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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

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Nestalawe
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Right, time to reincarnate my Pirate/Cannibals game. Been on the back burner for a while, till I could find a better combat system, where I could get rid of numbers.

So, I am looking at something like this -

The game is a card game, non-collectible, with only card, no dice, tokens or anything else.

Players have two types of cards, Items and Actions.

Items are permanent and sit in front of players for all to see. Actions are kept in players hands, secret.

In combat, each card will have one or more Attack and Defense symbols. Each of these will relate to a different aspect of an attack. Items will have maybe 1-2 symbols, actions will have 2-4 (or so, whatever).

The Symbols will relate to piratey type things and aspects, like Rusty, Spiky, Smelly, Crusty etc. The cards will show what symbols they Negate.

So, when attacking, a player will have one or more items, and one or more actions. They will play from 1-3 (depending on how Hungry they are...) action cards onto one of their items. They will then total all their different types of Attack and Defense symbols, to see who wins.

For Example -

Say there are five different types of symbols - A, B, C, D and E.

Player 1 has an Item with Attack:B and and two Action cards totalling Attack:CCDE Defense:AE

Player 2 has an Item with Defense:BC and two Action cards totalling Attack:BBDD Defense BCE

Now, symbols cancal eachother out Stone/Paper/Scissors style. Thus, A cancels B cancels C cancels D cancels E cancels A etc.

So, the example above would be -

Player 1's A Defense cancels one of Player 2's B Attacks.
Player 2's B Defense cancels one of Player 1's C Attacks, and his C Defense cancels Player 1's D Attack

So its now -

Player 1 - Attack:CE Defence:E
Player 2 - Attack:BDD Defense:E

Player 2 has three Attacks that get through, as opposed to Player 1's 2 Attacks, so Player 2 wins, and Player 1 must take a Wound.

Now, does that make sense? Is it lame? Will it take too long to work out? What is glaringly broken about this?

Also, I need to work out a way where more than two pirates can fight at a time, and there will always only be one winner.

Feedback o this kindof a system would be nice whilst I brainstorm a bit more...

Cher!

Nestalawe'

NetWolf
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

I would probably limit the icons to three types. Five different icons would lead to confusion and possibly drive off potential players.

Also I would make the icon types more concrete than "Spiky or Slimy". Personally I would use Cut, Thrust, and Pummel.

Cut beats Thrust (Essentially a Parry)
Thrust beats Pummel (Speedier)
Pummel beats Cut (Forceful)

These can be done in varying amounts and combinations much like you described, though they are more concrete.

As far as more than one pirate fighting at once, I would simply make it a "Last man standing" type game. If the Pirates deafeat the cannibals, well, "There's only room for ONE captain on THIS boat!!!"

VeritasGames
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Go to RPGNOW. Buy a copy of Greg Porter's "Infinite Armies". It's got a "build it yourself" card generator that uses a Rock-Paper-Scissors combat resolution system. It is customizable for other games and Greg is willing to license the software.

Infernal
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Quote:
Now, symbols cancal eachother out Stone/Paper/Scissors style. Thus, A cancels B cancels C cancels D cancels E cancels A etc.

Another way you could have the relationships between types is this:
A cancels B and C
B cancels C and D
C cancels D and E
D cancels E and A
E cancels A and B

This way each type canels out 2 other types and is canceled out by 2 types, giving the players more choice as to which cards they can use.

Quote:
I would probably limit the icons to three types. Five different icons would lead to confusion and possibly drive off potential players.

If yuo showed on the cards which icon that card cancels it would make it easier to learn and play.

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

VeritasGames wrote:
Go to RPGNOW. Buy a copy of Greg Porter's "Infinite Armies". It's got a "build it yourself" card generator that uses a Rock-Paper-Scissors combat resolution system. It is customizable for other games and Greg is willing to license the software.

Hmm, looks and sounds interesting, though maybe a bit more than I want... Fairly cheap though so may check it out...

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

NetWolf wrote:
I would probably limit the icons to three types. Five different icons would lead to confusion and possibly drive off potential players.

Also I would make the icon types more concrete than "Spiky or Slimy". Personally I would use Cut, Thrust, and Pummel.

I may begin with fewer icons to test things out, but I kinda feel it may be too limiting...

Yeah, I will have better icon types ;) I want to keep it rather light-hearted and humorous though. Thats thematic though, so can worry about that a bit later...

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Infernal wrote:

Another way you could have the relationships between types is this:
A cancels B and C
B cancels C and D
C cancels D and E
D cancels E and A
E cancels A and B

Hmm, that sounds quite good actually... Gives a lot more options during card play.

And yes, I would make it very clear on the cards themselves what cancels what...

Cheers for the good info guys!

I will rock out some ideas and start doing some testing, always the best way to see what works...

