Concept


A PvP duelling card game where alliances are forged and tested. You're to become the  most notorious bandit in West Springs. Use wit, diplomacy and deceit to win!


Project Details

Platform:

Genre:

Engine & Tools:

Development:

Team Composition:

Card Print & Play + App

PvP Duelling Card Game

Affinity Designer & Publisher

Two weeks

Original version - 3 Game Designers


My Responsibilities

Card System Design

I set up the gameplay and rulebook, enabling the team to focus on making the various cards and game loop.

Art Direction

With purchased graphical assets, I set up the cards look and feel. Art not available was custom made.

Companion App

With the RE:Release of Lemon Squeezers, I implemented a companion app.




Card System Design


Lemon Squeezers has an alternating two-phase loop. Players collect cards and prepare their attack, and finally enter a showdown. With the added event cards, additional gameplay was added.


Card Play

There are 5 types of playing cards that shape the core loop of Lemon Squeezers.

Troopsunits that are deployed and deal damage.

Weapons the tool that troops use to deal damage.

Defensiveequipment that mitigate damage.

Functionalequipment that instigate mechanics.

Combat antebellum & postbellum to change the flow of battle.


Problem – How do they challenge each other?


Weapons need to be used by the Troops, or they won't do any damage, and vice versa. The player can also equip one weapon to do base damage with. The systems are easy to understand, but was it fun and engaging?


Solution – Make some trouble!


It was all in the combinations! Damage could be up to tripled if the player played their cards correctly. However, all of this could be undone if their opponent did the same. That is where the event cards came in.


With the later added event cards, the gameplay landscape changed drastically and became much more dynamic — and competitive!


Playing Field


Each players field had the following spaces for each card: Troop, Troop Weapon, Equipment, Extra Concealed card (of any type), Equipped Player Weapon and up to two Event cards.


Phase One — Stockpile


The players collect cards and plan their attack. Here, all the diplomacy and betrayal starts cooking. While social deduction initially wasn't part of the core design, it was a welcomed surprise that was iterated on.


I wanted people to actually point to the person that they wanted to attack. This was in order to fascilitate interpersonal play and diplomacy.

Phase Two — Showdown


The showdown between the players, where I wanted to simulate a quickdraw and shootout between rival gangs. All card in play are displayed and the damage is counted.



Art Direction - Wild West


The language, images, and even mechanics were designed in the Wild West theme. The images were previously purchased, and any assets not readily available, I made in Adobe Illustrator.


As part of the overhaul, I remade all cards in full print-grade quality in Affinity Publisher.


Companion App


Since the prototype was made in PlayingCards.io, the level of quality was not up to the standard I wanted. That was one of the reasons for the Remake.


With the remake came the companion app to help players keep track of player HP, situations and throw dice for RNG events.


My Takeaways


There is a lot of entertainment and valuable information in making a prototype using a card games platform. In some cases, it's quicker for testing than some game engines.


More importantly, I learned that mechanics can be tried and tested using card game mechanics before testing them in the game engine.