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My rule draft for the coop steampunk game

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larienna
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I decided to post the current rule draft of my last playtest for the steampunk coop game inspired on Lovecraftian board games.

Originally, I made and completed Eldritch Express where the rules can be found here:

http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/uploads/Mainsite/GameIdea/GameIdea-Eldrit...

The rest of the project with the print outs can be found here:

http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/index.php?n=GameIdea.GameIdea-EldritchExp...

Now, I have been trying to improve the design and re-theme the game with a steampunk theme to make it publishable. I have not succeeded yet. It seems I have diverged too much from the original, making the designs fail. Here is the rule draft of the latest play test:

http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/uploads/Mainsite/GameIdea/GameIdea-Eldrit...

So, I am basically blocked at this point. The only solution so far would be to change the scale to a defend the city, and the objective of the game will be to put out fires.

Tell me what you like or don't like, or if you find a way to unblock the design, let me know.

The design objectives are in the introduction of the rule draft, so keep this in mind when making comments.

It can also serve as a design lesson if you compare both rulesets, as you can see what I decided to change or keep from the original game.

questccg
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Reading rules doesn't really help ...

At least not in the way that I would like to. Do you want to discuss the Theme that you PM-ed me or would you keep that confidential?!

I doubt that even if I read all the rules it will get to the bottom of the issue at hand. See rules and corrected rules just present where you are AT. They don't disclose where you wan to BE. Same goes with rules showing how a game is to be PLAYED versus how you would like the game TO BE PLAYED.

See the subtlety???

So after reading your NEW theme, I had a bunch of ideas. ATM I will only share non-specific ideas which do NOT reveal the nature of the NEW Theme you shared with me...

1> Character Sheets

Having Character sheets allow for different playstyles from one character to another. They may initially START with a series of "Trail Cards" which could be as I explained (and you thought was ok) was Items required for Investigation. Each player may start with TWO (2) Predefined Items and randomly chosen THREE (3) More... So some determinism and some randomness.

2> Make the game a bit harder for the AI (NPCs)

Like I said, instead of just having ONE (1) Focal Point in the game, you can have different scenarios with different locations for the Headquarters (HQ). The NPCs follow a simple rule: go to the nearest unexplored location to determine if it is the HQ. Now this may seem a bit counter-intuitive but even if the players KNOW the location, the RULE for the NPCs are such that the player can figure out WHEN the HQ will be discovered and therefore trigger the end of the game: All Players lose and NPCs win.

3> Having an Investigative AND Encounter Approach

It's good to have a unique way of RESOLVING the NPC's arrival on the scene and in the board/city/location. The Investigation method aims for a way to NEUTRALIZE NPCs without the need for COMBAT. Encountering an NPC is the opposite and suggests that a battle ensues between two (2) or more parties. As I had suggested you could lose some Morale if you cannot Investigate (and have the various items required) and are forced to Encounter the NPC. Furthermore you risk losing Health in combat via Wounds inflicted by the NPC.

4> Having a Church and a Hospital

The Church can bless a player and RESTORE his Morale. The Hospital can HEAL a player which has suffered numerous wound and therefore RESTORE his Hit Points.

5> Having a CAR to move around the board quicker

Instead of Transit, why not have a Sport's Car which can allow from 1 to 2 players to move around the board quicker. Instead of just moving normally. This is something appropriate from your NEW Theme which I will not discuss unless you give me permission. But generally speaking having a way to get around quicker especially when you need to stock up on certain items and need to visit several location before Investigating successfully.

6> NPCs could have CLASSES too!

Instead of NPCs all being generic and the same type of unit, you could create various CLASSES which could all behave a bit differently. Like the Demon, Hell Hound, Succubus, and Dragon ... You could create modern adaptation CLASSES which have a different style of play too!


Let me stop there with ideas that I've just re-hashed and go for more constructive assistance next...


We both agree that having "pieces" to a Puzzle HELP when trying to resolve Investigations. Encounters are last minute efforts which add somewhat of a Tactical Feel to the game ... But players will no doubt prefer the passive method even if it is not always possible.

The whole TWO (2) "Predefined" Item could be PERMANENT. You can REUSE them. Secondly the three (3) "Extra" Items could allow a player to PURCHASE from different locations a RANDOM Item.

What I mean is that on ALL occasions a player may always have FIVE (5) ITEMS at his/her disposal to help with Investigations. When you use of the three (3) Extra and succeed with the Investigation, you can be AWARED with NEW Items which can help in regards to solving more NPC arrivals.

The CAR can be a separate Player Board which allows it to be configurable. I won't explain further because it leans a bit into the NEW Theme of the game and I want to be sure it is okay to discuss it publicly.


So if the goal is to STOP NPCs from finding the Secret Location of the HQ... Players know how difficult or easy (meaning you must defeat an NPC at that location since he/she is proximate to the HQ...) the task is and how vital defeating the NPC really is (at that location).


Tell me what you think and I'll stop now. I don't want too long of a comment. But something we can discuss and you can bring your own ideas, issues and questions to this discussion.

Cheers @larienna.

larienna
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The James bond theme is fine

The James bond theme is fine to discuss, it could indeed work better for a world wide theme. In fact, both systems: Saving the world, and saving the city, are designed to be system adaptable to multiple themes. I could even expect other people to design games with the same system.

Each game should have a twist of it's own like in "Arkham Noir", they share the same system, except for a few new rules.

Other theme ideas so far: Cyberpunk vs corporation, Just cause (vs dictator), Fortune and glory(Indiana Jones), crime fighting, Super heroes (Marvel DAGGER), etc.

I'll finish reading your post later.

larienna
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Things I want to avoid I

Things I want to avoid

I played many game of the same genre from FFG. We could start with what I don't want or dislike in those games. Which was the reason why I got into the project in the first place.

  • I don't want a scripted story, I want the game to be re-playable. The only scripting I would allow is for a campaign mode (ex: Legacy of Yu)
  • I want strategy. Most games of the genre has zero strategy. You move to a location with no idea what is going to happen, you roll a die and suffer the consequences. The game plays you, I want to avoid that. I want players to make meaningful choices by managing their resources or choosing their encounters.
  • Most of the time, there is no reason to visit a location. Why would I go the "Velma's diner" (Arkham horror) when I have nothing that incite me to go there. I want some justification for the action, like I know a contact who hang out there, the investigation trail leads there. The location have a special power I need, etc. This is why I got the idea of making encounter cards drawn in player hands, where they choose which one to resolve.
  • Game ending have no climax. In many games, especially Arkham Horror, when you win the game, it does not feel like if something important just happened, it's just daily routine that ended with a victory. So making the villain angry if the players perform too well, thus increasing the difficulty, was an idea to create climax.

Genre rules

This is a rough list of "Rules" that should define the system and be common to any game:

  • Each player plays 1 or multiple characters.
  • The game is cooperative, semi-cooperative and can be played in solitaire.
  • There is some resource management. Either character specific (ex: HP, money, weapons) or either global to the game (ex: time, progress, doom)
  • Characters can be upgraded somehow with new equipment, skills, resources, etc.
  • There is a villain or a threat that the players are fighting against.
  • Geography seems also important, characters will move around the map and opposition will also appear on the map.
  • Campaign mode, where the outcome of a game impact future game, can be an optional play mode.

