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Arena Combat

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NetWolf
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Joined: 12/31/1969

I'm working on a game based on the progression of a gladiator as they worked their way through the Galdatorial Circuit in ancient Rome. They will begin as individuals, captured, imprisoned, and forced into the arena, and then allow them to acquire fame until they have amassed enough reknown that they are requested to fight in the Circus Maximus. There the players will have the first oportunity to test their refined skills against each other in the final showdown to determine who wins their freedom.

My question is, considering half of the game will be players against static encounters, how can I work the combat system? I would like to avoid simply Random Number generation such as dice, but if the concept is interesting I may be able to work with them.

stumps
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

That entirely depends on what style and level of detail the combat will be, as well as what level of detail of stats/skills you are going to be giving the player-combatants.

Without knowing either of those two things, I can't really offer any advice.

It really depends on how in-depth you are going with it.
I mean...cast of dice for each round of fighting, something like RISK, or a cast of dice for each blow, more like an RPG, or....no dice at all and instead using cards?

Too many variables are unknown with what you've posted so far, for me anyways.

Julius
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

One way you could do it is to have a stack of cards (think 3x5 or larger) for your static encounters. This adds a sense of excitement too, because players won't know what they are dealing with until they are thrust into the arena.

All of the combat statistics could be listed on these cards. As a bonus, each could have varying amounts of 'reknown' rewarded. Fighting a pack of starved dogs might give a fair amount, but if you beat a lion you gain a lot of fame!

I assume your game has stages, and the players improve their stats as they survive fights. If this is the case, be sure to color-code the backs of the cards so that players know the rough difficulty of the encounter. (blue = easy, green = medium, yellow = difficult, orange = very difficult, red = extremely difficult). No fair throwing a new guy up against an unbeatable foe, you know.

This way, you still have a 'static' list of encounters, but with some randomness, too.

Hmm. I just re-read your post, and I guess I answered it wrong. As far as a diceless combat system, I would suggest using cards. You could have cards like "chop" "slice" "stab" and so forth (please use more creative names though... you don't want your game to be bland). Add in weapon cards and shield cards that you player can carry (face up in front of them). A number of games already use this type of mechanic, so you'd have to think up a way to make your game unique.

Hope that helps.

stumps
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

After I read Julius' post, I think I understand better what you are asking....

If you just don't want dice, and you want to do something other than random attacks, such as card drawing attacks, you can go with point systems.

The more reputation you get, the more points you are given to you combat purse.

You combat purse allows you to acquire new maneuvers to go into battle with.

Using maneuvers in battle costs a certain amount of points as well (like putting cards into play in magic the gathering without the cards)

Weapons could be purchased with points as well, and add to attack stats.
equally so with armor and defensive maneuver stats....

You choose you moves, one at a time in less than 5 or 10 seconds per decision (so to keep the speed feeling going).

Each attack has comparable stats to other attacks, defenses, etc... maneuvers, and the better maneuver in stat wins.

the max amount of points for in combat maneuvers could be per the entire match, or per round....depending what you want.

The max number of combat points to spend on carrying out maneuvers can be something that a player can spend their combat purse points on instead of acquiring or raising maneuvers.

that's one such direction.....

(sorry, typing one-handed with baby in the other ;) )

Infernal
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

You could have certain actions that the player can use. These would come in 3 types: Basic Actions and Advanced Manouvres and Finnishing Moves.

Basic actions can be used multiple times in a bout, but if used on one turn they can not be uned the next turn (this will create a bit of variety in the actions).

Advanced manouvres can only be used a limited number of times in a bout (generally only once but if you let players use cards they could use them more than once).

Finishing Mooves are used to end a bout. The better the finnishing move the more reputation the player gets).

Each action (either basic or advanced) has 3 stats that are assosiated with it. They are:
Style: This increases the player's reputation that they gain from the bout but only if they win the bout. If they loose the loose this much reputation.
Defence: This is the target number that the opponent must overcome to gain the opertunity to make a finnishing move.
Attack: This is the value used in overcomeing the defence stat.

All stats are added continiously through the bout (eg is one action gave the player +2 Defence and another move gave the player +3 Defence the they would have a total of +5 defence).

Player's can buy equipment that gives them a starting value in each of the stats (eg Plumed Helm: +2 Style, Net +2 Attack, etc). These could be purchased between bouts.

I would have it that player's arn't killed by finnishing moves but just beaten. The style gained by the player during the bout will act as a penalty if the player looses the bout and is there fore subtracted from their reputation. This makes Style a bet that the player will win the match.

Gogolski
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Joined: 07/28/2008
Arena Combat

Just a couple of ideas:

Goal: BUY yourself free. That's right, you get money if you win fights. When you get enough, you buy yourself free, but the same money (unfortunately) is also needed to buy equipment.
This way, the player with the best gear, might have less money than the bare-hand-fighter and loose the game, despite his obvious fighting-advantage...

Fame: The amount of fame you get, depends on what foe you fight. If you loose a fight, you loose fame. Fame determines how much money you'll get when you win a fight.

