Keeping Score

One of the problems that kept rearing its head during the development of Who’s for Dinner? was the issue of scoring, or rather the keeping track of player’s scores. Initial playtest versions had players either using pen and paper or poker chips to keep track. But it always bothered me and eventually I had to make a rather radical change to the game in order to solve it.

In earlier versions of the game, both a Fire and a Pot gave you points. But because every time a player is eaten they must have a Fire and a Pot, they really added nothing to the score — no-one was going to win because of the points from a Fire in other words. So I reduced their value to zero. Also, the communal spice rack idea was beneficial to the gameplay but divorced the scored points from the cards that gave the points. Since the cards were out of play, I realized everyone could have their own little spice rack (scoring pile). That meant that players simply kept their cards that gave them points in a distinct pile and the was no record keeping needed. This did change Clean Hands and Fork & Knife into one-time benefits instead of an ongoing thing, but that was a small sacrifice to get much cleaner gameplay and no record-keeping.

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