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Momentum

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coco
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Joined: 07/27/2008

Hi!

I'm investigating a physical concept called 'momentum' applied to board games.

It's hard to define this in english, but I'll try to do it with an example. Here is a game I've designed only to test this. Call it 'momentum' or 'bulletfest' or 'gunfight' or whatever. It's just an experiment.

The more the players, the better.

The game uses a standard deck of cards. If there are too many players, simply add more decks.

The deck is shuffled and placed in the middle of the table. If the deck gets exhausted then the discard pile becomes the drawing pile.

Players in turn (clockwise i.e.) MUST do one of these 3 things:

1. Draw a card FACING DOWN, thereby gaining MOMENTUM. Players can't see their own cards.
2. Shoot a card to another player: The player discards one of his cards (facing down) and selects another player. The selected player MUST discard ALL of his cards.
3. Call. The player reveals his cards and scores 1 point per every figure (J,Q,K). Then discards all the cards.

So what happens here?

- The more momentum, the higher potential score.
- The more momentum, the higher the risk to score 0 by being shot.
- The more the calls a player does, the less potential score. (i.e. draw-call-draw-call... is slower than draw-draw-draw-....-call)
- The more the shots, the less the potential score.

So what strategy derives from here?

- Never call until someone calls. Then call. This implies infinite momentum with no score if everybody follows this strategy. So what it seems like an optimal strategy brings no benefit. (I must add a limitation then. Maybe a timebomb with hidden timer).
- Call if someone shots to secure your score.
- draw...draw-Call-draw-shot-draw-shot... hence the name 'bulletfest'.

Just wanted to share this. Can you give it a try?

NĂ©stor

AlexWeldon
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Joined: 04/06/2009
A few comments

A few comments.

1) I'm not sure momentum is really the word you're looking for here. To me, momentum would imply the more you persist in a course of action, the harder it is for others to stop you, but the harder it is for you to change plans. Here, you don't really have any momentum, because all the cards you build up can be wiped out by someone else shooting you.

2) If you can't see your own cards, the fact that you only get points for face cards is irrelevant, except to make it impossible to guarantee a win with optimal play. You could just as well play it with tokens and make them all one point, and the strategy wouldn't change.

3) In a two-player game, you'd always be correct to shoot if the opponent has more tokens than you. More generally, in an N-player game, it's correct to shoot the next player to act if they have tokens >= N, unless you have more than that yourself, in which case obviously you call. This is a general principle in multiplayer strategy games... assuming you're not near the end of the game, and all players' scores are similar, you only want to make a purely negative move that costs you X points if the total loss suffered by all other players is > (n-1)X, where n is the number of players.

4) In general, the moment at which you should call is whenever drawing would make it correct for another player to shoot you. So, in a 4-player game, you should call with 3 tokens, unless everyone else has zero, as drawing would put you at 4 and make it correct for someone else to shoot you.

5) In a 3+ player game, if someone has enough tokens to be worth shooting, and multiple opponents are capable of doing so, the first ones to act should draw or call instead, thereby forcing the last player to shoot.

6) Thus, I think optimal opening play by intelligent players in a 3-player game would look like:

P1 - DRAW, P2 - DRAW, P3 - DRAW, P1- DRAW, P2 - DRAW, P3 - DRAW, P1 - CALL (as otherwise P2 would call and P3 would shoot P1), P2 - CALL (as otherwise P3 will shoot)...

but now P3 can DRAW safely, as the other two have no tokens!

P3 - DRAW, P1 - DRAW, P2 - DRAW, P3 - CALL.

So now the score is 2:2:3, but P1 and P2 now have one token each and P3 has none. I don't know who wins in the long run.

7) If played "First to X points wins," with no turn cap, a 3-player game should always result in a draw, as when one player comes within one point of winning, the other two can take turns shooting him to prevent him from winning, though they'll never gain any ground doing so. Likewise, no player should ever get very far ahead in a 3+ player game as it is easy for the others to gang up.

The Magician
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Joined: 12/23/2008
It looks like it could be an

It looks like it could be an interesting fast pace game. I need to sit down and try it with some cards. Keep experimenting Nector!

coco
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Joined: 07/27/2008
experimenting

The Magician wrote:
Keep experimenting Nector!

I allways do. Thank you for trying it!

(It's 'NESTOR') ;-)

The Magician
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Joined: 12/23/2008
coco wrote:The Magician

coco wrote:
The Magician wrote:
Keep experimenting Nector!

I allways do. Thank you for trying it!

(It's 'NESTOR') ;-)


lol, sorry sometimes I forget spelling of words once they're off the screen. Half the time it's typos and the other have just being roten with word spelling. No, I haven't tried it yet though. So can't offer much feedback at the moment. I figured a preliminary opinion should count for something. Doesn't it follow logic that if someone likes the idea, your on to something. I mean putting analysis aside, don't we want to know if the first shot is favorable- the seed. Than you can say aahhhhhhhh "they liked the idea!" lol

coco
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Joined: 07/27/2008
working

I'm working on it, so I think I can have a decent game soon. I'm throwing a few mechanics into it.

AlexWeldon
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Joined: 04/06/2009
Fighting game like this

I had an idea somewhat similar to this for a fighting game wherein players build "combo stacks" of cards representing various moves, then choose when to execute their current combo, resolving all the moves in sequence. The basic strategy was similar - you can keep building your combo for as long as you want, but it takes a turn to unleash it, so you get a better return the longer you wait. However, if the opponent can block one move in the combo (I guess you have a hand of cards, and various blocking maneuvers could be hidden in the opponent's hand), all subsequent moves don't count, so you want your more powerful, easy-to-block moves near the end, and some quick, hard-to-block ones to start, and the deeper your stack gets, the more you risk having an early move blocked and wasting a lot of cards/turns.

It's always been just another idea floating around the ol' grey matter, though - I haven't tried to work out any specifics.

coco
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Joined: 07/27/2008
fighting mechanic

It sounds like a great fighting mechanic. Please tell me more as you advance on it.

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