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Contest entry for the Summer 2018 Design Contest

Designer: André Heines

Gridblock

An abstract strategy game for 2-4 Players

Components: Edit

- All 36 tiles.

- All 80 cubes.

- 24 cards with value 1-3 (red, yellow, green, blue).

Setup: Edit

- Each player gets 6 cards and 20 cubes in player color.

- In a 2 player game both players receive the components of 2 colors.

- Randomly place the tiles in a 6 by 6 grid with the symbols up. (The symbols should be halfway evenly distributed and not packed.)

- Each player randomly draws one card (per color in a 2 player game) and places one cube of his/her color in the center of a tile showing the symbol depicted on this card. In addition to that, he/she places a second cube in one of the four corners of this tile.

- Determine a starting player.

Gameplay: Edit

The game consists of 6 rounds, with 3 turns each. During the game the players try to place as many of their cubes on the grid as possible to score points. Accumulating cubes on a tile can provide additional points.

Turn sequence:

Each player shuffles his 6 cards and draws 3. Those are his/her cards for the current round.

Starting with the first player and then going clockwise, the current player plays one card and moves his cube the number of tiles, indicated by the number on the card, placing it on the center of the target tile. Only horizontal and vertical movement is allowed, but not diagonal movement. During movement the direction may be changed, but it is not allowed to enter a tile twice during one turn. If the tile where the movement ends shows the same symbol than the played card and if there is a free corner left on that tile, the player puts one of his/her cubes on an empty corner. In future turns players may place additional cubes on a tile, if there is a free corner left. If there are cubes on all four corners, cubes can move through or onto the tile, but no additional cubes can be placed on it, the tile is ‘gridblocked’.

Note: If a player can’t place a cube during a turn, he/she can put one cube back into the box. This makes it easier to keep track of the remaining turns.

Optional rule: Instead of shuffling the cards every round, you can use the three remaining cards for the even rounds. This variation makes the game more calculable and tactical. The players are allowed to look at their remaining cards.

End of game: Edit

After 6 rounds the player with most points wins. Each cube is worth 1 point. If a player is the only one with 2 cubes on a tile, he/she gets 1 bonus point. If a player has occupied 3 corners of a tile, he/she gets 2 bonus points. In a 2 player game the points of both colors are added up. In case of a tie it is a tie.

Optional rule: If a player manages to occupy 3 corners of a tile and no other player occupies the fourth corner, the player automatically wins the game.

Optional rule: To make a 2 player game a little more challenging, only the color with the least points is scored.

Variants: Edit

Variant A:

Create a 6 by 6 grid and determine the starting tiles. After that in reversed turn order every player flips 2 tiles (3 in a 3 player game). They may choose every tile, as long as all face up tiles remain horizontally or vertically connected to the grid. The first player who ends his movement on one of those tiles claims it by putting a cube on it. Other players can move through this tile, but may not end their movement on them.

Variant B:

Create randomly a 2 by 3 grid of tiles with different symbols. Every player gets a set of 6 tiles with different symbols. In reversed turn order all players add their tiles to the grid, one by one. They may add the tiles wherever they want, as long as they are horizontally or vertically connected to the grid. In a 2 player game with this variant each player only uses one color.