Play Jump Gate on BoardGameArena.com!

Jump Gate listed at BGAOver the weekend, BoardGameArena — a major play-for-free online boardgaming site — just added Jump Gate to their line-up!

This very exciting thing has been a couple of years in the making. Shortly after BGA opened up their developer tools, I was contacted by Charles Mead (“ChazM” on BGA) about working on a Jump Gate implementation on the platform. Over time, a number of real-life-change-related pauses, and additional involvement from Fabien and Greg of the BGA team, Charles & Fabien were able to get it packaged and ready for primetime!

I’m very grateful for their work, and super excited about having this available at BGA! 😀 If you play there, look for me — I’m always open for a game — and let me know your thoughts on the game.

Jump Gate at BGA

Free Game: Crunch Time QB!

Crunch Time QB!Earlier this year, the Building the Game Podcast held a bit of an informal game design contest. The challenge was to design a dice-based game about American football that could be played with people hanging out in a sports bar.

My attempt at the challenged ended up with a light, fast-playing press-your-luck game called “Crunch Time QB!”

You can download the rules here: Crunch Time QB! (48)

You will need to supply your down dice (10D6) and method for tracking scores (pencil/paper work fine).

Enjoy! 🙂

Runways, Holidays and Protospiel Magic

"Days of Discovery" at Protospiel-MadisonI’m out of runway to get Days of Discovery ready for a launch this year. I have a number of reasons for this (for example, my Patience & Priorities post still fits). Mainly, the game is still not where I would like it to be.

I’ve made significant improvements to it by stripping it back to the main set of cards and getting rid of a lot of the extra fluff I had added in the prior couple of versions. So, it’s better, but it still feels a bit flat in multi-player games. So, I’ll keep developing and look for an early 2017 launch at this point. (see more on this below)

Expect to see more game development type posts on this one, along with more of the story mode type posts that will give a bit more background to the Land of Danger storyline.

In the meantime, we are verging onto the holiday season. So, I’d like to remind everyone of my silly little stocking-stuffer game that I made last year: Santa’s Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam. Continue reading

Mailing List Sign-Up Drive & Game Give-Away

Mailing List Sign-Up Drive

NOTE: The give-away has been completed. Congratulations to Tony Miller for winning the games!

I’m building a formal mailing list through MailChimp. You can signup here: Matt Worden Games Mailing List

My plans are to use this list to send monthly newsletter-style updates and special announcements, such as Kickstarter project launches and other game release announcements.

As an additional nudge, I will be giving away a couple games to one randomly-selected person from the mailing list on Thursday, September 1st. The entry process is simple: Be signed-up on the mailing list by 7 a.m. on that morning to be eligible for the random drawing. (Update: This give-away has been completed.)

The winner of the random drawing will receive two games:

  1. Days of Discovery - First Draft Box Cover RenderA preview prototype of Days of Discovery
  2. A choice of either Jump Gate (3rd Edition) or Dicey Curves (Deluxe Edition)

Jump Gate, 3rd Edition, Box in Shrinkwrap from TheGameCrafter.com Dicey Curves, Deluxe Edition, 3D Box Render, March 2014

I’m Headed to GenCon Indy 2016

Matt Demoing at GenCon 2015Once again, I will be attending the giganto gaming con that is GenCon Indy! And, unlike other years, I won’t be scheduled wall-to-wall demoing my games! 🙂 That means you’ll be able to find me to hang out and play games and such.

I’ll be driving down on Thursday, picking up a friend along the way, and leaving my Thursday evening open for picking up my badge and tickets, and finding folks to do the aforementioned hanging out and playing games with. For the next two days after that, here’s what my schedule looks like right now: Continue reading

What’s on Tap for 2016

Welcome to 2016!Wow — 2015 flew by very fast!

After the weird 2014 I had (last time I reference that, I promise 😉 ), I originally intended for 2015 to get back on track and catch up to all the plans I had made for the previous year … but it didn’t quite work out that way. After the failed Kickstarter project for Aether Magic, a number of other real-life, non-game-related things took priority. Days of Discovery — while solid as a solo-game from the start — took longer to get the multi-player game right, and I simply ran out of time to make everything happen that I wanted to last year.

So, the approach at the start of this year is going to be a little different. I’m only going to worry about one thing at a time, and move forward with whatever is next on the list after that. So, my “plans” at this point do not go very far past February … and I seem to be perfectly okay with that. 😉

Here is what I have on the list: Continue reading

First Written Review of “Santas Little Helpers” & a Green Gift Bag

All components in the Green Gift Bag of "Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam"This past weekend, my family participated in a local holiday boutique that runs every year at our middle school to raise money for our school district’s band programs.

