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Monster Keep: Another day, another prototype

A short while ago, I decided that I was going to BENCH (and therefore stop working on) "Monster Keep" (MK). Why? Because "Crystal Heroes" (CH) is based on Medieval Fantasy and I felt that having MK with the same type of "theme" might be no good (too much repetition). Although CH is very different than MK, that aspect of the theme being similar had me thinking that there was little VALUE in the MK franchise.

But in the last couple of weeks, I have had RENEWED interest in MK. Basically I reviewed the cards and thought: "How neat they are!" The cards with their Tactics, Stats (Power, Skill and Magic), the cleverness of the MATH, etc... It all led me to re-believe in this small-footprint game.

Of course the MK design is NOT final.

There is still a LOT of work to be done especially fine-tuning details such as HOW to permit attacking, what are the values able to attack and determining the housekeeping and how attacking will affect it.

I will post back when I have MORE news about the design. In the present moment, I'm just doing some fine-tuning of MK to see where it can lead me.



Simplified Damage Type RPS

The second (2nd) one is based on type of Damage being dealt:

Melee => Explosive => Ranged => Wizardry => Flying => Melee.

That's the RPS. It's does not account for ALL combination ... Only a PENALTY system for these match-ups. They take a "-1 DMG" PENALTY.

So "Explosive" takes a -1 DMG penalty when facing a Melee Monster (for example).

Like I said a PENALTY system like this seems to be "acceptable"...

No other combinations. This is not a FULL RPS-5 ... Instead it is a series of PENALTIES driven by a partial RPS-5 that only goes AROUND which is EASY to remember.

Trying to keep things as SIMPLE as possible but also have some good mechanics.


Note #1: As @X3M suggests, this could be a PENALTY system for ADVANCED PLAY. Making the game just a little bit HARDER given that some match-ups do LESS Damage than the DEFAULT PLAY which does NOT take into account the "Damage Types". Sounds perfectly acceptable to me.

Fixed the Frolicking Fairy and Midnight Hunt Monsters

I had two (2) cards which needed NEW "Tactics". The first (1st) the Fairy which would grant +1 "REACH" Level and since there is no more REACH ... Only an RPS which determines who can attack whom, I made the ability that "One Monster can Attack twice (2x)". That allows any Monster to perform a SECOND ATTACK on the same turn. Not too bad... I don't see any "Meta" issues with this.

Yes it is beneficial but not too overly powerful. Either way it costs the player Mana from his Pools to do so... So it's an "average" ability and no need to wonder if it can be abused.

The second (2x) card is the Werewolf which would allow an Attack to be Blocked during that Round. That is just too POWERFUL. 3x this card and virtually NOTHING will happen during the "Battle Round". Totally abusive especially in "Meta-Gaming"!

I nerfed the ability to be "Remove the Arcane die from an Attack". This means that potentially an 2 Point Attack can be BLOCKED. Kind of in the same spirit as before but more flexible in that it's not a permanent block.


Also the distribution looks like this:

A> 11 Monsters have a Power-type Attack.

B> 7 Monsters have a Skill-type Attack.

C> 9 Monsters have a Magic-type Attack.

I'm happy with this distribution too... Looks pretty decent and follows the order that I've been prioritizing. Sure there could be a "Meta-Gaming" issue with the Skill-type Attacks ... But it's up to the Players to BUILD their Decks according to what works best for them!

I really don't foresee this as a PROBLEM. Just someone might be more creative with their Deck and come up with something tougher to Battle... That's all. No worries here with the "Meta-Gaming"!


I've almost completed the editing for tonight and will maybe get the opportunity to produce the PDF files for the cards so that I may be able to print them at Staples. I've got one (1) page of EDITS to finalize and I should be good-to-go! Can't wait to PLAYTEST this Version 23 of the game... Lots of small things have changed and much of the design was STREAMLINED for more simplicity instead of too much TIME taken to play.

The only possible problem is Round #4... The "Battle Round". I need to see how SMOOTH and FLOWING this Round is. Hopefully no A/P and generally a sense of HOW to Attack and how long this Round takes (is to be determined).

I'm capping it off a 20-Minutes. No more than that. We'll have to see when I time it... How long it takes in REALITY. But the THEORETICAL limit is 20-Minutes.