Comments to your comments

I though of having character specific assets that could be unlocked with a quest. Android board game had that idea of problems your character needs to solve while investigating.

The goal of the villain/demon, is to change the behavior of the game. I was not sure yet what was the impact yet. One idea was that threat on board was determined by the demon and not the encounter card. This way, the demon would have a pattern, difficulty and flavor of it's own.

Church, hospital and cars makes no sense on a world scale. On a city scale it could make more sense.


Random ideas

Here are 2 examples of investigation trail from Arkham Noir, it illustrates how cards connect to each other by matching icons on the side of the cards. That could be a source of inspiration that could be used for investigation. Maybe trophies creates your trail.

Investigation trail image

Investigation trail image

There is also the Lamplighter video game where it's more like XCOM + Eldritch Horror. You try to sabotage enemy faction to prevent them from winning. There could be some inspiration from there too. The game seems long and difficult.

questccg
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We design differently... I think!

Before I start designing my GAME IDEA... I usually:

A> Decide on the Theme.

B> Decide on how the game is going to be Played.

C> Determine the Player Count

D> And take note of the mechanics I want to include,

You on the other hand seem to be designing an ABSTRACT SYSTEM which can work for Solo, Cooperative and Competitive games. I personally don't like to do that because once I CHOOSE a THEME, that locks in certain other choices. For example, I would DECIDE RIGHT AWAY if it will be World View or City View (for the Board). And I would choose one and go with that.

Working on ABSTRACT SYSTEMS makes it harder to design because you can't make any SPECIFIC decisions like Having a Car (City) versus Having a Plane (World). They would also BEHAVE differently:

1> The Car is faster and takes less moves to move around the city (City View).

2> The Plane can go directly between one city and another (World View).

LOCKING DOWN the THEME means that I no longer need to fiddle with this vs. that. I know what the game is ABOUT.

Secondly I TRY not to design too many modes of play. If the game is COOP so be it. If the game is COMPETITIVE so be it. If the game offers a SOLO mode... Maybe. But I would NOT DESIGN with that in mind. I would focus on COOP OR COMPETITIVE and IF after all is said and done, there is a POSSIBILITY of SOLO play... Well THEN I would introduce it.

You again focus on ABSTRACT decisions which hinder progress because you feel the need to focus on all three (3) modes of play. I don't. I choose one and then I'm done.

Player Counts is important: is 1-Player, 2 to 4 Players, 5 or 6, etc. That will help in determine how MOVEMENT is handled. And other aspects of the game may also be impacted...

I know TradeWorlds has all three: Competitive (1st), Solo (2nd) and Coop (3rd).

But it STARTED as a Competitive Deck-Builder. The other modes came along much further into the process and I did not initially PLAN on having them.

So I guess one of my KEY pieces of ADVICE (take it with a grain of salt) is that you NEED to make some IMPORTANT DECISIONS about your game. If you WANT to continue on developing some kind of ABSTRACT SYSTEM and then re-theme it as you like... I cannot help you.

I feel that method of designing abstract things does not go with my own personal mindset: I like things to be CONCRETE not ABSTRACT.

I personally FEEL your design reference (Arkham, Eldritch, etc.) is WRONG. I would instead focus on PANDEMIC. It has a more closer feel to what you want. Escalation, Tension, Outbreaks, Investigation (remove some cubes from a city), etc. And the Outbreak Meter determines when the "End Game" NPC shows up...

Anyhow that's my conclusions so far...

Note #1: IMHO I would make the game a City Game and give it Pandemic-like mechanics. Would be cool and you would have the tension you are looking for as well as escalation mechanics leading to the Final Boss or NPC to arrive... Key difference between Pandemic where you LOSE the game and this idea where the BOSS shows up and then it's an all-out-battle.

larienna
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The primary objective is to

The primary objective is to be able to play solo, which implied being capable of playing cooperative with many players, unless I choose to hide information from a player to another (ex: shadows over Camelot). The competitive part is very optional. There is only "Fortune and glory" that seem to do this, so I kept the door open, but not a priority.

The theme is important but not to the core system. The theme will determine what will be the twist and unique rules specific to a game. But the system remains the same. I can just chose one in the list and go along with it. Once the game is complete, I would use it as a base for the next game.

For the number of players/characters, I like 4 players max. Like I wrote in the rules, I expect the game to last between 32-36 turns. If I make an 8 player game, that basically means that each player is going to play 4-5 times, which is not enough. So I would say 2-4 characters, since only 1 character can be hard to balance. I generally want a system that scale to the number of players. A bit like shadows over Camelot, every player action will trigger villain actions.

I also want something smaller and have a shorter time frame while delivering a similar experience. Arkham horror could take hours to setup and play. The game progress is very slow. Eldrich Horror streamlined the mechanics and it flowed way better (2 actions, then 1 encounter), but the strategy was awful.

I really like in Arkham Horror the amount of details that each characters could have: stats, clues, money, weapons, spells, etc. Details, make it easier to design rules and mechanics. Maybe I should dive again into Arkham second edition, try to get back the initial experience feeling I had with this game and hope to deliver it. But it would not work on a world scale system, unless each character is not just 1 character, but maybe a boss with minions. So your pandemic idea could work better in that situation. I find pandemic a bit too abstract, it's just cubes, there is no flavor.

I also think focusing on a city system for now should be easier considering the baggage I have so far. I'll see if I can add more details for the concreteness. I know some games like Kick-Ass use deck building mechanism, but it just add too much components for not necessarily a better experience. Still having a deck building villain could be an interesting experience. Not sure if a game did this up to now.

I like some portion of putting out fire mechanism, but I also like mysteries to grow and unfold as the game progress. This is the most complex part so far. A few random ideas I have considered:

  • Hidden info to uncover with progress (like the rebel base in Starwars rebellion). Use deduction from clues collected.
  • Events that gets added each x turn to add new variables, conditions, and increase the difficulty.
  • Make chains of clues.

In eldritch express, there was a race between the doom track and the seal. When you completed encounters the seal progress, while when time passes, the doom progress. First track to reach 0 makes the player win or lose the game. It's simple, and easy to visualize, but might be anti-climatic for a game's ending. That makes all encounters in the same the same, and if some encounters does not make the seal progress, that are way less interesting to resolve. That issue is somewhat there in Elder Sign as not all encounters gives you seals.

larienna
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Side note, I like designing

Side note, I like designing by adding stuff, rather than abstracting and removing stuff.

I wonder if I could not design this game as toy play, like a solo RPG, then constantly add stuff that happens until I am pleased with the results.

This methodology seems to work better in video game design, I always wanted to do additive design with board games.

larienna
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Here is an example of desired

Here is an example of desired gameplay:


You start the "game", you are at home reading the news paper, and you learn that an artifact was stolen from the museum, and that some kids disappeared from an Orphanage.

You decide to take a visit to the museum and start asking question about the robbery. After some talk with the curator, you learn that it's a mysterious artifact imported from South America that seems to belong to the Mayans.

You give a visit to one of your contact downtown who knows a lot about what is going on in the streets. He could probably tell you if he know some tugs that could have done this. After discussion, he does not know about the robbery, but there have been some people will to pay to get kids kidnapped from that orphanage. He give you the name of some people who have been approached for the job.

