Expansions come in many varieties and those variations can be described in various ways. While researching my article on Hobby Game Trends 2000-2014, I had to decide whether or not to include expansions in my data. This decision caused me to consider the question, “What is an expansion?” One categorization criterion is what the expansion does to the original game – how it expands the game. Keeping in tune with game descriptions, I’ve categorized expansions into 4 X categories.
Categories and Classifications
A very common and expected next step in a market analysis is to classify and categorize the data to make comparisons.
At a Glance
Breaking down the release data by game category seems like a relatively simple process, but it gets sticky quickly.
For the record, my complete title for this game mechanic to makeover is “Dice in a Cup,” but for brevity sake, I will often just call it “n Dice” where n is the number of dice rolled. The working title of the game that tests the mechanics in this makeover is called “Challenge Dice.”
Of the game design and development resources I have highlighted so far, this is the first that is a person rather than a brand. This is done with no intended slight to those highlighted previously; there are real people behind each one of them and in all cases a very small number of people (usually 2-4) behind each. What makes this case special is when I set out to write up this mention, I was at a loss to describe it in any way other than as Jamey himself.
As stated in my other articles looking forward through 2015, I am not so interested in making New Years’ resolutions as setting some loose goals for the year. Keeping in step with 2014 here are a few:
The New Year is an obvious time for reflection, so please excuse the navel-gazing.
This was the first year that I had any specific goals related to game design that I set out to achieve. Sure, there were several times in my life that I tinkered with game design and even constructed substantial prototypes, but I built those to play with friends or to train my mind. In December 2013 I decided that I was going to make an honest attempt at completing some of my game designs. By “completing” I meant making multiple thorough ideation-design-build-test iterations with the intent of developing a quality, marketable game. Having been supportive of several games on Kickstarter by that time, the power of possibility had grown enough that I was going to make the investment. By that time I had a couple new game ideas and one that I had iterated through 3 or 4 prototypes.
I love a game with theme, but a theme without a mechanic is a story, not a game. I also love logic problems, but a logic problem without a mechanic is a puzzle. A game is many things, but ultimately what makes it a game is its mechanic(s) and what makes a good game is good mechanics. (OK. Maybe overstated, but this is the Mechanics section, right!?)
The easiest statement about what Opie Games has planned for 2015 is, “more of what we did in 2014.” Obviously, generally I would like to do everything better, too. A few, more exact, 2015 objectives are:
Although I was working on my current game designs much earlier and planning for my foray into the industry, I essentially started Opie Games in January 2014 so it seems natural (in addition to the new year) to review what has been accomplished through Opie Games in 2014 now. As identified on the About page, “Opie Games is the home of table top game designs and musings by John Parker and links to resources that may be helpful to the beginning designer or the person with an affinity toward table top games. Hopefully, you find the content here interesting.”