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Crowdstorming: Dancing Queen

 

I am now working towards self-publishing my first game, Dancing Queen, which won the Best Overall Game at the 2021 BoardGameGeek 9-Card nanogame competition. I aim to do a limited print run. I am engaging a local printing house. I’m also engaging a professional artist and graphic designer. We are aiming to get the game released by November 2022. 

Now here’s where I am asking for your help. Each of the 9 cards in the game has two halves, a girl half and a boy half, and each half has a name. In the first print-and-play release of the game, I did not have any consistent theme or convention for these names. I picked any name which I felt was easy for me to remember. I ended up with a rather random set of names. Now I am thinking whether I should rename them all. We are still at the stage of discussing theme and art style. 

Here are the original 18 names and the card powers. Numbers 1 to 9 are the girls, and 10 to 18 the boys.  #1 and #10 are on the same card, at opposite ends. #2 and #11 are on the same card, and so on. 

  1. We’re Even – both players have an even number of cards in play
  2. You’re Even – your opponent has an even number of cards in play
  3. Girls’ College – all cards in play are girls
  4. Girl Power – more girls than boys in play
  5. Rainbow Parade – all cards are same-gendered pairs (boy + boy or girl + girl)
  6. The Romeo – a single boy among girls
  7. Perfect Balance – the same number of boys and girls
  8. ABBA – 2 girls and 2 boys
  9. Spice Girls – 5 girls
  10. We’re Odd – both players have an odd number of cards in play
  11. You’re Odd – your opponent has an odd number of cards in play
  12. Boy School – all cards in play are boys
  13. Boyzone – more boys than girls in play
  14. Ballroom Dancing – all cards are opposite-gendered pairs (boy + girl)
  15. The Rose – a single girl among boys
  16. Competition – gender imbalance (regardless of more boys or girls)
  17. Queen – 4 boys
  18. The Cranberries – 1 girl and 3 boys
You can see I have some cards which describe the game situation based on even and odd numbers, some cards which describe the mix of boys and girls, and also some cards which are band names. The band names are from different eras. You can probably tell my age from the choice of bands. 
 
Sticking with these names is an option. I don’t rule that out. The names should ideally be related to the overall theme and setting, and should also help players remember the powers of the cards. It would be best of the names are easily understood by most people who buy the game, i.e. they get the reference. E.g. if the people who would buy this game are mostly below 20, they may not know the band ABBA or the song Dancing Queen at all. If I can come up with a better idea, I will change the names. 
 
Here are two ideas I have been thinking of. 
 
The theme is prom night or dance party. We invite friends to an evening of dancing. Each card can be either a boy or a girl, so I’ll simply give them human names. That’s straight-forward and consistent with the theme. Here are the potential names. 
 
  1. Evelynn – both players have an even number of cards in play
  2. Eva – your opponent has an even number of cards in play
  3. Angel – all cards in play are girls
  4. Karen – more girls than boys in play
  5. Priscilla – all cards are same-gendered pairs (boy + boy or girl + girl)
  6. Juliet – a single boy among girls
  7. Christina – the same number of boys and girls
  8. Anna – 2 girls and 2 boys
  9. Mel – 5 girls
  10. Todd – both players have an odd number of cards in play
  11. Rod – your opponent has an odd number of cards in play
  12. Charlie – all cards in play are boys
  13. James – more boys than girls in play
  14. Raphael – all cards are opposite-gendered pairs (boy + girl)
  15. Romeo – a single girl among boys
  16. Bucky – gender imbalance (regardless of more boys or girls)
  17. Freddie – 4 boys
  18. Neil – 1 girl and 3 boys
I won’t explain in detail why I chose these names. There are reasons behind most of them, but not all. Some names were picked just because it sounded like that kind of name. If more most cards you understand why I picked that name, that’s good news for me. It means I’m doing something right. If you have no idea why I picked the names, then my choices are poor. 
 
The second idea is thinking of the card names as song names. In the days when cassette tapes were common, cassettes have sides A and B. So imagine a cassette tape with a girl side and a boy side. 
 
Early concept art
 
The list of song names I have come up with are as follows. Some are not real song names. I made up names which sounded like pop song names. 
 
  1. Getting even – both players have an even number of cards in play
  2. Two by two – your opponent has an even number of cards in play
  3. All the girls I’ve loved before – all cards in play are girls
  4. Uptown girls – more girls than boys in play
  5. Siamese twins – all cards are same-gendered pairs (boy + boy or girl + girl)
  6. Bachelor boy – a single boy among girls
  7. You’re perfect – the same number of boys and girls
  8. Dancing queen – 2 girls and 2 boys
  9. Spice up your life – 5 girls
  10. Are you lonesome tonight? – both players have an odd number of cards in play
  11. The odd boy – your opponent has an odd number of cards in play
  12. Boys in the hood – all cards in play are boys
  13. Love me for a reason – more boys than girls in play
  14. The last waltz – all cards are opposite-gendered pairs (boy + girl)
  15. You are the one – a single girl among boys
  16. Heartbreak high – gender imbalance (regardless of more boys or girls)
  17. We are the champions – 4 boys
  18. Zombies – 1 girl and 3 boys
Let me list the questions which you can help me with: 
 
  1. Would you change the names of the cards? 
  2. Which naming convention do you like? Or do you have some other suggestion? 
  3. Any suggestions for specific card names? 
  4. Any thoughts on the early concept art?

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