The evolution of the project
Sometime in October, 1998
- My mom and I are going through catalogs and spot "Make-your-own-opoly". It sounds like a shoe-in for Winter Camp, except for the price: $34.95 a copy. A seed is sown
Sometime in November, 1998
- Discussion has continued and I'm now pretty much resolved on making Winter Campopoly my gift of choice this year.
My mom gets involved by digging our gameboard out of some storage location so I can use it as source material -- I've decided to basically make a straight copy but rename things; that way I don't have to worry about game balance (not that I think Monotony is all that balanced to begin with).
My dad gets involved by cutting a lot of hotels for me. I haven't told him that I want cabins (of course, I didn't ask for the hotels either). The cabins in the game will most likely look like hotels anyhow.
November 9, 1998
- After getting Tim Hunt to make some copies for my dad, I realize that he could probably help me out with my WinterCampopoly dream. I draft him a note asking about making color copies and he assures me that he can definitely make as many as he wants. His maximum color page size is 11 x 17 inches.
In my reply, I try to figure out how many sheets it will take for each game. I also lay out what becomes most of the properties
November 29, 1998
- After making no progress for weeks, I suddenly spring into action and by the end of the day I have all the deeds and the two halves of the board laid out. I save them all as PDF (Adobe Acrobat) files and mail them to Tim.
The same day, I buy a three pack of foam board, figuring I can make four boards out of it. I also grab 500 business cards in white and 500 in black, figuring there are about 40 or 50 cards of each type per game (note: there are sixteen)
November 30, 1998
- I realize I made a mistake on houses/hotels vs. tents/cabins and mail Tim a corrected sheet of deeds. I ask him to make 6 or 8 copies.
Being way more efficient than I am, Tim drops enough copies to make twelve complete sets off at my house that night. There is much oohing and aahing
December 3, 1998
- Christmas is approaching and I haven't done much of anything on the game since Tim printed the copies. I wind up returning half the cards and buying two more packs of foam board and some poster board to make game boxes with.
December 4, 1998
- Game pieces are the order of the day. My goal is to get things that are Winter Camp-like without going broke. Doll furniture seems like a natural until I see the prices ($2.49 for a rolling pin). Luckily, Michael's craft shop has this cool section of wooden shapes. I wind up with bowls, canoe paddles, butter churns, and rolling pins. I also grab some miniature Christmas gifts and some popcorn garland.
Later that day, I make up the Traditional and Unconventional cards. I decide to include eight variant cards (four of each type) and make up some new cards.
December 5, 1998
- Looking through an Oriental Trading catalog, I spot snowflake jacks. They look pretty small and would be cool game tokens. I phone in an order
That night, I finally assemble the first two game boards. The first one is okay, but not great. I didn't pay enough attention to the center line, so when it folds, it doesn't match up.
The second one, with the benefit of learning from mistakes on the first one, is pretty cool. It also takes only about 30 minutes, about half what the first one took (practice is indeed a wonderful thing).
I call Jeff up about binders and taunt him slightly about the game, pointing out that this year will be a banner year for trivia, but not telling him why. Of course, with the WinterCampopoly game and the Autograph project both scheduled for unveiling at or near camp, Mark--> is definitely going to have a field day.
I decide that some of my variant cards are pretty weak and try to think of some new ones. Several thoughts occur to me and finally I decide that there must be something cooler than what I've thought of so far. I send a note to the Men In Black, a gaming group I'm part of and ask them for suggestions
December 6, 1998
- I decide that this project might need some documentation (although I have no idea why) and so I create this page.
I cut rough boards and assemble them, then glue the two halves on. It takes me about 4 hours and I go through 9 glue sticks and a roll of paper tape before it's over. The boards mostly look pretty good (a few have flaws, but that gives them character <grin>
December 7, 1998
- Following an awesome episode of Buffy, I cut the boards to their finished size and tape all the seams. I'm more or less home free now; the only truly hard thing left is building a box to hold this stuff and coming up with a cover for the game.
December 15, 1998
- Laid out the money
December 20, 1998
- Printed the money then spent several hours cutting and sorting
Laid out the prototype for the tray.
December 21, 1998
- Reworked the tray to better fit the money
December 22-3, 1998
- Worked with my dad to build the twelve money trays
December 24, 1998
- Nothing like being early (not that I would know, but it's what I've heard):
Completed work on the trays (mostly sanding)
Cut about 300 tents and about 200 cabins
Printed the backs of the deeds and the Traditional and Unconventional cards
Assembled the various game components with help from my mother. This included designing and cutting the lid, counting the tents and cabins, and putting all the pieces together
December 25, 1998
- Gift wrapping