You wonder if both event are linked together. After meeting those shady people, things are not getting right and you end up in a fight with the tugs. Once defeated, you find some rewards, weapons, and some clues about who have been hiring those tugs.

You end up in another shady place, an old manor, it's locked. You find a way to get in illegally, the place seems empty, but there have been recent signs of activity. After you do some searching, you find a mysterious book written in an language you do not know. Not having much time to look at the pages, you take the book when you hear that people are coming back in. You manage to escape without getting noticed.

You go to the library, ask to see the librarian in order to decipher the book. It happens to be an ancient dialect from South America, hmm! that could be connected to the stolen artifact. He lend you a book that could help you in your translation.

By translating the book, you learn that during a certain moon phase occurring on a certain date, a child must be sacrificed in a ritual requiring the artifact stolen at the museum in order to awaken some ancient horrors that could threaten the city.

You get a phone call from the library that they have been under attack by some shady people, you go investigate to get more details. They were strangely dressed folk who tried to make him talk. He gave them your name, so now they know who you are.

Now you are wondering how should you confront the situation, getting back home might not be a good idea, you take a visit to a friend who is an ex-soldier, now working once a while as a mercenary. You ask if he could help you raid the house you visited earlier because you doubt the police would believe you.

You managed to recruit 5 people, you sneak in the house which happens to be the same day that the ritual had to be performed. You find some cultists in a ritual trying to sacrifice a child. The stolen artifact is floating in the air and emitting a green glow. You attack the cultist, you lose only one men in the process, but you managed to kill everybody else except for one that flee, and one that you captured for interrogation.

You learn that there is much more behind those simple event, and that the worst is to come.


This is the experience I am looking for. If you can tell me how to turn this into a board game, be my guest.

Else, video games are necessary to manage hidden information. But even then, I am not sure it is possible to implement without scripting the story.

questccg
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I've played this kind of game BEFORE!

larienna wrote:
This is the experience I am looking for. If you can tell me how to turn this into a board game, be my guest...

Well TBH this looks and sounds like an RPG like AD&D. But not medieval fantasy. And the reason that I KNOW THIS to be TRUE ... Is in 2021, I was VERY eager to get into an ONLINE Con and I played a DETECTIVE game of Cthulhu.

It was like your "example". It had an ancient Egyptian Artifact at the center of the game. And it was "stolen" from the museum the previous night before. And then we were given some "bread crumbs": A Professor specialized in Egyptian Artifacts at a not too far University might have knowledge about the missing artifact, etc.

The only difference is that during our game there were "perception" checks at each location we visited. To see what "bread crumbs" could be yielded from the locations and the people we encountered.

And so, I have ALREADY PLAYED such a GAME and it was a modern-day AD&D Adaptation... Using Roll20 (https://roll20.net) and it was called "The Idol of Thoth" (https://rpggeek.com/rpgitem/243226/the-idol-of-thoth).

Or here's another link/URL to Dungeon Master with some Comments:

https://www.dmsguild.com/product_reviews.php?products_id=229639

It's an adventure for Call of Cthulhu set in the classic era of the 1920s.

It was SUPER FUN and we (our party of players) solved the game BEFORE things got UGLY (I won't spoil it...)

So YES, I have played such a game. The 1920s adapts well to Arkham or Eldritch Horror as it was during the Prohibition (January 17, 1920) which means there was all kind of Gangsters in a subversive era in which alcohol was made illegal (making, selling and transporting)...

I'd BUY it from DriveThruRPG for ONLY $3.95 USD (Digital PDF):

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product_reviews_info.php?&reviews_id=192954...

Maybe if you BUY this RPG Game for $5 bucks, you may get sufficient CONTENT to HELP YOU design your board game. I'm not saying it's a GUARANTEE ... All I'm saying is to LOOK INTO this RPG game and see how they DOCUMENT IT, see the AD&D elements (We had to kill 2 people in the scenario when we played it...) and all the "checks".

Notice: We had a DM who ran the campaign and we got a bit lucky too...

So to your surprise ... I HAVE experienced such a game. AND IT WAS FUN TOO!

Tell you what, it's ONLY $5 bucks... If you buy a copy and share with me the PDF... I am not going to PLAY. I am just going to SEE IF I can HELP to see HOW to convert to a Board Game...

I'll bet you that you will be surprised... But it's a part of the "Call of Cthulhu" Rule System. There is a FREE Download for "Call of Cthulu" Rule System here:

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/en/product/128304/call-of-cthulhu-7th-editi...

To HELP... I have purchased it ($0.00 PDF Free). I will take a look a bit later...

TBH ... I LOVED this Investigation GENRE... You should really make this game. It would be awesome. But I'm not sure ATM how to make it a "Board Game". There is ALREADY a "System" for it (as explained above). What you need to do is create a CONCRETE IMPLEMENTATION specific to a scenario.

I know that's what you said you DIDN'T want to do... You have to START somewhere...?!

questccg
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First thing first...

You cannot create a Generic or Abstract System. It's too complicated and will get you no-where. Notice all those Rogue-Like Dungeon Crawlers, they all appear to be similar to AD&D but they are NOT...

You have to pick & choose your "battles".

Like for example, "Character Generation". You're not a Video Game like "Fallout" where you can customize every single stat of your Character and choose skills and then how much (in percentages) of each skill given a maximum of points, etc.

So you would have to create maybe like EIGHT (8) Characters and pre-design them to suit "your" game. Like I said, each character could start the game with two (2) Special Items which can be used during the game.

You'll have to TRIM the stats to whatever is REQUIRED and NEEDED by "your" game also. The system is WAY too BIG and have HALF and FIFTH stats too... I'd rid myself of all of that and find a way to get values between 1 and 9, ergo have a way to allocate TOTAL points.

That's what I would start with: Character Sheets and how you can approximate them in "your" game. I guess they are Investigators and therefore should be created in such a way (I don't know what OTHER characters there can be besides NPCs...)?!

You could (FOR EXAMPLE) have maybe five (5) Stats: Strength, Perception, Accuracy, Morale, and Luck.

"Strength": is used in Physical Combat
"Perception": is used to notice or deduce more "bread Crumbs"
"Accuracy": is used in Ranged Combat (Gun, Rifle, Shot-Gun, Tommy-Gun, etc.)
"Morale": is used to know how sane or fearful a character is
"Luck": is used for situations that require a gamble

And lastly "Health" (1d20) to know how healthy a character is (Wounds and/or injuries).

Is this a GOOD "starting" point???

I doubt using the ENTIRE Investigator Character Sheets is necessary. There is just too much going on ... Plus there are "Skills" and Percentages for each...

Let me know what you think about MY approach @larienna...

Sincerely.

questccg
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Characters and Occupations

Character #1 (M): Detective, has high perception, average strength. Has a Hand Gun and Investigator's Notebook.

Character #2 (F): Nurse, has high Morale, weak strength, and average Luck. She has a Medical Kit and can help to heal Physical Wounds. Pill box to temporarily increase Morale.

Character #3 (M): Priest, has high Morale, average strength, high perception. has Holy Water and Cross.

