35: Classics

35: Classics

Which classical game would you love to redesign, or use as the basis for a new game? What would you change?

 

 

I would absolutely love to redesign some of the old classics such as Sorry or Shoots and Ladders. I think those games have had their time and I believe that using them as a basis to a modern game that has an element of strategy could be a great way to get people who aren’t gamers into the hobby.

Helaina Cappel

I’ve been learning to play Cribbage recently, and have been impressed at just how pure a game it is. While I could never have the level of hubris required to even think I could Cribbage But Better, I have been wondering if the mechanisms that drive this classic could be implemented into something wider – maybe as a phase in a larger game, gathering resources based around the points scored in a hand… I dunno. There’s always something ticking away in the back of my mind, whether it gets used is another matter!

Michael Fox

I’ve made a string of ‘classic games remade for gamers’Scuttle! is Cuttle, Meow! is Mao. I’ve always thought Guess Who had such a fun core, but I’ve no idea how you’d update it for a modern hobby audience.

Peter C. Hayward

Is the Pokemon Master Trainer game considered a classic game? I had the game as a kid, but it was such a tedious game with a huge amount of dice rolling in battles and catching Pokemon so it was such a chore. I would make the Pokemon catching much more strenuous and rewarding, and battles much more strategic with type advantages and heightened suspense. I wouldn’t change the flow of getting to the Pokemon League, but the League itself was awful – Snakes and Ladders-level awful, so I’d definitely change that too.

Christopher Chung

I think those games have had their time and I believe that using them as a basis to a modern game that has an element of strategy could be a great way to get people who aren’t gamers into the hobby. — Helaina Cappel

Escape from Colditz. My grandfather escaped from Treblinka, a Holocaust-era Nazi death camp where about a million people died and fewer than 100 survived to bear witness of the horrors and atrocities perpetrated there. I’d like to tell my grandfather’s story of suffering and courage, much as Major PR Reid told his own story of escape in the original game. However, I could never force the players to play as Nazi murderers, so I would make the game fully cooperative, and modernize the mechanisms to make the game engaging to a contemporary audience.

Isaac Shalev

I love the Mancala mechanic – I think it’s a great basis for new games and a lot of fun when you use nice glass bead components.

Adrienne Ezell

I have always thought the pen and paper game “Dots and Boxes” could be the basis for a cool new game, especially in light of the current roll and write craze! There is something really satisfying about the way those chain reactions can trigger across the page. Of course, the perfect information in the game is a bit of a problem, so introducing some uncertainty and variability into how the lines were drawn would probably be my first plan of attack. Perhaps different squares could award different points or bonuses too.

Phil Walker-Harding

I don’t think there’s any classic game that I would explicitly like to re-design completely. However, I would love to have a go at updating the classic boardgame Scoop for the current atmosphere of social media, click bait, and ‘fake news’.

Sam Illingworth

Escape from Colditz…I’d like to tell my grandfather’s story of suffering and courage, much as Major PR Reid told his own story of escape in the original game. — Isaac Shalev

I’d love to redesign Settlers of Catan into a critique of Imperialism and assumed land rights (“I’ll trade you 1 smallpox blanket for 2 corn“). Or a philosophical investigation into whether land is even something that can be ‘settled’ or owned. Or maybe Settlers over such a long timescale that the practice of ownership is irrelevant and self-defeating. Or even flip it around completely, so you play the land and you own the people who (very) temporarily alight upon it. Damn, that’s good! I need to get on that…

Andrew Sheerin

Sorry, but I can’t answer this question because all the games I admire are in no need of redesigning and I don’t want to consciously use other games as the basis of new designs.

Tony Boydell

This is a common approach for me. My games Pikoko and Thrown are trick-taking card games similar to Whist or Hearts. Big Bazar is a reaction game similar to snap. Doodle Rush is inspired by Pictionary. I have an upcoming game based on Parcheesi, and another trick taking game in the works. I actually think there are germs of brilliant ideas in many of the forgotten mass-market games of the 1970s and 80s. So I love to see “retro” reviews of these games, and look for inspiration.

Adam Porter

I’ve been wanting to use Liar’s Dice as the basis for a new game for a while now. I love the game as is and think it would make a killer engine to drive a bigger game. Jay and I had an idea for a building game set in the world of Belfort where the Master Architects are trying to guess how many of each resource type are available in the warehouse. So dice faces would wood, stone, metal, gold, etc. I’d remove the player elimination from Liar’s dice and focus on rewarding people who successfully called another player’s bluff.

Sen-Foong Lim

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