Monday, September 22, 2008

Noblemen the card game

I really like my current game called Noblemen. It’s a game about physically building your estate with different flavored land tiles and buildings like palaces, churches, castles, and follies. Its fun, in my opinion, because you can race each other under a slightly unpredictable clock to finish your goals.

What the game doesn’t do is feel like you are plotting and scheming to manipulate the powers of the day. Much of that is abstracted out. You are only trying to outmaneuver them to win the various physical races.

I have always known this and I have tried to mask the absence of this scheming with the scandal cards in the game. The Scandal cards do that some, but not enough. Others have echoed this too.

From all this I have thought about what would I have to do to change the game. The short answer is I cannot add something to the game to do this for several reasons. The biggest reason is it would change the game too much.

It did get me thinking though about a new game that would have this goal from the start.

I think the game would be a card game at its heart. Each player would be assigned the roll of a fictional yet similar to one from history noble. One player would be the current monarch. When the game ends the current monarch will be the winner.

From the beginning there are several schemes or plots in play that players can get behind or take over.

It would take most of the game for the plots to resolve and at some point the players would not be able to hold them back.

Plots would start resolving or getting canceled and go away resulting in potential shift in powers. Some people may be eliminated from being caught committing high treason or from being murdered.

Also at all times there is a current chain of order of who would be next on the thrown after the current monarch. Some plots would involve changing this. I think needs to have:

  1. elimination
  2. Hidden influence
  3. trading
  4. negotiating
That’s all for now.

Sunday, March 9, 2008


Cubed is the new name for a game I used to call "Unstackable"

This game started life as a mini-game in my GDS entry Duke of the hill on the BGDW site.
By Dwight Sullivan

2 players
12 minutes

Parts –
1 cloth bag
64 1” colored cubes; 3 yellow, 16 red, and 45 Black

Game Play –
The game is in two parts. Players first create a 4x4x4 cube by stacking up the colored cubs. Then they take turns tying to score points by unshackling them yet leaving no scoring opportunities for their opponent.

Set-up –
Pour the cubes out where both players can reach them and place the bag flat between the players.

Choose someone to go first.

First Stage: STACKING -
Players take turns stacking the cubes until they have a 4x4x4 larger cube.
They choose one of the 3 colors. If they choose black they can place 3 cubes, if they choose red they can place 2, if they choose yellow they can only choose one.
There are only two rules while stacking:
1 – You have to place your cubes squarely next to another cube or on top of another cube.
2 – You can never place a cube such that the side you are building will be larger than 4 wide, 4 deep, or 4 tall.

If you have only black cubes remaining you no longer need to take turns. Simply add all the remaining cubes to fill in the rest of the holes.

When you are done you will have this:

The last player to player to stack a red cube will go second in the next stage.

Second Stage: UNSTACKING –
Taking turns, players will remove two blocks per turn. They will remove the two blocks one at a time placing the first block each turn into one pile near them and the second into a second pile.

The only rule for removing a block is: The block has to be exposed on at least 3 sides before it can be removed. Meaning you can not remove a that is between other blocks.

Scoring –
Scoring is based on which pile the cubes are in.

First pile:
Yellow 5 points
Red 3 points
Black 0 points

Second pile:
Yellow 0 points
Red 0 points
Black 1 point

In the picture above the first pile scores 3 points and the second pile will score 1 point for a total of 4 points.

Each player will get 16 turns. When the last cube is drawn the player with the most points wins.

Strategy –
The cube is built on the bag so you can easily rotate it to see all sides before choosing which you will remove.

Saturday, March 1, 2008


Welcome the world of Patrollers. The exciting tabletop miniatures battle game for all ages. Play with one patroller or up to five of your favorites but collect them all!

For 2 players 8 to 88 years old

Objective: To be the last person with a Patroller still in play.

With each 5” tall Patroller:
You will get one Action eight-sided die. Each one has 4 red numbers, 1 yellow number and 3 blue numbers that are custom to match his skills. The Red numbers help with attacking, the blue numbers help with defense, and the yellow number can be used for either.

Each Patroller comes with a dog-tag:


At the start of each game you will dial-up the abilities of each of your Patrollers to match your playing style or your strategy for the game. The back side is used after the Patroller has bee
n wounded.


Each Patroller gets one order-marker for keeping track of which of your Patrollers have moved so far in a round.

You also get 1 two inch piece of twine with knots on each end. This is used to measure distances for attacking or moving. The knots help you hold the twine tight.

