The game designs of the future are here--created by middle schoolers, no less.
Kathleen Mercury
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Hey Gamers!

And we're done! Last day of school! Yay!!!!!!

Thanks to everyone who thumbed, asked questions or posted comments. My students get so excited (and a wee bit competitive) as the thumbs and comments roll in. Thanks to the BGG community for your support, and we'll see you in the fall!


Every semester I am fortunate to teach board game design to my middle school students in our gifted class. The whole semester is all about board games and culminates with each student designing their own full prototype and writing a full ruleset. This semester, I have 28 students' designs to proudly present.

New this year, I had some very prolific designers! Two students not only made their own games, but also collaborated on at least two others! It was exciting to see them so driven and focused on this fantastic hobby.

We use a process inspired by the Stanford d.school's model of prototype development which emphasizes quick prototype development and quality feedback. Given that we spend one quarter playing and studying games, students basically have one quarter to design, build, and test their own prototypes. So quick prototype development and feedback are really important to us, as are the design mindsets:

Bias towards action
Collaborate across boundaries
Focus on human values
Be mindful of process
Prototype towards a solution
Show, don't tell

Over the course of the semester, the students created a short game with random materials, then learned about mechanics. Then, each learned the rules for a published game and taught it to the class in small rotating groups so they each played between 6 and 8 games (more would come later). Next, they worked on selecting a theme that incorporated conflict, and then chose mechanics that would complement the theme. They then worked on prototyping, clarifying objectives and victory conditions, changing the prototype, and finally writing rules.

So, I have these amazing prototypes to share with everyone. As always, I am eternally surprised by the creativity and difficult choices my students make in developing their prototypes. A mountain of work in a semester, and these fantastic students deserve every bit of credit you can sling their way.

For their blurbs below, they had to provide the following information:
1. Provide a short Description:
2. Describe the gameplay—what do players do on their turns, how do the components of the game interact with each other?
3. Why did you choose this theme?
4. Game Mechanics: what are they and how are they used?
5. How do players win and how the game ends?
6. WHY IS YOUR GAME AWESOME AND AMAZING?

More designs and pictures will continue to be added.

Please feel free to thumb, ask questions, and/or comment on games. My students definitely pay attention to this. I will have students respond to every comment and question.

Special thanks to three generous, talented local game designers for coming in to my classes to talk about their games and to answer questions. Thanks to the following designers who came in to speak with my class:

My soulmate, mark sellmeyer,
mark sellmeyer
United States
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Missouri
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, designer of Spin Monkeys and graphic designer of Fistful of Dinero.

Aaron belmer,
Aaron Belmer
United States
Chesterfield
Missouri
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, designer of Sanitarium, Conquest of Speros, and the man behind Magic House and Fistful of Dinero.

Chris Darden,
Chris Darden
United States
Lake Saint Louis
Missouri
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, designer of Dungeon Roll and my favorite RPG GM.

I created a Meta Geeklist for all my former posts about my students' work. You can subscribe to it, if you'd like to see what we've done and get updates on future posts. http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/156902/meta-geeklist-f...

Also, I have a website where I am putting all my game design materials. Please note I am a lot behind, but my goal for summer is to push out all the materials I've been updating this semester, so take a look at http://www.kathleenmercury.com. I welcome collaboration, comments, and suggestions.

Thanks so much for supporting my students and their work!
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1. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Magician’s Magic Mayhem by J.P.


You are a magician and you love to do amazing and awesome card tricks. You want your card tricks to be better than everyone else’s. Will you master the card tricks?
The goal of the game is to make the patterns with your cards and you get more points.

In a turn, players find what cards they need and see if on their turn they should try to stop other players or help themselves. Also, they will make a plan and try to use it by placing their cards on the board to make a pattern and stop other players from making the patterns. Finally, players will move any of their card the number of spaces they can move and draw one card to add to their hand of cards, but if they make a pattern they will get the number of points and the cards used to make the pattern will go back to the player’s hand. Every card has a very special effect that a player can use on their turn if the want. This makes the game a little more interesting.

I choose the theme of magic because it is alway interesting and mysterious at the same time so it puzzles everyone.

The many mechanics are hand management and worker placement. Hand management is use so players can plan what they want to do on their turns that can help themselves and hurt other players. Worker placement is use to execute plans to get the points needed to win the game by making patterns with the cards.

The game ends when a player reaches 20 or more points or the end game card appears in the pattern card space and then the player with the most points win if there is a tie the player with the most amount of challenges left wins. I that ties then the player with the least amount of card of the board wins.

My game is awesome and amazing because it has amazing qualities like cards and patterns. Also, players can create it very easy so they can play it without buying anything.
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2. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Missouri
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Treasure Trove by S.M.

You are a lord who is searching for new lands, searching for gold, and conquering your enemies. As a lord your goal is to find and collect a total of four gold by either mining it or stealing it from your enemies to secure your kingdom's wealth and safety.

