Invisible City Productions Invisible City Productions is a collective of game designers, writers, and artists who provide this as a space for the creators of secret media to come together and touch antennae.

Invisible City Productions Invisible City Productions is a collective of game designers, writers, and artists who provide this as a space for the creators of secret media to come together and touch antennae.

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Recent Posts
Power Up! Jewel Thieves: Game of the Month for July 2015
Power Up! Jewel Thieves
The Elephant Song Game Deck
The Elephant Song Game Deck: Game of the Month for June 2015
Shapeshifting Simulacra

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jiuylb777 (Jonathan A. Leistiko)
wvupeu775 (Jonathan A. Leistiko)
Shana Rosenberg (BAG)
Kat (Miscellaneous Halloween Thoughts...)
Derek (MetalTalon)

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Power Up! Jewel Thieves: Game of the Month for July 2015 · 1 July 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for July 2015 – by guest designer Desirée Ward – is Power Up! Jewel Thieves. Power Up! Jewel Thieves is a game of resource gathering and allocation with dynamic player powers and shared set collection goals for two larcenous burglars. At the start of the game, you have a few power cubes and a small hand of power cards. Each power card offers a track of powers that escalate in efficacy as you power them up with power cubes. Card powers generally focus on gaining more or better power cubes or gems (victory points), but can also have other effects. There are also Bonus Cards in the middle – equally available to both players. You can trade in three or four identical gems to gain a bonus card. Bonus cards have one-shot special powers and are worth extra points at the end of the game (if you don’t use them).

A game of Power Up! Jewel Thieves takes about 30 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

The Elephant Song Game Deck: Game of the Month for June 2015 · 6 June 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for June 2015 is The Elephant Song Game Deck. The Elephant Song Game Deck is a deck of cards you can play four different children’s games with. The games contain a good blend of strategy and luck. This makes them playable by very young children (three to four years old) while still being engaging for adults. They also employ what I call “stealth teaching” – They’re educational without being overtly educational.

The four games are:

  • Zoo-Nique: This game teaches same-different matching, comparison, and basic item counting from 0 to 5.
  • Monkey’s Uncle: This game teaches matching and creates a safe setting to experiment with sophisticated social behaviors like bluffing, honesty, and appropriate interactions.
  • It’s an Adventure!: This game teaches memory skills and deduction, explores safe risk-taking exploration, and can be used to teach fairly complex probability math.
  • El-e-phants! I like elephants!: This game teaches matching and memory, and creates a safe setting to explore bluffing, honesty, and appropriate interactions.

The card deck and games are inspired by Erich & Roseann Endres’ song: The Elephant Song – used with permission.

Each game takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Shapeshifting Simulacra: Game of the Month for May 2015 · 2 May 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for May 2015 is Shapeshifting Simulacra. Shapeshifting Simulacra is a quick-playing game with simultaneous secret action selection for two dueling wizards. Shapeshifting Simulacra involves bluffing, strategy, and little chance/luck in roughly equal measure. A game takes about 20 to 30 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Below/Above: Game of the Month for April 2015 · 1 April 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for April 2015 is Below/Above. Below/Above is a press-your-luck game for three to 10 players and 20-sided die. This, like the March 2015 Game of the Month, is a game I made in response to a request from Marcelo Figueroa for games he could share and play with large groups of 3rd graders and a d20. I hope y’all enjoy it!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Don't Drop The Ghost!: Game of the Month for March 2015 · 18 March 15

Don’t Drop The Ghost! is a quick-playing rules-light game for five to 20 players and a 20-sided die. If you can imagine Duck, Duck, Goose without anyone moving, you have a good idea of how DDTG! plays. I made this game in response to a request from Marcelo Figueroa for games he could share and play with large groups of 3rd graders and a d20. I hope y’all enjoy it!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Hierarchy: Game of the Month for August 2013 · 18 August 13

I did something I didn’t expect to do today: I posted a new Game of the Month: Hierarchy

Hierarchy is a game I’ve had floating around since 2005. It’s a highly interactive negotiation and voting game, built on top of a simple roll-and-move game, with a splash of player selected special player powers on top for spice. A game with 4 players takes 45 to 60 minutes to play.

Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Miscellaneous Halloween Thoughts... · 31 October 12

So it’s Halloween 2012. I’ve mentioned this on some other PNP sites: I plan to re-start the Game of the Month in January 2013. That’s a happy thing. Two games are in the pipe for publication – one as a board game, one as an iOS game. They’ll be my 4th and 5th published games. That’s a happy thing too.