Character #4 (M): Taxi Driver, only player who can Drive the Taxi Cab. Has Car Keys and Shotgun.

Character #5 (M): Thug, has high strength, low Luck. Has a Baseball Bat and Brass Knuckles.

Character #6 (M): Police Officer. Cannot have the Thug and Police Officer in the same Party (one or the other). Has a Hand Gun and Police Vest.

Character #7 (F): Clairvoyant, has very high Perception, Medium Morale and good Luck. She caries around a Tarot Deck and an Ankh (Egyptian).

Character #8 (F): History Professor, has average Perception, Medium Morale. Has the Key to the University Library (to go inside the Library otherwise it is closed) and Mythos Encyclopedia.

Note #1: BTW I went back to your Eldritch Express Game and used investigative characters for that game. I got away from the Secret Agent theme and went back to your original game (that you had thought-up).

I know character generation is the easiest part of the game... But it helps to visualize the elements.

I also introduced SECONDARY LOCATIONS. Like the "University" and its Library. Only the History Professor has access to the Library. Or the "Church" and its Cemetery. Only accessible while accompanied by the "Priest" character.

Not all locations have SECONDARY ones... Only certain specific ones. SECONDARY locations can accelerate the time taken for investigating one type of Event/Encounter. For example...

larienna
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I aimed for 8 stats per

I aimed for 8 stats per character. Look at the steam punk game rules, they are there. There are 4 groups of 2 stats. I am using D8, I love D8. But maybe the stats are values from 1-5, now it's currently 1-6. I need space for bonus and minus. I want to use the fibonnaci sequence. I am hopping of having 5 combat stats, which are more like combat damage type value to compare threat with.

Like you said, pretty much like an RPG, therefore requires a game master. That leaves 2 solution:

* Give a portion of the experience as a board game like found in FFG lovecraftian games.
* Make a video game that will be able to generate those kind of stories.

I am not really sure if it is possible, maybe something can be done using graphs where each breadcrumb is a node. You have a web of consequence depending on if one breadcrumb pass or fails. Then I would have a large database of possible breadcrumbs of various categories that the generator could draw from it.

questccg
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You would need a SmartPhone App

larienna wrote:
Make a video game that will be able to generate those kind of stories.

I don't think it's a Video Game. But a Mobile Phone App which allows you to have a way of Categorizing Information. No rules. Let the players handle the rules. What you really need is:

A> A way to define "Categories" of information.

B> A way to define "Content" per Category.

C> A way to browse "Content" when necessary.

For example:

A> "Demons", "NPCs" and "Party" (Players).

B> The "bread crumb" of information per Category.

So I can have "Section 1.1" (I name it that), Category "Demons", "The Demon has arrived through the Gate with 3 Imps... You must first defeat the Imps before you can Battle the Demon!"

C> Goto "Section 1.1" which has "Demon" Information AND "Party" Information: "If there are more than 3-Players at this location, the Demon will also attack from the start of the Battle."

That's the kind of Phone App you would need. I really WISH I could develop such an App because I also have a game that's been on the Backburner for at least 3 to 4 years and it too requires to HIDE information from the "Party" at certain times. If I wrote a BOOK or GUIDE, players could just read the extra section information which is not relevant to them. Or they could read TOO MUCH and get into the details which allows them to cheat, etc.

Why a SmartPhone App??? Well it's because almost everyone has a Cell Phone. And most are SmartPhones. Having an APP would be the most beneficial platform for this piece of software.

Of course, I know nothing about SmartPhone Apps. Would love to learn. But right now it's not available to me as I have enough projects to contribute to.

Plus it's Summer (or almost) and most people want to be outdoors!

Anyhow ... A generic platform which can read data from a FILE (Game Set) and then display in the APP... I already explained what is NEEDED!

Cheers @larienna!

Note #1: Using JSON, it would be possible to ENCODE the entire App based on the data file. It will dictate which "Categories" exist and doesn't need any PRIOR knowledge of any given "Category".

I'm not experience with JSON ... But I believe you could CONTEXTUALLY create a whole document with all of the "Content" and then load it into a Java APP and be done with it.

The JSON determines the "Categories" and you load the APP and it will allow you to CHOOSE your "Data File" (Parent JSON File). If you want the APP to be GENERIC ... It could have several JSON files for different "games" and you just select from the LIST which Game "Data File" you want to load.

And then it takes over from there. I know it's more complicated but if your JSON Data File is 1 MB ... Remember it's ONLY Text and Identifiers, should be easy to parse and load.

All the HARD WORK is done by creating the proper JSON file. Loading it is like a 1 second operation depending on the SIZE of the "Data File"... And I say it could be like 1 MB (because it's "strings" and Ids).

larienna
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JSON is just a document type

JSON is just a document type data structure. It's like XML but with less verbosity. It allowed nested structures.

questccg
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You make a good point...

larienna wrote:
JSON is just a document type data structure. It's like XML but with less verbosity. It allowed nested structures.

But I think if you know Java (because you said you might learn Kotlin) ... I was figuring you might know Java. JSON is compatible with Java. Weren't you coding in Java for the Wizardry Legacy Remake???

Maybe you can help me with this TINY project. You probably don't have enough time... So I will implement it at a later time.

But here's the JSON File which documents the dynamic content. I have THREE (3) "Categories":

- Common: Which is information shared among all players.
- Party: Which is information shared only among the Manhunt Party.
- Prime: Which is information shared only with the Prime Suspect.

That's what I need to make MY Version work. You of course can check it out and tell me if I have made any mistakes. Here's a URL/Link to the JSON text file:

https://www.questccg.com/shared_info/sample.json

So I too have a bit of an "investigation" game too... But like you I had come to the conclusion that I need to use a SmartPhone App to load the details.

Tell me what you think...? Is this a good idea?! Did I handle the JSON Format correctly?? Do you have a BETTER approach???

Right now, I am waiting for some kind of APP solution.

Cheers @larienna.

Note #1: If you wonder how the FLOW of content is performed, that's each Message which could say: "Storyline Blah-Blah. Proceed to the 2nd Manhunt Party Entry (001-1-2.2)" Something simple like that... Means you can read Blurb #1 AND Blurb #2 and then STOP for something to HAPPEN. Something like that.

I know it seems a bit "fiddly". But it's pretty GENERIC as a format and could be easily tweaked for multiple applications.

If there is something that I missed, please let me know. I'm not 100% sure if I got all the details correctly (with the JSON format) and it being an OPEN format that can be tweaked by the SmartPhone App and then display on the mobile device.

Note #2: There is NOTHING "Automated", it's all controlled by the TEXT and the DIRECTION to follow IN THE TEXT. So it's really a DUMB (or maybe really SMART) APP that loads and displays information as desired. Okay it needs to do SOME "logic" (like handling the "chapters" and counts) but it's far EASIER than something that requires Conditional Branching and Controls the FLOW of the game.

In this case, the READER DOES WHAT IT SAYS. No "Automation" EXCEPT to display the right information (and maybe be able to go Back and Forth, in case you forgot the previous step or instructions, etc.) but there is no HARD-CODED LOGIC.