On an average turn many things can take place ranging from movement, farming, and attacking your enemies. Only some choices cost actions for example mining and farming don’t cost actions, while attacking and flipping tiles over do cost actions..

I chose the medieval theme because it really brought out interesting parts and mechanics in my game really binding my game together. Also it allowed me to incorporate many of the mechanics I wanted to use, this theme allowed me to use all of the mechanics and ideas I wanted to use.

I have many game mechanics that really play to each others advantage, bringing out specialties and fun parts of my game for example tile placement and worker movement make the game similar to ruling your kingdom. Also having a modular board makes the game similar to discovering new lands.

The game ends when a player collects four gold be either robbing it, mining it, or trading for it. The most likely way to win is by a combination of all three ways to collect gold because it is unlikely to only use one strategy to collect all the gold you need.

The thing that makes my game stand out is the fact the my game includes a modular board that allows you to roam and collect resources. Additionally I have included a crafting mechanic where you may combine multiple resources to create workers, troops, and even different resources.
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3. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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ᖷªkir$ by K.S.


As a weary traveler, you’re arrived in a strange marketplace - every day that you are there your persona changes. But you do know this: you can turn into one of 3 characters during your stay: a police officer, a pickpocket, or the gamemaster. Each role has a mission. But come on - you’re not that boring! But you are greedy. So on the side you’re trying to collect as much money as you can before your stay in the market runs out. Do you choose to work with others? Or will greed be your driving force? Will you succeed? Or will you come out penniless?

The game is broken up into rounds. Per round, your persona is changed, and you have the round to complete your mission. The missions are simple. The police tries to catch the pickpocket(s). The pickpocket's) tries/try to get away with the money. And the gamemaster gets to stir up trouble…...yet also has to make sure the game runs smoothly. But there’s a small catch: the pickpocket should stay hidden, right? So when each player moves, everybody’s eyes are closed except the player making an action and the gamemaster (who knows everything…..mwahahahaha). Then, at the end of each round all the players get 1 minute to talk, yell, debate, and bicker with each other to try to figure out who the pickpocket is. Then everybody will go around and state who they thought the pickpocket was and who the pickpocket stole from. The gamemaster will inform each player if they were right or wrong after everybody has stated their case.

Oh yeah, and did I mention that there was a reward for whoever was right?


I had a hard time thinking of a theme, but then I saw Apollo Robbins’ TED talk and it hit me: pickpockets vs. the police. A classic battle between good and evil that perfectly fits a board game. And tossing in a gamemaster just helps to balance out some of the odds in the game. I mean, what more do you need in a theme? Good. Evil. Boom. Done.

I have one main mechanic in my game: APA, or Action-Point-Allowance. In my game every player has one turn per round. During that one turn, each player also has 2 moves. The player gets to pick their 2 moves from a list, which varies from each role to another. There are a few other mechanics which are the actions, but they aren’t major. Dice-rolling will never work for this (let’s be real) and APA was clearly the most logical mechanic to use in my game. Each player gets to pick his/her actions, and those actions clearly impact the actions of others and the overall game.

At the end of the game each player counts up the amount of points on the backs of his/her white chips. (In this market, points = currency). Whoever has the most points wins!!! The losers must give up all their money to the winner of the game!
The game ends when……….
Your stay in the market is over, and it’s time to go home. Bye! - a.k.a. 17 rounds have been played.
A player ends the game. This can happen when a player thinks they know who the pickpocket is and who the pickpocket stole from. If the player states this before the debate session and he/she happen to be right, then the market is burnt down in a fire, and you and the other fellow survivors must count to see how much you guys have earned! - a.k.a. the game terminates. THIS CAN ONLY HAPPEN AFTER THE 8TH ROUND HAS BEEN PLAYED.

WHY IS YOUR GAME AWESOME AND AMAZING?
Hm………..just go to Europe or go see Apollo Robbins.


wait wait wait is that somebody behind you pinching your wallet???!!
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4. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Night Miner by B.Y.


You wander through the night, in search for a suitable shelter in this dark night. You see the shine of a cave light, and you see the glint of a pickaxe. You have an ambitious thought - to mine for riches. But you hear commotion in the mine, and you realize that others are there. Will you be able to get out safely to earn riches, or will you be brought down by the many others, to be forever lost?

Players will take one energy after each player’s turn is over. They use as much energy as they have to perform actions like mining, moving, or stealing. The players try to earn resources (dirt, stone, gems) to sell for coins, which they can use to purchase better equipment, while the whole time trying to be the wealthiest. The resources can be sold for coins, which the player will use to buy equipment to help their progress in gaining coins and in efficiency throughout the game. Players will also try to slow or take others down by stealing from them. Players may also become “knocked out” if they use up all of their energy.