So, games… For the past few years, I’ve kicked around an idea: I want to make a print-and-play game that you could give out to kids on Halloween. My design restrictions:

  • Must be Halloween-y
  • Must not require a randomizer that a typical trick-or-treater does not have. Using a die or a Poker deck is not valid.
  • Must be kid-friendly.
  • Must fit on one sheet of 8.5 × 11 paper. Double-sided is okay.

Then, because I wanted it, I added the following:

  • Players must “ante up” candy. If I win, I get the candy you anted up. If you win, you get the candy I put up.
  • Modularity: There are many different game boards or components, creating many different interactions.

The game I have so far meets a lot of these requirements. I’m most concerned about the complexity of the rules. I think a 12-year old can play it, but I’m not so sure about a 7-year old. The premise of the game is classic monsters fighting. (Yes, I know that conflict is an easy out.). Each sheet has the rules on one side, then a play sheet on the other side. Each monster has special powers. The really good ones require you to give candy to your opponent to activate.

I’m writing this from my iPad or I’d upload the game and link to it now. As it is, you’ll have to be patient. Perhaps I’ll put up a beta version in the near future. If I recall correctly, there are 8 different monsters with fairly distinctive play styles…

Happy Halloween!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming : novelties

Share Ideas [1]

Un-Sticky Notes: I'm sharing a secret tool with you... · 20 June 12

Hi There!

It’s been a while since I’ve been here. Have you missed me? I’ve missed you too.

Happily, I’ve brought you a gift. It’s a special tool I use when I’m feeling stuck. They’re called Un-Sticky Notes.

Un-Sticky Notes are cards designed to help you get past a mental block when designing a game. Print out and cut up the cards and keep them nearby when you’re designing. When you’re feeling flummoxed, draw a card and see where it takes you. Un-Sticky Notes target board game designers, but can apply to computer game designers as well as other creative projects.

Un-Sticky Notes owes its genesis in part to the Oblique Strategies deck.

Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: epiphanies : novelties

Share Ideas

MetalTalon Updated! · 4 February 12

Hi!

There’s a newer, better version of MetalTalon that is superior to the older version. If you like MetalTalon, I strongly recommend downloading and playing the new version.

You may also want the higher-resolution version of the new board, suitable for printing at significantly larger than 8.5” x 11”

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Randomizers, Meeples, and Metaphysics... Again! · 1 December 11

Howdy! I’ll be presenting on how to use practical philosophical tools to make better games (The same speech I gave at CTXNA in mid-November) at Nerd Nite Austin on December 7th. The other speakers will be presenting on Magic and Balloon Twisting.

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming : thought

Share Ideas [1]

Older | recent posts | recent comments |

July Game of the Month:

Power Up! Jewel Thieves banner

Power Up! Jewel Thieves: Game of the Month for July 2015 · 1 July 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for July 2015 – by guest designer Desirée Ward – is Power Up! Jewel Thieves. Power Up! Jewel Thieves is a game of resource gathering and allocation with dynamic player powers and shared set collection goals for two larcenous burglars. At the start of the game, you have a few power cubes and a small hand of power cards. Each power card offers a track of powers that escalate in efficacy as you power them up with power cubes. Card powers generally focus on gaining more or better power cubes or gems (victory points), but can also have other effects. There are also Bonus Cards in the middle – equally available to both players. You can trade in three or four identical gems to gain a bonus card. Bonus cards have one-shot special powers and are worth extra points at the end of the game (if you don’t use them).

A game of Power Up! Jewel Thieves takes about 30 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

The Elephant Song Game Deck: Game of the Month for June 2015 · 6 June 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for June 2015 is The Elephant Song Game Deck. The Elephant Song Game Deck is a deck of cards you can play four different children’s games with. The games contain a good blend of strategy and luck. This makes them playable by very young children (three to four years old) while still being engaging for adults. They also employ what I call “stealth teaching” – They’re educational without being overtly educational.

The four games are:

  • Zoo-Nique: This game teaches same-different matching, comparison, and basic item counting from 0 to 5.
  • Monkey’s Uncle: This game teaches matching and creates a safe setting to experiment with sophisticated social behaviors like bluffing, honesty, and appropriate interactions.
  • It’s an Adventure!: This game teaches memory skills and deduction, explores safe risk-taking exploration, and can be used to teach fairly complex probability math.
  • El-e-phants! I like elephants!: This game teaches matching and memory, and creates a safe setting to explore bluffing, honesty, and appropriate interactions.

The card deck and games are inspired by Erich & Roseann Endres’ song: The Elephant Song – used with permission.

