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Students Design Original Board Games
Posted 02/13/2017 09:26AM

Packer Symposium - Thinking Outside the Box

Students Design Original Board Games During 2017 Packer Symposium

"Thinking Outside The Box" was one of a dozen Symposium classes for Eleventh and Twelfth Grade students. Led by Upper School math teachers Ian Rumsey and Brendan Kinnell, it introduced the world of modern-day tabletop board games to 14 upperclassmen.

Students began by learning about the fundamental structures that go into the making of a board game. Subsequent days featured in-depth lessons on topics such as win condition, competition structure, social and game mechanics, and theme.

With these gameplay structures in mind, students proposed, designed, and play-tested games of their own, eventually pitching these games to both professional game designers and Lower School Packer students.

Below are playable "print-and-play" versions of some of these games, which the student-developers encourage Packer families to try at your next Game Night!

Aww, Sheep! (Ages 7 & up, 3-6 players) — You are an up-and-coming farmer in the small, pastoral town of Baaahhston. Young and ambitious, your only goal is to amass the largest and most impressive flock of sheep in all of the town. Be warned — there are other fiending farmers around you, attempting to create their own, equally impressive sheep flocks. Be on the lookout for the mystical golden sheep, sure to bring you a lifetime of good farming fortune. Hold on to your overalls, because Awww, Sheep! is a flocking good time for the whole family. Download print-and-play rules and game components.

Silent Sabotage (Ages 10 & up, 2-4 players) — Your lifelong goal has been to become a real spy. You have made it through the preliminary trials and the directors have narrowed it down to four contestants for the final job. You are one of them. The final round is four person challenge: whoever wins gets the job, the others will go home. Each potential spy will get assigned two missions to complete somewhere around the world. Whoever completes two missions first, or silently sabotages the other recruits, gets to enter the prestigious business and change their life forever. Download print-and-play rules and game components.

T-Wrecked (Ages 7 & up, 3-4 players) — You are a paleontologist. Your goal is to make history and be the first to uncover the Tyrannosaurus Rex. In order to uncover the Tyrannosaurus Rex you must first build smaller dinosaurs, which will reward you with the parts/bones of the T-Rex. The first paleontologist to assemble all the parts of the T-Rex onto the T-Rex map wins the game. Download print-and-play rules & game components.

A Texas Tale (Ages 11 & up, 3-4 players) — A Texas Tale is a worker-placement game in which aspiring oil tycoons try to conquer the Texas oil industry by properly managing their workforce to create good investment opportunities. It is a 3-4 player game designed for players 11 and older, and takes around an hour. Download print-and-play rules & game components.

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