Gamer Deck 1: Mechanics is a deck of cards recently funded on Kickstarter. According to the designer, it is more of card system than a deck. A card system has multiple elements in the cards, so they can be used many different ways.
Gamer Deck 1 features 4 suits, numbers, dice, and each card names a unique game mechanic. Game mechanics are specific components to game play. For example, the format of the game (deduction, fighting, betting), how you interact with other players (traitor, voting, trading), board type (grid movement, exploration, building), and card types (bluffing, set collection).
The designer was kind enough to send us a deck to test out. Here’s four different ways we came up with to use the deck!
1. Play Classic Card Games
Gamer Deck also serves as a regular deck of 52 cards with Ace to King in four suits, so you can play games such as poker, rummy, thirteen, go fish and more.
2. Teach About Game Mechanics
I work in educational games, and we even host a competition each year for students to design their own (math) game. So I could see using this deck of cards in preparation for a game design project. First play a game together, or create a list of games you have played together before. Then, ask students to use the cards to describe each of the different games.
3. Get Inspiration for New Card and Board Games
Got designer’s block? Like writer’s block, sometimes adding limitations can help you overcome the block and force you to be more creative. First, randomly pick 3-4 cards. Then, dot down some ideas on what kind of game could incorporate all of these game mechanics. Or, if you are testing out a very new game, and something isn’t working quite right, looking through the cards or randomly choosing a couple could provide the inspiration to try out a different game mechanic in the game.
4. Design and Play a New Card Game
You could even use the cards themselves to play your newly designed card game!
Check out the spotlight video on Gamer Deck 1: