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When a mechanic is needed, but to confusing at first

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X3M
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Have you ever had the situation.
That you had to add a mechanic. So that the game will work.
Yet yourself, you felt that it should not be added?
Because it will be way to confusing at first.

What would be the best course of action?

ElKobold
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X3M wrote:Have you ever had

X3M wrote:
Have you ever had the situation.
That you had to add a mechanic. So that the game will work.
Yet yourself, you felt that it should not be added?

What would be the best course of action?

Find a different one to serve your purpose.

Also, what's the reason for you to not wanting it there? Is it negatively impacting the experience?

X3M
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Yes, it seems it does negatively impact the game.

To keep things fair, logical and balanced:
This mechanic closely resembles another one.
It is a perfect fit in the game.

- It is not rare, but not common either. Compared to its big brother, about 1 to 10.
- The slight difference might cause a lot of confusing moments for beginning players. Mistakes are bound to happen.
- This mechanic, while being almost the same. Needs a completely different explanation in the rules. I rather not expand my rules any more.
- Also, it feels that the main mechanic by now, is over used in the same game. I already cut it down several times. I rather keep cutting it instead of letting it creep back in.
- The game also slows down if it is added. Down time goes up. But the game itself adds even more time. Down time was supposed to go down, the overal time would remain the same.

I need to ponder to replace it with something clever.

***

I think I will leave it out of the game.
But that will mean that there is an imbalance, speeding the game up.

questccg
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I tried to understand...

But you didn't explain the "mechanic" in question?!?!

What is the "mechanic" that is used to balance your game? You talk about a "mysterious" mechanic, it's odds, that it slows down the game - but never explain what it is?!

Is it a dice roll, drawing a card, skipping a turn, etc. What exactly is this "mechanic" you are talking about? How it affects the game well you did explain: "Balances the game, occurs less frequently, slows down the overall game."

All that I understand. My question remains: "What is the 'mechanic' in question???" I don't like working back-wards. I prefer to go forwards and understand what it is, then it's positive impact and followed by it's negative impact, etc.

You don't have to respond, if you don't want to. I just feel like KEY information is being excluded which could or could not help me determine what your options might be...

Cheers!

X3M
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The intention of my first

The intention of my first post was one of a "general kind of question". First seeking advice in general.

I'll fill you in on the details. (But out of time)

ElKobold
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X3M wrote: - The slight

X3M wrote:

- The slight difference might cause a lot of confusing moments for beginning players. Mistakes are bound to happen.
- This mechanic, while being almost the same. Needs a completely different explanation in the rules. I rather not expand my rules any more.
- Also, it feels that the main mechanic by now, is over used in the same game. I already cut it down several times. I rather keep cutting it instead of letting it creep back in.
- The game also slows down if it is added. Down time goes up. But the game itself adds even more time. Down time was supposed to go down, the overal time would remain the same.

I need to ponder to replace it with something clever.

I think I will leave it out of the game.

Sounds to me like you've got the answer already.
Personally, I`m always for "less is more" approach in design.

questccg
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Needs to be addressed

X3M wrote:
The intention of my first post was one of a "general kind of question". First seeking advice in general.

My "general" answer would be: how "imbalanced" is the game and how frequently is there are need to "balance" it? If like you say it occurs frequently enough to REQUIRE "balancing" but doesn't occur too many times, then in my mind, you need to address the "balance" issue.

And the reason I say this, is because it seems (according to the OP) that it occurs sufficiently enough times, that it is not an exceptional or rare case, it may be infrequent and not common, but may occur in say more than 10% of the time. 10% is frequent enough but not common. 1% is the exception case - which this problem is not the exception... 40-50% of time would be common.

X3M wrote:
I'll fill you in on the details. (But out of time)

Ok only if you want to and have the time... I'm just curious because I like to understand what is the real nature of the problem.

X3M
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As always, thank you for

As always, thank you for helping me out!
Even if it is just for a freeking hobby :D

What I meant with, "that it happens more often than I like". Is that I start to see a patron in the road that I walk. It isn't the same issue. Sometimes not even the same game. It is a different issue each time. Being resolved (or not) in the same way.
I think I need to change my way of work. Or is this the way to work?

Eventually, the issue is either solved by a lot of time spending on thinking. Or discarded.

***

Ok, here it goes. I try to keep it short and simple. But there has been a study to begin with.

***

The main goal is to bring balance between the little and the big guys.

This time in the form of adjusting statistics of the units, during the game. The mechanic is through Event cards.

The principal follows "payment". That follows this line:
http://anydice.com/program/d55a
Tick the "at least" box to see what I mean.

Cheap units have a higher chance in being adjusted. So the little guys get a gain much faster here. Not just in a balanced way. But they are prefered.

Of course, negative effects are allowed as well. But that is practically a waste on the cheaper units. And more so, only half in effect.

---

Once payment is decided. The adjustment is applied.

There are several possible adjustments. Each has its own card:
- More health, absolute
5, 10, 15 etc.
- Less health, absolute
5, 2, 0.
- More damage through more bullets, unique adjustment, absolute
2, 4, 6 etc.
- Less damage through less bullets, unique adjustment, absolute
2, 1, 0.
- More range, absolute
2, 3, 4 etc.
- Less range, absolute
2, 1, 0.
- More speed, absolute
2, 3, 4 etc.
- Less speed, absolute
2, 1, 0.
- More accuracy, unique adjustment, absolute, random factor
3, 6, 6+3 etc.
- Less accuracy, unique adjustment, absolute, random factor
3, 1, 0.
- More durability by penalty, unique adjustment, random factor
0, 1, 2, 3 etc.
- Less durability by penalty, unique adjustment, random factor
0, 1, 2, 3 etc.

+Unique adjustment is an adjustment that can not be done through XP spending.
+Absolute is a linear adjustment. Can't get lower then 0.
+Random factor is depending on a dice roll.

As you can see, each card either adjust the body or the weapon. For each body adjustment, there is a weapon adjustment.
And for each positive card, there is a negative card. (quantum mechanics principle ftw)

The issue is regarding the last 2 cards.

More durability
All players are well known by the penalty mechanic.
Roll 5/6th, and the projectile misses.
In this case, the projectile gets this roll at the moment that damage is already done. Or else we don't know if remaining damage stays put, or goes to the next unit.
Small issue, but something that needs to be explained in the manual.
Just one more line in the manual.

Less durability
This card will remove the penalty that is placed by the other card.
But can also go into the "negative", unlike all the other cards that stop at 0.
When a projectile misses. The attacking player may roll an "undo".

Undoing a miss works in the same way. But this time, 1/6th of a chance that the projectile doesn't miss.
While the card will neutralise the penalty card. Or any other penalty that the game contains.

It can't neutralise accuracy rolls. These are cause by statistics on weapons or terrain.
Of course I could allow players to calculate e.g. 3/6th back to 4 penalty rolls. But I want to let players to focus on the game, not the math.

That said, the concequence is that for each accuracy roll that misses. The player rolls the "undo".

And this "undo" may only be applied on units that have this "undo".

The easiest way to solve the complexity would be, letting players roll the damage die first.
That means that one bullet might be 4 damage. And each damage would go through all the above rules. And each projectile has to be dealth with seperately any way.

This is an entire page? Have not written it though.

***

It is just to much work by that very last card.
A page for one card?

Mathematically, it is balanced. It is fair.
It also balances the game.
But, as you can see, the game slowwwwws down.

Discarding the "less durability by penalty":
Could mean, discarding the "more durability by penalty".

This would mean that the body has 2 less adjustments. While weaponry adresses all adjustments.

Discarding both cards is a decrease in down time and a speed up of the game. Balance is less and less fair.

Discarding only the "less" card only is possible. But this would slow down the game. However, the cheaper units will gain more durability. Which will balance the game nonetheless. Although, not fair.

***

If you read through all of that; WOW.

It sounds good on paper. But I don't want the mechanic.

Fri
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Combine attack

Could you change that the attacking unit just rolls two dice on the attack? One would dice would be the die as you have it now and the other would be the undo dice. The dice could be different colours. The attacker scores a hit if either dice is a hit. Maybe the get a bonus if both dice are hits?

X3M
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Temporary twin dice? Maybe tripplets. Sorry for tldr

I don't know. I could consider it. But maybe it would make things complex in another way.
I'll try to come up with something.
But now that you mention it. I do have another problem that lies in the end of each rolling sequence.

FOR THAT, I could use the twin dice system.

I am looking at the roots of the problem right now.
And even though, it is rare to happen. When it happens, the problems are noticeable a lot.

TLDR?
Different targets. That is my problem.

***

A dice pool does what?:
1.First, all projectiles are rolled. Based on any accuracy that only applies to the weapon. Dice are removed that miss.
2.Then, all projectiles are turned into damage dice. Dice are added.
3.Last, these damage dice will need to see if they can hit the target, by the statistics of the target.

Point 2 is placed before point 3. Because point 2 is a strike through effect. 6 damage and 5 health? 1 damage goes to a next target.
Each target gets its own pool.
And gets more pools assigned when it didn't die yet.
Before moving to the next target.

***

What splits up the pool into smaller pools? Point 3, now worked out.

a.
A rare chance that "penalty rolls due to movement", forces the player to already look at 1 die at a time. If not; this is the last time to roll the entire pool.

b.
The second, much more common roll. That forces players. Is that of the agility/deflection of units.
With 6, this will not happen. But 5 or less. Each damage die, will have to be rolled. Until the targets with the same agility/deflection dies.

c.
And last, the attribute effects.
These work exactly the same as the agility/deflection roll. But are very rare.
Each pool does point a, then b, then c. Before the next pool is rolled.

***

How does it look like, when rolling per target?

Example:
The targets are taking cover.
1st has an agility of 4
2nd has an durability of 5
3rd has an agility of 6
All have 5 health

You attack, and you have 20 damage dice.

Rolling a 4 or less means that a damage die, remains a damage.
But rolling all, doesn't show in which order they are rolled.

We need to focus per target.

The target has 5 health. This means that we need to check 5 damage.
We roll 5 dice. 3 of them have 4 or less. The other 2 are discards.
We need 2 more dice. 1 of them has 4 or less. The other 1 is a discard.
We need 1 more dice. This time it is 4 or less.

Out of 20 dice. We used 8 dice. 12 remain for the next target.

We repeat the same recipe. And eventually we get to the conclusion of the battle.

If all targets had an agility of 4. Then all dice could be rolled at once.
If the first and third target had agility of 4. And the middle had 6. Then we had no choice but to consider each target individual.

***

With that same 20 damage dice. When using twins or triplets. Each set would be worth only 1 damage. A pool of 5, would be reduced to 5 different pools.
Although, having 20 damage dice. Would mean 20 pools, rolled. To keep things ordered. Each damage die is taken from the box. And then rolled as a pool.
Counting hits.

***

TLDR?
Different targets. That is my problem.

X3M
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A new ANSWER

Removing strike through helps a lot.

The damage multiplier can simply be placed at the back.
I can still allow players to sort the damages against targets that are being shot at the same time.

But striking a next target with the same projectile is out of the window.
Explosive weapons still have multiple projectiles.
Small weapons suffer less likely from this. So a big middle finger to the big cannons. Somehow it feels unfair and fair at the same time. But it certainly adds balance too.

This afternoon, I can look at the other effects that need sorting. After all, each projectile will still hit a target.

Personal note:
I need a personal document of how and when the accuracies are rolled.

Fri
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Combine attack

I can see how my suggestion does not really help your problem. I thought that the problem that you needed help with was speed up the process with the undo rolls. IMO it might be the solution might still be useful for this so I will explain it some more. Basically if a unit had some vulnerability like less durability then attacker would roll an extra die when attacking. This would replace the undo die. Since it replaces the undo roll it would have the same stats for a hit as the undo roll. I would just leave a die on top the stack of unit cards and modifier cards but I am forgetful. This way the attacker would only have to roll for hits once and roll for damage once. I'm glad that you have solved the problem with multiple targets because I do not have a solution for that.

