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Pocket AFL (Australian Rules Football dice game) - playtesters and feedback required

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HPS74
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The makers of Pocket Cricket are looking for playtesters / feedback on the beta version of Pocket AFL. The final version will have coloured custom dice with words on each face, so the charts below are only required for beta testing. FEEDBACK AND COMMENTS APPRECIATED!

Note - IT IS A DICE GAME - THERE IS A PUSH YOUR LUCK MECHANIC - YOU CAN USE A D6 & COIN TO MOVE ON CHARTS (TURN COIN OVER WHEN POSSESSION CHANGE S TO KEEP TRACK OF WHICH SIDE HAS THE BALL)

Pocket AFL - Note* You need to know the basic rules of AFL to understand this game. The game uses a POOL of dice that both players use when in possession.

Defensive (D)
1) Tackled (C)
2) Run&Bounce / Skillz
3) Handball (D)
4) Shortpass%(M)
5) Kick %(W)
6) Long Handball (M)

Midfield (M)
1)Torpedo %(F)
2)Run&Bounce/ Skillz
3)Kick %(F)
4)Kick %(W)
5)Handball (M)
6)WHISTLE! (W)

Wing (W)
1)Kick %(M)
2)Run & Bounce/Skillz
3)Kick %(F)
4)Long Range Goal(F)
5)Fumble! (T)
6)WHISTLE! (W)

Forward (F)
1) GOAL
2) Behind!
3)GOAL
4)Smothered (C)
5)Hit the post - Behind
6)Out on the full (T)

Pass success (%)
1)Good mark
2)Spoil(T)
3)Nice grab!
4)Punched away (C)
5)Screamer!
6)Def Mark! (T)

WHISTLE (W)
1)Push in the back
2)Tackled & Injured!
3)Dropping the ball (T)
4)Throwing the ball (T)
5)Holding the ball (T)
6)Coat Hanger! 50M

Contest (C)
1) Barges thru pack (T)
2) Hip & Shoulder (T)
3) Steps & Spins
4) Picked up (T)
5) Off the toes
6) Quick Hands

LENGTH OF GAME – 4 QUARTERS
Before starting, agree on a time for each quarter - for example - 5 mins. Keep playing until time is up. Winner is the player with the highest score (goals + points). Use a pen & paper to mark scoring.

All dice are different colours. The game uses the traffic light principal.

Red for the Defensive (D)
Yellow for Midfield (M) & Blue for Wing(W)
Green for Forward (F)

The four key positions - DEFENSE / MIDFIELD / WING / FORWARD

The aim is to roll through the positions until getting the ball successfully to the FORWARD position. The FORWARD (or possession gained by a FORWARD) will then kick towards the goals

Field position is quite easy if you think about it logically. If your DEFENSE losses the ball, it is picked up by the other team's FORWARD - then they are kicking on goal.
If the ball/possession is lost in the MIDFIELD or on the WING - possession changes hands, but the field position remains the same.
Ie. MIDFIELD player loses the ball = opponent's MIDFIELD player takes possession.

HANDBALL / KICK to team mates

Any HANDBALL to a team mate is automatically successful. If DEF handballs to MIDFIELD - you then roll the MIDFIELD die.

KICK to another team mate requires the PASS SUCCESS(%) die to be rolled - to determine if the mark has been taken, OR, ball is CONTESTED (C) or TURNED OVER (T)

If the Mark is taken, the receiver player then continues rolling.

CONTESTING THE BALL (C)

Centre ruck - at the beginning of the game, and after each GOAL is scored, play starts by rolling the CONTEST (C) dice. Either player can choose to start, or the player that scored the last goal can start.

Some rolls require a contest for the ball. Simply roll the CONTEST die to determine who gains possession.

WHISTLE

The Umpire blows his whistle for any infringements –
The player currently in possession when WHISTLE is rolled - will roll this die. The result shown will either remain with the player OR, TURNED OVER (T) to the other player.

If the Coat Hanger! 50M is rolled. Play will automatically move to the FORWARD (F) die.