Cards: I once had the idea to replace the "fighting-with-dice" with "fighting-with-cards" in an RPG. The idea was that you got a number of cards that you could play depending on your class. (Your basic moves) Then when leveling up, you could choose from other cards to get a bigger (and more varied) deck of moves. Players attacking eachother, simultaniously put open their first card, then the next, etc... Certain card-combos would allow multiple cards in a turn, or delayed play (react to what the other player is doing...) I never went from idea to something more concrete, though...

Most important problem is that a card-system like this would probably not work very well against static foes. So players would need to 'dare' each other or be 'teamed up' in pairs or trios against each-other.

Static foes: If you want static foes, you'll have to figure out some board-AI for the foes. This could lead to a bunch of solitairy games going on at once with one final clash to elect a winner...

Cheese!

NetWolf
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

Some interesting ideas to work with here. Has ayone played the Marvel Overpower game that came out about 8-10 years ago? It was a CCG where all the characters in the marvel universe were given four stats and the deck consisted mostly of numbered power cards. You could only use a power card that was equal to or less than the corresponding stat each character had. Someone with 5 Strength could use a Strnegth Power Card with a value of 1-5, but not 6-8.

What if I did something similar to that? There would be a deck of combat cards (From which everyone would draw, thus keeping the number of cards down.) and on each player's turn they would draw a 'hand' of combat cards which they could use on this turn and this turn only. The static encounters would have a hand of their own (Played by one of the other players, thus engaging two players on any given turn, reducing boredom). The Static encounters would have a hand size as listed on their own card (Drawn from a separate pile) which would correspond to the difficulty of the encounter.

While it may not be realistic, the players would choose which encounter level they want to challenge for that round (Which would take the place of their Gladorial owner...they wouldn't want to damage their goods, but at the same time they need to put on a good show!). Easy encounters would have lower stats, Medium would be about equal to a standard gladiator player, and Hard would be a challenge that could only be attempted once the player has gained a bit of fame.

Each encounter would give you a certain amount of fame based on how the match ended and the difficulty of the opponent. Easy encounters grant +0 Fame, Medium +1 Fame, Hard +2 Fame.

I'm not entirely sure about how to do the hits/life system. Perhaps give each competitor 5 hits for the round before they collapse. Once they are collapsed, the gladiator would gain Fame based on the number of the card they use to "finish" their opponent. If it's a close match, they may not have any cards left and are considered to have defeated their opponent with a "1". If the match was a blow-out and they have an 8 in their hand still, and they use that to finish their opponent, they would receive 7 fame (1 of the fame would be required to kill their opponent, while the rest is pure fluff).

The more fame a character has, the greater access they have to better equipment. Thus allowing them to fight against better opponents, gaining more fame.

Julius
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

I'd actually swap that, and award more fame for more even-matches, and less fame for blowouts. That way, a well-equipped player isn't earning too much fame for easy fights, while the poorly equipped player earns next to nothing for a fight that nearly cost him his life.

What if you placed the fame on the action cards. Each card you play would have 'Style' as well as other stats. Each time you successfully perform a move, you set that card aside.

"Overhead Cleave" might not give much style, but have lots of damage... while "Pump up the Crowd" isn't even an attack, but has lots of style.

At the end of the match, you collect your 'style points.' - plus maybe some of your opponent's as well.

OutsideLime
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Joined: 12/31/1969
Arena Combat

Quote:
I'd actually swap that, and award more fame for more even-matches, and less fame for blowouts. That way, a well-equipped player isn't earning too much fame for easy fights, while the poorly equipped player earns next to nothing for a fight that nearly cost him his life.

What if you placed the fame on the action cards. Each card you play would have 'Style' as well as other stats. Each time you successfully perform a move, you set that card aside.

"Overhead Cleave" might not give much style, but have lots of damage... while "Pump up the Crowd" isn't even an attack, but has lots of style.

At the end of the match, you collect your 'style points.' - plus maybe some of your opponent's as well.

I like it. Especially if Style points go a long way towards helping your Glad along the road to victory. Showmanship is an important trait for a successful gladiator, and is one of the elements that will add flavour to what is otherwise a straight melee game. This could give players incentive to try off-the-wall moves and risky combos, rather than using the same bread-n-butter moves all the time.

Plus the "economy" of the arena should not be ignored. Training, weaponry, even costumes, should be "purchasable" and usable to improve your fighter.

~Josh

Sen
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Joined: 12/20/2010
Arena Combat

I run a MMA simulator (think UFC / Pride FC) where the rules are such that a lower ranked fighter increases in "fame" for beating a higher ranked fighter and vice versa.

Also (though I didn't do this in my rule set), it makes sense that getting beaten by a higher ranked opponent shouldn't make for as big a loss and that wining against a lower ranked opponent shouldn't be so rewarding either.

We use a combination of Star Points (essentially Fame) that goes up and down depending on how the fights end, injuries, and ranks. We tally a fight purse based on strings of wins/losses, titles held/lost, etc.

We do a show/win purse, with the win being double the show purse (i.e. all fighters make money, even if they lose). The show purse is equal to Star Points x Fight Purse.

for more info, you can check out

http://forums.cjb.net/junglechaos-forum-121.html

There's more in there on fighter development, etc. that may be of interest.

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