Infernal
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Quote:
Hmm, that sounds quite good actually... Gives a lot more options during card play.

or if you want to get realy complex :D :
You have 3 groups A, B, C. On average A beats B beats C beats A. So far prety standard.

In each group you have 3 sub types. 1,2,3 (for a grand total of 9). Each sub type specialises in beating one of the main type (A,B,C). 1 beats A, 2 beats B and 3 Beats C.

So in Group A you have A1,A2,A3. A1 beats Any of A. A2 Beast any of B A3 beats any of C.

If you have a marginal victory (A2 vs B1) where one side has a double dominance and the other has a single dominance and a single dominated type then the A2 player would suffer moderate damage but still beat the B1 player.

If there is a tie for a double beating (eg A3 vs C1) then lots of damage on both sides and the outcome is very uncertain (essentially a tie with a random decider).

If it is a double victory (A2 vs B3 or B2) then a total victory occures and little damage would be done to the A2 player.

All this is just summing the victories of the two types (ABC and 123) to give either a single success or double success or tie.

Example:
A victory in a type (ABC or 123) gives 1 point.

Round 1:
Adam plays an A2 card and Betty plays a C3 card. Adam gets no points (A beats B and a 2 beats B) where as Betty gets 1 point (C beats A but the 3 beats C).

Round 2:
Adam Plays a B3 Card and Betty Plays a C1 Card. Adam gets 2 points (B beats C 3 beats C) and Betty gets 0 points (C beats A and 1 beats A).

This is probably far to complex for this game, but I though I'd just throw it out in case it gave you ideas.

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Infernal wrote:
Quote:
Hmm, that sounds quite good actually... Gives a lot more options during card play.

or if you want to get realy complex :D ...

Hey thats pretty cool! May be a bit much for this game, or at least his permutation, but I will keep it in mind, as I would like to try it out...

I am going to begin with the 5 types, each type beats two other types system, but I imagine this going through several versions until I find what works best...

Cheers Infernal!

VeritasGames
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock is a rock-paper-scissors variant that does precisely what you are talking about (each symbol beats two and is beaten by two). With some tweaks to Greg Porter's code you could probably include the two extra symbols. Actually, though, I was plenty happy with the three symbols using Greg Porter's "Infinite Armies" mechanics. Cards have an attack value and a defense value which are strings of RPS symbols that you compare against each other to see who does how much damage to whom.

Infernal
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Quote:
Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock is a rock-paper-scissors variant that does precisely what you are talking about (each symbol beats two and is beaten by two).

Actually the S/P/R mechanic (intransient relationship) can be done with any odd number fairly easily (and can be done with even numbers). It take me about 5 to 10 minutes to come up with a design (so not long). I like the S/P/R mechanic as it make balancing a system much easier (it is almost self balancing).

Oh and here is another I though up while writing this post :D :
There are 5 symbols A, B, C, D and E.
A beats B and D
B beats C and D
C beats A and D
D beats E
E beats A, B and C

(it can help if you draw it out).

Julius
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Forget Rock-Paper-Scissors... Here's a 25 outcome variation:

Rock, Paper, Scissors, Gun, Dynamite, Nuke, Lightning, Devil, Dragon, Alien, Water, Bowl, Air, Moon, Sponge, Wolf, Cockroach, Tree, Man, Woman, Monkey, Snake, Axe, Fire, Sun.
http://www.umop.com/rps25.htm

Explaination of what beats what here:
http://www.umop.com/images/rps25_outcomes.jpg

Nando
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Infernal wrote:
Actually the S/P/R mechanic (intransient relationship)...

For anyone who is new to this concept and wanting to do further research, you may get farther with a more common name: non-transitive.

Other BGDF threads including this topic
here
here
here

Infernal
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Quote:
For anyone who is new to this concept and wanting to do further research, you may get farther with a more common name: non-transitive.

Doh! My bad. I got the name wrong. lol

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Lots of good stuff here, and thanks for all the links.

Infernal, I really like your -

Infernal wrote:

Oh and here is another I though up while writing this post :D :
There are 5 symbols A, B, C, D and E.
A beats B and D
B beats C and D
C beats A and D
D beats E
E beats A, B and C

- and would like to expand upon it. I really like the idea of each symbol being kinda 'unique' in that its not always 1 symbol beats 1 other symbol.

Now, what I am working with, is that each player will be able to play from 1-4 cards per combat (depending on how Hungry they are, and if they have at least one Item...). Each card will have one symbol on it.

I want to make it so that even if a player plays a max of four cards, then they won't be 'unbeatable', i.e. there will still be a chance they will lose.

The winner will be the player who can 'Beat' more symbols than any other player. i.e. If I had three cards with A, B, C, but you had one card with E, then you would win, as you beat my A - my B and C were useless.

