Monday, June 21, 2010

Wizards of Kaitron

First post at the new web site, and just to keep everyone guessing, I'm not even going to talk about computer gaming for once. Instead, it's time to show off the new OTB game that my son and I put together.

Wizards of Kaitron is a tile game that's at least vaguely like Magic-the-Gathering: you and your opponent both have a main character (a Wizard here), and your MCs each have some amount of HP, and your goal is to do damage to that guy until he dies. Poof, you win.

The novel part is, Kaitron uses the topology of playing tiles. To attack the enemy wizard you have to work your way over there, with your tiles and his fighting as you go. Each tile has its own health and special abilities, like being able to rotate in place or heal neighbor tiles and so on.

Each tile has different attributes, one for each side. There are four elemental attributes (earth, air, fire, water) and four ethereal attributes (light, dark, spirit, death). And there's a rock-paper-scissors-like system where this-beats-that to decide which tile wins in a given combat.

The mechanics of playing a game are a little more cumbersome than I'd like, but it's definitely turned out to be an enjoyable game, with a lot of strategy and a little luck involved.

My 13-year-old son and I plotted out the game a few days ago and play-tested using carboard tiles to see how it would work. That led to some rule tweaks, following which I ran out to Home Depot and a craft store. I picked up a set of 36 2"x2" kitchen tiles, some stick-on felt for backing, self-adhesive clear inkjet labels and a bunch of colored rhinestones. And poof, we've got some lovely playing tiles.

Before moving to this site, my blog was "Game Programming 101"--but I've renamed it to "Game Development 101" since the "programming" part has been getting too much attention. Developing a game is more than just writing lines of code, even if you're working on a well-understood game like checkers. The rename is to help me remember that. :)


  1. This is the coolest, shiniest game ever.

  2. We'll bring it when we come for the holidays. And you'll be entranced at how quickly Isaac can kick everyone's ass with it, even without throwing the tiles.