Last minute EDIT of the "Mercurian Speed" (Hermes) card was required to re-word the ability... Before it said "First to activate starts the NEXT Round." This had to be changed to "First to activate starts the BATTLE Round." Which makes this card a bit more helpful in deciding who goes first. If you are Player #2, playing this card EARLY can ensure that you gain the First Attacker advantage.

TBH I'm not really sure there is a BONUS to going first... But it may allow you to be one-step ahead of your opponent (so-to-speak).

Cheers all.

All done! (Next is printing and cutting ... Again!)

I had a bunch of FIXES as I completely REMOVED "Active" Abilities and either made them "Passive" or "Interrupts". This is because there is no longer a need to have any decision making in-between Round #1 and Round #3. Also had to do some edits to focus on Round #4 (the Battle Round).

As ominous as that sounds... It will be a EPIC "slug-fest" which could last up to 20-minutes if things go as planned. I am really HOPING that the fourth (4th) Round does not take longer to play, we'll have to wait and see after I get a chance to take this Version 23 for a "spin" (so-to-speak)!

It took me 4:30 minutes to do the last EDITS. 4.5 Hours ... Imagine that. Cutting will no doubt take up another 4 Hours ... That's how much time cutting takes. Usually edits are maybe an hour or two... This time due to how MAJOR the edits were (specifically re-designing how the HP will work) and removing some of the concepts like "REACH" Level and such, meant that there were a LOT of changes and had to balance things out better.

Now things appear to be OKAY.

We'll see how the game plays now that I've made dramatic changes to influence the play time (Length of a game was about 45-Minutes, I hope to get it around 20 to 25-Minutes).

Maybe I'll get the time to playtest later this week and report back.


Step #1: Printing ... Done!

So after EDITING comes (usually) Printing and I visited a local Staples to make printouts of the cards. It costs about $5.00 CAD which is not too bad, I support the local copy center with regular business by printing there.

Sure I could probably save the $5.00 CAD ... But it's a small price to pay in order to get Full Color cards and ensure that I don't make any mistakes for the actual production copies of the game.

You learn stuff... Like "Global Black" and "Black" are NOT Black when you print them in CMYK. They're a sort of dark gray. "Rich Black" is CMYK (60%/100%) and is accurate both on the screen and in printing. Like I said, in the process you do learn stuff...

And I was doing things in Illustrator with CMYK because the actual production will be in CMYK and it is better if I figure out the colors NOW to ensure that when the production is done, the right colors will be displayed! So it's a prototype and I've spent $5.00 CAD to make it. Pretty decent. It's not like games and copies from "The Game Crafter" (TGC) which cost me around $50.00 CAD with shipping... But you know what I mean! I love TGC... It's just that doing it myself saves me a lot of monies in the process.

I will begin cutting and will report back tonight... I hope I can finish up one (1) Deck and the "extras" (for deck-construction).


Note #1: I also REVERTED back to Version 14 of the Scorecard because it's more in-line with the new version. In a way, I am restoring a lot of earlier aspects of the game. The one (1) Round for Battling is NOT new... but with all the revisions and attempts to make the game more FUN, this aspect has been restored to cut down on play-time.

Step #2: Cutting ... 50% done!

So I managed to take 2-Hours out of my time to cut 50% (or 1 Micro Deck plus all the "extras" required for Deck-Building) of the cards. I normally only test the SAME Micro Deck configuration because TBH I know what are the issues and have already examined the "Meta-Game" to ensure that there are no ways to abuse the present set of cards/Monsters.

Hopefully tomorrow I get the remainder cut and can do some playtesting on Friday evening.

Again keep you all notified as to the progress that I make. I will be HONEST and say that Version 23 is a "draft" of the NEW method of play. And so I am not 100% sure that this will be the "DEFINITE" version... But for most part, I feel like it will be a very "advanced" prototype and nearing the FINAL Version (if not this one... IDK). I've got a LOT ridding on this Version 23 and I really do hope that most issues have been ironed out.

There might be some FINE-TUNING to do... Not on the cards per-se ... But more in terms of RULES, PENALTIES, PLAY OPTIONS, SIMPLE VS. ADVANCED PLAY, etc. Things like that.

Cheers all ... Have a good night. I've got things to take care of tomorrow morning so I will be away until the afternoon.

Resume cutting this morning at 5:00 AM!

I'm busy this morning with some plans ahead of the afternoon; as such I went to bed rather early yesterday (9:30 PM). Well I woke up this morning at 5:00 AM to my surprise(!) and figured that since I no longer needed any more sleep, I would get to cutting the other 50% of the cards...

