University of Winnipeg geography professor Ryan Smith wants you to build the biggest city you can.
And bleed it dry until every last resource is gone.
In about an hour.
The 29-year-old budding board game entrepreneur recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to get his board game CITY on store shelves everywhere. The money raised over the month-long campaign will go towards manufacturing and packaging the game.
Smith says the concept for the game was hatched about a year ago when he and his sister came up with a cut-and-paste version of it.
Smith has been refining it ever since.
"I thought, ‘What the heck? Let's see how far I can take this'," he said. "It took a long, long time developing the art and videos and everything. Basically, it's just been a long road to see how far I could I actually take this, and it seems like pretty far if this thing goes through."
He says the point of the game is for players to build the largest city possible before the resources run out.
"Your goal is to consume everything as quickly as possible. You build little mines and factories and you log all the wood and farm all the fields and in that way you start collecting resources faster and faster. The game has acceleration to it. It starts kind of slow, but then everything picks up the pace.
"Once the resources are gone, then that's it. Game over."
Whoever has the biggest piece of the city wins.
"You can draw out a whole bunch of lessons I think about the effect cities have on the environment, the human impact on the environment, use of resources and city planning," he says. "It's a very capitalism-focused, resource-driven kind of doomsday game."
(Smith teaches human impact on the environment.)
The Kickstarter campaign started at the end of January and runs until March 1. Smith is also supported by gaming store Game Knight on Osborne Street.
He adds he did not consider going on Dragon's Den to pitch his game because he hasn't got any sales yet.
"I've seen about six board games being presented on Dragon's Den and each one of them gets turned down because they want to see sales. They want value, and this doesn't have any sales yet."
He says if the Kickstarter campaign works and he gets some sales behind him, going in front of the Dragons will be next on his list of things to do.
"I'm viewing it as a big experiment. I have no idea where this is going. I'm doing it for the fun of it."