Trekking the World
Trekking the World
Gleaming monuments and sunrise vistas await your arrival as you traverse the globe to experience its many wonders. Will you explore ancient ruins deep in the jungle, or go wild on a savanna safari? Build your bucket list of destinations and take a whirlwind tour to visit them all — but hurry, your fellow travelers might just beat you there!
In this sequel to Underdog Games' Trekking the National Parks, you'll explore the globe, touring famous destinations and collecting souvenirs. It's a family game featuring stunning art of locations across the world.
Building out a sequel to an evergreen title is a tricky process. Charlie Bink, the game's designer, had already built a wonderful core game, and spent a long time analyzing how to encourage the player behaviors he wanted. Taking on a project like this meant testing the game with family audiences as well as digging in with industry professionals to gather insights on product iterations.
In particular, we looked very closely at the scoring of the game — making sure that each game came to a satisfying end.
- Playtest Coordination and Analysis
- Gameplay Streamlining
- Content Design
- Blind Testing
Case Study: Scoring Complexity Reduction
One part of Trekking the World that changed as a result of Brieger Development's involvement is its new endgame scoring system. The original draft of the game had souvenirs scoring similarly to stones in the 2nd edition of Trekking the National Parks: each souvenir you picked up was worth 1 point, and at the end of the game, you compared how many you'd collected of each type. The player(s) with the most and second most of each type of souvenir earned an additional bonus. With 6 types of souvenirs, this was 7 souvenir scoring steps at the end of the game.
We proposed reducing the number of souvenirs to 4, and then giving rewards for collecting a set of all 4 as well. Instead of endgame comparisons, an award is given during the course of the game for having the most of a type, which can change hands as players compete for a type of souvenirs. For example, the player in the gif above has 14 points: 5 from a set of souvenirs and 9 from having the most postcards.
At the end of a game, players only need to add up points on items in front of them, without having to compare with the other players to determine final score. That cut the endgame scoring steps for souvenirs from 7 to 2. On average, this cut almost 2 minutes out of endgame scoring (depending on player count).
Other advantages included being able to give each type of souvenir an identity, themed as something you would collect as you traveled the world such as postcards or crafts. The new scoring system also let us scale souvenir points differently in two-player games, where early tests saw souvenir-focused strategies taking over from exploring the game's beautiful locations.
See more on the Trekking the World Kickstarter page.