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WordTov: Word Tov The Board Game Of Dramatic Reversals. project video thumbnail
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$2,992 pledged of $26,000 goal
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By Michel Nizon
$2,992 pledged of $26,000 goal
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About this project

Origin

I have a passion for board games, especially the granddaddy of word board games. However, I have always been bored by having to keep score with a pen and paper after each turn. At one point I saw a new possibility of replacing the numbers on the tiles with another playing mechanism based on 2 colors, blue and red on double-face letter tiles.

I brought together a team of highly skilled volunteers I had known for a long time and who I fully trusted to help me build an intensely addictive new board game around this concept. With a talented team, we designed everything from scratch, prototyped multiple times... and extensively tested... our new creation, an almost endless process!

I am so excited to share with all of you on Kickstarter, WordTov which combines the best of entertainment and strategy. It takes minutes to know the game's rules and a lifetime to master WordTov. Hopefully the more you play, the better you become, the replayability being infinite.

Why I Need Your Help/Reward

The project goal you see on this Kickstarter page is what it costs to get the first production batch made to significantly reduce the manufacturing costs per game. For this purpose, I'm offering you the First Edition of WordTov well below retail price, exclusive to this Kickstarter campaign.

Evolution

I invite you to play WordTov over and over again, and who ever you are (casual gamer, game designer, English teacher, word games champion,...) share with the community how you would like the game to evolve: components, materials, special game rules, dictionary choice, accessories, how, where and when to organize public and open competitions, features you would love in the future digital versions of the game, everything you see as important... You will have a voice for all that matters in the life of WordTov. On wordtov.com you will soon find a burgeoning community leading the way in the future of WordTov via forums, international events and more!

A WordTov Match 

Getting the hang for WordTov? What would your next move be?

                                      You play blue. Spread your color all over! 

Benefits:

  • Have fun. It’s quite a rush to flip a large number of your opponent’s letter tiles and jump ahead in the game. With endless possibilities until the end, your opponent will never imagine you're going to be the winner until it’s over!
  • Be a master strategist. WordTov helps you think strategically about the consequences of your actions and your opponent's moves. There is also room for chance. Although every player has the same letters, they are never picked in the same order.
  • Acquire new vocabulary. You will acquire new words that your opponent uses or you didn't remember you knew. You can use a dictionary to check words and read definitions. For learners of English, it's an opportunity to think in English and start an interesting discussion with your opponent if he or she is a native English speaker to put the words in context. 

What Is In The Box?

  • 1 black bag containing 62 double-sided blue and red letter tiles plus 3  "WordTov" tiles that can replace any letter. Each tile has a black slice in the middle. 
  • 1 white bag containing 62 double-sided blue and red letter tiles plus 3 "WordTov" tiles that can replace any letter. Each tile has a white slice in the middle. 

The  black or white color of the slice in the middle allows you to sort out the tiles before starting a new game and to put the same number of tiles in each bag, black or white.

  • 1 board 17 X17 squares with each of the 289 squares having the same value.

Each letter tile has also the same value, no paper and pen necessary for scoring after each turn. 

Written English Instructions are at the bottom of the box, so there's no risk of losing them.

The Letter Tile is The Star!

All the components of WordTov have been meticulously crafted. We put in a lot of effort to create the unique and perfect letter tiles that would look beautiful, feel good to hold and easy to flip. This is all thanks to their original design (US Design patent pending).

From first prototypes to industrial sample (left to right).
From first prototypes to industrial sample (left to right).
Computer drawings for the industrial mold.
Computer drawings for the industrial mold.

French Design

Charlotte Poupon
Charlotte Poupon

Among the team, Charlotte is an industrial designer who graduated from ENSCI-Les Ateliers (Paris, France) and has worked on a variety of projects, from the refurbishing of a building in an Antarctic base to creating an innovative jar for pickles! This is her first board game project because I wanted a fresh perspective to make WordTov look unique.

Free 3D Printing

I'am going to give you the user/customer/player, the right to 3D print any WordTov tile you may one day lose to a limit of 5 tiles per year (fair use). I don't want this frustrating event to stop you playing WordTov or force you to buy a new game.

I will provide you with the necessary digital files to download on wordtov.com.

Flip The Tile

  • Press one beveled top part with your index finger.
  • Put your thumb under one beveled bottom part.

5 Minutes To Know The Rules

Règles du jeu en français (cliquez svp)

Reglas Castellano spanish

To help me with the writing of short and effective game rules, I asked Patrick to define the game mechanics to optimize interest and the pleasure of playing.

Patrick Bernheim, The Master Strategist
Patrick Bernheim, The Master Strategist

Number of players: 2 or 2 teams of 2 players.

Average length: 25-30 minutes.

Aim: To get the largest number of tiles of your color on the board by forming words.

The Start

Players decide who will play with blue and who will play with red. A tile is tossed in the air by one of the players. The visible color when the tile lands is the color of the player who will start the game.

Each player picks 8 tiles from his or her bag and displays them on their side of the board, visible to the other player. The first player forms a word of 2 to 8 letters, by placing tiles in a row or a column (diagonally is not allowed), with his or her color facing up, wherever he or she wants on the board, the borders or inside (All the words must have a definition in an English dictionary).

He or she picks up the same number of tiles that have just been place on the board so that 8 tiles are again displayed on the board's side.

