Joker Bomb: Bomberman with Cards


I based this game off the classic videogame Bomberman developed by HudsonSoft in 1983 and mashed it up with a mini-game puzzle from Return to Zork, another classic game. It is tons of fun and here are the rules to play in card form.

Requires: 1 deck of cards
# of Players : 2 – 3
Playing time: 2 – 5 minutes


Remove 7, 8, 9, and 10 from a deck of cards.

Take the Jokers out – if they’re different colours, you can use them as your Bomberman. If they’re not different, one person should use a joker and the other the box for the cards. Alternatively you can use miniatures or tokens from a board game.

Shuffle the remaining cards (A to 6, Jacks, Queens, and Kings) and deal out a 5×5 grid of face down card spaces the players can move around on like a game board. This makes the battle arena.

For Two players, deal three cards to each player for their starting hand.
For Three Players, deal two cards to each player for their starting hand.

Put the rest of the cards on the side of the battlefield.


In Joker Bomb, your goal is to blow up the board and trap your opponents so they cannot play a card. As long as you’re playing cards you are in the game. You are invincible to the explosions themselves.


Your Joker starts off the board. When you play your first card you must determine where you are entering the board from. Pretend there is an extra set of spaces around the outside of the board and decide where your Joker was in those spaces and then enter the battle arena.

When it’s your turn, play a card from your hand. If it’s a number you move that many spaces in any direction, even diagonal. If it’s a face card it will explode where you’re standing. There will be more on the explosions later.


If you move, then you must move on top of cards from one adjacent card to the next one. You cannot hop over any holes in the board and players themselves are considered a hole for the sake of movement. You are encouraged to move to new locations unless you have to move back to an old location. This means if you play a six but can only move onto an “island” of one card then you just go 1-2…6! and stay on the one card. The important part is that you played a number card.

When you end your movement, flip over the card you landed on and reveal it to everyone. If it’s a number, put it into your hand. If not, then it is a bomb and it explodes! If there is any deck left, you can draw a card face down from the deck and put it in your hand.

Bombs and Explosions!

Whether you play a bomb from your hand or your step on one on the board, the bombs are treated the same. You look at your Joker and the bomb explodes the spaces next to it in a pattern based on the type of the bomb.

If you explode a Jack Bomb it explodes as an X, removing the four diagonal cards next to your Joker.

If you explode a Queen Bomb it explodes as a Plus +, removing the four orthogonally adjacent cards next to your Joker.

If you explode a King Bomb you have a choice of X or Plus.

  • X: remove all cards in the diagonals extending out to the edge of the board, ignoring holes causing mass destruction!
  • Plus: remove all cards left and right of your Joker and above and below extending out to the edge of the board, ignoring holes and dividing the arena into smaller islands!

Discard the bomb and, if there is any deck left, draw a card face down from the deck.

Reminder: The explosions don’t harm the Jokers but they limit their movement by removing the cards they can move on.

Aces Rebuild!

Aces are a special card that will allow you to bridge your way to safety. Aces allow you to both:

  • Move one space AND
  • Add up to 3 cards from the deck face down back anywhere onto the battle arena

You can do these in any order. If there is no deck, too bad! You only get to move one space.

Ending the Game

Keep playing cards and destroying the battle arena until players cannot play cards. When a player cannot play a card they must pass (i.e. because it’s a number and there are no card spaces to move to or they have no cards in their hand). If it gets back to your turn and all your opponents passed then you win the game!

Example: Joe, Sheila, and Sky are playing. Joe plays a bomb. Sheila passes. Sky passes. Joe wins.

Additional Notes

Played cards go into a discard and the deck is never reshuffled. It is supposed to run out and run out FAST!

If you play a bomb on your first turn, decide where your Joker is just off the board and trigger the bomb from there. Your Joker’s position is now decided and locked until you play your next card and move them out of there. Be careful playing a bomb on your first turn, it is easy for your opponents to quickly trap you so you cannot even enter the arena!

