Sunday, November 20, 2011


Qunitavox is another large game that has gone through far to many changes over the years to list them all.  In fact, it's been known by at least 3 different names.  While Of Power & Glory is my current "baby", this is the only game that has a serious chance of replacing it... ok, maybe joining it.  I have resently completely revamped it for umptenth time and it needs serious playtesting.  I'll try to walk you through as much of the development process as I remember.

It started as a card game called Political Agenda.  This idea was fairly simple, you have a deck with 8 different kinds of political issues.  Each player would care about three of them (chosen at random and kept secret).  Then players would add cards to a bill and when the bill reached a certain number of cards, the bill was voted on using vote cards (that I can't remember how you got).  If it passed, the country was affected by all of the cards in the bill.  You could move up in power, and you had chips that represented political capital (that I can't remember how you used).   That's the first version of it in a nutshell.  I don't remember all of the rules, but that should give you an idea of where it started.

I played around with the rules quite a bit in this basic format; players having a hand of cards or not, having multiple bills or just a single one, players reveling their issue cards or not. etc.  But the first big change occurred when I added the map.  I decided to have a fictional country divided into 5 states where all of this political fighting was taking place.  This is were it gets complicated...  literally.   Once it was a more of a "board game", I threw all sorts of complications into it.  There was political influence being applied to counties, the election of senators and a president each with their own sets of powers, special cards you could put into a bill that had side effects and probably a lot more that I've forgotten.  I adopted a new setting "Vaguely Ancient Roman" and a new name "Quintavas" which was a bad Latin translation of what I thought was "5 states."

On one hand, I liked where it was going...  I'm a big fan of big games.  But on the other hand, it was getting too complicated to make work correctly.  At about this time, a friend of mine was inspired by the game and made a pure card game version it.  The two games have widely diverged into completely separate games.  I'm not sure how much he would want me to say about it, since it's not published yet, but I don't think he would mind me mentioning it's name:  Pork Barrel.  I, on the other hand, was determined to make a board game out it.  But I had to start by cutting out a lot of the complications.

I feel like it's appropriate to fast forward to were the game is now...  and since it's not completed, I'm sure there will many more changes that  will be explained in far greater detail.  I'll start with the name.  I liked the setting, but my bad Latin needed to be fixed.  When I discovered what 5 states really translated to in Latin "quinque civitates" it didn't exactly roll off the tongue.  So I stumbled around a bit until I came upon "Quinta Vox" or "The Fifth Voice"  I decide "Voice" could be seen as poetic term for "Vote" so I ran with it.

Quitavox has a board that is dominated by a map of a fictional country with  5 states.  Each state has 5 counties.  Next to each state is a place to put cards that form a Bill.  There are still 8 issues, but they are now paired up as opposites (e.g. Expansionism versus Isolationism).  Players no longer have 3 issue assigned to them to care about but he will develop concerns for the issues as the game is played.  Each county has an issue that they care about.  This is represented by a token that is placed in each county.  Players have pawns that can be placed on the map.  These pawns are used to influence the county.  On a player's turn, they have 5 action points that they can spend.  Here are the types of actions:  You can place a pawn on the map, move a pawn to an adjacent territory, campaign for an issue (put a ring on a pawn representing an issue), or add an Issue card to one of the 5 bills (one for each state).  When a bill reaches 5 cards, the bill is voted on.. had here's a big change from previous versions... it's voted on by the counties.  However, you can influence the county to vote your way by moving your pawn there.  If more than one pawn is in a county, then how those pawns have campaigned in the past, along with the issue that the county is concerned with determine which player gets to decide how the county will vote.  As you campaign for an issue, you become more concerned with it's advancement.

That's it for now...  But I'm sure I'll blog more on this game as it develops further.

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