What does your Year 10 do with their spare time? Play a sport? Attend a club? Learn a new skill?
We're guessing that there won't be many too many teenagers who are working with Dad to design a strategic board game and had it shortlisted at the UK Games Expo at the Birmingham NEC. Well here's a story about how Magna Academy Poole student Josh Painter did just that.
Josh has been busy working with Dad to design a family strategy board game they have called Colour Guards. Together, they have attended a number of venues to play-test and show the game, culminating in that Expo 'Best Strategic Game' shortlisting at the NEC in Birmingham.
Josh's Dad, Mark, told us:
"It has been great fun and we have both learnt a lot from the experience. For instance, Josh and I spent some time at the Barclays Eagle Lab looking at prototyping and 3D-printing the pieces for the game. Josh has also impressed me with his confidence and his competitiveness by enthusiastically taking on the role of demonstrating the game to the public. These demos were for everyone ranging from small children to serious gamers."
Here are just some of the feedback comments those playtesters gave in reaction to trying the game:
Easy to grasp and simple to learn yet still containing massive strategic potential!
I'm a huge fan of the fact it lets me set up the board the way I want - it adds hugely to the re-play value.
I have almost as much fun setting things up as I do playing the game!
My kids loved it!
I liked the fact that the game play can develop at a different pace depending on your approach.
I love that it encourages strategic thinking while remaining so accessible and easy to understand.
We were intrigued by this and so we asked Josh to come by and tell us more. Here's what Josh explained to us:
"So, Dad and I describe Colour Guards as a 'fun and exciting dice based board game of tactics and strategy for 2-4 players'. We believe so much in this idea that we have submitted a LEGO version to the ‘LEGO Ideas’ online forum."
You can visit Mark and Josh's submission here:
Josh told us:
"Using only authentic LEGO brand parts and your imagination, you create a game board with a fresh and new scenery layout for every new game. This unique aspect of Colour Guards means that your game experience will be different every time you play! The game has been extensively playtested and has a very broad appeal – boys and girls, young and old, both serious and occasional gamers. It's ideal for players of different ages and so it's a perfect way for families to spend time together. It also provides a fun form of mental maths practice as players choose how to allocate a maximum total dice roll of 20.
"Ultimately, the objective of Colour Guards is to capture your opponents’ Colour Guard and bring their Flag back to your base, whilst at the same time trying to defend your own Flag!"
Josh explained that the submission to LEGO was only accepted a few days ago and that they would love to recruit 10,000 supporters on the website to encourage LEGO to adopt the game.
What a great interview that was. It seems we have quite an entrepreneur here in our Magna Academy Year 10 population! If you would like to know more about the game then please follow the link above. If you would like to add your click to the Support button there then, who knows... one day, when Grandad is sleeping off the wine and turkey and your relatives are suggesting another Christmas game of Colour Guards, you'll be able to casually namedrop the game's authors and mention that it was your button-click that helped bring that game to life. There's nothing quite like a bit of showing off over the Christmas Day washing up!