Alright...I've searched...I've read...and I haven't found exactly what I'm looking for...so...here goes nothing.
I've caught the Permaculture bug...and I'm raising my daughter (currently 4.75 yo) as Permaculturally as possible. I have already written her a mini novel (14 chapters), i'm working on book 2 right now for her, and we used to garden as much as possible (currently living in a RV so that's sorta shot for the short term). Anyways one thing that her and I love to do is play board games...With Christmas on the calendar pretty soon I purchased her some new games to play and i was thinking this morning that a Permaculture game would be a very interesting game that could teach kids and potentially introduce new brains to the concept. I ran this thought experiment around my head for awhile (trying to modify Monopoly into Permopoly, but the entire concept seemed flawed...) until i came up with a general concept (I'll explain below). What i need now is someone to run this thought experiment with me until a reasonable concept has been landed on and a prototype could be tested. (Small sidebar about me, I'm an engineer with lots of experience with projects (management and implementation), so now that this is stuck in my head it's going to be tough to not see it though).
Anyways here is the rough outline of what i'm thinking.
Permaculture Board Game
General Layout: A central resource board and satellite homesteads. Each player would have their own homestead which is on the outskirts of the central resource board. The central resource board would contain all the resources that exist off our own homestead (things like, town, markets, lakes, rivers, forests, mountains, highways, ocean/beach etc.) Each game would have a different central board which would be generated by placing resource cards face down on the central resource board...Once the game starts they would be revealed and the players would have to make some logical decisions about placement (i.e. if an ocean and a beach card were revealed but town somehow was in the middle that wouldn't work, so obvious flaws would be corrected...moving the lake closer to your homestead because you want to have access to fish isn't going to fly though.). Anyways each player would also place homestead resources on their site and reveal them once the game started. These would consist of things like current horticultural state (trees, grasses, etc.), site topography / aspect (this will come into play later), any structures already existing, giant rocks, etc.
Gameplay: Each round consists of 4 seasons (I'm sure you can guess which ones
). Each season each player will get a certain amount of actions they can perform, and will start with some money and resources (already on their land). The goal is to collect the resources required to advance your homestead to thriving. Will you collect lumber to build a shelter or plant a garden? Will you sell your produce in town to generate money so you can hire help or try to build that shelter on your own? Do you want to try to bring community members onto your homestead, there's big benefit but pretty large risk too. Since each resource board is unique and each homestead is unique the same solution won't always apply to all homesteads...did you get southern facing aspect...well growing things might be good for you...ohhh northern facing....steep slope...lots of rocks...ouch going to be hard to grow a lot of food...maybe building a community or harvesting resources from the central resource board is the way to go...(hopefully more options arise than that...but trying to be concise here). So each season you spend your available actions to advance your projects...build a pond...maybe that is 2 action points...plant a garden...maybe that is 1...each action will help you depending on the events that arise. Each player will draw an event card (they can be sorted by general (winter/summer) season so you aren't drawing blizzard in the summer). This could be good or bad, and you will have to adjust your actions to work around the events as they enter your game. At the end of each season you will need to either have enough food to feed your homestead (family, community or self depending), or have enough cash to buy food. If you cannot feed or buy food for your community you either lose members or are out of the game (unless you have friendly neighbors). After a set number of years (4 rounds to a year, i was originally thinking 10 years) whoever has the most food, community members, structures, money etc (general resources) is declared the Permaculture winner. There is a bit of luck involved as well. Spend an action point to learn about gardening...great...when you go to harvest your food you can add +1 to your dice roll...etc. Also if you want to do things out of season you certainly can...plant a garden in fall...to harvest in the winter...that's fine...you will have some negatives and it will cost extra actions to do...but you can if you have to.
So that is a bit of a rough concept...i have some "art" (I would like to emphasize again here...engineer...not artist) and other ideas I've run through the ol' dome, but I thought I would see if anyone else was interested in something like this or if people generally thought it was a good idea. (even if everyone says it sucks...i'll probably continue and my daughter and i will play by ourselves