All that is handled by the person on the SmartPhone. It's kinda like the Table Top Simulator Principle:

Quote:
You make assets available in the view but don't tie any rules to them. The players according to their own will move and make the logic required to make the game WORK! But for TTS or TT ... No game LOGIC.

That's what I am aiming for: KISS. And No control Logic other than instructions read in the "blurbs" which tell you to read the next comment or not... Or read until comment #???... etc.

Note #3: The ONLY difficult part is TOGGLING between USERS: Common, Manhunt Party and Prime Suspect. That's something that WILL be hard coded and therefore make each APP specific. Of course that doesn't really bother me... I'd expect each GAME to have it's own logic and DIFFERENT "categories" anyhow. Perhaps MORE or even perhaps LESS (in terms of categories).

larienna
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I read your post in

I read your post in diagonal.

Wizardry Legacy was coded in C/C++ (more C), trying to keep it as C, and trying to learn D for my projects, libraries, etc. Still, I know Java pretty well because of school, but it's not my favorite language, I am not an OOP fan.

Your JSON has a parse error in my browser. But I could still see the file.

What you are describing is Data Oriented programming, which is somewhat the opposite of Object Oriented programming. It can be done in many file format, JSON is just one of them. ORX was a game library that used that methodology. I am a huge fan of that methodology myself, this is what I wanted to do using relational database. I love those databases because of the strict structure.

The idea is to be able to add considerable content by just adding data or very little code. That should make the development of features pretty fast, allowing many quick play tests and modifications a bit like what can be done in board game design. This is why I wanted to follow this path.

Now the file format you use to make Data Oriented Programming is up to you. I am a sucker for SQL and their query system is very powerful. It can replace many lines of code easily.

--------------------------------------------------------

For the investigation board game system, I wonder if those breadcrumbs could be set individually on cards that you put in your deck or hand that could be used to resolve mystery later. You need to accumulate the right combination of breadcrumb to succeed. Some synergies could exist between breadcrumb, making some encounters easier to achieve. Maybe I should as BGG about it.

questccg
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Space Kraken is a BOOK...

larienna wrote:
I read your post in diagonal.

No worries.

larienna wrote:
Wizardry Legacy was coded in C/C++ (more C), trying to keep it as C, and trying to learn D for my projects, libraries, etc. Still, I know Java pretty well because of school, but it's not my favorite language, I am not an OOP fan.

I used to program in C a lot. My first job AFTER graduating from University was for Hydro Quebec and it was in C and UNIX.

larienna wrote:
I love those databases because of the strict structure.

I don't use Databases unless absolutely necessary. The overhead of using such a tool is really BIG. Especially when talking about a Mobile APP ... I would be very hesitant to use a Database when all you need is a File. I'm into lightweight components and the more "slim" the application can be the better.

larienna wrote:
Now the file format you use to make Data Oriented Programming is up to you. I am a sucker for SQL and their query system is very powerful. It can replace many lines of code easily.

For my own needs, I would not use a Database, nor SQL. I need a FLEXIBLE data format (which is not complete... That was just the First Draft of the JSON file...) and I would re-iterate over the format until it does what I NEED.

***

larienna wrote:
For the investigation board game system, I wonder if those breadcrumbs could be set individually on cards that you put in your deck or hand that could be used to resolve mystery later. You need to accumulate the right combination of breadcrumb to succeed. Some synergies could exist between breadcrumb, making some encounters easier to achieve. Maybe I should as BGG about it.

Yes that could work for YOUR game... But NOT mine. Mine is more STORY-DRIVEN. What I need is to be able to "reveal" the story piece by piece and in a controlled fashion. My Game has more "static" phases (collecting clues and evidence) and then the "Manhunt" phase in which one player assumes control over the Prime Suspect and the other players are the Police trying to solve the nature of the crime.

So what I need is "Common" information for the STORY. Then I need directions for the "Police" to follow (during the Manhunt phase) and lastly of course, I need directions and information for the "Prime Suspect" which is to commit the crime and the "Police" need to stop them...

A bit like "Space Kraken":

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/3dartlab/space-kraken/description

Which is a BOOK, I'd prefer something more GENERIC and easier to use. Plus players can CHEAT and read passages reserved for the "Prime Suspect" or the "Police", etc. I need some kind of ORDERING and RULES... But I DON'T want to write a BOOK to do it.

Sure ... Players can cheat with the APP too... But it's easier to have HIDDEN INFORMATION for the various parties in the game. I'm not trying to PREVENT "cheating", I'm just trying to have a way of having some structure and hide some of the information so that the right party consumes that information and not EVERYONE...

Cheers.

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SQLite is a database in a

SQLite is a database in a single file, and it is used in many mobile apps. Look it up.

questccg
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Something to consider

One advantage to using a Database is that the App has LOWER "Memory Usage". Because with SQL and SELECTs and QUERIES, you can focus on certain aspects of an application and load specific data into memory. That's good because if you have like 1 MB of "Textual" Data ... That's a LOT to load it ALL into memory.

So definitely a STRONG reason to use less memory than loading a JSON file.

There is also the PARSING errors you mentioned before. Of course once you define the Tables and Keys and Foreign Keys and create the relational links ... That's all of the hard work.

Yes I agree SQLite has wide support (Delphi, C, C#, C++, Go, Java, JavaScript, LiveCode, Lue, Objective-C, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby, Visual Basic, etc.)

I would of course lean towards Java because of Garbage Collection and memory handling... Sure OOP is a pain but using a CRUD Model allows you to handle DATA in smaller chunks and opens up the lower footprint when it comes to using a SQLite Database.

I'll think about it some more. I don't know how to code Mobile Apps. It's something that I would like to do... But ATM I don't have much time to focus on (because I have other projects and need to shift into a SALES mode). Meaning all of the projects/games that are near completion, means that soon it's going to be about SELLING them and seeing how much traction I can get in the market (and how to sell to stores and online, etc.)

But I'll definitely take note that SQLite could be used for Mobile Apps and a lot of Mobile Apps are coded in Android Studio (which is Java-based if I am correct...)

It may be more complicated to create the Table Structures and make for MORE generic content (and relational information)... But at the same point could be more beneficial to implement and would definitely be a Mobile Development Project that I could attempt to do since the SCOPE is very narrow...

Thanks for sharing, I appreciate it!

Regards.

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I like making relational

I like making relational models, much easier than object models since you only consider the data.

An entire database scheme and even data could be stored as a simple script file. It takes more space than a database, but could be good for example when you create a new save game, you load the script. Since it's a text file, it can be versioned in git.

If you program in java, I do not recommend using Object relational conversion, I prefer implementing the database communication generically as a record set to accommodate any database schema. I coded such thing many yeas ago, I don't think it's in a git project. If you want, I can send you the class.

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Thoughts about your design and spelling

Spelling-Threath tokens should be threat tokens.

