This Drinkin' Dragons design puzzle is endlessly frustrating and fun. It would be for kiddies, so it would not be for adults. It includes alcohol and its effects, so it would not be for kiddies.
 
 

New idea. Say you've got a grid of drinks, 7 x 7 or 8 x 8, with circles showing individual drinks, face down. It's a memory game. That's not a great idea, so far.

Dragons competing to consume drinks is weird, and in any case not working. What about a co-operative game? So

Co-operative (cooperative, whatever)
Grid of individual drinks, face down
a memory game
maybe, sometimes, a bit of route planning

Think of how this would work, everyone travelling around 1-3 spaces helping everyone else with tips about where to find drinks. Some drinks would be more common than others, e.g. black coffee vs. kofola.
 

Running into a drink that is wrong for various reasons (allergy, lactose intolerance, just don't drink tea, coffee, alcohol) is something to be worked out, but for now it means you lose a turn. There will be a system where once an alcoholic drink is consumed, the character can't fly ("Don't drink and fly") and can't communicate for a time. By can't communicate I mean no speech or body language about locations and desired drinks, although you can babble about irrelevant things like popes, politicians and pugilism.

Back to the fun business of themed characters/dragons.
Marcello gets cinotto and has coffee rules (espresso at any time, cappucino only before turn x).
Ivan gets Russian drinks (maybe general, kvas and social vodka). Russian drinks include vodka, kvas, tarragon drink and Baikal. When consuming vodka socially Ivan must give a toast.
Sonny and Sandy are a couple of characters who like Caribbean products, but one is more alcohol-friendly.
Connie the connoisseur is more inclined to get obscure drinks.
Helga the health nut. She gets things like carrot juice, purple corn juice and green tea. She avoids coffee and alcohol. Avoid the root beer float. (Tracking calories is not being done)
Anne has anaphylaxis. This character should carry a physical EpiPen in hand while flipping/revealing a drink with the same hand. If you happen to run into peanut punch without the epipen, you are out of the game.
The coffee addict gets coffee three times (probably general, specific and social). This dragon must get a coffee first before registering anything else.
Arnoldo the alcoholic gets three alcoholic drinks (probably general, specific and social).
Sindy likes wine. I'm not thrilled with putting alcohol and friendliness together, but we'll sort something out.
A Friendly Fred character who has three drinks with others. Which drinks?
Arcticus, who likes hot drinks (general, hot chocolate and social). Neat name.
 

With all this talk about alcohol, note that alcoholic drinks are only a little minority of the drinks, and players will try to avoid alcoholic drinks. Most of the drinks are exotic things like guarana.
 

Bug:
It turns out it's easy to say memory game, but I didn't think through what that entails.
John finds Sorrel, at location C5. Samantha needs sorrel. Samantha goes to sorrel. Steve finds purple corn juice. Keith needs purple corn juice. Keith goes to purple corn juice. Steve finds coffee. Sally needs coffee. Sally goes to coffee. That does not sound like a fun game.

Bug fixes:
Let's try a combination of these rules:
Dragons fly around for the first nine turns. They take a look around, but nothing is being consumed, and we don't yet know what to get. But after all that flying around, dragons become thirsty.
On the tenth turn players find out their character. We don't yet know all the drinks that will be sought, but we know that Jittery Jack is going to want some coffee (and soon!), Ivan is inclined to get Russian drinks and Helga likes healthful stuff. Revealing characters late is mechanically nice, but a little odd for players.
After that other drinks are desired both incrementally and randomly. Hey Sam, where do you think that tea was?
 

I think there should be a way to count the number of turns, for more than one reason.
 

You get your drinks by yourself. However, every once in a while you are instructed to, say, go for coffee with someone, share the same space at the same time (which raises practical questions). Oddly, this really just works for coffee, tea and alcohol.
 

I'm thinking character sheets that have n number (six or seven) of empty spots that will be filled with desired drinks. The character has n cards specific to the character, random order, face down. Some way of revealing cards during certain turns. As instructed, during turn ten you take one of the random cards, turn it face up and put it in the first empty spot on the character's sheet. Maybe the card instructs you to randomly select any drink, and that will be the drink you desire. It turns out you want to get tea (which is more likely than dandelion and burdock). Drinks do not have to be consumed in order. Well .. the coffee drinker has a bit of a schedule. Something can be worked out.

During Helga's fifteenth turn her card says she should randomly select a drink from a list of healthful drinks. Or she is instructed to specifically get carrot juice.
On the twentieth turn Arnoldo the alcoholic is instructed to go for a drink (alc) with someone else.
On the 22nd turn Marcello the Italian turns over a card which instructs him to randomly select any drink, which turns out to be banana milk.
Connie the connoisseur's card instructs her to randomly select a drink, but duplicates are removed from the drinks to be selected, so tea is not more likely than dandelion and burdock. The connoisseur is not a friend of alcohol.
Ordinary Ed(uardo) is instructed to randomly select a drink, again. Ed is allergic to pineapples.
Marcello is instructed to get cinotto. No randomness there.
Tina the tea drinker is instructed to get a random drink.
Sindy is instructed to get wine. Sindy is both friendly and wine friendly. She is later instructed to drink wine with someone else. She also consumes a root beer float with someone else.
One of the coffee addict's three cards that have coffee also states that he misses the next turn because he has to pee. Odds are this will not be used because it is a disgusting business. Thematic though. For this turn the player is unable to communicate, as he is occupied. Maybe I will do it.
 

So should we use a grid? For now, officially, we are using a big ring of 64 drink positions. This has a grab bag of advantages. Dragons would fly far. Circles are pleasant. This would allow space for dragon figures.

There are other possible layouts. There could be a triangular layout, with 10 or 11 rows. There are possible layouts with a line, usually a closed loop. A spiral.
 

We looked at the trees. Let's look at the forest. A dragon looks for six* drinks, a co-operative memory game for a few players with a big ring of 64 face down drinks. How long would a game last? Would it be good? Would people like it? Only one way to find out. (I know I would like it because of the drinks)

*Six or seven. I like six, three specialised and three not.
 

Do dragons drink from flagons? Dragons and Flagons is an alternate name. However, it doesn't make so much sense when you think about it. Have you ever seen a dragon drinking mauby from a flagon?
 
 
 
 


 
 

He seems excited.