Prototype: The Monster and Doors

The Monster and Doors is a game where two players from different hometowns try to find an escape route from the Monster who is ready to go on a hangry wrath. There are three doors that can be used to escape the map. These doors can be opened with 3 matches of a key.

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(Photo shown: Version 1 – Rough draft; unplayed)

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(Photo shown: Version 2)

I played my game 5 different times but will be discussing the last three times I played it. I made the most significant changes during these games.

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(Photo shown: Version 3)

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(Photo shown: Card piles)

I played version 3 of my map with a member of a club that I am involved in. His name is Benny. Our game started with 3 lives each. We used dimes as our player pieces since the board was on the smaller side. We had 3 separate card piles for the key pieces, CHEST and WILD space. These three piles of cards were set aside of the map. I let Benny go first. He rolled 6 on his first roll and moved that many spaces from the P2-Hometown space. After 3 of his turns, he lands on a CHEST space, pulls a card from the CHEST pile, and the card instructs him to take a PIECE card. On my turn, I landed on a WILD space that instructed me to trade cards with the opposing player. (I hadn’t thought about what to do in a situation where a player has no cards to trade.) We continued to play but noticed that the game wasn’t progressing since there was only one copy of each of the two keys in the PIECE pile and we were constantly trading PIECE cards without reaching 3 matches. After 20 minutes of going back and forth, I decided to trade a card with him that would allow for him to open one of the doors. He opened the door and came across the Monster’s dungeon door which had no effect. We then continued to circle around the board until I decided to stop the game because I was getting bored of my own game.

At the end of this game, I decided to add new rules and made some changes. The changes I made were:

  • include 2 copies of each key in the PIECE pile
  • include junk cards in the PIECE pile
  • start each player with 3 PIECE cards in case of a trade situation early in the game
  • separate PIECE pile equally for each CHEST space
  • Magic Mountains sends you back to your start point instead of sending you diagonal from your space as it shows in the photo above.
  • the Monster’s Dungeon door takes full number of lives that the player starts with
  • starting lives changed from 3 to 5 lives; the Monster’s Dungeon door takes 5 lives

 

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(Photo shown: Version 4)

Version 4 of my map is just a bigger version of version 3. I played this version in class with Sukmi. I added one new rule the night before to make the game a little more interesting and fasten the speed. The new rule allowed the player to choose 1-3 dice to roll. This gives the player a chance to make big space moves or little space moves depending on how far across the board they were trying to get to. Instead of my original PIECE cards, I substituted it with playing cards since it was difficult for Sukmi to understand. For each door card, there was a King, an Ace, or a Joker. The playing cards contained Kings, Aces, and other irrelevant cards to substitute for the junk cards. The same rules applied but we would have to have 3 Kings or 3 Aces instead of the pictures I drew on the original PIECE cards. We played about 4 rounds and I started to notice there were too many white spaces and I didn’t have an action for rolling doubles. After our 6th roll, Sukmi started asking in-depth questions about the game. She mentioned that it was a quick kill for the Monster to take all 5 lives that you start with when opening the Monster’s Dungeon door. We never got through the whole game.

The changes I made after this game were:

  • passing your hometown will give you one life
  • when rolling 3 dice, a pair counts as 0 *does not apply to 2 dice roll
  • if all 3 dice match, the player can only move the amount on one die
  • readable PIECE cards
  • 3 more WILD spaces

 

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(Photo shown: Set up of game #5)

I played the fifth time with my sister. We each rolled one die to see who would start. I got the highest roll so I started the game. Twenty minutes into the game, I started to realize that there wasn’t enough action happening for playing 20 minutes in. I was forced to add 3 more WILD spaces since we were hardly landing on those spaces. I also added 5 CHEST cards into the CHEST pile because there weren’t enough advantages when landing on the CHEST space. We started to realize that we were getting cards, but also having to put them back into the chest. After I added the 5 chest cards, the game immediately sped up. My sister ended up with 5 key PIECE cards out of the 7 that she had. She was also able to land on the WILD space multiple times to get 2 “Block Monster Hit” card. While she was winning with the PIECE cards, I was building up my life stack (in pennies). I also noticed that rolling 3 dice was more valuable for moving short distances because it is easy to roll a pair and have the third die be 1-3. Forty minutes in, she was able to unlock 2 doors– one that did not match her key, and the Monster’s Dungeon door. She used her block hit card and the doors got shuffled and put back onto the door spaces. Her next 3 rolls she was able to unlock a door that matched her keys. This game took about an hour to play.

The changes I have made are:

  • more WILD spaces
  • 5 additional CHEST cards
  • still debating on taking out the 3 dice rule

 

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(Photo shown: My sister’s PIECE cards at the peak of the game.)

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