More gaming news from the Taskmaster

Hello all, and thanks for coming back to Move Rate 20 Games!

Not much to report from the business side if things this week. Legal stuff still in the pipeline, art work still being drawn, playtesting continuing, Mr. P still answering to my every beck and call! (Always a pleasure to be of service, Mr.R.)

So for this week I have been contemplating ‘flavor’ and gaming. We are striving to have a game environment that is rich in its history and pageantry. We want our world to feel alive. I want it filled with interesting characters and quirky personalities.

Now, coming from a D&D background, I can see where I developed this need, but I am not always this way. When I am playing Magic for instance, the background flavor of the plane I am battling in means very little to me. The same goes for games like ThunderStone and Ascension. I love the gameplay but ignore the flavor.

The games that I do play and enjoy the background environment tend to be in universes that were flushed out in different mediums. Games like X-Wing or Legendary Aliens would not be as enjoyable for me without all the rich history that came out of their franchises. Of course, the great gameplay in these games is essential, no matter how good the flavor, if the gameplay is lacking then I will not enjoy the game.

So I guess my question to you, the great internet masses, is this: How much does flavor matter to you in a game?

Until next time….stay frosty!

Steve R

Playtesting News From Our Beloved Taskmaster

Greetings and salutations, and thanks for coming back to Move Rate 20 Games!

So…what’s new this week you ask? Well, let’s see what I can disclose out to the public without incurring the wrath of our legal department (and their endless supply of >REDACTED<)!

We continue to move forward with playtesting on our first release called >REDACTED< (What really? We can’t have the name in print yet! Oh well…) We have made a few small last minute rule changes and add-ons and are now making sure that they improve the gameplay through playtesting. We have also made a few more tweaks to the awesome art that is being drawn up just for us, as well as some card re-designing that will make >REDACTED< (oops, sorry!) look as good as it plays!

Speaking of playtesting …we would like to start taking our first (but not last!) game on the road for some playtesting. So if anyone out there reading this missive has a favorite haunt that may want to participate, then please feel free to drop us a line via out “contact us” link. Maybe you can be added to the growing ranks of play-testers that have tried >REDACTED< at the very least you’ll be able to find out what the game’s name is!

Until next time….keep >REDACTED<!

Steve R

Playing Cards: The 2nd Game mechanic

Chinese Playing cardsBelieved to first being invented by the Chinese, then traveling to the Middle East via India, playing cards may be the second oldest gaming tool in the world after dice. Despite the centuries and the adaptations and changes made to the playing deck by many cultures two things have remained fairly constant, they are Suits and Face Cards.

The Faces of Playing Cards

In early decks the face cards were all male with the Knight, the Prince and the King. It was the French who shuffled things up by added the Queen card to the mix, demoting the Prince and putting the Knight out of business. There are many stories a to whom the face cards represent and it’s hard to know which ones are true, chances are the face card represent personas unique to each culture and there is no one true origin storey to the identities of the Jack, Queen and King of each suit.

Each culture throughout history has modified the deck to suit its own needs, the biggest change to the european deck was after the French Revolution. Back when the aristocracy ruled, the highest valued card in the deck was the King; however, that didn’t sit well in a post-revolutionary France where “liberty, equality and fraternity” were the new slogan, So they took the “1” card, already called the Ace, and made it the trump card of the deck. The idea actually went back to the original Chinese deck, that had both a one card and a trump called the “Dragon” card.

The popularity and widespread acceptance of the playing card deck was largely due to its portability and wide variety of games of skill and chance that could be played with it. The first historic record of playing cards in in western Europe is in the 14th century, when the king of Spain outlawed them. Chances are they had entered a Spanish port via a Mediterranean merchant and caught on significantly enough to gain royal notice. Clearly his ban did not stifle the popularity of playing cards, and probably, as in most cases where something is banned, just fueled the desire to have them.

So what about the Tarot Deck?

The interesting variant is the Tarot deck. I’ve seen some articles that claim that the playing cards are descended from these tools of divination, and while I admit that my research is far from extensive, I believe that Tarot cards came either after Playing cards hit Europe or the Arab countries or may have been developed on a parallel track.From the standpoint of a travelling fortune teller, cards could be more easily hidden from the representatives of the church who would likely not look kindly on a person partaking in such activity.They would also be less obvious than reading the bones of dead animals or searching through their innards for portance of the future.

Regardless Playing cards introduced more of an aspect of skill into games of chance than dice allowed for. Calculating odds, misleading strategies and bluffing added more challenge to the games and an almost limitless variations to established games.

 

Greetings from the Taskmaster!

Hello all, and welcome again to Move Rate 20 Games!

I have finally gotten around to writing an introductory hello here at our website (who knew that designing games would be so time-consuming!). If you have been here before, thanks for coming back…and be sure to spread the word about us to all your gaming friends. For those of you who are visiting for the very first time, WELCOME! I hope all of you stay with us for the ride, as we have what seems to be a challenging and exciting rest of the year ahead.

