A week ago I posted about a new LADDER MATCH boss fight.

Overall it has gone really well but I did have some minor tweaks that came through play testing.

Rebuilding the Jenga Tower Adjustment

It became quickly apparent in the first game that recovering from a collapse of the Jenga tower or a failed dice roll was far too difficult. There just wasn’t enough time to recover. From the starting Jenga tower to the first layer to try a dice roll is 16 questions – nearly 1/2 the questions. To do this a second time was difficult and didn’t guarantee fair odds of success if they did so. Only 1 of 4 groups managed to win and that was only due to a fairly unwise risk to build up to the D8 dice roll level and an incredibly lucky last minute roll.

The ill advised final risky move! Check out the shaking hand!

I tweaked the Rebuild mechanic to allow for multiple Jenga block moves for a correct question. I believe I made it the Tower Layer +1 on the Dice Roll table. So if the structure collapsed at Layer 2 the group would get 3 jenga block moves per correct question. This made it both too easy to gain levels AND slowed down the later stages of the game to a frustrating level. Some groups knocked their tower down 3 or 4 times and still were able to get to the top of the dice roll table. Of the 3 groups in this class 2 of them won and the 3rd group should have but bumped the table on their final piece. We still had 3-4 questions to go!

In this goldilocks scenario the final group seems to have been just about right. of the 4 groups playing 1 group won the game, 2 groups were at a fair D4 and D6 roll at the end, and one group had a tower collapse with only 2 or 3 questions remaining which knocked them out of contention.

The Magic Ratio – “Whether due to a collapse or a failed dice roll, after a rebuild groups can make 1 extra Jenga moves for each rebuild.”

This allowed for a nice brisk game in the early stages as the students built up to the first Dice Roll attempt and allowed for a balanced risk/reward calculation once on the dice roll table. Once a rebuild became necessary it allowed them to have a fair amount consequence for the failed risk but quickly got them back into striking distance with enough questions remaining to have a fair chance.

Granted I had about 45 questions for the students to answer which influenced the numbers a bit.

Dice Roll Table Tweaks

I added a third column to Dice Roll Table. In the “Rebuild Column” I could put a mark so the students could strategize and I could monitor which dice roll the students were on.

Layer / Correct AnswersDice SizeRebuild
1st / 16 answersD20 
2nd / 19 answers2 x D8 (16) 
3rd / 22 answersD12 
4th / 25 answersD8 
5th / 28 answersD6 
6th / 31 answersD4 
7th / 34 answersCoin Flip 

The Swinging Title Belt Bucket

Surprisingly, the first group of kids thought that their ability to cancel out the teacher attacks was too easy. To cancel the effect of the teacher moves students had to throw a paper ball into the basket hanging from the big title belt. The students thought it was to easy and suggested swinging the basket while they threw the balls. I guess games truly are voluntarily overcoming unnecessary obstacles!