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IDW Games Posts Designer Spotlight With Richard Launius About Planet of the Apes

Planet of the Apes is a fairly iconic movie. Even if you've not seen it, yourself, I can all-but guarantee you've seen countless things that were spin-offs or parodies of it. You've heard Charlton Heston talking about stinking paws and where they should or should not be, and maniacs blowing things up. Soon, you'll be bringing the classic to your tabletop, courtesy of IDW Games and designer Richard Launius. In this preview article, Richard talks about some of the design process behind the game.

From the post:

What was the biggest hurdle in making the most iconic scenes into gameplay experiences?

There were actually two major hurdles in turning the iconic movie of Planet of the Apes into a game that is both fun to play and true to the movie. The first is that there is only one key character in the game and that is Col. Taylor. To make the game provide the experience of the movie I felt the players all needed to be in Taylor’s place of discovering this new world in which Apes rule and mankind are the beasts and put them on a path of survival and discovery. Ultimately the idea dawned on me that the players could each be a different aspect of Taylor’s personality – all the same person, but as in the movie show the different sides of Taylor through the skills given to each personality. The second challenge was how to move the players through the story, creating the right level of stress along the way. It took me four different designs before I finally came to the final version that is being published with the players moving from major scene to minor scene, each major scene a race with the Apes to the end with consequences for failing to complete the scene before the Ape token moved to the end. Additionally, the ever present Statue of Liberty token always moving toward the end putting pressure on the players to complete all scenes before it reaches the end gave the game the right balance level of excitement and pressure.