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Dice roll to determine speed of attack

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Squinshee
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In my game, if both players decided to attack as their turn's action (my game uses a double-blind then reveal mechanic) the faster attack (the bigger number) hits first and negates the opponent's attack.

Initially I had attacks as static numbers, but now that I'm severely decreasing the number of attacks in my game, I want players to roll dice to determine the speed. If both players decide to attack, I feel like that should be an exciting moment and dice are fun to throw around (and there is no other variance to be found in my game).

I haven't figured out a system that I'm pleased with yet. Math probabilities are not my forté, but AnyDice.com has been super helpful on that front. These are the two ideas I'm juggling around:

1) Attacks speed is the number of dice you roll for that attack. I have found that a d6 with these sides (0, 0, 0, 1, 2, 3) lowers the advantage of rolling more dice a bit, but I don't like the low odds of a player rolling 4d6 and another player rolling 7d6. In that situation, 4d6 guy has a ~20% chance of rolling higher than 7d6. I can't tell if that's a good disparity or not. I don't want players to feel like their rolls are futile.

2) Players always roll 5d6 when they attack with this spread (0, 0, 1, 1, 2, 2), with each attack having a "Max Speed" value. After you roll, you add all of the dice, BUT your speed can't surpass the attack's max speed. This let's me control speed percentages a lot more yet it may rob player's excitement of rolling the dice.

Thoughts, questions, concerns, ideas? Let me know! Thanks for listening.

MarkD1733
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So many ways to go...

Just for clarification, attack speed is the same is initiative like other games might have?

First, not knowing the theme of your game, is there anything thematically that would help to pick a direction? My only initial reaction to your ideas was that I wouldn't want the determination of attack speed to be too complicated so It overshadows the attack itself. That being said, I would keep the attack speed or initiative roll simple. No more than 2 dice.

If each players choice is committed prior to the dice rolls, then is there any thought of rolling different color dice at the same time to determine speed? Let's say for ease of calculation stick my no more than 2 dice suggestion. Also, do the players start out with any starting value based on their characters or roles?

If the players choices are not 100% committed such that given the attack success or failure, the other player can choose to retreat or flee, would you be amenable to rolling in sequence? you could also work this to allow a Player a last-second decision to not engage in the flight.

A third option could be that the weaker attack (i.e., less dice) simply goes first if there is always going to be that difference. In the game 1775, the defender always goes first. I don't see why that couldn't be an equitable solution without having to necessarily calculate or randomize something. I would focus on the attack and damage more so.

Squinshee
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At its core, players have

At its core, players have three options: attack, block, and grab. Attack beats grab, grab beats block, block beats attack. You choose your action (one of those three) and then reveal your action. It's a simple RPS cycle. Therefore turns are simultaneous.

Now, if both players choose attack, the faster attack is the one that hits, thus preventing the other attack. Not choosing to engage after reveal isn't an option.

I hope this clarifies your gameplay questions and thanks for the response!

Squinshee
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I didn't answer one of your

I didn't answer one of your questions! Sorry.

• Characters and attacks, at least at the moment, do not add a value to the dice rolls.

I'm realizing how much I'm over complicating these rolls. A simple, average d6 could operate using my "max speed" without the need of 5 dice. So if an attack'a max speed is 4 and your roll a 6, the speed of your attack is 4. If you rolled a 2, the speed would then be 2. Does that seem interesting?

Squinshee
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Oh my goodness triple post

Oh my goodness triple post I'm so sorry :(

I still haven't come up with an interesting tie-beaker rule. I could assign a speed to each character that would be used to decide who's faster, but I think there's an opportunity here to do something interesting.

X3M
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Well, after my week vacation.

Well, after my week vacation. Let me reply at least to the 20% chance.

That is a chance after the blind choice, right? In that case players still want to roll to have that "survival" chance.

A chance of "1/6th" is the lowest chance that players are willing to take (if forced) until it becomes a "futile" chance. Although you should try to keep these chances rare. Or as an extra roll for a bonus effect. Then they are willing to go as far as "1/12th" or even lower depending on the bonus strength.

If players are allowed to take a chance by choice. Then the strength of the result has to be taken into account as well. They often dislike to go any lower than "1/3th".

I have given examples that mirror my personal preferences. But younger ages (less patient players) need higher chances than the older ages.

For the young, I suggest 1/2th (50-50), 1/4th (so not the 20% you have posted) and 1/8th (lowest chance for a bonus) as guidance.

Masacroso
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Squinshee wrote:In my game,

Squinshee wrote:
In my game, if both players decided to attack as their turn's action (my game uses a double-blind then reveal mechanic) the faster attack (the bigger number) hits first and negates the opponent's attack.

Initially I had attacks as static numbers, but now that I'm severely decreasing the number of attacks in my game, I want players to roll dice to determine the speed. If both players decide to attack, I feel like that should be an exciting moment and dice are fun to throw around (and there is no other variance to be found in my game).

I haven't figured out a system that I'm pleased with yet. Math probabilities are not my forté, but AnyDice.com has been super helpful on that front. These are the two ideas I'm juggling around:

1) Attacks speed is the number of dice you roll for that attack. I have found that a d6 with these sides (0, 0, 0, 1, 2, 3) lowers the advantage of rolling more dice a bit, but I don't like the low odds of a player rolling 4d6 and another player rolling 7d6. In that situation, 4d6 guy has a ~20% chance of rolling higher than 7d6. I can't tell if that's a good disparity or not. I don't want players to feel like their rolls are futile.