In a three player game, it is possible for a player that has passed to re-enter the game if one of the other players uses an Ace to build a bridge to that player’s Joker. Then if their hand has a legal card to play they can start moving again. This is handy if two beginners are playing against an expert player.

Some Variations

Ranged Attacks
Try swapping out two of the Kings for a 9 and a 10.

9’s are like Jacks except they blow up cards that are two spaces away. but do not touch the card adjacent to the Joker.

10’s are like Queens except they blow up cards that are two spaces away, but do not touch the cards adjacent to the Joker.

4-6 Players on a MEGA-Board

Use two decks and make a 7×7 board. Then you can play with up to 6 players!

Starcatcher Screenshots and Artwork


Here is some artwork and screenshots from my iPhone version of StarCatcher (taken using a PC export as I’m currently upgrading my Unity version to work with iOS 6). Above is the credits screen. You’ll notice a few alterations to make it more compelling. I’ve kept the look and feel of a painting, but for a stronger storyline I’ve added two main characters: a little alien and a little girl. The little girl discovers the alien in his small Jetsetter craft as he gets out of the crater formed by the mothership crashing into the earth. The alien is searching for energy to power the escape pods so they can fly back to the mothership. (So now instead of lighting lamps with stars, you’re powering UFO’s with “star energy”) The two characters help direct the story and where the levels go and I’m not saying anything more on that. Check out the screenshots and also play the original flash game here.

Getting out of the crater

Getting out of the crater

Getting out of the crater was the original level 1. It’s a simple question mark made out of stars to collect. It’s simple, but kind of boring. I’ve designed a more exciting hook (but have yet to implement it) where instead of starting after the crash, you’re going to start playing as the crash begins and the player will follow the mothership (trying to collect the fuel/star energy that is spraying out of it) as it careens through the sky and smashes into the Earth. This will be more like 4 levels but will be a much more exciting start to the game and will give the player a sense of importance, urgency, and excitement. Also, you’ll get to hear your commanding officer over the radio giving you tutorial orders and form a bond with that character a bit more. I prefer actual game characters giving you instructions instead of a random narrator.


The beginning of a maze

Black cloud walls need to be avoided as they destroy your stars. Zooming out is useful for seeing the whole maze, but to help navigate carefully staying zoomed in can be quite handy. Balancing looking at the map vs guiding your stars is a tough challenge.

Indie Game: The Movie

I saw Indie Game: The Movie last week with the Full Indie Group. It was very cool! A heart warming story of developers putting it all on the line and the trials they face to get their game out on the market. It was a very neat event followed by a live broadcast across Canada of a Q&A session with the Filmmakers and one of the developers from the film. I really enjoyed it and highly recommend it to others.

If you missed my earlier post about Indie Game: The Movie, check out the trailer post here.

Double Fine Awesomeness!

Grim Fandango Box Cover

Inspiration that brings your passion for games to life, or afterlife.

I love Tim Schafer’s work.  He’s so awesome.  Who’s Tim Schafer you say?  Why he’s the fantastic guy (along with his awesome art, programming, and other useful things Team) who brought Grim Fandango, Day of the Tentacle, and helped to bring in the Secret of Monkey Island.    I am proud to say that I’m a kickstarter backer of his fabulous new game from Double Fine called Adventure!  (probably a placeholder name) but it’s an Adventure! game – so why not?  Yaharr!

Day of the Tentacle

I'd give my right tentacle to work with Tim.

He was looking to raise $400,000 but – no doubt because he is so awesome and gave us such stellar adventure games that we’ve been craving his games for the past umpteen billion years! (at least I have) – he raised over $3,300,000!  My gosh that is not only so cool, but it’s also exactly what he deserves.  To know that we love his talent and style and we bloody well want adventure games to come back!

