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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

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Nestalawe
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Hey All,

Alright then. I am keen on big multiplayer empire-building strategic wargames - building up troops/armies, taking over land, getting into lots of fights - the aim being to be the biggest and mightiest.

What I'm not keen on is player elimination.

I am going to begin designing a Fantasy/Strategic/Empire-Building/Wargame, with an 'Epic' theme such as can be seen in games akin to Divine Right. The main aim generally being to take out the other players. What I would like to see would be to be able to incorporate mechanics whereby players can still stomp each other without fear of a player getting wiped out of the game and have to sit on the sidelines for the rest of the evening.

What are peoples thoughts on this?

I stumbled across 'Emperor Of China' (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/1987) where a player may 'convince another player to merge with his empire'. This idea may be developed further, where a player may force another player into submission somehow.

Another option would be for an eliminated player to take another type of role in the game, as rebels/guerillas in their occupied empire, or maybe as dispossed heroes wandering the land...

Look forward to hearing some ideas!

Anonymous
Elimination culd be avoided by players becoming Helpers

Hey,
The players who get eliminated culd become helpers.They basically can continue moving across the board.For example if the eliminated player(A)is next to another player(B).The opponent(C) culd ask player A to move his pawn such that the player B gets eliminated.
For which C would have to give some remuneration to A.
Things could also be developed,like there could be a bid & player B could bid for an amount that is more than A,so that he is rescued.The decision is upto player A on whom he wants to support.
This could basically give importance to the eliminated players.They basically start thinking of strategies which would help other players win & they could make a profit out of the proposition.

All the best to you!

Nestalawe
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Cheers Kanaka!

Not quite sure if I got exactly what you meant, but your post did bring up a few considerations.

An eliminated, or 'beaten down' player should still have some viable reason for continuing/wanting to continue playing the game.

Can they still 'win' the game? Or maybe their winning conditions would change/become harder.

They should still have some form of power.

If it is a situation where a 'beaten down' player joins the force of his oppressor/overlord, then there should be mechanisms set up where they must act as a vassal to their oppressor/overlord. They shouldn't be able to just backstab them, or only to a limited extent. How do the new ties that have been set up between the two players (by one player stomping on the other, and the other 'giving in') stay tied? Also, if a third player stomps on the player who already has a vassal, how does the power structure now work?

pelpo
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Hey there,

I like the idea of giving an eliminated player a chance to stay in the game. In my view, this also reflects reality best (funny to talk about reality in fantasy games). An occupied country is usually not totally wiped out.

Let's look to history. The Romans conquered huge empires. Once they occupied a region, they took the best men and made them soldiers for the roman army. Other men were made slaves. This sounds like the submission scenario. A new role for the defeated player can be to command a part of his army under high command of the invader. Another role can be to take care of weapons or food production, digging for ores, actually being in charge of the slaves.

France is another interesting example. In WWII, France was in 1940 overrun by the Germans.
A part of France remained, once occupied, under the control of a France governement, the so-called Vichy régime. This governement had an alliance with the germans. This could be a scenario: to give a defeated player full control over only a part of his overrun empire, working together with the invader.

Other parts of France were not only occupied by the Germans, they became part of Germany itself: the Elzas region that France had taken from Germany after WWI went back to Germany. This can be a nice combination with the scenario mentioned above: to give a player full control over a part of his overrun empire, the other part is not only occupied by the victorer, it becomes a part of his enlarged empire.

Another interesting thing about France is the resistance (la résistance). A player can indeed take the role of rebels, but the problem there is that he can be defeated again, then what? Rebels can off course work together with other players: the french resistance worked together with the british and the russians.

Last option can bee fleeing: just before France was overruled completely, a part of the governement and some troops managed to escape to England. General de Gaule teamed up with the british and americans to prepare D-day. The refugies scenario could also be interesting for a fantasy game.

Nestalawe
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Hey Pelpo!

Excellent suggestions, every scenario feels very viable in the form of game I imagine. It may even give players more of a choice - do they form a resistance, flee, or join their conquerors...

One aspect of the game design would be to build in the mechanics of how any of these would actually work during game play, without adding too much extra complexity. The 'Main' part of the game would have each player controlling their own empire - BUT, there could be a variety of scenarios, where one player may begin the game as 'The Empire' while the other players are rebels (Freedom In The Galaxy style...) of various other nations trying to regain their lands. Or a three player scenario may have one player controlling the largest empire (their own lands as well as some occupied lands), with the other players being a smaller empire allied with the remnants of the occupied lands. Winning conditions would vary amoung players.

