Friday 20 September 2019

Building our own board game with "Board Games to Create and Play" by Kevan Davis and Viviane Schwarz (Pavilion Children's Books)

By now you'll probably have seen our "Book of the Week" review of "Board Games to Create and Play" by Kevan Davis and Viviane Schwarz, just out from Pavilion Children's Books.

We take our board gaming very seriously indeed at ReadItDaddy Towers, as you'll probably know from regular visits to the blog. So we couldn't wait to start building our own game using this fabulous book.

We'd had several ideas. C wanted to do something with cute kittens in it but we couldn't think of a central theme. For ages we'd joked about doing a videogame that was based around being stuck in a supermarket on a saturday, frustrated that everyone else moves slower than us, or just sits there gossiping right in front of the aisle or section we want to grab our food from. So there was the seed of an idea and "AULDIES" (formerly known as PIDL) was born.

First we started off with a very basic rule set:

Roughly sketching the rule set (with C's awesome picture of a speeding granny!)
We used one of Kevan and Viviane's board designs, slightly adapted to feature the sort of stuff we find in our local supermarket and drew up a basic version in pencil first...

PIDL board complete with roughly sketched game pieces
Doing things quickly, we built the prototype game and couldn't wait to get on and play it.

Basically, you throw two dice - the big white one to move your grannies, and the black one to move your game character. The idea is to move around the board and pick up your shopping. But the grannies can block you, and if they land on you - or you land on them - they will send you all the way back to the Chemist to pick up their prescriptions!

At any time the player can 'bank' all their items by moving through the checkout squares, effectively finishing the game but the player with the most points for their shopping isn't necessarily the player with the most items, so there are tempting bonus items to grab, and the 'gamble' of going back into the supermarket for items you've forgotten, or just to try and out-score the other player!

So we played it - and surprisingly we laughed a lot, and it worked as a game concept!

Ooh an unbearably smug victor!

(Needless to say, C won!)

I'd probably say building the game took around an hour, the rule set about half an hour - and then the next day we went in to try and build the "Proper" coloured version of the game with player pieces, shopping and a colourful board design from C.

Drawing characters and shopping items. MAN that was hard!

C getting busy colouring in and designing the board
The final result - a game that C described as "The Best Board Game She's Ever Played!" and hours of fun for both of us. Really can't recommend this book highly enough, it's absolutely perfect! So here's the nearly finished article (we still haven't come up with a name and a logo but if any board game companies out there want to back us, we're all ears, hah!)

The final game - as busy, crazy and chaotic as a real supermarket full of old ladies!

"Board Games to Create and Play" by Kevan Davis and Viviane Schwarz is out now, published by Pavilion Children's Books (kindly supplied for review)