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We're Sinking - Dev Diary #10

When Life Gives You Blizzards...

First an Update on Some Real-Life Stuff

Hey Everyone, March was super crazy, I playtested We're Sinking close to 20 times over two weekends during 3 playtesting events. Also.... I did a thing!

Yep, I got married! Snow in March in Virginia isn't unheard of, but a blizzard is highly irregular this time of year. Especially when the week leading up was 60 to 70 degrees with clear skies. Then suddenly, Saturday (day of the wedding), 20 degrees and 100% chance of precipitation, rain overnight and turning into 4 inches of snow all day with periodic gale-force winds. It was not ideal for us or our guests driving and flying in from out of town. It felt like a disaster waiting to happen, either no one would be able to get to the venue or we would all get snowed in and stuck at the venue. Instead, our wedding turned out to be better than I could have ever imagined. We had already planned for an indoor ceremony and reception but a blizzard had never occurred to us. Despite the frigid conditions, the snow was perfect enough for some beautiful vistas but not enough to prevent any of our guests from getting to and from the venue safely. It was an incredibly stressful week leading up to it but it ended up being one of the best days of my life. Spending it with the light of my life, and all our family and friends by our side was truly a magical event.

The whole experience had me thinking about how life can throw all sorts of curveballs your way. No matter what contingency plans you may have planned for, sometimes things are just out of your control. You have to accept that and not stress the little things. When the contingency plans fall through, all you can do is make the best of it and take it all in, knowing you tried your best.

Back To We're Sinking

Sorry for the long life story. Okay, what's new with We're Sinking??? Quite a bit actually.

3D Ship Update

I have drawn up some new concepts for the ship design. I hope to start physically building it out next month.

New Game Board

I've updated the board to be more streamlined, I removed the turn structure guide, moved the enemy card off and to the side, and moved the ship to the center. I also added labels to accommodate each deck of cards and card column.

New Enemy Cards and Dice

After last weekends playtesting I knew I needed to balance the Shark and Skullsair abilities a bit. But I also needed to make the stakes a little higher. I had too many games where folks never rolled much for the enemy making it take longer to sink down a level. I have now added Water and Breach icons to each of the Special enemy dice. This might end up being too harsh. After a few playtests I will see about scaling it back to having only one. Either Water or Breach instead of both.

New First Mate Token

The First mate token is no longer just a hat. It now serves a much more important role. It provides the first player of each round with the turn structure to follow along with. Giving each player a role in moving the game forward each turn.

New Cannons and Firing Mechanic

Previously, players had to discard item cards to roll a single cannon die. This was starting to feel wrong since the odds of getting a hit are against the players. It can feel really bad if you sacrifice your good cards just to get a pair of blanks. Instead, I've decided to try a new mechanic. Players who do the Fire action can now roll ALL dice that are currently active in the Fire Column without spending any items. They may then spend up to two item cards to reroll any dice. This hopefully will give players the feeling of more control over their dice. However, this does potentially give the odds back in the player's favor, given that they are potentially rolling more dice and also allowed to reroll up to two times. So to balance this out, I did tweak the dice odds a bit. Before, the cannon dice had one hit, one double hit, and four blanks. Now the default cannon dice only have one single hit. No more double hits. That being said I am also introducing two more cannon types. The Double Shot and the Triple Shot. These will increase the hit odds by adding two hits and three hits respectively. And because these cannons are better, they also are harder to repair when they become disabled. To keep things simple the Double Shot will require two patches and the Triple Shot will require 3. The Single Shot (Default Cannon) will still require 1 patch like before.

New Item Card abilities

I've updated some of the items to be more powerful. I won't go into them in detail because they may change again after the next playtest. Perhaps I'll go into more detail with changes next month.

Thanks to everyone who came out to Kastle Games, Labyrinth Games and Puzzles, and WashingCon this month and playtested We're Sinking! A lot of these changes happened thanks to your incredible feedback.

March Raffle

Regarding the March BitterSweet Raffle, a winner will be picked on April 2nd, the winner will be emailed via me so I can get their mailing info. There's still some time to enter to win!

Next Month:

  • More Playtesting

  • Prepping for UnPub2022 happening in May

  • Taking a break for the Honeymoon




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