You also get two Death Tokens. These are used in the Advanced Rules explained below.

Last you get one quick-reference sheet for the Patroller you purchased.


Getting started
Before you begin you and your opponent will decide how many Patrollers you want to play with from one to five. Then out of all the patrollers you own select that many to be your team for this battle.

Next you will need a flat clear area to play like a kitchen table. The area should be about 2 feet deep by 3 feet wide. Each player should sit on opposite sides of the playing area.

Choose one player to go first. Taking turns, starting with the first player, each player places one patroller within 4 inches of their edge of the playing area. Use the 2 inch twine.

Once all Patrollers are placed you will then dial each dog tag to the stats you desire and place the dog-tags front side up in front of you. You are now ready to play.

The game is played in rounds. Each round has one turn for each player for each patroller they have left.

1 - Players roll initiative. Each player chooses one of their die and rolls it. For imitative rolls you ignore the color. High roll goes first.
2 - Players take turns with each of their Patrollers until all have taken a turn. They may choose the order they play their Patrollers.
3 - When on his turn a player has no more Patrollers to play the round is over. Remove all turn markers and start a new round.

Example –
Mark has 3 Patrollers remaining in play 2 with order-markers; Jill has only 2 Patrollers and she has already taken a turn with both of them. It is now her turn and since she has no more Patrollers the round is over. Both will remove their oder-markers and start a new round.

On your turn you must choose one of your Patrollers that do not have an order-marker. Place an order-marker on the dog-tag then you may take two actions whit it:
1 - Your first action is always to move.
2 - Your second action can be to move or attack.

To move you first refer to the dog-tag. The number next to “MOVE:” is the amount of 2 inch lengths of twine you can move your Patroller. You do not have to move the full amount.

Example – to move 3 you hold the twine taunt with one end next to your Patroller the other end in the direction you want to move. Then hold that end in place while you move the other end in the direction you want to move. Do this a second time to complete the move.

If you move so that your Patroller is touching another Patroller this is called Head-to-Head.

To attack a patroller you have to be within range. The furthest Patroller you can attack is indicated by the number next to “RANGE” on your dog-tag. This number is the amount of 2 inch lengths of twine.

If the Patroller is in range announce your intentions to your opponent. You and your opponent will take the appropriate die and roll them. If the attacker rolls any red or yellow number it counts. If the defender rolls any blue or yellow number it counts. Otherwise consider the die roll a zero. Add to your die roll the current values from your dog-tag. Then compare your number with your opponents.

If the defender ties or better then the defender wins and nothing happens.

Otherwise the attack succeeds and the player that owns the attacked Patroller flips his dog-tag over to the near death side. This Patroller is now one wound from dying and may not be as strong as he was before in most of his abilities.

If the Patroller was already on the near death side has then taken its fatal wound and is out of play. Take the Patroller and lay it on its side where it died. It will be a movement obstacle for the rest of the battle.

Patrollers that have died are laid on their side where they died by the owner. These are now obstacles to movement for the rest of the battle.

Example – Mark attacks Jill’s SARGE with his Red Dragon. He Rolls a red 1 and she rolls a red 3 which counts as zero. He adds his attack value from his dog tag and has a total of 4. She adds her Defense and has a total of 3. Mark wins the attack and Jill flips her SARGE’s dog-tag to the near death side.


The advanced game adds more strategy by adding more abilities and synergies.

There are three new actions you gain with each Patroller Special, Leader, and Death.

Class Action - Each Patroller has a class and therefore Class actions. The player’s class is shown in the top right of the dog-tag next to the name. There are 7 types of classes:
· Leader – Add +1 attack to all grunts you control
· Grunt – NONE
· Mercenary – Add +1 attack for each Specialist you control
· Ninja – Can move before attacking on their turn
· Bizarre – +1 attack if you make the sound of the attack as you do it
· Cyborg – +1 defense for each Mercenary your opponent controls · Specialist – Add +1 defense for each Mercenary you control

Special Action – Each Patroller has one special action. Some Patrollers will lose their special action on their near death side of their dog-tag. All special actions are explained on the quick-reference sheet. Also Special actions are explained in the Patrollers Glossary below.

Death Action – Death actions occur when a Patroller dies. To know what action will take place requires extra Set-Up in addition to the basic set-up. Before the basic set-up each player will remove all the contents of each of their Patrollers and secretly choose one death token of any they own to place inside and then close it up. Then do the Basic set-up above.