I chose this theme because I like the idea of luck. Since mining can be mostly luck, I wanted to make this game seem like a competitive game where players are anxious about what they will mine. If they do mine a gem, then they now must be faced with the possibility of losing it. So mining was the perfect theme that I wanted. It had the excitement of finding what you mined, the feeling of power when you carried lots of riches and was wealthy, and the feeling of fear when you may lose everything that you earned and the urge to protect your goods.

Chit Pull - This is a big part of my game, since players mine by taking bits of chips out of mines when they mine. This put luck and the excitement of what the player will earn. It is also portable and easy to use.
Trading- Players may trade resources, coins, and energy for anything they bargain for.
Area Movement- Players move around the board space using energy cubes, this allows players to progress forward and to reach certain spaces.
Hand Management- The game has a mix of this mechanic. Players will have to manage their energy level and their currency when they buy or trade.

Players win by being the first to earn 15 coins and reaching the spawn space first. The game ends when either a
player wins or all resources are mined.

My game is awesome because it has lots of excitement in mining in what you will get. Then, there is the urgency to keep on going and the lust to take others down. It’s also very amazing because you can interact with the environment and sell resources for economy - everybody loves economy, upgrades, and power/wealth…..right?
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5. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Penguin Snacks and Seal Attacks by L.C.

You and your penguin friends are trying to get the most food for yourselves by winning the race and getting bonus points, or by gathering the most food. The objective of this game is to have the most food points at the end.

When it is your turn, you can move your penguin and receive fish, stars, or squids. Your penguin can move 2 spaces on land, 3 spaces in water, and if you move from land to water (vice versa) your turn ends immediately after the transaction. At the end of your turn, you can move hungry dolphin towards other players and try to attack them (you get to steal a couple of food points from him/her).

I chose this theme because I really like penguins and I like games where players race each other, so I thought it would be cool if I could combine those two and make a game where penguins race one another.

One mechanic in my game is a modular board. By using this mechanic, the game is slightly altered every time and players cannot take one specific path every single time they play. Another mechanic is area movement. Players move their penguin all over the board, trying to gather up food while avoiding predators along the way.

The game can end two ways. First of all, after one player crosses the finish line, the game ends immediately and the player receives bonus food points. Whoever has the most food points at the end wins. Or the first player to gather a certain number of food points wins (depending on the number of players).

My game is awesome and amazing because it is something I am really proud of. When I first heard that we had to design a board game of our own, I started to panic because I am really bad at coming up with ideas, and I thought that I would never be able to create anything playable. After learning about all of the things that went into board game design (brainstorm, research, mechanics, rules, etc) I am very happy to know that I could apply all of those things to my work, and actually design my own board game!
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6. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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The Arena by J.O.

The best conquerors of the world have met together for a last test of greatness in The Arena. The Arena contains different successful civilizations from history. Your job is to gain money and wealth from conquering civilizations and bartering trade stops, buy and build parts of a palace, and complete the course of The Arena to become the King of all Conquerors.

During each turn, you can make up to seven actions. Actions include playing cards and fighting civilizations. The cards that you can play are move, gain treasure, steal treasure, and get fined. The most commonly played would probably be move cards, since you can not move forward without them.

I chose the theme of conquerors because I have been fascinated with strategy in warfare and I think that these conquerors were very smart people, having great accomplishments too.

Chit Pull: To fight civilizations, you will pull chits from a bag to select your troops and the defensive troops.
Point-To-Point Movement: Players will move through a course using cards.
Hand Management: Players will make decisions about what types of cards they play.
Action Point Allowance: Players are limited to a certain amount of actions per turn.
Programmed Action: Players have to order their troops in a way that they want and use that order until done fighting.
Card Drafting: Players draw cards from decks for use during turns.
Set Collection: Players collect money to build their palace.
Variable Player Powers: There are different conquerors that you can choose from.

The game ends when one player both completes the course of The Arena and builds their palace. The one player that completes the course and builds their palace wins.

This game is fun because of the competition to steal and gain money to buy a palace, as well as completing the course faster than others.
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7. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Infection by A.R.S. and S.B.M.

You are a body defending yourself from the infection preparing to shutdown your organs, or a virus getting ready to eliminate and infect the body. Prepare to try to defend from the masses of virus cells massing against you slowly conquering you, or attack the body. Unless you end the virus first destroying all of the enemy virus cells, or you destroy the body first.

On an average turn the body can multiply and send out antibodies or prepare to send out white cells. The virus can multiply, move, and attack on an average turn shutting the body down.

The theme relates to how the virus can shut down ‘organs’ which take away actions giving the virus an advantage. Even though the virus has half as many actions it can multiply much faster.

The mechanic action point allowance is used in this game much differently than others because actions can actually be taken away from the body as the organs shut down.

The game ends when either the body locks out the virus or eliminates all virus cells, or when the virus enters the body or shuts down all organs.

