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help deciding on combat mechanic

5 replies [Last post]
Joined: 06/11/2017

Hi there, long time reader, first time poster.

Im having trouble narrowing a combat system for my game.

1vs1 on a grid, and on each turn, the player can move, attack (on range 1, 2 or 3) with or without special attack abilities.

Every available action (move, attack range 1, 2 or 3 and special abilities) come from a card from a deck. The player can choose up to 3 cards to play in a turn (for example, move right, shoot range 2 and use explosive bullet).

Now the thing is... how do I let players get the cards?

option 1
Each player has her own deck (so the other player can count and prepare) and each turn draws up to 5 cards in their hands.

option 2
Each player throw a 1d4 and add that many cards from the single deck, at the end player has to discard to a max of 5 cards in her hand.

I want to have a little luck, but prefer the game to be more strategic than lucky based.

Pros and cons? Any new ideas would be appreciated. Even if the idea is super out there. The only thing settled is that the player has to be able to move, attack or use a special, in any combination on her turn.

Thanks in advance, I dont know if I explained myself... I guess writing rules is going to be a tough task.

let-off studios
let-off studios's picture
Joined: 02/07/2011

What's this game about? Is there something tied to your theme that you can incorporate into the game mechanics? Here are some suggestions based on the little information I know about your game.

- Locations on the board indicate how many cards players can draw when they're moved into.
- Each player draws one or more cards depending on the specific actions taken by their opponent.
- Players draw cards on their turn based on the type of attack they want to make: short-range, long-range, strong, etc.
- Players roll a die. The higher number rolled draws 2, and the lower number draws 1. If it's a tie, both players draw 1.

There really is no limit to the options at your disposal. But I would suggest looking into your theme to develop a more immersive way of drawing cards/adding to a player's hand.

There may be an answer that's obvious to you - particularly if your theme idea is very strong - but in other cases it may take a little work to settle on something. If you're not sure on a theme just yet, then the good news is that maybe the mechanic you choose can help you narrow-down or solidify a choice of theme.

Joined: 01/27/2017
I agree

Hi there!

I agree that theme should influence the decision here. Having the board location dictate card draws makes some areas more strategic than others, especially if there are only a couple places where you could reliably move between two good locations.

On the other hand, I would recommend against using a d4 for anything. Reading them is difficult for new players, and they somehow always get on the floor if anyone is barefoot. A d8 labeled 1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4 is perfectly fine, just not a d4.

winged_box's picture
Joined: 07/04/2017
I think Option 1 is more to

I think Option 1 is more to your 'little luck, but prefer the game to be more strategic than lucky based.'

MAR's picture
Joined: 04/23/2017
Game Mechanic

I have to agree with the above posters. Theme is definitely important. If you can, it would help to describe the theme a bit, and perhaps some of the other rules or factors.

If I understand correctly, the primary features are:
(No form of Defend or counter?)

Simply speaking, range can be absorbed into attack, move, and special. I agree that rolling dice for a regular form of card drawing is not good, (drawing cards themselves is luck enough), but dice can be used in some special abilities. I personally like d4s, but they can hurt to step on, and are a strange die to interpret.

Perhaps you can either A. have a universal deck to draw from or B. split the deck and have two individual decks. If I read correctly, you said up to 3 cards can be played per turn. Perhaps you can make each player draw 5 cards. Whenever they play cards, they must draw cards to regain a total of 5. (This playing 3, you draw 3. Playing 1, you draw 1)

If you have defensive or counter cards, they can be held in the hand and played whenever the opponent is attacking etc., but cards must again be drawn to equal 5.

Above I mentioned that range can be absorbed into move, attack, and special. This means that, in my thinking, you could draw attack cards where the attack could be a certain strength and range, special cards that can be a certain power/ strength and ranger, and move cards that can be specific distances as well.

That is probably the best that I can come up with, without knowing more about the game :) Good luck with it! Let us know what you come up with


Joined: 06/11/2017

First of all, thanks for all the feedback.

So the game is a 1vs1 combat game with medieval theme, where each player has a trebuchet or catapult. Some of the specials "damage" or block the terrain, so the other layer has to work her way around obstacle. You try to block or corner the opponent using such powers.

Each turn, the players prepare by selecting move cards, shooting cards and special cards in any combination, and then each move at the same time, and then shoot at the same time.

every player has his own deck but they're identical, so you can count to see what does the other player still in stock, although its difficult.

You cant defend, but you can try to move out of the way.

If you need more info let me know. Thanks a lot again!

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