What do prototypes prototype?

1. What mechanics are fun?

Fun is the essence of play. We tested a lot of different mechanics on paper to see how we can increase fellowship (interactions) and challenge. We are doing paper prototypes and will slowly modify the game with new rules. There are 3 mechanics that could potentially be very interactive. First is the “passing” mechanic. The passer sends a card face up to another player. This mechanic is fun because it forces people to pay attention, or they will lose out on the information. It also slightly changes the hand of the receiver and the strategy to take them down.¬† The second mechanic is stealing. Players can use a counter item to steal cards from another player’s hands. If successful, they can steal these cards, add points to the player. The last fun mechanic is the ability to “counterattack.” The best part is when the attacker fails and gives away information about their hand (need to reveal what you’re attacking with).

3. How to motivate players to take “fun” actions?

Even though the “passing” mechanic is fun for the observers, there is no strong incentive to pass. Since the game is collection-based, it is more beneficial to hold on to as many cards as possible, until the player reaches capacity. As a result, most players only pass cards once they get to the cap. We need to think of new mechanics and/or incentives for this action. It is one of the most fun and game-changing mechanics, but we need to figure out way to make it easier for players to take this action. One way to incentivize passing is to reward players with a new card (draw from center) if they pass.

2. Are all players engaged even when it’s not their turn?

In a turn based game, players can zone out if it’s not their turn. As a result, this makes the game less dynamic and social. Sometimes, players are also demotivated from playing if they feel like they will lose and have no comeback mechanism. We are adding in “attack” and “pass” mechanics to keep all players engaged throughout the game. There is an attack phase at the end of every turn where at most 1 player can attack another player. Players need to buzz if they want to attack. Secondly, players can pass 1 card to anyone during their turn. The card is revealed so there is an incentive for everyone to pay attentions so they get information on others’ hand.

About the author

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.