Our game is really unique because of the way that the virus can actually shut down the bodies organs and take away their actions. Also we have a really interest combination of themes and mechanics and how they all blend together.
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8. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Taxi Havoc by A. A.

In Taxi Havoc, you are a taxi driver trying to deliver the most passengers. The more passengers you deliver the higher chance you have to win this competition. Win by getting the most points before all the passengers are taken by other people.

During a player’s turn, he or she must first roll a dice to see if he or she will get a bonus that turn. After that procedure is done, the player will use their action points to move around the board and try to collect passengers. If the passenger has points they can also place tar which costs 1 action point and 1 game point. The police is a part of the game where you move by rolling its symbol on the dice. The police tries to ram into players and make them lose points.

I chose this taxi theme of my game because it has sentimental value to my childhood. My game has A LOT of luck in it. Rolling dice, drawing cards, etc.. has much luck which can be very fun to lots of people. I myself enjoy luck, so that is why I chose this theme for my game.

Some mechanics in my game are action point allowance, pick up and deliver, dice rolling, and chit pull system. I use the action point allowance when players have 3 or 4 actions per turn and must use their actions wisely. I use pick up and deliver in most of my game, especially when picking up passengers and delivering them to the right location. I have dice rolling in my game to see if the player can get a bonus on their turn. Last I have a chit pull system in my game which you use after dropping of a passenger to get points.

The game ends when all of the passengers on the board are collect and delivered by the players playing the game. The winner is determined by the number of points each player has collected. The player with the most points wins the game. If there is a tie in points, you see which player has the most passengers delivered and they are declared the winner.

As I was growing up, I have always had an interest in cars, especially during the ages 7-9. I never thought I would have a chance of making a game about taxis and police cars. My game is special because it gave me a glimpse of my past self and how much sentimental value those memories have. From taxis to police cars, I think that I have made my younger self proud.
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9. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Space Run by Z. B.

It is the year 3528 and you were exploring space. Eventually you got trapped in a black hole. Now try to escape. Take a wrong turn and end up in a parallel universe. Betray your friends, it might be necessary.

Create the board, move around, place point cubes, cause disaster, and get help. The solar energy point cubes will let you move to different places and change the board. The valuable item point cubes are how you win the game. The modular board pieces are what make up the board and what players move on.

I chose this theme because I had ideas for two games. One was space themed and one didn’t have a theme. I just applied the theme to this game because I was not sure how to make the other game work.

The mechanics for this game are modular board, action point allowance, tile placement, point to point movement, and dice rolling. The modular board, tile placement and point to point movement are related. The modular board is a board with outlines of where the tiles can be placed. The tiles are what players move on from one corner of the board to another.

The game ends once a player escapes the black hole, but there is still 5 more rounds for remaining players to try escaping. At most there can be 10 extra rounds at the end of the game. A player wins if they have collected the most valuable item cubes. The first person out might not be the winner.

My game is amazing because of how the theme and the mechanics of the game go together well. The pieces and board had gone through many different designs before I had chosen my final ones.
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10. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Volcano Spelunkers by J.C.

Four miners were searching for a place rich with valuable gems until they found a volcano with some of the most valuable gems in the world. Each one competes to try to gain the most money from mining. However, it is not an easy task. The miners will have to avoid the lava and the beast that lurks under it.

Each turn players roll the action point die, which determines how many points they have to move and mine gems. Players can sell gems for money. After each player has taken their turn, a player rolls the lava and spider dice. These determine how much the lava rises and where the spider moves. If a player is caught by the lava or spider, they have to drop all of their gems and travel back out of the volcano. There are also many purchasable pickaxes and collectible power-ups that help players mine and move faster.

I chose this theme because I got idea of having a game that incorporates rising and falling lava. And whenever I think of lava, I think of a place full of valuable gems. So then I got the idea to incorporate mining in the game too. The theme turns mining into a volcano adventure!

Game Mechanics and how you use them:
Action point allowance-gives you energy to move and mine.
Press your luck-you can risk going into deeper layers hoping the lava doesn’t rise.
Dice rolling-players roll action point, spider, and lava dice.
Grid movement-players move on a grid of squares.

When all the gems are mined, whoever has the most money wins!

My game is awesome because it makes mining fun and interesting since it’s in a volcano with rising and falling lava.

Mercury note: John is the king of Google Drawing and wanted closeups of his cards.
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11. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Pearl Party by M.M.

The game Pearl Party is set in the warm tropical, waters of Hawaii. You are a pearl diver trying to collect priceless pearls. It is your job to find the most valuable pearls, cash them in and return to the sandy shores.

