Princess Dice – Prototypes!

Do not fret, although I have not been posting much about Princess Dice, development continues! If you follow me on Twitter (why don’t you follow me on Twitter again?), you may have seen some teaser images I’ve posted. I have been working hard to make sure that the game is ready to show to publishers because I am certain that there is a market, and guess what… the game is pretty sweet as well!

Stickering the blank dice.

After playing with my cruddy first prototype for a while, the materials I ordered from Andrew Tullsen’s Print and Play Productions arrived. I got home before my daughters that day and was able to get a set ready before they showed up. I have to admit, putting the stickers on the dice and watching it slowly take shape had me super excited.

First prototype vs new and colorful.

As you can see, the new dice were slightly better than my initial prototype. My first attempt was just black and white art printed on address labels. I cut them out by hand and applied them to the dice. Andrew offers sticker sheets of 1/2″ stickers fully printed. This made the process a snap and the results are beautiful. I don’t know what kind of printer Andrew has, but the quality is awesome. The color laser printer at work doesn’t do this good of a job.

A complete prototype comes together.

In the time I was waiting on the dice to arrive, I worked on the board. I showed it off a bit with my last post thanks to Jamie Jones, but I hadn’t had my own complete set yet. This is the first full-prototype that my kids got to see. They were all giddy with excitement and begged me to play.

The first game with new gear.

This is the first game they got to play with the full set. My youngest gave up before we could get pictures, that’s why you only see two sets of score markers. The new dice were an instant hit. The colors are integral to the toddler rules, but they also serve to inform the players which dice have certain faces. This makes the decision to re-roll a little easier. With the old black and white dice, it wasn’t as obvious. My seven year old would previously pick arbitrary dice to re-roll because she wanted a particular result. After the first time seeing me pick specific dice because of their colors, she quickly adapted the strategy and started making informed re-roll decisions. Those are awesome moments as a geek dad!

Between games and work, I started thinking about sending out prototypes for others to play. That big horrendous board makes it very difficult to transport the game as well as ship it, so I started working on a revised concept that would use a much smaller board.

Playing with the guys.

This was my first attempt. The board is too small. It’s awesomely portable, and could fit in a small package, but it’s just too small to play with. Especially when playing with a bunch of grown men. Yeah we do that. Princess Dice works great with a couple beer if you were wondering.

After playing a few games with that little board, I worked on a larger version and tweaked the rules here and there in an attempt to eliminate all confusion. I’m not good with rules and I have never been satisfied with my results. That’s where playtesters come in. I’m not talking about the ones that I’ve showed the game. I need people to play it based on my rules alone and provide me feedback. Tell me what went wrong, what was misunderstood, and what I could do to improve my rules. I’ve sent out a few prototype sets now and I can’t wait to hear back!

Prototype ready to send out.

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