Roll and Writing History

Hello! Long time no see. I have been busy with life since I moved to Germany but that is not to say I haven’t been working on any boardgame in the background. Over the past few weeks I have been working on a Roll and Write game for a design contest on Boardgamegeek. Submissions closed last Monday and I am happy to introduce Roll Into Town as my entrant. Roll Into town is a game where you play as the mayor of a medieval town, gathering resources to grow your town. I will go deeper into the development of the game in my next posts but first I want to talk about the background of how I got into Roll and Write games and why I chose this theme for my entry into the contest.

So firstly, what is a Roll and Write game, it’s simply a game where you roll dice (or sometimes flip cards and then it’s called Flip and Write) and then mark on a sheet the results. Like most people my first introduction to Roll and Write games was playing Yahtzee. I always enjoyed playing Yahtzee with the risk of rerolling and the thrill of getting getting a Yahtzee on the last roll. Then came my introduction to the more modern side of Roll and Write games on Board Game Arena with Welcome To… (technically a Flip and Write) I found this to be a fun game with an interesting puzzle of fitting the numbers together with the special abilities. Then came Railroad Ink. Which quickly became one the top games to play with me and my partner. So much so that I’ve since made a few videos on it for youtube. (you can read about that process here) Over the past year I have been playing nearly any Roll and Write game I can get my hands on (my current favourite over on BGA is Get On Board). There is one Roll and Write in particular which has in part inspired Roll Into Town; Cartographers. A game about drawing a map in a fantasy world. This is probably one of my favourite games and I quite often take it out to play alone (in fact once I finish this article I think I will play it).

I occassionally check out the design contests on BGG and have attempted once in the past to enter a game but the move to Germany got in the way and I had to withdraw. This time when the Roll and Write contest was announced I had just completed my course and had some free time to think of what I could enter into it. I have always been interested in city building games (Cities: Skylines is one of my favourite videogames) and thought that it could be a good theme to suit this contest. After some brainstorming I decided to create a game with some elements of Cartographers, mixed with the resource gathering and building aspects of classic civilisation building videogames of the past like Age of Empires or The Settlers.

Roll Into Town went through many different iterations through feedback from a number of other people taking part in the contest. After many weeks of play testing and making changes, I eventually settled on the final version which is available today as a print and play version. Next week I will talk through how the game developed and why I made certain choices along the way. If you play the game let me know how you did down below. My highest score is 84!


  1. ytaka says:

    Glad to have you back!


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