Friday, February 1, 2013

Par-tay

Last night I held another playtest of HeroCraft, this time around the big changes were to Cities, the Boon limit, Shrines, and the Party system. Banding together to take down a big monster has always been a key objective of mine, and it's fun when it happens. My regular playtesters asked why they couldn't just work together all of the time, and it was a pretty valid point. I began working on the rules for what's now called the "Party" system, and last night I wanted to test it. Interestingly enough, we had more people over than I expected resulting in a full-blown six player game of HeroCraft. Up until this point I'd tested in groups ranging from 3-5, and so I was a little nervous how the game would handle six.

Right off the bat, two people decided they were going to party up and become a powerhouse team. My friend had a rough start and asked if I wanted to team up with him, and I agreed. By turn five there were two parties and two single players. There are a few rules clarifications that I need to hammer out, but for the most part everyone agreed that the system was fun. Zak, one of the regular testers, said that of all the games we've played so far, that this latest version was his favorite. That's pretty exciting to me.

The next step is a small, but pivotal, one. Version 1.0 is the beta, and that means I'm locking feature changes. I have to work really hard on making sure everything is set, as the next playtest will determine if I'm ready to contact an old professor of mine and set up cold-testing sessions with his GAM170 students. I'm petrified of the thought, but it's necessary and I have to face it sooner or later. The biggest challenge is going to be getting the rules and cheatsheets to a point that players are able to figure it all out without me hovering behind them.

And lastly, my buddy Dima sent in the second piece of art: The Sword.

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