Role: Solo designer
Duration: October 2012
Hyper✶Drive is a two- to six-player board game in which players are competing with one another to be the first to reach the center of the board and take control of the hyperdrive. Players alter the state of the board and their ship with distortion technology to advance or to harass their opponents using Distortion Cards from a shared deck.
Hyper✶Drive is meant to be a game that can be learned and played quickly. The rules are extremely simple to learn, but have enough strategic depth to them that players can develop their own strategies. Like Apples to Apples or We Didn’t Playtest This At All, Hyper✶Drive can be played for a few rounds without being a time sink. There are also alternate rules with Hyper✶Drive that add a variety of game modes to spice things up a bit such as survival mode. In this alternate method of playing, a player doesn’t win when they reach the center of the board. Instead, when there is one player left that hasn’t reached the center, they are eliminated. A new round then starts without that player, and the game continues until only one person remains.
Distortion Cards and Movement
Distortion Cards are used to influence players and the game board. There are two types: Distortion Signatures and Distortion Fields. When a player uses a Distortion Signature, they change their own color to that displayed on the card. When a player uses a Distortion Field, they place the appropriate number and color of tiles on the board, as displayed on the card.
When a player reaches the movement phase of their turn, they may choose to move or not. If a player does decide to move, they can travel along any number of tiles in an unbroken line, so long as they meet the color requirements for all of the tiles they wish to pass over. Any player can travel over white tiles, regardless of color, and if a player is either of the colors displayed on a dual-colored tile, it is a legal move for them.
Hyper✶Drive was the first board game I designed since starting college, and I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do at first. I knew that I wanted to call it Hyper✶Drive for some reason, and after a few failed ideas, I came up with switching colors to move on a board. Then came the idea that the players were controlling ships to escape a dangerous area of space. After rejecting that I settled with the idea that players would be controlling scouting vessels searching for advanced technology in the far reaches of space. To introduce an interesting way of changing the board and player status, I came up with the Distortion Cards which were well-received in testing. As a first serious board game project, I think that Hyper✶Drive