Boardgame Design 101: Theme, Narrative & Rules

Ben Panter, Alternative Photography & Game Making

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5 Lessons (50m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Supplies

    • 3. Theme & Narrative Worksheet

    • 4. Rules Worksheet

    • 5. Conclusion & Next Steps


About This Class

You can make your game!

In this beginner's class, you'll learn what to do after you have an idea for your tabletop game. We'll take that raw idea and start putting some real meat on the bones by working through specifics of how you envision it with a Theme & Narrative Worksheet. Then we'll follow that up by thinking practically about what will need to happen for your game to work, and start writing down your initial idea of rules.

At the end of this video, it is my goal to help you have a fully formed idea of your game paired together with the thematic feel, narrative arc and skeletal structure of rules written down on the worksheets I provide. And from there, the next step is Prototyping and Playtesting, which is the next class in this series.

In order to get the most out of this class, I do recommend taking my first class in this series, Board Game Design 101: Foundations, where I talk about idea generation and capturing as well as fleshing out initial brainstorms so you have a fully articulated idea for your game to start from.


What this class is not:

This is not an "idea to publication" guide for experienced game-makers.
This is not about getting your game published or even playtesting (that will come in a later course).

This class is about:

Helping newer game designers (or people wanting to start designing) answer the core questions that every game idea needs answered before it can be turned into an actual game.
Inspiring anyone to try making a game of their own through using these step-by-step worksheets.
Helping people experience game-making as a worthwhile hobby in and of itself.