I’m new here so I just wanted to briefly introduce myself. I’ve been listening to the BGDL Podcast off and on for a while now, and I have always wanted to be a game designer, but I’m terrified of the prospect of combining passion and career. My favorite games tend to be Euro games like Catan and Carcassone as well as worker placement games like Agricola and Everdell.
My game idea consists of a dying earth. The surface is quickly becoming uninhabitable, so a small group of people has decided to make a new life underground. Throughout the game, the players will use workers to mine and gather resources to cooperatively build a civilization as competing factions. This will include a growing board as players set out on expeditions to generate cave systems to explore.
My primary concern is remaking a game already in existence. Does this sound too similar to another game you know?
I would also love to hear general feedback on the concept, this is new for me!
Welcome to the club, and great see you to introduce yourself with a game-idea!
If I may: don’t fret over your main concern of accidentally duplicating another game. I can’t think of one and – more importantly – you’ll never create an exact copy. Boardgame mechanics/theme are not subject to ownership and the entire industry is based on (re)mixing existing things that work.
The theme sounds great – a dying earth feels like something that would work well with some urgency on the time-line of the game. Instead of your default ‘7 years/rounds’, you can be more creative and think of some event-based timer where your faction needs to have finished their escape vehicle, otherwise a chasm in the earth will kill them.
It could also be action-spaces on some tectonic plates shifting, that uncover and cover some actions you can take during the game (or maybe an action becomes more and more expansive as it drifts away from your base).
Finally, the external event is so dangerous and grand – it would seem weird if there are no moments where you’d want to work yourself towards points to win, but also work together to stop overarching doom. Something like Lowlands, where you try to win with a sheep-farm, while also working together to build a dyke to prevent a flood that will hurt you both: https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/242804/low-lands
Love the ideas, especially the urgency of the timeline. I have been thinking about how to restrain the game length so it doesn’t get unbearably long (many of the games I play suffer from this) and I think this would be a great way to do that!
I’ve never heard of Lowlands, great suggestion! I’ll have to take a look at that.