w00t 2014

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This years Play Festival: w00t is going to be blazingly fun. We are in the middle of organizing it and finding cool game designers and speakers to join us. Right now we need your games. If you have a game that could be played at w00t, please submit it to our open call here (deadline April 1st, so hurry).

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The Math of Who Took the Apple?

Last Nordic Game Jam I designed a physical card game called Who Took the Apple? The game is a four player game, involving giant sized cards, 4 beers, a bucket and an apple… oh – and it is played backwards in time!Cards and Bucket

The game feature beautiful artwork by Simon Gustafsson from RedGrim and you can download it, print and play it right now.

Some people find the mechanics somewhat perplexing, which has made me write this blog post. I have to warn you, this will be rather lengthy; involve a good deal of economic game theory a dash of temporal logic and constant references to apples, buckets and beers. In the end though, I think writing this made me realize a thing or two about why some board games works, even though they in “theory” shouldn’t. So please continue reading:

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Puzzle Strike Pre-Orders

Puzzle Strike

Pre-orders are open for Dave Sirlin’s upcoming board game, Puzzle Strike.

Lau and I are really excited for this one. The game seems like a clever mix between Dominion and arcade favorite Puzzle Fighter. Like Puzzle Fighter, it’s got that same thrilling dynamic in which you’re at your strongest right when you’re closest to death.

You can check out the rules here.

Hell, I even dished out the cash for the Deluxe Version. The initial print run is limited, so there was no way I was going to miss out!

Sirlin is the perfect guy to design this type of game. He was the designer who re-balanced Puzzle Fighter and Super Street Fighter II Turbo for their XBLA re-releases. His article on the process of re-designing Puzzle Fighter remains my single favorite game design case study ever written… mostly because I’m obsessed with Puzzle Fighter, but still, it’s an absolute must-read if you’re an aspiring game developer. I also enthusiastically recommend his classic articles on multiplayer game balance.

It sounds like Sirlin is working on a number of other upcoming board games. Check out his web site.