Normally, players would not 'want' to be eliminated, but having the mechanics set up so that if they are eliminated (or put into very submissive positions) then they have options to keep in the game and playing an interesting, important role in the game. If this was done well, then it would mean players could invade and conquer to their hearts content without feeling 'bad' about wiping another player out.

I know that in many games of these types that I play, I tend to hold back if I am winning, as I want everyone to enjoy the game, and stay in the game. So in turn this lessens my enjoyment, as I don't perform the killing blow ;)

Johan
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Interesting but...

There is all in the goal. If the goal is to eliminate all other players, then will players be eliminated. The player that is eliminated can get other roles, but that has to be some meaning. Otherwise will the players be downgraded to filler (side kick) or a king makers.

Here are some games that have solved the problem in different ways:

Never rely eliminated: In a game like Civilization you can not be eliminated. If you are eliminated, then you only have to wait for the right disaster and you are then in the game again.

New tropes every turn: Britannia and History of the world is two games where you receive new units every turn. You can be totally eliminated from the game and will reappear the next round.

Not loose your last unit: In Republic of Rome, it is not possible to loose the last family (you can loose the fraction leader if tries to assassinate an opponent and fails but otherwise you can not loose him). You will always be in the game.

The next generation: In Junta you will always get another office even if the previous was assassinated or executed.

All these games have it in common that the battles and the units is just a way to receive the goal, not the goal itself.

// Johan

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Cheers to you too,
Well basically there should be some kind of a reward that the beaten player gets which would basically help him come back to play.
Once a player has achieved his target for a opressor or overlord
he could basically lookout for other back stabs along the board till he reaches a point where he can come back to play.

Pelpo ur insight on history was really interesting!

Nestalawe
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Quote:
There is all in the goal. If the goal is to eliminate all other players, then will players be eliminated. The player that is eliminated can get other roles, but that has to be some meaning. Otherwise will the players be downgraded to filler (side kick) or a king makers.

Totally agree with you there Johan. There is no point in providing another role for eliminated players when this role has no meaning. And I agree that eliminated players should not be 'downgraded' to sidekick/kingmakers, except for when it is in the eliminating players interest to force another player into that type of position. If I knew I could eliminate another player and force them to be submissive to me, then I would do my best to do just that. And yet the player in the eliminated role must still retain a playable position, and still Want to keep playing in that position.

I haven't had the chance to play any of the games you listed, but am familiar with their mechanics. I will go pop across to BGG and read up on them... :wink:

The type of game I have in mind may be different to the ones you listed, but they have systems that work, so i'll see if there is anything that I can draw from for my game...

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

I am also working on an epic empire game and have a similar desire to prevent players from being eliminated.

One simple way is to have each player begin with a home territory. This territory can be attacked by other players and can even be controlled by other players. But the player who makes that territory his home can always build troops there, no matter what. This way, he can always initiate battle to regain that territory.

To make this possible, I have a simple mechanic in place that gives players with fewer armies on the board more action points. Action points can then be used to build armies. Here's how it works. Each player has the same limited supply of armies and for every army in a player's supply (i.e., not on the board), that player receives one action point. It is basically a way to simulate troop maintenance without each player having to count his armies on the board and pay for those armies. With this system, a player who has had his armies wiped out will receive a lot more action points because all of his armies are now in his supply. This gives a beaten-down player the ability to come back and also makes it more difficult for players with all of their armies on the board to maintain their dominance.

Another simple way is what is done in Struggle of Empires. In that game, players simply cannot attack another player's home territory. That way, a player always has a territory and cannot be eliminated. Although that game is not really an epic empire game, it does offer a simple solution to player elimination.

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Id make it so it would be a better idea to force your opponent into a treaty instead of wiping them out. For example to have enough troops to be able to kill off another player youd have to leave yourself defensless, and you get benifits from controling another player that way (like taxes or something). That would also open up the realistic ability for a controled player to rebel and get free if they can manage to grow enough. The ideal stratagy would be to disable the opponents army in a way they have to rely on your army to protect themselves. Then you can be like the huns and say you will ransack your city again if you dont bribe us :wink:

Oh and its probably been said before but you could make it so troops arnt destroyed, there just pushed back like in Diplomacy.

Nestalawe
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Hey Imnop!

Yeah that makes sense, I am using similar mechanisms in another game I am working on - Each player has a limited number of Actions they may use, which need to be spread amoung the various forces they lead. So the more forces you have, the less things they will be able to do, which lets a player with smaller forces be able to do more things with them.