I’m so excited about his endeavour that I’m beginning my own little adventure game (I’m only a team of one at this point).  I’ve got the concept of a kid going out in the rain with his umbrella and meeting various characters (thinking talking ducks, cats, etc.) but I also just want him to muck around in puddles and such and go on an adventure in his mind.  So perhaps I’ll scrap any dialogue and make a voiceless adventure.  That would be fun (maybe have little “Whees!” when the kid jumps or “ouch!” if the kid does something wrong or something like that.)  Oh and yes, I specifically want this to be a kid so bundled up in his rain coat that the kid is whatever gender you want.  (That’s not so important to the story so I want everyone to put what they feel is important into the character themselves.)

Anyway, that’s my thoughts for now.  I love Double Fine!  I love Tim Schafer!  and I love adventure games!  whoo!!! *runs off with arms gesticulating wildly*

I am Dovahkiin!

Huzzah!  I have gotten the Elder Scroll, gone over to Sovngarde, and defeated Alduin!  I am Dovahkiin!  Having completed the main quest I feel I have “finished” Skyrim and now will get to muck around doing whatever (which is still lots of fun, but also means I’ll be okay with working with the creator tool and not worrying so much if a save goes wrong.)

But to the Exciting stuff!  Here’s what my Priest Assassin Looks like!


Priest Assassin wearing Morokei Mask at Hrothgard


Argonian Priest Assassin at Hrothgard


My awesome game story:


I began as an Argonian Priest.  I did healing and Illusion (so I wouldn’t have to actually attack anyone – just get them to attack each other).  I wasn’t stealthing a lot then but found my illusion spells weren’t leveling up fast enough so did some enchanting and used a stamina stealing mace.  I loved that strategy.  Just whack ’em until they’re exhausted then finish them off.   Things were going well until the Bard college started looking interesting.  I didn’t want to give up my magical-ness I had been accruing as I had just started some of the mage quests at the college of Winterhold.   I started a new character which went to the bard college for a bit and then decided I would just do everything with the one character.  Well, I got bored one day and helped out a little kid doing some ritual wanting someone dead.  Well, he was part of an orphanage and I thought “just one evil deed to round out the character.  Besides I’m going to check out the evil quests eventually with this character.  Why not now?”.  Now I didn’t make my character sleep in inns – or much at all – so I did the assassination and went my merry way for quite a few levels before anything came about it.  About 10 levels later I was unearthing a dragon priest mask and thinking about how to solve the Labyrinth quest when I came across a quest that required me to go to sleep.  When I did, I suddenly woke up to the Dark Brotherhood asking me to complete some more assassinations.  I actually saved here and tried all sorts of ways to get out of it, but there wasn’t much option but to kill one of the characters or die myself.  So, I went through with it and considered just ignoring the assassin quests.

I went on to try companions helping me in quests so I could heal them and lightning bolt the enemies, but they kept getting in the way of my lightning bolts which I was getting quite good at.  Since I was so frustrated with them I thought I’d try a ranged attack that was a bit more precise – Archery.  This was a skill I was trying with the temporary character and really enjoying.  So I tried it out a bit and enjoyed the stealthy sniping.  That’s when I realized – Stealthy Archer Assassin! so cool!  And then even cooler – ASSASSIN PRIEST!  Life and Death with one character.  How even cooler!

And so, I went forth as the assassin priest.  Making potions and enchanting bows to great awesomeness.

My last aside which I think is worth mentioning.  right in the beginning I really enjoyed the underwater breathing of argonians.  I swam through the rivers EVERYWHERE.  So much! They were my transit system.  So cool.

Anyway, Check out Skyrim if you haven’t yet.  It’s lots of fun!

