Alex Coulombe’s Masterpiece: Masterplan!Posted: December 19, 2011
So if you’ve looked at Alex’s website, you may have read about a game he designed called Masterplan. Specifics aside, it’s interesting how Alex and I have been leap-frogging through the field of board game design. First he invents a game, then I find TGC, then he publishes a game, then I enter a contest, then he wins a contest. It’s especially interesting how he continually beats me to the important parts like publishing and winning.
Either way, I have played Masterplan and I love it. I’ll leave actual game explanations to Alex, but I will say that it is played on small, triangular boards representing different plots of lands. Originally Alex published this game using the printers at school and some chipboard, so the shapes available to him were limited only by his own patience. When we found TGC, we both thought it would be great to get a version of Masterplan printed. Problem was that triangular boards required the end-user to cut up the printed boards, and also led to a lot of wasted space and money. But about a week ago JT announced Hex Cards, and everything changed. I really quickly pumped out a concept for using the hex cards to simulate triangles. Take a look.
It is a bit much to take in, especially without any context, but here’s a basic explanation:
The top right represents a blank board in the old game. It is made up of six triangles, each representing a different type of land (Clockwise from top: mountain, desert, swamp, plains, forest, brownfield). Below that image is what an empty board would look like made from the hex pieces. Technically, all the information is retained. Legibility is the only problem. Compounding this is the left side of the image. This shows the boards with the buildings, currently conceived of as token chips, placed on each possible building plot.
Again, this was a quick sketch (I sketch with AutoCAD and Live Paint. Don’t judge me…). Alex and I have been cooling down from Shima, but in the next couple of weeks we may see fit to bring this project out from the back-burner. Until then, I still need to 1.1 my released games, and new games are still possible. Next time: an introduction to my international collaboration. Hint: Mon Dieu!