Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Titanomachia: The Next Steps

So having finally settled on a version of the rules that 'works' for some particular values of that term, and in the process of play-testing, to go with the other play-testing gigs, I now have a list of next steps that I need to do before I can either take a loan or crowd-fund a first edition box set. Actually, I have a list of next steps that I need to do before I start recruiting play-testers, because unlike a company working on selling the next edition of their game, I'm going to be play-testing something that can't be easily tested just by plucking the rules off the intarwebz; that's a feature, in that part of the design brief is for a highly physical, and hence commercial, product. The idea being that sometime in the future, approximately one or two years depending on the breaks, people should be able to buy Titanomachia box sets, and eventually expansions.

Fortunately, the playing card company Bicycle is offering custom playing cards, which I can use to build (and re-build...) the card decks that drive the action, shape the board, and set the parameters of the game. Or, at least insofar as play-testing is concerned. Actual production will need a different vendor to provide cards, or maybe not. I'm exploring the options here. The point being, however, that I'll be able to give play-testers some of the experience of the production value in the box that will be sold to end-users.

What I want in the box includes:
  • Two 'Titan' models, roughly equivalent in size to Warhammer 40,000 Space Marine Dreadnoughts, including a range of weapon options so players can customize their models, mounted on ~60mm bases.
  • Two Titan decks of System cards for the systems representable by the multi-part plastic models.
  • Two complete Strategy decks of Action cards (128 cards, or 64 each, or 4 of each Action).
  • Two complete Mission decks of Objective cards (16 cards).
  • Two complete Battlefield decks of Conditions and Terrain card (enough to cover the set of terrain provided, see below, so about 32 altogether).
  • A set of terrain, enough to cover a 2'x2' board area with 6"x6" bases. Something like 8 buildings, 8 ruins, 8 rough terrain, and 8 clear/road tiles. Maybe plastic buildings, probably card, it's a question of cost-effectiveness.
  • Two sets of markers for targets, shields, and so on.
  • A ruler or tape-measure. 
  • A rulebook.
So it's a bit of a wish-list, but I'm hoping that the combination of incredible plastic design and production exhibited by companies like the Wargames Factory, the modern capacity for printing cards and card-stock modular game-boards like in the 4th edition of the Settlers of Catan box, a lack of dice, and a minimal rulebook will make a starter set equivalent to something like Monsterpocalypse, and contain everything that two players need to play. The idea is that two players 10 years old or more will be able to play a game together lasting about an hour using all of the material virtually straight out of the box (gotta plug in system options...) and a 2'x2'  area for the battlefield-board. Essentially so it can be sold in the board-game aisle of larger stores as well as competing for wargame space in web-stores and brick-and-mortar local friendly gaming stores.

But I also need things like a graphic designer to help me put Project Phoenix-style re-design of various Titan designs, a copy-editor, a sculptor/miniature-designer, and some other odds-and-ends that I'll probably end up doing myself. I should probably see if I can buy a copy of the original Adeptus Titanicus on Ebay or something, for play-testing purposes.

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