Brett J. Gilbert, Game Designer

#06

Shape Up!

Mo Holkar

Card game

2 or 3 players • 10 minutes

Published 12/07/13 • Cards v1.0 • Rules v1.0

What you need

You only need the 18 cards. Nothing else is needed to play.

Circles, triangles or squares? Solid or hollow? Red, green or blue? Your challenge is to play cards to fill the grid and line up the shapes that will score you the most points — while trying to stop your opponent doing exactly the same thing!

About the game

The idea for Shape Up! began after I read Brett Gilbert’s blog post about microgames. I thought: 18 cards — that’s 3 × 2 × 3 — what can we do with that? Then the ideas of coloured symbols, assembling combinations, and manipulating a grid followed one after the other.

Because Shape Up! is so very abstract, I wanted to achieve that slightly addictive quality, where each time you play the game you feel you could do just a little bit better the next time. Unfortunately, I have hit the limit of my own ability fairly quickly, and people who have played it a few times can now usually beat me!

About the designer

Mo Holkar is a professional game designer, but not of this kind of game. He works on pervasive social games, murder mystery party games, educational games, and games consultancy. Card and board games are only a hobby that provides some light relief!

Mo lives in Ipswich with Tracy (human) and Poppy & Belle (feline), and organises an annual community street party as a way to get the neighbours talking to each other. He also dresses up as a pirate at the slightest excuse.