Inspiration is indeed there and designing goes on

Written by designer Tony Fung

Alright, last time we ended up talking about the Kong Kong political situation and how it became very messy as many people saw that the election system proposed by the China government is not “really democratic”, so I decided to design a game that reflects the situation. You can read more on that here. So how does this system work?

Say if you want to take part in the election, anyone can submit their application. However before going to public vote, you first needed to be in the two to three candidates shortlisted by the “nomination committee”. The nomination committee is a small group of people that is appointed by the China government. It is only after you are shortlisted, you can hope to get elected as HK Chief executive by the public vote.

People think that the nomination committee totally dishonors the election system, as candidates that are not close to the China government (at least to some extent) would have no chance to be shortlisted by nomination committee, given the committee is full of people with strong pro-China’s view. Therefore it is totally possible that there is a candidate that receives stronger support by the HK public as they are viewed to “do the right thing for HK” rather than “do the right thing for China”. However, despite all the public support, they can never become chief executive, as they may be screened out by the nomination committee. Hence the view that the system proposed is not really democratic. This situation resulted to a 79-day large-scale occupy movement, internationally known as the “Umbrella Revolution”.

The Umbrella Revolution served as the starting point for this game, as several friends were asking me to explain them what was really happening. So I thought it would be easier for me to explain them through a game. Simply put, to win the game, you need to get maximum amount of public vote, but you first need to get enough vote from China government and nomination committee, otherwise you would simply be screened out by them.

When I first got the idea, I thought it would both be a fun game and a nice way to make people see the situation in HK. I was very excited for a while and quickly shared this with my friend Michael, another big board game player among my friends. We were both very enthusiastic and immediately brainstormed on how the game can work……

Now that we’ve set the basis, we will start talking a bit more about the designing part and how game mechanics would fit the theme. And yes, I will finally stop talking about politics and talk more about game design!

Until next time, remember, life is short, have some fun and play more board games.