For our project, Leah and I decided to create an original board game called The Macbeth Games. It’s playable for all of our classmates, and has the perfect ratio of education and fun. We wanted to do a board game because it was the best way to incorporate all of our ideas and creativity into one cohesive project. It was also doable in a way where Leah could create most of the artistic aspects, and I could supply the written details.
In The Macbeth Games, the players fight to the death, eliminating each other one by one. We chose to do this because it’s an understandable format and quite relevant to the book. Our board itself contains various types of spaces. This was done to make the game-play more complex and exciting. Along the border of the course, we’re including small drawings and their descriptions. There’s usually one for each scene, so we had to keep them small. These drawings acted as a recap/guide of the plot of Macbeth, educating the player along their journey.
We included a set of instructions with our game that describe how to play it in detail. Here, I am going to include them and explain why did it the way we did.
Goal: to be the last one standing
As stated earlier, this is a simple and straightforward goal that is relevant to what goes on in Macbeth.
We chose a small range of players because it helps control the length of the game. If there were too many people playing, the game would take a long time to finish, and we don’t want people to get bored. However, 4 is our minimum because with any fewer players, there would not be much excitement.
Setup: Each player picks a character and their card. Everyone starts at the first box of the board with 12 health. Use your card as a marker to remember where your character is.
12 might seem to be a random or unusual number. However, each character has 12 health because that is the most you can roll on 2 dice, this will be explained in the Duel/Alliance section.
Gameplay: Establish an order to take turns in. This would preferably be clockwise or counterclockwise from the person reading the instructions. Each player rolls the 2 dice and moves that many spaces. Once you reach the end, go back to the start.
We tried to keep the game-play as simple as possible, and this style was a good way to do so.
Food/Water spaces: you can roll again if you land on a normal food or water space. However, if you land on Lady Macbeth’s special poisoned food, go back 3 spaces.
We added these as a way to change up and add variety, but also to incorporate an essential character.
Duel/Alliance spaces: when you land on an alliance, you have the opportunity to choose any other player to team up with. This comes into play if you land on a duel space. If this happens, spin the spinner to choose your opponent. If you have an alliance with that person, you will not have to fight. However, this only works once. Continue otherwise in a duel as so:
take turns rolling the dice. The difference between the total of each player’s rolled numbers is the damage that the player with the lower number takes. For example, if Banquo rolled an 11 and Macduff rolled a 7, Macduff takes 4 units of damage.
repeat this process until a player reaches 0 health. That player is dead.
continue the game without the eliminated player. The winner of the duel gets restored health once the duel ends.
This may be the most confusing part of our game, but the instructions should be enough to clarify everyone’s understanding of what to do. The alliance aspect was added to introduce some competition and resentment within the players. The duel aspect was added to move the game along, as it is how each player is eliminated until only one is left and wins. Since each player has 12 health, each duel should not last too long, but it won’t be over immediately. The design of this game is all about balance.
Along the way: stop to read our information about each scene in order to refresh your memory and give your character that spite and urge to kill.
The side pieces are the way that we kept the game informative and original.