I've already cut 25% and will be getting to 50% soon.

I should be able to post an update soon enough with the cards fully cut as I had 4-Hours before 9:00 AM to start my day on-the-right-foot (so-to-speak).

Watch for updates in the next few hours.


Update #1: I've completed 50% of the cards (Cutting). I should be able to finish cutting them all before my morning plans. Which is great because it may mean that I can playtest a DAY "earlier". Keep you all posted as to my progress.

Update #2: I've completed 75% of the cards (Cutting). I am able to complete the cutting much quicker as there are literally "no distractions" at this time in the morning... eg. Most people are asleep and I can focus on the task at-hand without worrying that someone else requires my attention. One last batch and I should be done!

Update #3: I've completed 100% of the cards (Cutting). I have now set-up the game for a duel to test the validity of my design. I'm going to give it a 20-Minute rest just so that I can TIME the game correctly and see if my assumptions are correct with regards to the PLAY TIME and Battle Round... Of course one thing at a time... First we need to PLAY the 3 Round before the Battle Round and see how much time that takes.

In the next comment, I will report back to demonstrate how the playtesting has gone so far and if there are ANY issues with the current design that may either need tweaking or a complete re-think ... TBD.

Exhausting Attacking Monsters

It seems like having six (6) Monsters in-play per side is a LOT and could easily cause anyone to have an A/P reaction. And so I thought that maybe after a Monster ATTACKS, that Monster should be "Exhausted".

What does "Exhausting" mean???

It just means that the card has "attacked" (successfully or unsuccessfully) and for a period of time, that card CANNOT "attack" again until the tableau of cards shows that the card can be "re-activated".

The other "option" is that you only have SIX (6) Attacks and afterwards the "Battle Round" ends... If this is TRUE (and I'm thinking it might be logically so...) well then we will need to DROP the allocated points from 30 to 20 HP.

Something that divides BADLY into "6".

I'm not sure about this ATM... It's just some ideas that I have AFTER playing some of the "Battle Round" this morning.

I am going to have to put the game on PAUSE and "resume" when I get back home after my outings. TBH ... This feels real natural and needs to some room for improvement in the "Battle Round".

Get back to the table soon enough and report back my finding!


Putting on my "thinking" cap... Hehehe!

Obviously I've finally made it to the "Heart" or "Crux" (if you prefer) of the REAL ISSUE. Choosing cards and allocating them point values takes about 7 to 8-Minutes. More than I anticipated but less than the 10-Minute marker. So that is good, provided that the "Battle Round" lasts at most 20-Minutes.

Something to consider:

#1: How MANY points to allocate? 15, 20 or 30.

15 was the initial amount and it meant that some cards could have 3 HP and others 2 HP. That's a bit LOW TBH. 2 HP can "kill" a Card with one Mana Resource. And at the same time, do you really want to "kill" all of the opponent's Monsters?!

30 was the next default amount and it meant that you can evenly distribute 5 HP across all six (6) Monsters. That's too perfect and seems a bit HIGH TBH.

20 is in-between and manages to be Magic: the Gathering HP count too... So it may not be a bad value and it's not divisible by six (6). 3 HP and a couple 4 HP. Harder to balance ... But more difficult to kill rapidly 3 HP using the standard "1 Damage" for-each To-hit Value (very important).

Since the Frolicking Fairy (Dryad) "Tactic" does NOT STACK... There is no way to abuse the card except to have 3 "Dryads" and double up 3 other Monsters (or themselves). A bit of "Meta Game" going on here... But it's bound to happen in one way, shape or form. So I am aware of some "Meta".

If we use the 1 Point per "Damage Type", you can AT MOST cause "2 Damage" per one (1) Mana Resource. It could seem like "3" for a few cards ... But those cards are limited to only "2" (or even "1") Types of Damage.

#2: How to limit the amount of Attacking? "Exhaust" or something else...

It is apparent that IF a card is NOT "Exhausted" after "Attacking" there will be a SERIOUS A/P and too much Back-and-forth type of battles which I am really TRYING to AVOID. A/P because you don't know if you should attack with another card or only one (1) card ... See now I KNOW that doesn't sound RIGHT.

Why should you be able on multiple turns use the SAME Monster to attack all different or even the SAME opposing Monster?!

It's NOT logical. And will lead to A/P.

