Blog for Stephanie Bryant, a writer with too many hobbies and not enough time.

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Solo Playtesting for Monster Under the Bed

The next game I’m working on is called Monster Under the Bed. It’s a cooperative card game for families– about age 8 and up, I think. The basic premise is “you are preparing to fight off the monster under the bed.” Everyone needs to have at least 1 good dream worth about 9 points or more in order for the players to win. There are three phases, with the monster deck reshuffling between phases.

I playtested it by myself today at lunch. Dealt out three players’ hands and the monster deck. Here are my notes:

  • Monster deck is too large. Needs to be 1/2 the size (it was 180 cards, needs to be ~90).
  • Player decks have too many actions and not enough items, at least for the third phase.
  • Phase 3 needs actions– I seem to have forgotten to put any in, so every card is a Nightmare.
  • Need to be more clear about things like who wins in a tie (the Monster), and whether you can choose not to take a monster Okay Thought card or not. I need to playtest this in both directions– I think making it optional means players get to make more strategic decisions, but it’s going to result in stagnating Dream cards towards the end of the first phase.

I have a few more notes on this, of course, but these are the bare-bones. I am going to retool parts of it and try to play it with my family in a couple of days.

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