What do you get when you gamify cooking? The Draft Banquet!
The Draft Banquet combines card drafting game mechanics and social cooking to bring you this short game for potlucks, feasts and banquets where you get to eat the results. Creative foodies who love a challenge may also find it useful as a solo inspirational tool.
The game scales perfectly for up to 15 adventurous people, and takes just 5 minutes to play.
How it works
Gather some friends or family in advance of a potluck or party. Have everyone sit or stand in a circle within arm's reach of the person on either side. Deal each person a hand of seven cards.
When everyone is ready, each person simultaneously chooses an ingredient from their hand they'd like to cook with. That card is put aside. Nobody shows their cards to the other players until the end.
Each person then passes their six remaining cards to the person on their left, and receives six from the person on their right.
From this new, smaller hand of ingredients, each person selects a new ingredient to add to their ingredient pool. They then pass the five remaining cards to their left.
Repeat until everyone has a selection of seven ingredients in their ingredient pool. These are the ingredients they have to cook with.
Going around the group, everyone now has an opportunity to share their drafted cards, why they picked their chosen ingredients, and initial ideas on what sorts of dishes they could create. (Did someone say spiced chocolate-coated lychees?)
Finally, the last, critical step - players go off to create a dish from their final ingredient pool and share it with the others.
Drafting is a fun and social way of randomising ingredients, while still letting you retain control over the cards you pick. It's perfect for encouraging creativity with a limited random element.
Drafting also provides players with a strong strategic challenge. Do you start with more versatile ingredients to give yourself the best chance of getting a good run of ingredients which work together, or do you start out with a strong theme in mind (such as a fruit salad) and hope to be passed ingredients which work with it?
The Draft Banquet includes a wide range of ingredients: Fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes and beans, herbs, spices, dairy, meats, condiments, sweets and alcohol. Sweet and savoury ingredients are included. Each card has its most relevant food group marked at the top to help identify it, although these are not always perfect categorisations.
Anatomy of a card
Each card displays an image, image credit, ingredient type, and of course the card name.
Example dish drafts
These are some real examples of dish ideas which came up during testing:
Slow-Cooked Beef with Lime
Beef, lime, spring onions, chilli, flour, cumin, rice.
Salmon and Black Bean Foccacia
Paprika, salmon, avocado, red wine, mint, Turkish bread, black beans.
Spiced Egg and Bacon Breakfast with Artichoke
Egg, bacon, bread, artichoke, pepper, dill, chilli.
Honeyed Duck with Spiced Vegetables in Coconut
Duck, honey, green bean, potato, coconut, cardamom, fenugreek.
Ginger Fish with Asparagus and Plantain
Fish, ginger, banana, dill, rice, asparagus, olive oil
Dirty Matcha Biscuit
Flour, coffee, matcha, milk, vanilla, strawberry, mint
Standard mode: Players must cook with only the ingredients they drafted, but do not have to use all the ingredients.
Hardcore mode: Players must use every ingredient drafted in their dish.
As an inspirational tool
The Draft Banquet was developed as a game, but also works as an inspirational tool for people who want to try creative or surprising new food combinations.
For a challenge, a single player can shuffle the deck and draw seven cards at random to form their ingredient pool. Alternatively, they can simulate a draft environment by drawing seven cards, choosing one and discarding the rest, then drawing six new cards, and so on.
The Draft Banquet is at a late prototype stage and is ready to print. With the exception of the instruction manual (which we haven't printed yet) and any stretch goals, what you see here is the quality you can expect.
In other words, we're ready to go very soon! We just need to fund the print run.
Each box contains
- 105 high quality glossy ingredient cards - enough for a group of 15 players.
- 3 blank ingredient cards for local ingredients or personal customisation.
- Instruction manual.
- High quality rigid gloss box.
- Any stretch goals.
We have some stretch goals planned in the event the project looks likely to exceed its funding goal, so keep an eye on this space!
About the designers
Dark Mirror Games are small independent tabletop game designers based in Perth, Australia. They have recently produced Banishment, an asymmetrical card game about exorcism, and Dream of the Djinn, a tabletop RPG specialising in creative problem solving.
Kim has a background in digital design, communications and strategy. She loves creative challenges, many different kinds of games, and good food. She doesn't particularly enjoy cooking, and developed the Draft Banquet as a way to introduce creativity, fun and social interaction into an everyday process. Her favourite games include Magic: the Gathering (especially drafting), Betrayal at the House on the Hill, and procedurally-generated rogue-likes.
Jonathan actually knows how to cook and is less likely to unintentionally produce inedible slime when making a meal. His tireless work as a Draft Banquet test subject was instrumental in producing this game.
Risks and challenges
We've run two successful tabletop game Kickstarters previously, and have a track record of delivering what we promise on time. For the Draft Banquet, we're keeping our reward tiers nice and simple so we can deliver to you as soon as possible.
We've also taken some lessons from our previous projects. For example, we now know to allow a bit more time for shipping to Central America, and that the UK is likely to be hit with steep import taxes. If this Kickstarter is more successful than expected, our stretch goals are designed to add value to the project while keeping extra development time to a minimum.
This project, more than our previous games, is ready to go - the artwork is complete and we can move ahead with production within just a couple of weeks. We've specified March 2018 to be safe, just in case unforeseen circumstances arise or bulk shipping takes longer than expected, but it's likely to be completed and shipped out earlier.
The Draft Banquet is a little more expensive than our other games. We're aiming for excellent quality right from the start. The box and cards both look and feel beautiful and are far more durable and damage-resistant than our prototypes from previous Kickstarters. This does raise the cost per game, but the difference in quality really shows.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)