Mechanics without Games

  • Mechanics without Games

  • Daniel Josey

    July 21, 2021 at 9:59 am

    I want to discuss some mechanical ideas that lack the context of a game. Some have themes or represent something else but most are lost lonely mechanics.
    First I have been playing around with an idea for delayed income set in a Caribbean Colonization game. The primary idea is that players would send back to Europe goods,gold etc. that are in abundance in the Caribbean and Europe would send aid in the form of ships, troops, etc. The mechanic that supports this would be filling up a deck of merchant ships with cards from the players hands. Then after a round a set number of cards are drawn from the merchant deck indicating which ships made it back home. These ships then trigger the future income of the players based on the goods they have brought to the homeland. Finally, part of play would be the ability to raid and plunder opponents merchants but drawing them from the deck of merchant ships. Thoughts?
    Other related ideas that you don’t need to read unless interested:The mechanic could allow for players to place decoys and naval ships into the merchant deck as a surprise/defense.There could be an active method of the same mechanic (compared to passively hoping your ship makes it through the deck) where you have map spaces that represent the journey home. This would allow for both pirating and escorting your own ships to provide protection.
    Things that I struggle to think through without the larger game context established:How to determine what goods the merchant ships provide on arrival.The machinations of the homelands conflicts etc. how does your success in the Caribbean help the larger goals of the nation you are plying as it competes with other euro nations?

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