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Author Topic: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty  (Read 1173 times)

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RoboticDinosaur

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Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« on: February 10, 2013, 09:27:26 PM »

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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2013, 09:28:20 PM »

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R^2

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2013, 04:08:01 PM »

Actually turned this over in my head a few times on the drive home today, trying to pick out what I didn't like about it and how it could be fixed.

Namely:
- Strategy takes a big backseat to chance. If you roll low on the dice, well, tough.
- Not everyone owns d8s or d12s. Hell, I play D&D and I don't even know where my d12 is.
- The gameplay and rules are pretty vague, given that each got about a paragraph.

Here's what I came up with. I still consider it unplayable!

---

Setup:
Each player selects or chooses at random one champion card. Each player takes one each of the Attack, Defense, and Skill cards and places them in front of him on the table in his play area. Each player takes a number of stamina tokens and power tokens (based on the champion chosen) and places them on their champion card. Shuffle the Combat deck. Each player is dealt a hand of three cards from the Combat deck, then place the Combat deck in the middle of the table within easy reach of all players.

Decide which player gets the "Initiative" token for the first turn.

---

Goal
The goal of the game is to reduce all opponents' stamina to 0. A player with 0 stamina is eliminated from the game. If there is one player left with stamina greater than 0, he wins the game. If during one turn all remaining players' stamina is reduced to 0, the game ends in a draw.

---

The Turn
Roll Phase:
Starting with the player holding the "Initiative" token and proceeding clockwise around the table, each player rolls three six-sided dice. The player then places one die each on the "Attack", "Defense", and "Skill" cards on the table in front of him. The player then adds his champion's Power tokens to his choice of the "Attack", "Defense", or "Skill" cards.

The number on the die gives the player the value for his Attack Pool, Defense Pool, and Skill Pool for the turn. For each Power token, increase the effective value on the die by +2. Example: The Attack card has a die placed on it with a value of 5, and one Power token. The player's Attack Pool this turn is 7.

One all players have placed their dice and tokens, proceed to the Challenge Phase.


Challenge Phase:
Starting with the player holding the "Initiative" token and proceeding clockwise around the table, players declare their attacks against other players. To declare, each player names the champion that their champion is attacking this turn. In games with more than two players, only one target may be declared.

Playing Cards:
Each player may play one Combat Card during the Challenge Phase each turn. To play a Combat Card, the player's Skill Pool must be equal to or greater than the Skill Cost of the card. A card is played by when a player announces the card and places it on the table in front of him. Any player may play a card, before or after attack targets are declared -- the Initiative token doesn't matter.

Once a card is no longer in effect -- usually the End of Turn phase of the turn they were played -- it is placed faceup in the discard pile. If any player needs to draw a card when there are no cards in the Combat Card deck to draw, shuffle the discard pile and turn it facedown as a new Combat Card deck.

Resolution Phase:
All players who are declared targets of an attack compare the Attack Pool of their aggressor to their own Defense Pool. If the Attacker's Pool is greater, the champion loses Stamina tokens equal to the amount the Attack exceeded his Defense. If the Defense Pool is greater, no damage is dealt.

In games with more than two players, if one player is the recipient of multiple attacks, his full Defense Pool counts against each attack. It is not divided between them.

If any player has 0 Stamina tokens, he is eliminated from the game.


End of Turn Phase
Combat Cards with effects that last until the end of the turn are placed in the discard pile. Each player removes all dice from their Attack, Defense, and Skill cards and returns their Power Tokens to their Champion card. Each player draws until they have three Combat Cards in their hands. The player with the Initiative token passes it to the player on his left.

---

Sample Champions:
Human
Stamina: 20, Power: 2
Ability: Well-Trained. During game setup and during each End of Turn phase, draw until you have four cards in your hand instead of three.

Elf
Stamina: 18, Power: 2
Ability: Nimble: Each turn, add +4 to the Elf's Skill pool.

Orc
Stamina: 22, Power: 1
Ability: Ferocity: Each turn, add +1 to the Orc's Attack pool. The Orc may divide his Attack Pool among any number of opponents, attacking all of them in one turn.

Dwarf
Stamina: 25, Power: 1
Ability: Heavy Armor: Each turn, add +2 to the Dwarf's Defense pool.

Gnome
Stamina: 18, Power: 2
Ability: Tricky: When the Gnome spends a Power token, it adds +3 to the Gnome's Attack, Defense, or Skill pool instead of +2.

Halfling
Stamina: 18, Power: 3
Ability: Luck: Each turn when the dice are rolled, the Halfling may reroll one die. He must take the result of the second roll, even if it is lower.

Ogre
Stamina: 22, Power: 2
Ability: Vicious: If the Ogre has the Initiative token, his Attack, Defense, and Skill Pools are +1 for that turn.

Wizard
Stamina: 18, Power, 3
Ability: Magic: The Wizard may play any number of cards from his hand during the Challenge Phase. The Wizard's Skill Pool must be equal to or greater than the combined Skill Cost of all cards played.

---

Sample Combat Cards:

Power Hit
Cost: 4
Effect: Your Attack Pool is +2 this turn.

Vicious Strike
Cost: 8
Effect: Your Attack Pool is +4 this turn.

Parry
Cost: 2
Effect: Your Defense Pool is +2 this turn.

Block
Cost: 5
Effect: Your Defense Pool is +4 this turn.

Feint
Cost: 4
Effect: Your Attack Pool is -2 this turn. Your Attack Pool is +6 next turn. Keep this card in front of you until the end of next turn.

