Our second playtest was slightly more organized than the first: after trying out a different game (also in progress), we had four playtesters to try out Pitch Fight! Here are our notes of questions and comments from the playtesters:
- If you don't think you can win a pitch, can you vote for the other person and get a point for voting?
We thought this was an interesting question. We decided against it for the time. We didn't want to have anyone feel like they have no chance of winning.
- (Observation) After a pitch, even the first pitch of the two, the playtesters added comments about the pitch, unintentionally solidifying the pitch. For instance, one time the topic was "TV show", and the first pitch was "Sitcom. Laugh track. No actors.", and all the playtesters instantly began talking about it and how it would play out, which made the initial pitch much funnier than it would have been if the pitcher had just pitched and no one said anything. It was almost like the voters were making up the defense round for the pitch before the defense round even happened.
This is something that did not bother our playtesters. However, it did seem that the more that a pitch was talked about, the more likely it would get the vote. This may be something that would require further testing, with more careful observations (currently we have only final score counts, we did not write down who got what vote.
- What if you flub your pitch?
We had one playtester who decided, mid-pitch, that he messed up his wording. We gave him a second shot, but he brought up the valid question. We may leave this up to the discretion of the players, instead of a hard and fast rule. Second chances are up to you!
- (Alternative Game Mode) Pitch Elimination! Players all pitch in a round robin style and one player is eliminated every round until one pitch remains!
We haven't tested this, but we want to! Which leads to another idea...
- (Alternative Game Mode) Pitch King! Two players pitch against each other. The winning pitcher moves on to pitching against the next player. The goal of the game mode is to win five pitches in a row and become the Pitch King!
- What if. You had ties. Instead of colored index cards.
We got stuck on this idea, and now we really want to include it. Thanks to our playtesters for pitching this to us!
One of the problems with our index card prototype was that the pitchers often forgot what color they were, and everyone had to check who they were voting for before each vote. We want to include, in the future, clip-on ties of different colors/patterns so that people can instantly see what color/pattern to vote for!
Also for the future, we want to test out the idea of having fake bills instead of points. One of our initial brainstorming ideas for Pitch Fight included investing money and each player having capital. However, it would have created an entirely different economy and we did not include it. But we think adding fake bills would add the feeling of investing in a pitch and getting returns from it, so we are working on including what we call Pitch Bucks!
We also want to test out Pitch Elimination and Pitch King and see how they play out!
Several of our playtesters in the second playtest expressed interest in creating a Pitch Fight app. We thought this would be a nice complement to a physical version of the game! As there are still things we would like to test, we are putting the app idea on the back burner, but it definitely has some merit - this could be potential to reach those who enjoy smartphone party games but not necessarily games with physical components.
We've made a rule book Google Doc for the meantime! Feel free to leave comments here (EDIT: now with actual rules!): https://docs.google.com/document/d/1QTB9lauixk8jPUpJKAeUBIuRWQpT7yknLxam...
We hope we can participate in InGaDeMo again next year, whenever it takes place! It took place at a tumultuous period for both of us, so we didn't get as much playtesting in as we'd like. However, we're grateful for the opportunity to work on a game this year, and good luck to everyone on working on your games!
If you want to reach out to us, please leave a comment in the rulebook!