NE1 Games

Independent Games That Anyone Can Enjoy

Gen Con 50! + A Prototype Update

I had a blast at Gen Con 50! This was my first Gen Con and it was simply amazing. I want to write up some thoughts on the various games I played but since I played 23 individual titles and participated in one escape room I may spread that out in posts to come.  Until then here's some T-Rexs, Pikachu and a storm trooper in tails...


Despite having a sick Toddler the game I talked about pitching last time has been moving right along. You can now properly deduce in my social deduction game, which seems... important. At least, the mechanisms provide a way to do so. 

Game Design Rule 313: Until a player actually does a thing while playing your game it's not actually in the game.

So it's off to playtesting. Having lived in the Roanoke area for... 40 days now... getting a playtesting group together is still on the to do list. Hopefully I can fall back on some old friends in other places.

I've added light movement and area control elements to the social deduction and I'm using both a vote and a Battlestar style card challenge, which allows players some real decision points. I think this is pushing the game into middle weight/length (an unusual place for social deduction) but I feel like the game wants a little grit for the legacy aspects to grab on to. I'm going to let it sprawl a bit and then try to push it down to under an hour. We'll see how that goes.

I've got more to say about working with the legacy aspects but this blog post is long enough and I've got to actually get some work done. :P

Cheers,  NE

Why Not To Pitch A Game Too Early

So day 0 of Gen Con is in the books. Part of mine was filled with general logistics (Hotel check in, Gen Con tickets, prep for tomorrow) while the rest focused on pitching a clearly-not-ready legacy game...


See all that pen marks on the cards? Yeah, that's not a good sign. I fell prey to the temptation to be Johnny-on-the-spot, the guy with the exact right idea at exact the right time. I'll try and take some time next week to write about the process at length but the short lesson is, no matter how tempting the circumstances, don't go into a meeting unless your current game rules have...

A. ...been playtested to get the kinks out

B. ...are stable long enough for you to teach the game coherently.

Despite that the pitch could have gone worse. They got to see enough working bits to feel there was a game in there (somewhere) and they told me they're open to a second pitch. The unfortunate truth is that I didn't have that game yet and we all knew it.

All of this leads to the importance of moving bg forward not back in this industry. Making s pitch too early was an easy mistake to make, but it's 12:43 now, so that was yesterday. In front of me is the fun part, the part where I get to slow down, nail the mechanics, vet the rules, and give them a follow up pitch they can't resist. 

Envelopes Everywhere

One of the projects I'm working on is a legacy game, which is making my table look like the local post office...


 Designing a legacy game is surprisingly hard! My mind gets definite gear grind when working on long chains of linked events. It's akin to working with decision trees but with the added mess of physical components.


 Admittedly, I've compounded the difficulty by forgoing the rule book and building the story and the rule set as the players play, making it more like a video game tutorial. At least this is a lightweight social game, I can't imagine trying to do this with a game like Seafall.

Working hard?

Putting together a quick prototype for a horror social deduction game. Hoping to get this and my worker persuasion game set in Pompeii in future updates ready for playtesting by Gen Con next week!