Near the beginning of the semester I found out that one of my some of my friends were going out to ice cream, so I sent my roommate a text asking if I could come as well. I got no response. He apparently did intend to respond, but forgot to hit send on the message he wrote. I went to bed early thinking that my friends were ignoring me, and he didn’t ask my why I didn’t come because I was already asleep when he got back. About a week later the conversation turned to the ice cream run, and only then did everyone involved find out that my roommate forgot to hit send.
I want to try to make a game that simulates this feeling of being left out for seemingly no reason, but try to do it in a way that is still fun to play.
The best way to do this in my opinion is to make some sort of hidden role game with multiple layers. Each player will have a role visible to everyone (a color, shape, or something similar), and a hidden goal that only they know. Hidden goals would affect things like how players interact with players that have specific roles in each round. One of the hidden roles would be “The Initiator” or something, who would be the person that is inviting people to go do an activity (like getting ice cream, for example). The game takes place over multiple rounds, or “evenings,” with the goal being to try and “hang out” with friends each evening.
Everyone would be given some time to look at their hidden role and colors of everyone else, then each player would simultaneously pick two people to try and “hang out” with. If two people both select each other, they become a group. The two people “The Initiator” picks are automatically in a group with them, regardless of if they returned the pick or not. Points might be assigned for how many people are in a group, though you might just get points if you are in a group at all. There might be a hidden role that tries not to get in a group or something, but we’ll have to see how testing goes.
This idea is partially inspired by the games of Mafia and One Night Ultimate Werewolf, though without the social deduction aspects of those games. The idea of having two players have to choose each other for things to happen is also inspired by the Jackbox Party Pack 4‘s game Monster Dating Monster. I am also inspired by Yoko Ono’s “White Chess,” and how it makes it very hard to tell who is on what side. I want to try and recreate that feeling in this game.