Monday, September 8, 2008

Discussion Group

I just set up a YahooGroup (an email discussion group) where people who are playing the game can talk and share ideas.  I'd love to meet lots of  you there.  Share your card ideas, your decks, and your strategies! Help us make this game amazing!

It can be found at

Join in the discussion!


Rebirth, Refocus

I haven't done a thing with the game or the website in a long time, as you can see.  For a long time, I've been wondering what the future of the game is.  It's not practical for me to try and self-publish the game, and I can't really do a lot of development as a single author.  I was simply not sure what to do next.  In the meantime, a lot of my own additional creative effort was going into my music and my blogging.

So, today, I was noticing that, even without any promotional effort on my part, people are still signing up as playtesters on the mailing list.  And that baffles me a bit.  I haven't done any thing at all to encourage that or to promote it.  But still people are coming and checking the game out.

Suddenly, as I was commenting to my wife about that phenomenon, it hit me in a rush of the Spirit.  I need to keep doing the game, to keep adding to it, and I need to not worry about whether or not it will EVER get published.  I just need to make the game and share it with everyone out there.  As that thought came to my mind, I was overwhelmed and it even brought tears to my eyes.  That was my answer.  I just need to make and share.

So, suddenly, I have a clear vision.  I will do just that.  I spent the rest of the evening re-editing the v6.0 of the rules, and then I posted it and the 6.0 cardset.

Please join in the fun.  If you've never tried Chapter and Verse, give it a whirl.  If you've got an older version, give 6.0 a try.  And let me know what you think!

Friday, March 28, 2008

6.0 Rules rewrite almost done

 -  - Back to Top
Now that I've tested the new version of the game a few times, I've felt the need to write them out to share them with the rest of the world!  So, I've been working on that lately.  I was up a bit last night trying to do that.  It was tricky, 'cause I was sitting with my laptop in bed, and my wife was watching TV.  It's kinda tough to focus on writing with Chuck Norris kicking the trash out of the bad guys on the screen...

Still, I got a lot done, in between the good karate scenes!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Gary Gygax Dies

By now, of course, every geek on the planet has heard the news.  Gary Gygax, co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons has died.  He was suffering from failing health for the last year or so, and finally succumbed.  For more information and other links, you can read this article (Link removed).

As a gamer and game designer, I have to take a moment and give a tribute to Gary Gygax, the man who pretty much defined adventure gaming.  And, personally, as one who grew up playing D&D, I have to tip my hat to him.  For me, in high school, I had few friends.  The few that I had were other social outcasts.  We drew together for our weekly "game club" role-playing sessions.  We played all of them, Traveller, Boot Hill, Top Secret, but mostly we played Dungeons and Dragons.  We did some miniatures gaming, too, but by far it was D&D that held us together.

For a young boy with an innovative and creative mind, D&D provided the perfect outlet.  One by one, I saw others like me turn to drugs as a way to fulfill their need to explore, but my friends and I could do all that by living our fantasies with swords and wizards.

Unfortunately, for a while, in my life, the game consumed me, and especially my attention and time.  My senior year, my grades were horrible.  College was even worse.

But in the end, I grew up.  Now, there is much that I both like and dislike about the game.  I learned a lot about good and evil by playing the game.  I learned especially, that even when you're just pretending to be evil, it still can mess with your friendships.  And I learned that in the game, you can even find yourself being better and more noble than you might be in real life.

So, I'd like to thank Gary Gygax for making Dungeons and Dragons, and I hope his family is well.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

First Test of v6.0

Last night my son and I tested the new version of the basic game.  It was dubbed an immediate success.  Not only did he really enjoy the game, but as soon as we were done, he lept into his ideas for cards for the advanced game (the collector/deck building game).  The cool thing was that his suggestions showed that he understood the scripture stories because the card effects he was talking about reflected the scriptures!  He was thinking, for example, of how a "Nephi" character card might interact on the table with a "Laman" character card.  It was thrilling to watch!  And the dude's only ten!

Anyway, I want to test it a few more times before I remake and repost the cardsets, and I haven't rewritten the new rules, yet.

Basically, it's the same game.  The verses are still chosen from the Scripture Mastery lists.  In fact, I didn't change any of the scripture quotes or excerpts I'd been using.  I've done a few things to streamline play, and especially to streamline learning the game.

