Monday, August 11

Rush Job

This week was Newcastle Playtest again on Tuesday, but with guests visiting last weekend, I'd had no time to prepare for it so I went along with Zombology and Vacuum with none of my intended changes made to either. Newcastle Playtest is going from strength to strength, we had seven people, six of whom were regulars and designers and Olly, who's been a few times before as a tester.

To begin with Paul T wanted to try out a few mechanic ideas he'd had that he wanted to test. He'd brought a load of brightly coloured dice and matching Hot Wheels cars, which made it much more fun! We tried a few ideas, and suggested a few of our own, which hopefully will help.

After that, there were five of us, so someone suggested Zombology. I'd not made the changes I wanted to try out, but Graham had a pen and I had 100 cards, so I quickly put the two together and scribbled a small number on the top of each card, allowing me to test the idea that Dan had suggested the previous week. No sooner had we finished that game than Dan arrived, so we played again with six players. We won both games, and in fact in one of the games two players tied on points, needing the Cure as a tie breaker, so reducing the cures to value eight meant the scores were much tighter.

The timing thing seemed to work, there were a few suggestions for how to make it more obvious that all cards with the same effect happened together and that number was there only to break ties. I've had another of my own for clarifying that too.

Afterwards we split up and I finally got play Graham's flower nursery game, which was very interesting, and extremely well crafted considering how few times it has been played.

Over the next few weeks I'm going to struggle to find time to update my games as The Daughter's second birthday is fast approaching and we're having a bunch of family up for a party. The house and garden need a bit of attention so that's taken priority over games design.

In other news, I've 'finished' my Last Plays Windows Phone app, in the sense that it does everything I want it to do now. It need polishing before I could put it in the Store, but essentially it works. Unlike my new phone. I updated it to Windows Phone 8.1 and the camera stopped working. Everything else is fine, but the camera won't work from any app. I've tried rebooting the phone and even a factory reset, but to no avail, so I guess I'm going to have to send it off to the shop :-(

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