Looney Labs Icehouse Mailing list Archive

[Icehouse] Explaining icehouse as simply as possible

  • FromCarl Worth <cworth@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • DateMon, 23 Jul 2007 10:46:14 -0700
On Sat, 21 Jul 2007 19:55:06 +0200, Simon Budig wrote:
> Andy Looney (andy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx) wrote:
> > Hey everyone! I've been getting questions about when I'll be posting the
> > rules for my new game Black ICE online. Well, unfortunately, I'm not
> > planning to do so for awhile. I expect I will someday, but for now I'd
> > rather keep the rules off the internet so that people have a reason to buy
> > 3HOUSE. It's only 3 bucks and I'm really proud of it...

Thanks for the clarification, Andy.

> Since I am not really enthusiastic to pay about 9$ of shipping to europe
> for 2$ worth of goods - does anybody have a good idea on where to get
> two dices for small money, shipped to germany?
> /me could kick himself for not just playing safe with his last order, a
> week ago...

And here I am kicking myself for not just giving you two of my dice
while we were together before I flew back to the states---I've got
plenty here. Clearly I wasn't thinking clearly after staying up all
night playing with pyramids.

I suppose I could check what postage would be for me to just drop a
couple in an envelope.

Meanwhile, this was really my first time to take the pyramids out to
play in a public place, (four times this week). They definitely have
an impressive ability to attract curious onlookers. It was very common
to hear a new person come to the table with "Wow, what game is that?".

And I found myself bumbling through awkward answers, "Well, this game
is Zendo. But the pyramids are a whole gaming system called
Icehouse. But to buy it, you get 15 pyramids in a set called
Treehouse. And if you can't find it at your local store go to

I'd definitely like something shorter to get the important ideas
across. I finally settled into just saying "Zendo", "Ice Towers" or
"Martian Coasters" etc. to answer the question. That avoids any
bumbling, and as soon as anyone hears two answers they'll catch on to
the whole "gaming system" concept.

But the person might still be stuck if actually trying to buy
something, (if a store is just cool enough to carry Treehouse will the
staff also be cool enough to direct requests for Zendo to
Treehouse?). The game titles do google quite well at least.

I think what I'd really like is a card very much like the Looney Labs
Micro-catalog but focused entirely on icehouse pieces. The front could
mention Icehouse as a system, show a Treehouse tube and mention
looneylabs.com, while the back could list several games, (Treehouse,
3House, and PWP make a good list for example), and point to the
icehouse wiki.

The individual games don't currently have their own colorful branding
so it might not be as obvious how to make the back look as interesting
as the back of the micro catalog. Maybe just a photograph of 2 to 4
pyramids in some game-specific configuration along with the game title
and tag line. Really just a teaser introduction to the richness of the

I'd be quite glad to purchase and carry a stack of cards like that to
hand out while I'm playing. (If nothing else, I could let the card do
the explaining while I stay focused on trying to remember what colors
I just swapped in the current game of Black ICE.)


PS. I did experiment with handing out whatever printed material I had
on hand. The Martian Coasters rules worked pretty well I think. But
the ICE-7 cards, (while great for a playing reference), didn't provide
a good introduction at all. I think the person I handed the Volcano
reference card to just got more confused, for example.

PPS. And maybe it's time for me to go subscribe to the rabbits list

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