Death Tokens

Each Death token has a point value. Players must choose ahead of time a maximum amount of points of death tokens to play.

Death tokens stay inside the head of the Patroller until he is killed. Then remove the token from the head and show it to your opponent. It will take effect immediately as a death action. Replace the top of the head and replace the Patroller where he died laying it on its side.

NOTE - If a Class, Special, or Death Action conflicts with any rule the Class, Special, or Death Action overrides the basic rule.

There are three types of Death Tokens; Instants, Equipment, and Battle Wide:
· Instant Death Tokens – These actions happen once and the token is then discarded.
· Equipment Death Tokens – These represent equipment that is now owned by another of your Patrollers. Choose any Patroller you have in play and place the Death Token next to his dog-tag.
· Battle Wide Tokens – These tokens are placed in view of both players and may have an effect on some or all of the remaining Patrollers.

Here are some examples of death tokens:

Instants - These events used instantly and then are discarded:
· Self Destruct – Roll an attack against all other units within attack range. All affected then have to roll defense separately.
· Med-Pack – Flip back one dog tag to the starting side if there are any.
· Elixir of Mutation – Change the Dog Tag Dial on any remaining unit.
· Resurrection – Stand this unit back up its still in the game.

Equipment - These events are attached to a remaining unit if you have one:

· Colt 45 – Add 1 to the units attack for the rest of the game.
· Kevlar Vest - Add 1 to the units defense for the rest of the game.
· MED PACK – stops the next wound on this unit. Discard afterward.
· Combat boots of Speed – Double the move value.
· Laser scope – Double the attack range.
· Grenade launcher – The next attack this unit does causes two wounds if successful otherwise zero. Discard after next attack either way.
· Temporal Nugget – Take two full turns with this unit. Discard after use.

Battle Wide - These events sit on your side and affect the whole game:
· Honor – All Ninjas remaining in play add 2 while attacking.
· Loyalty – All Mercenaries remaining in play add 1 attack and 1 defense.
· Duty – All Grunts remaining in play add 2 while defending.

Patrollers Glossary -
Each Patroller has a name, class, Attack, Defense, Move, Range, and special actions. The abilities that can be dialed have two sets of values. The first is the front of the dog-tag and the second is when that Patroller in near death.

Mad Dog
Class Mercenary
Attack 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Defense 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Move 1 to 3 / 0 to 2
Range 2 to 3 / 2 to 3

Berserker Attack –
Can take two turns in a row but then has to skip the next turn.

Doctor Johnson
Class Specialist
Attack 0 to 1 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 5 / 3 to 4
Move 2 to 4 / 1 to 2
Range 0 to 1 / 0 to 1

Meatball Surgery –
Instead moving or attacking you may flip any dog-tag back over from the near death side only if the unit is within attack range.

Blue Spider
Class Ninja
Attack 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 3 to 3 / 2 to 3
Range 0 to 0 / 0 to 0

Tiger Claw Grip – Any unit head-to-head with Blue Spider cannot move or attack if Blue Spider didn’t move or attack this turn.

Red Dragon
Class Ninja
Attack 3 to 5 / 1 to 1
Defense 3 to 5 / 2 to 4
Move 3 to 3 / 2 to 3
Range 0 to 0 / 0 to 0

Dragon Stance –
If the Red Dragon didn’t attack in his last turn he cannot be attacked. (NEED TO reword so he can be attacked every other turn at best.)

Ice Man
Class Grunt
Attack 4 to 7 / 0 to 2
Defense 0 to 3 / 0 to 2
Move 3 to 3 / 2 to 2
Range 2 to 4 / 0 to 1

Strafing – Instead of moving may attack twice.

Class Leader
Attack 2 to 4 / 2 to 4
Defense 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Move 1 to 3 / 1 to 1
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

Issue Orders –
You may take a turn with any grunt you control instead of Sarge.

Depth Charge
Class Grunt
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 2 to 3 / 1 to 2
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

Explosives Deployment – Before moving all explosives in play are activated. Instead of attacking Depth Charge can leave an explosive charge anywhere within attack range.

Plague Bringer
Class Specialist
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 1 to 3 / 1 to 1
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

Gas Attack – Instead of attacking may add a gas marker to any a dog-tag of any unit in attack range. (Units with gas markers have to remove the marker instead of taking a turn.)

