Antipode

Here is my submission for the Thousand Year Game Design Challenge.
The contest information can be found here at Daniel Solis’ blog:
The Thousand-Year Game Design Challenge

Antipode

Antipode is a two player abstract strategy game.

Contents
– 1 game board
– 2 pawns (1 red, 1 blue)
– 61 tokens (red on one side, blue on the other side)

Aim
The object is to form a line of your tokens across the board. To win, the line must stretch from any corner to the exact opposite corner. The tokens do not need to form a straight line, they just need to form a complete connection.

Preparation
1. Place the board between the two players so that each player is directly in front of one corner point.
2. Place a token on each corner point, alternating colors around the board. The corner in front of each player should correspond to the color they have chosen for play.
3. Place each player pawn directly on top of the token in the corner point in front of each player.
4. Place the remaining tokens in a position off the board that both players can easily reach. These tokens are the ‘pool’.

Setup

Game is ready to play

Starting the Game
The board should now be set up  so that each player is directly in front of his own pawn which is on top of a token of the same color, and should see two other tokens of that color in the corners diagonally across the board. In this game, blue always takes the first turn. Each turn consists of two steps which must be completed.

Step One: Placing a token
On your turn, your first action is to place a token on the board with your color facing up. You may place a token on any unoccupied space. Be aware that placing a token may cause other tokens to be flipped (see ‘Flipping tokens’ below). Before taking action with step one, you MUST be sure that it allows for step two to be possible.

Step Two: Moving your pawn
The second step of your turn is to move your pawn. You may move your pawn any number of spaces in a straight line, making no turns in the process. (Note that a straight line is considered to pass over a full space. You cannot, therefore, move in a position that would cause you to skip spaces by traveling the line between two spaces.) Your pawn must come to rest on a token of your own color. You may not land on an empty space, or one of your opponent’s tokens. While you are allowed to pass over as many tokens and empty spaces as you wish, you may not, under any circumstances, pass over your opponent’s pawn. Passing over tokens causes them to be flipped (see ‘Flipping tokens’ below). If you cannot make a legal move with your pawn, you must reverse your token placement for this turn and try again.

Each player has taken one turn

Flipping tokens
As stated above, each part of a player’s turn may cause tokens on the board to be flipped. Here are the rules that govern token flipping:
1. When a token is placed, any tokens in the spaces immediately adjacent to the space in which the token was played must be flipped. This means that you can turn your opponent’s tokens into your own, but also that you may cause your own tokens to flip to your opponent.
2. When moving your pawn, any tokens that your pawn passes over must be flipped over to display the opposite side. Just like with token placement, this applies to both players, so your opponent’s tokens become yours and vice versa.
3. EXCEPTION: A token occupied by either player’s pawn is protected, and therefore not affected by the ripple.

This is several moves into the game

The board is filling up!

Blue is in a good position here, but it's Red's turn!

End of the game
The game ends when one player successfully makes a connection from any one corner to that corner’s exact opposite. This means the connection will cover a minimum of nine spaces. As stated above, the connection does not need to form a straight line.
IMPORTANT: A connection is not considered complete unless it remains so after the second part of the player’s turn. For example, if you complete a connection by placing a token and flipping others, the game is not yet over. You MUST be able to legally move your pawn. If moving your pawn breaks the connection, the game is not yet over!

Blue makes a complete connection and wins the game.

Notes
If you manage to trap your opponent is such a way that it is impossible for that player to make a legal move with the pawn, you are considered to win by forfeit.
Eventually, the token in a given corner space can no longer be flipped, causing that corner to be ‘locked’ to one player. Be alert about this, as you may find yourself unable to complete a connection when this happens!

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One Response to “Antipode”

  1. Daniel Solis: Thousand Year Game Design Challenge - June Update Says:

    […] suggests using poker chips on a mouse board, but you can play this with rocks or via forum post. Antipode by Shane Hendrickson Much like the classic game Hex, your goal is to connect two sides of the […]

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