If I was going to have six symbols A>B>C>D>E>F etc then it would work quite nicely, as even if a player played a max of 4 cards, there would be a chance that they would lose (i.e. if they had A, B, C, D and another player had E, then the first player would lose...).

So ok, thats what I have right now. I am a bit worried that if there are six different symbols, there will be a lot of cases where there will be no 'wins' and too many draws.

Also, I would like to be able to utilise a more interesting win/lose diagram such as Infernal's above. but then if I am working on the prinicpal that the winner is the player who makes the most 'hits', then that system may not work, i.e. an 'E' will be able to make 3 hits with one card...

Hope that makes sense!

Any thoughts on working this further? Any suggestions on good ways to work out probabilities on these sorts of things?

Nestalawe
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

One more note -

Players will have a hand of 'Action' cards, as well as one or more 'Item' cards face up in front of them. Each player will simultaneously place 1-3 Action cards face up onto one of their Item cards.

Both Action and Item cards will have a single symbol on them.

The outcome of the fight is determined by whoever beats the most symbols on the Action cards, not the Item cards (i.e. if I have a 'C' Item and you have a 'B' Action, it does not count as a 'Hit', but if I had a 'C' Action, then your 'B' Action would count as a Hit)

Thus, if a player has only one Item, enemy players will have at least some idea of a card they should not play (i.e. if I have an 'A' Item, you would not want to play a 'B' Action, and it means I would be safer in playing a 'C' Action etc...). But if I had more than one Item, enemy players will not know which Item I will 'Use' (play my Action cards onto).

FastLearner
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

We've discussed Rock-Paper-Scissors and Rock-Paper-Scissors-Spock-Lizard before, but never the amazing RPS 25. That's right, 25 possible hand gestures (or cards, eh?). Be sure to check out the outcomes page, where you get such great stuff as "Bowl shapes craft of Alien" and "Cockroach sleeps in fur of Wolf."

-- Matthew

Shellhead
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Nestalawe wrote:
One more note -

Players will have a hand of 'Action' cards, as well as one or more 'Item' cards face up in front of them. Each player will simultaneously place 1-3 Action cards face up onto one of their Item cards.

Both Action and Item cards will have a single symbol on them.

The outcome of the fight is determined by whoever beats the most symbols on the Action cards, not the Item cards (i.e. if I have a 'C' Item and you have a 'B' Action, it does not count as a 'Hit', but if I had a 'C' Action, then your 'B' Action would count as a Hit)

Thus, if a player has only one Item, enemy players will have at least some idea of a card they should not play (i.e. if I have an 'A' Item, you would not want to play a 'B' Action, and it means I would be safer in playing a 'C' Action etc...). But if I had more than one Item, enemy players will not know which Item I will 'Use' (play my Action cards onto).

Yes, I too like the combat system in Fury of Dracula.

gilbertgea
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

I like a simple rock-scissors-paper system, but if you want a little more complexity, you could try using modified poker-style hands. For instance, three of a kind of one type of cards beats two pair of two other types.

I'd try to keep things simple. The more complex a game is, the slower it will probably become.

Infernal
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

I used a 3 S/P/R patern for a game. However I used a system where you needed 2 of the winner to remove 1 of the looser. It also had a rule that if 2 or more of the loser was included then it took 3 of the winner to remove the 1.

For example:
If you had 1 Scissors, then I would need to have 2 Rock to beat you. No matter how much Paper I had I still could not win.

If you had 2 or more Scissors (say 6), then I would still only need 3 rock to beat you.

This was a hex tile placing game and used proximity to determine what threatened what and which tiles were removed. But it could apply to the number of cards put out.

So if Player 1 put out 1 Rock card and 2 Scissors cards. Player 2 might only need to place 2 Paper cards to eliminate Player 1's Rock.

To eliminate imposable placements I made all tiles, regardless of the owner, able to be used to remove a tile. So in the above example, ig you include this rule, Player 1 could not place the 2 Scissors out, without looseing his Rock card (but if he played 2 scissors tand 2 rock this would be ok, but player 2 would only need 1 Rock to elimiente the scissors - 3 is needed).

VeritasGames
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Greg Porter's Infinite Armies game has a series of RPS symbols, and you compare cards and they immediately play out a sequence of RPS rounds in a row. Very clever. Up for an Origins Vanguard award.

gilbertgea
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

Speaking of cards...

...I forget if someone here told me where to find it, but here is a site where you can download a MtG-style card maker and use it for your own purposes:

http://mtglair.de/editor.html

At the very least, you can use it to create and playtest your own cards.

FastLearner
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Card Combat System Based on Stone/Paper/Scissors

I dreamed last night of an RPS 25 game and got up and wrote about it. I was very pleased to discover this morning that it's a very valid and pretty cool idea for a game. Whaddya know?

-- Matthew

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