Things & Stuff
The WHAT Project??
2006-05-03 - 11:15 a.m.
Firstly, I'm going to be taking up these first entries as a kind of about-me type thing, just passing along some of my interests and (hopefully) letting you all know something more about me.
Now, then - take a quick peek to your left. See that animated thing that says "GIPF"? Okay. You should know something here - that's NOT a typo. That's the correct spelling.
I'm a gamer. I have played RPGs and boardgames and cardgames off and on for most of my life. I subscribed to GAMES magazine a couple times, and probably will again.
It was through GAMES that I learned of the Project. A game designer named Kris Burm came up with an idea: a series of abstract strategy games that could be linked/combined into a huge game, but could still be played individually.
GIPF was the first game of the Project - the linchpin. The other games are linked to GIPF through "potentials" - additional pieces that, if used, grant its owner a one-time bonus ability, like jumping or taking an extra move.
Here's the catch. If a player wants to use his potential piece, the other player can challenge him to a game that the piece is linked to. For instance, if the player using the white pieces in GIPF has a potential piece from the game TAMSK and wants to use it, the player controlling the black pieces can let him do so. OR Black can challenge White to a game of TAMSK. If there's a challenge, then GIPF is set aside, TAMSK is brought out and played...and whoever wins the game of TAMSK detemined whether the potential in the GIPF game can be used.
Confused? Let's try it this way. You are playing checkers, but one of your pieces is replaced by a bishop from chess. If you want to use the piece as a one-shot bishop - move it diagonally an unlimited number of squares - your opponant could challenge that. So you both play a game of chess, and whoever wins the chess game decides whether the piece is a bishop - and gets used like one - or if it's just an ordinary checker.
As a game player I was fascinated by the idea. Burm said in an interview that he used to play games all the time with a relative. Along their carpet was a design like a racetrack, and each of them had five cars. After a game of whatever, the cars would advance by die rolls: winner rolled six dice and dropped the lowest, loser rolled five dice. So there was an ongoing contest in addition to the games.
And the games are gorgeous. Very simple design, usually just a board and basic pieces. But in TAMSK, the pieces are three-minute sand timers...and if the time on one runs out, you can't move that one. In ZERTZ, the board is a hexagon made up of rings...and you can take rings from the board as you play. The last of the six games, PUNCT, just came out last year. It's an interesting twist on TWIXT.
Now...if you're interested - if I haven't bored (board?) you silly, go click the link and check them out.
Okay. Enough of that. Go play something.
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