And in that game each player has their own 'base' and I am still deciding if other players should be able to attack them or not. For me it comes down to how 'realistic' it would be in the game world I have created. On one hand it would make sense for a player to want to attack another players base, so if I don't want that happening, I must create some game world justification for not letting it happen.

In your case, you could say that when a players home base is taken, partisans keep rising up to try and take back the capital, justifying the constant resurgances of armies. Do you have any 'justification' like this in mind?

The games I am working on are strongly themed, so I guess a big part of my design work is in balancing the mechanics with what I want to be feasible in the game world I have created, how detailed, complex and intricate I want it, balanced with 'in-game' realism, ease of play and simple mechanics... Ah game design joy ;)

Also, in your game, how much influence on the game will your player who has lost their home base? Will they realistically be able to still perform in the game or will they just keep getting beaten down? Will the player who beat them down feel satisfied that they have crushed his opponent or will they still play a sharp thorn in their side?

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

I know! If a player is eliminated, another player may let them create a small base/city/whatever inside their territory so theres more of a chance you can fight off whoever would be dominating the board.

Nestalawe
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Yeah I have seen some games that do similar to what you say Iraski, and could be done if it 'made sense' in the game play, otherwise it feels like running around the rules a bit.

I think a lot of it does come back to what type of game it is, what the Goals are as previously stated...

Getting lots of good ideas though, I will just have to try not to make the game too much of a Monster ;)

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Nestalawe

I definitely have in mind that the occupied home country has rebels rising up to take back the homeland. I guess the further justification is that each player is controlling a proud civilization that will not go down quietly. Personally, that justification works perfectly within a theme of a civ/empire building game. Plus, it makes it more fun for all of the players.

The game I'm currently working on started as a medieval war game with some elements of diplomacy. I like the mechanics so much I am expanding it into a civilization game. Basically I'm searching for the holy grail of games - complex civilization building with simple rules. Oh yes, I am ambitious!! :)

Really though, the playtesting I did with the medieval game showed that each player could expand and become dominant, only to find that it was difficult to maintain. This was really the result of having given each player a limited number of armies to defend an expansive empire. As this revealed itself, it got me thinking that this is exactly what civilizations do (they rise and fall, expand and contract), so I thought I would try to add some civ elements to what I had already created.

What I like about making it difficult to maintain dominance is that players will have to decide when they've expanded too far and when they should just shore up a more modest empire, as opposed to trying to hold on to it all as everything crumbles around them. It also allows a player who has been beaten down to rise up again, because dominant players will not always be dominant. In the limited playtesting that I did, a player who was severely beaten down was able to come back, but it certainly hurt his cause a lot. That player never did win though. More playtesting will need to be done before it is known whether a player can actually come all the way back and win.

I suppose that with some civ elements (like advancements), a player who is beaten down will only be able to focus on building up a military again and conquering new territories, at the expense of advancing. This could make it even harder for that player to win. This undertaking of mine is going to take a long, long time I think - there is going to have to be a lot of playtesting to get everything to balance out.

Brykovian
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Hey Nesty!

I've had to work through some of this same thing in one of my designs (link to journal entry), and I've taken a couple of approaches to try to minimize that happening ...

1> Added a "building" goal that gives as much (or, possibly, more) points in the end than winning new territory ... and forces the player, at times, to pick one or the other to focus on

2> Created a game-end condition that is independent of the goings-on in the game ... it's really just a timed ending -- number of rounds ... but the end should come at a pace that would be difficult for someone to wipe someone else out and still have a viable shot at winning

3> Finally, I threw in a simple catch-all safety net ... you can't attack a player's last province

Since you're another WOK vet, you might get a kick out of the design at that linked journal entry. ;-D

-Bryk

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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

I think a great way to handle it is to have new civilizations rise from the ashes of old ones. This is handled very well in the game Vinci -- http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/60 -- where you know going in that your civilization will only be able to control so much of Europe before it can no longer expand and begins to be swallowed up by other civilizations. You plan on running your civ to near its limits (the most interesting decision of the game is, just when to throw in the towel) and then renewing under the best possible terms.

It allows for the conquering of other player's civilizations without any elimination. I'd love to see the mechanism in another game.

-- Matthew

Nestalawe
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Quote:
It allows for the conquering of other player's civilizations without any elimination. I'd love to see the mechanism in another game.