X3M
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Well, I was still troubled

Well, I was still troubled with the undo roll.

But adding damage is actually the way to go here, to be honest. You are not far of. I like the fact that someone is thinking alike.

It would mean, really only x2 for the damage roll. Not 2 projectiles.

I think that each damage roll would be 2 dice. And the level after that would be 3 etc.

I did not have time yet to work it out yet.
Maybe this is the one way to go.

However, I don't want immortal units, when they get the opposite.

The opposite is the penalty.

Seeing as how the other cards add about 100% the first time around. These 2 should get it as well.
The penalty roll would be 4 levels or 625/1296.
Or just the one time 3/6th roll. Yeah, I go with that.

X3M
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I think

I am done for now. Although, I need some better wording.
At least I changed the topic's title.

Increase Toughness wrote:
Select targets.
Add 2 independent penalty.
Roll for duration.

Decrease Toughness wrote:
Select targets.
Add the targets opponent’s initial Damage dice to their current amount of Damage dice.
Roll for duration.

To confusing with the second card?
"Add the targets opponent’s initial Damage dice to their current amount of Damage dice."
This is how the card should work:
If any opponent attacks the selected unit, the opponent will do more damage. And the damage can have a level.

The symbols on the pieces are:
2T, 4T, 6T, etc.
Or we use 2P, 4P, 6P, etc.
But that might be confusing with the penalties caused by other cards or effects. And in those cases, certain projectile velocities will adjust them. At first glance, it would be understandable to stick with the T. But as strange as it sounds. I want to use 2P, 4P 6P, etc.

Decrease toughness will have to be different than all the other cards.
Maybe -1T, -2T, -3T etc.
D is reserved for the re roll.

larienna
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I had a similar issue in

I had a similar issue in fallen kindoms where I wanted to have an alternate way of winning besides battles. The theme was to use influence and eventually intimidation to win.

I tried many mechanics, cards in hands played as face off. Cubes in an outside pools, etc. I probably listed all of them on my web site, I can always find it and post the page. Anyways, all those mechanics seemed too complex and broke up the pacing of the game.

In the end, the intimidation consisted making each player have an intimidation level, and during battles, if your intimidation was higher than you opponent, some troops retreated. This ways it's compare a number, move a token. Simple and efficient. Not as deep as previous mechanism, but it kept the game flowwing.

X3M
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larienna wrote:I tried many

larienna wrote:
I tried many mechanics, cards in hands played as face off. Cubes in an outside pools, etc. I probably listed all of them on my web site, I can always find it and post the page. Anyways, all those mechanics seemed too complex and broke up the pacing of the game.

I got everything noted down once on paper. And I kept every trialled mechanic digital. This way, I did find some solutions too for other issue's!
Did you also record concequences when mechanics are combined. Or slightly altered?

larienna wrote:

In the end, the intimidation consisted making each player have an intimidation level, and during battles, if your intimidation was higher than you opponent, some troops retreated. This ways it's compare a number, move a token. Simple and efficient. Not as deep as previous mechanism, but it kept the game flowwing.

Cutting down a mechanic, until it is 1 roll or a simple comparisson seems to work best these days.

The main core of the game has a simple comparison mechanic. If it was never placed in the core. The game would have died 5 years ago.

PS. Following your Starcraft game. How is that one going?

larienna
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?Starcraft!? I traded the

?Starcraft!?

I traded the board game away, but the variant remained unupdated.

Right now I am currently wounded, I have classes to follow and I am on drugs (^_^), so my production capacity is comparable to a snail. I can hardly even play video and board games.

Else, the "new trend" project is to make a command line based game engine (eventually upgradable with graphics later) to make video game or digital board games, prototypes or AI.

But I'll have to wait after christmas to start.

X3M
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You are... currently wounded?

