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Developer Blog – Hauler Part 4

November 22, 2013 in Game News

Back so soon with another update?  YES!  In the spirit of NaGaDeMon, I have been working late into the night on all the aspects of the game and actually ran a 6 player simulation and it was not very good, in that the decks ran out too fast and the trucks did not move.  So, the game is now a 2-5 player game and I will be doing more playtests in the coming days.

946075_10202120233758072_1552013860_nIn the meantime, I want to talk about the card design for Hauler, specifically the deckbuilding cards.

Like many deckbuilders, the card is laid out with the title up top, the cost of the card in RED and the greenstamps that the card provides when played in GREEN.  When a player decides to do a deckbuilding turn instead of moving their trucks, they will play cards from their 5 card hand, and each played card may have effects, give the user green stamps to use to buy other cards, or both.  In the example on the left, the card is not worth green stamps, but this card allows the user to place an operations center, which acts as a hub and a free fuel stop for a truck.  This is a great time to either place the operations center where a truck already is or purchase a new truck and deploy it at the operations center so you don’t use up your fuel tokens or have to buy fuel.  Then, the player must move a truck and draw a pollution card.

In Hauler, when you choose to complete the actions on the card, you must complete all the actions, from top to bottom before playing another card or purchasing any cards.  The only thing a player can do after starting the actions on the card, but before completing all the actions on the card, is to buy and place a truck, as I talked about in the last paragraph.

The cards are color coded, in that this special operations card is orange.  Truck cards are red and all give green stamps.  There are gold Victory Point cards that give the player VPs to count at the end of the game, green Fuel cards that grant fuel tokens to move the player’s trucks during a dispatch turn or when a card effect is used to move a truck, blue Action cards that introduce a ton of variation in the game with positive and negative effects and black Pollution Cards.

1467480_10202123031748020_800666209_nThe Pollution cards are special, in that they are not purchased and are simply the consequences of using card effects to move trucks on the board instead of taking a dispatch turn to move all the trucks they own.  The Pollution cards just pollute your hand, and provide junk that must be removed in order to have a more productive deck.  There are Garbage trucks in the game that allow the player to return Pollution cards to the pollution deck, treatment facility cards that offer the same opportunity, and if a player passes a turn entirely, they can return all their pollution cards in their hand and redraw to 5, placing any pollution cards drawn on the pollution deck so they start their next turn with 5 productive cards.

I am going to be working on the card layout this weekend for the route and special effect cards and will hopefully have an update on them next week.  The route cards are straight forward, move a load from point A to point B and get paid X victory points.  Some perishable loads offer bonuses for quicker delivery, but you run the risk of speeding to complete the run with bonus points.  There are hitchhikers that also provide an opportunity for bonuses, and although you real truckers know not to pick up hitchhikers, hollywood has done a great job showing that everyone in a bind can get picked up by a friendly trucker.

Also coming are the weather and event cards, like earthquakes, hurricanes, storm fronts, blizzards and a host of other natural disasters that make speeding in or out of an affected city quite dangerous.

Thank you and please keep sending me suggestions!  One very helpful suggestion actually will have me redesign the card cost and benefit icons to look like a stop sign for the cost and a dollar bill for the green stamps it provides.


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