Posts by jeff

Hull Check Math

Posted by on Sep 30, 2016 in Uncategorized | 3 comments

I’ve always been good with math.  This has been a great problem for me because I ended up not learning math.  I can add numbers in my head and do well on multiple choice tests so I didn’t really need to learn how to do higher math.  I could picture it in my head and know that the answer wasn’t A or B and C just didn’t make sense. Anyhow, I ended up not learning calculus and regret it to this day so when I have to do something that requires math for a game, I go through agony. It turns out game design isn’t multiple choice.  I end up hunting and pecking and finding something that works until I can figure out something better. The original Battlestations hull check chart was just such an animal and it has worked unchanged for 15 years.  I liked it.  I realized, however that I wanted it to ramp up to the interesting zone earlier and that the window at the top end was too short.  I just started playing around with some arithmetic progressions and got the chart below. Your damage is on the left (I love summations) with the hull check required on the right.  Add your ship size to your hull checks.  This makes the new size 3 ship (what had been size 5) roughly equivalent but starts the checks earlier and makes it longer on the top end. So now, you just have to roll higher than the summation number of your damage on a ship size check.  I’ll test it. Damage Size Check 1 2 3 3 6 4 10 5 15 6 21 7 28 8 36 9 45 10 55 11 66 12 78 13 91 14 105 15 120 16 136 17 153 18 171 19 190 20 210 21 231...

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Secret Game Design web log

Posted by on Sep 29, 2016 in Game Design Blog | 1 comment

I have decided to keep a log of my secret game design process. Here are the reasons why I should not keep this log. 1. Nobody cares. It is depressing to address the universe and be ignored.  I’d rather talk to my buddies who at least are polite enough to nod and smile while they wait their turn for me to ignore their ideas. 2. Somebody might steal my stuff. See number one above.  I’ve had stuff in parallel to other designers but never had anything stolen. The fact is, putting my ideas out there is more protection than less. 3. I’m lazy. That’s right. I don’t want to have to do the work of writing stuff down. I’m so lazy, I accidentally put the above line in italics and can’t be bothered to fix it.   Having said all of that, it will be good for me to practice talking about my games in a one-sided forum.  I’ve noticed that much of the “Palaces” blind playtesting went horribly. I think this is because I’m much better at explaining in person than sending off rules. This forum forces me to think out loud in a way that doesn’t get feedback. Having said all of that, please feel free to give me feedback. This blog is intended for my private use.  This is the shelf above my workstation. Now, on to...

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Gorilla Games booth at Essen is F-132

Posted by on Sep 23, 2016 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Looking forward to another great year at Essen.  We’ll have a case of “Desert Island” shipped direct to the show.  The rest should be waiting for us when we get home as it travels by slow boat across the pacific. I’ll be showing off “Palaces” and a prototype for “Battlestations” Second Edition. Stop by and say hi!...

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Writing Rules for Idiots

Posted by on Sep 14, 2016 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

First off, I’m an idiot so please don’t be offended by my calling you an idiot.  Of course, that is an argumentum ad hominem. You should feel free to be insulted regardless of whether I call myself one. That tortured opening bit is an example of how and why communication needs streamlining.  I’ve got a card for Battlestations Second Edition Plot Twist Deck that reads  like this: Radiation Leak When any Engine is pumped for power Everyone in any Engine module suffers one die of damage. Okay, so this could be interpreted as the enemies on the enemy ship all pump their own engines and somehow the heroes in their own ship all get cooked.  I could clear this up by having it read instead: Radiation Leak When any Engine is pumped for power Everyone in any Engine module on that ship suffers one die of damage. I only added the three words, “on that ship” but it there were only 18 words to begin with and anybody who intentionally misinterprets the card shouldn’t be gaming anyway. So, do you have to write “idiot-proof” rules? No. In the first place you can’t. People will always find something to make a mistake on and in the second place, trying to do so makes your rules more dense.  Leave out the extraneous stuff.  Give enough information so that reasonable people will have no trouble correctly interpreting them and snarky jerks will have loopholes to point out before consensus common sense shuts them...

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Wordariffic Launch Party September 19th!

Posted by on Sep 2, 2016 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

We’re doing the official launch party for “Wordariffic” at 27 locations across the country on Saturday September 19th. I’ll be at the Game Haus in Glendale, California at 5 pm.  Check out these other locations to find the Wordariffic launch party near you! Toledo OH Checkmate Games & Hobbies 419-720-6901 Aurora CO Shep’s Games 303-690-0566 Jacksonville FL Cool Stuff Games 904-256-2056 Ferndale MI The Loaded Die 248-240-4174 Aurora CO Crit Castle Games 303-745-4140 Goshen IN Better World Books 574-534-1984 Newbury OH Diversions Gaming and Hobby 440-564-9142 Mamaroneck NY Modern Myths 914-630-4246 Garland TX A Galaxy Called Dallas 972-530-2600 Independence MO Game Café 816-252-7529 Honolulu HI Other Realms Ltd. 808-596-8236 Oklahoma City OK Game HQ 405-691-0509 West Chester PA The Games Keep 484-905-5533 Leesburg VA Leesburg Hobbies & Collectibles 703-779-8600 Plainville MA Battleground Games & Hobbies 503-316-1195 Long Beach MS Dark Side Gaming Lounge 228-284-0127 Jackson MI Nostalgia, Ink 517-784-8955 Cedar Grove NJ Time Warp Comics & Games 973-857-9788 Midvale UT Hastur Games & Comics 801-352-2605 Bountiful UT Game Haven 801-298-3261 Madison WI Pegasus Games 608-833-4263 Fremont CA Game Kastle 510-651-4263 Adrian MI Acropolis Games 517-577-6192 Lawrence KS Rolling Gnome Games 785-551-7070 Hicksville NY Game Master Games 516-597-5555 Fort Worth TX Collected TCU...

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