Yeah I have seen these types of mechanims in a few games - I think it is also in History of the world.

I am thinking I will have to define the type of game I will be trying to make more though, as many of these suggestions are for civ type games, with a longer 'civilisation' timescale than I am intending.

Hmm, I think the best idea for me would be to write up a design brief, outlining my ideas for the type of game I am intending. The main thing though, is that it has the 'feel' and strong theme of a classic old hex and counter fantasy wargame (i.e. Divine Right - http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/23) but with much updated mechanics, less downtime, ease of play but with the same depth of theme, a lot of clashes, and no holding back when invading your enemies ;) Of course there is a lot more I want to fit in there, but that gives a brief idea of my ideal game ;)

FastLearner
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Note that in Vinci any given civilization lasts about 20 minutes, maybe 30, and most players have at least 3 civilizations in a 90 minute game. I suspect that it's much more along the lines you're considering than you might think.

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Sometimes new blood/fresh opinions and angles from left field are appreciated... so lets try this out for size...

I dont care for the idea of merging or joining for two reasons on both sides... if I lose, I dont wanna work with the person who decimated me, i have better things to do. If I am winning i actually dont want to absorb or have to collaborate with the loser, I mean, I am doing just fine decimating the planet without his help... ahem... (you get the idea)

Now, I noticed lots of references in this thread to wars and empires throughout actual earthen history, but I believe you mentioned your game was Fantasy... if it truly is... then I like this idea...

This doubles as a great thing to keep a losing eliminated player playing, and as a very cool catastrophic strategy busting timed event.

The first player eliminated initiates the RISE OF THE OGRES phase, or THE REVENGE OF THE DARK ELVES phase or the AWAKENING OF THE DRAGON phase...

The losing player is done, kaput, but immediately re-enters the game with an entirely new unrelated role, leading a group of fantasy beings/monsters who have been stirred from their slumber/habbitat by the thunderous war ravaging their once peaceful countryside.

A new race/troop type is introduced at a set (or surprise random) designation(s) - and may freely attack and wreak general havoc on any and all remaining players.

This event could turn the tide for an underdog emporer player or topple a dominate usurper...

This *event race/monster* neednt be all powerful, just enough to shake things up a bit, or perhaps get a foothold on some territory that has been ignored by a greedy tyrant, and pose a dangerous threat that must be dealt with by remaining players.

Nestalawe
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Hey Brahmulus!

I like your ideas alot! And yes, I am looking at a Fantasy based game, so something like this could work well...

Also, I would be looking at each player playing one of a variety of 'human' empires, but there would be 'neutral' empires (of both human and otehr races) beginning the game as well, which players may attack, coerce, ally, etc. So an eliminated player could initiate some form of uprising or other event as you suggest... Hmm yeah I reckon something could be worked out in that way...

There are still several things to consider -

1 - If I had the chance to eliminate a player, or put them into such a state that it would not be worth them continuing, would I finish them off, knowing they would just rise up somewhere else and most likely take revenge? I think that if the rewards were enough to balance this revenge aspect, then I would make the killing blow...

2 - If I was the player about to get eliminated, would I want to 'start again'?. Again, I think if the new role was fun, fit into the game, and had a real effect on the game, then it would be fine.

3 - What happens when a player would rather 'give up' his empire to play one of these new roles? You could end up with a very lacklustre effort by a player just so they could play in this other role, which wouldn't be as fun, or satisfying for the other players. Thinking about this though, it would come down to balancing things out. In a game where this form of player continuation after being eliminated happens, then there is always going to be a sense of 'losing' for the player, and I imagine it would depend on the type of person the player is to how keen they would be to play within these mechanics. Up to playtesting and balancing and trying things out I suppose ;)

I am not so keen on having players play multiple empires during the course of a game, the time scale of an entire game may be up to 10 years or so, rather than centuries, and I would like to have players get very attached to their empires (though this would lead to an eliminated player getting even more frustrated).

seo
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Nestalawe wrote:
What happens when a player would rather 'give up' his empire to play one of these new roles? You could end up with a very lacklustre effort by a player just so they could play in this other role, which wouldn't be as fun, or satisfying for the other players.

You can prevent this by having some sort of proportion between how hard one has fought before loosing and how strong will he be in his new role.

Let's say you add one point to a score for every attempt to conquer or for every turn you survive or whatever, and this score is used to define the strenght of your forces in the next role you play if you loose. That way, even if I want to be a dragon or whatever, I'll still have a good reason not to give up too soon.

