New Card Prototypes: Two Games

Published on 2018-09-21

We received prototype decks for my yearbook game and a card version of A Green And Narrow Bed. Prototyping with cards is really inexpensive and worthwhile for me, because actually handling the functional materials is often inspirational. 

The Yearbook Game

I love this collection of games and activities and play it with anyone and everyone I meet. Recently I've played it with Steve's son Henry, a bunch of larpers, and a furry enthusiast. The cards look good, although it breaks my heart that I can't use some of the oldest playtest images. These are all in the public domain but some of the protected ones are so great...

Here's the complete set, currently:

..and here are my two favorites. Is Perparim an exchange student? Is he secretly cool? Why is Brenda the only member of French club, and why does she not care about any of this nonsense?

 One thing I learned is that the card backs need to be uniform for some of the mini-games, so I'll include a "faculty" indication on the recto side and leave verso consistent across all cards. I knew this the instant I got the prototype!

A Green and Narrow Bed

The cards look great and, I think, are the way to go with this game. Here's the whole set:

There are four informational prompts, each with six options, for creating your character. Here's one combo:

You get these 2-3 word prompts to pick from on verso, and then more detailed truths reveal themselves on the recto side. For example this is what we know about this particular widow: 

You are a recent immigrant, the mail order bride of a dissolute whoremonger who died over a gambling squabble. After your husband was killed you were assaulted and left for dead. With no one and nothing, far from home, you drifted into prostitution, feeling entirely abandoned by God.

Donnie Pence, the man who ruined you (and, on a lesser note, killed your husband), is currently visiting Kansas City, Missouri to sample the various pleasures to be had there. Pence has made a life for himself as a prosperous merchant. He's married and has "numberless fat little children."

So that's nice. Lots of variability and, hopefully, replayability. You may have sussed out that this is a very dark game.

The rules are on a dozen cards, with images on the verso you can choose from after building your character.

So that's been exciting to see and handle and learn from. 

I thought you might like to see these prototypes! What do you think?

--Jason