Squadron Dice came about simply because we did not have a dice game on our list of game ideas and I thought we should have one. I've played a few dice games, the most well known one being Zombie Dice by Steve Jackson Games. This is a fun game... when it's your turn. I am not a fan of turn based dice games because there is nothing to do during your down time, and depending on the luck of your opponents, the down time can be rather lengthy. My first decision in designing Squadron Dice was to eliminate as much down time as I could. The idea that I came up with was an aerial dog fight with a WWI bi-plane theme. Originally called Dog Fight Dice, the name was changed to avoid any confusion and association to actual dog fighting.
When I originally presented the idea to the others, Mike was not impressed by it. But, after a few minutes thinking about it, he said to prototype it and see what happens. He was still doubtful. By the next week, I had a few dice fixed up with bi-plane stickers printed on shipping label stock. After a quick review of the rules to date, Mike and I played a quick game. The game won him over. It was quick and exciting, with all players rolling for position at the same time. Once position is determined, one player attacks while another defends, both players rolling their dice at the same time. In a three or four player game, this is the only downtime you have. It lasts only as long as it takes to roll the dice to decide the battle, then all players are back in the game, rolling for position.
I passed the game off to Mike so that he could crunch the numbers and get the dice balanced. Even though it has player elimination, with the balancing we have, most of the time all players are in the game until the final five minutes or so. Of our first three games, this one is the crowd favorite. It is quick to teach and to learn. It has lots of excitement with near misses and narrow escapes. I feel that I have succeeded in my goal to eliminate the down time. It's still there, but you have to be looking for it to notice it.
Thanks for reading.