Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Games We Tried at Prototype Con 2016

The creativity at Prototype Con was amazing! Matt and Heidi thoroughly enjoyed play testing a multitude of games, some nearly finished, some midway through development, and at least one dreamed up the night before and scribbled onto bits of cardboard (samples from The Game Crafter) in the morning! Here is a selection of the games we tried. We hope that many of them will come to market and be available to you soon.

PIRATE ATTACK, designed by Rudy Currier. 2-10 players, 30-120 minutes.
Players play pirate ships, then upgrade their ships and hurt other players ships with cards. When an attack card comes up players attack each other. Witch Doctors, Fortune Tellers, Magic Shop, and Tavern Cards can all be bought to help players build their ships up and to destroy their enemies.
Here's a video review I found of Pirate Attack on Just Got Played.

HONEY WARS, designed by Andrew Smith, 2-4 players, 30-45 minutes.
It’s a beautiful spring day, the flowers are in bloom, and there’s an epic battle waging beneath the petals. Honey Wars is a card and dice game with a strong, "Take That" mechanic. You and your fellow players control hives of bees, working to build your army while blocking your opponent’ efforts to do the same. Use cards to attack your opponents, defend your hives, harvest honey, and WIN THE WAR!
Honey Wars has a Kickstarter campaign going live on March 1, 2016. 

VEGETABLE GARDEN. Kelly Adams was not on the official schedule, but we loved her newly invented game, Vegetable Garden. Different veggie cards (carrots, cabbage, tomatoes, and peppers) let you rearrange the cards with different mechanics, allowing you to strategize maximizing your score. Simple but clever, and really fun! And the most amazing part is that she dreamed the game overnight and created it that very morning.

TIME TROTTERS, designed by John Carter, 2-5 players, 45-60 minutes.
A card game that involves strategy and collecting themed around time travel. You play a handful of time tourists that kicking dinosaurs and causing paradoxes left and right.

HIGH NOON: DEATH COMES TO TOWN DEALING DEADLY BULLETS OF DEATH, designed by Rob Yates, 2 players, 20-30 minutes.
Decidedly delightful dueling deckbuilder. Using the buildings and townsfolk, the daring desperadoes duel to the death on the main street of Darrenger with an array weapons and tactics. Players can use members of their posse to attack their opponent or send them out to work one of the many locations in the town to grant bonuses or increase their wealth.

BARTERVILLE, designed by John Carter, 2-4 players, 45-90 minutes.
Set in a post-apocalyptic setting. Barterville is a mix of a worker placement and city building game You play a gang leader trying to garner the respect necessary to run Barterville. You do this by sending your minions to gather enough resources to build landmarks in your name. However, the Wasteland is a dangerous place rife with Radiation, Raiders, and Rust Storms.

IT'S OVER, designed by Simon MacDonald, 1-6 players, 45-90 minutes.
In “It’s Over” you and your friends will be playing the surviving members of Lake Prince. You will have a certain five turns to accrue and play Resources to permit your Survivor to survive the current Doomsday. Once you survive the Doomsday, it’s over. No. Wait. No, it isn’t over. Sorry about that. After you survive a Doomsday, the new day dawns and another Doomsday appears. All your accrued Resources have been used up by the previous Doomsday, and you must repeat the cycle. Each new Doomsday applies different effects and damages and reduces the teams overall Hope, so it will help to be versatile and adaptive in order to play. The game is over when all of the Hope has been reduced to zero, when all of the Survivors die, or when your team has failed or met a condition based by the Challenge.
It's Over on Facebook

PANORAMIC was not on the official schedule, but we enjoyed trying it out. It was a picture-building game, similar to the sub-game in Tokaido.

HAUNTED, designed by Jim Moss, for 2-5 players, was not on the official schedule, but we like it enough to buy a copy of this finished game. The cards create a multistory haunted house; you turn them over to search for treasures. Collect four treasures to win the game. Game play included fun mechanisms like a flashlight that lets you peek at two cards at once, and a hidden staircase to let you skip ahead to an upper floor.

TAXI, designed by Paul Weintraub, was not on the official schedule, but we gave it a test drive before getting in our own vehicle to drive home. We played the easy level on the city streets of Baltimore (the harder New York level includes one way streets). We had to pick up passengers and get them to their destinations quickly before they got annoyed and reduced our tips or jumped out of the cab to walk instead.

DESIGN PANEL: Besides all the actual gaming, we attended the Designer Panel with Tom Vasel, Robert Burke, Richard Borg, Zev Shlasinger, Richard Launius, and Steve Avery, to hear words of wisdom about publishing games.

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