Bee Lives – Beeginning a New Game

First player board design for bee lives

We recently began work on the game “Bee Lives: We Will Only Know Summer” as Hit ‘Em With a Shoe’s first product.  This particular game is something that I have been thinking about for a while.  As a beekeeper, game maker and educator I wanted to create something that a wide variety of people could enjoy yet also serve, as needed, in an educational setting.  After running through many iterations in my head and on virtual paper, I finally settled on what is becoming Bee Lives.  The goal is to create a medium weight euro style game focused around resource management and worker placement mechanics.  Ideally, focusing things in this way will give players an accurate representation, in game form, of what it is like to be a beehive in the wild.  I’ve put the first iteration of rules down and now its just time to make some pieces so we can actually begin testing the game!

First game pieces for Bee Lives First player board design for bee lives

I would not call my self a visual artist by any means, so the first game pieces and player board I designed were focused to be functional.  I cut out several bees, some hives and varroa mite disease tokens to use in the game and then also created a player board to use.  The player board will effectively serve as your hive, with all of your internal actions and orders for your bees take place.  Not pictured are the hexagon tiles that represent the external world.

Next steps are to try out the game and begin tweaking everything!  This process is going to take many forms.  I am shooting for a game with a solo mode suitable for up to 4 players, so I need to test all of those varieties.  Luckily, for now, I can do a lot of this testing on my own.  Time to get to it!

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