So "Exhausting" is a possibility for the Attacker... But maybe the DEFENDER should also be granted some kind of "rest" also...? I mean if you Attack and the opponent's Monster suffers Damage, I get the feeling that you don't want the attacker to simply "Gang-Up" on a card... right?!

I think there needs to be more thought on this one.

Perhaps BOTH cards get "Exhausted" (not really ...) I'm NOT happy with this as I feel like the DEFENDER should have the ability to use his wounded Monster and attack another Monster in-play.

This needs more "careful" consideration. This might require something a little bit more "clever" than simple "Exhaustion" and be a generic/default method of handling battles.

Conclusion: more thought needs to go into this second (2nd) consideration.


This is the TWO (2) ISSUES with the "Battle Round" ATM. I will refrain from any addition issues ... Because these two (2) are great starts into solidifying the "Battle Round".

What else was there? Combos for one... (I won't touch that until I've fixed the above two issues) And what to do with the PENALTY RPS too? Again that can wait until the pressing issues are examined further and that there is some kind of solution for them...

I'm going to give it a rest and see what I can come up with... There needs to be some more thought put into the "Battle Round" but I FINALLY feel like we are getting "somewhere"!

Kind Regards.

Idea #1: Fixed Point values (for HP)

So my first idea was to have Fixed Point values for the various cards in-play.

-3x 3 Points, 2x 2 Points and 1x 1 Point = Total of 14 Points.

This is ONE (1) option but I feel like with "2" Damage you can "kill" half the cards in-play and be in-reach of defeating all six (6) cards too! OMG...

Another "fixed" option is:

-1x 6 Points, 1x 5 Points, 1x 4 Points, 1x 3 Points, 1x 2 Points and 1x 1 Point

for a Total of 21 Points.

This is again sort-of like that in-between option. It's 21 versus 20... No biggie ... It's one (1) point above 20...

This is OPTION #2. Hard to kill three (3) (4-5-6) cards and weaker to the other half (3-2-1) which is about a 50% "kill" ratio. Again you can "kill" half the cards in-play but the others will be more resilient.

I am kinda liking this concept... It forces the players to plan ahead and understand their Micro Deck and what kind of strategy is your "play".

However as I examine BOTH of these "solutions" there runs the possibility of a TIE in scores because of how the game unfolds (rolling of the dice). It can also make the game suffer because of a BAD roll here-and-there and voila you get mixed feelings about "dice rolling" and being on the short-end of a roll or two...


The other thing that I have yet to resolve is the whole "Exhausting" mechanism. This is also another important aspect because it is tightly tied-into the whole concept of the "Battle Round" and dealing damage to your opponent to win the game/duel. I guess I'm still working on Issue #1 (HP Points) and seeing what are the various possibilities, potential challenges a solution creates and so forth.

IDK... I'm still actively working on a SOLUTION to TRY!

Idea #2: HP Matching attacks (Lower or equal HP)

This is maybe a bit like the "Exhausting" mechanism ... I'd say that a Monster may attack an OPPOSING Monster who is as strong as his own HP.

So this means a 1 Point Monster can ONLY (Maybe) attack his opponent's 1 Point Monster.

But a 6 Point Monster can attack any and ALL Monsters in-play.

While this is CLEVER... I highly FAVORS whomever goes FIRST (1st) in the "Battle Round". Because a "6" Attacks a "6" and that "6" gets Damaged to "5" or "4" for example and ONE (1) player is left with an UNDEFEATABLE card/Monster.

So it would seem as if the CONCEPT is a bit BROKEN.

However this may not be 100% accurate... Because it means that the "5" or "4" now can attack a "5" or "4" Monster and deal Damage to them as well. And if there is some king of "Exhaust" mechanism ... Having a "6 Point" card is not the end-all in terms of Battling...

Some merit ... If a "ripost" (Counter-attack) is permissible ... That could maybe(?) balance out this sort of mechanism...

Needs more thinking... But I'm definitely going in a "different" direction than what I had been thinking about.


Did some additional playtesting tonight...

And found that it's still a WIP: "Work-In-Progress". I was using the rules that the Distribution count was 15 HPs and that anytime a card "Attacked", it would be "Exhausted".

I did see one interesting FACTOR that makes me wonder about the "Damage Types"!?

It's NOT obvious who can ATTACK whom. I mean yeah when you look at the card you see "Power + Magic" meaning you can attack either or BOTH. But if you have "Skill + Magic" you effectively can ONLY do "Magic" Damage (or -1 Damage). So there is a bit of an issue with this too... To be examined in FURTHER DETAIL!

