- Emperical Zendo, a semi-competitive game for 3-8 players based on the icehouse game Zendo. Vaguely based on rants by Bayesians.
- Logic Potions, a competitive game about deductive logic and making new rules for 2-4 players. Actual gameplay quickly gets complicated as players add more rules about brewing potions. Inspired by “Imaginary Go Fish” and “Emperical Zendo”.
- Deadly Education RPG, a traditional pen+paper RPG game based on Naomi Novik’s “Deadly Education”. Reading the book is not required.
All three are untested as of posting.
See also: List of all games
I’ve added a central games page https://za3k.com/mygames.md to my website, with all the games I designed. The new games:
Loot Boxes. Untested. Easy storytelling game for 2-4 players. The players have an inventory of absurd random items, and must solve challenges using each item in turn.
Stupid Russia. Tested. Party game for 10+ people. Each player is a spy director at the Stupid KGB, and must report as many codenames to the Inspector as possible, swapping secret information with other players. The players had fun, especially adopting bad accents. The rules were too hard to understand, and it was too much work and no fun for me as the Inspector. Overall I’d just recommend Stupid Conspiracies instead.
Stupid Conspiracies. Untested. Party Game for 8+ people. Each player tries to recruit the others into their conspiracy, for about half an hour. It’s a re-write of the core idea in Stupid Russia. Overall, big party games are just too hard for me to organize.
I also playtested “No this cannot be! I AM INVINCIBLE!”. It ran about 45 minutes prep (not fun) and 45 minutes playtime, which was the main problem. Overall the play time was fun. I rewrote it to have MUCH easier prep, and for the game to be generally easier. I also re-wrote the rules of “Ninjas Ninjas Ninjas” without a playtest. I don’t think it will ever be too popular but it has a soft spot for me.
I’ve written a few simple storytelling games or RPGs lately. They’re all under two pages of rules, and currently they’re all untested (first test is Monday!).
- Ultimate Archwizards vs the Dark Lord Game for 3-6 players including one GM. Guessing 2-4 hours. Imagine the final episode of a fight anime–everyone is mega-level powered. Relatively goofy. Suitable for beginner players, would work with a beginner GM too. Designed with zero prep in mind.
- No, this cannot be! I AM INVINCIBLE! Game for 2-8 players, no GM. More fun with 4+. Guessing 30 minutes. Heroes want to kill Villains, Villains also want to be killed. Villains therefore send wave after slightly harder wave of enemies at the Heroes to level them up. Designed to be comfortable for complete beginners, while letting expert storytellers play in the same group. About half storytelling, half stats. Some gameplay is probably similar to Munchkin, but I haven’t really played Munchkin. There’s a little prep at the start for Villains (5 minutes), almost none for Heroes. The only one of the three that needs playtesting to balance.
- Ninjas Ninjas Ninjas! Game for 3 players exactly, no GM. Not for beginners. Guessing 5-30 minutes once you learn the rules (up to you). Frantically fast storytelling, challenges are 30-60 seconds each. There are several roles including the main “narrator”, which players swap often. The main goal is to show how cool your ninja team is, but you do also complete your mission. Can be played with nothing, not even paper. Could be expanded to work with 4 or 5 players, but would need more work.
Will post my two spy games in a bit once I type them up!
https://www.rpgsolo.com/ has a table for resolving yes/no questions, in turn taken from FU RPG. Roll a die:
- Yes, and…
- Yes, but…
- No, but…
- No, and…
I listen at the door. Do I hear anything? (I determine the odds are 50/50 so I click the “50/50” button in the Get Answer section and I get back the following.)
(Now it’s up to me to determine what that means. Since it says “and” that means I got some kind of bonus. So I am going to interpret that to mean that from the sounds I am hearing I have received some extra information. So I type or say to myself),
I hear one person in the room. (Now I ask my next question.) Is the door locked?
(The answer is no but it’s not a total loss. I interpret what that means then type the following),
The door seems weak enough that I can probably kick it open.
So we’ve gotten a base system for telling stories. We then added the following:
- Whenever you roll a result, roll TWICE. In one universe, you get one result. In the other universe, you get another result. (With accompanying description). If you have more than three universes lying around, discard down to three. All actions/questions are for a particular universe declared by the players.
- (addendum) Actually, roll two dice: only split the universe if the second die comes up “1” or “2”. Otherwise, answer the question normally. This speeds things up a bit.
It was pretty fun in practice. I recommend using a text file over paper, since you’re going to do a lot of copy-paste. We had more fun with no GM than with a GM. No firm result yet on sandbox-worldbuilding vs players in scenarios; both seemed all right.