Seo

Nestalawe
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Hey Seo!

True, it would be useful to be able to have some mechanic keeping track of VP's or some other strengths during the game, then, if a player does get eliminated for some reason, they would be able to reform themselves in a position of similar strength, though there should always be some penalty for having being eliminated, and the eliminator should get some benefit (though having wiped out a player and taken their lands/resources, this should be fairly straightforward...).

The tricky thing will still be getting that 'cut off' point right, and how you define a player as being eliminated.

Another aspect I am thinking about is how a players empire is defined and structured, as the design I have in mind is not purely territory based, but an empire may also consist of influences with other players/neutrals, various structures, i.e. churches of the empires faith, trade routes, spy groups etc... (Though all of my thoughts on this need a seperate forum thread ;)

But I imagine it would be rather hard to totally eliminate a player. Sure, you may take all of their lands, but they may still have leaders/heros wandering the land, the peasants may stay loyal to the empire, there may be churchs still spreading the empires faith, etc, etc. So I am still thinking there may be several different scenarios through which a player may stay in the game, be it starting again with a new force, or the focus of the players gameplay shifts from controlling an entire empire, to the remnants of an empire, its leaders and heroes, trying to regain their former glory...

seo
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The idea of not limiting the game to territories, and allowing fo a player to keep going on even without controlling any land sure sounds interestng. I guess you are also planing to include some way for this players to rebuild their empires after regrouping forces and regain control over his old lands (or some other).

Seo

Nestalawe
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Well I'm kindof exploring rebuilding as one option. Pelpo's earlier post re:looking at France's situation in WW2 offered other possibilities as well, i.e. setting up some form of resistance, joining with the agressors, or having other empires help out in some way.

My current theme/setting is human empires in a fantasy world, so the design of my game world can incorporate 'realities' that would sustain the believability of however I chose to define what an 'Empire' is. I would also imagine different empires having different strengths/weaknesses and how they expand and grow in power would be different. For example one empire may be very militaristic, but without much external trade, another empire may be very religious, gaining much power from their god/s and able to extend this influence across the land but unable to use much magic. Another empire may consist of a ruling council of mages, but have a weak military presence. Each of these different types of empires would have to be fought in different ways, strengths must be matched and weaknesses exploited, but I would like to see it possible that players can lose the majority of their empires half way through the game, but still enjoy the rest of the game as much as their enemies, I think that is getting closer to what I am trying to achieve!

Brykovian
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Nesty ...

Any way you can incorporate some type of "earned points" throughout the game that cannot be taken away and are incorporated into the end-of-game scoring? This way, you can make early progress (earn those points), and even if you get ganged-up on and beaten-down in the mid-game, perhaps you can hang on enough and score some "moral victories" (earning more points) along the way in order to win.

-Bryk

Nestalawe
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Hey Bryk!

Yep, I think there could definately a scoring method like that, cumulative throughout the game. Victory Point's could be scored in a variety of ways, also dependant on which empire you are playing, or players may choose their scoring conditions, or they may depend on the scenario they are playing (if any...). Maybe it would be possible for scoring conditions to change throughout the game, or dependant on certain events, i.e. if a player loses all their land, they may now be able to score points in different ways... Or maybe a player can gain the option to 'spend' an amount of VP's to change their scoring conditions to better suit their new situation...

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

There may be some over thinking going on, let me reign my concept back in and ground its impact on players a hair here...

Quote:
1 - If I had the chance to eliminate a player, or put them into such a state that it would not be worth them continuing, would I finish them off, knowing they would just rise up somewhere else and most likely take revenge?

You will have this exact dilemma with ANY *loser keeps playing* option you chose that doesnt involve them merging, its what you wanted.

This adds another level of strategy and decision making... you are about to finish off this weakling race, but there are rumors of an advancing Army of Hill Giants, and the sky is blackening... maybe you should back off a bit for now, etc.

Also gives the losing player a little protection buffer... theres a chance he'll stop pounding on me so not to activate the catastrophe phase, and I can get ahead a bit.

Quote:
If I was the player about to get eliminated, would I want to 'start again'?

Well I may or may not, but that wasnt your initial concern, your goal was *to create a way for eliminated players to keep going and not sit on the sidelines* - so you are making that decision for them before the game begins. ANY option you chose forces the player to *start again* in some form or another.

Quote:
What happens when a player would rather 'give up' his empire to play one of these new roles? You could end up with a very lacklustre effort by a player just so they could play in this other role, which wouldn't be as fun, or satisfying for the other players.

