Pinball Board Game

2-4 player board game
Components:

Quad fold board

20 Decks of 5-10 cards

5 D6’s

4 player markers

Description:

I wanted to design a board game that revolved around Pinball.  My hope was to capture the feeling and play of pinball while making a game that felt strategic at the same time.

In this game players vie to build the best pinball machine combinations and then try to score points while playing pinball on that machine.

The board is setup as a pinball machine with bumpers and spinners and gyro’s which all contain a point value.  Those points are scored when players are able to “hit” them with their ball. These spots on the board also contain arrows that point to where the ball will head to next in it’s path of bouncing.  Players need to optimize this path by adding new pieces onto the machine.

There are 10 slots (numbered 3-12) on the board that can be filled with new pieces (cards) that will allow players to score more points, change the direction of the ball and so on.

The primary mechanic of the game is deck building.  Players all start with the same deck of 14 cards.

Each turn players draw 7 cards and must determine how to play them into the slots on the board.  Some of the cards in their decks will help to augment their shots as they shoot the pinballs onto the board.

After placing their cards, players roll 5 D6’s and assign the numbers however they like to slots on the board, this including adding totals of 1 or more dice.  They can divide the dice however they like into separate pinballs.

For example: I rolled 6, 5, 3, 2, 2.

I assigned them as follows: 3, 4, 11

That means that my pinball will launch 3 times onto the field.  Once for each number.

Alternatively, I could have assigned them like this: 3, 4, 5, 6.

This would give me 4 pinballs.

The starting decks that players get are very limited and need to be made better.  To do this players may spend some of the points they earn during the pinball phase and buy new cards.  Up to 3 new cards may be bought per turn and are put into your discard.  Once your draw pile is empty your discard is shuffled back into it.

Players must balance the points they will spend to buy better cards with the points they need to win the game.  These points come from the same pool so they must be managed carefully.

The player who first reaches 100,000 points is the winner.

-Jason

All ideas presented on this here are the property of the Building the Game Podcast.

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