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King's Court

Page history last edited by Dan Carreker (NarrativeDesigns.com) 12 years, 1 month ago



Be the first player to assemble your court by reaching the end of the game board.




2-4 players.




Game Board of 30 spaces + start

4 pawns (avitars)

A deck of standard playing cards




Place each pawn inside the start space.

Shuffle the deck






Each player selects a suit to represent them (Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs, or Spades)


Players cut for high card to determine turn order


  • TURN


On each player's turn, that player draws the top card.


If a card's suit does not match any  players' suit (in 2 or 3 player game) that card is removed from game and another card is drawn.


Player's add the card drawn to their hand, keeping its value secret from other players.


A player may play any number of cards on their turn and only on their turn




                         Numerical carrds (Ace-10) of the player's suit allows the player to move that many spaces on the board.  Aces count as 1s.


                         Numerical cards of another player's suit allows you to move that player back that many spaces.


                         Cards that would move a player (back or forth) more spaces than the board allows instead  moves them the maximum spaces allowed. 


                         Each opponent may not be moved back more than once during your turn (swapping places does not count as "moving back".)


                         Face cards (Jack, Queen, King) of your suit may be played on any opponent.


                         Face cards of any other suit may only be played on the opponent represented by that suit. 


                         Play a Jack to swap places on the board with an opponent


                         Queen allows you to look at an opponent's hand and play any one card there as if it were in your hand.


                         King forces an opponent to discard their hand.


                         When a card is played or discarded, it goes to the discard pile; when there are no more cards to draw, the discard pile is reshuffled.




                         The first player to reach or pass the 30th space wins.




Comments (4)

Leana Galiel said

at 4:09 pm on Jun 30, 2009

As I was reading through, I was wondering what the face cards would be worth, I like how you gave them separate rules. They allow players more choice in how they can affect themselves and other players. The only problem I foresee is that there are too many ways for a player to be sent back, and not enough to move forward. Not sure if it would cause too many problems or not.

Kalle Miller said

at 7:16 am on Jul 1, 2009

At first I thought this game was going to be like this: Draw a card, then play that card because you have nothing else in hand. Then I realized that "any number" includes none at all. So it's more like: Collect cards until you think you can make it, or become too afraid of face cards, then make a run for it. Not bad, but as Leana said, there might be too much going backwards.

Dan Carreker (NarrativeDesigns.com) said

at 2:32 pm on Jul 1, 2009

Yes, the basic strategy is collect vs. run but there are some things that add a little more depth. The limit (1) on how many cards that can be played on any one opponent during your turn means "defensively" you are more likely to spend cards that effect your opponent. The number of players also will affect your strategy as more players increase the chance of someone drawing your K or Q...two cards that can really hurt if you are storing up. And the player who seems to be hording cards would be a bigger target.

It does seem though there may be too much incintive to hold cards, so a mechanic to encourage taking the chance of moving forward might be needed. What about:

If a player plays a card that moves them forward (using a Jack do not count as a "move forward") they may then draw another card, and again play as many cards from their hand as they wish.

So if you horde "move" cards then you will have fewer draws than an opponent who moved every time they could. I'm not sure this gets the right balance though, so I'll think some more about it.

Dave Seidner said

at 11:28 am on Jul 2, 2009

Interesting game, Dan. Simple design with decisions each turn. Would definitely need to be playtested to what balance adjustments need to be made; whether it's incentives for moving forward or making it more difficult to move opponents backwards or some combination of the two. Also, instead of discarding suits not in the game during play, why not include that in the setup? If three player game remove one suit from the deck, if two players, remove two suits from the deck.

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