Students trying out Santa's Little Helpers at a Holiday Boutique - Nov. 2015Knowing we were going to have a table at the boutique was the original spark for what lead to Santa’s Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam. I purposely wanted to make a fun, easy-to-learn game that might be interesting to folks that don’t normally play board games as a hobby. Admittedly, this is outside of the market I normally target … but I figured Jump Gate and Dicey Curves wouldn’t do as well as a cute little Santa-and-Elves game at this particular boutique. Once I got the game down, I liked it a lot and decided to make it a general for-sale item in addition to having it at the boutique.

NEW Green Gift Bag of "Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam" - $10With that said, I have about a dozen sets of the game left over now. I packaged these in a spiffy, green, drawstring bag instead of in the tuck box you normally get when you order from TGC. They also cost 33% less — just $10/copy — and since I already have them on-hand, I can send them out as soon as you order them. Click here to buy one of these Green Gift Bags of Santa’s Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam for just $10.

Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam - Review by TheFamilyGamers.comAlso, the first written review of the game has been posted at TheFamilyGamers.com … and they really liked it, exactly for what it is. Click on the link to check out what they wrote! 🙂

Santa’s Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam

Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam - Title GraphicsIntroducing my newest game — available now at TheGameCrafter.com for just $14.99!

Santa’s Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam is a lighthearted look at a little-known aspect to life as an elf at the North Pole. Late every autumn, colorful cube-shaped fruits magically appear on the ice and snow surrounding Santa’s Workshop. The elves call them “ice cubes” and Santa makes a pretty wicked jam out of them. Every elf wants some!

Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam - All ComponentsTo get the biggest helping, you need to gather up sets of the ice cubes and get them to the Workshop. If you’re the fastest at gathering and delivering enough sets, you win! The game is easy to learn and plays very fast — about 30 minutes per game. It combines a randomized map with tile-laying and pick-up-and-deliver mechanics wrapped in a jolly holiday theme … it’s a perfect stocking-stuffer for your family- and casual-gamer friends. (Click here for full rules.)

For those who like a little extra fun, there’s a FREE COLORING PAGE (click here) of Kristijan Hranisavljevic’s title illustration available for download. Add your colors to it and send it back to me — I’ll share your work on this website and my social media feeds!

Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam - Box Image Santa's Little Helpers and the Ice Cube Jam - Back of Box

My Game Design Duct Tape: Multi-Use Cards

Examples of multi-use cardsWhile I try to do something different in each game I design, and I try to let the theme of the game drive what mechanisms are used, I do have some common tendencies … and most obvious of them is my love of multi-use cards.

As a player, I love to have options, flexibility, room for creativity to use whatever my current resources are. The ability to combine things or otherwise have a choice in what a specific card is used for gives the strategy-crunching part of my brain a lot of enjoyment.

As a designer, I love the way multi-use cards can expand a design without much, if any, increase in number of components. There’s usually a bit more math and/or spreadsheet work that’s needed to make everything come together right … but that’s a trade-off I’ll take most times. Continue reading

Tapping the Brakes on Days of Discovery … Again

Tales of Danger #1: Days of Discovery - Early Box Cover Mock-up, July 2015A couple of months ago, it seemed like I had a nicely-prepared path to get Days of Discovery — the first game in the Tales of Danger series — all buttoned-up and ready for a mid-August Kickstarter. The original play mode — the solo game — was honed and really solid, the multi-player mode was coming along nicely, and I had a good checklist of various logistical and promotional things to be done. The path looked clear.

The plan was to go to GenCon and use my booth times and other game-showing opportunities to walk folks through the game and promote the up-coming Kickstarter.

But, it turns out, I’m not actually ready … so, I’m pushing the launch date back a couple months … again. The new date is Tuesday, October 6th [update: October 27th] (which is really my last window to run a KS this year before the holiday season hits).

Mainly, the multi-player version of the game still needs a lot of work. It’s still too long and the interactions aren’t quite right. I have a couple different approaches that I’d like to take some time and experiment with. So, a couple more months are in order.

Raimundo's Ships at SeaThis extra time will also give me time to work out some of the manufacturing and promotional things I was rushing or skipping over, trying to put the ducks in a row by August. It also allows me to relax and enjoy myself a bit more at GenCon this coming weekend.

So, please continue to stay tuned. This ship will eventually sail!