Mock DnD

So, I’ve been working on my latest in a series of role playing games of mine called “Mock DnD”.  This is a game all about making fun of (or mocking) Dungeons and Dragons.  I’ve gone through making fun of Traditional D&D games, LARPing, Vampire: The requiem, Goth Culture, Geek Culture, Puzzles, Mafia and Gangsters, Disco, and my latest game (Mock DnD 6) will be making fun of Board Games, Video Games, and LGBT Culture (It’s for a very specific group of friends).  I’m really excited to bring back my favourite cookie dough-wizard Mafia Crime Boss, Bauss, and bring in some new heroes!  They include Murio and Loogie: The Super Murio Duo (two dwarven adventurers),   Lunk (the grossly overweight Elven swordmaster known for his patented spinning move – people are more afraid of his big behind than his flailing sword), Noid Jackrabbit (avoid this noid, he’s a gymbunny who’s hugely buff, but is a pacifist at heart), and finally Simone the Sorceress (who looks surprisingly like a certain L. Croft with the two boob bombs she keeps in her front chest pockets), and more adventurer options abound.

Our heroes will be adventuring past snakes and ladders, through dangerous gloombas and gummy bears, and deep into the dark and mysterious dungeons where they must save Princess or pay off their debts to Bauss with their lives.

Rockin’ Plants VS Zombies!

So, Plants VS Zombies was on sale on Steam recently and I love me them Plants Vs Zombies. So I picked it up and went to town on it. I love it! so much fun! Here’s my winning strategy for Survival Pool (HARD).

Winning Plants vs Zombies Survival Pool (Hard)

Start with the sunflowers, split peas and the walls of nuts and quickly add the spike terrain so that the zombies are hurt as they attack the wall. Then add the right hand column of spikes and start upgrading the left column of spikes. (Upgrade the right ones first if against a level with vehicles so that the spikes don’t disappear when the vehicle drives on ’em) Then add your frozen peas and you’re good to go! With the water level, get at least one cattail early on (around when you’re adding the first column of spikes) and add the rest when you get the cash. Finally add the pumpkin walls going left to right. These are to protect your plants from the miners so your split peas can shoot the miners while you have no casualties. I forgot about the cattails redirecting to take out the miners, but it’s still cool.

I added the middle column of pumpkins in the centre just for fun.  Also, note the sunshine!  I have full!  I can’t get more! yahoo!  (got an achievement around 8000)

Global Game Jam 2012

The Global game Jam was great this year. I volunteered at the start and the finish. I love getting to be with all the enthusiasm and excitement of building a game over 48 hours. I had been quadruple-booked that weekend or else I would have joined in. Everyone wanted to do stuff that weekend, but that’s okay I got to be a part of the event, play some games, see friends, and generally have a great time the whole weekend.

Steven Pugh Starts a New Job!

Sample Show Content ListI’m really excited and honoured to get to work for Electric Playground! I will be their webmaster starting on Tuesday. This is really wonderful and feels like my dream of working in the Game Industry is reaching fruition more and more everyday.  This is so awesome!  We’ve got some good revitalization plans and goals to grow the site a hundred fold.  Wowee!  Excuse me for one moment.


Reviews on the Run*ahem* thank you. Electric Playground is a show (both online and television) that covers Video Games, Movies, Comic books and anything cool* (*i.e. geeky).  Greedy Productions also has a hysterical show called Reviews on the Run with reviews of shows, games, apps, and other great stuff.  It’s hilarious, informative, and fun!  A big thank you out to Victor Lucas, host and fantastic CEO of Greedy Productions Ltd. (the owning company of EP, Rotr, and Greedy Docs)!

Steve Jobs has Ended his Job

Steve Jobs has stepped down as CEO.  Wow!  Time to sell your Apple Stock!  hahaha.  Hopefully, it won’t be as drastic a fall as Microsoft took when Bill Gates left, but then again, Microsoft seemed to be trying to head every which way while Apple has always seemed quite unified in one direction.  So it should hold up well with new CEO, former COO, Mr. Cook.

What this means for Apple as they head forward is unsure right away stock-wise, but we’ll see in the coming months and years.

Check out the full article here.