A Fast Paced Habitat Management Card Game
Combustible penguins is a card game in which you try to keep a habitat healthy while also fending off up to 7 opponents. To maintain your penguins you have to pay attention to 3 environmental issues: over population, under-population and competition.
To make things even more complicated your penguins can combust at any time! Each penguin has a special ability, but activating these abilities means they can’t join your habitat.
The Combustible Penguins custom box includes
- A basic rule sheet
- 7 extra rule twists to add replayability
- Teacher Ms. VicTori’s Guide to Victory!
- 2 quick rules cards
- 80 poker style penguin cards
As illustrated by our Little penguin, each one has a number, a name, an ability and a quote, as well as an adorable penguin! In all, their are 20 types of penguins with the highest ranked penguins being the rarest. This means their are only 1 mighty Emperor and Empress in each deck, but 8 copies of the most useful Allied Penguin.
Many of the penguins are named after actual species, while some are based around the combustible theme. Everything is already designed and ready to go.
Start The Game
To start the game each player creates their habitat by placing 3 penguins in a line in front of them. After setting up the round each player will have a hand of only one card.
The goal is to build the strongest habitat when the deck runs out of cards. The winner has the highest line total!
Each turn starts with a player drawing a card. They then can play that card onto their habitat or discard it for its abilities. For instance, the Little penguin shown above allows you to steal other players penguin into your line.
When playing a card on their habitat a player can play on either side, but make sure they don’t play the same type of card next to the other. Penguins compete for the same food resources.
Maintaining Your Habitat
After the player draws a card a decides what they want to do with it they have to maintain their habitat. This involves checking for three things in order:
- Check for underpopulation – Penguin lines who are composed of only 1 makes for a lonely penguin who will combust.
- Check for overpopulation – Penguin lines with more than 5 penguins will not be able to feed all the Penguins.
- Check for competition – Penguins will compete when another penguin that matches their type and is in line next to each other.
Losing Your Habitat
If your line is ever completely empty but you have a card in your hand, go ahead and play it immediately! You can choose to discard it and use its abilities, but if you don’t play on your line you lose your shot to win. You will have to manage carefully because from here on out you no longer have a hand and have to play the 1 card you draw on your turn.
If your habitat is emptied again you are eliminated from the game.
Ending The Game
When the deck runs out of cards, the turns still continue until nobody has a card left in their hand. If you don’t have a card your turn is skipped. When the last card is played, the player with the highest line is determined the winner!
The game design is complete and has been tested by almost 100 people! I am tweaking a few penguins to make sure they all look as fun as possible. The first promo decks are almost here and play threw videos will be coming soon! Before the Kickstarter runs I will be sending the promo versions to key reviewers and making any last-minute balance changes.
The cards will also be getting an update to increase readability, looking similar to the new King Card.
I have tested the games with three groups of children, who all gave great feedback. 13 and above players could grasp the rules clearly although certain card mechanics had to be explained. I am working to clarify each card and the instructions. Most 11 and above needed a little more help but really liked the penguins! I need to progressively work on tests with younger kids to see where the games age group should fall.
Stay tuned to this page Facebook and Twitter for when the Kickstarter will launch (assume September/October), until then I will be busy with looking into possible shipping distributors and cool nick-knacks for the backers! If you have any suggestions drop me a line on any of the media’s or here!
In the meantime, let’s bring it back to the inspiration for all these new card game ideas!