A Samurai push-your-luck dice rolling game with set collection

PawnJoker Games is an indie game design company consisting of Nicholas Markgraf and anyone else who wants to offer an opinion. Raised almost extensively on digital and analog games, Nicholas is an educated and experienced gamer and recent game designer. PawnJoker Games seeks to build a game and make it better through community outreach and assistance.

Bushido, The Card Game is a Samurai push-your-luck, set collection game for 2-6 players. Each roll of the die will leave you with a decision, collect virtues which are needed to win, or activate Daimyo abilities to alter the game in your advantage. Learn enough Virtues of the Bushido Code to impress one of the Diamyo in order to win!

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The idea for Bushido, or a die rolling game anyway, came from my general dislike of rolling dice. As a game designer I wanted to try my hand at developing a push-your-luck dice rolling game that I enjoy, and others would too. Surprisingly the die-rolling mechanic that was developed for the game is the one thing that seems to have stayed the same from the very beginning! After the mechanics of the game were fairly solid I was left with a game that didn’t have much a theme. I knew I wanted to set the game in feudal Japan (lets face it, that’s an awesome theme!) The idea of training in a Dojo to collect Virtues came to me after a small amount of research into Feudal Japanese culture. It just made sense.

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Bushido, The Card Game doesn’t lack in “take that” gameplay. Many of the Virtue cards dynamically alter the game when collected. Focus tokens can force a player to reroll any die result at any time—and each of the Daimyo have a special ability to help or hinder training!

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Beginning it’s design as quite a different game, the central mechanic of roll and allocate dice, the collect the sets to win have been the focus the entire development cycle. Once the mechanics and theme were fleshed out and developed (and the back stories for each of the Daimyo were conceived) the art development was pretty simple. A talented and affordable freelance artist was able to design the six Daimyo of the game off of very little information and about a paragraph of back-story. And he did a fantastic job.

Bushido, the Card Game follows a simple turn structure. Roll 3 dice, allocate at least 1 die to at least 1 card and reroll the remaining un-allocated dice; collecting any Virtue cards that have been successfully completed. This basic process continues until one players completely meets the set requirement of any one of the three(of six) Daimyo that have been selected for that game. Sounds pretty boring—but there is more.

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All the Daimyo cards have a unique ability that also require dice contributions to trigger. These effects alter the game in interesting and compelling ways that layer the game with player interaction and huge, unforgettable plays. In addition to the Daimyo abilities, some of the virtues that are collected throughout the game provide players with one time abilities that delve deeper into strategy and player interaction. Finally, Bushido includes a focus mechanic that mitigates the luck aspect of the game—focus tokens can be used to reroll any single die, even your opponents.

For a game that went from single win condition to multiple, from rolling and collecting to “take that” and from luck to less luck—Bushido, the Card Game is thoroughly tested and enjoyed by all who have rolled the dice.

Bushido, the Card Game is now on Kickstarter.

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