The Play

The second player, then, adds one or more tiles, his or her color facing up, in order to form a new word using the existing letters (a word may touch several letters already on the board provided each word in a row or a column also has a meaning).

Then this player can flip to his or her own color, any letter in each word that has just been touched, within the limit of the number of tiles that he or she just added.

The 6 tiles with the logo “WordTov” can replace any letter. The chosen letters stay the same until the end of the game.

  • Use of the 8 tiles in the same go: In this case, and only in this case, the player can use the tiles in two different places to form new words, and he or she can flip all the letters of the word or the words in which they have just used a tile, even if this word or these words have more than 8 tiles. Playing all 8 tiles in one turn is a WordTov.
  • Anagrams: Each player, when it is his or her turn, before playing his or her tiles, can change the color of all the tiles of a word on the board by forming an anagram provided all the words on the board still maintain a meaning.

When a player can't form a word, he or she skips a turn.

It's Forbidden To Add:

  • an (s) to form a plural word.
  • a (re) only meaning repetition.

The End

When no more words can be found by either of the players. The winner is the player with the most colored tiles on the board. The score corresponds to the number of tiles of each color on the board at the end of the game.

WordTov Video Preview with Dan King

(Game rules explained)

Letters Break Down

130 letter tiles
130 letter tiles

I have created a home brew combination for the number of letters in each bag, and this taking into account the repartition of letters in the written English language thanks to Wikipedia. Each bag, black or white, have the same quantity of each individual letter.

A: 12    G: 4      M: 2    S: 4      Y:

B: 2      H: 4      N: 8    T: 8       Z: 2

C: 2       I: 12    O: 10  U: 4      WordTov: 6

D: 4      J: 2      P: 2     V: 2

E: 16    K: 2     Q: 2    W: 2

F: 2       L: 4     R: 8    X: 2

Thanks

Thanks to all the people I have discussed the ideas with for their thoughts about the project and their encouragement. They know who they are. Among them, I want to specifically thank Mr John D. Wiliams - known as Mr Scrabble, from starting Scrabble championships, writing a book called “Everything Scrabble” and even creating an ESPN show based on the game (source: New York Daily News) - who gave me precious advice on the phone and by email in spite of an overloaded agenda!

I would like to thank Jamey Stegmaier, the publisher of Stonemaier Games and amazing board games: Viticulture, Euphoria and Tuscany. Jamey's blog has been an unlimited source of inspiration throughout all the life of this project.

A special thanks to J-M. Liron (Stanford Alumni), Geek and Apple lover, who was the first casual gamer to play with the first prototype of WordTov during the summer of 2013 and who has since flooded me with numerous emails on how to improve the gaming experience. Thanks to J-P Grandhomme who helped me building the first prototype, Simon Dekoninck and his friends, Shane Wells, Brad Patterson and Phil Wade. Thanks to Christian de Ryck, member of the International Playing-Card Society who suggested using the 8 letters in the same go to form 2 words.

Reviews

"WordTov is an area-control game that happens to use words as weapons." By Jonathan H. Liu From Geekdad.com

"The game tiles are a true one-of-a-kind piece of art. A must see for yourself design." First Impressions on WordTov (a word board game) By Larry R. Cockrell, Jr. of Kenosha, WI

"Pour l’avoir testé avec mes filles, cela donne de bons résultats. Le temps d’appropriation des règles est faible, et le feedback immédiat." Wordtov, un nouveau jeu de lettres en anglais Par Mikaël Cabon

Risks and challenges

I've put a significant amount of my time and savings into making WordTov a polished, production-ready board game. I ordered a pre-run production to our carefully selected (among many) manufacturer Wingo Industry Ltd to be sure that they are able to manufacture the board game and specifically the most challenging high-quality plastic piece: the letter tile. They was founded in 1992 and has over 20 years experience manufacturing board games.

Wingo Industry Ltd invested a lot of time and technical expertise in producing the perfect letter tile and all other components. Their dedication and high level of competence have really made a difference and I know that they will smoothly handle the manufacturing of 1000 or 1 million board games as soon as we send them the first order☺.

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    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    I will e-mail you a thank you note. I'll keep you up-to-date on all of our progress developing the WordTov community! (competition events, club creations, game parties,...)

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    1 e-booklet of our "50 Dramatic Reversals In WordTov Games".

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    You get one copy of WordTov. WordTov will retail at $49 USD in the US and 49 € in Europe. US and Europe Shipping included. All other countries: $10 USD

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    Be among the first people in the world to get one copy of WordTov with our numbered limited edition (specific WordTov logo inside the squared board) + 1 e-booklet of our "50 Dramatic Reversals In WordTov Games". US and Europe Shipping included. All other countries: $10 USD.

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    WordTov Family Pack: You get 5 copies of WordTov + 1 e-booklet of our "50 Dramatic Reversals In WordTov Games". Make your friends and relatives happy too! US and Europe Shipping included. All other countries: $10 USD.

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    WordTov Club Pack: You get 8 copies of WordTov. Set up and run your Official WordTov Club in your community or your school. We will promote it on wordtov.com and elsewhere + 1 e-booklet of our "50 Dramatic Reversals In WordTov Games". US and Europe Shipping included. All other countries: $10 USD.

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Funding period

- (30 days)