I had a really weird dream last night. Well, not last night, from the perspective of when you read this, but last night from when I write it. I dreamed that I was creating a board game and when I awoke, I had the whole thing in my head. The board. The rules. The whole thing fully formed. I wrote it down and I’m going to playtest it. Strangest of all, I suppose, is that it really does make sense and seems like a fun game, thinking about it now that I’m awake.
I don’t think I’ve ever done that before, come up with a complete idea for something while I was asleep and kept it all in my head once I woke up. Sure, there are dreams that you hold on to a snippet and then turn it into the kernel of an idea later on, I’ve done that all the time. Your dreams are a great place to come up with concepts for gaming adventures and story fodder, I think every creative person ought to look to their dreams, or the tiny parts that you probably remember when you wake up, for things that you can incorporate into your projects. If something seems interesting, make sure you write it down because most of the time, memories of dreams fade very, very quickly.
So anyhow, back to the game. I’m not going to give a lot of details except theming and the like because I’m still kicking around some parts of the concept. What’s strangest about it though is that it really doesn’t fall into any of my favorite genres. It’s a train game of sorts and while I like games like Ticket to Ride, it isn’t at all in that genre. In fact, it’s an Old West game, but not just an Old West game but a steampunk Old West game with trains. I don’t care about the Old West, I definitely don’t like most steampunk and really have no serious interest in most train games but there you go.
It’s got trains, delivering product on a board to multiple Western towns, it’s got combat, it’s got buying and selling and shooting and stealing and backstabbing and I really hope that it’s as fun to actually play as it feels like it would be in my head. I guess only time will tell once I create a prototype and get it to the table.
So who else out there has ever had a dream like this, where your subconscious mind came up with a game or a story or a project that you were able to take, fully formed, and actually put to some positive use? Does it happen to anyone else or is it just me?