You are... currently wounded? I hope it is notching bad.
Get well soon!

Well, I was curious to your Starcraft for one reason. Starcraft can be seen in my game as well. And I had to work to get this game to meet C&C. Because the attributes that I implemented are also due to that game. Well, not small etc. But the idea of attributes is what counts. Originally, I had only armor value's.

And in fact, attributes where one of the mechanics that I didn't want. But needed o'so badly to make the game work. Eventually, I yielded.
I have found a nice path between Starcraft (attributes) and C&C (armor values). For balanced production and healing. And specific weaponry can ONLY work with attributes.

As said before, it is a thing lately for me to add in things that I personally don't like or find complicated behind the scenes. But so far, it slightly confuses my loyal play group too.

Maybe I can learn a thing or two from your work. Idea's could also push me in a better direction with mechanics that I am using myself. Mechanics that can't be found in the old games.

larienna
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Then maybe you are talking

Then maybe you are talking about "Ratscraft". I have an old website I have not updated in ages, not much content on it:

http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/games/RatsCraft/index.php?n=Main.Rules

From what I remember I used value comparison between attack and defense.

The latest written rules I have date from February 2013. If you PM me your e-mail, I could exceptionally send you the file by e-mail and the comments on a mini playtest I made.

I remember that later I intended to replace combat cards with real unit tokens on the board to make it more interesting. The number of units would have been very limited which could have made the strategy better, but the combat resolution is possibly the same and this is the part you are interested in.

Else have you checked "project Ares", there is a not of resemblance with starcraft.

X3M
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I see.

You shuffled the letters.
Also the same font.
Nice touch.

Sure, I will send you a PM.

It stumbled on this one:
http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/index.php?n=Variants.Variants-starcraft-I...
And I took a look at this:
http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/uploads/Mainsite/Variants/Variants-starcr...

I got something similar. But different al together. I don't know if those are from the Original game.
It is weird how players don't understand the list at all. And suddenly know each unit statistic by memory. Did you experience that too?
Or am I dealing with a rare breed of people over here?

They play a ridiculous ammount of D&D when I am not around.

larienna
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That was my starcraft solo

That was my starcraft solo variant. So it's basically an AI script + a rule adaptation to make the game playable solo. But since I traded the game for Starwars Rebellion, I cannot update the rules of the variant anymore. There were a few details to modify with maybe making a graph of the AI script for better clarity.

X3M
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Sudden big impact.

My Math senses went tingling. And in a good way too!

We did some play testing this morning.

Putting the damage roll, all the way in the back. And also saying that damage is no longer distributed amongst targets. This had a big impact on the game.

Funny how things go. You run into one problem. Trying to solve it. Change some rules for more clarity. And whop!!! The game changes in a good way in a totaly different area.

Overkill as a balance tool was Always in the plans. But now, I have this on the whole spectrum.
Dare I say I finally reached: infantry>>>tanks?

Maybe I can get rid of the silly bonus rule regarding damage? Probably not. Since the bazooka infantry would be still have the same efficiency. They only have their small health like the other infantry. But the tank has small health too, compared to bazooka.

Need to check my excel file on the true durability of 1 unit.

X3M
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Overkill in the long run (I found my excel file)

I did the math.

22,0% on normal weapons, or 82% efficiency.
24,5% on bonus weapons, or 80% efficiency (on a 150% weapon).

When pitting a normal tier 6 unit against 6 tier 1 units. The overkill percentage is roughly 1/36th on the tier 1 units. That means that when we compare damage efficiency. The tier 1 units as group are 19,8% more efficient.

The original efficiency that this pitting had was 92,5% versus 107,5%.
I am not sure if I calculated that right, but I think I may multiply the basic tier 1 efficiency by 1,2.
This results in roughly 110,9% versus 89,1%.

O my, did it really just go 180 degrees in imbalance?

It really only applies to very generic 1 against all situations.

Not going to say anything to the players.
Just letting them wonder why it feels suddenly so much more "balanced".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7hsVa18yfA

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