The "Exhausted" cards can only attack ONCE and that means six-ish (6-ish) Attacks per game. Which left a TON of Mana Pool Resources...

This gets me thinking that maybe there should be some kind of "Push-Your-Luck" mechanic that allows you to (somehow?) use resources in a non-traditional way. Something like GAMBLING or BIDDING on a ROLL. IDK YET either!


The playtest score was Player #1 = 9 Points (out of 15) vs. Player #2 = 6 Points.

Clearly this means that the "Battle Round" is NOT broken ... Just needs some more refinement and that PYL mechanic that I mentioned above (Maybe!)


More thought and playtesting is required... I believe that I have found ONE (1) "Meta Gaming" issue with the "Mystic". He deals "-1 HP to all adjacent Monsters" that could be sometimes "-3 HP" or even "-4 HP"... Put three (3) of these in your Micro Deck and we're starting to have a FORMULA for how to break the game... NOT GOOD (worrisome!)

Again this is far from over... Needs more thinking and playtesting to figure out what works best and what some of the hurdles may be.


Idea #3: Possible "Resistances"

I know that I previously "rejected" the idea of have a COLOR-PIE and different combinations of which colors can be "blocked" from attacking. This was in the whole gist of trying to have some kind of RPS-5 that could manage which cards could attack which other cards.

I said "NO" to resistances because I felt like I had a driver for a more NATURAL RPS which was the "Damage Types".

But I'm realizing that this may be NOT sufficiently FLEXIBLE for the game. And specifically the "Battle Round".

Like IF I had a RESISTANCE like "Red Monster" has a Resistance for "Red" means that ALL other Monsters can attack this Monster EXCEPT for "Red Monsters" themselves. This seems more flexible depending on how I setup the parameters to go along with the RESISTANCES.


IDK YET. This is embryonic and I'm much too tired to continue to reflect about how this COULD work... It's late 11:30 PM and I've been up since 5:00 AM. So time for some sleep and we'll see what tomorrow brings in terms of what could be beneficial to the "Battle Round".

Cheers all.

Idea #4: Push-Your-Luck / Gambling Mechanic

So I am realizing that the a few things that are important with the "Battle Round" are that you cannot "kill" all opposing Monsters and secondly, there are a bunch of Mana Pool Resources that are STILL "available" at the end of the "Battle Round" (which is NOT ideal!)

I'm still pondering about how to add a PYL mechanic to the "Battle Round" such that it would not ALTER MUCH of the game but be for some "Tactical Victories"...

We'll have to wait and see what I can come up with. For the moment, this is just an "IDEA" and depending on what kind of implementation I get... That will affect the outcome how the PYL gets implemented and IF we add it to the game.


Update #1: I have been thinking about the Monster "Tactics" or Abilities ... and whether some of the should cost Points from a player's Mana Pools!? Power, Skill or Magic ... Or "anything" HP related like "Heal +2 HP damage" would require "2 Resources" or "Deal -2 HP to a Monster" would require "2 Resources" also...

Why do I think this is a GOOD idea???

Well otherwise Monster "Tactics" DEAL DAMAGE but work "outside" the framework of the remainder of the "Battle Round". If a tactic AFFECTS HP in ANY WAY I feel like it should be linked to the Mana Pool Resources.

Again WHY???

Because if you use the "Mystic" and deal -1 HP to all ADJACENT Monsters that can DEAL up to -4 HP of Damage. That is NOT an INSIGNIFICANT amount. And it directly IMPACTS the SCORE and lowers the opponent's points.

As such, I feel like there needs to be a BETTER "Balance".

Whether it is HEALING or DEALING "Damage", Resources must be used to do so. And for that matter "Healing" is a bit of a dubious cause. I should instead report that to HEAL is simply to BOOST ANY Monster by +Y HP. And that HP should be collected from the Mana Pools.

I will conduct ANOTHER playtest tomorrow... And use this method of MATCHING the Mana Pool Resources to the "Tactics" which affect the HP of any and all given Monsters.

Update #2: More important effect on Resources

The other point that I wanted to make about HP-related "Tactics" is that this means that RESOURCES or other "Tactics" like "+1 Power" or "-1 Magic" will play an EVEN MORE IMPORTANT role...

