Making Games – Towns

photo (1)We have a pretty good collection of board and card games at home. There are the usual Monopoly, Stratego, Clue Jr, Settlers of Catan. There are also some less common – Forbidden Island (possibly my favorite), Tsuro of the Sea, a few Russian card games by Банда Умников and some others.

One thing I noticed is that after playing existing games, the Rocket Boy is more likely to try inventing and designing a game of his own. His games tend to be very complex with lots of different cards and rules. They are definitely more Catan than Ghost Blitz.

For example, this is his latest game called Towns, played by any number of people.

Each person gets a game board with some roads and empty building lots. Then players take turns getting game tokens. On each token there’s a number from 1 to 10. You use these to buy houses, factories, hotels and sandwich shops for your Town. Once you have a certain number of houses, you automatically get a library. The tricky part is how you pay for the real estate – by combining the tokens you have (using any arithmetic operations you can think of) to create a number with a certain property.

Rocket Boy’s original idea was that even numbers would pay for houses and odd numbers – for factories. But it didn’t test too well. So he came up with a very complicated plan – even numbers for houses, square numbers for factories, prime numbers for hotels. He ran out of steam after that. The first person to fill in all the empty lots on the board wins.

Do your kids create their own games?

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