Ninety: The Campaign for Mayor of Pittsburgh
Although the next Mayor of Pittsburgh, Bill Peduto (congrats!), was finally crowned, the game started two weeks before the election. Taking players across a board designed to include all 90 neighborhoods of Pittsburgh, political candidates campaign by attending events, soliciting votes, raising money and (what would politics be without it) participating in some political mudslinging.
Players are able to pick from 15 unique identities of a stereotypical candidate – from “The Barstool Philosopher” to “The Riverfront Defender” to “The Heir Apparent” to “The Sports Legend.”
Adam Schuck and Alex Pazuchanics created the game after receiving a $1,000 grant from The Sprout Fund through the Social Innovation Exchange’s (SIX) “Connect Your City” project. With the funding the pair was able to develop six prototypes with the design talent of CMU graduate Tara Helfer.
Drawing inspiration from their time working with Councilwoman Natalia Rudiak, Schuck and Pazuchanics created the concept of Ninety. Focusing on the unique neighborhoods of Pittsburgh, the pair saw the game as a way to get people involved in neighborhoods that were not their own.
The multicolored board outlining each neighborhood is accompanied with cards, dice, money and tiny wooden blocks that players place in each neighborhood as they gather support on their campaign.
Although it’s not available for sale just yet, the grant money has allowed the game to travel throughout coffee shops and taverns in the different neighborhoods of Pittsburgh. The first two packed tournaments played at Cannon Coffee and Bar Marco at the end of October. And Schuck and Pazuchanics are planning more tournaments for the near future. To sign up for later games check their Facebook page or their website.