Right now (in previous playtests) there was an abundance of Mana. And the passive abilities of adding or subtracting a Mana-type were relatively un-important. But with the proposal that I made in the previous comment update #1, it will mean that Mana will play a more important role and may be less available to be used "freely".

Furthermore this is VERY important because it HELPs with the "Meta Gaming"!

How so? Well the idea would be to build a Micro Deck with "3 Mystics" and use the "Rain of Fire" Tactic to deal a bunch of damage three (3) times over and it would not COST any Mana or Resources.

That SOUNDS (and is) BAD!

While it's cool to have that kind of FIREPOWER ... To have it without any effect or COST is REALLY a BAD idea. And with the "Meta Gaming" it could potentially BREAK the "Balance" of the game.

PAYING a Mana Cost makes it more REASONABLE and "Balanced" that these types of DAMAGES are "paid for" via their respective Mana Pool Resources.

Again I will do a playtest tomorrow with THESE modifications FIRST. Before the PYL and Resistance ... Just to see if the Mana is MORE "Balanced". And that the game AS-IS is much more "Balanced" that I actually think.

Cheers all.

I was out most of the day today and ...

Today is a Civic Holiday in Canada (and Quebec too!) It's Victoria Day in remembrance of Queen Victoria (a relation to Queen Elizabeth and a previous heir to the throne). So everyone had the day off today (most people) but stores and restaurants were open today... But still was a holiday and you could tell by the amount of traffic (much less today as people were outdoors golfing, BBQ-ing and taking it easy!)

As such I did not get the chance to playtest again. Nor could I test the ideas in "Update #2" (namely the COST of "Damage-Type" Abilities)...

One of the ideas that I have is to RENAME these "Interrrupt" Tactics (or Abilities) and make the "Direct" (because they perform a PERMANENT form of Damage). "Passives" work once and when then are revealed, "Interrupts" work only in the "Battle Round" and are only useable once and "Direct" will be PERMANENTS that affect the Scoring of the Duel...

This to me SOUNDS "logical"... What do you think???

If anyone feels like commenting or share your thoughts to this 3rd Category of Abilities... Feel free to let me know!

About Idea #4: Push-Your-Luck

I finally have a GREAT idea for the PYL (Push-Your-Luck Mechanic)... Using pocket change in the USA and Canada (maybe elsewhere too - TBD).

So you would need the following:

-2x 5 Cents, 2x 10 Cents and 2x 25 Cents.

If you DEFEAT a Monster you get to KEEP "the Bounty"! Ergo. "Monster KEEP"...

How does this play??? In terms of REAL MONEY!

-5 Cents = $5.00
-10 Cents = $10.00
-25 Cents = $20.00 (or 0.20 Euros)

In REAL MONEY (as in Gambling). Who cares about a quarter or five (5) cents. But $5.00 ... Now you are talking a different LANGUAGE altogether!

I'm going to categorize this in the "Wild to CRAZY Ideas" that could potentially make the game more competitive like Poker. For now let's just catalog the "idea" and see what comes of it in some PLAYTESTING!

Sometimes CRAZY ideas may be interesting and add someone KEEP-ing the money. Hehehe.

Note #1: I feel it's TOO SIMPLE (the direct conversion) and nobody cares about $0.10 or even $0.25 for that matter.

The IDEA that I am having is EACH "Monster" that has a 5 Cents, each Damage Dealt to that Monster "ADDS" +5 Cents. So if the Monster has "1 HP", the opponent can DEFEAT him and EARN +5 Cents. But if the Monster has "3 HP" and has +10 Cents, that means you earn 30 Cents if you DEFEAT him.

Lastly if the Monster has a Quarter (25 Cents) and has "4 or 5 HP" you earn $1 or $1.25 for DEFEATING that Monster.

Again this is EMBRYONIC ... I think some of the IDEAS could maybe forge some better ideas with regards to GAMBLING. I will ponder on these matters further and see what may come of them.

Note #2: Since the Point values (HP) are 1 to 5 HP, the could each symbolize ONE (1) Dollar... You can either DEFEAT 2x $1.00 or 1x $2.00 and the score would be the same and the money gained would be ZERO (0) NET.

This could be BETTER because of the distribution:

$1, $2, $3, $4, and $5 = $15 Dollars per Duel.

Now this is starting to be MORE interesting TBH! Again I will TEST this out and see how it plays and what are the STRATEGIES involved.

