Sunday, January 12, 2014

Squabblin' Corbies


+Erik McGrath

I am participating in a contest at +Will Design a Game for Art . If you are not familiar with this the goal is to design a game based on artwork by +Laura Hamilton . You can see a few of the pieces I used in my design in this post. Please keep in mind that these all belong solely to Laura and that they are not for redistribution. 

If you'd like to see more of her work go here: Laura Hamilton's Portfolio.

You may recognize the ninjas in the top line as those from Sudden Death.

The Game

Squabblin' Corbies is a game for 2 players about two groups of ravens arguing over several objects at several locations near a village. These events are observed by a pair of children as they walk from their village through each location over the course of the day until they return home. 

There are 6 ravens, 6 places and 6 objects of note. All are numbered 1-6, Each player gets 3 ravens and tries to have them collect the items with their number and then get to the place with that number so they can nest for the night.

When rival ravens are at the same location they may squabble over the objects they are carrying. Since a raven can only carry one thing in its beak at a time it's important to know which one they take. Larger ravens take objects they like from the smaller ones (compare their numbers, higher numbered ravens are larger). However ravens don't take things they don't like so they will only squabble for an object if the smaller raven has either their favorite one (same number) or a similar one (number within 1 of the raven's).

Friendly ravens may freely exchange objects when at the same location so long as neither is forced to take an object it likes less than the one it carries. So be careful because that might mean it holds onto another of your raven's favorite objects.

The very smallest raven (#1) gets pushed around a lot but it is so quick that when in a squabble with raven #6 the little one wins. The player who controls #1 also takes the first turn.

The children act as a turn counter. After the second player takes a turn they advance the children to the next location. When the children advance off the last location, the game ends. As there are six locations, this means the game always lasts 7 turns.



Playtesting

Since the contest isn't over yet, Squabblin' Corbies is not available for public play. Once it's finished up though there will be a PNP doc for download. Hopefully it will contain Laura's art, but that is getting ahead of ourselves because I haven't talked to her about the aftermath yet. :)