BGG.con Bound!

I’ve been busy preparing for BGG.con that I haven’t had any time to update the blog!  BGG.con, for those not in the know is the Boardgamegeek’s annual convention of board gamery!  Boardgamegeek, for those not in the know is the main website for all things board games.

For the last 5 days, my game design partner, Sen was in town!  We worked straight through and saw nary a sunbeam – and that’s not just because I live in Vancouver.  We tweaked a few of our games in preparation for our first playtest night on Thursday night.  We had a couple of the Game Artisans of Canada come over to help us playtest our games.

We played RuneMasters, which Z-Man Games has expressed interest in seeing (how did they express interest in this you ask?  I’ll go into details about how to contact publishers in an upcoming post!).  It’s still in Alpha – possibly late-Alpha phase of game development, which means that we don’t necessarily know all the rules yet but we have some mechanics down and a prototype made (actually the 5th version printed already!).  They helped us come up with a new system for how to do the battles that makes it more interesting to play.

We played Akrotiri and it was fun, but not very involving.  We were trying a new idea for how to find Atlantis – and while everyone liked it, the game lacked some tension.  Some brainstorming led us to some minor tweaks on how to fix it.

We also played a couple rounds of But Wait There’s More – our new party game that we’re really excited about – and we came up with the best way to do the scoring – which was the only thing we were struggling with.

Then Sen and I worked all day Friday and Saturday, tweaking these games in preparation for our next playtest night on Saturday night.  We had 2 of our favourite playtesters come over and we played these games all over again.

First up was Lost for Words – our word making game that word game fans really love.  We were just struggling with the scoring (which in this game is what motivates your entire turn) – and we came up with some great ideas.  Since then we’ve tweaked it and tried it again and it works perfectly!

Akrotiri – what can I say buy Wow!  This was the best this game has ever been.  It was the perfect balance of tension and interaction.  Players were stealing resources from each other, taking islands before others and paying each other for their map cards.  We are extremely excited about this game.

RuneMasters worked a lot better but one of our playtesters came up with a great idea – which means another printing of the prototype – but it was worth it!  We played it again the next day and it was great.  Simpler but still interesting and unique.  It’s still in Beta stage but it’s at least ready to show publishers as long as they know it’s in that stage.

But Wait There’s More – this is the funniest game we’ve ever made.  I love this game.  I can’t wait to show some publishers.

So overall – a great 5 days with Sen!  I’m heading out tomorrow to Dallas for the convention – and to hold in my hands my first board game ever published – Train of Thought!  I’ll try to update the blog with some thoughts throughout the con so keep checking back.  Wish me luck! 🙂

-Jay Cormier

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