2018-10-01 - Ask
Ejder asks: „I always wonder how to get a deck that has a nice well balanced amount of cards. How did you set the decks up for your games?“
balancing a game is very difficult and there are people who exclusively work on this, so i can only give you a few tips on how to approach balancing in general.
For my games i mostly play test a lot and try to observe which rules/mechanics/parts of my games make it easier and which make it harder to win. This can be done on a very general level like are there too many cards that hurt the player or are there too many cards that can swing the game in one direction. After i have identified the parts that need change, i either remove or add more of it to the game. Then i play test again unit it feels right. The problem here is that you always need some kind of outside validation, for example other play testers, but you mainly need to rely on your own judgement if a game is too hard or too easy. I mostly go by feel because i always assume that i am the target group of my games. I think a well balanced game is a game where if the player loses he can exactly pin point the moment he could have done something else to win.
Another trick that i use, as described here, is to create a card dealing logic for my games that also works in favor of the players. Often you just need the one crucial card to either win or lose a game. That’s why i mostly try to balance out the card drawing itself as well.
In terms of amount of cards i basically look at the playtime per session. If it takes longer than 7-10mins i will remove cards to cut down the length of one game and rebalance the difficulty accordingly.