Prototyping, Play testing and Further Investigation

Hi, everyone welcomes back to my blog. This week is about conducting future Investigation of board game’s prototyping and Playtesting of the game.


To get the idea of the game that I’m prototyping there are two influences aspects. First, as I mentioned before in week 3 and 7 that over this semester I have been playing a number of board games and the one I really like/enjoy is the Splendor [you can find out why HERE]. Second, is the game that I played when I was younger ‘SimCity’. As of that time, the game will be borrowing some of the mechanics from Splendor and using SimCity’s themes to create the perfect game for me. Basically, each player will be acting as a mayor of that city at the start of the game they will be given a blank map of the city. Each turn of the game players can collect four different resources and that resources will be used to trade for development/building block such as fire station, police station, housing area, school, shopping mall, water, and etc. to fill-up the city. At this stage, I have not done any playtesting yet because it’s just an Idea on the paper.


Later in the semester I have a discussion with my tutor and peer about the game. What I get from the discussion is different idea/example for me to improve the project and make the games more appealing to general public. What I did is making a prototype based on the new idea, which is similar to the card game called Honshu [Japan]. At this stage, the prototype is all in the regular a4 paper with some writing on it to identify which is what [see picture below]. Playtesting with this prototype has been very challenging for myself and friends to connecting cards together because every turn we have to go back and read all the word again [if we have a picture card would be so much easier because the player can just match the graphic].


Original prototype from stage2 playing card is size of 63mm x 88mm which, when I’m trying to make six squares [two across and three down] it leave an unusable space on the size of the cards. Together with when I’m trying to join the cards by overlapping or underlapping the cards don’t join perfectly. To solve this problem, I am making a card size to 63 x 94.5mm which make six squares fit perfectly at 31.5 x 31.5mm

Squares block can be:

  1. City [two version] – common
  2. Parks [two version] – common
  3. Blank space – common
  4. Unusable area – common
  5. Water – rare
  6. Electricity – rare
  7. Gas– rare
  8. Waste Management – rare
  9. Police Station – rare
  10. Fire Station – rare

All the card is randomly selected Squares block from common to rare accepting the starter card, which perfectly selected Squares block for the benefit of the player.

In this stage to make the game more interesting, I add a disaster cards and Lucky/Management plan cards. Disaster cards will effect in lost of city block, park, and resources [water, gas, etc.]. Lucky/Management plan cards can make disaster go away, allow the player to rearrange their cards or plan management for the future disasters. How to get these cards? At the beginning of the turn, each player will be tossing a dice if they get 1,2,3 is a lucky card and if they get higher than that is the disaster card. After a couple plays tests I find that some of the game gone for really long and some of the game went really fast. To improve the game I add more in the game rule. First, each play can only be using 15 cards maximum in order to complete their city. Second, if one of the players has all the ten squares block as I mention above that player automatic win and other player processing to score counting. As of now to make this game better I will have to go back to the scoring system and redefine it, this is because in the playing cards I have added too many of the city and parks Square which make it easier for a player to join the card. TBC…

after I finish the project I will be posting a full version here. Here are some of the pictures of the play testing:

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