On your turn you can move your pearl diver piece up to four spaces. The space you land on, that is the token you pick up. Underneath the token there will either be a pearl or shark written on it. A pearl can either be black, pink, yellow, or white. Black pearls are worth 5 points, pink 3 points, yellow 2 points and white 1 point. If there is a shark underneath the token you have to go to the shark attack hospital and you lose your turn. Also, you have the choice to move onto a mermaid spot. This means you can take a pearl from anyone. Once you have collected 5 pearls, you must travel to the island to cash the pearls in, but getting there is hard. There are obstacles such as pearl-stealing octopuses and dangerous sharks. Once all tokens are collected from the board, players start to make there way back to shore to end the game. At the shore, you add up the value of each pearl. Whoever has the most points wins.

I choose this theme because it is very unique. There are very few (if any) board games about pearls. It is something different for the players, which they enjoy.
Also, Pearl Party is an amazing game because it lets you experience something different. Most people will not go pearl diving in their lifetime, but they can with my game!

Game Mechanics and how you use them:
Set Collection- Players collect pearls throughout the game which are then used as points to see who wins.
Chit Pull System- To mix up tokens, they are placed in a bag, mixed, and then placed on the board at random.
Action Point Allowance- You are allowed to move up to 4 spaces per turn.
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12. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
Missouri
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Rainbow Ready by I.B.

The wind has blown away the rainbow colors from the large town! You and the other unicorns are trying to collect the rainbow’s colors again so the rest of the unicorns can enjoy the colorful sky. But beware, the other unicorns trying to help will also collect their colors and get to their unicorn palace faster than others...

The game begins with the player playing the red unicorn, then continues to go around the circle clockwise.

Each time a full circle has ended, every player must turn over their energy card simultaneously (at one time). The energy card flipped up says the amount of spaces a player will be able to move during their turn. A player moves on the colors of a rainbow. Once a player has jumped along all the colors of the rainbow, they stop on a cloud and collect their color from the rainbow they just finished, leaving a gap. While jumping along the colors without gaps is only one energy, jumping over a gap in a rainbow costs two energy from an energy card. A player can collect an upgrade when they have landed on their colored cloud (their unicorn palace). The game ends when a player has upgraded their piece at least one time and collected at least six of their own colors.

I chose the unicorn and rainbow theme because it allowed me to use the mechanics I wanted to use to make the game more interesting. Also, it incorporated a lot of happiness so the people who play my game can be both competitive and happy.

The game mechanics I used were point to point movement and simultaneous action selection. The point to point movement mechanic was used for players to move from cloud to cloud with rainbows, which are connecting the clouds together. The simultaneous action selection is used during the beginning of each round. This is when each player turns over their energy card from the top of the pile all at once.

Players win the game by upgrading their player piece at least once and has collected six or more of their own color from the rainbow.

The thing that makes my game special is the unicorns. The board of my game includes many rainbows that unicorns fly on to move. My game makes people happy, but also competitive at the same time. Which is a perfect combination for a board game.
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13. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Mythoancient Conquest by C.Y.

An unknown disturbance in the fourth dimension has occurred, and the world has gone back to prehistory. As the common people of this time do their simple daily tasks, the Gods are busy at war. These Gods, however, are powerful rulers from the future. Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan, and more have come back to life with new special abilities. Their only intents: to the conquer the world. Only YOU can discover these powers, assist a God in claiming the world, and determine who truly is supreme!

The objective is to conquer as much terrain as you can, in the form of terrain tiles.

There are 2 phases of play to the game: World Creation and World Domination. On the first phase, players place terrain tiles to construct a modular world for which to conquer. They draw tiles each turn and have some limits as for the dimensions and amount of placement for the board. On the second phase, players try to claim as much of the board as they can. On each of the turns, players can choose to expend Energy, Resources, or Health to: Buy Walls, Doors & Keys, and Portals; Move Spaces; Claim Spaces; Declare War; Trade; or Use Powers. Buying. Every round, one energy and one resources is given to every player.

I chose this theme to weave just a little bit of education into an advanced strategy game. The superpowers of the individual rulers are based on the person’s real life strengths. The descriptions on the backsides of characters describes the ruler and helps teach a little bit of history.

This game includes many mechanics, and for some games, not all may be used. For the first phase, there is the modular board, which players create using the individual tiles. For the second phase, the mechanics are more diverse. Players can choose to use the Trading mechanic to gain more of something. The Action Point Allowance of this game has 6 options. Territory Control determines who wins. Resource Management allows you to make decisions on what to buy.

The game ends when all of the Terrain Tiles have been conquered (shown by a marking tile). All players should then count up their individual amount of tiles. Whoever has the most wins. Ties will be broken by counting up who has the most amount of Resources and Energy between the contenders; the one with the most wins. I tried to add some additional mechanics wherever I could to give more possibilities to players, and makes the gameplay and strategy more complex.

The immense strategy, unique theme, and tad of education combine to make an enjoyable gaming experience for all players.
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14. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Cats and Lasers by C.O.

You are a cat alien that is thirsty for conquest through space! Now you must have Earth. Unbeknownst, your three other enemy colonies that also want to invade and conquer Earth!

