There were three project teams by the end of the semester, each working on its own game. I was purely coincidence, but I was pleased that they three games are completely different. The Top Reporter is a party game in the vein of Cranium and Pictionary.
Make sure your teeth are whitened, and your hair is brushed because the National News Network Association (The NNNA) has opened up a primetime spot on National television for one lucky news crew to do an hour-long report of their choosing. You will be put through the toughest challenges a reporter can face to prove your worth to the NNNA.
You will be tested on Weather, Breaking News, Sports, and plenty more. There is one thing your crew has to understand: news happens at anytime and it can be about anything. So, ready your team to out-broadcast your opponents, and try not to lose focus.
There are four challenge categories, each represented by its own deck of cards. Live in 5 requires players to report on random topics for certain periods of time, sometimes stipulating that it be done without laughing, or requiring them to incorporate specific words.
Learn the Lingo tests players’ knowledge of journalism vocabulary, or may ask them to write news story titles within specified parameters. Co-Anchor presents news-related trivia or pits teams against each other in an attempt to pass off the story, “Back to you!”, and not be caught reporting when the timer runs out. Where’s the Weather? finds players standing in front of a US map, trying to remember in which state Tuscaloosa resides.
The team did a good job theming the game, providing props, like a microphone, that helped players get into character. There were still plenty of issues to be worked out with the challenges, and it could probably be shortened significantly, but the game provided a fair amount of variety in the challenges and loads of laughter. It went over well with the mostly college student playtesters.