We have not one, but two games on the drawing board even as we speak (but don’t ask for details yet, more news will be forthcoming!) and I may even have one more surprise on the way for my gaming partners in crime! We have signed on some artists do some design work for us…and let me tell you, the stuff I saw looks fantastic (Hey, Mr. P, think we could get some sample pics up here soon?).

We have also signed on a writer to work with Rob L to begin writing some background flavor for the fantastic world that we have created for our games.

Playtesting continues even as I write this, meetings are being held, plans drawn up, paperwork being signed….well, you get the idea….things are very busy here at Move Rate 20 Games!

So stay with us for the ride folks…it may get a little bumpy, but it will sure be fun!

Steve R

 

(By your command Mr. R! Here are the rough sketches we received from Chris Bennet. -Mr. P)

King of the Palamire FactionGeneral of the Palamire FactionThe widowed Mother of King Palamire

 

The Benefits of Playing Card Games For Kids

Is There Still a Place for Board & Card Games For Kids in the Modern Home?

The Wall Street Journal On-line posted a video that covered the benefits of teaching your kids to play card games at a young age; and while they focus on traditional card games, I couldn’t agree more.

In recent years card games have fallen out of favor with the modern family as our personal devices pull us away from the social interaction that a lower tech diversion can provide. When I was a kid I have great memories of playing Rook and Miles Bourne with my family on camping trips and New Year’s Eve, and clearly as an inspiring game designer I feel strongly that card and board games have a place in the home. I also agree that such games help develop social and life skills that a developing child will find incredibly valuable, including how to win and lose gracefully, how to read people and how to think strategically,

The first game we are developing is something that definitely could be a family game and we will have more details about it as we get closer to a release date. It has math, symbol recognition, tactics and long term strategy. But in game you could find to play with your family, either on-line or at your local gaming store there’s Munchkin, Love Letters, the Adventure Time card game, or the old stand by of Uno. For those with older teenagers there’s King of Tokyo, Settlers of Catan and many more.

There are a lot of options available to you as you set out to plan a family game night, the challenge is keeping it happening so it has a chance to become a tradition in your home.

 

Wil Wheaton Announces Name of Latest RPG Game Web Series

Riding the success of his web series “Table Top” on the Geek and Sundry YouTube network, Wil Wheaton has revealed move info about his latest project; an RPG game based web series. Where Table Top had a group of comedians and internet celebrities playing a board or card game each episode, his new show will have a steady cast of players going through a campaign of his design.

Not the first web series about RPG Game play.

Aaron Yonda & Matt Sloan RGP game
Aaron Yonda (image from the Beer and Board Games website

It will be interesting to see how they will edit the show to keep both the comedy and the story line intact. The creators of Beer and Board Games, Matt Sloan and Aaron Yonda have had success introducing “Rated RPG”, a web series that breaks up a one RPG game session into several episodes. As well as Community TV show creator Dan Harmon’s podcast “Harmontown” which started

Matt Sloan RPG game
Matt Sloan (image from the Beer and Board Games website

devoting the last 20 to 40 minutes of each episode to playing complete RPG campaigns, first D&D and now Shadowrun. Not to mention the the PAX rebroadcasts of the “Acquisitions Inc.” D&D campaign that has been a major event at each PAX show and gets hundreds of thousands of views.  So it seems there is a demand for this type of show where people actually playing a RPG game is the subject, but it needs to be funny and entertaining. People sitting around doing mundane tasks probably won’t cut it. It’ll be interesting to see Wil’s entry into this growing genre of entertainment.  That said, I’m interested to see what this new web series will shape up to be, getting more exposure to different RPG game styles is always good for both players and GMs, even better if it gives you a good laugh.

 

 

 

 

Play-test night at Rivendell Books & Games

Both Card Games Get Tested

Last night (4/1/15) we met in Rivendell’s Game room to test both card games we are developing. “Master of Spies” and “Project: Lightning Sword”

The classic 1st ed D&D image watches us no matter what we play.
The classic 1st ed D&D image watches us no matter what we play.
Mike and Rob run the demo of P:LS to get Mike's feedback on the description of the game.
Mike and Rob run the demo of P:LS to get Mike’s feedback on the description of the game.
Rob & Mike play-testing Project: Lightning Sword (working title).
Rob & Mike play-testing Project: Lightning Sword (working title).
Neil, Steve R. and Steve P. (taking the picture) play-test Master of Spies.
Neil, Steve R. and Steve P. (taking the picture) play-test Master of Spies.
The P:LS demo test starts to heat up.
The P:LS demo test starts to heat up.
Our feedback form that e use to collect comment and input from our volunteer ply0testers.
Our feedback form that we use to collect comment and input from our volunteer play-testers.

 

If you enjoy board games, card games, role-playing games or interesting pop culture collectables be sure to visit:

Rivendell Books & Games in Rehoboth
224 Winthrop St (Rt 44) Rehoboth, Massachusetts

 

We Need Artists!

We Need Artists!

We are still looking for artists to develop a working relationship with for several upcoming projects! Please share this if you know any talented, underused artist. We will compensate them for their work. I am a strong believer in not taking advantage of artists. Please email us a link to any sample of on-line portfolio you have and we can discuss rates. Thank you.
For more info email info@MoverRate20.com

Games are made here