On a player’s turn, they can: move a cat, move a colony piece,shoot a laser, buy a laser, use a blinding starlight and buy a blinding starlight. To move into an inner orbit to get closer to earth, you go halfway around the orbit until you’re aligned with the opposite homestead. Throwing binding starlight or a laser can up your chances of winning while also risking your chances of winning. This is because when you are in the dark blue orbit and anyone uses a laser a blinding starlight will be added and if any one is aligned with a blinding starlight will be shot back five spaces.

I choose this theme because I think having a space themed game is interesting and fun and also having regular animals and turn them into something spectacular. It balances sci-fi, dexterity, and absolute awesomeness.

Game Mechanics: Action point allowance

The game is won and ended when the first player gets to Earth first.

My game is awesome because it balances sci-fi, dexterity, and absolute fierceness. There aren’t many space-themed games out there including which how this game is set up and design. Instead of having only black and space, I added a pop of color. Additionally, there are decision making elements that may bite you back in the future. This game is going to make you say, ‘gosh darnit I wish I didn’t make that decision?’
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15. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Missouri
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Warring States by A. R. S.

You are one of the states of China in the year of 475 where war has just broke out between you and your rivals you must build up your nation so you can defeat your rivals.

There are 12 rounds in the game each round you have a trade step, a worker placement step, a pudduchen step, a war step, and a trade and a build (on turn 4 8 12 haverst)

I really got the idea when I was playing a lot the trade and building games but the thing I noticed was most were in Europe.

These are the mechanics I used worker placement, card management, trade, and resources management.

The game ends after 12 rounds and the player with the most points wins.

When all of this comes together and the game is finished, I really think it is how you play the game and how it is played with mystery and secrets.
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16. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Road to Riches! by D. J.

Your family has been poor for generations, and no one is taking action to change that, until one day I came across a poster. “DJ Company’s CEO Retiring! They are looking for the next CEO! *Note* Must have a Company!” I thought “Hmm... this just might be a turning point for our family! I’m gonna apply! First, lets prepare to build our company!” and this is how my Road to Riches starts.

First, there are a total of 15 Actions that is allowed to be taken in a single round. During those times, you can Move a space, or Buy something. Even if you buy 10 things at once, it still counts as 1 action if you buy it at once. On a player’s turn, they can Move, Buy, Do lottery, etc. After each round, you pay 1000 to the Money Pack. This is like paying the mansion rental fee.
*Note* You Can Disable other players from buying something that round by buying all of it.
*GamePlay Tip* Buy for 500, sell for higher price at Selling place!

The reason why I chose this theme because I like money. I just wanted to try to make a game out of a topic I really like about MONEY MONEY MONEY

*Press Your Luck - Lottery system. Pay amount you want to bet, and roll dice. If total is 13 or higher, its 2x the money. If you get 12-10, you get money back. Total of 3 tries per round.
*Role Playing - You are a person that is poor, trying to get money.
*Simulation - Simulating a poor person, taking chance to become rich.
How do players win and how does the game end?
Players can win after round 20, when at least 1 Person has a company. If there is only 1 player with a company, that player wins. If there is more than 1 player with a company, the player with more money left over wins. If there is No player with a company, then the person with the most money wins. The game ends at round 20.

My game is pretty awesome and amazing because everyone in my class said my game wouldn’t be good but I still kept working on it no matter what they said. Basically, this board game I worked on has my persistence glued on to it.
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17. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Honey Rush by J.D.

You are a clan of honey badgers who are trying to get rich of the vast amounts of honey of Honung isle. Will you be the badger to get rich or be left there picking up the scraps?

Players can summon badgers, fight enemy badgers, or mine honey. You get six action points a turn to use the cards in your hand or to move. Fighting consists of using your two fight cards in your hand and playing war with them. When you mine honey you put it into your hand and you get the number of points on on underside of the chip.

I chose this theme because honey badgers do not care if I make a game about them.

Grid movement, You move around on a grid
Hand Management, You have to use the cards in your hands
Action point allowance, You get 6 action points.

The game ends when someone gets 30 points. This person wins.

My game is AMAZING because honey badger don’t care.
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18. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Snakes on a Train by N.P.

You are agent 008 (sorry, 007 was taken) of the Mice Bureau of Investigation. Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to infiltrate a subway containing officers of 6 different snake agencies of varying levels of training; from the easy to beat Yellow Rat snakes to the devastating Black Mambas.

The objective of this game is to pickpocket as many snakes as possible to gain points and become the highest ranking agent!

On a turn, a player will move around the train and pickpocket snakes, but there will be some obstacles! To pickpocket a snake, roll a d10 and, based on the outcome, you could pickpocket them, or get caught. A player gets 5 actions in a turn. At the end of the turn, each player moves the train 1 track space on the separate train track board.

