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Kickstarter for Business Mogul Board Game May 15, 2014

Posted by ficial in games.
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In Business Mogul players are the leaders of rising corporate empires, competing with each other to amass the most power. It has gone through many, many rounds of revision, and local play testers really like it. They’ve noted the many interesting decisions it offers, the way the strategic importance of different elements shifts as the game progresses, the very minimal down time, and the fun process of play even when they’re not in the lead. Plus, while a player can feel good about winning through skillful play, it has just enough luck that players don’t feel bad about losing.

Game play is centered on building an economic engine and has a rich, balanced bidding mechanic. The game has a fixed number of turns – six seasons of five rounds each – and total play time tends to be about 2-2.5 hours for 4 people (the game is designed for 3-5, with a solid 2-player variant), on par with a feature movie. In every round there is one item per player up for grabs – every player gets an item every round. The items on which players bid are businesses that are used to build up their economic engine, extra actions to be saved until needed most (and they let a player do some things outside the normal rules of play), special agenda cards that give a score bonus at the end of the game (how much depends on how well the player fulfills the conditions for the given card), and events (which are to be avoided when possible). Players bid for pick/draft order rather than on a particular item. Each player starts each season with a set of nine bidding cards, which represent how the player, as the head of their businesses, is dividing their attention that round between trying to get the best of the available items and getting other stuff done. Each bid has a specific action that it allows (lower bids have more powerful actions), and bids saved for the end of the season (typically players have 4 bids left over each season) are worth money – the higher the bid the more it’s worth. These additional aspects associated with each bid make for exciting, meaningful choices every round. The key to winning is being tactically smart about balancing pick order vs. action vs. end-of-season-payout, paying attention to the state of other player’s empires and the bids they’ve already used in the current season, and executing a strategy that adapts to the flow of items up for bid.

Business Mogul is a fairly heavy-weight game, offering rich decision making, multiple viable strategies, high-replay value, and lots of room for player improvement. There are some fairly common game mechanics/attributes that Mogul specifically does not have:

  • It has no player-to-player aggression – the bidding each round is the only point of direct competition.
  • It does not have random action outcomes (that is whether or not a given action succeeds is not determined by dice, card draw, or anything like that).
  • It does not have any kind of territory control.
  • It has no resources / production beyond money and end-game score.
  • It does not require memorization of what’s been played; aside from a single hidden card each player gets at the start and the particular bid a player is making in a given round, the state of the game is fully revealed.


Business Mogul was designed by Chris Warren over the course of several years of development and playtesting. Chris has been a serious amateur game designer for over 10 years, having co-founded a weekly game design group in 2001 and he recently founded a small publisher Purple Valley Games. Business Mogul is the first game he is trying to get published. The kickstarter campaign has a primary backer level of $35 for the game & domestic shipping (international shipping is extra) and runs from now until June 8th. The game play design is finished and well tested, and the game assets will be revised/upgraded before publication – the pictures and demonstrations currently available show a final-stage prototype.


Name: Business Mogul

Designer: Chris Warren

Number of Players: 3-5, with a 2-player variant

Recommended ages: 12+

Play time: 90-150 minutes, depending on number of players and player experience level

Purple Valley Games web site: http://purplevalleygames.com/?page_id=22

Board Game Geek page: http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/159240/business-mogul

Kickstarter campaign site: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/747414366/mogul-boardgame-purple-valley-games-first-publicat

Twitter: https://twitter.com/csw11235

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ChrisWarren_as_csw11235



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