Let you all know in the next few days (maybe as early as tomorrow night)!

Note #3: Maybe this could be an "unofficial" RULE to the game.... You can play with NO MONEY involved ... And you can play WITH MONEY if you want to have an added level of IMPACT when it comes to "DEFEATING" Monsters and KEEP-ing they treasure troves!

I will (maybe) explore it ... But I will definitely analyze the IMPACT of such RULES...

How to make things SIMPLE but reasonable???

I am having some troubles with the "Battle Round"... No doubt if anyone can help me that would be greatly appreciated. So let me continue to explain the issues that I am facing with the "Battle Round":

According to STATs if I have a "Mystic" fighting a "Dryad".

The "Mystic" has the following:

STATs = (0/0/8)
Tactic = "Can deal -1 HP to all adjacent Monsters".

So this means that the "Mystic" can EITHER deal 0 Damage or -2 "Magic" Damage. Which is how things are (for now).

I am re-thinking IDEA #3: Resistances. OR more like something that can ALTER the Damage output. Not sure... Right now there seems to be some CONFUSION over "Attack Damage" and "Permissible Damage Types". It's not simple and it leads to "forgetting steps" or "mistakes" in computation, etc.

The "Dryad" has the following:

STATs = (0/5/8)
Tactic = "Allow one Monster to Attack twice (2x)".

Now here is where I make my ISSUE CLEAR:

The "Mystic" allows for a "Magic" ATTACK.
The "Dryad" allows for a "Skill AND Magic" ATTACK.

What are the conclusions so far???

Well they go like this:

The "Mystic" can deal "2 Magic Damage" = 2 Damage (max).
The "Dryad" can deal "1 Skill Damage" + "2 Magic Damage" = 3 Damage (max).

Here is where things are a bit confusing...

NETIHER of these TWO (2) Monsters can DEAL "Power" Damage. But this is UNIMPORTANT IF(???) we are ONLY "dealing Damage". The TYPE would be irrelevant (or so it seems).

The "Mystic" Rolls a "8" and Deals 2 "DAMAGE" (Important is that it's JUST DAMAGE and this is the source of confusion).

The "Dryad" has "Skill + Magic" (and this needs to be re-invented) and so the "Mystic" ATTACK is ACCEPTABLE (in the current version of the game).

BUT I want the "Mystic" to DEAL 2 DAMAGE (only). No comparison because it makes the game OVERLY complicated for no benefit TBH.


Okay let me take a BREAK for tonight ... And I will resume this tomorrow!

After some further analysis last night...

Here's what I got:

1> Dealing Damage

Damage is defined by the STATs and goes from one (1) to four (4) Damage (1 to 4). Also on a poor roll zero (0) Damage may also occur. With rolls involving the Arcane Die (>6), those attacks deal TWO (2) Damage (also important to remember...)

2> Paying for an Attack

Each Monster has a "COST" which works out to be a Mana Resource (one of three) and it can be one of many: "Skill • Magic" means that that the Attacker can choose EITHER Mana Resource to pay (Skill OR Magic).

3> Damage Types

Given this RPS-5 we have a way of REDUCING the amount of Damage by -1 Damage:

Melee => Explosive => Ranged => Wizardry => Flying => Melee.

So there will be a HINT on each card that tells you the "Resistance" for each Monster.

4> Resistances

As mentioned in Point #3, each Monster will have a HINT to his/her own "Resistance". For example: If a "Melee" Monster ATTACKS a "Flying" one, the "Melee" Attacker suffer -1 Damage Penalty due to the RPS.

This will be simple and not require memorization of the RPS-5 because the Melee Monster will have text for "Flying" which means when attacking FLYING Monsters, it deals one less damage.


This was most of the analysis that I did last night before heading to bed after posting that last comment above that said that I "needed more reflection"! I think that the time reflecting was well spent and that I came to some very interesting conclusions.

One important NOTE to remember is that the Monster doing the ATTACKING uses its OWN STATs which are "pre-determined". BUT then the DEFENDING Monster offers the "Attacker" the CHOICE of which Mana will be used for the ATTACK...

This is VERY different from the current version where the "Attacks" were being pre-determined IF they should be POSSIBLE or NOT. Instead you have SIX (6) Monsters in play, each one can do ONE (1) Attack and the "Battle Round" is DONE... As SIMPLE as that.