I personally think its a non issue, if your base game or initial empires are interesting diverse and fun enough, no one will set out with this intention. BUT even if they do its simply another strategy for everyone to consider and the *event monsters* will simply enter the game quicker... I'm not seeing the downside to this. "Bob always loses and comes in as The Lizardmen quite early" should be the same as "Steve always kicks butt at his empire building and wins"

Remember, the winning conditions will be set for the main human(oid) races, the losing player cant win, only wreak some havoc/bring you down.

Quote:
I am not so keen on having players play multiple empires during the course of a game, the time scale of an entire game may be up to 10 years or so, rather than centuries, and I would like to have players get very attached to their empires (though this would lead to an eliminated player getting even more frustrated).

by multiple empires I am assuming you mean losing and then merging into anothers players forces or rising from the ahses so to speak... Again everyone, if your base game is set up right, is going to try and rock their empire, but, someone will ALWAYS come up lagging behind and losing, no matter how you slice it, even with NO loser keep playing option, someone will have gotten into the game, into their empire and still... lose. You wanted the loser keep playing option. Again, the event monster race will not function like the standard base empire, more of an advancing roving army, etc... maybe units cant be replenished and a few other tidbits...

As far as all the *will it work* and *will players play hard* - I hope I shed some light on that... also bare in mind a tiny german (italian?) game called Gladiator where the first eliminated combatant activated the opening of a gate which released loser controlled wild animals into the arena. Flipping brilliant, and no one ever played any less hard, its just there when someone inevitably loses.

Nestalawe
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Hmm, yep, all good stuff...

I do like the idea of 'catastrophe events', which would definately work well in a fantasy setting. I can already picture how I could make this work in a variety of ways...

I think its time for me to do a write up and see if I can't start putting some of this into a design ;)

FastLearner
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Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

I suggest allowing players below a certain power level to collapse their own empire and start with the new whatever. If that power level is high enough, they can still be effective if they're not knocked below it, yet the moment they fall below, they're left with a meaningful decision about whether to try to push on or self-destruct.

A bigger issue, imo, is going to be kingmaking. If player A has effectively lost already, yet he gets to control hostile forces, he could well decide who's going to win the game, something that's no fun for the other players. Or even for the "winner," for that matter.

If a player who's collapsed can either (a) still score points, albeit at a slower rate, or (b) don't have a lot of flexibility in who they attack (very slow moving creatures, for example, so that realistically they can only attack near the random or pre-programmed place they appear).

-- Matthew

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

Quote:
If player A has effectively lost already, yet he gets to control hostile forces, he could well decide who's going to win the game, something that's no fun for the other players. Or even for the "winner," for that matter.

Well, I do see your point, but for some reason I still look at it as just another level of play...

When the game begins, the players control hostile forces and the better players are in fact deciding who will win, and as the other empire players demolish the less skilled/lucky empire players, they may not be having *fun*... but maybe they are.

I simply see it as another dimension... level two of the game... Unleashing The Undead and what have you...

But perhaps some sort of governer/control mechanic does need to be leveled on the newly appearing EVENT army... hmmmm...

Anonymous
Avoiding Elimination in Multiplayer Wargames

I may have something....

Perhaps the *awakened fantasy monster troops* are all territorial based...

When the first empire comes crashing down:

A band of Hill Giants descends from the mountians in the North
A clan of High Elves emerge from the forests of the East
An army of skeleton warriors crawl from their desert graves in the West
A giant three-headed Dragon screams out of the black sky in the South

The losing player controls all of the Event Monster Troops who all awaken from the battle on their homeland, these troops need to be balanced and not uber powerful, AND... they MUST stay in their own general area (territory or group of territorys.) This of course can easily and comfortably be explained away in a fantasy universe (The ancient beings powers derrive from their homelands)

I think that would solve it, so the first losing player must keep his new role Monster troops in their separate home/birth areas (or whatever) - therefore he is compelled to attack whoever happens to be in whatever area - and if no one is in that territory where he awakened, well, its suddenly gonna be a whole heck of a lot harder for the Empire Human player to take it for himself! ("say hello to my little friend... GROM the Mountian Giant Chieftan!")

You may see player alliances form to take the Monster Troops out of a territory, and then they can stab eachother in the back and claim it for themselves of course.

Again, I would have more fun activating and playing an entirely independant role and phase of the game than trying in some way to regroup or reform based on my previous life/empire/troops (and poor performance)...

Diggin' it...

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