Spelling-contrain should be constrain

Design reduction of components, Design introduction of strategy. Could you a global cyclic schedule to control the strength of encounters instead of using threat tokens? (For example night and day). Some encounters are stronger or weaker depending on what phase of the cycle it you are currently in. This would introduce some strategy as to when have an encounter. An abstraction is each phase could be tied to a shape and the shape would be featured on the encounters. Maybe you could put the cycle on the ancient one equivalent so it can be more thematically and difficultly tuneable. In the steam punk city implementation maybe the cycle could represent the amount of steam production currently taking place or the amount of excess steam capacity. In the spy version this could be the national security concern level (though this is linear and not cylical)

Design reduction of components. Instead of having tokens for stats you could print several icons of stat on each encounter card(similarly to the cards in tracking through history) When a player attempts an encounter thier stats will be sum of the stat icons on the other cards in thier hand. You could also print these stat icons on item/companion cards. If a player is loses a stat(s) they must discard a card(s) with those stats(s). If they cannot or choose not they gain an injury and or madness card.If the gain stat(s) they mill (draw) cards until they find a card(s) that matches the that stat(s). Then add the matching card(s) to thier hand and discard the rest. This is inspired by Montini.

Design reduction of components-Share decks between characters. Replayability would be derived from different player setup and abilities (*admits different abilities increases programming difficulty)

Style (aka opinion). Put th check for game end after a typical turn to make the rules a little easier to parse. This is how it is done in the Ticket to Ride rule book.

Style (aka opinion). Your action system is not to my taste. I also think this is a spot where more strategy could be introduced. Some options to consider:

1> Players have two actions (straight from terraforming Mars and Brass Birmingham)

2> something similar to the dice action selection from wayfarer of the South Tigris. It would be a neat way to do character development, but it would add lot of pieces.

3> Add the action symbols to the encounter cards. To take action players would place a card into thier action queue. Then take the action, then pickup any cards in thier action queue above the characters action card queue limit (maybe like three cards) in the order they were played. (This is inspired by Ark Nova.

I only got through the first 5 pages. Can you let me know if you find this useful? If so will (eventually) get around to going through the rest)

Feel free to disregard use or improve upon.

Good luck with your game.

questccg
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Would love to learn Mobile Development

larienna wrote:
I like making relational models, much easier than object models since you only consider the data.

Sometimes it's more difficult if you are trying to abstract the relationships from the Database and place the "relational logic" in your application. I'm using a 50/50 approach which is some Data Abstraction and some relation info (Foreign Keys) that is used to handle the data correctly.

larienna wrote:
If you program in java, I do not recommend using Object relational conversion...

You mean ORM (Object Relational Mapping). It will depend on how I feel and what I need to do to manage the data (relational logic). Right now, IDK... It's too complex to figure out HOW to handle the application and it's data handling. Since I am in a way partially abstracting the data, I know some BASIC logic has to be handled by the App. Which means that IF I have a generic App some logic will be necessary to work properly with the various tables and their content.

larienna wrote:
I coded such thing many yeas ago, I don't think it's in a git project. If you want, I can send you the class.

Sure send me an email at: questccg[at]hotmail[dot]com

I'll check it out no problemo... Just to see your POV. It'll probably help with the visualization. Like I said, I'm not really a fan of OOP either. I learnt to code back in the procedural days with Turbo Pascal AND C. Only at the end of Turbo Pascal book ... Did they START to introduce OOD/OOP and for the courses, we did not use those last few chapters in the book either.

If I could afford it Financially, I would take a Mobile Development Course. But at the present time, I cannot afford to do that. Paying for the course is one thing, paying for books is another and lastly I have other projects that need my attention at this time.

We'll have to wait and see... I'm getting old... Soon to be fifty (50 years) in October 2024. And going back to school will be harder and harder as I get older. But right now, I have different priorities and that's what I need to focus on FIRST (1st)!

It's been an interesting discussion... Much more engagement than most people on this Forum. Perhaps the only person who posts more is @X3M. But we've got a few newbies and some returning members too... It is what it is and I don't aim to have a multitude of members. Maybe a few more would be good. We'll have to wait and see...

Respectfully @larienna.

questccg
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How to make it SIMPLE and FLEXIBLE...

larienna wrote:
Here is an example of desired gameplay...

One thing to consider is that EVENT Cards are TWO(2) SIDED. The Backside is where you have "Storyline" aspects.

So you draw two (2) STORY ARC cards (Tarot-sized):

1> "As you sit comfortably in your chair at {location} reading the newspaper while enjoying a cup of morning coffee, you learn that an {artifact} was stolen from {"museum"} < "robbery" >.

2> "You notice from the window of your {location}, someone putting up signs about missing {character} < "missing person" >.

3> You fill in the BLANKS: "Artifact" is something that you choose and it will define the STORY ARC but make it replayable. "Location" means select a location to begin the game at and know that the stolen "Artifact" was at the "museum" and so the PLAYER CHOOSES the STARTING VENUE. The game is NOT playing THE PLAYERS, the Players are choosing where they want to go to make the story continue...

{Location} = Apartment (for example).
{Location} = Local Cafe (for example).
{Location} = Church (if you are the Priest character)

etc., etc.

So the players visit the {"museum"} and then you draw an EVENT card.

And it says: "Interview {npc} about < event >. After some discussion you are told that the nature of the event has an ancient Mayan connection which seems to be surround the happenings."

{npc}: "Journalist"
{npc}: "History Professor"
{npc}: "Museum Curator"

etc., etc.

I know it's not PERFECT and requires A LOT OF EFFORT. But the idea is to ABSTRACT the "bread crumbs" and insert VARIABLES which players can substitute.

So instead of ALWAYS going to the MUSEUM... You could go to the "Gazette" or the "University"... etc.

IDK if it's all possible. Sure the game leads you ... But the event cards could offer OPTIONS to the variables. And players can choose WHERE THEY want to go...

It's a bit HYBRID. The Face-side of the Event card contains the "variables" and you can determine what locations can be visited to make the story advance.

Sure it's not 100% FREE FORMING like your example... But it is more FLEXIBLE and players make CHOICES... Giving a TON of replayability and meaning full choices which can affect the outcome.

Just sharing some of my thoughts...

Cheers!

Note #1: I know it's not 100% but the idea is that EVENT cards are drawn at EACH "Location" Visited and offer a series of OTHER "Locations" to visit. When you reach a location you choose another EVENT card which helps develop the STORY and offers you MORE OPTIONS (fill-in the blank and visit another location).

Maybe PLAYERS would need to keep TRACK of "STORY ARC" elements like "< Robbery >", "{Artifact}", "{Location}", etc. To ensure that consistency is applied along the "adventure"...

I know these are JUST IDEAS and that it is difficult to explain. I did my best to TRY to give a SYSTEM (Each location you draw another Event card which leads you to other locations for other reasons and even sometimes NEW Events...) and a way to interact with it.

Note #2: If the Event Deck is FACE-UP, you ONLY see the options ("Variable Values"). If the VALUES don't correspond to your current ADVENTURE, you place the TOPMOST card into a DISCARD and YOU NEVER GET TO READ the "Story information" because that is on the BACK-SIDE...

So if an Event Card doesn't FIT with your current exploration, you discard it and proceed to the NEXT "Event" Card and continue to do so until you have an Event Card which DOES FIT.

Something like that too...

Note #3: The KEY is a NON-BLOCKING solution... Meaning if the "Glove doesn't fit" ... You move on to the NEXT "Suspect"... Same goes for the choices, if they don't correspond to position that you are IN THE STORY you can just discard and check the NEXT Event (until you find one that FITS).

