One of our first assignments for Game Design class was to create a rapid prototype of a board game.
We were given several restrictions, 15 minutes and a wing and a prayer.
We were told:
-The game had to be a race to the finish
-There could be no clear loser- no elimination
-The game premise had to be based on a famine/hunger
My thoughts immediately jumped to an alien race who had to leave their planet after stripping their home of its resources.
I decided that each player would play as a different group of aliens, all leaving the same planet, going on their own to collect new resources from other planets and find a new place to call home.
Each player (2-6 can play) are given a spaceship token and 10 Population tokens, each Population token [P] represents 1 billion of your people, travelling in the space ship.
As the player moves across the board, they may land on a strange, populated planet.
Each planet on the board has 3 different values indicating Population[P] (1 Population indicating 1 billion), Seeds[S] and Livestock [L]. If the player lands on a planet, they may try and destroy the population (roll a 4 or higher on a d6, for each 1(billion) population on the planet) in order to obtain the planet's resources for their own use. If the player loses a battle against the planet (roll a 3 or a lower), they must discard a population token- indicating they've lost 1 billion of their people. The player may continue to battle, but they are out of the game if they lose all 10 of their population tokens. However, if a player chooses to retreat from a battle, they may do so, and continue on the path on their next turn.
The game would be over once the first player landed on the "ideal planet" in the center of the board. This planet has no population and no resources, so this race may settle and start a new life with the seeds and livestock they have taken from other planets.
En route to the "ideal planet", between the other strange planets, there are star blocks a player can land on. Should a character land on a star block they must pick up a "star card". The star cards have directions on them for the player to either gain or lose 1 or more seed token(s), livestock token(s), population token(s) and even the chance to skip your next turn.
The winner of the game is decided by the race's potential to survive, as calculated by a point system:
1 Seed = 3 points
1 Livestock = 1 point
1 Population = 2 points
Even if a player lands on the ideal planet, that does not mean they have the highest probability of survival.
Below you can see what my board and pieces looked like for this game:
The game board
Top: The player tokens (space ships)
Middle: Population, Livestock and Seed tokens
Bottom: Star cards
Here you can see my rules:
Unfortunately my original idea for the game did not get translated onto the rule sheet, as well as I had hoped. You can see my original rules in the above photo.
Given 15 minutes to create this entire game and its rule left me with very little time to try and express everything I wanted to- which lead to my game being torn to shreds during its first play test!