Last night I got to spend some time on construction as The Wife was out, I made another copy and started yet another. I'm slowly getting through my pre-orders. I'm hoping to get four done this week before my parents arrive for the weekend. Mum and Dad are going to take a couple of copies back to Bristol with them, and I'm hoping to finally deliver a couple of copies to friends.
I thought I'd update you on the progress of my second game Codename: Jorvik. It's going to be a quick and simple 2-player card game. I'm aiming for a nicely-themed filler. A few weeks ago I came up with a first prototype copy with the cards made from bits of paper with pencil squiggles on. It was designed to be played against myself as a tool to sort out the initial balance. I used it in a couple of games against The Wife, and the paper cards were blatantly insufficient. They were see-through, so you could see which card your opponent was going to draw next. Also, the squiggles weren't expressive enough for someone who didn't design the game to understand.
So I've made a second prototype. This one features cards made from actual card, with a slightly more expressive squiggle and some additional information. The cards feature no artwork yet and the backs are plain, but it's a start. Here's a photo of a few of the new cards:
I've also made a few changes. I've changed the distribution of the cards to make the game flow more, and I've added a few new card types. Initially, I had some very powerful cards, which I thought were too powerful. As there were only a couple of them in the game, it's very possible for them both to end up in one player's hand. That leads to that player almost certainly winning. That's obviously unacceptable. So what could I do to solve the problem? Here's some options:
- I could remove the powerful cards
- I could power down the powerful cards
- I could add more powerful cards
As unlikely as the last option sounds, it reduces the chance that one player will get them all. In the end I chose options two and three, I reduced the powerful cards, and I added some more even less powerful cards. I'll play like this a few times and see how it's working out.
Since the last few games I've also had some more ideas. When developing Border Reivers I started with a very complex idea and over a couple of years I simplified things until I ended up with a streamlined game. With Jorvik, I started with a very simple game, and I'm finding it too simple. The game needs a bit more to it. So I'm going to be trying out some more ideas to give it a bit more depth. I'll have to be careful though - I don't want to over-complicate it.