Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Post Metatopia Thoughts

Did Metatopia last week. Finally had time to sit down and collect my thoughts about the experience.

1. It's amazing and if you design an RPG or a Board/Card Game then you need to make it to this convention.  It's got a knowledgeable dedicated group of designers and players who are ready and willing to give you a lot of excellent feedback. You're going to get a lot of unvarnished, critical, much needed opinions. The kind that most people wish they had.

You know those times when you bemoan the fact that you can't find playtesters? If you play your game several times here it's quite possibly the equivalent of fifteen indifferent test groups that you managed to cobble together. If you have a lot of products that you'd like to get ready, then this is the place for it. Make your way here, you will not be disappointed.

2. The people who show up for this are great, and the people who run it are spectacular. It was a well run machine despite the fact that this was an area that wasn't all that far from the coast after Sandy hit. The hotel staff was a pleasure to deal with, and they were acting like a small shelter for people to come in out of the cold. Classy acts all around.

3. The panels were fun, and well done. They were willing to go at some tough topics, and for the most part stayed on the surface level but then again it's a panel in a one hour slot so it might not have all the time that it needs. However, there's a lot of stuff going on and it will only get better from this point in time.

Now, specifically about my games.

AIR went beautifully. Not to say that the game didn't have any flaws, it did. Some large gaping ones that were exposed by the playtesting. But these flaws were less holes and more like shallow ruts, things that can be easily filled in. People really enjoyed all the elements, they just didn't feel like the game didn't bring any of it together.  Hopefully the changes address that.

I'm changing how the Downward Spiral works, it's not drastic but it's now a group thing rather than an individual thing. The keywords are also unique to each character, and are things that the players are going to invoke on themselves.

The air content is going to be in the entire station rather than just in one area, and it's going to be visible to all so that they can see what's going on.

PvP situations were sorted out, so now that works and could use some testing.

FIXER was a rather huge success. It needed some tweaking of the rules to get it moving, and I'm going to need to go over the math on the cards, but the core rules are pretty damned solid. A few people were interested and I'm going to be playtesting and prototyping for the next little while to get it to a better spot before I send it out.

BANK JOB, was a beautiful horrible mess. No tension, no panic, no anything. The idea is still good, they just didn't pan out. I think I really need to sit back and rethink that one. I have a couple of thoughts but it's going to require some time and I'll probably get to it after FIXER is more done.

1 comment:

Paul Thornton said...

Sadly, being in the UK, it's a struggle to make it to this kind of thing. If there are and British based card/board game designers looking for something similar, I've been told stabcon is worth a look. Never been myself, but a couple of mates who have told me it'd be a great opportunity to get some impartial play tests of my card game.

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