139 - Monster Drawings with the Boys


Boys and I did some drawings of monsters today. Apparently the more green the monster the more of a bad guy it is. I took this as an opportunity to tell Oliver that the color of one's skin does not dictate if they are good or not. Lessons everywhere, I guess.

The top-left one was our collaboration effort. Oliver did the blue, Jasper did the purple, and I drew the tiny faces on this monkey monster.

136 - Bear Deduction Game


I've been thinking about how to do a deduction game without it being Clue. I also wanted to see if I could make it a solitaire experience, which are easier for me to test.

The original intent was that some cards would have multiple clues on it and you may draw a clue that you already have. I couldn't figure out how to include logic and problem solving as an advantage in this scenario. Because the goal would be chosen at the beginning and from the same deck of cards, pulling cards from the same deck would not reduce the choices available if multiples existed.

It's a somewhat difficult thing to figure out and I'm still thinking about it.

I did come up with some rules for a multiplayer version where players negotiate with each other, in any ways, clue exchange. "I'll trade you 2 of these Location cards for 1 of your People cards," as an example. If you follow each other's progress, you may notice that they have more ideas about which People/Weapon/Location cards the goal aren't, so card trading requests aren't always measured 1:1 (i.e. if I know 4 People, then finding out the final 1 is worth a lot more than if I only knew 1 People).


135 - Scavenger Dice


I thought it would be neat putting together some d6 that had suggestions (colors, foods, animals, etc.) that players could roll and then play a scavenger hunt with. So for example: find 4 items that are big and purple.

Then the domain for scavenging could change. Maybe it's a scavenger hunt in real life. Maybe it's from a stack of old magazines and they have to find it in the photos. Maybe it's words they write down on a pad of paper. So many items!

132 - Mantis & Tiger Tiles


24 2" x 2" squares cut out and glued onto 12 wood tiles. The game actually works out pretty well for what it is (some randomness, but current game state is perfect information). It's lightweight.

The end product will be these same 2" x 2" wooden squares, but with nicely printed stickers from Stickermule.

I wonder if I can get a solo play version so I can send it over to Every Night is Game night. Hm!

131 - Sadie Cat and Mao Origin Story

I've broken this down into three versions: single paragraph boilerplate version, single page synopsis, and the somewhat detailed chronicle of their start. Right now a lot of it feels coincidental and that they "are special" and "are chosen" to save the universe. I feel like accepting this fate and then investing in the individual adventures is probably a better bet.

Makes me think of Supernatural and how Sam and Dean Winchester happen to be "the ones" who basically are the answer to "how do we fix this demon problem?". Anyway. Here we go!

Boilerplate / Single Paragraph
There once lived a brave and clever dog named Sadie Cat. She had a cat friend named Mao. In a strange twist of fate, a botched hang glider ride sent them into a secret cave that chronicled the creation of the universe. Unbeknownst to them, they had entered the fabled Honeycomb Portal and became the guardians in charge of saving the universe one honeycomb at a time.

*        *        *

Simple Version
On the mystical island of Moorefield there lived a clever dog named Sadie Cat. She was very brave and had a very big heart. She lived in a house on the beach by the mountains.

Sadie Cat had an orange cat friend named Mao. He was very confident and always made her laugh. He lived in a house on the mountaintop surrounded by dead trees.

One day, Mao invited Sadie Cat to visit him at his house. He had recently purchased a hang glider and wanted to show it to somebody.

When Sadie Cat and Mao were flying through the air, a huge gust of wind blew them off course. Sadie Cat saved them and landed in a cave on the side of the mountain.

Sadie Cat and Mao walked deep into the cave and learned that this cave was special. It showed the creation of the universe. They reached the end of the cave where there was a big honeycomb door blocking their way.

Sadie Cat and Mao opened the door and were teleported to a special golden throne room where a queen bee told them about how the universe was made. She also told them that it was falling now apart and needed saving. Sadie Cat and Mao were special. The cave had chosen to reveal itself to them. It would take a long time to fix, but Sadie Cat and Mao were up to the challenge.

It has been said that even the largest castle begins with a single grain of sand.

Sadie Cat and Mao are now our only hope to save our universe, one honeycomb at a time.

*    *    *

Regular / Lengthy Version
On the mystical island of Moorefield there lived a clever dog named Sadie Cat. She was very brave and had a very big heart. She lived in a house on the beach by the mountains.

Sadie Cat had an orange cat friend named Mao. He was quite a confident cat and was always able to make her laugh. He lived in a house on the mountaintop surrounded by dead trees.

They had known each other for many years and always made an effort to see each other regularly.

One fateful day, Mao invited Sadie Cat to visit him at his house. He had recently purchased a hang glider and wanted to show it to somebody.

Sadie Cat packed up some supplies in her backpack, put on her favorite green jacket, and headed up the mountain to see her friend. She walked across the beach, through the woods, and up the path to Mao’s house.

When she got there she saw a beautiful rainbow colored hang glider sitting at the edge of the mountain.

