Friday, April 24, 2009

The Game of Picaroons

I have an idea for a board game which could make me a million bucks, if it is worth a flip. The problem is ... I haven't finished developing it. I haven't got the bugs worked out, and I was terrible in math. The game is called Picaroons. A Picaroon is another name for a spy. I'm calling the game that because I like the name, and, because, I'd like to create a board game with spies in it; but so far, all I have is a game of checkers in which you use the flip side of the checker pieces, and you get to re-enter captured pieces in the light-colored squares, which don't ever get used. And that's as far as I've gotten. Actually, I have gotten slightly farther along than that: I bought a cheap checker set and painted the flip sides of all the checkers red, so you could tell the Picaroon side from the regular checker side. The Picaroon side, or red side, is the flip side of the checker which no one ever cares about, but me. Think of it as a game of Othello or Reversi, with Risk mixed in ... if I can get the cards to fit in somehow. Right now, all I have is twenty-four checker pieces, painted red on one side, and all the cards which one uses in a game of Risk, which I raided. On the cards are horsemen, a cannon and infantry. And there are two wild cards which have all three categories (horsemen, cannon, infantry) on one card. I'm surprised there aren't more wild cards, but maybe the further I get along in this game, that will make perfect sense. For the time being, I think I have a great idea, but I haven't got it developed yet, but using the other side of the checker pieces seems like a very logical variation, so I'm going with that. Here's the object of the game: you play a game of checkers and get captured or you capture. Every time you capture a checker piece you get to draw a card. Let's say the cards are divided into three categories: paper, rock, scissors. There are 13 of each category in Risk, that's what I have in cards, so I'm dancing around that number, more or less.

And two wildcards. The way the cards will be used is ... as you're accumulating cards after capturing your opponent's checker pieces ... you hope to get three of a kind -- three rocks, three sheets of paper or three scissors, or, a set of three, with a rock, a sheet of paper and a pair of scissors. Once you have three of a kind or a set, you can snatch one of your captured pieces from your opponent and enter it Picaroon side up onto the board in the light-colored squares. That's sort of as far as I've gotten. I know I'm going to have to take into consideration what happens if you capture a king, or your opponent captures your king, but blah, blah, blah. The end part I have worked out: The thing you want to accomplish is to get your Picaroons in the two light-colored squares in the center of the board. I've thought about the fact that both games might compete with one another, that is, while you're still playing checkers, if you have re-entered a Picaroon (flipped piece) you are also playing the Picaroons phase, so I figure on each move, if you have at least one Picaroon on the board you can move your Picaroon one space and move your regular checker pieces as you normally would. I'm thinking that Picaroons can only capture other Picaroons, and they do so by moving in an adjacent space, with rock beating scissors, scissors cutting paper, and paper wrapping the rock; except, I'm looking at water, fire and stick. Stick floats on water, water puts out fire, and fire burns stick. Whatever. What I'm thinking is you have to move the Picaroon pieces safely to the far corners, at which point you acquire a little flag, which means that piece can begin moving into the center of the board, but the only way it can move to the center squares (there are four, obviously: two light and two dark) is by rolling a pair of dice. Then the game becomes like Risk, sort of. If you catch my drift.

The trick will be to land your Picaroons in the four center squares, having to land exactly on the square with the roll of one dice or two die. For instance, you roll a four (either one dice or two dice totaling four), and that piece, the Picaroon with a little flag, can be moved onto the square. I'm thinking no one can capture a Picaroon with a flag unless you're a Picaroon with another flag on the other side, and then ... I dunno. Anyway, You roll a six and a five, say, you overshoot your target, so then you gotta roll a two or a one to come back and land exactly on the square. Boring, right? Well, then the game becomes like Risk, because you can take over the square from your opponent if water beats fire, fire burns stick and stick floats on water. You see what I mean? So, you're dealing with luck and some skill, but not a lot of skill. I'm thinking about what I could do while the Picaroons are rolling from the squares on the corners to the center of the board; in other words, will there be a checker game still going on, and is that going to be confusing. I dunno. I need to play it, but no one will play with me. I feel like Henny freaking Penny, or Ducky Lucky or whatever the hell it is ... which is the animal which wants to bake the bread, but nobody wants to help, but they all want to eat the bread after it's baked, so it's a little moral. Which has nothing to do with anything, except that's how I feel. Or Chicken Little, with the sky falling. I always get those confused.

Anyway, I'm typing this up, so I can say I have my board game copyrighted, it being in the public domain with a date on it, so that if anybody steals Picaroons or the concept, I can sue the pants offa them, even though I have never done well when it comes to legal matters. I'll come back and add more once I have beta tested what I have so far.

Peace, out.

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