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Me and Icehouse

In 1998, I was unable to convince local players to try Icehouse, so I gave up on the idea of making pieces. In 2005, when I saw them in a local game store, I got excited about the game again and bought paper Icehouse, Zendo and 3 stashes of plastic pieces (and a friend bought the other two colors). I then built my storage box. Finding the icehouse pieces also led me to piecepack, which is exciting, too. I've also built my own Chessboard_wedges that are a little different than Eeyore's. My wife is worried that I'm going to start making pyramids out of my mashed potatoes next. (She's wrong, I'm going to make some tie-dyed looking ones out of resin.  ;) )

I've been giving Fluxx away as a gift quite often, but never took the time to see what else the Looney Labs had available. I am sad that I didn't do so earlier.


Willow is my 3 year old daughter (in 2005 when I wrote this) and she designed her own Icehouse Game- How Pretty Is That?. (Keeping her age up to date could be tedious and I'll probably forget, but she was born in 2002, so you can do the math.)

Games by me

I developed the following completed games:

  • Hexano (which is nearly identical to Mega Hexano which is published here. I didn't include the full tree requirement. I'm not sure if that makes this game better or not.) I also had two versions. The 37 hex/hex board and the 5x5 offset square hex board.
  • Mini-Hexano (which is nearly identical to Hexano which is published here. Again, I didn't include the full tree requirement. Adding that requirement makes the game playable. I also kept the concept of scoring.
  • Mega-Hexano which is identical to volcano, except played on a 6x6 offset square hex board.
  • Martian Sparks - It plays ok, but I need to write up the rules so that someone else can understand them.

And I'm working on the following nearly complete games:

And I always have many ideas that I'm fooling around with.


I don't like the idea of making your volcano boards "form fitting." It eliminates half of their use. If you have them flat, you have the option of playing on either the squares or the points. You get two boards for the price of one! Maybe I just don't see the advantage to having the lines raised, but it seems like a waste. I don't think we'll ever get away from "uni-taskers" in gaming, but I like keeping them "separate." I.e. I have my gaming kit that has all my generic equipment and then my "individual games" that I enjoy to play.

Links and Links I Want

I'd like to see: Teaching Icehouse I have finally pulled together 4 people who are willing to play Icehouse with me. They range from "excited to finally play" (me) to "willing to play if someone will teach them." Unfortunately, none of us have actually played. Is there a good way to take baby steps to teach the game? Would it work to take turns and discuss things through a game before making it turnless?

Update: It was incredibly easy to teach three other gamers. I guess the key is to get the right people. It was fun and I'd like to play again. We were all new and none of us had heard about the "snowball" before. We stumbled into making one, but only after we had several different patches of activity.