“Wow!” Sadie Cat exclaimed. “That’s beautiful!”

“It is, isn’t it?” Mao proudly said.

“Do you know how to use it?” Sadie Cat asked.

“How tricky could it be?” Mao replied.

Turns out it’s actually very tricky when the unexpected happens!

As Sadie Cat and Mao were gliding through the air, a large gust of wind came out of nowhere and pushed their hang glider sideways. This caused Mao’s scarf to cover his eyes and cause a large amount of screaming from his mouth. As they lost control, their hang glider started flying towards some very spiky mountains sticking out of the water.

Sadie Cat took a deep breath and looked around. She saw a cave opening on the side of the mountain, one she had never seen before. With one final push, she leaned and turned the hang glider toward the cave all the while Mao was screaming his head off.

While a little rough, Sadie Cat and Mao landed into the cave safely.

“Have you been here before?” Sadie Cat asked.

“Nope. I didn’t even know this cave existed,” Mao replied. He looked over the edge. “Whew. That’s a steep drop. I guess we’ll have to find another way out.”

Sadie Cat nodded and they proceeded deeper into the cave.

As the two intrepid explorers continued, Sadie Cat noticed more and more symbols and drawings on the walls of the cave. There were a lot of honeycomb shapes and bees the same size of buildings. She even noticed little figures that looked like dogs and cats. A line was drawn throughout all the drawings, connecting them, all leading down the cave into the distance.

Eventually Sadie Cat and Mao reached the end of the cave. A large honeycomb shaped door stood in front of them, dark, and cracked.

“I guess this is our way out?” Mao asked.

“Seems like it,” Sadie Cat replied. She put her hand on the door.

“How old do you think this is?” Mao asked. He put his hand on the door.

Suddenly there was a rumble and the door began to glow. Sadie Cat and Mao tried to remove their hands from the door, but their hands were stuck. The stone started to melt and creeped up over their fingers and up their arms. Mao tried to swipe at the glowing mass crawling up past his scarf, but it stuck onto his other hand.

“Sadie Cat! What’s happening?” Mao yelled.

“I don’t know!” Sadie Cat replied. She braced her foot against the door and started to pull. Her foot was now stuck, the glowing door now creeping up her leg.

“I’m scared!” Mao cried. Sadie Cat reached over and grabbed Mao by the shoulder.

“I know! I’m scared too! But we’re in this together!” Sadie Cat replied.

“Don’t let go!” Mao yelled.

The door melted over all of their bodies and swallowed them whole.

It was warm. A golden light surrounded them as they landed onto the hard floor of a large, majestic room. At one end they saw a large honeycomb shaped door. Had they just come through this door? On the other end they saw a throne with a giant queen bee hovering above it.

“Welcome Sadie Cat and Mao,” the queen bee buzzed.

“How do you know who we are?” Mao asked quickly.

“We’ve been expecting you for a long time. The cave couldn’t have appeared to you at a better time,” the queen bee replied.

“What do you mean?” Sadie Cat was confused.

“All worlds are connected to each other through our life force,” the queen bee started. “What you may have seen as just honey is actually what bonds all of our worlds together. What you may not have noticed is that this balance is starting to become, well, unbalanced.”

“I had heard something about the bees on the news,” Sadie Cat remarked. “Is that the same thing?”

“It is a symptom of what’s going on, but yes. We need special guardians capable of fixing these issues and restoring balance to the worlds,” the queen bee said. She spun around in a small circle and a large honeycomb shaped portal opened up in front of Sadie Cat and Mao.

“Are we supposed to go into that thing? I don’t want to do that,” Mao complained.

“You two were chosen for very special reasons. Each of you possess qualities and skills that can bring balance back. You can help fix our worlds and our universe!” the queen bee exclaimed.

“How long will this take? How many things do we have to fix?” Sadie Cat asked.

“That I do not know. The Honeycomb Portal will lead you to where you’re supposed to go, who you are supposed to help, what you are supposed to fix. While I must stay here to create and protect the life force, only you can correct its path,” the queen replied.

Sadie Cat peeked into the Honeycomb Portal. It looked endless.

“And what if we don’t do it?” Mao asked.

“That’s your choice and everything may be fine for a little bit of time. Nothing may be different today or tomorrow. Maybe even 10 years from now things will feel the same, but there will be a tipping point and that’s when it will come crashing down,” the queen bee paused. “Will you help us?”

Mao pulled Sadie Cat aside and started making nervous movements with his hands, but no words were coming out of his mouth.

“I know you’re scared, Mao,” Sadie Cat said. “But even the largest castle started with a single grain of sand, right?”

Sadie Cat looked over her shoulder. Mao sighed aloud and then nodded his head. Sadie Cat smiled and took Mao by the hand and said quietly, “we can do this.”

Before Mao could change his mind, Sadie Cat jumped into the Honeycomb Portal with Mao in tow. With this decision, the two of them started their lifelong adventure to saving the universe, one honeycomb at a time.