Here’s a game I made over the summer, inspired by but not entered into Game Chef, but I never got around to posting it here. It’s a mashup or Archipelago and some boardgame mechanics, where you explore an abandoned space ship.
A Shadow Among Shadows
Interstellar Diplomacy is a freeform-ish game I wrote as an entrant into the Golden Cobra Challenge. You play alien diplomats, meeting on earth to decide whether or not war will destroy the galaxy. I’m voting against it, but you might have other concerns.
The formatting for the game is just whatever raw text output that Google Drive created, because Scribus crapped out on me several hours into working on the game. Stupid Scribus, I’m beginning to really hate you. Juan Manuel Avila was kind enough to make some nice looking cards that should be helpful if you choose to play.
“Four years of pre-med, four years of medical school, one year of residency, years of professional experience back on Earth and all the memory downloads about extraterrestrial culture have all taught you this: you don’t know anything about what you’re doing. Not here, anyway. On the Sphere, everything is weird and different.
The Sphere is one of the wonders of the galaxy, an enormous construct of unknown material, built centuries ago by an unknown race to draw power from the black hole V616 Monocerotis. No one knows what the Sphere does with all the energy is draws from the hole, but sentients have managed to syphon off some for their own use on the surface of the Sphere. Now, sentient spacefaring races use it as neutral territory, a place where sentients of all species can meet as equals and trade ideas and goods and negotiate contracts and treaties. The sphere swarms with more races than you can count, each stranger than the last.
Each race with a major presence on the Sphere handles its own medical care, but many races from further away have only a minor foothold on the Sphere. For these races, they have to go to what doctors they can. Which is where you come in: you’re a doctor in Medical Bay Three, the insane ward. Medical Bays One and Two are ﬁlled with humans from the human contingent to the Sphere. Bay Three handles all the nonhumans that enter the human areas, seeking medical assistance. Every week, you’re treating some new species that you’ve never heard of. You have to ﬁ gure out what is normal for this race, what is wrong with this speciﬁc patient and how to treat them. Treating these patients is as much about being a detective as it is about being a doctor.”
I wound up writing a game for Game Chef 2003, only 11 years late. It’s a science fiction medical drama game, inspired by Gumshoe, wherein you investigate an extraterrestrial’s biology to try to figure out how they are supposed to work, what is wrong and how to treat them without killing them or provoking an interstellar war.
Medical Bay Three – Players Pack
Medical Bay cards
Medical Bay Three – GM information
Epidiah Ravachol is selling a microgame via self-addressed stamped envelope. To buy it, you mail him a dollar and a picture that you drew. These are the pictures that I drew. Sometime in the next few days I’ll mail them to him.