Fleshing out the idea

Feb 23, 2018

The idea started with what I find annoying on public transport: interactions with fellow commuters.

Remember the elbow wrestling with your neighbour, farting, leaky earphones, and so forth?

Apart from that, I have no idea about the character(s), the story, the game mechanic (and I’m not even thinking about whether this is a “device” game or an analogue game involving cards, paper, pencils, etc). No idea about all of that.

This post starts exploring those concepts.

Start simple

Starting simple for me means not doing any coding, and first “talking to customers” so to speak. Almost everyone I know has done the public transport commute, so they can relate. Almost all of those people are casual gamers too (in part due to the commute!).

However, not everyone is a board gamer, or a RPG/card gamer. We’ve all tried a bit of pen and pencil as kids (Tic Tac Toe, anyone?).

Let’s see if any of these analogue “platforms” emerges if I start building out those infractions I mentioned earlier (elbow wrestling, eating stinky food on the bus, etc)


On first thought, some infractions might happen inside a vehicle, e.g. on the train: someone farting beside you. Some might happen just outside of the vehicle, e.g. on the platform: someone shoves you out of the way to get on the train first.

If I limit the game to on-vehicle, I might limit the possibilities of game play, so it’d be a good idea to write down as many of these infractions as possible to see where the bulk of the fun might lie.

Here is an initial list (embedded Google doc), grouped by classes like whether the infraction infrnges on personal space (proximity), noise, smell, etc.


I’ll try and think up a few more of these, but this is a good starting point. It gives me a good idea of the type of “attacks” that can be executed in the game, which gives me a better idea of NPC or playable characters, whether is PvE or PvP.

I’m already quite exicted to think about possible storylines for this commuting adventure, but for now I’ll try and come up with the simplest way to “play” with what we have.

An initial idea is Magic-style cards. A card could be “nail varnish” of class “smell”. It could carry medium attack points (since it stings the sinuses quite a bit), and since the smell hangs around quite a bit, it could have high “toughness” too. I can also be a “range” weapon, because it affects everyone in close proximity. (The smell starts losing potency when you’re further away.)

Stay chooned.