Tactical Gambit
Cost: 6
Effect: Your Defense Pool is -2 this turn. Your Attack Pool and Defense Pool are both +2 next turn. Keep this card in front of you until the end of next turn.

No Guard Stance
Cost: 8
Effect: Add the amount of your Defense Pool to your Attack Pool. Your Defense Pool becomes 0 for the rest of the turn.

Dirty Trick
Cost: 2
Effect: Add +6 to your Skill Pool. You may play another Combat Card this turn.

Expert Evasion
Cost: 10
Effect: All attacks declared against you are treated as having Attack Pool of 0.

Element of Surprise
Cost: 4
Effect: Draw three cards from the Combat Card deck. Choose one and put it directly into play in front of you. Discard the others.

Graceful Technique
Cost: X
Effect: The cost of this card is equal to your Skill Pool. Add half of this card's Skill Cost value (rounded down) to your Attack Pool.

Insurmountable Guard
Cost: X
Effect: The cost of this card is equal to your Skill Pool. Add half of this card's Skill Cost value (rounded down) to your Defense Pool.

Lich
Cost: 8
Effect: If your Stamina is reduced to 0 this turn, you win the game.

First Aid
Cost: 6
During the Resolution Phase this turn, for each attack declared against you, compare the attacker's Attack Pool and your Defense Pool as normal. If your Defense Pool is greater than the attacker's Attack Pool, you gain Stamina tokens equal to the amount your Defense Pool was greater. You may not have more Stamina Tokens than the maximum listed on your Champion card.
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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2013, 10:37:18 AM »

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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2013, 11:08:36 AM »

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R^2

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2013, 01:25:13 PM »

I get the impression you play a lot of MtG and maybe not a lot of board games. Perhaps this would work better as a deckbuilding game like Dominion? Unrelated consideration: Lunch Money.

I wrote my rules to support a multiplayer game in theory (with the obvious drawback that e.g. a four-player game demands a lot of dice, since everyone rolls at the same time every turn), then made a champion who excels in that sort of game. In my experience games with a group of focused players at the table are more fun than games with only two.

And yes, I made the setup into cards so they could be stored with the rest of the deck. This was inspired by owning both Arkham Horror and Elder Sign -- AH has encounter cards, equipment cards, Ancient One cards, and Investigator cards, and all of them are different sizes. ES has all of those but only two sizes, so it's much easier to set up and pack up.
Even my setup has a deck of cards, dozens of tokens, and (players x3) dice, so it's already more sprawling than I'm comfortable with.

Other thoughts:
The Initiative token is a liability because you declare your dice setup first, and an advantage because you deal damage first in the Resolution phase. This probably isn't strategically balanced.

Defense is given slightly better priority than Attack (compare Orc to Dwarf, Parry to Power Hit). Skills are given more for less still, since they just power one option each round. This might be a bad design choice.

I'm imagining Stamina tokens as being marked as one, three, or five stamina each (Elder Sign again). This saves some space but requires making change as you take damage.
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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2013, 03:24:10 PM »

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R^2

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2013, 07:38:26 PM »

but I also play some D&D... That counts as a board game, right?

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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2013, 01:25:14 AM »

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2013, 06:16:25 AM »

You're really trying to make this a dedicated deck-construction game, but there isn't enough game to make that happen. Magic has five colors each dedicated to a gimmick, creatures, sorceries, library management, graveyard management, and probably a dozen other details I've forgotten because I haven't played a game of Magic in years. Pokemon has the mons themselves, trainers for global effects, and energy managment/investment. At the end of the day, Blue Majesty compares Attack to Defense. It's not complex enough.

I'm telling you as someone who has actually played them, this idea would work better as a more casual card game. (Not well, just better.)

Let's change contexts. Let's say you were designing a video game... But the only video game you had ever played was Dragon Quest. Ignoring all other aspects of games and game culture, you played Dragon Quest from the first game in the series to the last, to 100% completion. What would a game based on that be like?

(Well, it'd be like Mother. But Itoi designed Mother with an extensive filmmaking career behind him already, so the narrative is good! And the gameplay is -- inarguably -- utter shit.)

And even if the game was good, would it be good enough to go toe-to-toe with the bestselling game series of all time? I don't know if you were ever in a game store in 1998, but there were a hell of a lot of me-too imitators, almost all of whom are gone and forgotten today.

Because that is what I'm seeing here. You're trying to design a Magiclike, without much of a grasp on what makes Magic appealing or how tabletop game design has evolved since 1993.

The best advice I can give you for this project or any other is: go play more games. Play Ticket to Ride and see that there are more compelling settings than "Let's me an' you fight!". Go play some Munchkin (or if you're not steeped in D&D lore, Zombie Munchkin or another spinoff) to experience real luck-based gameplay and see how games can be fun almost entirely due to setting. Go play some Fluxx, and see how a casual card game can be fun and also over in ten minutes. Play some Arkham Horror to see that Good and Complicated are not mutually exclusive, then play some Elder Sign to see how an idea can be refined and simplified and made better. Go play Agricola and Settlers of Catan and -- hell, just go play anything that's ever won Spiel des Jahres. You're not looking for ideas to crib, you're trying to learn what makes good games good (and bad games bad), so you can make your own projects better.

Otherwise we-the-Brontos, and #finalfight, are probably going to dismiss your next big idea out of hand, too.
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RoboticDinosaur

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Re: Brand new Tri-die System TCG: Blue Majesty
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2013, 04:29:45 PM »

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