RUN&BOUNCE / SKILLZ

For simple play, when RUN & BOUNCE is rolled, your player is simply gaining ground and you can roll again. See Advanced Rules for re-roll options

Advanced rules

The SKILLZ die is used to gain Skillz points (DURING ONE PASSAGE OF PLAY ONLY), which can be written down. These can then be used in two different ways;

A player in possession can choose to use 1 Skillz point to RE-ROLL once. They must clearly state they wish to do this and cross out the written down point.
If a player has a rolled the CONTEST (C) die and lost possession, he may elect to RE-ROLL by using 1 Skillz point, and hope for a better result. The RE-ROLL cannot be used to change a result from a BEHIND and try for a GOAL!

OR A player can choose to use 3 Skillz (IF COLLECTED WITHOUT LOSING POSSESSION IN ONE PASSAGE OF PLAY) to CHANGE ONE FACE OF THE FOWARD DIE, to give an extra chance of scoring a goal.

Example – I have 3 Skillz points – I have shot on goal – I nominate that “OUT ON THE FULL” becomes “GOAL” for this shot only. If I roll “OUT ON THE FULL” it is counted as a GOAL
It is only good for one time use only – if a GOAL is scored or any other result, the 3 Skillz points have been used.

Injuries – If the result roll on a WHISTLE is Tackled & Injured – the player in that field position can no longer gain SKILLZ points as they are injured.

Hope some fellow Aussie Rules fans will have a game. Up there Cazaly!

Impudent Mortal
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Cheers mate!

I will be playing this tonight! I don't get to see many AFL games, so this may be an acceptable substitute.

You have also piqued my interest with your cricket game. Is it like 'Owzat or is this something different? I haven't been on this forum long so if you can point me to rules I'd appreciate it.

HPS74
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Pocket Cricket

No probs.

www.pocketcricket.com.au - On the About Us page at the bottom is a PDF of the rules. Again, you can use a D6 and play.

Hope you like it.

Impudent Mortal
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Ooo

Love it; order coming.

I am playtesting Pocket AFL now, more later!

HPS74
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Cool....looking forward to

Cool....looking forward to some feedback!

The cricket game will be sold at all venues this summer where Australia plays.

Impudent Mortal
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Quick question

I got distracted by real life and your Pocket Cricket for a day.

I have a question regarding your AFL rules. In the RUN&BOUNCE / SKILLZ section, the rules state "The SKILLZ die is used to gain Skillz points".

Which die/table is the SKILLZ die?

At first glance, I was under the impression that SKILLZ points were accrued by rolling a 2 on the appropriate table. I understand the use of SKILLZ points, I am just unclear on their accrual.

I am I being dense?

HPS74
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No.....there is no table for

No.....there is no table for Skillz. You're correct - rolling a 2 earns a Skillz point. 1 point each time you roll it.

They can be accrued for one passage of play only. Used individually for a re-roll, or if you accrue three points, you can change the face on the FORWARD die for one time only.

Use a pen and paper for scoring and recording Skillz points. If you don't use them, you lose them.

Did you like the cricket?

Impudent Mortal
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Cool

Sounds good; I presumed as much since your intent seemed clear but when I got to the mention of the SKILLZ die it threw me.
I have been playing it a bit - just rolling and table hopping. I intend to play a full game tonight with 20 min quarters and I'll let you know how that comes out.

As for the cricket, brilliant. WAAAAAY better than Owzat and other cricket dice I have seen. I love the choice of batting dice. Get ready to send a set to the antipodes as soon as I find the GF's bank card.

HPS74
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Cool - are you in the States?

Cool - are you in the States? If so I may have just got your order...

Impudent Mortal
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Yup.

I am in Nebraska, the BEST state. Non-Nebraskans may claim otherwise. It's the Alice Springs of states; thousands of miles from any ocean. We're notoriously poor sailors, but strangely enough the US Olympic swim trials are held here. I didn't say we're the logical state.

HPS74
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Oh...wasn't you then! All

Oh...wasn't you then! All good!

Impudent Mortal
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Test Cup

I haven't gotten around to playing a full time game yet, but I did play a four team tournament. Each game was 5 min quarters and whereas play was a little slow as I got accustomed to moving around the tables, it quickly picked up as I got more familiar with them. Consequently, scores were a little low in the first game but picked up as the game pace did.

The cup game was won by the Headleyville Headhunters over the Tailslington Tailgunners by 5. Heads 2.3 (15), Tails 1.4 (10).

