Arthro-Party!

My son always has a bunch of game ideas marinating inside his head. The other night he came up with ideas for a card game and I took notes as fast as he could talk.

His concept originally was based on the game “Ant War” where you use food resources to buy stuff and grow your colony. He thought someone should make a spider version. (This was after watching a Magic School Bus video on spiders) Then as we talked, it morphed into a battle card game with arthropods, still retaining the food as currency idea. Some arthropods collect food, some steal things, and some paralyze or kill other arthropods. Hazards can wipe out your food supply or kill your guys. He had items that did different things as well. The game ends using a mechanic from the game “Gubs”. During regular play, there are letter cards mixed into the deck. When you have drawn all the letters, the game immediately ends. In this version, the letters spell “PARTY”. The player with the most arthropod points still in play wins. The Golden Tarantula is special and worth 5 points, all others are worth 1 point.

Yesterday, we play tested his idea using spare playing cards and Sharpies. We built the decks and played through an entire game. We learned a great deal and decided to get rid of items and any arthropods that used them. We also whittled down the food supply as it is constantly “spent” and can be recycled by shuffling. We also lowered the number of really strong arthropods. There were some that kinda ruled the game (I am looking at you, millipede). In the end, we purposefully got it down to 108 cards (2 full decks) for printing reasons.

After a few more rounds of testing, he will decide what kind of art is going to go on these and create the cards using Gimp. The decks will be printed on real playing cards through Artscow.

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