From IcehouseOrg
Jump to: navigation, search

Wow - trying hard to get my head around this after one read through. This may turn out to be a signature Icehouse game. Looking forward to giving it (a) a try and (b) some feedback . . . --Nycavri 15:19, 2 April 2008 (EDT)

That's so very nice to hear. I've had the idea stewing around for a while and I decided it was time to combine my notes from home, my notes at work, and the ideas in my head into one place. Any suggestions, especially ones that make the rules more simple, concise, and understandable will be greatly appreciated. I'd like to have it done enough to submit in the next IGDC which will require a non-trivial amount of playtesting. Donsheldon 08:45, 3 April 2008 (EDT)

"Loyal To"?

Just wondering what all the "is always loyal to the [Queen | Regent | Princess]" stuff is about. Does that mean that, if you have a Q/R/P, the associated piece can't be converted (capped)? David Artman 11:05, 3 April 2008 (EDT)

No, that's me waxing poetic about how if a piece has a pyramid which matches your Monad you can control it even if you're not on top. I will attempt to clarify this (or at least more clearly separate my flavor text from rules) in a future update. Donsheldon 13:17, 3 April 2008 (EDT)

Things I noticed:

Things I noticed/questions I have after one read-through:

  1. I guess your dancer(s) can't move when you don't have a monad?
  2. Clarify: you can mix two pieces you control? So I could, as my first move, get rid of my buerocrat and artist, and get two more soldiers? (Not sure if that's a good opening move, but is it possible?)
  3. I think it might be fun to have the different monads move differently, or to have some pieces move and mix to different locations (like chess pawns).
  4. About setup and "forward": is my general in the third rank forward, or in the back rank and off to one side? (Maybe do a 2x4 setup instead of 3x3-with-a-hole?)

  1. That would be true. Make sure you have another way to not lose the game with your next move.
  2. Yes and yes.
  3. I am considering this but there's already so much complexity to the rules (compared to where I'm aiming for). I remain open to these kinds of ideas as the necessary revisions happen.
  4. You caught my ambiguity! It was my intention to have the General be in a "forward" position but when I started thinking about six players on chessboard wedges it occured to me that the intial setup diagram could be for a vertical board (as I first thought of it) or a horizontal board (as you so aptly question). A 2x4 setup would make the game unplayable by more than two players. I'm not strongly for the 3x3-1 layout, but it does have that nice feature.

(I've numbered your points, hope you don't mind.) Donsheldon 13:26, 7 April 2008 (EDT)

Reasons for changes

Many thanks to my brother Dale and my friend Marc who played this game several times on their lunch hour.

Under their advisement I brought the game down to a 5x5 volcano board instead of a 4x8 half chessboard. The downside is that the game is no longer expandable with chessboard wedges, but they assure me that the tighter quarters lead to a much more interesting experience.

They also had some great input on the Dancer piece. The original rules, while cute and fun to read, did not make a desirable piece. They shared stories about "giving away dancers" to stymie the opponent, which is not something I wanted for any piece, let alone this one.

And thus, my first update to this game. It may be ready in time for the IGDC yet. Once again, huge thanks to Marc and Dale.

Donsheldon 13:52, 18 April 2008 (EDT)

Possible rules change?

This game has a lot of promise to be an Icehouse classic, but it's hindered by a disproportionate complexity of rules. I imagine after many games you learn how each type of piece moves, but it's a struggle to get through even one game with the current rules. My suggestion to improve this is simple: make each size of piece correlate to a particular type of movement. This way, instead of having to remember the way each piece moves (and some are very confusing as it stands), you simply need to remember three movements. I've been experimenting on and off with this idea and feel it works well and is in keeping with the theme.

Most recently I've been looking at: Larges move 2 spaces vertically or horizontally, mediums move diagonally one space and confer the ability to "hop" pieces, and smalls move 1 space vertically or horizontally. The movements are additive (and subtractive), for example a large + small can move 1 or 3 spaces horiz./vert. or can move like a knight (which can't hop pieces). Similarly, a medium + small can move like a knight (that CAN hop pieces), can move 1 space horiz or vert, Basically each size of 'mid possesses a particular vector of movement which must be combined with the other piece's vector of movement. This scheme has shown promise so far, but I'd love to hear some feedback from others. Should I add this as a separate game, maybe AlbiorIIx? A variation on Albiorix's page? Is Donsheldon still active?

headphoned 10:00, 7 November 2011 (EST)

Having just played a couple of games of Albiorix, I concur with your critique, and I find your recommendations attractive. --Carthoris 02:17, 8 March 2012 (UTC)


Besides the great complexity of piece types/moves, I found the orientation of this game a little ambiguous and confusing. The initial setup of each side is in a corner, so I imagine one forward diagonal and two forward orthogonal paths. But the rules are written the other way around. Based on the setup diagram, I concluded that what the designer meant by "forward" was what I considered forward-left. It does have a strange effect of "swirling" the board clockwise, given the "forward" bias of some of the piece moves.

There's a lot to like about this game, so the complexities and confusions are doubly vexing. --Carthoris 02:17, 8 March 2012 (UTC)