As part of my New Year’s Resolutions, I decided I was going to get some work done on my own game this year and then demo it. To help me get it right, I decided that I wanted to demo it in stages, so last weekend, I demoed my movement rules. This is probably the trickiest part to get right, because I want to have a game with Newtonian physics.
To make the demo interesting, I set up an asteroid field and made the goal to get from one side of the table to the other without hitting any asteroids. Having tried it myself a few times before bringing it to the table for demoing, I knew this could be pretty challenging, but I was excited about how others might do.
Overall, it was a positive experience. I got the chance to see a lot of people wreck on their first try, then “get” the physics and make it on their second try. I got to have some very good discussions (some that I had planned for) around what constitutes a collision (flight peg, base, or true model collision), how turning and movement should work, how the ship blueprint should look (to better aid understanding of power allocation), and what should really happen when you hit an asteroid (or another ship). I also had some interesting discussions around possible mini-games; the thought being that if just movement was fun, it could be a game in its own right.
The demo really helped me tighten up some rules, and will help me prepare for my next playtesting session by preparing different components to see how they work out. My goal for next time is to have basic weapon systems ready to test, and see what Newtonian combat looks like.