Captain Dwayne
Class Specialist
Attack 3 to 6 / 4 to 7
Defense 1 to 4 / 0 to 3
Move 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Range 2 to 4 / 2 to 4

Ambition Extreme – Player may re-roll any attack die once per a Captain Dwayne attack.

Mad Doctor
Class Bizarre
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 3 to 5 / 2 to 4
Move 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

“Experimental” Surgery – Instead of attacking Mad Doctor can change any Dog-tag dial of any figure he is head-to-head with.

Sewer Rat
Class Grunt
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Range 1 to 2 / 0 to 1

Back of hand –
Sewer Rat knows the terrain and if he doesn’t attack may move three times.

Class Grunt
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Range 1 to 2 / 0 to 1

Secret Deployment – Riptide is not deployed as normal. After the first turn, place Riptide anywhere in the playing area. He cannot be placed within attack range.

Class Mercenary
Attack 2 to 4 / 1 to 3
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 2 to 3 / 1 to 2
Range 2 to 3 / 1 to 2

Gatling Gun – Instead of attacking can choose one Patroller to attack. Gatling Gun also attacks all other Patrollers within range 1 of the choosen Patroller.If you use Gatling Gun you may not use your dialed attack. Always add 1 to the die rolled.

Class Bizarre
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

Psychic blast –
Instead of attacking Patches may do a Psychic blast. If he does he must move all figures within attack range away from him one move length.

Eight Bit
Class Cyborg
Attack 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Defense 4 to 6 / 3 to 5
Move 1 to 3 / 0 to 1
Range 1 to 3 / 0 to 1

Calculated Assault – If Eight Bit doesn’t attack this turn you may add 3 to your Initiative roll next turn.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Sunday! Sunday! Sunday!

The summer is heating up and we have another great line up of Amateur SMASH-UP-DERBY. So get your car ready and register TODAY!

3 to 5 players
90 Minutes

Object –
Earn the most victory points repairing cars during the 12 weeks of summer at the Amateur SMASH-UP-DERBY.

Parts –
· Victory point track board and point markers for 5 players. This shows which week the players are in, what day of the week, and how many Victory Points they currently have. It also shows them how much cash they will get from their own smash up derby race winnings.

· Deck of Customer cards. These are jobs that are bid on and completed by the players to earn money and Victory points. The top money value is the minimum that job will pay. The middle value is default value. The 3rd value is maximum.

· Deck of Master Mechanic cards. These give your shop extra capacity or other features.
· Money.
· Dozens of small brown wooden cubes.
These represent boxes of car repair parts.
· 20 auto repair-shop boards. These show the players current repair jobs and how soon they will be done. Up to 4 for each player.

Set Up –
· Give each player 1 auto repair-shop board.
· Put the Victory point board in the middle.
· Put one point marker for each player on the 0 of week 1.
· Give each player some money.
· Put the week marker on Monday.
· Give each player some boxes of parts.
· Deal 5 customer cards to each player.

The game is played in 6 phases per week:

Monday –
Each player draws up to 5 cards.
Move the week marker to Tuesday.

Tuesday –
· Players can buy Parts.
· Players can hire Master Mechanics. You can only have one per shop. Put it next to one of your shops.
· Players can buy new shops.
Move the week marker to Wednesday.

Wednesday –
Each player in turn plays one customer card from their hand.
Move the week marker to Thursday.

Thursday –
· Players can buy Parts.
· Players can hire Master Mechanics. You can only have one per shop. Put it next to one of your shops.
· Players can buy new shops.
Move the week marker to Friday.

Friday –
Each player in turn plays one customer card from their hand.
Move the week marker to Saturday & Sunday.

Saturday & Sunday – Race days for the players.
Move the victory point marker of each player to the next week paying them from the bank for their racing winnings.
Move the week marker back to Monday.

After the 12th week The player with the highest score wins.

Playing customer cards:
The player playing a customer card chooses one from their hand and lays it where all can see it.

All other players bid from the range of monies on the card. The winner of the bid puts the card on an open labor slot in one of his shops. It has to be a labor slot that is equal or higher than the labor on the card.

Then money bid is put on the card from the bank.

If no one bids then the player that played can have it for the default value.

All players that did not win can move all their cards one position to the right.

Players collect any money from cards that falls off the right side. They also can move their victory point marker to the right one for each unless they are at the end of the week.

NOTE – The above is more of a treatment than a full set of rules. Many of the specifics are missing on purpose.