Bug – perceptual binding, identity and meaning in a new sort of polyomino game

This post is about a game I've invented called Bug. It's a 2 player game where you build shapes on a hexagonal board, which then eat each other. The shapes that survive grow into different, larger shapes until one player runs out of space to grow (and thus wins). You can find the rules toward … Continue reading Bug – perceptual binding, identity and meaning in a new sort of polyomino game

Chess Variant: Manifest Chesstiny

I rarely post games I haven't tested to death these days, especially Chess variants, which I stopped designing 20 years ago. But I really like this one so I'm posting it. It's simple, clear, and does something like what Fischer Random Chess does (creates a great many more openings), but without the randomness. Equipment: played … Continue reading Chess Variant: Manifest Chesstiny

Why Oceans’ defensive traits are weak and why we love that

Disclaimer: this post is about a game we're currently designing - Oceans: An Evolution Game. Everything we say about it could be negated by future decisions we haven't made yet. We're potential future liars! Be warned. We (marine biologist Brian O'Neill and game designer Nick Bentley) have been at work designing Oceans since last November. … Continue reading Why Oceans’ defensive traits are weak and why we love that

Streamlining Oceans with our Designated Blowhard™ (and trait contest winner announced)

This post was written by Nick, one of Oceans' co-designers (Brian, the other co-designer, added remarks in italicized parentheses).  My favorite thing to do in life is design games. My second favorite thing is to develop techniques for designing games better (His third favorite thing probably has something to do with thinking about how to think … Continue reading Streamlining Oceans with our Designated Blowhard™ (and trait contest winner announced)

Three dimensions of theme in Oceans, and one challenge

In Lewis Carrol’s classic tale, Through the Looking-Glass, Alice asks the Red Queen why she’s running everywhere. The Red Queen answers, “…It takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.” What does this have to do with Oceans, the soon-to-be greatest board game of all time? There’s an aspect of … Continue reading Three dimensions of theme in Oceans, and one challenge

Ocean Traits! Artist sketches, a call for trait ideas, and a free copy of Oceans

Cover art character sketch The thoughtfulness of BGG commenters is a constant surprise. When we started writing about Oceans, we didn't expect readers there to help us design the thing. We expected death threats and sarcasm. But BGG isn't like the rest of the internet. First, BGGers helped us name the game. After more than … Continue reading Ocean Traits! Artist sketches, a call for trait ideas, and a free copy of Oceans