I know it's a bit ABSTRACT and hard to process... It's the best I can do to EXPLAIN a methodology where you can CONTROL the "Story Elements" and still not get to READ ALL BLURBS in order to get one that FITS your position in the adventure.

Again something in that vein...

questccg
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Maybe you could make it ALL "Location"-derived

Meaning that the Face-Up only show "Locations" and the Face-Backs contain the STORYLINES that move the adventure along.

So let's say that in our FIRST (1st) Example... The players see a Face-Up card:

A> Gazette
B> Museum
C> University

And since for the NEXT Event Card we are visiting the "Museum" we select THIS card and READ the Fack-Back Story Element ("Bread crumb") and depending on the nature of the "location" the "Link to {origins} could be different. The "Museum Curator" might say that the "{artifacts}" "{origins}" is MAYAN. Where the "Gazette Journalist" says the "{origins}" are UNKNOWN (dead-end). And maybe the "University Professor" says that the "{origins}" is EGYPTIAN.

The players take note of the "{origins}" and DOCUMENT that variable.

Because everything is CONTROLLED by LOCATIONS it would just seem more acceptable to go to locations that are "suggested" or PLAUSIBLE. And they affect the STORIES told to the party/players.

It would be SIMPLER to make everything LOCATION-specific and the STORIES vary according to the location.

IDK, I'm just thinking ATM and figured that since everything is driven by locations, the Face-Up options should be "LOCATIONS" too.

Right now ... That's all I got!

You can GO TO ANOTHER LOCATION based on your CURRENT Location and figure out an Event card with the DESIRED LOCATION INSTEAD. It suggested "museum" but you desired to go to the "gazette" instead ... And then the story becomes more flexible and goes in ANOTHER direction.

It's tough to explain. Not sure if this METHOD would work (everything is handled based on the LOCATION you visit)... You go to the locations and then you draw until you get LOCATION-COMPATIBLE Event. That's perhaps as CLEAR as I can explain it...

Sincerely.

Note #1: So say we had "3 Locations" and instead of choosing any of those locations, we want to visit the "Police Office" instead.

So you would WAIT for an Event with a "Location" = "Police Office" and proceed with the STORY (BLURB) of that location INSTEAD. So players are CHOOSING where they WANT TO GO, meanwhile the Events are suggesting different locations to visit.

IDK if it would all work together... It's hard to picture the ENTIRE game with this sort of "Variable Substitution" ... And Event-driven based on Locations.

questccg
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Furthermore...

If the NEXT Event Card (Face-Up) says:

A> Gazette
B> Museum
C> University

And the location that has been selected (by the previous Event) was the "museum", the player can choose to move to ANOTHER location like the "University" knowing that the card AT TOP the Deck offers three (3) LOCATIONS which players may choose from.

Again it doesn't mean that players need to choose this Event Card and Location. Like I said, they can go to the "Hospital" instead and wait for an Event Card that has the "Hospital" as one of its LOCATIONS.

This is sounding more and more as something that COULD work ... But you need to ensure that all the Events are "Investigative" in nature and sufficiently GENERAL to accommodate a lot of "sequences".

The goal being to SUGGEST where to go and also let players CHOOSE if they want to explore on their OWN.

Cheers @larienna.

Note #1: Having two (2) STORY ARCS (2x < Events >) means that the "bread crumbs" may relate to ONE ARC as opposed to BOTH. What I mean is that by going to the "Police Station" you INVESTIGATE the < Event > which is the "missing person" ...

Having TWO (2) ARCS allows you to further EXPLORE one at each step instead of requiring that BOTH of them need to be fulfilled by a specific "bread crumb".

So while you were going to INVESTIGATE the "Museum Robbery", instead you went to the "Police Station" to explore the "Missing Person".

See what I mean??? I'm hopeful that this works LONG-TERM. However I'm not 100% sure TBH. These are just IDEAS and... You know what I say about IDEAS: "They appear to be AMAZING and when you try them... They need work!"

Same with this collection of THOUGHTS ... They may HELP ... But you'll have to work on the "bread crumbs" to ensure they are GENERAL but also offer specific information too (like the A> UNKNOWN, B> MAYAN and C> EGYPTIAN)...

I feel like there is something here... Just not sure if it can be sufficiently FLEXIBLE ENOUGH!

Note #2: If one (1) player decides he is going to visit the "Log Cabin" in the Woods, he could find CLUES regarding a Ritual that must have occurred a FEW DAYS ago.

Maybe you can DIVIDE locations in various stages and some locations allow you to advance or not ... I've got the Travelling around and going where the players want... What I think is missing is ESCALATION.

This can be achieve by GAME PHASES and SEPARATE DECKS (for the Events). So some are "Early investigation", "In the Heat investigation" and then "Resolution investigations". And what can decide this is the "Background Colors" of the Face-Up cards faces or maybe a number from 1 to 3 in the Top-Left-Hand corner, etc.

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Here's what I mean

With the last NOTE... I talked about "Game Phases" and "Escalation". What I think you will need is NUMBERS in the Top-Left-Hand Corner which determine the "Factor" for the "bread crumb".

I'm not sure HOW MANY(?!) numbers you need. But the idea is to either progress in the same Level or go to the next Level. This will create PHASES and allow for ESCALATION.

Like 1, 2, and 3 could be EARLY Investigation sequences. 4, 5, and 6 could be MEATY Investigation sequences. 7, 8, and 9 could be CONCLUDING Investigation sequences.

It doesn't mean that 7, 8, and 9 are ALWAYS "Escalations", but they could be a way to wind-down the Investigation. Some of them could be more Dangerous and you have like a Doomsday Prophecy which realizes itself. But it doesn't mean that ALL games end with that kind of "intensity"!

I used "MEATY" because I want it to be HARD-CORE investigations (where the "meat" of the game feels like it's focused). First few sequences are introductory and lead to more "serious" details and sequences.

Something like that...

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English is not my native

English is not my native language, so you can expect spelling errors especially in a rule draft that I took no care to pass through a spell checker.

Phasing is interesting, I could use moon phases for example, or like you said day or night. This is a kind of mechanic that could be a twist unique to a specific game rather than the whole system.

I intended to have some sort of linear progress. If players are going to win the game too fast, the villain gets angry and now change or increase the difficulty of everything that is in play.

For the stats token, the default characters attributes are written on the character card/sheet. There could be power up or power downs of those stats through training. For power up, I was thinking of using cards split in half double sided. So 4 attributes per cards. You slide the card under your character to expose the attribute you powered up. For power down, I could have similar cards, or the source of the power down will have it's own component.

It might not be clear in the rules, because I did not have all the detail. One idea to reduce components, was to have half cards. For example, the first half could have a quest, and the second half a reward asset. When you complete the quest, you slide the card under your character to hide the quest, and expose the asset now ready to be used. The main drawback is that it strongly ties the quest and the asset together. If both cards were separated, you could have different, but more random, outcome. There are various ways to use double cards, I did not decide yet how they will be used.