Talking about SIMPLICITY, I am going with something LEAN and EASY. Even so it may take like 15 to 20 Minutes to resolve the entire "Battle Round". And as such, this is reasonably acceptable (in terms of time). Clearly the game is headed in the "Right Direction" as I TRY to "streamline" the "Battle Round" and make it MORE INTUITIVE and easy to understand... I also don't want the round to be too "overly complicated" because that could adversely affect the player base and that too is very important: You want the players to be engaged and maybe(?!) play a match or two...

I've decided to WAIT before printing a new Version...

Because none of what I wrote in the previous comment requires any specific type of editing (card-wise), I have opted NOT to re-print the cards. It would be a total waste of time and money to print NEW cards when the current batch can easily serve as the next Version for a NEW playtest.

I plan to playtest later on tonight (in the evening probably).

Keep you all posted on my progress...


What happened after the LAST playtest???

Well although it is BETTER, there still is confusion about WHO can ATTACK WHOM!?

When a Monster decides to "Attack" after the attack is done (successful or failure) that Monster becomes "Exhausted" and CANNOT attack again (unless a Tactic is used to allow for 2-Attacks in 1-Turn).

This is SET in STONE. And there are no issues with this.

When a Monster is DEFEATED (HP = 0 or below), that card is flipped over to indicate that the Monster is no longer. This also makes a LOT of SENSE and is GOOD AS-IS. Again no issues with this either.

Where we get to the "confusion" is if a Monster can "Attack" an "Exhausted" Monster...!? So the Monster has already "Attacked" and IS "Exhausted" (Card turned 90 degrees - on its side) ... Should this Monster be able to be ATTACKED??? This is something I need to "contemplate" a bit more. Right now I played it as NO, "Exhausted" means DONE, FIN, END!

Again I think this merits more THOUGHT. And to see HOW(?) this should be handled. Is it OKAY the way I currently have it or is there need for a change?

Also what is the "Meta Game" consequences of this... And how does this allow players to (maybe?!) mess with the game and the method of play. IDK... TBD.

I will ponder this tonight and see what I get as ANSWERS to this issue. I need to figure out the LOGIC and what makes GREATER sense and how ATTACKING remains a strategic manoeuvre...

I'll let you all know when I know further about this issue.


Also there might be a CONDITION that when one player CANNOT "Attack" the opponent this IMMEDIATLY "Ends the Battle Round". So Player #1 was left with a "3 Point" Monster and his opponent still had an unused "Executioner". Had it been Player #2 turn, he could have used the "Executioner" to attack the LAST Monster in Player #1 arsenal... But it did NOT work-out this way.


These are minor things that need to facilitate SMOOTHER combat rules. I'm still thinking about the "Exhausted/Attack" scenarios and see what I can piece together. The rest seems OK AS-IS!


IDEA #5: Can ONLY play 2-Instances of the SAME Monster

As an added form of restriction to Deck Building, you are allowed THREE (3) of any Monster in your 15-Card Micro Deck. That's fine and works okay... But I was thinking of an additional RESTRICTION that only "2-Instances" of the SAME Monster may be played into your Tableau...?!

I was thinking only ONE (1) of each Monster ... But this feels too "un-flexible" and requires some additional thinking ... Because it could lead to hands with insufficient cards in-hand. Well let's EXAMINE this a bit...!

So in Round #1, you draw five (5) cards and PLAY three "3". If ONE (1) is played and you have 3 in-hand of the SAME Monster, you need to DISCARD the two (2) OTHERS leaving the other choices the remaining two (2) cards... So "3" unique cards get played.

But if you have only "2" UNIQUE Monsters in the five (5) cards drawn... There is a PROBLEM. So therefore my "conclusion" of ONLY playing 2-Instances of the SAME Monster is GOOD (I think?!)

Therefore you would play "2" (A) and "1" (B) and discard "1" (A & B) or you could KEEP "1" (B)... For the NEXT Round (#2).

Round #2 you draw either FOUR (4) or FIVE (5) cards (again). And you only NEED to play two (2) cards. You could have three (3) of Card "C" and perhap two (2) of Card "D". It still works even with the "Meta Game".

This exercise shows that 2-Instances of the SAME Monster should ONLY be allowed... This "Affects" the "Meta Game" quite a bit... It prevents the use of certain cards OVER-AND-OVER due to the "brute nature" of some of the STRONGER cards... In any event... The problem IS SOLVED by ONLY allowing 2-Instances of the SAME Monster.

Good analysis.

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