Thursday, October 1, 2015

More Design Decisions and More Playtesting

Playtesting at Brainstorm in Chicago.
Photo Matt Wirth
I have to admit I've been neglecting the blog. It isn't that Broken Contract has taken a backseat. Indeed, it's actually been the primary focus of my "free time." Here is a breakdown of what has been going on:

The Rulebook

Over the summer I made the decision to extract all of the background information from the rulebook to keep it concise and useful to those who use rule sets for their own purposes. This gives us the flexibility that as the rules evolve, the background and scenarios can still maintain their relevance. It also means that I can put the compact rule set anywhere I want, making them more accessible to people.

Broken Contract Rule Book PDF 9/3/15

FerrumSky Episode I

This means that all of that background and the scenarios need to go somewhere. For now the new home is in the FerrumSky book which presents all of the background information composed regarding the iron mining and manufacture corporation, FerrumSky. All of the characters written/depicted for the setting, along with a collection of scenarios and special rules will all go within this module/supplement/book.

Scenarios and Characters

The last two months I have done a lot of playtesting both solo and with various people in Milwaukee and Chicago. These sessions have inspired a lot of minor changes. Many of the stats and special rules of the characters have been reworked. Scenarios have been roughly composed and some have been kept and others have been played, analyzed, and discarded. It's definitely been a process. The last couple of days I've been solo playing the first 3 mission campaign over and over again to fine tune the campaign rules and make sure that it's fun and replayable with different results.

3D Prints from Prodos.

The Models

After accumulating this pile of 3D printed parts they were shipped off to Valiant for casting. As of last week Valiant contacted me letting me know that silicon masters of all of these parts have been made and the master molds and first casts should be coming soon. From left to right the above models are Will Kollis - the Breaker Crew Leader, Micha Donelly, Overseer Billins (with alternate arm and head) and the Prod Gen-Mod with alternate arm. All of these models were part of the Kickstarter and represent what I believe to be a step forward for the quality and presentation of Broken Contract.

A mix of pro printed components and proxies.

The Game Components

Over the last couple months Sam has been finishing up the components needed to play the game. Here you can see completed designs for the Character Dashboard, Initiative Deck, and Action/Wound chits. He's currently working on the Equipment Cards to replace these as well as proper Character Stat Cards. That will leave Special Ability Cards to be the final piece of the puzzle as far as player interface with their dashboard.

Board Sections and the Making Mine Scenery Series

One of the big draws to the Broken Contract Design Blog was the Making Mine Scenery series of how-to articles. Well, I've been looking at printing options and the printed board sections are looking like they are going to be 8"x8", not 8"x10" like the mine sections that I've built. What does that mean? Well, I'll probably have to reboot the series and start over! The techniques will still be the same, but I'm going to want to rebuild everything to the correct size, so we will begin again in the near future.

That's all the latest, If you have any questions don't hesitate to comment. Thank you for following along.

-Nick

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