Each game takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Shapeshifting Simulacra: Game of the Month for May 2015 · 2 May 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for May 2015 is Shapeshifting Simulacra. Shapeshifting Simulacra is a quick-playing game with simultaneous secret action selection for two dueling wizards. Shapeshifting Simulacra involves bluffing, strategy, and little chance/luck in roughly equal measure. A game takes about 20 to 30 minutes. Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Below/Above: Game of the Month for April 2015 · 1 April 15

The Invisible City Productions Game of the Month for April 2015 is Below/Above. Below/Above is a press-your-luck game for three to 10 players and 20-sided die. This, like the March 2015 Game of the Month, is a game I made in response to a request from Marcelo Figueroa for games he could share and play with large groups of 3rd graders and a d20. I hope y’all enjoy it!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Don't Drop The Ghost!: Game of the Month for March 2015 · 18 March 15

Don’t Drop The Ghost! is a quick-playing rules-light game for five to 20 players and a 20-sided die. If you can imagine Duck, Duck, Goose without anyone moving, you have a good idea of how DDTG! plays. I made this game in response to a request from Marcelo Figueroa for games he could share and play with large groups of 3rd graders and a d20. I hope y’all enjoy it!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Hierarchy: Game of the Month for August 2013 · 18 August 13

I did something I didn’t expect to do today: I posted a new Game of the Month: Hierarchy

Hierarchy is a game I’ve had floating around since 2005. It’s a highly interactive negotiation and voting game, built on top of a simple roll-and-move game, with a splash of player selected special player powers on top for spice. A game with 4 players takes 45 to 60 minutes to play.

Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Miscellaneous Halloween Thoughts... · 31 October 12

So it’s Halloween 2012. I’ve mentioned this on some other PNP sites: I plan to re-start the Game of the Month in January 2013. That’s a happy thing. Two games are in the pipe for publication – one as a board game, one as an iOS game. They’ll be my 4th and 5th published games. That’s a happy thing too.

So, games… For the past few years, I’ve kicked around an idea: I want to make a print-and-play game that you could give out to kids on Halloween. My design restrictions:

  • Must be Halloween-y
  • Must not require a randomizer that a typical trick-or-treater does not have. Using a die or a Poker deck is not valid.
  • Must be kid-friendly.
  • Must fit on one sheet of 8.5 × 11 paper. Double-sided is okay.

Then, because I wanted it, I added the following:

  • Players must “ante up” candy. If I win, I get the candy you anted up. If you win, you get the candy I put up.
  • Modularity: There are many different game boards or components, creating many different interactions.

The game I have so far meets a lot of these requirements. I’m most concerned about the complexity of the rules. I think a 12-year old can play it, but I’m not so sure about a 7-year old. The premise of the game is classic monsters fighting. (Yes, I know that conflict is an easy out.). Each sheet has the rules on one side, then a play sheet on the other side. Each monster has special powers. The really good ones require you to give candy to your opponent to activate.

I’m writing this from my iPad or I’d upload the game and link to it now. As it is, you’ll have to be patient. Perhaps I’ll put up a beta version in the near future. If I recall correctly, there are 8 different monsters with fairly distinctive play styles…

Happy Halloween!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming : novelties

Share Ideas [1]

Un-Sticky Notes: I'm sharing a secret tool with you... · 20 June 12

Hi There!

It’s been a while since I’ve been here. Have you missed me? I’ve missed you too.

Happily, I’ve brought you a gift. It’s a special tool I use when I’m feeling stuck. They’re called Un-Sticky Notes.

Un-Sticky Notes are cards designed to help you get past a mental block when designing a game. Print out and cut up the cards and keep them nearby when you’re designing. When you’re feeling flummoxed, draw a card and see where it takes you. Un-Sticky Notes target board game designers, but can apply to computer game designers as well as other creative projects.

Un-Sticky Notes owes its genesis in part to the Oblique Strategies deck.

Enjoy!

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: epiphanies : novelties

Share Ideas

MetalTalon Updated! · 4 February 12

Hi!

There’s a newer, better version of MetalTalon that is superior to the older version. If you like MetalTalon, I strongly recommend downloading and playing the new version.

You may also want the higher-resolution version of the new board, suitable for printing at significantly larger than 8.5” x 11”

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming

Share Ideas

Randomizers, Meeples, and Metaphysics... Again! · 1 December 11

Howdy! I’ll be presenting on how to use practical philosophical tools to make better games (The same speech I gave at CTXNA in mid-November) at Nerd Nite Austin on December 7th. The other speakers will be presenting on Magic and Balloon Twisting.

— Jonathan A Leistiko :: gaming : thought

Share Ideas [1]

Copyright 1999 - 2009 Invisible City Productions