I chose this theme for two reasons. The first reason is that I could name this game Snakes on a Train. The other reason is that I like trains and pickpocketing, although I prefer “stickpocketing,” where you stick foreign objects in people’s pockets.

Mechanics: Variable Player Powers (each player chooses a different agent), Dice Rolling (to determine whether you pickpocketed successfully), Point-To-Point Movement (moving around the board), Action Point Allowance (each player gets 5 actions per turn).

The game ends when the train reaches the end of the track board, a second board that marks the track. The winner is the person who has the most snake points.

My game is unique in its own way, both through the theme and the pickpocketing mechanic. It is fun to play by both kids, who will enjoy the simple gameplay, and adults, who will love the strategy of the game.
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19. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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St. Louis
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Pangea Pizza by E.L.


You are the best of the best in pizza delivery service. Your task now is to deliver pizza all around the ancient landmass of pangea. The objective of the game is to collect the most money before all the recipes are complete.

On your turn you will first either place an ingredient cube on your pizza crust or move your vehicle chip the amount of spaces required. You can also place a special cube.

I chose a pizza theme because pizza is my favorite food and delivering pizza makes for an exciting game. It also is a real life situation that has real life conflicts.

Tile placement is one of the game mechanics used in Pangea Pizza. You use this mechanic to place ingredients on your pizza crusts. Another mechanic used is hex and counter. This is used to move vehicles to the different delivery stations.

The game ends when all the pizza recipes are completed. And to win the game, you must finish with the most money.

Growing up one of my favorite hobbies was playing board games. Never in my life would I have imagined I could design one yet actually make it. I think that that is what makes my game so special. From writing the reals to coloring in the board, I really feel as if I accomplished something.
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20. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Missouri
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Sacred Mountain by J. S. C.


You are an honorable Japanese warrior having the 17th annual decline of Mt. Fuji, but this year the volcano goddess is angry because she’s had to put up with the all the stomping and loud noises of the racing. So she put spirit guardians and began a volcanic eruption. Now the warriors must outrun the lava and guardians while collecting gold. You’re trying to have the most gold at the end of the race

The first player is determined by the youngest player. Then play resumes clockwise. On a your turn you can trade one card with another player before you play any cards (optional). Next play one or two cards. Then exchange cards for gold (see third table). Lastly (optional) draw cards up to five (or more if you bought a power-up). After move the lava up two spaces, but only if you’re the last player.

The reason I chose this theme was because I am interested in Japanese culture and Mt. Fuji is my favorite mountain (besides Mt. Kilimanjaro).

Game Mechanics and how you use them: Grid movement, Variable Player Powers

When 3 of 4 players get to the finish or when someone gets 25 gold (if there are 4 players).

My game is awesome and amazing because I did something most people can’t.
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21. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Boo! by R.S.

You are a ghost in the Tower of London. One of your ghost friends has challenged you to scare the most people. Win by floating around the board, scaring people, collecting points, and avoiding the video cameras all before the Tower closes up for the day (13 rounds are over). During their turn, players can put down cards that give them the option to do many things, including moving their ghost, moving a person, or scaring a person. They can also trade in cards. Once players have moved towards the outer parts of the board, they will encounter security cameras. These rotate every round and limit where players can move. However, they can be (cheated) with Saved by the Bole cards, which enable you to move to/ stay on spaces that are made (unplayable on) by them.

I don’t really know why I chose this theme. It was probably because paranormal things are pretty interesting, and it provided a clear objective for the game.

I used hand management and action point allowance. These two mechanics are used when the players are moving around the board and scaring people. The game ends after 13 rounds are over. The person with the most points wins.

My game is awesome and amazing because game design is not the type of thing that I am good at, but I managed to make a pretty decent game anyway. Plus, you can never go wrong with ghosts.
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22. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Pofrrathu by M.W.

Each player is a civilization of robots which survives by mining for radioactive ores. These robots compete to collect as many ores as possible in a dangerous mine filled with guardians and unstable support. By the end of the game, the player who has the most collected ores by the end of the game wins!

At the beginning of the game, the players select their character cards which will determine: Which ores will give them bonuses, what their character powers are, and what their explosion configurations are. During each turn, a player can send out a robot, move, and mine. (Movement can be prolonged by trading in a mined ore). Throughout the mine are Guardian Robots which chase and attack the players. These Guardian Robots can be destroyed by Attack Robots, which are created by spending uranium. When players who have mined ores are captured by Guardian Robots, they explode, making an area of the board inaccessible. Watch out, though: if a player is forced into an inaccessible area by a Guardian Robot, they will explode themselves, increasing the unmineable spaces!

