John’s background is art while Yuxin’s is journalism. In making this game we focused on what our creative philosophies had in common: We both look at ways in which we can convey a message while making that message easily consumable. When we began working together we knew we wanted to design a thoughtful concept wrapped in a playful experience.
Both in the east and the west games have a long history of fantasy politics and war. We liked the idea of old royal families and their banner-men drumming up support for conquest. The same ideas of party influence, allegiance to a certain faction, and propaganda relate to politics today. Concentrating on just aspects of loyalty 忠 and influence 策, we were able to make something political and bitesize. In contrast to other games with similar themes like Civilization, Chess, Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and Go, games of Oath last roughly a minute.
A lot of what makes Oath so inviting and approachable is due to how flexible it is. Players can have fun just mashing buttons but must think strategically and rearrange the board in order to fully master it. The number of players was made flexible with the intent that no-one has to wait long to play. The game board its self can even grow and shrink depending on how many sets or tiles the group has to play with. Oath can easily be brought to a party or bar, played by everyone and then hopefully talked about afterward.
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