I also had some issues with the action system. If you look at the notes I taken during the last play test (maybe I should add the link), I complained about the action system. The objective was to have some sort of opportunity system compared to Eldritch Horror where you could chose any 2 different actions. I also want to avoid the set making from my Eldritch express which I found too abstract. So I came with the action system that is semi random, you priorize your opportunities. I think one of the criticism was that it slowed down the game too much. Maybe there could be another way to restrain certain actions. Using deck building is a solution, but it requires many cards unless there is only 1 character. Either certain actions can only be done in certain locations, or there is some action blocking mechanism to certain areas of the board. The actions themselves changed a lot through the design, but one thing for sure is that you can resolve 1 encounter per turn whatever the actions taken. I guess, having actions specific to each location is plausible in the city scale version like Arkham horror. You want to heal, you need to be in the hospital space. For the world scale version, there should be hospital everywhere.

The insertion of stuff is not a bad idea. It is similar to categories of stuff. For example: You have an encounter at the church, draw an enemy of category "Humanoid", and the reward is an artifact of category "book". This way, there is a certain amount of randomness with constraints. You draw cards until you find one that match the category like in Eldritch Horror. It's the best alternative to using double cards and linking both together.

Right now, the encounters are linked by type ( rift, mystery, worshiper, disaster, etc) I allow each area to have at most an encounter of each type in the area. But like used in "a touch of evil", each location could have it's own deck of cards, giving a different flavor. The drawback is that in campaign mode, I need to save the status of multiple decks, unless the back of the cards are marked.

I posted the story sample and got interesting feedback over there too. I'll link it to this thread later.

***

For mobile development, it really depends what you want to develop with. I have worked with Libgdx, and I have participated in a project that used google API to create activities. They were both completely different worlds. The google API looked more like web development. So my take is: find a tool, library, language that matches your way of thinking which can allow mobile development. This is one of the reason I looked into Raylib and D language, we seem to think the same way.

questccg
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Android IDE like "Microsoft Visual Studio" for Visual Basic

larienna wrote:
For mobile development, it really depends what you want to develop with...

That's not the nature of my question. My question is: "How do MOST people who develop Mobile Apps do it?"

larienna wrote:
I have worked with Libgdx, and I have participated in a project that used google API to create activities. They were both completely different worlds. The google API looked more like web development. So my take is: find a tool, library, language that matches your way of thinking which can allow mobile development. This is one of the reason I looked into Raylib and D language, we seem to think the same way.

What I want is something like "Bootstrap 5.0": SIMPLE but EFFICIENT.

Furthermore I want something that allows me to create UI Elements. Much like back in the day "Microsoft Visual Studio" could allow me to DESIGN VISUALLY my Windows, Pop-up Dialogs, etc.

I want an IDE that allows me to CREATE the UI. Sure there are DYNAMIC parts to it like "Messages", "Alerts" and "Error Logging" which is never static and is a consequence to using the Mobile App...

But I WANT to be able to create the UI.

Much like Bootstrap, once you learn the Classes and have access to the Documentation... The TOOL helps diminish the time spent DESIGNING the UI with all kinds of "instantiation" and "Event Handlers" and so forth...

Have you ever seen "Microsoft Visual Studio"??? It allows you to create icons, dialog windows, pop-up windows and even message lists which can be localized.

Is it Android Studio? Something I think created by Google. Or is it something else that I don't know much about... I really don't know much about the Mobile Android Development scene. I don't so much want to work on Languages and Libraries... I want an IDE for Mobile Development. IDE = Integrated Development Environment. And I want to do like "Microsoft Visual Studio" and DRAW/DESIGN my windows and components.

I've seen some video about how the developer works in Dark Mode with Gradients and creates SEXY looking Interface ... I unfortunately don't know HOW or more WHAT he was using to make that SEXY looking UI.

It's like with "Bootstrap 5.0"... Why do I LIKE it so much???

#1> It's Mobile Device Friendly. So my website will look nice on phones as it will on a desktop screen.

#2> It's minimalist. Unlike Tailwing CSS which requires like 5+ class to define one component appearance ... Most of "Bootstrap 5.0" can be achieved with ONLY ONE (1) Class name.

#3> It's documentation is well made and TO THE POINT. There are examples and there is also a discord server too... But I've read through the documentation and TBH I've found items or components that were NOT covered in my ONLINE course... Like "Offcanvas" which is a bit like when you use Discord and you swipe to the LEFT or RIGHT and different control areas appear. Left twice and you get the User List, Left once and you have the main channels, etc.

So that's what I like "Bootstrap 5.0". It allows much LESS TIME in creating the Web Controls (UI) that I need for my websites. Is it PERFECT??? NO. Does it require making compromises? Indeed it does. But the benefits outweigh the disadvantages (overall).

Therefore I would be looking for an IDE for Android. And preferrably the language it should use is Java. I'm more fluent with Java, besides HTML 5.0 and CSS 3.0, and I've used it in my career to develop a lot of Webservices.

I'm not a PRO at Java ... But with some examples, I should be able to learn and adapt to whatever it is that I am working on ATM.

larienna
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I sent you my database java

I sent you my database java package by email.

I sent you a git archive of my school project that used android studio. The package was 20 meg, so it could bounce.

A bootstrap-ish interface for android, I am sure somebody somewhere did this. Else, there is probably a way to have a webrowser widget that you can place inside an app and put the content as a web page. A bit like when you start Steam, the home screen is like a web page.

Fri
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Joined: 09/06/2017
Elder sign

I ran across a game called Elder sign. It is Cuthulu themed with cards and dice. It maybe worth checking out to see if it gives you any inspiration.

Good luck with your game.

larienna
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I am a huge fan of elder

I am a huge fan of elder sign, in fact I ended up keeping this game and getting rid of AH and ES. I would have thought the opposite. I own the game + one expansion and I have also the app. It's a shame that other expansions seems out of print. I missed my opportunity to get "omens of the pharaoh".

Many ideas in my Eldritch Express game comes from elder sign. The dice rolling, the clock, some of the resource mechanism, etc.

I think going for a city scale game could make more sense. I remember many year ago, I was really fascinated about Arkham Horror and wanted to know more about it. I like the more personal aspect of the game. You even had money that you could spend. Maybe I should return to the roots and try to get that experience again.

Not sure if I would have something meaningful to gain from making the game solitaire only. Only the sharing of information seems to be impacted. I prefer having 1-4 character to allow coop game play, it makes the game more flexible. Even if I want to use resource heavy components like deck building, 1-4 players is manageable.

I also remember there was a crime fighting game called "Kick-Ass" that had interesting mechanics. They used deck building as their core mechanism. Not sure I want this, but it could be worth a try.

To keep components low, I could have a limited deck building mechanism similar to Mage Knight adventure game. Each player has a deck of 10 cards only, and upgrading your character substitute cards, but you always have 10 cards. Playing a cards disables it for 1 or 2 turns until it get reshuffled and redrawn.

That could be a substitution for the action dice system, but it would be more expensive since you need at least 10 cards per player plus the upgrades, plus cards specific to each character. Maybe there is a way to get a similar experience with dices or worker placement.

Remember my thread that card play, worker placement and another mechanic, was very similar. Maybe each player could have a sheet where there place cube to activate actions(worker placement) and they remain disabled for the next turn, or if you use twice, you disable it on the next turn.

I think Marvel D.A.G.G.E.R have a similar system, I would need to check it out again. Of course, character upgrades could add or improve actions.

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