Game Design Friday: Gygaxian

Game Design Friday: Gygaxian

Gygaxian is a competitive creation game, with several "dungeon masters" (known here as GameGods) battling for control over the direction of a fantasy world. The sole Player moves about this world, in search of whatever treasure or other ultimate goal he chooses. Meanwhile, the GameGods build the world as the player traverses it, extemporaneously creating the map and its details through description (and dice).

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Just a quick note on game mechanics:
As I understand it, a GG who rolled low for Confidence will never be able to take control of the game, not to mentiopn the fact that a GG with triply low scores is truly and utterly fucked. (As was the case in D&D all those years ago).

Remember that creating items adds to your confidence. So if we allow GameGods who are not in control of an area to create things in that area, this problem goes away. (It also makes it so that those not currently in control have something to do other than sit on their hands)

Of course, if this is allowed, there needs to be some way for the GG in control to veto or delete the item, probably at the cost of the creativity they would have gained, plus one resolution. An item vetoed in this way costs the creator the confidence they would have gained.

With this in place, we may want to restrict item creation -- perhaps to some concept of rounds -- when the GG in control wants to create an item or NPC, it opens a round of item creation during which each GG has the opportunity to create one other item or NPC. That way the other GG's aren't able to just burn the resolution of the controlling GG by creating endless amounts outlandish things.

Finally, I'd suggest an overall goal be established for the game by the player. At the beginning, the player can declare what their goal is -- attain the foo, save the bar, whatever. Of course, to reach that goal, one of the game gods will need to create the foo or the bar which means that, depending on how many characters the foo or bar is, we have an idea of how much creativity it will take to reach it. For instance, saving the "princess" is a heck of a lot easier than destroying "The Ring of Penultimate Evil!" (not to be confused with the ring of ultimate evil, which you don't even want to go near.)

This is, by far, my favorite of your game designs, and something I think we might sit down and try for the sheer improvisational hilarity.

sharp_as_a_cork:
As I understand it, a GG who rolled low for Confidence will never be able to take control of the game, not to mentiopn the fact that a GG with triply low scores is truly and utterly fucked. (As was the case in D&D all those years ago).

Well, a GG can choose which of his rolls to commit to which attribute, although a GG who rolls triply poor is indeed a bit "fucked" as they say. Can we think of an elegant design solution to this problem?

Kwil:
Remember that creating items adds to your confidence. So if we allow GameGods who are not in control of an area to create things in that area, this problem goes away. (It also makes it so that those not currently in control have something to do other than sit on their hands)

The problem with this idea is that it turns the world-creation into a collaborative effort, rather than a competitive one. Still, the idea of a Confidence boost for non-active GGs is worth looking into. Maybe a sort of peripheral "mini-game" could be played by the non-controlling GGs in order to boost Confidence (like heckling). Any suggestions for how this mini-game could work?

Archon:
This is, by far, my favorite of your game designs, and something I think we might sit down and try for the sheer improvisational hilarity.

I'm happy to hear you enjoyed it! This month's design will be a bit more low-key, returning to my love of simple dice games, coupled with the fast-paced tempo of Pounce and the head-pounding pattern recognition of Set.

 

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