Legacying: Hacking RISK Legacy mechanics for other games

Dominion-Legacy
I loves me some RISK: Legacy, as do the Diana Jones Awards. Lyndsay Peters and Logan Bonner got into the habit of playing Dominion Legacy. And no discussion of destructible game objects would be complete without mentioning Kevin Allen Jr's Sweet Agatha, which predates RISK: Legacy by several years.

I wondered aloud when larger studios would actually start picking up on this idea in non-RISK games. Sure enough, Asmadi stepped up to the plate with We Didn't Play This: Legacies. As Chris Cieslik mentions in the video, writing things in Sharpie is fun!

Much like deck-building became the hot mechanic following Dominon's release, I continue to wonder how Legacy mechanics might be used in future big budget or indie games. In particular, how those mechanics could be used by smaller, independent outfits like my own. I'll discuss my own ideas in a future post, but for now let's Legacy some existing games.

Scrabble: Legacy
Keep a Legacy document in the game box. (This can simply be the game board, the inside of the game box or a proper sheet of paper.) At the end of each game, each player writes one of the words currently in play. Any words on this list are worth half points in any future game.

Winner's Privilege: Add a DL, DW, TL, or TW to any empty space on the board. A single row or column can only have up to three of each

Carcassonne: Legacy
At the end of each game, each player chooses any tile with their meeple still on it. Each player may write their initials on a field, on the road, in a castle or on a cloister. In future games, a player's initials count as a meeple for that player. Each feature may only have one set of initials, but a single tile can have several initials on separate features.

Winner's Privilege: You may initial two separate features of your chosen tile.

Ticket to Ride: Legacy
At the end of the game, the players choose any non-wild card in their hand. Each player draws a star on their chosen card. Any time this card is used to build a track, it is worth one extra point. A card can have up to six stars.

Winner's Privilege: You may initial a track space on the board. In future games, that track requires one fewer cards for you to build. Each space can only have one set of initials, but the full line may have several.

What other games can you Legacy?

23 comments:

  1. Hmm...tell me more of this Dominion Legacy...

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  2. Is it really TTR legacy if you don't get to write on the board?

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  3. Dominion Legacy is pretty simple. At the end of the game, each player can write (in Sharpie) a name or title on any one card that was in his or her deck. The winner of the game gets to title one additional card. Whenever someone plays a legacy card, he or she has to call it by this new title. As an optional rule, you could have the first player to buy a Province get to name it too. There isn't any game effect yet. One off the top of my head: Use blank cards to make a victory point card that grows for each legacy card in your deck.

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  4. Most any of the "building" card games such as San Juan, Race for the Galaxy, Bohnanza, 7 Wonders, etc. If you keep the Legacy reward simple, maybe 1 vp or a cost reduction. Just having fun with the cards is worth it in many ways, especially the Victory cards in Dominion. Curses may be more fun, though maybe not as family friendly.

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  5. Check the Winner's Privilege. The winner gets to write on the board.

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  6. See Logan's comment above.

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  7. Even without the game effects, you hit on a valuable and fun aspect of Legacy: Simply naming stuff it fun. Even if there's no mechanical effect, having that permanent impact on a world is really satisfying.

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  8. Definitely. The nature of geography, discovery and labels are very compatible with Legacy.

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  9. The Legacy model has been used in computer strategy games. I recall the campaign mode of Warlords III, for example, where after each campaign map you could permanently upgrade one of your units in one way for future maps (reduce construction time, increase attack strength, etc)

    So, OGRE comes to mind--allow the winner to upgrade permanently one of the GEV's, missile tanks, etc.

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  10. Monopoly, clearly. Change property costs or rents charged by a particular player or for all players, possibly.

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  11. Civilization seems made for this. I think I could write a book on how to implement that.

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  12. For winning in Ticket to Ride: Legacy, you could also add a sign-the-board privilege of getting one extra card at deal time, but a maximum of three extra cards or you might get an unstoppable juggernaut.

    Or, hmmm, you get 4 cards or as many cards as you have signed the board, whichever is higher. Allow ten times to sign.

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  13. Nice! Computers clearly have an advantage in recording and rendering persistent game effects, heck even the vanity of an arcade high-score leaderboard could be considered a prototypical Legacy mechanic.

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  14. Definitely. I'd love to make some kind of cartography themed games that is ALL about naming the unnamed.

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  15. Board signing is a killer app for board games. It's nice having a light mechanical effect from a leaderboard.

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  16. Oooh. You could also create alternate paths between unconnected spaces.

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  17. A few of us in Oakland have been talking about Monopoly Legacy for months, but always with the theme of the housing market blowup. Which has made the idea tous a joke and not actually something we want to play.

    I kinda dig Daniel's idea, especially if it's a Toll road, and we theme it as eminent domain. Could also permanently add houses to properties, or add "crack houses" -- houses that make the property worth less in rent. But only to properties you own.

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  18. Another possible benefit - Named cards become worth Victory Points equal to their cost (which even on VP cards is less than cost), but only to the player that originally named them?

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  19. Clever! I dig it.

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  20. Toll roads = brilliant.

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  21. Is it really a blog post if someone doesn't comment without noticing something obvious that was already in the post?

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  22. The genius about this is that you could convince anyone to play and then watch them get sucked in to the amazingness of Legacy play. What if instead of Monopoly, though, you Legacy'd Monopoly Junior. It's a much faster game (and in my opinion, more fun). So rather than playing 2 hours to make a single change to the board, you could play a few games in that time and watch your changes take effect

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  23. Give it a shot with Monopoly Deal, too.

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Daniel Solis
Art Director by Day. Game Designer by Night.