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Need help with Skill acquisition system for my dark fantasy game...

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devaloki
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Hi again yall,

So I've been working on my game more and have run into a wall with regard to how the system should work for players acquiring skills.

See my other threads to know more about it. But in brief, the game is a dark fantasy rpg inspired one where players each control their own character. There is a safe central area they move out from and there are 5 bosses that must be defeated at the end of each region in order to win.

Gameplay is divided into two segments in game: exploration on the "Overworld" (the board and it's locations) and the second being combat handled in a turn based system similar to rpgs (but more simplified).

Each player starts the game with a Specialization/"class". It is similar to Demon's Souls where you have a class to start but it's more about the origin of your character and determines what gear and stats you start with rather than a strict hard limit as far as what you can do in game.

The 5 bosses in game (Archons) correspond to 5 Alignments in the game. Each player has a character card that shows their stats. They also have cards for their equipment and skills in front of them. It is similar to a mix between Descent Journeys into the Dark and Dragon's Crown with regard to abilities (skills) they have in front of them.

Players track how strongly aligned they are with each Alignment in game because that affects how certain skill cards work for them. I am aiming to have about 5 or 6 different types of cards in game for players, but only a certain amount of the types are skill cards. Concerning the types of skill card types players can choose here are some:

- Sorceries
- Miracles (Sorceries and Miracles are two separate spell types, there may be a third type as well)
- Melee abilities
- Passive buffs/enhancements
- Noncombat abilities
- Common skills (a mix of all types, these can be purchased at the central safe area and are always available cards comparable to common skills in Dragon's Crown for ps3 or to Ascension card game)

Each skill card is divided into two sections: the top half is the basic ability/buff the card gives, the bottom half is the enhanced version of the card that can be used provided that your Alignment is high enough for that card (each individual card corresponds to an Alignment). Some Alignments have more of certain types of card types more so than others but they have at least a few in each type (similar to how, for example, Blue in Magic the Gathering has more sorceries and instants than it does Creature cards, but it still has all types). For example, here's an example of a Fireball spell:

Basic: 4 points fire damage
Enchanced: 7 points fire damage (Enchanced usable if level 3 in Chaos Alignment)

Also, the reason why players have Specializations as (besides determining starting gear/stats) is because I picture each card costing a certain amount of "Demonic Essence" (DE for short) to acquire; each card has two associated costs such as "Fireball: Sorcery: 300/500 DE" where the cheaper cost on the left is how much it costs if you have a Specialization in Sorcery, but any character could acquire it for the more expensive cost. Skills/Spells will also have stat requirements necessary to use them.

The block that I've run into though concerning the game is exactly how the cards should be presented on board and how players acquire them.
I picture the common skills (they have no enhanced Alignment section) available to look through and purchase at all times in the center. Each type of skill card has its own corresponding deck regardless of Alignment (so there should be a deck each for melee abilities, buffs, sorceries, etc...) that is shuffled during setup to form its deck. Players can acquire skills through defeating enemies as well as through exploring locations on the Overworld as well as by purchasing them at different locations.

So does anyone have any idea on how they should be presented though? One idea I was thinking of was having each deck display a few cards (depending upon the number of players) into a store type area (similar to Dominion) and when a player defeats an enemy or at the beginning of each round a certain number of cards are added from each deck into face up piles in the store area. I definitely want there to be that aspect of the game where DE cost for cards is dependent upon Specialization.

I'm worried about running into a situation in the game, for example, where the player kills a monster and is given ability to get a spell card but then end up not having enough DE to get any of the ones that are presented (so say there is a store of cards presented Dominion style and when you kill a monster you put two more cards into the corresponding faceup pile from the deck of spell cards and then you can choose to purchase one from it; or perhaps if they can't afford any of them they can opt to acquire a random one instead?).

Any ideas/help on how to handle this would be appreciated and sorry for my long winded post I have a hard time putting my thoughts/question into concise form sometimes lol

btronk
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Hi Devaloki, The choice to be

Hi Devaloki,

The choice to be able to buy spell cards through killing monsters might be good enough. I am assuming there are other reasons to kill monsters as well, and it also happens to be the opportunity to buy spells is a reward. I imagine also that you may not want people gaining new abilities every time a monster is defeated. I would say if that doesn't please you, then if a player kills a monster and gets to look at spells, he can choose not to take a spell and just gain 100 DE.

devaloki
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Thanks btronk.The reason to

Thanks btronk.
The reason to kill enemies in the game is so that the players can either 1. level up their stats or 2. acquire new skills.
"I imagine also that you may not want people gaining new abilities every time a monster is defeated. "
Definitely not. They all will reward the player though with some DE upon their defeat each time though. Some will drop items or allow player to immediately acquire a skill (with some enemies it will be a random drop %of doing so).

" I would say if that doesn't please you, then if a player kills a monster and gets to look at spells, he can choose not to take a spell and just gain 100 DE."
I really like that idea you brought up of allowing them to choose not to take the skill (or if they can't) then alternatively they could just get some extra DE. One of the character stats in the game will allow them to sift through the decks when they acquire skills.

So using your idea, perhaps the skills could each have their own deck and some are face up in a pile from which you can purchase (the basic skill deck is always face up). New ones are put into the faceup piles at start of each round and also when players defeat enemies but choose not to keep (or buy if the enemies reward doesn't just give them the card) the card. Perhaps the faceup piles could have a limit on how many can be faceup at one time...
So the skill cards would be faceup in their own "offers"...although I'm not sure whether to do it similar to Dominion, Ascension, or Mage knight, or perhaps thre are other models I'm missing?