Objectively I can say the game works fine. No dead ends, no ambiguous results, and no questions of procedure reared their ugly heads. Everything is accounted for and the game is solid. There's no way to "break" the game or play divergently so there's no game killing saddle points. It is ready for market.

In my subjective opinion, I love it and think it's the cat's meow. I have a special place in my heart for "schedule games" like this and their transferred-to-dice equivalents; I did a few of these myself in my younger days. I own a number of these type sports themed games and can't wait to add your AFL to my collection.

All of my emotionally based reactions are invalid due to the format I tested. For example, I had a little difficulty keeping track of field position on occasion when I was making kicks; I had to remember what table (die) to go to after a % table roll. However, this was more of a function of using the tables instead of the dice. If I had the color-coded dice, the field position would have always been obvious since the die is in hand.

The only other slightly odd thing was contesting the ball-up. Being as the Contest die results are "retain possession" or "turnover", it sort of implies that there is already possession. In a real ball-up, there is no "turnover" or "retention", so to whom (which team) does the result apply?
I did this after scoring by giving the team that just scored the theoretical possession for the ball-up contest roll. For the beginning of the halves, I just flipped the coin I was using to track possession.
I think anyone who plays this will most likely figure out a similar solution, but a sentence or two in the rules might clarify your intent and make it a non-issue altogether.

I found the game to play very realistically as a simulation. The movement of the ball, the turnovers, the whistles, the shots on goal, and the scoring itself all seemed to happen at appropriate rates. Meaning, the occurrence of events happened in proportionately realistic cycles.
I found myself cheering for teams. I found myself expressing exasperation when a kick on goal was charged down. I almost put my fist through the wall when a Tailslington kick on goal resulted in defensive speckie shortly before the final siren; it made the difference in the final of the Test Cup. My money was on the Tailslington come-back.

I think you're onto another winner to go with Pocket Cricket. The fast play and realistic results make it a fun diversion for fans and esoteric gamers alike. Its portability translates into quick learning of the mechanics and should allow anyone unfamiliar with AFL to jump right in. Nice work Ham.

I presume you'll pursue AFL licensing similar to what you did with Pocket Cricket and CA?

HPS74
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Thanks for the honest

Thanks for the honest feedback. I will address the Ball Up issues in the rules. I usually allow the choice between players to decide who rolls the Contest die, otherwise the player that scored the GOAL will restart play and roll the Contest die.

You are correct that scanning tables is not ideal and the custom dice will make gameplay flow easier.

Did the modifiers (Skillz points) work within the game?

I would certainly like to license with the AFL and I'm hopeful after a strong first summer with Pocket Cricket, our brand (Pocket Sports) will be solid enough to approach them. More playtesters will be required from here and over the off season, to look at next year trial production.

Cheers

Impudent Mortal
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Skilly

HPS74 wrote:
I usually allow the choice between players to decide who rolls the Contest die, otherwise the player that scored the GOAL will restart play and roll the Contest die.

I instinctively thought as much. This should be fairly obvious to the majority of your customers as well, but it never hurts to make sure.

HPS74 wrote:
Did the modifiers (Skillz points) work within the game?

I knew I forgot to mention something!
In the 3 games played, a total of 26 SKILLZ points were accrued amongst all teams. There were occasions early on when I forgot I could use them and carried on when I could have re-rolled. Once I started remembering to use them strategically, they came in quite handy. Mostly I used them for re-rolls on turnovers or to avoid having to Contest. Only once did I accrue enough in a single possession that I modified a Forward roll, which I think is frequent enough considering it ups the odds of a GOAL to 50%.

The big "problem" I had with SKILLZ points was remembering to clear the slate when possession changed. I was having too much fun rolling the dice and some of my accountancy became sloppy. This didn't adversely affect play because when a SKILLZ point came up again and I went to record it, I would notice the previous possession's tally was still on the board: "Oh, I don't have those points anymore" and I would reset to zero. At no time did I carry over SKILLZ to a new possession so everything worked out fine.

The SKILLZ points work well. Not too many, not too few. They don't overpower a player, but they do manage to provide an appropriate amount of strategic choice for the player. SKILLZ points have something of a PYL factor; hang on to them too long and you lose them. They are a valuable aspect of the game and without them the game risks automatancy.

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