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Development of Heroes of Tenefyr


Heroes of Tenefyr went through a lot of small changes during the development. Here are 3 of those changes:

1. The Boss track
The Boss track keeps track of the time you have left before the boss attacks. Whenever you leave a dungeon, the boss token moves one step forward on the track. Whenever you lose a fight, it moves two steps forward, cutting down the time you have to prepare.

In the early stages of development, there was no boss track, and losing a fight meant losing the game. That quickly turned out to be much too harsh, so I started thinking about other penalties for losing and that's how the boss track came to be.

2. The Dungeons
During setup of the game, you use Dungeon cards to create 10 random dungeons. Dungeon cards all have a level ranging from 1 to 5 and each level gets 2 dungeons.

When I first came up with the idea of the game, I already had 10 dungeons in mind, but they would range from level 1 to level 10. After the first few playtests with a partially finished prototype, I felt that the progression through the dungeons lacked an element of choice. You would start at level 1, move on to level 2, then 3, etc. Also, the power difference between the highest and lowest Dungeon cards would have been too great to easily balance.

So, I decided to have 2 dungeons of each level, so players will have more choice. Now you can look at the dungeon rewards and pick the dungeon that you think will benefit you most, or if one of the dungeons has an easier enemy on top, you might go for that one.

3. Drawing cards
Here's the basic turn structure in the game:
At the start of your turn, you draw 3 cards. Then, you can discard all of those cards and draw a new hand of 3 cards. You can do this as many times as you want. After the draw step, you play all your cards and then the next player takes a turn.

I went through several different turn structures and drawing mechanics before ending up with what I have now.

At one point, drawing and discarding worked the same, but everyone revealed their cards together. This made it harder to decide if you wanted to keep your hand or not. This felt too random because everyone was just guessing what the others would do.

I also experimented with drawing your 3 cards one by one, and having the option to stop or discard and redraw at any point. This felt like you had too much control. Discarding your hand should feel like a difficult choice at times and this version made it too easy.

There have been other changes at different points in development, but I might talk about those in another article.

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