Global Game Jam (Theme: Ritual)

This last weekend I participated in Global Game Jam for the very first time, although it was a pretty small project. I prototyped a board game using only paper and markers that I was wanting to outline for a while now and thought GGJ would be a good time to do so. The game also happened to fit perfectly with this year's GGJ theme of ritual.

HERBOLARIA (tentative)

A 2-player tabletop game that utilizes herbology as a means of gameplay.






The players roll the die and whoever gets the highest number can go first. The player must pick 3 illnesses (at random) from the pile. Illnesses vary from things such as thirst and hunger to blood poisoning and skin infections. The player's piece on the board must always start in a neutral spot and not on top of a playing block (currently working on this feature for the next build).


The game is composed of a grid of terrain blocks (forest, river, soil) and each block houses a different herb that is appropriate to the habitat. Ex. cedar trees are found in forest blocks, etc.


1. Appease (optional)

-In each game, a major animal spirit will overlook the board (such as the Yaguarete pictured above) that can help out a player if they gain their favour. I had other cards with different animals but couldn't think of what different abilities each animal could have or how they could influence play, so that may be dropped altogether or figured out in the next iteration. 

-To appease a spirit, the player rolls the die. If the die is an even number, nothing happens (I might review this and make something not nice happen) and the player must move on to the next phase of their turn. If it's an odd number, the spirit will favour the player.

-When the spirit favours the player, it varies on which language version of the game they are playing. I made two versions of each card: one with its Guarani name and no description, and ones with its scientific or English equivalent and a brief description of what the herb does.

                                             -If playing in English: when the spirit favours the player, the player can detach an entire terrain block and move it elsewhere on the board. I plan to refine this in the next version by adding more blocks to the playing board and making an actual physical playing board. Player cannot move the block they are currently on.

                                            -If the player is playing in Guarani: when the spirit favours the player, the player can choose one herb card and flip it over to see its non-Guarani name as well as its description. The card must then be flipped back into its original state.

                                           -If the spirit successfully reveals the herb the player needs, the player cannot take it in the same turn. Ex. you flip over a card and see it's the wormseed that you need. You must put it back to its original state and move blocks without taking it.

2. Move blocks

-Moving is mandatory in every turn, whether or not the player has successfully appeased the game spirit.

-Can only move diagonally one block at a time

-Cannot occupy same block as other player

-Cannot take herbs that does not apply to illness, but can move it to a different corresponding block (ex. "I found yerba mate in the soil block but I don't need it, so I'll move it to a different soil block to mess up my opponent's movement scheme")


-Once all corresponding herbs have been found, the player must appease the spirit one last time. If successful, the player wins and the game is over. If not successful, the player loses all their herbs and must start over from zero (I realize this is a very troll mechanic to have so I may change it completely in the next version).

Might create some kind of manual/herb guide implementation that players can refer to somehow outside gameplay and during gameplay.

Hopefully I can get the next version onto cardboard (or assorted board game pieces) to have ready by GDC!