My theme is radioactive robot miners. I think this theme fits my mechanics well: chit pull to determine the kinds of ores obtained, area movement and control works well for a mine. (Also, if I had human miners the explosions would be more… morbid…)

The game mechanics I used are: Chit pull, which is used to determine which ores are found and when the mining has caused disaster. Area Control is used when players mine ores from the board and explode sections of the mine. Area movement is used as players move their robots around the mine and are chased by Guardian Robots. Simultaneous action selection is used when players decide in what order and to what extent they will use their mining and movement turns.

Players win by having the most points (obtained from ores) by the end of the game, which is when there are no more unmined or accessible mining spaces left on the board. Spaces are considered inaccessible when they are surrounded by explosions and/or mine collapses.

My game is awesome and amazing because just when you think you are safe, and can mine peacefully without being disturbed, BAM! Someone, possibly yourself, has been trapped under collapsed rubble or captured by a Guardian. It won’t take long for the next player to be chased into the wasteland, causing them to explode, triggering a chain reaction of DESTRUCTION. The players must rush to collect as many ores as possible while they are still there!
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23. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Missouri
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Space Settlers by D.C.

It is the dawn of the commercial space age, and you are an architect looking to design one of the first private luxury cruisers. Make the best ship you can and then pitch it against the dangers of the frigid void.

On their turns, players either build their craft (in Phase 1) or defend it against whatever the event deck throws at them (in Phase 2). Money buys the players rooms, while action points put those rooms to use by rotating them

Space is interesting to me and I didn’t know what else to do for my theme as I actually wanted to make an abstract game.

Game Mechanics: Event decks (make Phase 2 more interesting), modular board (connecting pieces of paper (how the ship is built)

Players win by having the most final peace points, which are earned by getting in and completing peace talks with aliens (through the event deck).

In case of a tie, whoever has the most money added to their final peace points wins.

In my opinion, my game is interesting, as it is very unique, and according to Madame Mercury’s extensive knowledge on board games, there is nothing like it.

P.S.
I apologize for the lack of legibility in my picture.
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24. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
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Capture Castle by Z.M.

In this game you are trapped in a castle and the only way out is to slay the monster guarding the door, to do this you must capture the points around the board until you have enough power to defeat Jahn (the guard at the door).

On a player's turn there are many action he can take he can use action points to move, buy spells, use spells, open doors around the map, capture points, or attack Jahn.

I chose the theme of magic and myths because I enjoy being in that sort of world. It is a world of endless possibilities so it makes for a good theme seeing as you can do pretty much anything with it.

Game Mechanics and how you use them: Action points, you can use action points to move, buy spells, use spells,
open doors around the map, capture points, or attack Jahn. Area Movement, you may use action points to move around as you please.

My game has no set time limit and ends only when the overlord of all, Jahn, is defeated. The victor is determined by whoever has the most points captured when Jahn is defeated the team who has slain him can steal a capture point from an opposing player if needed.

My game is awesome and amazing because it has flexible rules providing for many ways to do things. The game has different spells and ratios every time so it give replayability. Also capturing points provides for buffs every game.

My first board prototype was inspired by the 5 realms of Termina in the Majora’s Mask game the realms are as follows. Woodfall, Great Bay, Snowhead, Ikana Valley, and Clock Town. The middle capture point was modeled after clock town, the side to after Ikana Valley and Woodfall, and finally the top two after Great Bay and Snowhead.
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25. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:2332]
Kathleen Mercury
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Train Thief by M.L.

Train thief is about earning cargo boxes and trying to be the richest. However, there are spies in cargo boxes, and sometimes, they steal the cargo!

Players generally are on a race to get to the middle and back to their stations without having their cargo taken. There are two types of moves in this game; major and minor. There are four minor moves and one major move per turn. A player use major moves to play actions such as check cargo box (for spy), hire new spy (take a spy and put it into a new box), or take out a new train from that player’s station. You can move with minor moves, or simply trade your minor moves for a major move. One major move is two minor moves, and the same as reversed. There is a pile of cargo to the side of the board, and players randomly pull a couple pieces of cargo that may contain spies in them and put them in the middle of the board. Then, all players try to get the cargo and bring it back- hopefully without a spy! Players interact when they accidentally go on the same route. Once this happens, a player must take another route that branches off the main route. If that is not available, your trains have crashed. You cannot move your trains, and they remain on the board.

I really wanted to create a game with thieves. I mean, non player controlled thieves. It was a challenge to “program’ the spies and make them fit, but I managed and I like the end product.

One mechanic in this game is chit pull. This is used when players take cargo boxes from a pile of mixed cargo boxes and put them in the middle where another player chooses one randomly. This makes playing random, and uses chit pull.

The game ends when each player has at least five cargo boxes in their stations. Points are on the bottom of the cargo boxes. Basically, whoever has the most points and the best cargo wins at the end of the game.

This game is fun to play because you never know when you will have a spy and when you won’t. However, that also goes for the other players and the competition is on for the five cargo boxes you need! This game is simple to set up, and can easily be changed for shorter gameplay. all in all, it has more upsides than downsides!
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