Today was mostly schoolish. In order to design your own game, you have to know an awful lot about what kinds of games there are, how they work (or don't), and what sorts of enjoyment people get out of them. We went through all that, at length. For illustrative purposes, Anna and Brian and I brought several games, some of which are very easy to learn and play. So we broke up the morning with things like Zombie Dice™, Pigmania™, and Love Letter™.
I showed them my unfinished design books on the Role-Playing Game I worked on for years, just to show them how crazy this process can get. And I brought over some hand-painted miniatures from the house and explained how they were used in gaming.
Of all the sorts of games there are, the class was least familiar with Role-Playing Games (only TC had ever played one) and Miniatures Games (all were blank on the concept). And while all of them knew about Tiles Games, none had ever played one. They understood and had a lot of experience with Physical Games and Sports, Card Games, Dice Games, Electronic Games, Party Games, and Board Games.
After lunch, we zeroed in on just what these guys are going to have to do to design their own game. It's a big project to take on. Next time we get together, we are inviting all their buds to come join in, because we have to do a lot of play-testing of games in general -- and their games in particular.
We made better progress today than I thought we would, because we were so few in number. I had allowed for nine Scouts to do all this very intensive stuff. That doesn't make the job each of these boys has in front of him any easier, but it means we can go as fast as they can go, instead of worrying quite so much about managing a large herd of guys trying to get play-testing time. We finished with 45 minutes to go, so Anna and Brian taught Jarrod and Andrew the game Legendary™.
My baby wrote me a letter
Playing the surprisingly manly game of Love Letter
Everything from Frost Giant to Flying Pig
Every gaming session has at least one such distraction