the game design compos); as you say, so what if only 10,000 folk can access the tower - even if you shift 100 that'll be 50 more folk enjoying your design than most home-cooked games.

Yeah, it's a component I don't understand why more games don't use. To me, it's one of the most ingenious game mechanisms out there!


I love that you've designed a game that utilizes it! (And I'm looking forward to seeing how Feld puts it to use in Amerigo.)
 
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Shadoglare wrote:
I was just thinking, I've never used one of these towers so I don't know what the probability of cubes being caught or however you want to think of it... but I was wondering if this could be done with something like a die roll - for example for each color cube use half of a d6 rounded down or something like that....

No, dice don't really replicate it. Basically, the tower acts as dice that will always very nearly even out over the course of a game.

Some turns, you might throw 3 brown cubes in, but only 1 will come out. However, those 2 brown are still in the tower, and will sometimes get knocked out by future drops. So, the idea is that it adds some unexpectedness, but without the possibility of long term dice wonkiness since a shortage on one turn will generally mean a surplus on the next turn.

Of course, this is interesting in a stock game. If brown is looking like it will go up 3 one turn, and only down 1 on the next, you might invest in it since it looks like you'll have a gain of 2 on brown. But, if only 1 of 3 cubes comes out when brown goes up, now you have to worry about those all coming out during the turn when it goes down, and you may end up losing money on the investment when it looked like a sure thing! It's a great way to add the unpredictability of a market.
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You could simply simulate them with dice, and each time a die has a negative result you keep them and you re-roll it for the next turn...

Problem is that instead of having a dice tower, users would need a lot of dice in different colors....
 
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Sounds like a fun game, but I neither own Wallenstein nor plan on ever getting it nor know anyone that wants it. While this tower sounds really cool, it's incredibly limiting. Since all it is is a randomizer, why not just do this:

Cubes go in a bag with all previous cubes from the game.
Roll a d8 or d10 (whatever denomination best fits the range you want), and then pull that many cubes out. You'd still have cubes from previous turns, and you'd have the possibility of 1-Whatever. If you want 0 to be a possibility, make each roll d10-1.

 
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