Jorge Zhang

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Did I seriously just make a game called “Naked CEOs”?

Answer: Yes, yes I did.

I recently participated in a contest called the 24 hour Design contest. The rules are simple: you have 24 hours to design a tabletop game. Also, the game must include some element of “bureaucracy”.

Anyway, I have been kicking around this idea of a mechanic for exploring a dungeon for a while, and I wanted to try it out. So then I realized that instead of exploring a dungeon, I could take advantage of this contest and have the players explore an office! Unfortunately, that seemed really dull, and I felt that I needed to make something a little bit more interesting. I also needed there to be a reason that you are avoiding enemies, or in this case your employees.

Mr. Bean was the inspiration for this game.

That’s when I remembered what is perhaps my favorite Mr. Bean moment ever: he locks himself outside of his hotel room, and he’s naked. So he goes around the hotel hiding from the other guests, looking for clothes. It’s really funny, and exactly the kind of reason that you’d be hiding from your employees!

So the premise of the game is that you are a wealthy CEO, and you wake up naked for some unexplained reason. If you are the first player to collect all 4 pieces of clothing you win the game. Alternatively, each time you are caught by an employee you must bribe them with 1 million dollars of your salary. If you are the last player with a salary, you also win the game.

An example of a playtest of the game. I didn’t even bother printing half the cards or the tokens since honestly it would probably be a waste of ink. Luckily the game is super simple, so it was pretty easy to substitute the pieces, and use some of the original paper cards I made in the concept phase.

Anyway, I was surprised to find that I really enjoyed playing the game when I was playing it, mostly for the humor value. There is also some strategy going on here, which I was happy to see. There’s a ton of luck, but I think it’s a little bit forgivable considering the theme. That being said, there are a few pretty significant issues that I didn’t get to fix as the contest is only so long. Firstly, sometimes you can miss that a newly placed room contains a piece of clothing since you have to keep referencing the 4 clothing cards. Secondly, the game can drag on… especially if the right rooms are not being drawn. This is doubly bad since it takes up a ton of table space. Finally, there are some minor placement issues and some edge cases where it could be impossible to place a room.

Anyway, the contest voting is open right now, and I would really appreciate it if you checked it out! You can find the voting for the contest open on Board Game Geek here:

Would you actually play this game, or is it terrible? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for reading!

© 2020 Jorge Zhang