Maybe it'd be a better idea to have the skill cards shuffled by Alignment rather grouped together by type?

devaloki
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Anyone have any ideas on how

Anyone have any ideas on how the skill cards can be displayed/handled?

devaloki
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Like, what I mean is is there

Like, what I mean is is there a way I can have the skills separated into different decks and how they are displayed/acquired in different ways whilst also emphasizing the main ideas in my game of 1. acquiring DE and/or skills through killing enemies and 2. that there are different player Specializations in the game ? Any ideas would be appreciated

devaloki
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Though thinking about though,

Though thinking about though, perhaps a better way to handle it would be to have the common skills viewable/purchasable whilst the regular ones are only obtainable randomly from the decks?

schattentanz
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Actually ...

... It's simple:
We kill the Batman.

No, wait.
Let me start over.

It's simple. It really is. Concept-wise, at least.
Skills are presented on cards.
For each specialization there is a certain number of skillcards available and all specializations use the same number of skills.
As preparation for the game, each specialization's skill deck is evenly divided into two decks:
The target deck and the random deck.
The target deck remains separate from all other decks, while all the random decks are shuffled into one deck.

Whenever a Player kills a monster, he draws a certain number from "his" target deck (the deck supporting his specialization) as well as a certain (maybe smaller number) from the random deck and puts those cards into the store.
Also for defeating the monster he gets a certain amount of store credit that is different from your DE.
As soon as the store offers more than X cards, the oldest cards are discarded.
The player may now opt to buy one of the skill cards in the store. Or he may opt to keep the store credit to buy a more powerful skill later.

That would be my Approach..

Kind regards,
Kai

devaloki
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Thanks for the ideas

Thanks for the ideas schattentanz.

I like them a lot overall.

"Also for defeating the monster he gets a certain amount of store credit that is different from your DE."
Originally I intended for there to be only one currency in game, DE, but perhaps that will change.

"For each specialization there is a certain number of skillcards available and all specializations use the same number of skills."

I get what you're saying here and that is a system I may end up doing though I am also looking into other ways of doing things. I have to clarify the differences between cards though:

Skill cards consist of abilities you can do, spells you can cast, or ocassionally buffs to your character, etc. Specializations are character specific and determine which TYPE of skill cards (i.e. Specializations does not refer to TYPE of skill cards technically speaking although I suppose it could be used interchangeably with it) your character can obtain easier and will generally be going after obtaining in the game. The strength of some skill cards is dependent sometimes on your stats (attributes such as strength, willpower, etc) and/or how strongly aligned you are with one of the Alignments in the games. "Common" skills are skills that have no Alignment to them (and thus have enhanced effect). Some Alignments have more TYPES of skill than other types (such as in Magic the Gathering where Blue has more instants/sorceries than creature cards but Green on the other hand has more creature cards).
There can be more than one player in game who has the same specialization.
Though I could have it so that the "target deck" you mentioned could be the "common" cards that have no Alignment for that specialization.
But instead of having random deck for each specialization, perhaps it'd be better to mix together ALL cards, regardless of specialization? Because as I mentioned at beginning of this thread, you do have a specialization in the game, but you can potentially use any of the specialization skill cards you want, you are not limited. In fact, it will be a good idea to buy outside of your specialty as occasionally you will need a variety of skills to progress past certain areas easily.
Or perhaps I should keep with your idea and have it so that you can only go through the target deck of that skill type if you have that specialization? I guess I just went full circle with this talk then in a way lol

" puts those cards into the store."
Perhaps the number of cards allowed in the store should be dependent upon the number of players, that way the fewer players there are the more likely it is you can buy skills that you want from the store.

I also thought it'd be neat to have one of the character stats affect how many cards you can draw from the skill deck(s) to choose from and/or put into the store.

"As soon as the store offers more than X cards, the oldest cards are discarded."
yeah, i agree about that one. Instead of putting on store though it'd probably be better just to put them on bottom of deck to save space.

devaloki
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schattentanz wrote:... It's

schattentanz wrote:
... It's simple:
We kill the Batman.

No, wait.
Let me start over.

It's simple. It really is. Concept-wise, at least.
Skills are presented on cards.
For each specialization there is a certain number of skillcards available and all specializations use the same number of skills.
As preparation for the game, each specialization's skill deck is evenly divided into two decks:
The target deck and the random deck.
The target deck remains separate from all other decks, while all the random decks are shuffled into one deck.

Whenever a Player kills a monster, he draws a certain number from "his" target deck (the deck supporting his specialization) as well as a certain (maybe smaller number) from the random deck and puts those cards into the store.
Also for defeating the monster he gets a certain amount of store credit that is different from your DE.
As soon as the store offers more than X cards, the oldest cards are discarded.
The player may now opt to buy one of the skill cards in the store. Or he may opt to keep the store credit to buy a more powerful skill later.

That would be my Approach..

Kind regards,
Kai

Sorry, I misread what you wrote I think. So you are saying to have it so each Specialization has their own target deck, and all of the other cards are as one deck, I like the idea. The card store could be displayed similar to the center row in Ascension...

Sorraz
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New Guy....

If you are looking for a way for your characters to keep cards they can't afford, make an Idea pile. I have done this in a Zombie apocalypse game where you build weapons that require any parts you wish. In my game you draw idea cards, and if you build that specific weapon, you get a bonus. For your system, an Idea pile could work in a similar fashion. I can't use this card yet, but as soon as I have enough to afford it, I acquire it! Just my thought, you can figure out a way to make it work, I'm sure, but adding a save feature could be interesting.

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