Continuing the long winding road to get back to my normal schedule, today’s idea hinges around getting to ‘do over’ decisions you make during a game, and travel the road never trodden.

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Day 78: Time Turner

The core mechanism would be for a cooperative game, where two game states can be recorded at once (perhaps with two identical boards, or sets of cards). At various points in the game, players will make choices between two paths, as in any game. The difference in this game is that in addition to making a choice, they can choose for that particular choice to be a branching decision.

If it is chosen to be a branching decision, from then on a game is played separately on the two different boards. On one board you continue as if you made choice A, and on the second board you play as if you had chosen choice B. You keep playing each game, until you get to a point where you want to start another branch. In this case, you have to let go of the other game that was going, replacing it with the other branch of the new choice. For example, if you are happier with your progress on the choice A board, you might choose a new branching decision from that board (labelled A1 and A2) and would then set up the two boards to play from that point, abandoning the ‘B’ game.

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The idea is that you are slowly tunnelling towards your final outcome, but you can at various points ‘save’ your progress and test the outcome from each side of a given decision. The real skill would lie in deciding when it is best to ‘branch’, and recognising when you are making a particularly risky decision. There would probably have to be a fair amount of randomness in the game, so you couldn’t quite know exactly what the best decision is at all times, giving meaning to be able to test situations. How do you think you could further expand on this idea?