2) Players always roll 5d6 when they attack with this spread (0, 0, 1, 1, 2, 2), with each attack having a "Max Speed" value. After you roll, you add all of the dice, BUT your speed can't surpass the attack's max speed. This let's me control speed percentages a lot more yet it may rob player's excitement of rolling the dice.

Thoughts, questions, concerns, ideas? Let me know! Thanks for listening.

First of all: congratulations for the mechanic to decide the resolution of action randomly... I really liked it A LOT. This is a different alternative to the classic play by turns or simultaneity... really interesting, it adds too much interesting things to think around (come to my mind ideas as brownian movement or random walk).

I dont understand completely the relation between initiative and attack on your games... And I dont think that is a good idea a large number of dice to roll, I dont know, but it sounds as "unnecessary complexity", just I feel it maybe Im wrong.

What Im understanding is that you want to set initiative of attack and attack strength at once, in the same roll, it is this?

The initiative, or speed, maybe just a portion of the attack or numbers of the roll. Or maybe a decision coming from odd or even numbers. But I dont know if Im understanding you very well :S

Another recomendation is that you try to use normal D6 instead of some rare dice cause it becomes more familiar and easy to play your game anywhere.

Zag24
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Joined: 03/02/2014
I'm concerned ...

I'm concerned that your plan will not create the drama that you're looking for, but will just be a source of frustration for the one who loses more often.

You said that the first attack negates the second one, so it means that attacking first is the most important element. I assume that there are other actions you might do, so there isn't always this speed conflict at all. So you can use that to create decision tension, which you should generally be looking for in games.

I suggest you go back to having fixed speeds per weapon, or maybe mostly fixed but with a small amount of randomness. Then make the weapons that are fast do little damage, and the weapons that do a lot of damage are slow.

As the player, I have to make a tough decision. If I think my opponent is going to attack me, then I want the fastest weapon I can get my hands on. I won't hurt him much, but I'll prevent him from hurting me. On the other hand, if I am pretty sure he's going to do something else (and I still want to attack) then I want to get the most damaging weapon I can use, with the risk that if he does attack, I'm going to waste my turn.

MarkD1733
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what about choosing action, then "bidding" speed?

Could it be that you declare your action, then roll (lets say 4d6) secretly, then secretly allocate 2 dice to speed and the other 2 to damage. If you make the rule that higher is better for both results, the choice is tricky, especially if only first hit deals damage. Is that enough of a choice? BUT WHAT IF THE DAMAGE ALSO HAD TO MEET OR BEAT THE SPEED in order to affect?! Is that an interesting dimension? Or too much of choice? It is a tricky decision for a player if they roll mixed dice...do I max my speed for ensuring I am the one hitting fjrst, or do I try for maximum damage to ensure it hits. This way both players decide, roll, there is randomness, but then they can still ultimately determine how their action actually played out. Not sure if that helps.

Masacroso
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MarkD1733 wrote:Could it be

MarkD1733 wrote:
Could it be that you declare your action, then roll (lets say 4d6) secretly, then secretly allocate 2 dice to speed and the other 2 to damage. If you make the rule that higher is better for both results, the choice is tricky, especially if only first hit deals damage. Is that enough of a choice? BUT WHAT IF THE DAMAGE ALSO HAD TO MEET OR BEAT THE SPEED in order to affect?! Is that an interesting dimension? Or too much of choice? It is a tricky decision for a player if they roll mixed dice...do I max my speed for ensuring I am the one hitting fjrst, or do I try for maximum damage to ensure it hits. This way both players decide, roll, there is randomness, but then they can still ultimately determine how their action actually played out. Not sure if that helps.

I like this idea maybe not for the game of the topic but it is a really interesting mechanic to test...

It seems to go well only for average values of speed and damage. Only in the middle you can hit AND make damage... going to extreme values is a sure fail.

If someone when roll takes low values he will go for a conservative play, going to extreme speed to avoid damage.

Anyway it seems to go for a slow gameplay with a high amount of fail attempts.

Taavet
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Tie breaker mechanic

Seems what you are looking for is a tie breaker mechanic? Do you want random or not?

Options:
Player A = Attack, Player B = Attack
Player A = Block, Player B = Block
Player A = Grab, Player B = Grab

Then for the others you already have Attack beats Grab, Grab beats Block, Block beats Attack.

If its just a two player game what about a simple 'Possession' coin like in Basketball. When its a jump ball they don't jump just alternate possession. So as each 'tie' occurs then the other player gets initiative. It won't have the randomness which may also provide a little tension or drama but it will give player extra confidence when to attack.

You could also do something where you provide something to the loser of a tie, so that it isn't a complete waste? 1 more damage to their next attack (successful or not), 1 more resource for their next grab (successful or not), 1 more reinforcement on their next block (successful or not)?

Squinshee
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That's a very interesting

That's a very interesting idea. I like how it approaches the problem in a different way by removing randomness. It's a factor both players must consider and adds a cute sliver of design space.

Thanks for attacking this from a new angle. I'll let you know how it plays when I end up crafting a prototype!

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