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Turing Designer’s Diary Part 3 – Hiding and scoring

Turing is, mechanically speaking, a relatively simple game. That’s to say, it has only a few moving parts. This is a conscious design choice in relation to a more limited play-testing regime thanks to lockdown due to the Coronavirus pandemic. However, it does have a few interesting design challenges with very specific mechanics that I think explaining and examining might be useful to others. Specifically, the nature of obscuring choices and scoring the game, which I’m going to write about in this designer diary entry.

Obscure choices

In Turing a player is given a hand of cards showing abstract images. The game automatically selects one while the player picks one out as their intentional choice. The game is based around an interrogator inspecting those choices and attempting to identify a human intelligence behind one as opposed to the other. The intention of the game is to drive players to create connections between disconnected and abstract images. Clearly, if players are able to identify chosen cards by more mechanical means this would short circuit the game in a highly unsatisfying manner. As such we’ve had to obscure the ch