Stealing Game Mechanics – Board Game Design Time



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For more, check out the blog post: http://bit.ly/StealingMechanics

In this episode of Board Game Design Time, Chris talks about the idea of “stealing” mechanics from games? What do you think?

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26 Responses

  1. Anthony Bell says:

    I understand what you’re trying to say in a weird roundabout way, but I don’t really agree. I think that we should draw upon other games as influence, which should be apparent in the games we create. Straight up taking another mechanic from a game and putting into your own will hardly ever work, and won’t lead to ingenuity. Game mechanics need to make sense in the context of a game.

  2. Anthony Bell says:

    I understand what you’re trying to say in a weird roundabout way, but I don’t really agree. I think that we should draw upon other games as influence, which should be apparent in the games we create. Straight up taking another mechanic from a game and putting into your own will hardly ever work, and won’t lead to ingenuity. Game mechanics need to make sense in the context of a game.

  3. Diabolik771 says:

    Agricola stole from Caylus.

  4. Atheris Entertainment says:

    Great video! Thanks for sharing 🙂 This is true. So many people are fearful about borrowing mechanisms that currently exist. Though, it is possible and common to make a mechanism one's own.

  5. Kainui Penaloza says:

    I can see in the backround, YOU PLAY D&D!!! 😀

  6. Daniel Escorce says:

    You talked about how to say it, half of the video… I don´t understand why.

  7. Gecko Plays says:

    Bummer, was hoping the talk was about "stealing mechanics" like the captain from Coup and all that 😛

  8. Starbug Mechanic says:

    “You wouldn’t kill a policeman then steal his hat, poop in his hat, Mail the hat to his widow and steal the hat from her”. I didnt get that exactly right.

  9. Tr1pleOseveN says:

    Great example is exploding kitten to uno…..anyone agree?

  10. tom kent says:

    There's nothing new under the Sun.

  11. Kevin Queen says:

    Things have changed, monopoly use to sue anyone who even made a board game, one of the reasons they are the leader in the market in sells. Times have changed though, Hasbro has been far less open to suing I think because they have so much of the market today. Its really what's allowed the board game market to explode. I've just decided to get back into game design because of this have some great things planned

  12. Rick Schmidt says:

    There's nothing wrong with taking mechanics from other games. With board games, there's only so much you can do as far as mechanics go anyway. It's not like creating music, where there's an endless amount of original ideas you can conceive of (because music has way more variables like tempo, rhythm, pitch, timing, etc.). If you try to go to great lengths to create a new game mechanic, chances are you're only achieving the same end result that you could with a different mechanic, but in a less efficient way. Basically, you're over-complicating things.

    I'd say a board game's originality comes from what the sum of its parts makes, not what each individual part is.

  13. MonkeyMan says:

    Stealing from one source is plagiarism. Stealing from multiple sources is research.

  14. saluk says:

    This was a great series. I'm in the middle of a design challenge of my own and nearly every video has given me a new perspective on it. I wish there were more episodes!

  15. Disthron says:

    You've got some pretty mixed messages here dude. Steal…. but don't steal, steal fearlessly…. but don't steal! How about you use a different word? Like take, you take that mechanic that would be perfect for your game.

    Believe it or not, not everything is owned by someone. Witch is why taking something doesn't have the same connotation as stealing it.

    Think of it like a blacksmith. With each mechanic being like a different metal. You look at the work of other smiths, to see what metals were used and how they solved problems with the project. Then you take raw ingots, smelt them together to form new alloys, shape and mold them to implement your ideas and solve your games problems. I don't know, do you think that's a better analogy?

    Overall I think your message is positive but I think your communication is a little muddled.

  16. Alberto Miranda says:

    That's not Stealing, that's Piracy!

  17. Shawn Marcil says:

    Great series; it was an auto-subscribe! Awesome tips and I like that the focus is to just be creative and design what you enjoy without worrying about what happens with the game in the end.

    Just one thing though regarding the use of the word "mechanics", it is not the short form of "mechanisms", which I believe is more the word you are speaking about in this segment. (Sorry, for being that guy!) "Mechanics" is an area of science or the individuals who fix mechanical things.

    Keep the videos coming!

  18. Kylandsk8 says:

    I love this series! When are you going to make another video?

  19. Alex Nestor says:

    Is it OK to offer a bit of criticism? Try scripting episodes less tightly. You sound like me when I writing a paper and am trying to pad for length. I all ready know from the Podcast that you can be insightful without sounding so artificial and forced.

  20. Neil Googe says:

    I couldn't agree more… when I first came to game design I tried so hard to not copy any other games mechanics, to be so original… that three years in I hadn't finished a game.

    Now… I still haven't finished a game, but, I am a lot closer to finished games now that I don't worry about creating the ground breaking, most innovative games and mechanics ever.

    So much of what we consider to be originality comes from, as you mention, the way people combine what has come before in to something new. Of course, at times, people do come up with some new ground breaking never before seen approach to something. But even some of those games considered to be ground breaking or innovative, are just innovative combinations of ideas from other places…

    Great vid as always…

  21. Jokester The Mighty says:

    zoom more

  22. Tony Miller says:

    “All wisdom is plagiarism; only stupidiy is original.”

    ― Hugh Kerr

  23. Jimmy a Geek says:

    I m Creating a Turn Base Attack System in My Fablelock RPG Board Game

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