  1. Now, instead of numbers representing the various Strength, Faith, etc..  points, there are simply letters:  S, F, etc..  Ultimately, in the published version, these will be replaced with visual graphic icons, in a similar way to the "mana" symbols in MTG or the Pokemon/Energy types in Pokemon.  Instead of trying to get 12 points in a certain theme, now you simply accumulate icons.  This keeps you from having to add up what's on the table, and all you have to do is count.  Most cards now have one or two icons/letters.  Some have more, and some will even have a "FF" double icon, counting as two.  I found this makes play much faster.  In fact, I was surprised just how much faster it is.  I still haven't decided how many icons you have to have in the chapters to close up a book.  I'm thinking 5 or 7, but the jury's still out.
  2. The card effects for the Basic game have changed, but only a little.  I went through all of the verses and counted the number of repetitions of each word (except for the "and"s and "the"s).  The most common words were the ones I set up for the "Keyword" effect.  One of the goals is that someone can grab the whole stack of basic game cards.  Split them in half, shuffle them, and play.  With these keyword verses relating to more words, then there is a greater likelihood that the combinations will actually come up.  I also had to re-write the wording of a few verse effects to reflect the new icon style of play.
  3. To streamline learning, there are only 4 standardized effects:  Quote, Prayer, Keyword, and Discard.  Everything else will be in the advanced cardsets.

Other than that, it's pretty much the same game.  It played much more quickly, much more smoothly.  It was very easy to teach it to my son.  That may well have been because he was a bit familiar with previous versions, and he's also fluent in playing more complex collectible games.  I'll have to try and teach it to some folks that have no CCG background and see what they think.

I'm getting re-excited to see how it might fit into the world of LDS games, and help people learn their Scripture Mastery.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Future of C&V

In the last few months, I've been giving a lot of thought to the future of the game.  It all started out when Covenant turned down the game.  No fault of theirs or mine, really, just a business decision, but it made me look at the game in a different way.

At first I wondered if I wanted to continue on with the game.  I mean, I'd put a lot of work into it, and if I were to carry on my own, I would have to put in a lot more.  Did I want to take that away from my family or my other pursuits, like music?  Or did I want to proceed with the game design?

Well, it seems like the game can't leave me alone.  As I've been mulling over the comments I've been getting back from some of the testers, and the comments I got back from Covenant, and combining that with my own knowledge of both game design and marketing, I've been getting hit with ideas out of nowhere to make it a more fun game, a more intense game, and ultimately  more marketable game.

So, what that means is another version of the game!  V6.0!  I'm going to start work on it this week, and hopefully have a basic cardset out within a few weeks after that.  I'm actually very excited about the ideas I have for the rules.  This new version will accommodate those that want to casually pick up a stack of verse cards, shuffle them and play the game, as well as those that want to be more in-depth gamers and make competitive decks.  That's a tricky balance to find, but I think we can make it happen!

Anyway, join me for the ride!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Visitor Comment

 -  - Back to Top
Favorite verses: Alma 37:23 about Gazelem's stone. Wow, what if we had a stone like that!

D&C 123:13-16. Waste and wear out our lives in bringing to light hidden things of darkness. Really ponder this scripture’s significance and meaning. Future things depend on our understanding and fulfilling this scripture. Amazing!

Favorite characters: Captain Moroni is amazing standing up for righteousness and values. Ammon is amazing in how much faith he has in the promise that he received and in the trust he had in his prayers with the Lord. Some amazing things happened because of his faith. Nephi and his two sons Nephi and Lehi who raises his brother from the dead, performs miracles, promised that whatever he asked for would be given to him, (Helaman 10:4-5), etc. just before the saviour visits the Nephites...these two Nephi's were amazing! It just says that the father left and was never heard of again (3 Nephi 1:2-3)...wonder where he went...Jerusalem? That would be interesting...

Favorite stories: I love the story about the three nephites and how they could not be contained or destroyed. I often wonder where they are now and who they are talking to. That is amazing! I also love the story about how the saviour visited the other sheep (lost tribes) and how some day we would have their record too. Where are they and what are they doing?

The other amazing story that I love is that Joseph Smith was only allowed to translate the unsealed portion of the Book of Mormon. WOW! What about the sealed version, wouldn’t it be awesome if we could prepare ourselves to find out what is within!